Offered by Ball State University—with films and learning materials courtesy of Turner Classic Movies—The Case of Film Noir is an online learning program that begins next week and runs through August 3rd. It’s presented with assistance from The Canvas Network.

So film fans, if you have some spare time over the next couple of months and feel like watching more than 100 film noir movies from the Turner Classic Movie (TCM) vaults, you’ll probably be thrilled with with this course offering.

TCM’s series, Summer of Darkness, ties to the Ball State course. TCM will devote every Friday, from June through July, to wall-to-wall screenings of noir classics and rarities.

He Walked by Night

He Walked by Night

If you sign up for the course, and complete it, you might just like an acknowledgement that you watched and learned that much about noir. You might like a certificate, or something that proves you not only watched all that noir, but properly studied them. Well TCM has that covered for you too.

Best news of all, the course is free.

TCM writes,
Summer is cooler in the shadows. We invite movie fans from around the world to join us for a flexible, multimedia investigation and celebration of film noir. In this nine-week course, we’ll go back in film history to investigate the The Case of Film Noir—the means, motives, and opportunities that led Hollywood studios to make these hard-boiled crime dramas, arguably their greatest contribution to American culture.

Both the course and the associated films will enrich your understanding of the film noir phenomenon—from the earliest noir precursors to recent experiments in neo-noir. You will be able to share thoughts online and test your movie knowledge with a worldwide community of film noir students and fans.

About the instructor,
Dr. Richard L. Edwards received his Ph.D. in Critical Studies from USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. He is the co-author of The Maltese Touch of Evil: Film Noir and Potential Criticism (University Press of New England, 2011). He is the co-host of the long-running podcast series, “Out of the Past: Investigating Film Noir.” Dr. Edwards previously taught a Film Noir MOOC on the Canvas Network in 2013. In addition to his interests and expertise in film noir, Dr. Edwards is the Executive Director of iLearn Research at Ball State University where he specializes in teaching and learning innovations for online, blended, and face-to-face environments.

By taking the course, you’ll gain a deeper appreciation of classic Hollywood movies; be able to identify the characteristics of a film noir, and explain the origins and history of the genre; and be able to perform closer analyses of films noir.

Gloria Grahame and Humphrey Bogart

Gloria Grahame and Humphrey Bogart

Study topics include: What is film noir?; film noir and Its Influences; film noir in the Studio System; film noir, themes and characters; and Film noir in the postwar period.

BTW, you don’t have to be a cable or TCM subscriber to have access to the films, for non-TCM subscribers, they will have free links to online public domain films noir, so anyone can participate fully in the course.

I’ve signed up. And here’s a tip of the hat and a great big thanks to my friend, Guy Arceneaux, for bringing the course to my attention.