With the spring 18’ semester coming at us in full swing, Cinematopia, an MBRSC student-run initiative club, will commence for its 7th edition on Wednesday, February 7th at 6:00PM for its weekly, semester-long screenings. The club is hosted in the screening room on the 4th floor of the C building with attendees varying from inspired MBRSC students and other members of the AUD community lured in by the banners situated right outside Uni-mart and frequent e-mails on the forthcoming movies.
Vanessa Mansour, a DPST student and frequent attendee of Cinematopia, expressed the teaching potential that the club inhibits, “After the movie, we all meet up in the hallway and discuss and comment on both the content and cinematic elements of the movie,” she said, “the best part is we earn bonus grades on our courses for partaking in an activity we enjoy!” she added.
The AUD website labels Cinematopia as a hub for facilitating students interests in the area of film. Be it the fog of emotional intensity or technical aspects behind producing the movies, attendees have the opportunity to grasp something from the movies screened every Tuesday. However, a distinct process is taken by the five-person administrative team to decide on the semester’s movie selections.
When asked about the behind-the-scenes of conducting Cinematopia, Mahra Al Shehhi, the President of the club and a DPST junior, described their student-oriented movie selections, “We gather movie suggestions from students and encourage them to contribute, we then go through the list to pinpoint specific recurring themes,” she said, “We also launched a Whatsapp group last semester that any movie lover can join, making Cinematopia not only a club for MBRSC but for every student!” she added.
Since Cinematopia reinvented itself as a club that is open to accommodating a wider variety of students, a few have taken that opportunity to escape the ravages of university life. In fact, in a screening room filled with MBRSC students, some students of other majors find themselves seated front row at 6:00PM sharp, eagerly waiting for the movie to begin.
A member of the audience that is frequently spotted in the screening room and does not belong to the MBRSC major is Yousef Ahmed, a mechanical engineer junior and movie enthusiast, “I’ve always been a movie fanatic,” said Yousef, “Taking a few hours off from studying to watch a movie on the widescreen on campus is the perfect getaway,” he added.
While some students find the post-class timing convenient, others propose there should be more than one screening per week. Dhara Bhatia, a Journalism major, spoke of her passion for film but inability to attend the screenings, “The timing just is not convenient,” she said, labelling 6:00 to 8:00 PM as peak traffic time.
For those who desperately need a getaway from their books, or simply have to attend for the sake of earning bonus points; kick back, relax and join the screening of Sing Street next Wednesday!
Photos by Farida Khalil & Farah ElBahrawy