Filmography: A Short Guide to Sociology and Film


1. INTRODUCTION

We live in a mediated world saturated with film and video; and most films suggest ideas about the society we live in. Films provide a good resource for sociology.

Look at Jean-Anne Sutherland & Kathryn Feltey Cinematic Sociology: Social Life in Film (2nd ed, 2012) Pine Forge Press, which shows how to use contemporary films to develop the sociological imagination and provides an excellent filmography by theme.
See also:
Damian Cox & Michael P Levine (2012) Thinking Through Film. Wiley-Blackwell

Wanda Teays (2012) Seeing the Light: Exploring Ethics Through Movies. Wiley Blackwell

Roberta Secret (2012) World Affairs in Foreign Films.  McFarland

Norman K Denzin (1995) The Cinematic Society: The Voyeur’s Gaze. Sage

 

A very valuable book to help you make sense of film is: James Monaco How To Read a Film (2008) 4th edition.
See also:

Sociology goes to the Movies

http://www.thesociologicalcinema.com/blog/sociology-goes-to-hollywood-or-why-we-must-use-hollywood-clips-in-our-sociology-classes

The Sociological Cinema at

http://www.thesociologicalcinema.com/

The Sociological Cinema is edited and published by Valerie Chepp, Paul Dean, and Lester Andrist, a team of three public sociologists. “As graduate student colleagues and close friends in the Sociology Department at the University of Maryland, we launched this site in September 2010 as a way to facilitate using popular culture and video to teach and learn about sociology”.

Sociology through Documentary Film

http://sociologythroughdocumentaryfilm.pbworks.com/w/page/17194965/FrontPage

 

 

2: FILMS MENTIONED IN THE BOOK

 

Below is a list/index of films mentioned in this book with page indicated where it is mentioned:

Amazing Grace (2006) dir Michael Apted, p187

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0454776/

Amisted (1997) dir Stephen Spielberg, p187

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0118607/

Capturing the Friedmans (2003) dir Andrew Jarecki, p 224

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0342172/

City of God (2002) dir Fernando Meirelles, Katia Lund, p63

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0317248/

The Fourth World (2011) dir Mark Volkers, p 63

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2211047/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Groundhog Day (1993) dir Harold Ramis, p 126

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0118607/

Life in a Day (2011) dir Ken McDonald
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1687247/

Love Actually (2011) dir Richard Curtis, p11

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0314331/
The Lives of Others (2006) dir Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, p77

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0405094/

Metropolis (1927) Fritz Lang, p44
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0017136/

Modern Times (1936) dir Charles Chaplin, p 44

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0027977/

Q2P (2006) dir Paromita Vohra, p 16

http://www.oberlin.edu/stupub/ocreview/2007/11/09/arts/Vohras_Q2P_Film_Explores_S.html

Rashomon (1950) dir Akira Kurosawa p170

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0042876/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

The Salt of the Earth (Sebastião Salgado) (2014) dir Wim Wenders p188
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3674140/

Sliding Doors (1998) dir Peter Howitt, p139. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120148/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Slumdog Millionaire (2008) dir Danny Boyle, p63
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120148/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Stranger than Fiction (2006) dir Marc Foster, p125

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0420223/

The Truman Show (1998) dir Peter Weir p77

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120382/

Where to Invade Next (2015) dir Michael Moore,p224
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4897822/

12 Years a Slave (2011) dir Steve McQueen p187
ttp://www.imdb.com/title/tt2024544/?ref_=nv_sr_1

3: SOME INTERNATIONAL FILMS / FOREIGN FILMS

Generally, see:

Roberta Secret (2012) World Affairs in Foreign Films.  McFarland

One important entrance to global sociology is to watch and analyse films from distinctively different cultures.

