We finished watching Othello yesterday in class. Of course, we watched the Kenneth Branagh adaptation. He is Mr. Shakespeare and has the best delivery.
I watched my students, which included the one who writes the entertaining reviews, for their reactions. It was surprising to note who connected to the tragedy and who didn't. This is my all boy class. Almost all were affected by the final outcome and one was moved to tears. We talked about how we have all experienced what can happen when people don't communicate effectively and directly, and listen to gossip. I suppose the discussion reminded me of my friend who made assumptions and abandoned me without allowing direct, clear, and tolerant communication.
I love teaching film study probably because I love watching films. It's fun to toss in some production technique between but the challenge and true enjoyment is creating a series of films with specific connections. My first theme was gothic films and I think I might revisit it for next fall's class since all the students who had it have either graduated or moved on. My line up then was Nosferatu, Rebecca, The Others, Jane Eyre, The Innocents, Wallace & Gromit: Curse of the Wererabbit, and the short film, Sandman. Since then, Crimson Peak has been released. I think it has all the classic markers of a gothic story plus Tom Hiddleston's butt. All my students are 17 or older but, as I teach in a public school, I'll need to skip that couple of steamy minutes which will detract from the creepy gothic-ness of the Guillermo del Toro film not one bit! I'd truly love to do a series on just his films but most are R rated and very intense. Maybe some day I'll manage to host a seminar featuring snippets and facts, or conduct post secondary class but until then, the complexities of Guillermo del Toro are just for me.