The 2019 Global Media Festival

The Global Media Festival was a one-night screening of international shorts organized and presented by the students enrolled in my Global Media Cultures course during fall 2019. For the last four weeks of the course, students worked in groups to watch and analyze the shorts; write critical introductions and film reviews; and plan a promotionalContinue reading “The 2019 Global Media Festival”

A Revolution of One

This spring I had the opportunity to program a film screening at UC Santa Barbara’s Pollock Theater and chose La Revolución de los Alcatraces (2013), an award-winning documentary by Mexican filmmaker Luciana Kaplan. La Revolución tells the story of Eufrosina Cruz Mendoza, a native of Santa María Quiegolani, a small indigenous community in southern Oaxaca, Mexico.Continue reading “A Revolution of One”

Trains As Precarious Worlds, from Snowpiercer to La Bestia

Two trains have commanded significant attention this past summer: the Snowpiercer, the fictional train in Bong Joon-ho’s post-apocalyptic film, and “La Bestia”, the freight train travelling from Mexico’s southern border to Mexico City. The first holds the last survivors of a global climatic catastrophe; the second holds hundreds of Central Americans hoping to immigrate toContinue reading “Trains As Precarious Worlds, from Snowpiercer to La Bestia”

Video Cultures, Communities, and Circulation in the 21st Century

On February 1998, the New York Times decreed that Blockbuster Video had established itself as the main video rental outlet, pushing all other independent video retailers into marginal and niche markets. Fifteen years later, the closure of the last Blockbuster locations still in operation heralded the end of an era, where online streaming services hadContinue reading “Video Cultures, Communities, and Circulation in the 21st Century”

Telescopía, o ¿Cómo Ver El Cine Desde Lejos?

¿Qué significará ver el cine “desde lejos”? En este escrito quiero considerar cómo algo similar a lo que Franco Moretti ha llamado “la literatura vista desde lejos” (distant reading) en los estudios literarios podría funcionar en el estudio del cine. Si nuestro actual método para analizar películas es semejante al close reading, es decir, verContinue reading “Telescopía, o ¿Cómo Ver El Cine Desde Lejos?”

Telescoping, or Distant Reading for Film Studies

What would it mean to “distantly watch” films? In this post I am interested in considering how something akin to what Franco Moretti has called distant reading* in literary studies might function in film studies. If our current method of evidence gathering for film analysis is close reading—watching a film or a series of filmsContinue reading “Telescoping, or Distant Reading for Film Studies”

Introduction to the Problems of Film

As I mentioned in a previous post, this term I am taking an introductory grad course on digital humanities, and as part of it, I will be writing a series of posts relating this area of humanistic inquiry to the field of media studies. I have chosen to begin exploring these intersections by zeroing inContinue reading “Introduction to the Problems of Film”