Let’s go to the movies

Published 8:12 pm Monday, April 23, 2012

By Nancy Warren
Guest Columnist

There is something special about watching a thought-provoking documentary, film or movie, especially when it is projected on a big screen. “Movie Night,” an ongoing event at Paul D. Camp Community College, is expected to draw a big crowd on April 24, thanks in part to small-farm owner Scott Wilson of Full Quiver Farm in Suffolk, who will be on hand to answer questions about the provocative documentary “Farmageddon.”

In the film, producer Kristen Canty tells how raw milk was the solution to her son’s allergies, but the all-natural milk from free-range cows is difficult to acquire because of government regulations. Although Canty addresses the legislative issues that many small farmers face, she also looks at the problems associated with non-pasteurized milk, and the validity of USDA approvals.

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My earliest memory of cinema was with my brother and sister.Every summer, we would spend two weeks in Roanoke Rapids, N.C., with my grandparents, who lived only three blocks from the local movie theater, The Royal.

On our daily trips to the downtown area, after visiting my grandfather’s upholstery shop located around the corner from The Royal, we would engulf whatever film was playing at the time, watching it at least twice and sometimes three times.

One of the films I remember consuming at the 512-plush-seat theater was “To Kill A Mockingbird,” starring Gregory Peck. It stands out in my mind, because I felt a close connection to Scout Finch, the 10-year-old protagonist and narrator, who was just like me.

She was my age, she had an older brother, she got into a lot of mischief, she spent hours playing outside, she hated wearing dresses and she learned from her father the importance of “doing the right thing.”

Perhaps this is where my mild case of cinephilia originated. My passion for interpreting the meaning of well-written narratives has left a lasting impression on me, and some films over the years have even been life changing.

Cinema experiences can make us all laugh, cry, examine issues, and learn. They also take us places we might never go. Just last summer, “To Kill a Mockingbird” led me to the Naro in Norfolk to attend Mal Vincent’s Classic Movie Festival, but more importantly, it took me back in time. Even though I had not seen the movie in years, I still remember how Scout felt, and how the events in the movie made me feel.

I don’t think I went to the movies as a child for the reasons mentioned above, but they are the reasons I go today, and they are the reasons I am delighted to be involved in the planning of Paul D. Camp Community College’s “Movie Night.” The four movies shown each semester, which are free and open to the public and offer more than mere entertainment, fit into the following categories: pre-released movies, classic film, foreign film and documentary.

Created by PDCCC President, Dr. Paul Conco, “Movie Night” meets the needs of the community by providing cultural opportunities, and it is aligned with the PDCCC mission statement, “to provide students and the community with diverse learning opportunities.”

The idea took shape in September 2011, when the college offered the first movie, “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” at the Regional Workforce Development Center in Franklin in the Technology Theater, which has recently been equipped with surround sound.

Movie goers have enjoyed the following films thus far: the documentary “Who Killed the Electric Car?” in October followed by the foreign film “The Kite Runner” and the classic film “12 Angry Men” in November. This semester, movie goers enjoyed the pre-released film “Money Ball” in January, classic film “West Side Story” in February and “The Great Match” in March.

The final film this semester, “Famageddon” will be shown today in Suffolk (Room 124) at 4 p.m. and in Franklin’s Technology Theater at 7:30 p.m. It is free and open to the public and promises to be an unforgettable experience.

 

Nancy Warren is an English instructor at the Franklin campus and the coordinator of “Movie Night” at Paul D. Camp Community College. Email her at nwarren@pdc.edu.