Crime Film Documentaries

James R. Elkins

Course Evaluation

Your grade in the course will be based on two papers: One paper should focus on a selected film (the "film paper"). A second paper should focus on the course more generally by placing the course films in a larger context (the "course paper"). Each paper constitutes 50% of the grade for the course.

For the "film paper," you should, consider the following:

--the narrative told in the film,

--critical, academic, and scholarly commentary on the film,

--he legal issues presented in the film,

--film critics commentary on the film,

--books written by or about the defendant(s), and books written about the film,

--significant web-based material on the film (an effort to identify this material will be made in Instructor's Notes).

On the "course paper": you will want to address the course films (and the course as it unfolds in our conversations about the films) from a perspective that places the individual films in a broader context. E.g., what kind of prosecutors do we find in these films? What kind of defense lawyers? What role do the judges in the cases play? What do the films tell us about the justice to be found in the criminal justice system?

For the "film paper" you may elect to work with a fellow olleague in the course. If you elect to work with a colleague, the grade you receive for the "film paper" will be based on your collective effort; both members of the team will receive the same grade. Obviously, if you pursue the "film paper" as a team project, the resulting paper should reflect the work expected of a team in contrast to a single individual.

You may, of course, chose to work on the "film paper"alone. I have no preference whether you work alone or with a colleague.

If you want to pursue a writing project for the course other than the proposed two papers--"film paper" and "course paper"--I am willing to consider alternative writing projects.. Alternative projects must be approved by the instructor.