From the poster for Black Girl by Ousmane Sembène, 1966

Ousmane Sembène: Feminism in African Francophone Cinema

Known as “the grandfather of African cinema,” Sembène created powerful female characters who challenged Western notions of gender and sexuality.

How Muppets Add Meaning to a Mass Media Christmas

The Muppet Christmas Carol works hard to get people to engage with Charles Dickens, but its real success is becoming part of the holiday itself.
Laurence Harvey and Frank Sinatra in John Frankenheimer's cold war thriller 'The Manchurian Candidate', 1962.

How Films Can Teach History

By viewing movies like The Manchurian Candidate, students can see one version of history that they can then use to dig deeper, explore more.
A film title lantern slide for Broncho Billy

Whatever Happened To The Male Movie Fan?

In the early days of the film industry, the fanzone was full of men and boys. Then the studios chased them all away.
The video game "Doom 3" is displayed on a computer and game store shelf August 4, 2004 in New York City

Roger Ebert vs. Video Games

The film critic’s unconsidered observation about Doom touched off a firestorm that continues to burn for gamers and digital media critics.
Kenneth Haigh and Mary Ure in the final scene of 'Look Back in Anger' at the Royal Court Theatre, London.

The Reality Behind Kitchen Sink Realism

The gritty dramas of the 1950s and 1960s revealed the bitterness and disillusionment of Britain's working class youth.
Elvis Presley is shown during a karate workout, as seen in the film 'This Is Elvis', 1981.

Elvis and American Karate

Presley’s embrace of martial arts resonated with working- and middle-class Americans who felt alienated from the US justice system.
From Dawn of the Dead

The Living Dead Embody Our Worst Fears

Zombie movies are scary fun, but they also help us examine our anxieties about contagious disease and unstoppable chaos.
A film still from The Batman

Batman: A Hero or a New ‘Mr. Hyde’?

The parallels between Bruce Wayne/Batman and Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde are examined through the lenses of Gothic literature and psychological symbolism.
A promotional image for Moon Over Harlem, 1939

How Film Ads Were Part of the Fight Against Segregation

In the Jim Crow era, Black film theaters were left out of the "first-run" distribution channels. Theater owners used creativity to attract their audiences.