Vampires, zombies and werewolves, oh my

As Halloween approaches, there’s no denying that creepy feeling that comes along with the month of October. It’s a good time to watch scary movies and consider all of the ominous things that go bump in the night. UMD is getting in on the spooky scene with several local professors from a variety of backgrounds in a three-part series called The Monster Trifecta. The events include film screenings and lectures on the ins and outs of the horror genre staples: vampires, zombies and werewolves.

The first event kicked off last Friday with a showing of the 1922 silent film “Nosferatu” in the Egyptian Theater at the Masonic Temple in Duluth. Around 150 people attended the event. UMD music professor Justin Rubin accompanied the film on a recently restored antique organ.

“People got the experience of what it was like to go to a movie 90 years ago,” Rubin said.

With one event down, there are two left, set for the next two consecutive Fridays.  Oct. 18 is the third-annual Zombie Fest, which will consist of three academic lectures on the nature of zombies in film and real life.

Philosophy professor Jason Ford will talk about the ethics of the actions one should take immediately after being infected by the walking dead.

After Ford explains the moral implications of being bit by a zombie, UMD Art and Design professor Ryuta Nakajima will give a lecture on zombie make-up effects in film the film industry.

Nathan Carroll, professor in the Department of Communication, Theatre, and Art at the College of St. Scholastica, will give a presentation on the major shifts in the treatment of zombies over the years.

The night will wrap up with another live performance by Rubin, this time for the 1920 film “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” which is said to include the first appearance of a zombie in film.

There will be a short intermission between the lectures and the film. RSOP will give a presentation in the lobby of the theater about what to pack in your bag after the apocalypse strikes.

The following week, on Oct. 25, author Benjamin Percy will perform a reading from his novel “Red Moon,” a modern take on the werewolf myth.

The doors open at 6 p.m. for each of the upcoming events, and the talks begin at 7 p.m. Admission is free for all. Organizers ask for donations that will go to UMD’s food shelf, Champ’s Cupboard.



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