Film

Department of Communication Studies

Program Description

The Film Program offers interdisciplinary coursework in the areas of film production, history, theory, criticism, and writing. The Film major aims at developing a deeper understanding of the art and practice of film, its complex components, and the artists whose vision have inspired generations of filmmakers. All students are required to take a common core that provides a foundation for film criticism and production. After completing the core, students select either the film studies or film production track. Students are supervised by the Film Coordinator.

Degree Programs

BA in Film (Digital Film/Video Production)

BA in Film (Film Studies)

Minor in Film Studies

Career Possibilities

Videographer · Cinematographer · Production Coordinator · Production Assistant · Lighting Designer · Gaffer · Grip · Film/Video Director · Production Sound Mixer · Sound Editor · Screenwriter · Script Supervisor · Video Editor · Effects Editor · Independent Filmmaker · Film Critic

Contact Information

Jenny Stark, Film Coordinator
Mendocino Hall 5027
(916) 278-6285
Film Program Website

Faculty

ANKER, ANDREW

BUSS, STEVE

BUCKMAN, ALYSON

CRAFT, GEORGE

DONATH, JACKIE

FOSS-SNOWDEN, MICHELE

GEIGER, JASON

KOEGEL, RAYMOND

POMO, ROBERTO

STARK, JENNY

How to Read Course Descriptions

FILM 20A.     Audio Production. 2 Units

Corequisite(s): FILM 20B.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Introduction to the theory and practice of audio production in radio, television, film and recording applications.

Cross-listed: COMS 20A.

FILM 20B.     Audio Production Lab. 1 Unit

Corequisite(s): FILM 20A.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Experience in audio console operation, microphone selection and use, and audio recording in radio, television, film and recording applications.

Cross-listed: COMS 20B.

FILM 27A.     Digital Film/Video Production. 2 Units

Corequisite(s): FILM 27B.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Introduction to the techniques and aesthetics of digital film making. The course covers camera technique and cinematography.

Cross-listed: COMS 27A.

FILM 27B.     Digital Film/Video Production Lab. 1 Unit

Corequisite(s): FILM 27A.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Introduction to the techniques and aesthetics of digital film making. The course covers camera angles, basic lighting, framing, and non-linear editing techniques.

Cross-listed: COMS 27B.

FILM 97.     Introduction to Film Studies. 3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Examines cinematic techniques, styles, vocabulary, and discourses. Introduces different ways for writing about films and for working with a variety of cinematic terms. Film form and style will be studied by examining specific scenes in films from different genres, nations, and directors. Film used throughout the course will be selected from different historical periods.

Cross-listed: ENGL 97.

FILM 105.     Film Theory and Criticism. 3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Survey of film theory focusing on Auteurism, Class, Expressionism, Formalism, Genre, Gender, Narratology, Neorealism, Phenomonology, Post-Structuralism, Psychoanalysis, Realism, Semiology, Structuralism, and Third Cinema.

Cross-listed: ENGL 105.

FILM 121.     Media Aesthetics. 3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Overview and analysis of the primary aesthetic tools used to create messages in video and film. The basic properties of light, color, area, space, shape, sound, time and motion are defined and discussed as they relate to media production. Introduces students to the concepts and vocabulary necessary for effectively conceiving, producing or criticizing mediated messages. Designed primarily for students with interest in digital media. Provides a foundation for students working in media criticism.

Cross-listed: COMS 121.

FILM 124.     Writing Scripts for Film/Video. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): ENGL 1A and ENGL 20.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Developing narratives, documentaries, educational, promotional, and experimental short screenplays. Students are expected to develop a writing style and master screenwriting and audio/visual scripting formats. Scripts will be developed to be produced in advanced production courses: COMS/FILM 128 and COMS/FILM 185.

Cross-listed: COMS 124.

FILM 124F.     Avant-Garde Film. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): ENGL 97 or PHOT 102.

Term Typically Offered: Spring only

A survey of experimental films from the beginning of the cinema in the 1890s through today's avant garde. The course will emphasise film making as a means of personal, artistic expression and will pay particular attention to those aspects of cinema that are typically ignored or marginalized in mainstream Hollywood movies. Films we will study include those by: Melies, Porter, Richter, Leger, Cornell, Deren, Brackhage and Gehr.

Cross-Listed: INTD 124F.

FILM 128.     Non-Studio Video Production. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): FILM 20A, FILM 20B, FILM 27A and FILM 27B each with a grade of "B-" or better.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Production of video materials using portable cameras and recorders. Application of electronic field production and post-production techniques.

Cross-listed: COMS 128.

FILM 129.     Film and Video Production Management. 3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Spring only

Management and administration of the preproduction and production process. Course to include script breakdown, budgeting, scheduling, and other preproduction and production management skills needed for film and video production. Special attention on the history, development and current practices of the Production Manager.

Cross-listed: COMS 129.

FILM 130.     Staging and Lighting Digital Video. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): FILM 20A, FILM 20B, FILM 27A and FILM 27B each with a grade of "B-" or better.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Introduction to the aesthetics, concepts and techniques used to control lighting in digital video productions. Aspects of staging, blocking and composition in the context of studio and location lighting.

Cross-listed: COMS 130.

FILM 141.     Theory of Film/Video Editing. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): COMS/FILM 27A and COMS/FILM 27B with final posted grade of C or better.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Study of history and theory of film and video editing. Many films are viewed and discussed, examining how editing theory is put into practice.

Cross-listed: COMS 141.

FILM 155.     Contemporary World Cinema. 3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

A historical review of the development of major international film styles and themes. Theoretical and critical concepts derived from this study of international film and then used as the basis to analyze contemporary films of South America, Europe, India, East Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Emphasis is on both the development of formal film techniques and a comparison of the unique cultural values that shape the film narrative style.

Cross Listed: THEA 155; only one may be counted for credit.

FILM 185.     Senior Practicum in Video Production. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): COMS/FILM 124 with a final posted grade of C or better.

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Assignments in various phases of video production including creative use of camera, sound and lighting, editing, production design, production planning/management, and directing.

Cross-listed: COMS 185.

FILM 192.     Senior Seminar in Film. 3 Units

Prerequisite(s): Completion of the Film Studies core, and (GWAR Certification before Fall 09, or WPJ score of 70+, or at least a C- in ENGL 109M or ENGL 109W).

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Research seminar that provides an in-depth investigation of film as an art form, a medium of mass communication and a means of personal expression. Subject will vary according to instructor.

Cross-listed: COMS 192.