Can cinema be philosophical? What is film anyway? Is it a language and, if so, how does it produce meaning? What are the formal and cognitive features of filmic narration? What does it mean to "read" a film or to speak of "cinematic literacy"? How is film political? Is there such a thing as "responsible" or "critical" viewing? Is there a media archeology of the virtual? To address such increasingly urgent questions for today's media culture this seminar will explore a wide range of canonical and contemporary works of film theory and aesthetics in relation to weekly screenings of narrative, documentary and avant-garde films.