Movie Night with the Anime Club

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Anime Club, Kristen Williams, Movie, Tyler Butler, Campus Life - By Tyler Butler on Thursday, April 19, 2012 - 05:54

Even though few students were around to observe, a pair of discerning eyes would have noticed that the Whittier College Anime Club occupied Hoover 100 this Friday throughout the night and into Saturday morning. Typically the club, a fledgling student organization founded this year by sophomore Sam Wolfe, meets on Friday afternoons 4:30p.m.

The club meets each week in Hoover 100 and watches four episodes of different shows and disbands afterwards for dinner, but every once in a while they convene for something a bit more substantial, in events known as “Anime Nights.” The purpose of the events is to power through an entire series, and they usually conclude either with the show in question vanquished, or when the group loses steam and heads to bed.

The club recently threw its last Anime Night of the year and it was something of a special occasion. Instead of a single series, the group decided to watch over six feature films.
The movies included some newer releases, older classics and lesser-known gems; all of which sported an impressively varied array of genres and ideas. Among the films screened were a cyberpunk classic, 1995’s Ghost in the Shell, a zany heist film, 1979’s Lupin the 3rd: The Castle Cagliostro and even Wolfe’s favorite Christmas film, 2003’s Tokyo Godfathers.

There were 15 to 20 minute breaks between films they could use to stretch their respective legs, visit the bathroom or chat. The club itself has no real budget to speak of, so official snacks aren’t provided, but there’s a longer break around dinner, and the individual members all made sure to keep themselves fed.

The idea of watching anime for hours on end is a bit daunting to most people, and this is something the club has always taken into account.

The format of a typical meeting is meant to draw people in, introducing them to new shows and hopefully the members of the club itself. The members are in great part friendly, intelligent and always willing to laugh, and the format of the typical meeting reflects this, as well as the film-centric format of this recent event. There weren’t any new faces to my knowledge in the crowd last Friday, but the structure of film as a self-contained story, by nature, solves the problem many of the uninitiated may have.

The story of a long-winded series may not be, and often is not, easily understood. Films that are meant to stand alone do not suffer from such a setback, and an ideal way to draw in those who typically find the idea of taking on a series more daunting. Such inclusive ideas are an example of how this club stands as something interesting and refreshing on this campus, and marks them as a group of accepting young people

Picture by Kristen Williams