Films of the French New Wave -- The Essentials
Movies screened will be subtitled and will include works by Truffaut, Godard, Varda, Demy, Rohmer, Maker, and others. Students may attend scheduled screenings or stream the films on their own.
This course will introduce students to a number of classic films of the French New Wave, perhaps the most important and emblematic moment in modern cinema, and still a point of reference for filmmakers ranging from Quentin Tarantino and Martin Scorsese to Alfonso Cuarón and Wong Kar-Wai. Along the way, we will look at the theoretical and cultural factors that help explain this extraordinary flowering of filmmaking talent in the late 1950s and early 1960s; and we will also be reading some important short essays from the period that will help bring the films’ originality into focus. General points to be explored include: France and American popular culture; post-war economic transformations and consumerism; changing norms of sex and gender; the documentary image; the subversion and pastiche of genre; the ideology of form. Movies screened will be subtitled and will include works by Truffaut, Godard, Varda, Demy, Rohmer, Maker, and others. Students may attend scheduled screenings or stream the films on their own.
This course satisfies the College of Letters and Science breadth requirement in Historical Studies or in Social and Behavioral Sciences. Course taught in English; knowledge of French not required. Optional weekly screening Mondays, 5-7pm.