The films of Roman Polanski have attracted a world-wide audience and made him one of the most well known and best regarded contemporary directors. His acclaim spans from the early films of the 1950s, such as <Two Men and a Wardrobe> (1958)—directed while he was a student—to 2002’s <The Pianist>, winner of the Academy Award for Best Director, and most recently the controversial <The Ghost Writer> (2010) and claustrophobic <Carnage> (2011). This course will explore Polanski’s remarkable cosmopolitan oeuvre, which spans more than five decades. We will focus on Polanski’s most successful films, starting with his experimental Polish shorts, proceeding to his highly acclaimed English production <Repulsion>, then onto such Hollywood classics as <Rosemary’s Baby> and <Chinatown>. We’ll move from there to his post-Hollywood, multinational productions, including such films as <The Tenant> and <Frantic>, his 1990s films <Bitter Moon> and <Death and the Maiden>, and then! his lauded <The Pianist>, provocative <The Ghost Writer>, hyper-intense <Carnage>, and his newest, <Venus in Fur> (2013). The course will look into how Polanski’s movies adopt a number of different genres and aesthetic approaches to deal with the recurrent themes of solitude, victimization, and the idiosyncratic worldview of an isolated individual.
Varying topics relating to film in social contexts. Offered by resident or visiting faculty.