Hollywood: The Dream Factory - Online film and media courses | Arts and Science Online

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Hollywood: The Dream Factory

FILM 300/3.0

This course examines Classical Hollywood Cinema from the early 1940s until its demise at the end of the 1950s.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate proficiency in various writing skills (reviews, interpretive analysis, critical analysis, and online communication/forum posts) through peer review and instructor feedback, and re-drafting written work.
  2. Recall a basic knowledge of terms, theories, and concepts concerning popular film and Hollywood culture and better understand the historical context of film and moving image through application of the Motion Picture Production Code to critical writing and film analysis. 
  3. Explain critical and theoretical approaches to film and moving image studies through written work and peer review.
  4. Conduct online and library research in scholarly publications, databases, archives & screenings to enhance written analysis of Classical Hollywood cinema.


This course will examine how the classic Hollywood films from the early 1940s to the end of the 1950s were made, how they were received and what kinds of larger cultural, political and social forces played a role in their development.

We will examine issues such as:

  • the development of the studio system
  • the way in which Classical Hollywood cinema addressed issues of gender, race and politics
  • the role of the director, the producer, and the studio in the making of Classical Hollywood films
  • the different genres of Classical Hollywood cinema and how they evolved
  • the profound role of European émigrés in the development of Classical Hollywood’s style
  • the way in which these films reveal a great deal to us about American history and culture at the time

Along with critical, theoretical and historical readings, we shall examine such key documents as the Motion Picture Production Code, which shaped a great deal about what we now think of as Classical Hollywood cinema.


To be determined
Course Dates: 
Exam Dates: 
TBD (Take-Home Final Exam)


Mastery Questions


Film Script Discussion Activity


Video Code Critique Submission


Assessment 3 – Final Exam (Take Home)


**Evaluation subject to change**

Live Sessions

This course has required and optional live sessions (e.g. webinars, synchronous activities). Please consult the Timeline in the first week of class.

Final Examination

Students must write their exam on the day and time scheduled by the University. The start time may vary slightly depending on the off-campus exam centre. Do not schedule vacations, appointments, etc., during the exam period.


Professor Scott MacKenzie (mackenzs@queensu.ca)

Instructor message

Scott MackenzieA great deal of my academic work focuses on the ways in which moving images, broadly defined, function to challenge mainstream representations of identity, culture and society writ large. Much of this work has to do with the perils and possibilities of technology as a means of political and cultural intervention in the 20th and 21st centuries.

My published books and articles reflect these interests, which include an anthology I co-edited on Dogme ‘95, entitled Purity and Provocation (BFI, 2003), which considers Dogme in relation to national and transnational cinemas in light of globalisation. I have also written a monograph entitled Screening Québec: Québécois Moving Images, National Identity and the Public Sphere (Manchester UP, 2004) which examines the role played by publicness and the public sphere in relation to contested notions of national identity in Québec cinema from its inception in the 1910s to the cinema of Denys Arcand and Robert Lepage.

Time Commitment

Students can expect to spend approximately 18-20 hours per week (108 - 120 hours per term) on study/practice and online activity for FILM 300.

Course Resources


SOLUS is Queen’s Student On-Line University System. You’ll have access to a SOLUS account once you become a Queen’s student. You’ll use SOLUS to register for courses, add and drop courses, update your contact information, view financial and academic information, and pay your tuition.

About OnQ

onQ is Queen's online learning platform. You'll log into onQ to access your course. All materials related to your course—notes, readings, videos, recordings, discussion forums, assignments, quizzes, groupwork, tutorials, and help—will be on the onQ site.

About Credit Units

Queen’s courses are weighted in credit units. A typical one-term course is worth 3.0 units, and a typical two-term course is worth 6.0 units. You combine these units to create your degree. A general (three-year) BA or BSc requires a total of 90 credit units.

Computer Requirements

To take an online course, you’ll need a high speed internet connection as well as a microphone and speakers to be able to watch videos, hear sounds, and participate in interactive online activities. A webcam is recommended but not necessary.

System Requirements:

  • Laptop or Desktop computer purchased within the last 5 years. (mobile devices are not supported)
  • Windows Vista SP2/Mac OSX 10.9 or higher
  • Up to date versions of Firefox, Internet Explorer or Safari. Please note that Google Chrome is not recommended for use in our courses.
  • Most recent version of Adobe Reader and Adobe Flash

 See also Getting Started.


The deadlines for new applications to Queen’s Arts and Science Online courses are in our Upcoming Application Dates section.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees vary depending when you start, your year, faculty, and program. Fees for Summer Term 2018 first-year Distance Career Arts & Science Domestic students are as follows: for a 3.0-unit course, $685.90; for a 6.0-unit course, $1371.80 See also Tuition and Fees.

Grading Scheme

The information below is intended for undergraduate students in the Faculty of Arts and Science. Academic Regulations in other Faculties may differ.

Letter Grade Grade Point

GPA Calculators
Have your SOLUS grade report handy and then follow the link to the Arts and Science GPA calculators.

How does this affect my academics?
See the GPA and Academic Standing page.

Follow the link above for an explanation of how the GPA system affects such things as the Dean’s Honour List, requirements to graduate, and academic progression.

Frequently Asked Questions on the Grading Scheme
Please follow this link to the FAQ's

Campus Bookstore

All textbooks can be purchased at Queen’s Campus Bookstore.

Non-Queen’s Students

All Queen’s Arts and Science Online courses are open to students at other universities. Before applying as a visiting student, request a Letter of Permission from your home university that states that you have permission to take the course and apply it to your degree. See also Apply.

Academic Integrity

Please see Queen’s policy statement on academic integrity for information on how to complete an online course honestly.