The Campus Kick-off kerfluffle

Campus Kick-Off is a time of celebration. Clubs and organizations all around campus will have booths and activities for both newcomers and campus veterans alike. For students taking six or more credits this semester, there’s a free barbeque, sports, sales, comedy routines and a walk-in movie on the Cuddy Quad.

Last year’s showing of “The Avengers” was a big hit, and rightfully so — it was a movie that got viewers hyped for celebration. A tale of legendary heroes rising against the odds to conquer the most daunting of obstacles was very fitting for a crowd that was ready to surmount the challenges of tests and studies.

At first, this year’s walk-in movie was going to be “Iron Man 3,” which is fitting considering that it’s, for all intents and purposes, a direct continuation of the story of “The Avengers.”

However, not everyone enjoyed “Iron Man 3,” and some called for a more universally acclaimed hit — some suggested “Star Trek: Into Darkness” — and the committee behind the kick-off listened. But maybe people should have been careful what they wished for.

The film is now “Warm Bodies,” a romantic comedy that retells the tragic story of “Romeo and Juliet” through the lens of a zombie apocalypse. Although it was a hit with audiences, its ad campaigns seem to attract the “Twilight” crowd more than anybody else — which, considering “Twilight’s” less than favorable perception, isn’t the best choice to draw in new students.

However, there is something to be said about survivors of a post-pandemic world fighting the good fight and finding love in the most unlikely of places.

Still, even if its themes work on an empathetic level, there’s still that meddling reputation that paranormal romantic films have. But if people won’t attract an audience, what will?

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The movie should be something popular, adventurous and spectacular to look at. It should cling to themes that will get students hyped for the semester. But it should also serve as a climax to the summer vacation that every student on campus has enjoyed.

If you have any Campus Kick-Off suggestions, including good movies to show, feel free to let Student Life and Leadership know about it at 907-786-1215, or send an email to uaa_kickoff@uaa.alaska.edu.

In the meantime, I’ll still hold out for “Django Unchained” to be shown.