Katarzyna Marciniak & Bruce Bennett (2016) Teaching Transnational Cinema: Politics and Cinema, Routledge

 

Here is a select listing:
Afghanistan, Osama (2003) Siddiq Barmak

Argentina, Wild Tales, Damián Szifrón, director

China, Beijing Bicycle (2002) Wang Xiaoshuai

Estonia, Tangerines, Zaza Urushadze, director

Georgia, Corn Island, George Ovashvili, director

India, Water (2005) Deepa Mehta

Japan, (2009) Tokyo Sonata Kiyoshi Kurosawa

Mauritania, Timbuktu, Abderrahmane Sissako, director

Netherlands, Accused, Paula van der Oest, director

Poland, Ida, Paweł Pawlikowski, director

Russia, Leviathan, Andrey Zvyagintsev, director

Rwanda (2004) Hotel Rwanda Terry George

South Africa (2005) Tsotsi Gavin Hood

Sweden, Force Majeure, Ruben Östlund, director

Uganda: (2007)War Dance, Sean Fine, Andres Nix Fine

Venezuela, The Liberator, Alberto Arvelo, director

 

For some classic books on the role of cross-cultural global film and ethnography, see:
David MacDougall, Transcultural Cinema (1998)
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Transcultural-Cinema-David-MacDougall/dp/0691012342/ref=pd_sim_14_2?ie=UTF8&dpID=41TcDEpVPDL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_AC_UL160_SR107%2C160_&refRID=06EKR21Q8EE0DW99ZB4A
Jay Ruby: Picturing Culture: Explorations in Film and Ethnography (2000)

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Picturing-Culture-Explorations-Film-Anthropology/dp/0226730999/ref=pd_sim_14_4?ie=UTF8&dpID=41TOLPbSqwL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_AC_UL160_SR109%2C160_&refRID=16D54G9AVDCAZ6S68XYT

4: SOME FILMS OF SOCIOLOGICAL INTEREST

This is a list of popular films of sociological interest – there are thousands more! You can probe more on

The Internet Movie Database: www.imdb.com

Bodies and Cyborgs

The Fly, David Cronenberg, 1986

Frankenstein. James Whale, 1931

Terminator, James Cameron, 1984

Capitalism: see economics

Crime and violence

There is a chronological list of crime films, organized by decade on Wikipedai at:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_crime_films_of_the_2010s

Top 25 Crime films of all time? For one list, see:
http://www.theguardian.com/film/series/the-crime-25

See also:
Nicole Rafer & Michelle Brown Criminology goes to the Movies (2011) NYU Press
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Criminology-Goes-Movies-Popular-Culture/dp/0814776523/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1460558246&sr=1-1&keywords=Criminology++goes+to+the+movies

A few classics:

M, Fritz Lang, 1931

Twelve Angry Men, Sydney Lumet, 1957

Reservoir Dogs, Quentin Tarantino, 1992

The Godfather, Francis Ford Coppola, 1972

Goodfellas, Martin Scorcese, 1990

Class

See Working Class cinema at
https://libcom.org/library/working-class-cinema-video-guide

Harlan County USA, Barbara Kopple, 1976

Blue Collar, Paul Schrader, 1978

Titanic, James Cameron, 1997

Gosford Park , Robert Altman, 2001

This is England, Shane Meadows, 2002

 

Disability

 

Two wide ranging list of films about disability can be found at:

http://www.imdb.com/list/ls056904626/

http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054644606/

The Elephant Man, David Lynch, 1980

Sick: The Life and Death of Bob Flanegan Supermasochist, Kirby Dick,1997

Inside I’m Dancing, Damien O’Donnell, 2004.

Murderball Henry, Alex Rubin, 2005.

The Diving bell and the Butterfly Julian Schnabel’s (2007)

 

Documentary

50 Documentary films you need to see:

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2016/mar/27/50-best-documentaries-alex-gibney-joshua-oppenheimer-james-marsh

Documentary Films

See: http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/watch-online/

Popular films about the city: see

https://nextcity.org/daily/entry/the-top-12-movies-about-urbanism

 

Some classics are:

Nanook of the North, Robert J. Flaherty, 1922

Bowling for Columbine, Michael Moore, 2002

Freaks, Tod Browning, 1932
Drug use
Classics include:
Reefer Madness, Louis J. Gasnier, 1936
Trainspotting, Danny Boyle, 1996
Traffic, Steven Soderbergh, 2000

