Social aspect of movies perseveres in quarantine

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Students watch recently released film “Hamilton” through a zoom call.

Summer days are filled with children’s joyful laughter and the smell of a classic Sunday barbecue with family and friends. However, during this quarantine those typical afternoons seem more like a forgotten memory.

Summer 2020 took a toll on the well-being of millions across the globe. Fortunately, this pandemic is also allowing people to get creative with new ways of socially interacting with their friends and family; particularly how people are watching movies. 

Video conferencing apps like Zoom, Google Hangouts and Skype are being used to stay connected to people from different places, while maintaining social distancing. Features on these programs, such as screen sharing, allows the host to display images, videos and stream movies onto everyone’s screens. 

“I’ve set up Zoom and Skype calls and have created Netflix parties with my friends, so we can all watch a movie together. Having each other on the phone to share our reactions and thoughts about what we’re watching makes it feel like we’re having a virtual sleepover,” sophomore Haylee Lockwood said. 

With the rise of streaming services like Disney Plus and Netflix, many have found comfort in watching films from the safety and comfort of their homes. Besides the use of video chatting to interact with people from a distance, many have found that watching movies and shows with family has brought them closer together. 

“We didn’t spend too much time together because [my father] got home late and I usually was already asleep or about to anyway, but since quarantine has us in home most of the time we have spent more time together and bonded more over it,” sophomore Diego Perez said.

While quarantine has been a stressful time for everyone on a global scale, these moments spent with loved ones takes their minds off of the stress that follows each day. However, this alternative seems more temporary than what the future actually holds.

It’s no surprise that the movie theaters hold a special place in people’s hearts, which is why the gradual reopening of cinemas has people anxious to be sitting in front of the silver screen with buttered popcorn on their laps once more.

“From the beginning, I really didn’t understand why it took movie theaters so long to open up because movie theaters are probably the one place where you can actually social distance and stay safe. Just close off every three seats,” junior Harper Buchwald said. 

Freshman Zach Finklestein has similar sentiments.

“That experience of the environment, being in the theater, buying merchandise, all that. We take the experience with us,”  Finkelstein said.

Whether a person wants to host online movie nights with friends or spend five hours a day binge-watching their favorite series by themselves, quarantine has not stopped the community from engaging in these marathons. In fact, it’s enhanced these times a little more.