Through independent movies such as “Miss Bala” and “Cave of Forgotten Dreams,” the long upstanding Cinema International tradition on Murray State’s campus has brought global culture to students’ doorsteps.
The program, brought to campus in the fall of 1986, was begun by a small number of staff members pursuing a wider recognition of film off the main stream. They wanted to allow students the opportunity to experience more of the international film culture that is often overlooked.
“We started modestly,” said Carl Waag, professor of Humanities and Fine Arts. “We began showing only one film in a semester using wretched equipment in the Curris center. We showed a film called ‘Metropolis’ that semester, and that was all we did.”
Though it started small, the tradition grew exponentially in a short number of years. Now, Cinema International shows eight movies per semester.
“There are people who would not miss a single showing,” Waag said. “It’s a place to see movies you won’t see in Hollywood, and you may not see anywhere else either.”
Cinema International also boasts its involvement with various departments and colleges on campus and attempts to correlate its content with upcoming events on campus such as the Shakespeare festival.
“We really try to line the movies up with things that are happening on campus,” Waag said. “We also try to work with the foreign language departments as much as possible with the new culture credits a large number of classes are requiring.”
In addition to its academic virtue, Cinema International also positively impacts the Murray community, as it helps Murray rise through the polls in retirement community rankings.
“Things like Cinema International make Murray go higher up in the top places to retire, too,” Waag said. “People in the community really enjoy coming out and getting involved in things like Cinema International because they are open to everyone and admission is free.”
Showings are held almost every Thursday, Friday and Saturday in the Curris Center Theater.
Story by Shannon MacAllister, Staff writer.