Category Archives: Movies

Southern Circuit film series debuts for a third year at Wingate

Ryan McKeel, Staff Writer

The Union County Community Arts Council and the George A. Batte, JR. Fine Arts Center at Wingate University have joined together for the third straight year to sponsor multiple free film screenings as part of the Southern Circuit Film Series.

The next film in the series, at 7 p,m. Wednesday, will be “Dalya’s Other Country.”

Founded in 1975 as a community project attempting to build on southern heritage, South Arts, the creative organization behind the film tour, is the largest artistic council in the southeast. The Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers, often referred to simply as the Southern Circuit, is a brainchild of South Arts and is the nation’s first regional tour of independent filmmakers.

“Southern Circuit was developed to connect audiences with new, independent films that they normally wouldn’t have an opportunity to experience,” said Teresa Hollingsworth, Senior Program Director at South Arts in a 2014 interview. “We send directors into communities for screenings as well as audience discussions about their work and the filmmaking process.

The Southern Circuit will be visiting Wingate University for the third year in a row. With free admission and Lyceum credit available to students, the tour aims to provide both the filmmakers and audience members with an opportunity to grow.

“South Arts works collaboratively with screening partners to expand their programming and to provide audiences with the opportunity to meet filmmakers and learn about the art of filmmaking,” says the Circuit’s website.

Laura Kratt, Director of Cultural Events at the Batte, graciously noted the generosity the Union County Community Arts Council in their grant sponsorship of the films. “None of this would be possible without the help of the arts council,” said Kratt. “I hope that students engage in a productive conversation with the film’s directors.”

The films that will be screened at the Batte center each have a different genre and theme, yet all will tackle various global topics.

Between “Do Not Resist”, a film that explores the militarization of local police departments—in their tactics, training, and acquisition of equipment—since 9/11, and “Dalya’s Other Country”, a project that tells the nuanced story of members of a family displaced by the Syrian conflict, audience members will explore the stories of people and organizations affected in various ways by wartime tragedies.

While viewing both “Swim Team”, a film about parents with a child on the autism spectrum who form a competitive swim team, or “First Lady of the Revolution”, the remarkable story of Henrietta Boggs, audience members will admire the passion and endurance felt by those of us with a powerful mission.

All viewers will find a common idea of hope in the films. The important message disguised in different global experiences is something that artists and community members alike can bond over. Audience members will have the opportunity to engage in a rich dialogue with the film directors about the content and impact of the films after each screening in a Q & A session.

More information on the films, dates and show times can be found at battecenter.org

Edited by: Brea Childs

Photot Credit: Batte Center

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NCG movie offers a great movie experience to the Monroe area

Andrew Elliot, Staff Writer

You open one of the many doors available, and you are greeted by the smell of delicious popcorn. The friendly staff greets you from across the room over the hum of the icee machines; “Hi! Welcome to NCG!” they call. Now this, is a movie theater!

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Photo Source: NCG Movies website

Many of the locals have taken the opportunity to go and spend the day at the new NCG (Neighborhood Cinema Group) Cinema Monroe. The first run theater is located at 1911 Dickerson Blvd. in Union Square; where the old theater was when it closed in 2012. In 2015, the wait was over for people looking for a place to catch the latest movies as NCG opened its doors on December 12th.

NCG Monroe is a place the whole family can come and enjoy the latest blockbusters; NCG is wheelchair accessible and hosts birthday parties. The theater has eight screens and is open seven days a week; NCG is open 365 days a year.

The ticket prices are $8 for adults and $6 for seniors, students, with valid I.D, military, and children under 12 years of age; $6 matinee tickets are available before 6 p.m. and $5 tickets on Reel Deal Tuesdays. The theater accepts credit cards and cash; as well as reward vouchers from the NCG Club Card, free on purchase.

If you decide to go to see a movie, be sure to arrive early, should your movie be a popular hit. Parking is available in front of the theater.

When you enter the theater, you will buy your tickets at the registers on the right; there are plenty of concession items to choose from such as popcorn, candy, nachos and pretzels; all items are discounted on Reel Deal Tuesdays as well.

After buying your tickets and concessions, you will take your popcorn bucket to the popcorn counter; where you can get unlimited refills throughout your movie.

The popcorn is best when you ask for the popcorn server to fill the bucket halfway, so that you can apply butter and flavoring to make your already tasty popcorn even more delicious; the popcorn server will then fill the rest of your bucket while you fill your cup with either a coke product drink or an icee from the frozen and Coke Freestyle machines on either side of the popcorn counter.

