Santa Barbara City College, Film Studies Department
Film Studies 101: Introduction to Film
Online Course
Instructor: Nico Maestu


Welcome to the online version of the Film Studies 101: Introduction to Film course at Santa Barbara City College.

You can access a print version of the syllabus here (PDF file) *you may need Adobe Reader®

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Most communications for this class between you and the instructor will take place by email. You will receive regular emails about the content of the class and the assignments at your SBCC Pipeline account (click here). Be sure to check it often so that you do not miss any class information.

This class is not fully on Canvas. We will be using a simple website on which you can access the lecture presentations, film clips, links to external websites, schedule, and more.

The course is completely online > you will NOT need to come to the Santa Barbara City College campus for any part of the class.

On the first day of the semester you will receive an email with information about the class site, the link to the site, the username and the password. Be sure to check your email that day.

All emails for this class should be sent to:

In the subject of the email, type:

  • FirstName LastName, your CRN number, what this email is about

  • ex: Subject: John Doe, 33883, Question


When you first log in to the class on the first day of the semester you will be able to plan your film rentals for the session.

You will need to view one film on you own per unit.

For the first week of the session, here is the list of films from which you must select ONE to watch by the first Friday of the semester. You can plan ahead to rent and/or purchase one of the following films. More information will be available on the class site.

Watch ONE of the following films by Friday June 30:

  • The Player (Robert Altman, 1993)
  • Day and Night (Francois Truffaut, 1973)
  • The Bad and the Beautiful (Vincente Minnelli, 1952)
  • Adaptation (Spike Jonze, 2002)
  • Bartin Fink (Joel Coen, 1991)
  • Sunset Boulevard (Billy Wilder, 1950)
  • In a Lonely Place (Nicholas Ray, 1950)
  • Living in Oblivion (Tom DiCillo, 1995)
  • 8 ½ (Federico Fellini, 1963)
  • Singin' in the Rain (Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly, 1952)
  • Mulholland Dr. (David Lynch, 2001)
  • Sullivan's Travels (Preston Sturges, 1941)
  • The Day of the Locust (John Schlesinger, 1975)
  • Contempt (Jean-Luc Godard, 1963)
  • Irma Vep (Olivier Assayas, 1996)

Watch ONE of the following films by Sunday July 2:

Watch the following film (for most units you will have a selection of films to choose from, but for Unit 2, it is recommended that you watch Following > Unit 3 explains the form of this film): 

    • Following (Christopher Nolan, 1998) > available in the LRC at the front desk (#135B)

If you cannot acquire Following, then you may choose one of the following films:

    • El Mariachi (Robert Rodriguez, 1992)
    • Tangerine (Sean Baker, 2015)
    • Welcome to the Dollhouse (Todd Solondtz, 1995)
    • The Brothers McMullen (Edward Burns, 1995)
    • Stranger than Paradise (Jim Jarmusch, 1984)
    • Tarnation (Jonnathan Couette, 2003)
    • Primer (Shane Carruth, 2004)
    • Last Days (Gus Van Sant, 2005)
    • Slacker (Richard Linklater, 1991)
    • Once (John Carney, 2006)
    • OId Joy (Kelly Reichardt, 2006)
    • Humpday (Lynn Shelton, 2009)