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Club adds culture

Anselm Keiser, a senior English major, decided to start the Foreign Film Club where people could watch and discuss foreign mov

Anselm Keiser, a senior English major, decided to start the Foreign Film Club where people could watch and discuss foreign movies last fall.

Rudy de Mattos, a foreign languages instructor and the club’s sponsor, said, “The main goal of the club is to introduce and promote foreign films, provide a forum of discussion and advance awareness of cultural diversity in the student body through the introduction of foreign culture in cinema.”

This club has done an outstanding job introducing a way for students to get in touch with different cultures while learning different languages.

This year, the selection of movies is very diverse, including a movie from each continent.

The Foreign Film Club showed its third film of the year, “The Battle of Algiers,” at 7 p.m. Oct. 24 in the Visual Arts Center, with the purpose of getting students interested in other languages and historic events.

“The Battle of Algiers” is a crucial film that deals with the French-Algerian war that went on from 1954-1962. “The film is a French/Italian movie directed by Gillo Pontecorvo,” de Mattos said. “Most precisely, [it deals] with the guerrilla-style war that took place in the Algerian capital.”

Not only is this club helping students diversify, the club is also providing an outlet for students to see how foreign films can reflect on recent events.

“The movie is considered a landmark film,” Keiser said. “The main reason [for selecting this film] is that it is relevant to today and how to deal with terrorism.”

The movie was considered controversial when it premiered in 1966.

“It is a way in which you can get out of your own perspective and look at parallels between events in the past and events that are happening right now,” Keiser said. “When I first saw it I didn’t think much of it, but now it is more important.”

Students who watched the film saw comparisons between the war in Iraq and the battle of Algiers.

“Algerians wanted independence,” Omar Ghojel, a senior electrical engineering major, said. “They were trying to push out foreign forces out of the country.”

De Mattos said there is a big difference between foreign films and Hollywood movies.

“American films are a product and are meant to entertain,” de Mattos said. “They always have the same ending, the same formula and most of the time they’re not realistic.”

The showings are open to any students, staff and faculty members who are interested in foreign movies. The club is free of cost, and members are not obligated to show up to every viewing. Movies will be played in their original languages but with English subtitles.

We congratulate the Foreign Film Club for adding to Tech’s cultural horizons.

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