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Library program presents international cinema to students

February 06, 2013

A free program hosted by Watzek Library gives students the opportunity to experience esteemed international films throughout the academic year.

James Bunnelle, acquisitions and collection development librarian, started the program, Watzek Screens, in the fall of 2011. 

“It seemed like a logical offshoot of existing events hosted by Watzek, such as Watzek Rocks,” Bunnelle said. “It also allowed us to highlight and increase exposure to our extensive film collection.”

The program’s intentions are simple: to increase exposure to international cinema and to encourage students to think critically about a broad range of classic films.

“What might simply serve as entertainment or diversion to one generation often becomes a complex snapshot of a particular point in a nation’s political and social development to the generations that follow,” Bunnelle said. 

To provide context ahead of each screening, Bunnelle maintains the Watzek Screens blog, where he writes about the film’s place within cinema studies. Before each event, he offers a few comments and then welcomes all attendees to participate in a discussion after the film’s conclusion.

“Despite these being the days of easy streaming, I think there is still a need for a directed approach to film studies, for someone to provide a contextual framework and facilitate critical thinking,” Bunnelle said. 

In the past, Watzek Screens has focused on the cinema of Germany, Italy, and Japan, but this term the theme is documentaries. Anyone who has an interest in film is welcome at any of the six screenings throughout the semester. The series began on February 5 with a screening of Titicut Follies. The next screening, Salesman, will take place on February 19, at 7 p.m.  

Watzek Screens Blog


Blue Lassiter ’15 contributed to this story.

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