Fifth Formers found new film club

Movie Club – An invitation from the movie club’s Instagram page for all to attend their Friday meetings – via mainlineflimclub instagram

The TV has seen its fair share of use this past month. Bingers and newbies alike struggle to fill the hours of the day and find themselves in the same, mundane place; they migrate back to the couch, zoning out to surface-level, brainless television. Fifth Formers Matthew Schwartz and Franklin Dai, Haverford’s representatives in the interschool Movie Club, made it their mission to create an engaging, deep-dive movie experience. They gathered students from a handful of local schools who craved intellectual conversations and a good reason to watch movies. 

     The club came into existence about halfway between the school closure and now. There was a desire, and a few club leaders were ready to make it happen.

     “We’ve watched Inception this past week and Perks of Being a Wallflower two weeks ago. We meet every Friday at 7 pm,” Schwartz explained.

     Thanks to engaging content and strong advertising amongst the leaders, the club has seen great success. The club meets on Zoom for discussions and watches together on Netflix Party.

     Two Fifth Form Baldwin students, Diane Tian and Emma Gantard, helped Schwartz and Dai get the club up and running.

     Tian said, “Although it is relatively new, it has generated a lot of interest from many people from Baldwin, Haverford, and Harriton. We even had to split up the Netflix Party into two because there were too many people on the server.”

     The leaders handled the club’s growing popularity in stride, making adjustments and allowing all eager students to participate. Most clubs have shriveled in number of dedicated members because online school can be stressful and time-consuming: however, Movie Club has thrived.

     Yes, watching movies with friends is fun, but the reason for its success is the discussion piece once the movie is over.

     “It’s relaxed, but we still strive to analyze what made each film good and what made it bad,” Schwartz said. “We are always glad to hear more voices and opinions.”

     This is not to say that members are all movie experts. There are a handful of experienced cinema fans like Schwartz, the annual Academy Awards reporter and esteemed Main Line Movie Reviews critic. However, students from those three schools, regardless of their movie knowledge, enjoy comparing their thoughts with others.

     Movie Club allows students to take more away from the movie than they would from watching alone or with family.

     “When we watch cinema on our own, many things go unnoticed,” Gantard said. “Having time to discuss and hear other people’s views allows the watcher to truly unpack what the screen has to offer.”

  “When we watch cinema on our own, many things go unnoticed,” Gantard said. “Having time to discuss and hear other people’s views allows the watcher to truly unpack what the screen has to offer.”

     The club is also an opportunity to meet new people.

     “Our club is very diverse,” Tian said, “and it offers a chance to get to know others from different grades and different schools.”

     Dai wants even more people to join the weekly calls.

     “If you love movies, or are even just interested in movies, join to have a fun time and talk about them,” Dai said. “We started this club to share our love of movies with the community while we’re all separated during this quarantine.”

Author: Tyler Zimmer '21

Managing Editor Tyler Zimmer '21 has written for each section of The Index since 2018. He previously served as Arts Editor. In addition to journalism, Tyler plays baseball and golf, and he is often found working in the art studio.