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IU Themester Streaming and DVD Resources


A human life is defined in large measure by what one remembers of one’s individual past and, by extension, what is forgotten.  The same can be said of human collectivities. Our capacity and compulsion to remember and forget may or may not be uniquely human, but it is without a doubt one of the central and defining characteristics of humanity.  Inspired by the 2019-2020 celebration of Indiana University's Bicentennial in which IU's history is explored, this fall's themester focuses on remembering and forgetting, a theme that touches every discipline in the College of Arts and Sciences.

One theme, many directions

The relationship between remembering and forgetting operates in many registers and implicates a wide array of social, political, cultural and psychological concerns and conditions.   History is often regarded as a record of what we remember and what we forget, sometimes actively and sometimes passively, caught in the tension between cultural memory and living memory. 

Monuments, memorials, and museums focus attention on what we find worthy of remembering, and by extension—and again, both actively and passively—of what we allow or will ourselves to forget.  Commemorative landscapes change over time, often in recognition of people and events too long forgotten.  Traumatic memory, as with PTSD or other instances of psychic trauma such as false memory syndrome, is often understood as an unrelenting, repetitious remembrance of painful events without the capacity for forgetting—often characterized through the problematic term “closure.” 

Legal battles regularly test competing memories of what happened when and where while taking account of what is being forgotten. Aging is fraught and filled with ailments of memory, including Alzheimer’s disease, which challenge our capacity to remember who we are.  Digital memory offers no easy solutions as the evolution of technology leaves old formats inaccessible and lost to time. - Adapted from IU Themester Homepage


All images courtesy of  Accessed October 4, 2021.

IUB Streaming Titles

The following resources require IUB CAS Authentication.

Blade Runner 2049 (2017, 163 min.) Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.

Freedom Writers (2007, 122 min.)  Two-time Academy Award winner Hilary Swank stars in this powerful true story of an idealistic teacher at a tough high school in California who tries to inspire her troubled students through journal writing. Patrick Dempsey, Scott Glenn, Imelda Staunton, April Lee Hernandez. Directed by Richard LaGravenese.

I Dream in Another Language (2017, 101 min.)  I DREAM IN ANOTHER LANGUAGE follows a young linguist into the jungles of Mexico as he tries to learn about and preserve a mysterious indigenous language. A language, as he discovers, is at the point of disappearing since the last two speakers had a fight fifty years ago and refuse to speak a word with each other.  Trying to bring the two old friends back together, he discovers that hidden in the past, in the heart of the jungle, lies a secret concealed by the language that makes it difficult to believe that the heart of Zikril will beat once again.

In The Monument (2015, 53 min.) examines the evolution of Holocaust-inspired monument building in the last 70 years. With the help of world-famous artists, scholars, architects we get to explore how to make monuments last or is timelessness just an illusion. Monuments, just like other pieces of public art, need to evolve and be ready for change. What makes one monument speak for centuries and others disappear without a trace?

Inception (2010, 148 min.) Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a skilled thief, the absolute best in the dangerous art of extraction: stealing valuable secrets from deep within the subconscious during the dream state when the mind is at its most vulnerable. Cobb’s rare ability has made him a coveted player in this treacherous new world of corporate espionage, but it has also made him an international fugitive and cost him everything he has ever loved. Now Cobb is being offered a chance at redemption. One last job could give him his life back but only if he can accomplish the impossible—inception. Instead of the perfect heist, Cobb and his team of specialists have to pull off the reverse; their task is not to steal an idea but to plant one. If they succeed, it could be a perfect crime.

It's Always Fair Weather (1955, 161 min.) World War II service buddies reunite in a New York City bar 10 years after their discharge only to find they haven't that much in common anymore until one of them gets in over his head with mobsters. 

One Million Dubliners (2014, 84 min.) Glasnevin Cemetery is the final resting place of 1.5 million souls; it is Ireland's national necropolis. ONE MILLION DUBLINERS reveals the often unspoken stories of ritual, loss, redemption, emotion, history - and the business of death. But this is really a film about life: the Saint Valentine's Day rush in the florists; the American visitors eagerly searching for Irish ancestors; lost and longed for love; discovery and bereavement; earthy gravediggers and musicians in celebration.  Above all, it's the story of an immensely engaging Tour Guide shepherding his charges - and us - through the headstones and monuments, through opinions and beliefs.

Reel Bad Arabs (2006, 51min.) This groundbreaking documentary dissects a slanderous aspect of cinematic history that has run virtually unchallenged from the earliest days of silent film to today's biggest Hollywood blockbusters. Featuring acclaimed author Dr. Jack Shaheen, the film explores a long line of degrading images of Arabs - from Bedouin bandits and submissive maidens to sinister sheiks and gun-wielding "terrorists" - along the way offering devastating insights into the origin of these stereotypic images, their development at key points in US history, and why they matter so much today. Shaheen shows how the persistence of these images over time has served to naturalize prejudicial attitudes toward Arabs and Arab culture, in the process reinforcing a narrow view of individual Arabs and the effects of specific US domestic and international policies on their lives. 

