Focus On Film History

Display Schedule

Code Completion Credits Range Language Instruction Semester
311FOC Z 2 2h/W English winter

Subject guarantor


Name of lecturer(s)


Learning outcomes of the course unit

Students will be required to learn how to analyse and criticise films in a contextual and intertextual manner, as well as familiarising themselves with the auteurist method. I.e. the style and content of films by leading directors. The course will be supplemented and illustrated by the use of clips from films to which the students will be expected to apply historical and critical analyses. As the majority of students are concerned with practical filmmaking, they should also be able to make a connection between an academic approach to filmmaking and a practical one.

Mode of study


Prerequisites and co-requisites


Course contents

Although the course will present a panorama of world film history from the 1930s, it will not be a chronological list of names and events. Film history will be studied in a contextual and intertextual manner. This implies that each period, film, director, star etc, in general and particular, will be seen against their historical and artistic backgrounds, linking them to the other arts and influences, while seeking out the specificity of cinema. It will also consider the role of film criticism over the years in shaping the aesthetics of the art form.

Recommended or required reading

Film: Eye Witness Companion, Ronald Bergan (Dorling Kindersley)

The Oxford history of world cinema (Oxford University Press)

Film Theory and Criticism: Leo Braudy, Marshall Cohen (Oxford University Press)

What Is Cinema?: André Bazin (University of California Press)

Film History: An Introduction: David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson

Film Language: Christian Metz (Oxford University Press)

Theory of the film: Bela Balasz.

HollywooD from Vietnam to Reagan and Beyond. Robin Wood

How to read a film: James Monaco

Assessment methods and criteria

Attendance: Students are allowed to have two absences. Barring unforeseen circumstances, students should notify the instructor in advance.

Exceptional circumstances will be considered, but additional work will be required.

Participation: Students will be expected to contribute to in-class discussions. Each student needs to prepare a brief class topic report once per semester.

Completion policy: To complete the course, a student must comply with the attendance and participation requirements and write 2 to 3 pages on a course-related topic of their choice. The final paper to be sent on December 16, 2014.


  1. The Hollywood studio system of the 30´s and 40´s, the so-called "golden age of American commercial cinema, with special reference to each studio´s particularities, the establishment of genres and the star system.
  2. The impact of World War II on world cinema
  3. Italian Neo-realism and its influence.
  4. New Waves of the 60´s - France, Brazil, East Europe.
  5. New Hollywood and the rise of independents in the USA.
  6. Non-commercial „art“ cinema and the importance of film festivals from the 60´s to the present.
  7. The parallel impact of documentaries throughout the periods covered above.

Schedule for winter semester 2019/2020:

room 344
Room No. 7

(Lažanský palác)
(lecture parallel1)
Date Day Time Tutor Location Notes No. of paralel
Tue 10:40–12:15 Ronald BERGAN Room No. 7
Lažanský palác
lecture parallel1

Schedule for summer semester 2019/2020:

The schedule has not yet been prepared

The subject is a part of the following study plans