On your ticket, there will be a number for the theater, ranging from one to eight. On the far side of the theater, are theaters one thru five; on the side nearest the counters, are theaters six thru eight.

After you give your ticket stub to the ticket taker, if there are any the day you go, you are ready to enter the theater and sit in there comfortable reclining seats; just make sure you don’t fall asleep and miss your movie!

For more information on tickets and birthday party hosting, go to https://ncgmovies.com/monroe/ or call them at (980)-313-8503

Edited by: Brea Childs

Wingate University Celebrates Women’s History Month with debut of Maya Angelou documentary

Nick Anta, Staff Writer

Wingate University kicked off Women’s History month Tuesday by screening Maya Angelou’s documentary, “And Still I Rise” with a discussion lead by producer/co-director Rita Coburn Whack.

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Photo source: Rogerebert.com

The film, which took over 6 years to make, showed a very intimate side of the singer, dancer, author, producer, playwright, poet and civil rights activist.

Mrs. Whack admitted that she felt “drawn to Maya” at a very young age. “I remember reading this book of poetry with a black woman on the back. I remember because it was the first time I’d ever seen a black author on the back of a book, let alone a woman” said Mrs. Whack.

She had begun sending candles and letters to Angelou’s representatives around that time in an attempt to show her how much of an impact she had. “As cheesy as it sounds, I’d go pick out these little candles and write her letters talking about how much she influenced me and my little lines of poetry along with them” said Mrs. Whack.

Years later, she would get her chance to finally interview Maya Angelou, while working for the Oprah Winfrey show. She wouldn’t know it at the time, but that was the start of a relationship that would ultimately allow her to complete the documentary, years later.

“That interview, along with a few other times that we met, showed Maya that she could trust me. That I wasn’t out to make a buck” said Mrs. Whack. The documentary proved the trust, as Maya gave details about past marriages, the feelings she had on her son’s possible paralysis, the assassination of MLK and many other sensitive topics.

Ultimately, the lyceum event left many students with feelings of admiration for the accomplishments of Maya, a woman of color in the civil rights era. “It was really powerful to see how she could accomplish all of that after being abandoned by her real family and sent away” said Zarron Harvey, a Senior at Wingate University.

“I think she’s a great example of just how much a woman can accomplish if she fights through what life throws at her” said Katie Bludau, a Junior at Wingate University.

The documentary will be airing on PBC intermittently throughout the month of March and will be available for purchase soon.  

Edited By: Brea Childs

Split Film Review

Alex Taylor, Staff Writer

M. Night Shyamalan delivers a commercially successful film through his psychological horror film Split. Split details the 23 distinct personalities of the kidnapper, Kevin Wendell Crumb, who traps three teenage girls in an underground lair. The film revolves around the idea that Kevin’s mental stasis, body chemistry, and physiology are adjustable through giving different personalities the “spotlight” in his brain. 

split-movie
credit by gostatic.com

While in the lair, the three girls are tormented or tasked with peculiar demands from each of his personality. James McAvoy does an excellent job while playing the role of Kevin. As the film progresses, you fully understand how Kevin bends between the personalities.

The 23 “known” personalities of Kevin are collectively known as “The Horde”, but the spotlight is mainly given to Barry, Dennis, Patricia, and Hedwig. Scenes of Barry are seen while he has sessions with his longtime therapist named Dr. Fletcher. She (Dr. Fletcher) fully understands the complexities within Kevin’s brain and has been seeing “Barry” for emergency sessions because she knows something is troubling The Horde.

Dennis is a somewhat violent personality that holds an obsession with cleanliness and young women. As seen in the trailer, he is the personality that decides to kidnap the girls to serve some unnamed purpose.

Patricia is revealed when Kevin is overheard talking to himself with a female’s voice. Kevin presents Patricia to the girls while wearing a dress and ensures they will not be harmed because they serve a greater purpose for a superior personality.

Hedwig is a 9-year-old personality and attempts to befriend the captives and play games. He tells stories to the girls about a superior personality called “The Beast” that can do awful things, and has grotesque features and eats people.  

Shyamalan envelops the film with stark eerie shots and a plotline that has very little shocker” moments that are rampant among modern horror films. The soundtrack, much like the unnerving film, switches tones and styles like how Kevin switches between his personalities.

Playing on the idea that one can change their physiology based on personality allows the film to reach into more abstract areas when developing the plot. As always, Shyamalan delivers a shocking twist at the end that will leave many viewers wondering what is next. Overall, I feel Shyamalan has presented a solid thriller feature that will appease many of his critics.

Edited by: Brea Childs