The crunch of freshly salted popcorn. Muffled whispers in a dark theater. Amplified noise from large speakers. Vivid colors on the screen. Before, seeing a movie with friends meant being together. Now, during the pandemic, movie theaters can pose health risks. The Movie Club has been around for nine years and aims to recreate the social experience while being separate on Zoom.
Meeting once a week during X-block Tuesday, the Movie Club is a space where students can relax and recover from other activities of the week.
The club is advised by English teacher Evan Mousseau. It is for people who enjoy watching, discussing, and recommending movies with their peers.
“It’s really a club built around people who share common interests,” said Mousseau. “We’re a place where people get together and talk about movies: movies they’ve seen recently, recommend those they’re excited to release in the future, as well as watch movies together and discuss it after. “
Freshman Sigal Solomon joined the club this year and has the chance to bond with other like-minded peers.
“It’s a great opportunity to meet people and talk about things you love, which isn’t always an opportunity you often get in school – just hang out and talk about things you love “said Solomon. “So if you like movies, I think you will really enjoy The Movie Club.”
The club helps its members socialize, according to freshman Ben Rosenblatt.
“It’s a great way to connect at a time when it’s hard to make friends and connect with people,” Rosenblatt said.
So far, the club have watched a few films together on Zoom, including “Spider-man: Into the Spider-verse”, “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” and “Coco”. They also watched “Young Frankenstein” and “The Sixth Sense” on their own and then discussed them all together.
Freshman Nathan Ives said the chat feature on Zoom has given the club more opportunities to communicate with each other during the movies.
“It’s like talking in a movie theater, whispering a comment to another person, except it’s in the chat so it’s not as disturbing. It feels like a pleasant conversation without interrupting the movie,” said Ives.
As the club is in its ninth year, there are both old and new traditions to explore on Zoom. According to Mousseau, in the past, the club organized a film festival made by students. Now, in addition to the festival and other activities, he hopes to invite people who are professionally involved in the film industry to talk about their work at the club.
“I think people can definitely keep an eye on the year as we try to find a way to do more events for the public,” Mousseau said. “If people from other clubs want to team up, that’s definitely something we’re interested in. It’s a fun way for us to use the movies as a vehicle to understand other perspectives and other groups.
Even on Zoom, club members are able to bond around their shared love and appreciation for the movies. According to Mousseau, people may interpret a film differently, but they are still able to tap into their shared experience.
“You can be with a group of people and all simultaneously have a movie together, but you all have different experiences as you filter through your own life goal. This connection of sharing an experience together and talking about it right after is one of the powerful things, ”said Mousseau. “Whether you are someone who wants to make movies or someone who loves to watch them and just wants people to talk about them with, the whole range is represented in our club.”