From the first films on, animals have been a constant presence on the screen, whether in safari films, popular science films, avant-garde films, horror and sci-fi films, anthropomorphizing narrative films with animal stars, or wildlife documentaries. What is this fascination of the cinema with animals? How do our encounters with animals in the movie theater differ from encounters in zoos, at home, or in the wild? What happens to animals when they are technologically mediated, and what happens to (human) spectators in the film experience of wild, cute, strange, or horrifying creatures? In this course, we will examine films including Electrocution of an Elephant (1903), Starewicz’s insect stop motion animations, American creature features such as Tarantula, as well as Tourneur’s Cat People, Bresson’s Au Hasard Balthazar, Herzog’s Grizzly Man, and others. With the help of these films, we will investigate relationships among humans, animals and technology in modernity, as well as concepts of animation, life, and wildlife. This course will familiarize students with the philosophical background of the “question” of the animal and engage film criticism that focuses on the ways in which film communicates, mediates, and transforms creaturely life. The course will incorporate readings by André Bazin, Jacques Derrida, Giorgio Agamben, J.M. Coetzee, Donna Haraway, Akira Lippit, Mary Ann Doane, Gilles Deleuze, Dudley Andrew, and others.