This course traces the development of Japanese film, from silent movies to the present, including anime. In addition to covering the works of famous directors (Ozu, Mizoguchi, Kurosawa, Oshima, et al), the birth of the Pure Film movement, Japanese imperialism, the American Occupation, and the postwar “new wave” and the role of film criticisms may be examined in this course. This exploration of Japanese cinema will offer a perspective on the genre’s development in specific socio-cultural-historical contexts. No prior knowledge of Japanese history, language or film is presumed. All readings on the course are in English, and the films have English subtitles.