Sami Blood (2016, 109 min.)  This acclaimed film follows 14-year-old Sami girl Elle Marja ("Powerful newcomer Lene Cecilia Sparrok." - New York Times), who, along with her sister, is torn from her indigenous reindeer-herding family and placed in a government-run boarding school in 1930s Sweden. There Elle dreams of education and a future, but these dreams are hindered when she is met with racial expectations that class her people as inferior. What follows is a girl's attempt to escape one world of prejudice and another of old traditions, only to realize the true cost of freedom.

Three Colors:  Blue (1993, 98 min.)  In the devastating first film of the Three colors trilogy, Juliette Binoche gives a tour de force performance as Julie, a woman reeling from the tragic death of her husband and young daughter. But Blue is more than just a blistering study of grief; it's also a tale of liberation, as Julie attempts to free herself from the past while confronting truths about the life of her late husband, a composer. Shot in sapphire tones by Sławomir Idziak, and set to an extraordinary operatic score by Zbigniew Preisner, Blue is an overwhelming sensory experience.

TV Family (2015, 56 min.) In 1960, NBC aired what some consider to be the first "reality television" show in American broadcast history. Hosted by Jane Wyatt of Father Knows Best fame, and billing itself as a "new kind of visual reporting," it was called Story of a Family, and it purported to document the day-to-day lives of the 10-member Robertson family of Amarillo, Texas. While the show has since faded from public memory, media scholars and television historians now recognize its significance as a precursor to the unscripted television programming that dominates American television today. In TV FAMILY, filmmaker Ethan Thompson draws on the recollections of several of the children featured in the show to offer a fascinating behind-the-scenes account of the making of Story of a Family. Weaving personal anecdotes from the Robertsons with commentary from TV historians and cultural critics, Thompson tells the story of how the show's producers carefully choreographed the way they wanted the family to appear to the American public -- all in the name of authenticity.

IUB DVD/Video Films

Be sure to check with Media Services for hours.  VHS titles are housed off-site at ALF, and can be requested via IUCAT

Blade Runner (1982, 117 min.) In a futuristic Los Angeles of 2019, detective Rick Deckard is a highly rated "Blade Runner" assigned to find and kill illegal cybernetic "replicants", genetic creations with superhuman abilities. Pulled unwillingly out of retirement, Deckard is forced into one last case, six exceptionally dangerous replicants who have escaped from slave labor and made their way into the city, apparently with plans to gain vengeance on the corporate masters who created them. In the course of an investigation, Deckard falls in love with a beautiful woman who holds a disturbing secret, creating additional doubt and confusion in Deckard's mind. 

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011, 129 min.)  Oskar is convinced that his father, who died in the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, has left a message for him hidden in the city. Feeling disconnected from his grieving mother and driven by an active mind that refuses to believe in things that can't be observed, Oskar begins searching New York City for the lock that fits a mysterious key he found in his father's closet. His journey through the five boroughs takes him beyond his loss to a greater understanding of the world around him.

Hiroshima, Mon Amour (1959, 90 min.)  A Japanese architect and a French actress engage in a brief intense affair in Hiroshima in 1959. Both deal with their personal memories of World War II--he by articulating his firsthand experience with nuclear disaster, she by remembering her traumatic affair with a German soldier.

How Green Was My Valley (1941, 118 min.)  A man looks back on his life as a boy in a small Welsh mining town. His reminiscences reveal the disintegration of his closely knit family while capturing the sentiments and issues of their time.  Also available in a streaming format via IUCAT.

Ikiru (1952, 143 min.)  Discovering that he is in the terminal stages of cancer, a clerk spends his last months in search of a meaning to life. After his pursuit of pleasure has failed, he finds fulfillment in bringing about the building of a children's playground in the slums.

Jacob's Ladder (1990, 116min.)  A Vietnam vet [is] haunted by the memories of war and the death of his young son. As Jacob starts to experience visions of demons all around him, he begins to question what is real. Is he going insane? Is he suffering from post-traumatic stress? Or could he be caught in the middle of some horrific supernatural battle he can't understand?

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) 123 mins  The story of a man who becomes a legend and an important political figure by falsely claiming he shot a ruthless gunman (Liberty Valance).

The Manchurian Candidate (1962, 129 min.)  A U.S. Army platoon, captured in the Korean conflict, is whisked to Manchuria for three nightmarish days of experimental drug-and-hypnosis- induced conditioning that transforms the men into human time bombs. Returned to the United States as war heroes, one of them is used by his mother to promote her Joseph McCarthy-like husband's political career.  Also available to check out is the 2004 version.

Memento (2000, 113 min.)  An intricate crime story about a man who has lost his short term memory due to a rare brain disorder. Now he is out to catch his wife's murderer, whose identity he cannot ever know for sure. The more he tries to figure out what is true and real, the more he sinks deeper into a multi-layered abyss of uncertainty and surprises.

The Thin Blue Line (1988, 102 min.)  Errol Morris sets out to prove that a convicted hitchhiker did not kill a Dallas policeman in 1976 - and that the lowlife that fingered him did. Based on a true story.

The Sixth Sense (2000, 107 min.) A noted child psychologist attempts to help a frightened 8-year-old boy who is experiencing terrifying visions of the dead.