Wake Forest’s Year of Ethics and Honor to feature film series

A series of films, chosen for the various moral and ethical dilemmas that the characters face, will be shown on campus during Wake Forest University’s Year of Ethics and Honor.

“While the movies selected for this year’s theme of Ethics and Honor cannot offer solutions for the social and individual conflicts that abide within and around us, they give us some models for evaluating which issues are at heart trivial and which issues determine moral virtue,” said Candyce Leonard, associate professor of humanities and co-organizer of the film series.

All films will be shown on Sundays in Worrell Professional Center, Room 1308, at 8 p.m. A discussion will follow each film.

The series will open Sept. 10 with “Tokyo Story,” a 1953 Japanese film directed by Yasujiro Ozu. In the film, an elderly couple living in a small town visits their children in Tokyo. The film deals with old age, the disappointments parents sometimes have with their children and the responsibilities children have to their parents.

The second film will be “The Sweet Hereafter,” on Sept. 24. The 1997 Canadian film is based on the true story of a school bus accident that claimed the lives of nearly half of a town’s children.

The Oct. 15 film will be “On the Waterfront,” the 1954 Marlon Brando classic. Directed by Elia Kazan, the film deals with moral courage and cowardice in a film set on the New York Harbor docks.

The Nov. 12 film, “Paths of Glory,” was Stanley Kubrick’s first film. In the 1957 film, a World War I French army officer defends three infantrymen on trial by a military court for cowardice. “Paths of Glory” will be shown as a double feature with “Casualties of War,” a 1989 Brian de Palma film set in Vietnam and starring Michael J. Fox.

On January 21, Woody Allen’s 1992 film, “Husbands and Wives,” will be shown. The film follows two couples (Gabe and Judy, Sally and Jack) as their respective relationships fall apart.

The Feb. 11 film, “Raise the Red Lantern,” is a 1991 Chinese film. Based on a novel by Su Tong, it is the second film directed by Zhang Yimou to be banned in his home country. The film tells the story of Songlian, a 19-year-old who is forced by her stepmother to become the fourth wife to a wealthy man enjoying the privileges of a feudal system that has lingered into the 1920s.

Spike Lee’s 1992 film, “Malcolm X,” will be shown on March 4. The film traces the militant Black Muslim leader’s life from street hustler to prison inmate to religious convert.

On April 8, a double feature will conclude the film series. “The Bicycle Thief,” an Italian film that won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1949 will be shown first. The plot centers on two days in the lives of a young couple who are struggling in the post-war years. The second film, “The Thief,” is a 1997 film set in Stalinist Russia that follows the tragic experiences that shape a young boy’s life.

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