FLM 200: The MSU Film Collective

We are the professors, students, filmmakers, screenwriters, and cinéphiles at MSU who gather weekly in the course FLM 200 to watch and discuss good films. In the spirit of the Cinémathèque française and the generation of film critics and French New Wave directors it inspired, our collective abides by the principle that good film writing and good filmmaking (and just plain good living) begin with serious film watching.

Supported by the Mechanic Family Film Studies Endowment Fund


This semester’s Film Collective program engages the world of film festivals. The films and their presenters will help us to consider how the institution of the film festival has shaped the possibilities of cinema as a global medium—from the 1930s through the present day. These films surprised audiences, created controversy, and provoked revelations at festivals. Many of them mark turning points in the history of world cinema.

All screenings will take place in B122 Wells Hall at 7pm. The series is free and open to all.

9/8 – Mädchen in Uniform (dir. Leontine Sagan, 1931)

Presented by McKayla Sluga

At an all-girls boarding school, Manuela falls in love with a teacher, to terrific consequences.

9/15 – Swoon (dir. Tam Kalin, 1992)

Presented by Ellen McCallum

The true story of lovers Richard Loeb and Nathan Leopold Jr., who kidnapped and murdered a child in the early 1920s for kicks. The plot covers the months before the crime, the investigation, trial and final fate of the two men.

9/22 – Zero Patience (dir. John Greyson, 1993)

Presented by Dan Smith

An immortal, bigoted, unethical taxidermist is doing research on “Patient Zero”, the gay flight attendant who allegedly was the first to bring AIDS to North America, for a museum show about contagious diseases, helped by the man’s ghost.

9/29 – Kattumaram (dir. Swarnavel Pillai, 2019)

Panel discussion with Ellen McCallum and Amol Pavangadkar

A conservative uncle tries to come to terms with his niece’s romantic relationship with a woman

10/6– Marty (dir. Delbert Mann, 1955)

Presented by Bill Vincent

A middle-aged butcher and a school teacher who have given up on the idea of love meet at a dance and fall for each other.

10/13 – Program of Contemporary Shorts (various directors)

Presented by Sadé Sellers

A program of contemporary shorts which have made impacts in the film festival circuit.

10/20 – Sambizanga (dir. Sarah Maldoror, 1972)

Presented by Masha Salazkina, Concordia University

A man is wrongfully arrested and tortured to death after he is suspected of being part of a revolutionary group.

10/27 – Wend Kuuni (dir. Gaston Kaboré, 1982)

Presented by Ken Harrow

In pre-colonial times a peddler crossing the savanna discovers a child lying unconscious in the bush. When the boy comes to, he is mute and cannot explain who he is. The peddler leaves him with a family in the nearest village. After a search for his parents, the family adopts him, giving him the name Wend Kuuni (God’s Gift) and a loving sister with whom he bonds. Wend Kuuni regains his speech only after witnessing a tragic event that prompts him to reveal his own painful history.

11/3– 2040 (dir. Damon Gameau, 2019)

Presented by Abbie Stevens, Manager of Public Programming, MSU Museum

Practical solutions to environmental concerns are addressed with the hope that the filmmaker’s daughter, 21 years old in the year 2040, will face a hopeful future.

11/10 – My English Cousin (dir. Karim Sayad, 2019)

Presented by Rachel Winter, Assistant Curator, MSU Broad Art Museum

Fahed, who left Algeria for England in 2001 and, now, contemplates returning to his place of birth.

11/17 – Sankofa (dir. Haile Gerima, 1993)

Presented by Tama Hamilton-Wray

A self-absorbed Black American fashion model on a photo shoot in Africa is spiritually transported back to a plantation in the West Indies where she experiences first-hand the physical and psychic horrors of chattel slavery, and eventually the redemptive power of community and rebellion as she becomes a member of a freedom-seeking Maroon colony.

12/1– Queens of Destruction

Presented by Laura Horak (Carleton University) and Maggie Hennefeld (University of Minnesota)

Rarely-seen silent films about feminist protest, anarchic slapstick destruction, and suggestive gender play.

12/8 – Titane (dir. Julia Ducournau, 2021)

Presented by Justus Nieland

TITANE: A metal highly resistant to heat and corrosion, with high tensile strength alloys, often used in medical prostheses due to its pronounced biocompatibility.