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Travel the world at BYU-I’s international cinema

Students experiencing a new culture for free? Is that a thing? Actually with BYUIdaho’s international movie night it is “a thing.”

On Friday, Spori 35 lit up its screen with an Iranian film titled A Hero. Released last year, this film depicts a man on a short break from his time in prison.

He is given permission to resolve a debt and stay out of prison bars for the rest of his term. The man, Rahim, is faced with moral dilemmas and has to choose what kind of life he wants to lead.

About 50 people showed up to the showing. One audience member — Josh Chapman, a sophomore studying business management— has been coming to these movies for a couple semesters.

“They’re just really interesting, and they’re always super different,” Chapman said. “It’s fun to see different things. Like last time, the last one I went to was like a cute little Brazilian animated movie, and this time it was a depressing Arabic story. I like the variety and it’s free, so why not go?”

International film nights are available for free to students every semester. An updated schedule is posted here on BYUI’s website.

Everyone is invited to experience the culture and stories. The films range from early black and white films to recent releases, with a wide range of languages and cultures featured.

Michael Cornick, career and advising coordinator, has been helping with international movie nights for almost 10 years.

“Oh, I love it,” Cornick said. “My background is in film and I teach film and teach art and humanities, and this is something that’s important to me. I used to watch international cinema at BYU and started watching it when I was a young teenager. I’ve just enjoyed it and I want to share it with others. I think it gives you a perspective of the parts and elements of humanity that are universal. No matter what culture or time period, you can connect to it.”

Students have expressed interest in continuing their tradition of learning about new cultures. The movies are followed by an open discussion led by Cornick. All who attend are welcome to stay to discuss.

“I think it’s just something that you’re not used to, you don’t normally watch these movies on a daily basis,” said Jhaneil Wright, a senior studying pyschology. “I think it’s unique.”

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