Thursday, September 05, 2013

Films for Teaching International Relations

This is a well-worn topic, but still, as I'm teaching International Relations this fall for the first time in a couple of years, I figured I needed to update my list. So take a look, both fellow academics and film buffs, and tell me--out of all these movies which I am allowing students of mine to watch and write a short response to in connection with themes of international relations, which ones are tired or weird or overused or don't work, and which ones have I scandalously forgot? (And if you're going to say, "Hey, you stole a lot of this list years ago from Daniel Drezner and Stephen Walt and Fred Kaplan"--well, okay, you're right: I did. Um...sorry?)

Apocalypse Now (1979)
Argo (2012)
Army of Shadows (1969)
The Battle of Algiers (1966)
Black Hawk Down (2001)
Breaker Morant (1979)
Burn! (1970)
The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
Charlie Wilson’s War (2007)
Clear and Present Danger (1994)
Conspiracy (2001)
The Day of the Jackal (1973)
Dr. Strangelove, Or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
Fail-Safe (1964)
Good Bye Lenin! (2004)
Hotel Rwanda (2005)
In the Loop (2009)
Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)
The Last King of Scotland (2006)
Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
The Lives of Others (2007)
Lord of War (2005)
The Man Who Would Be King (1975)
The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
Missing (1982)
Notorious (1946)
The Official Story (1985)
The Russians are Coming, the Russians are Coming (1966)
Seven Days in May (1964)
Sometimes in April (2005)
The Spy Who Came in From the Cold (1965)
Syriana (2005)
The Third Man (1949)
Thirteen Days (2000)
Three Kings (1999)
To Live (1995)
Tor! Tora! Tora! (1970)
The Quiet American (2002)
Wag the Dog (1997)
The Wannsee Conference (1984)
The Year of Living Dangerously (1983)

Incidentally, I make no apologies for the inconsistent scattering of a few select non-English-language films; there are so many foreign movies that would be worth including that if I actually tried to be comprehensive and balanced in that regard the list would be just unworkable. Also, given my geek interests, the absence of any fantasy, science-fiction, or comic book adaptions may seem significant. It isn't; I simply, again, arbitrarily decided that going there would just be too much. So, for better or worse, "realistic" dramas and comedies and histories it is.


Nathan Fox said...

Akira Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai" (1954). A classic that inspired a lot of Hollywood films...

Paul said...

Duck Soup