Kent State welcomes 2009 Global Lens Film Series

Katie Kennedy

Kent State will show a series of international films from around the world as part of the 2009 Global Lens Film Series this month. The series will present films from regions not typically seen in the mainstream media and offer unique perspectives.

“This year’s lineup of films, from Central Asia to Latin America, is artistically strong and well balanced – it’s one of our best yet,” said Susan Weeks Coulter, board chair of The Global Film Initiative. Global Lens is an annual, touring film series by the Global Film Initiative that supports the distribution of critically acclaimed works from around the world.

The series, put together by the Global Film Initiative, showcases 10 films of developing countries: Argentina, Brazil, China, Ecuador, Indonesia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Morocco and Mozambique. All of the full-length feature films will be in the original country’s native language with English subtitles.

“It’s an opportunity to look at the big issues in day to day life in the developing world,” said Daniel Boomhower, performing arts librarian in the University Libraries and Media Services. “In a way, you can relate that to the American experience.”

The films will be shown in the Kiva beginning Oct. 16 through Oct. 25. Screenings are free and open to the public. All films, with the exception of a matinee on Sunday at 2:30 p.m., will begin at 7:30 p.m. A complete schedule can be found on the University Library’s Web site. Each film will be introduced by a faculty member with expertise from that particular country. After each film, viewers are encouraged to participate in a discussion forum.

This is the 6th international film series that Kent State has shown. There has been a series every semester for the past 3 years, but this is the largest and most diverse.

“It’s not necessarily a polished version of what’s going on in the world,” said Boomhower. “And that, I think, is important.”

The international series showcases a variety of filmmaking. Although each film was made with state of the art equipment, some may look intentionally unrefined.

“The outlook in the films is surprising in that way,” said Boomhower.

In partnership with the Akron Art Museum, each film will be shown twice. All 10 of the films will be shown in the Kiva on the Kent campus, three films will be shown at the Stark Campus at the end of the month and the remaining seven will be showcased at the Akron Art Museum in November.

“This is a great opportunity for the museum to expand,” said Boomhower, in regard to the fact that it will bring a multimedia element to the usual two-dimensional art museum.

The library has teamed up with the history department to put on this event. The film series is also co-sponsored by the Kent Student International Film Society, which is funded by undergraduate students.

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