Walking into the Douglass Theatre is like transporting back to the 1920s, when it was in its prime. Its elaborate ceilings, beautifully painted and molded walls and rows and rows of dark green velvet seats are visually stunning and hard to look away from.
The smell of popcorn immediately wafts in your direction, and the atmosphere fills you with that “movie theater feeling” where you know you are about to be completely enamored by something magical for the next couple of hours.
I experienced this myself, as I was a viewer at their Jan. 10 showing of “The French Dispatch," but I noticed that there were only a few people close to my age in attendance. Many students do not normally go to these screenings, so they miss out on seeing amazing cinema on the big local screen.
Robert Fieldsteel, head of the Macon Film Guild, said that students would get many things out of coming to see the films, including “a great image and great sound, much better than watching something streaming on TV."
"Most importantly, the movies that we offer give you a different kind of experience," Fieldsteel said. "Hollywood films tend to be fit to a rubric (…) and our independent and foreign language films have a different aesthetic that is refreshing.”
I encourage every Mercer student to attend and experience something new and exciting. Foreign, indie and international films are some of the most well-crafted films, and it is amazing that the Douglass Theatre and the Macon Film Guild give them their time to be shown on a big screen in a beautiful theater with an electric atmosphere.
Commercial theaters do not give these films the platform they deserve, so going to the Douglass to see these movies is a unique experience you cannot get ordinarily.
“What we offer, you can’t get anywhere else around here,” Fieldsteel said.
The upcoming screenings hosted by the Macon Film Guild include showings of the “Julia Documentary” on Tuesday, Jan. 18. The documentary focuses on the famous cook and TV personality Julia Child, who pioneered women celebrity chefs and made cooking easy for everyone to follow along with and enjoy.
Following Childs’s documentary, the Douglass Theatre is showing the film “C’mon C’mon” on Sunday, Feb. 13, which stars Joaquin Pheonix as a journalist who discovers new meaning to life through his relationship with his nephew when they are thrown together in a story about family and connection.
These screenings of movies that are “off the beaten path” are only $5 to attend, which makes for a fun and financially responsible way to have a night out on the town, especially for a college student.
If you are interested in seeing these films or any films in the future, the Guild hosts showings on the second Sunday of every month at the Douglass Theatre. The standard showing times are 2 p.m., 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. for each movie.
The Guild can also be found on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, where they often post reminders for screenings, trailers for upcoming movies and articles, as well as critiques of the films they show and have shown in the past.