Exploring movie theater culture in Boise

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“Young Frankenstein,” “Beetlejuice” and “The Shining” are films that are being shown at the Egyptian Theatre as part of their Boise Classic Movies program on Oct. 16, 19 and 20. While plenty of people have already seen these movies, experiencing them on the big screen is something that students should take advantage of.

According to Destiny, the director of the Egyptian Theatre, films at the theatre are more of a community event than anything else.


“Films in our venue bring a community experience, hanging out with friends and family, meeting new people, dressing up for costume contests and enjoying your favorite films on big screen,” Destiny said. “It’s an adventure to take you away from the everyday grind.”

Last year, the Egyptian showed cult classic, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” and Noah Russell, junior film major and president of the Boise State Film Club, attended the event.

“They opened up with a costume contest and bringing people up on stage. (There was) a lot of interaction, lots of yelling and screaming during the actual thing itself, which I think for certain movies is fantastic,” Russell said.

The Egyptian Theatre also hosted the Narrative Television Initiative’s (NTVI) premiere of “And Beyond,” a student-led television series produced at Boise State. Russell attended the screening, stating that it was “a really cool” experience.

“A lot of people I knew were there, (and) a lot of people were getting class credit. And of course, getting to see the people that were actually on the screen, that was really cool.” Russell said.

Ryan Cannon, director of the NTVI, found that premiering “And Beyond” at the Egyptian created a more meaningful viewing experience for the cast and crew.

“At the end, we brought everyone. Professionals, students, faculty, everyone came up onto the stage,” Ryan said. “It was a big group. I was surprised.”

According to Cannon, there’s a lot to be said for how some films were intended to be viewed.

“Watching a film together in the dark with an audience and no distractions, I think most people would agree that’s a pretty unique experience,” Cannon said. “Some films really merit that.”

While there are some films that thrive on the big screen, according to Russell, this is a very special time for the film experience due to the versatility of technology.

“There are some movies that you want to experience in your bed, tucked in with your laptop; Some things you’ll watch little bits and pieces of on your phone, but I don’t think those things can ever really replace the theater experience,” Russell said. “Because it’s different. It’s a different experience.”

Diverse movie-watching experiences are a vital part of a film community. According to Cannon, there are plenty of gatherings for film lovers in the Boise area, but getting involved can be a struggle for some students that don’t know where to go.

“There’s always festivals and events,” Cannon said. “We’re a small film community right now, but there’s a lot of energy and there’s a lot of things going on.

As a film and television arts major, Russell said that there is a unique nature of the local and academic film community.

“Without that sort of structure, you’re never gonna get that many people who are as passionate as you are,” Russell said. “I think the coolest thing about studying movies and film is the idea that you have a stronger community than you’re ever going to have out on your own.”



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