See a longer listing at:
http://whatculture.com/film/15-best-movies-about-drugs-and-addiction-in-cinema-history?page=2

 

Dying and Bereavement

Shadowlands, Richard Attenborough, 1993

Away from Her, Sarah Polley, 2007

A Single Man, Tom Ford , 2009
Economics

Films on the 2008 Financial Crash include:

Inside Job (2010) dir Charles Ferguson

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1645089/

Capitalism: A Love Story (2009) dir Michael Moore

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1232207/

Too Big To Fail (2011) dir Curtis Hanson

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1742683/

The Flaw (2010) dir David Sinton

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1787810/

As well as

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005) dir Alex Ribney

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1016268/

Education
Kes, Ken Loach, 1969

If.., Lindsay Anderson, 1968

Dead Poet’s Society, Peter Weir, 1989

The History Boys, Nicholas Hytner, 2006

The Class, Laurent Cantent 2008

 

Environment

There are several listings of environmental films: see

For Documentary Films on the environment, see:

http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/category/environment/

For fiction films on the environment, see:
http://ecohearth.com/eco-zine/arts-and-culture/1625-green-movies-best-environmental-films-fictional-features.html

Top Ten Environmental films of all time

http://www.mnn.com/green-tech/research-innovations/blogs/top-10-environmental-films-of-all-time

15 Green Movies

http://grist.org/article/movies/

 

A classic documentary is

Al Gore An Inconvenient Truth (2006)

See also:
Erin Brockovitch, Steven Soderbergh, 2000

Everyday interaction
Being There, Hal Ashby, 1979

Zelig, Woody Allen, 1983

Groundhog Day, Harold Ramis, 1993

Stranger than Fiction, Marc Foster (2006)


Family life

Life is Sweet, Mike Leigh, 1990

In the Bedroom, Todd Field, 2001

American Beauty, Sam Mendes, 1999

Little Miss Sunshine, Valerie Faris , 2006

The Kids are Alright , Lisa Cholodenko 2010

Gay: see Queer, Gender
Gender and Feminism

10 Movies about gender, sexism and equality http://www.imdb.com/list/ls074185633/
10 films that pioneered the way
http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/news-bfi/lists/10-great-feminist-films

15 best recent (2015) feminist films

http://msmagazine.com/blog/2015/12/21/the-15-or-so-best-feminist-films-of-2015/

 

The Celluloid Closet, Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, 1995

Fabulous, The story of Queer Cinema, Lisa Ades , 2006

Stand by Me, Rob Reiner, 1986

Thelma and Louise, Ridley Scott, 1991

Boys don’t cry, Kimberley Pierce, 1999

Brokeback Mountain, Ang Lee, 2005

 

Holocaust

The Pianist, Roman Polanski, 2002

Schindler’s List, Steven Spielberg, 1993

 

Music: A musical view of society
The Wizard of Oz, Victor Fleming, 1939

West Side Story, Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise, 1961

Cabaret, Bob Fosse, 1972

Chicago, Rob Marshall, 2002

Sweeney Todd, Tim Burton, 2007

 

Queer: see also Gender and Feminism

 

See The British Film Institute List of Top 30 LGBTQ films: at

http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/news-bfi/features/30-best-lgbt-films-all-time

 

I would add:

Pride, 2014 dir Matthew Marcus

 

Race and racism

 

Two Lists of Major Films about Race

 

See: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls003616976/

see: http://www.tasteofcinema.com/2015/25-great-movies-about-racism-that-are-worth-your-time/3/
Classics include:
To Kill a Mockingbird, Robert Mulligan, 1962

The Long Walk Home, Richard Pearce, 1990

Crash, Paul Haggis, 2004

Malcolm X, Spike Lee, 1992

Do the Right Thing, Spike Lee, 1989

Mississippi Burning, Alan Parker, 1988


Refugees and Migration

 

A list of films (72 of them )about immigrants and migration can be found at:
http://www.imdb.com/list/ls051658814/

 

