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A recurring and increasingly prevalent theme in film is “the end of the world as we know it,” and Okanagan College’s Dr. Tim Walters has built a season of “Classics at the Classic” that feature nine dystopian and apocalyptic flicks.
The next film in the series air on Feb. 6 at 5 p.m. at the Salmar Classic Theatre. Walters, who teaches film at the College, organizes the series for students in his second-year university transfer course – Studies in Reading Film – but it is open to the general public as well. General admission is $5.
Despite the seemingly dark subject matter, Walters says that he was attracted to the theme precisely because of the growing range of movies that explore this terrain.
“The desire to show audiences the end of the world, or a world gone bad, is almost as old as film itself, but one that has become increasingly prevalent in mainstream culture in the past few decades, and is now a recurring context for not just sci-fi or horror films, but comedies, Christian and secular thrillers, and blockbuster young adult film series like The Hunger Games and The Maze Runner.”
Walters ranks this season’s line-up of films as the best yet. “Focusing on this genre allows us to see how the idea of a dystopian world has changed over time and between cultures, which can help us understand our current anxieties. It is also a theme that allow us to enjoy a surprisingly broad range of films—action and zombie movies, historical epics, psychological dramas, etc.—from some of the greatest directors in film history.”
“When planning these series, I’m mindful of the fact that Salmon Arm has an unusually sophisticated film-going public, and I think local audiences are going to really appreciate these films, almost none of which has ever been screened in town before.”
The program began with a dystopian double bill of Fritz Lang’s visionary masterpiece “Metropolis” (1927), followed by Bong Joon Ho’s revolutionary sci-fi action thriller “Snowpiercer” (2013) at 7:30 p.m. The final film of the series will be voted on by students taking the course and announced in mid-March.
Jan. 30 – 5 p.m. Metropolis (1927) 7:30 p.m. Snowpiercer (2013)
Feb. 6 – 5 p.m. Children of Men (2006)
Feb. 27 – 7 p.m. Melancholia (2011)
March 6 – 5 p.m. Blade Runner (1982)
March 13 – 5 p.m. 28 Days Later (2002)
March 20 – 5 p.m. The New World (2005)
March 27 – 7 p.m. A Clockwork Orange (1971)
April 3 – 5 p.m. To be announced. The choice of film will be voted on by the class.