course
Cinema History 2: 1930s-60s

Dec 2020

I took 2 Pena classes this semester and NEVER AGAIN. I had 24 papers due over the course of the semester and they were the most dreadful things to write (and literally the biggest pain of my semester). I liked how his PowerPoints were organized, but as a lecturer, I didn't think he was particularly stand-out. I felt that lectures included so much more history than necessary (like geopolitical history) in both courses I took and even as a film major, I just wanted them to end. If you don't mind always being plagued with a paper, then this class will be OK. I don't think it's as standout as many of these reviews say (and pretty sure everyone who agrees just hasn't written CULPA reviews because I don't know anyone else in my classes who say they love him).

Sep 2020

The most amazing professor I've ever had. I've taken several film classes with him, and they have all been amazing. He is extremely knowledgable, which makes his lectures fascinating.

Sep 2020

The most amazing professor I've ever had. I've taken several film classes with him, and they have all been amazing. He is extremely knowledgable, which makes his lectures fascinating.

Oct 2019

Richard Pena is a really knowledgeable professor to be sure. However, the course is poorly constructed. Each lecture feels like a random set of facts about a certain film or director with a few historical facts thrown in there. I also hate to say this but the auditors in this class, who make up surprisingly half of the class, are super distracting. Most of them are older, which isn’t fundamentally an issue, but they treat the course like a FILM CLUB. To their credit, they aren’t that far off. This class feels less like a film history class due to the content of the course and how it’s presented. However, they frequently make irrelevant comments in class and ask pointless questions. All this being said, the class is fairly straightforward (easy if you will). There’s only four sets of papers/film responses. Show up for every class and screening and you’re okay. TLDR: This class doesn’t feel like a real history class but it’s pretty easy to get a good grade if you show up to everything and turn in your work on time.