ITAL261 History of Italian Cinema, Tina Fallani, Spring 2020 | SACI College of Art & Design Florence

ITAL261 History of Italian Cinema, Tina Fallani, Spring 2020

Required Texts

In compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act Textbook Provision, SACI provides, when possible, the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) and retail price of required and recommended reading. Note: Students are not required to purchase the texts below; they are available at all times in the SACI Worthington Library.

  • Peter Bondanella: Italian Cinema: From Neorealism to Present, Continuum Third Edition, 2001.
    ISBN: 9780826412478 (Retail price: To Be Determined)
  • Readers of articles and reviews (in the library)

Assignments

· Attendance to lectures and screenings

· One midterm paper and a final test (essay questions)

· Oral presentations

Grades

· 30% class participation

· 30% midterm paper/oral presentations

· 40% final test

Attendance to class and screenings is mandatory! (Unjustified absences as well as being late for class, will result in the lowering of the grade.)

Expectations

Come to class. Be on time. Do the homework. Engage in discussion. Develop your own perspective. You are expected to have completed all the readings and critically engage in dialogue with the material each time you step into the classroom. You are expected to carefully watch the film and take notes during the showing. You are expected to work together as groups, equalizing participation among your members. You are expected to do research, be friendly, and think constantly.

Two unexcused absences from class will count as a loss of one third grade point: example, A becomes A-. Excused absences are: a doctor’s note, fingerprinting for Permit of Stay, absences for administrative reasons like official school meetings.

Structure of Class - Presentations

Prepare a plot summary of the film. Point out the main points of the articles. If you are unsure about a concept, we will discuss it in class. Your investigation will explore the social, political, technological, industrial, aesthetic, and cultural elements that relate to the film (including production and reception). You can engage with popular and scholarly sources, books and periodicals, DVDs and websites, trailers and advertisements, statistics and movie reviews and any historical document that informs us about the period. Select a few clips from the film to illustrate your argument. After presenting your analysis, ask questions of your classmates.
Use your notes taken during the film to assist you in recalling information and thoughts.

To prepare for a discussion of the film, research these questions to put the film in a broader context:
1. Prepare a brief biography of the director.
2. What is the historical context of the film?
3. What were the conditions of the film's production?
4. What elements of the film itself are of artistic importance?
5. Cultural and social importance?
6. Historical importance?
7. Analyze each character of the film.
8. What are the main issues that the film deals with?
9. What was the reception of the film?
10. How was the film reviewed when it opened?
11. How did it do at the box office?
12. Does the film engage with any particular technology or storytelling aesthetics?
13. How does it compare to the other films we have viewed?
14. Prepare a few questions for class discussion.

Choose a few clips to anchor discussion of some of the above topics. Make sure your approach to the film has a point. Do research, make an argument, and support it with well-chosen evidence and supplementary material. If members of your group disagree on a point or two, present it in the context of your report. Disagreement is productive and natural.
If you feel something is significant, repeat it without hesitation. What's better than repetition is amplification to lead the discussion into a larger concept or issue.

Schedule

 Week 1

Tuesday, January 14
Introduction to the course.

Weekly Screening: L’ULTIMO BACIO, Gabriele Muccino, 2000 (115 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Film reviews and essays.

Week 2

Tuesday, January 21
Lecture on: L'Ultimo Bacio and class discussion.

Weekly Screening: THE LAST KISS, Tony Goldwyn, 2006.

Weekly Assignments: Film reviews and essays.

Week 3

Tuesday, January 28
Class discussion.

Weekly Screening: OPEN CITY, Roberto Rossellini 1945 (100 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Bondanella: Chapter 3 (pages 61-71).

Marcus, Rossellini’s Open City: The Founding.

Week 4

Tuesday, February 4
Lecture on: Open City

Weekly Screening: THE MIRACLE OF SANT'ANNA, Spike Lee 2008 (160 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Film reviews.

Week 5

Tuesday, February 11
Class discussion.

Weekly Screening: THE BICYCLE THIEF, Vittorio De Sica 1948 (93 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Bondanella: Chapter 3 (pages 85-89).

Marcus, De Sica's The Bicycle Thief: Casting Shadows on the Visionary City.

Week 6

Tuesday, February 18
Lecture on: The Bicycle Thief.

Weekly Screening: THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS: Gabriele Muccino 2006 (117 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Film reviews.

Week 7

Tuesday, February 25
MIDTERM EXAM

   

Week 8

MIDTERM BREAK (February 29 - March 8)

   

Week 9

Tuesday, March 10
Student presentation and class discussion.

Weekly Screening: LA DOLCE VITA, Federico Fellini 1959 (180 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Bondanella: Chapter 9 (pages 259 and 285-292); Burke, La Dolce Vita.

Week 10

Tuesday, March 17
Student presentation and class discussion

Weekly Screening: LA GRANDE BELLEZZA, Paolo Sorrentino 2013 (142 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Film reviews.

Week 11

Tuesday, March 24
Student presentation and class discussion.

Weekly Screening: CINEMA PARADISO, Giuseppe Tornatore, 1988 (123 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Bondanella: Chapter 12 (focus on Tornatore)
Marcus: "Giuseppe Tornatore’s Cinema Paradiso and the Art of Nostalgia"
Essay by Barbara Poyner, film reviews

Week 12

Tuesday, March 31
Student presentation and class discussion.

Weekly Screening: LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL, Roberto Benigni, 1998 (118 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Bondanella: Chapter 12 (focus on Benigni)
Marcus: "The Seriousness of Humour in Roberto Benigni's Life is Beautiful"
Brian Logan: "Does this man really think the Holocaust was a joke?"
Film reviews

Week 13

Tuesday, April 7
Student presentation and class discussion.

Weekly Screening: IO NON HO PAURA, Gabriele Salvatores, 2003 (108 minutes).

Weekly Assignments: Film reviews and essays.

Week 14

Tuesday, April 14
Student presentation and class discussion.

TBA

Week 15

Tuesday, April 21
FINAL EXAM

 

General Safety & Emergency Instructions

Click here for a pdf of SACI's General Safety & Emergency Instructions.

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