Cinematic Conversations: Hunger

Article by John Freeman media by John Freeman


Cinematic Conversations is a club run through Greenville’s Honor’s program where students watch and discuss free movies almost every Wednesday. With the help of Greenville’s Globe Theater, students come to the theater and watch a movie. After the movie they discuss aspects and meanings behind the scenes of the movies with Jake Amundson, the usual host of the movie nights and Director of Campus Film Studies. Students would watch and observe movies like Snow Piercer, Let The Right One In, The Shining and more.

Globe Theater’s entrance. Photo provided by Author


Last Wednesday’s movie was called Hunger, a film directed by Steve McQueen. The movie was based off of the Irish Hunger strike of 1981. Many slow-paced but gripping scenes without music and sometimes without sound enveloped the movie, grim scenes reflecting the torturing lifestyles the Irish political prisoners had to go through described what happened to the Irish prisoners years ago. Steve McQueen’s slower-paced and almost artistic film-style went well with the realistic and bare telling of the story. Very low amounts of dialogue during many scenes, which let students take in the environment, the people, and what they did- in fact it seems that the director was very particular about what sounds could be heard and what sounds couldn’t. In one scene a guard is resting outside in the snow after it is very subtly apparent that he beat a prisoner; everything except his nervous breathing and smoking can be heard during this scene. In another, a riot guard is crying against a wall separating him from the rest of his comrades beating and hitting prisoners into submission; nothing but the clanging of batons against riot shields could be heard.

After the movie Jake Amundson talked over the movie and debated what the many styles of film play the directors used meant and what aspects of the film they reinforced. Much of the discussion went over how different the movie was due to nontraditional style of plot development and slower scenes. Afterwards students gave short verbal reviews, many of them saying they enjoyed the movie but it left them confused and uncomfortable at parts. Many students did begin to see how the movie used different ways besides dialogue to describe and drive the plot of the movie. Most likely due to the different style of film-directing it had and realistic brutality it showed prisoners go through.

Cinema Conversations plays free movies with the help of Globe Theaters almost every Wednesday of the month.


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