For my first night out in Nashville, I decided to buy tickets to an 8:15 screening of Oldboy at The Belcourt. Just a 10-minute walk from Commons, The Belcourt is Nashville’s nonprofit film center established in 1925. Oldboy is Park Chan-wook’s 2003 cult classic that was recently remastered and re-released in select theaters. For a 20-year-old South Korean movie with subtitles, I expected a near-empty theater. However, I was very pleasantly surprised to see almost every seat full upon walking in.
The previews of upcoming events at The Belcourt completely set the tone before the lights dimmed. A preview for Darren Aronofsky’s The Fountain playing on Wednesday, September 6 immediately sucked me in with its striking visuals. The following preview for the documentary Once Upon a Time in Uganda playing Friday, August 18 was hilarious and heartwarming. After the previews concluded, a short message from Oldboy director, Park Chan-wook, generated plenty of laughter and excitement across the packed theater.
Oldboy itself was twisted beyond imagination, wildly shocking, and surprisingly hilarious at times. Seeing such a unique work of art in a theater packed with people who love movies was unforgettable. To cap off the night, the walk back to Commons was full of discussion about the film’s philosophical themes and ambiguous ending. The Belcourt is truly a special place and exactly how going to the movie theater should be.
The Belcourt offers plenty of events perfect for first-year students looking for something to do on a night out. You can go to a midnight feature of The Big Lebowski on September 2 or meet Greg Sestero, the star of The Room (often dubbed the “Citizen Kane of bad movies”) before watching the movie on September 15. If you love movies or are just looking for something to do, The Belcourt is where it is at.