Every Tuesday, the screening room in the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Communication in the American University in Dubai witnesses “Cinematopia.”
“Cinematopia” is a film club that shares a movie with the students every tuesday at 6pm. The club gives the students the opportunity to earn one bonus point for every three film screenings that they attend.
Last Tuesday, on 5 April 2016, “Cinematopia” screened the South Korean movie “My Sassy Girl” in room “C-403” in the MBRSC school, and about 12 people attended. We set out to get some interviews from Digital Production and Storytelling students that attend the movies, to get their opinion on the club. DPST student Dana Oweis shared her love for the club saying, “Having a movie screened in AUD cheers me up, as I live in Mirdif and leaving at five pm is the rush hour, so i spend my time by watching a movie.” Engy Helmy, is another DPST student who shared Oweis’s point of view by stating that, knowing that every Tuesday a movie will be screened makes her a lot better and fills her with positive energy, as she loves and enjoys watching movies.
However, Hagar Abdulbari shared a different point of view saying, “The idea of Cinematopia is great, and I love watching movies, yet I prefer to watch them at home, so I attend mostly so i can earn bonus points.”
The supervisor and the officer of the club Ahmad Samara refers to the club as a “learning club” more than an entertaining one. Samara stated that “ The main reason why “Cinematopia” was created, is for the Media students to learn.” He adds, “The more you watch movies, the more you learn about them.” Samara believes that by observing the specific elements and details that go into creating a movie would make the students more perceptive to different techniques. Furthermore, he believes that this club could help foster creativity and imagination in the students, and that it is just as useful as classroom lectures. Moreover, he confirmed that the movies he screens every Tuesday, come from different countries and cultures, saying,“ I want the students to open their minds to different cultures, as this will add to their creativity.” Samara compares watching movies to reading a book as he states, “ While watching a movie you are learning about something new, knowing a new story, and you are being able to deliver the feelings or the story in more than one way.”
Speaking of the factors that go into choosing a movie, he said, “The decision of choosing a specific movie is based upon old movies that are not really watched by many, and movies shot with a low-budget.” He believes that these low-budget are good examples and should be observed by the students, since they are on a low-budgets themselves.
The film club in the American University in Dubai “Cinematopia”, began its activities in the autumn of 2015. It offers a variety of movies ranging from different genres to different languages, so the students could be exposed to different style of movies.