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Global Film Musicals

One of my classes this quarter is Global Film Musicals. It's taught by the guy I came to the University of Chicago to study with, and it looks like it'll be lots of fun, despite the weird formatting that caused the registrar to short out and list it with an entirely fictional meeting time in the course catalog. But all that's been ironed out now. It turns out that the class meets twice a day for six weeks, leaving the other four weeks free to devote to our final projects. The morning session runs from 9:00 to 10:20, and the afternoon session runs from 3:00 to 4:20. Lest you recoil in horror at this prospect, I will add that one of these sessions each day will be a discussion session, but one session, we'll watch a Global Film Musical.

Originally, we were going to spend the morning sessions discussing, and the afternoon sessions watching movies. However, one member of the class, who didn't realize what the schedule was going to be (because no one actually thought to mention it anywhere), can't make Tuesday mornings. So, we've been debating how to schedule the movies and discussions to make it worthwhile for everyone. We'll be watching two movies a week, which will be nifty, and it got me thinking about what time of day is best for watching movies in class. I can see merits to both a 9:00 and a 3:00 screening, but I'm wondering what you guys might think. . .

Poll #902371 Quickie Quiz!

So, when would you want to watch the movie?

9:00 -- Who wants to, yecch, think at nine in the morning?
3:00 -- Bleh. . . been a long day, low blood sugar, let's turn the academic brain off and watch a movie!
9:00 -- Better to see the movie before you discuss it.
3:00 -- After the discussion, you'll appreciate the movie more.
9:00 -- Other reason
3:00 -- Other reason


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 7th, 2007 11:38 pm (UTC)
Ooh, a poll before bed!

Ok, I'd actually far rather watch a movie in the afternoon but I went with 9am, because I do think it makes more sense to see it before discussing it. The other option, since you say you'll be watching two movies a week, is to watch in the afternoon and discuss it at the next meeting. But I could have misunderstood - you do have some weird scheduling!

It sounds like a very interesting course. I look forward to hearing about it! But won't they have to be pretty short films to fit in an hour and twenty minutes?
Jan. 8th, 2007 01:41 pm (UTC)
Most of the films are pretty old, so I think they will fit into our time slot. I do know that at least one of them is four hours long, so maybe we'll only watch clips of that one.
Jan. 8th, 2007 02:00 am (UTC)
I put 9:00 thinking that if I saw the movie at 3:00 I'd forget everything by the time I had to discuss it the next morning, but thinking it over I'd almost rather discuss it before I saw it. Maybe I'm just lazy, but I might get more out of it if I knew what to look for. I wish they had taught literature that way, too, instead of just making a bunch of kids read Tess of the D'Urbervilles cold and then guess what was supposed to be important about it.
Jan. 8th, 2007 01:43 pm (UTC)
When I read Tess of the D'Urbervilles, I thought it was primarily an excercise in making-it-worse. No matter what happened to Tess, she could always manage to make her own situation much worse. Kind of like Anna Karenina. I never did manage to muster much sympathy for either heroine.
Jan. 8th, 2007 02:53 am (UTC)
You pay tuition to watch movies? For real?

Just kidding. I have movie ADD... I have to watch them when its dark outside otherwise there are too many things I'd rather be doing. And even then they usually fail to hold my attention.

Are you going to discuss them before or after? I'd want it close... watch it in the morning and discuss in the afternoon?
Jan. 8th, 2007 01:45 pm (UTC)
I don't pay tuition any more. The school is paying it for me. Yay!

We haven't quite decided what we're going to do, exactly. I think Tuesday will probably be a "screening first" day, because of the girl who can't make Tuesday mornings. I guess we'll see how that works and then decide about Thursdays.
(Deleted comment)
Jan. 8th, 2007 01:46 pm (UTC)
I figure, if I have to present myself at nine, a movie would be a good inducement. And I have a little break before the 3:00 session, so that would be a good time for a rest and a snack.

You'll get details as the course goes on. Relatively soon, we'll be watching Volga, Volga, which was Stalin's favorite movie musical.
Jan. 8th, 2007 04:28 pm (UTC)
I once had a screenwriting class where the sessions were 85 minutes long, giving us juuust enough time to run in and watch a movie and discuss it in the following class period. I really liked two answers in your poll though, since I can see valid reasons to discuss a movie before and after viewing it (eventually I decided I'd rather watch a movie at 9 a.m. and discuss it later).

What our class ended up doing was having a ten minute "preview" discussion led by our instructor, perhaps even a week or so before the film. He'd bring up obvious things like, "This is film noir..." or "You should look for..." and give us a chance to research what we needed. Then we'd watch the film one day and come back and discuss it during the next class period. The "preview" was very helpful to guide us into the right mindset and make sure we all paid attention to certain important elements. But the discussion was best left till after everyone had seen the movie and could comment together on specifics. (IMHO)
Jan. 9th, 2007 03:27 am (UTC)
I think I pretty much lean that way, too. We have class tomorrow, so we'll start experimenting and see where we end up.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )


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