CUL485 - Movies and Morality

Outline information
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Last revision date Nov 2, 2020 10:59:48 AM
Last review date Nov 17, 2020 11:37:58 AM

Subject Title
Movies and Morality

Subject Description
Motion pictures offer students unique opportunities to view dramatic narratives based on motivations, dilemmas and consequences.  These narratives often present moral and ethical complexities as they relate to issues such as poverty, homelessness, violence, war, racism, politics, greed and love.  Moral and ethical issues and the way film-makers approach and present them will form the basis for student discussion and analysis in this subject.

Credit Status
One General Education elective credit in the Arts & Humanities category

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

1)    Develop critical skills in the analysis and evaluation of film;
2)    Identify thematic, fictional and dramatic elements as a receptive viewer;
3)    Identify different aspects of philosophical ethics within film;
4)    Analyze movies identifying issues of morality;
5)    Understand and evaluate ethical and moral reasoning behind movies and clearly discern how they impact societal issues;
6)    Evaluate how personal and subjective responses to various aspects of film affect judgment;
7)    Develop strong spoken and written analysis of movies and the moral issues they attempt to portray. 
8)    Understand how movies are made and the role played by the director, screenwriter, film editor, and actor as they interpret dramatic and historical social events.
9)    Evaluate the impact of censorship, politics and cinematic liberties on motion picture content;1
10)  Identify changing cinematic depictions of different social and cultural groups as presented in the movies;
11)  Critically evaluate film from various perspectives such as: technical achievement; emotional experience; genre approach, psychoanalytical or eclectic approach.

Essential Employability Skills
Communicate clearly, concisely and correctly in the written, spoken and visual form that fulfils the purpose and meets the needs of the audience.

Respond to written, spoken, or visual messages in a manner that ensures effective communication.

Use a variety of thinking skills to anticipate and solve problems.

Locate, select, organize, and document information using appropriate technology and information systems.

Analyze, evaluate, and apply relevant information from a variety of sources.

Show respect for diverse opinions, values, belief systems, and contributions of others.

Interact with others in groups or teams in ways that contribute to effective working relationships and the achievement of goals.

Manage the use of time and other resources to complete projects.

Take responsibility for one's own actions, decisions, and consequences.

Academic Integrity
Seneca upholds a learning community that values academic integrity, honesty, fairness, trust, respect, responsibility and courage. These values enhance Seneca's commitment to deliver high-quality education and teaching excellence, while supporting a positive learning environment. Ensure that you are aware of Seneca's Academic Integrity Policy which can be found at: Review section 2 of the policy for details regarding approaches to supporting integrity. Section 2.3 and Appendix B of the policy describe various sanctions that can be applied, if there is suspected academic misconduct (e.g., contract cheating, cheating, falsification, impersonation or plagiarism).

Please visit the Academic Integrity website to understand and learn more about how to prepare and submit work so that it supports academic integrity, and to avoid academic misconduct.

All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Accessibility Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.