See also:
https://strengtheningasylum.wordpress.com/2015/10/21/13-powerful-films-about-refugees-you-need-to-see/

https://uk.pinterest.com/uscri/movies-and-films-about-refugees-and-immigrants/

https://mubi.com/lists/films-about-immigrants

 

 

Relationships

 

Brief Encounters, David Lean, 1945

A Streetcar named desire, Elia Kazan, 1951

Fear Eats the Soul, Rainer Wernder Fassbinder, 1974

Annie Hall, Woody Allen, 1977

When Harry met Sally, Rob Reiner, 1989

The Human Stain, Robert Benton, 2003

 

Poverty

 

The Grapes of Wrath, John Ford, 1940

Ermanno Olmi’s The Tree of wooden clogs , 1978

Angela’s Ashes, Alan Parker, 1999

Religious bigotry
Inherit the Wind, Stanley Kramer, 1960

Elmer Gantry, Richard Brooks, 1960

Futures? Science fiction
Metropolis, Fritz Lang, 1927

2001: A Space Odyssey, Stanley Kubrick, 1968

Blade Runner, Ridley Scott, 1982

Back to the Future, Robert Zemeckis, 1985

The Matrix, Andy and Larry Wachowski, 1999

Slavery & total institutions
One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Milos Forman, 1975

Das Boot, Wolfgang Petersen, 1981

The Shawshank Redemption, Frank Darabont, 1994

Amistad, Stephen Spielberg , 1997

 

Sports

Hoop Dreams, Steve James, 1994

Remember the Titans, Boaz Yakin, 2000

Bend It Like Beckham, Gurinder Chadha, 2002

The Fan, Tony Scott, 1996
Surveillance

There are several substantial listings of ‘surveillance films’: see

http://www.surveillance-studies.net/SSN/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/List_surveillance_feature_films.pdf

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/gallery/surveillance-cinema-14-movies-featuring-566300/1-v-for-vendetta

Classic films are:
1984 – there are two versions:
Gattaca (2007)
Minority Report (2002)
The Net (1995)

The Lives of Others (2006)

The Truman Show (1998)

V for Vendeatta dir James McTeigue

Terrorism

Films on 9/11

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/8753226/The-10-most-significant-films-about-the-September-11-attacks.html
For a listing see:

http://www.imdb.com/list/ls000912041/

Paradise Now (2005) Hany Abu-Assad
The Battle for Algiers, 1966 Gillo Potecorvo

Munich (205) Steven Spielberg

United 93 ( (2006) Paul Greengrass

Urban life and Community- the Classics
Sunset Boulevard, Billy Wilder, 1950

On the Waterfront, Elia Kazan, 1954

Taxi Driver, Martin Scorcese, 1976

Manhattan, Woody Allen, 1979

Paris, Texas, Wim Wenders, 1984

Blue Velvet, David Lynch, 1986

Tokyo Story, Yasujiro Ozu, 1953

Utopias /Dystoppias

http://www.thehollywoodnews.com/2014/08/11/thns-top-10-utopia-dystopia-movies/
http://www.fandango.com/movie-photos/famous-utopias-in-sci-fi-movies-925

 

Things to come (1936)
The Time Machine (1960)
1984
Children of Men dir Alfonos Cuaron

Youth cultures

 

Rebel without a cause, Nicholas Ray, 1955

Les Quatre Cent Coups, François Truffaut, 1959

A Clockwork Orange, Stanley Kubrick, 1971

Saturday Night Fever, John Badham, 1977

Gregory’s Girl, Bill Forsyth, 1981

Samson and Deliah, Warwick Thorton, 2010

 

War

 

All Quiet on the Western Front

The Deer Hunter, Michael Cimino, 1978

Saving Private Ryan, Stephen Spielberg, 1998

 

Afghanistan

Kandahar (2001) dir Mohsen Makhmalbaf

Osama (2003) dir Siddiq Barmak

The Kite Runner (2007) dir Marc Foster

United 93 (2006) Paul Greengrass

World Trade Center (2006) dir Oliver Stone

 

For other examples of sociological theory applied to Hollywood film clips, see these examples: