The History of World Cinema 1

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Code Completion Credits Range Language Instruction Semester
373DSVK1 ZK 3 6T Czech winter

Subject guarantor


Name of lecturer(s)


Learning outcomes of the course unit

The aim of the study is, in three semesters, to acquire a basic knowledge of the development of international cinematography from pre-history to the 1980s. This will include the most significant types, genres, directions, styles and personalities from the viewpoint of the whole scope of cinematography, including politcal, economic, artistic relationships, life-style and the like. Basic lecture information is supplemented by study of the course literature and individual viewings of recommended films.

The lectures and screenings are the fundamentals of the knowledge necessary for a better comprehension of related specialized lectures.

Mode of study

Lecture supplemented by film samples and study projects.

Information from lecture is supplemented by study of presented literature and individual „close reading“ of recommended films.

Prerequisites and co-requisites

Lectures are intended for 1st year students and only requires a knowledge of world history, geography, literature, visual arts, theatre and the like at the primary school level. A certain level of English is required for reading of subject literature and subtitles of presented films.

Course contents

Three-semester lectures in the history of world film, designed as a comprehensive introduction to the history of world film for students in the first and second years of study. The lecture attempts, in accordance with so called film history, to acquaint students, not only with the aesthetic and biographic levels of the history of cinema (artistically important artists and directions, their interaction, links to other types of art, etc.), but also with the socio-cultural, economic and institutional picture which the cinematography of that time, to a significant extent, is determined and which influenced by it. The course is supplemented with regular screenings of selected films.

Requirements for successful completion of the course:

  1. Required readings
  2. Viewing of compulsory films

An inseparable part of the lecture material is the viewing of 2-3 compulsory films, of which at least one will be shown at the school in the lecture. The others must be viewed by the students independent of the lecture. With the exception of some films shown during lectures, all compulsory films are available on VHS or DVD in the FAMU video library.

Be aware that the test or exam ne question will focus on the verification of knowledge of the compulsory films.

  1. Knowledge of the lecture material.

History up to 1945

  1. (3.10.) Early film (1895 - 1907) and the history of media

Lecturers: Tereza Czesany - Dvořáková, Jiří Forejt

Screening: Werner Nekes: Media Magica parts I., IV. and V, Films of the Brothers Lumiér and Georgese Méliése, films of the Brighton school (dvd)

  1. (10.10.) Documentary Film up to 1940

Lecturer: Martin Čihák

Screening: The Man with a Movie Camera (1929, Dziga Vertov, DVD)

2rd Film: The Fall of the Romanov Dynasty (1927, Esfir Šubová)

  1. (17.10) Soviet Assembled Cinema of the 1920s

Lecturer: Martin Čihák

Screening: Ten Days that Shook the World (1927, Sergej Eisenstein) National Film archives

2nd. film: Mother (1926, Vsevold Pudovkin)

  1. (24.10) Documentary Genres in the history of photography and their theory review

Lecturer: Michal Šimůnek

Screening: War Photographer (2001, Christian Frei)

  1. (31.10.) Germany 1920s

Lecturer: Tereza Czesany-Dvořáková

Screenings: The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920, Robert Wiene, DVD), Nosferatu (1922, Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau, DVD)

2nd. film: Metropolis (1927, Fritz Lang)

  1. (7.11.) Decade (1908-1920) in the USA and in Europe: Established narrative

Lecturer: Jan Bernard

Screening: Broken Blossoms (1919, David Wark Griffith) DVD + Sir Arne's Treasure (1919, Mauritz Stiller)

2nd and 3rd films: Intolerance (1916, David Wark Griffith); The Phantom Carriage (1921, Victor Sjostrom)

  1. (14.11.) USA of the 1920s

Lecturer: Jan Bernard

Screening: Greed (1924, Erich von Stroheim, VHS)

2nd film: The Cameraman (1927, Buster Keaton, DVD)

  1. (21.11) The Avant Garde of the 1920s and 30s

Lecturer: Martin Čihák

Screening 1-7: Walther Ruttmann: Opus 1, Hans Richter: Rhythmus 21, Hans Richter: Ghosts Before Breakfast, Oskar Fischinger: Study 7, Oskar Fischinger: Composition in Blue, Man Ray: The Return - The Reason, Fernand Leger: Mechanical Ballet, Rene Clair: Entr'acte,Walter Ruttmann: Opus-Hra světel Opus III (silent version, 1min, B/W), Oskar Fischinger: Studie No#.8 (B/W, sound version, 5min).

9 (28. 11.) Hollywood 1930-45. I (classic film figures)

Lecturer: Jan Bernard

Obligatory films: Citizen Kane 91941, Orson Wells, DVD)

2nd film: North against the South (1939, Victor Fleming)

  1. (5.12.) Hollywood 1930-1945 II. (Genre film)

Lecturer: Jan Bernard

Screening: Duck Soup (1933, Leo McCarey, DVD), Stagecoach (1939, John Ford) DVD

2nd Film: The Big Sleep (1946, Howard Hawks)

  1. (12.12) Transition to Sound, Color and Style in the 1930s

Lecturer: Vít. Janeček

Screening: The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933, Fritz Lang, DVD)

2nd film: Under the Roofs of Paris (1930, Rene Clair)

  1. (19.12.) France and Britain 1930-45

Lecturer: Helena Bendová

Screening: Le jour se lève („The day rises“; also known as Daybreak) (1939, Marcel Carné) from the NFA

2nd film: La Bête Humaine (1938, Jean Renoir)

Editing dokumentary:

Kevin Brownlow: Universal Horror ( History of horror), 1998, 96´ ; D.W. Griffith: Father of Film I-III, 1993, 150´; Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow, 1987; I'm King Kong!: The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper, 2005; Cecil B. DeMille: American Epic, 2004

Cinema Europe: The Other Hollywood

Martin Scorsese, Michael Henry Wilson: A Personal Journey with Martin Scorsese Through American Movies (A Century of filmu), 1995, 225´

Gangster Chronicles I, II, 1998,100´

Recommended or required reading


David Bordwell; Kristin Thompson: Film History: An Introduction. McGraw-Hill, 2003. česky: Dějiny filmu, AMU-LN, Praha 2007 nebo

W.W.Dixon-G.A. Foster: A Short History of Film , Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 2008

(příslušné kapitoly)

Co je fotografie, 150 let fotografie - katalog, Videopress, Praha 1989


obecné dějiny kinematografie:

David Cook: A history of narrative film. New York 1990.

Gilles Deleuze: Film 1. Obraz-pohyb. Praha 2000.

Gilles Deleuze: Cinema 2. Time-image. London 1989.

Enno Patalas; Ulrich Gregor: Dejiny filmu. Bratislava 1968.

Editing documents:

Kevin Brownlow: Universal Horror ( Historie hororu), 1998, 96´ ;; D.W. Griffith: Father of Film (D.W. Griffith ? Otec filmu I-III), 1993, 150´; Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow, 1987; I'm King Kong!: The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper, 2005; Cecil B. DeMille: American Epic, 2004

Cinema Europe: The Other Hollywood (Evropská kinematografie - Jiný Hollywood)

Martin Scorsese, Michael Henry Wilson: A Personal Journey with Martin Scorsese Through American Movies (Století filmu), 1995, 225´

Gangsterská kronika I, II, 1998,100´

Assessment methods and criteria

Each (of the three) semesters in the series is concluded with an oral exam in which one of the fundamental topics is tested. The second is supplementary and the third is about a film. (execept in very exceptional and significant cases, knowledge of the exact year of production of a film or phenomenon will not be required: +/- 5 year precision is sufficient, ex; half of the 20s, turn of the 40s to 50s, beginning of the 60s, etc.)

Attendance is a requirement for grading - attendance at screenings is required - 3 absences are allowed.


The aim of the lecture series and screenings is, in three semesters, to provide a basic knowledge of the development of world cinema from its pre-history to the 1980s, particularly the most important types, genres, trends, styles and figures from the viewpoint of overall cinematic depository, including political, economic and artistic contexts from the viewpoint of the lifestyle of the population, etc.

Lectures and screenings are the foundation of knowledge necessary for a better understanding of the contexts of specialized lectures.

Further information

This course is an elective for all AMU students

Schedule for winter semester 2019/2020:

room 124
Projection Room

(Lažanský palác)
(lecture parallel1)
room 107
Room No. 1

(Lažanský palác)
(lecture parallel1)
Date Day Time Tutor Location Notes No. of paralel
Wed 09:00–11:25 Veronika KLUSÁKOVÁ Projection Room
Lažanský palác
lecture parallel1
Wed 11:30–13:55 Veronika KLUSÁKOVÁ Room No. 1
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