Image courtesy of The New York Times.
By Maggie Lorenzen
As students ended their eighth week on campus, familiar sights and settings continued to reemerge on campus with the reopening of the Student Union Theater, or, as it is affectionately known by the campus community, the SUT.
On Thursday, October 8th, in the cave-like building at the bottom of the soon-to-be Biehl Commons, the SUT started again screening movies at 7:30pm on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. Free to all students and including a drink and box of candy, the SUT poses a safe way to enjoy some normalcy in this difficult time of isolation. All seats are marked to enforce social distancing policies, and patrons are required to wear masks while not eating or drinking to continue protecting the bubble. A community staple in the past, the SUT’s reopening marks a beginning of normalcy and social activities on campus like in semesters past.
The first movie to make an appearance this semester was adequately timed with the upcoming Halloween season. A modern mystery with a strong aura of the Clue board game, Knives Out is an exhilarating fan favorite featuring Chris Evans, Daniel Craig, Jamie Lee Curtis, and many highly reputable others.
Director Rian Johnson captivates viewers through unexpected twists, subtle elements of fear, and snaps of wit, and each minute of the two-hour thriller draws the audience further and further in. The character central to the story, Harlan Thrombey (portrayed by Christopher Plummer), is murdered by someone in attendance of his 85th birthday party, and thus an investigation follows. However, as the story continues, the suspect is not as obvious, nor is Harlan as vulnerable as viewers might originally believe. The main detective as played by Daniel Craig searches the entire cast of the dramatic family for the most viable suspect, yet the ordeal is much more complicated than first expected. Johnson creates a masterfully crafted whodunit based on a classic Agatha Christie.
A must-see, especially in the dystopia of today, Knives Out as played in the SUT allows the audience to play along as they form theories of their own while sitting in the cave underneath campus.
The reopening of the SUT is a public display of the University’s initiatives to keep elements of normalcy on the Mountain, even while balancing student and campus safety with appropriate amounts of activity.
Ever since the sudden halt to all on-campus functions last semester, residents have been weary of gathering in groups, especially indoors for fear of an outbreak. However, all organizations on campus have worked diligently to provide suitable ways to gather and enjoy life together as is deemed essential to all in the Sewanee community and even outlined in the University motto, “Behold how good and pleasant it is when brethren dwell together in unity” The reopening of the SUT marks not only steps towards normalcy, but also a camps- and community-wide stance to protect the bubble and its inhabitants, both from illness and boredom.