Movie poster for It’s a Wonderful Life Wikimedia Commons

Several alumni—spanning nearly every year from the 1970s to the 1990s—cited the annual showing of It’s a Wonderful Life on Grounds, including Adam Wasserman (Med ’88), who wrote: “I grew up in a Jewish family in Philadelphia. This film had never been on my radar. My friends convinced me to see it. Absolutely amazing! My wife is Christian, and we would try to watch around Christmas regularly. The message crosses over to all faiths, and I still recall fondly the first time I saw it at UVA.”

Purple Rain at the movie theater on the Corner. Loved Prince, and seeing/hearing it on the big screen with a lot of people was so much fun.”
—Teresa Green Cooper (Darden ’86) Levi Seacer/Wikimedia Commons
Still from Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Portrait of a Lady on Fire at the Virginia Film Fest. Unforgettable. I was struggling not to cry throughout.”
—Zola Price (Col ’21) MK2 Films

O Brother, Where Art Thou? at the Alderman Theatre. I have fond memories of the discount movies there and that wild black-and-white floor tile!”
—Meghan Hewitt Castner (Col ’04)

The Graduate. I remember hiking downtown with some fraternity brothers to see it at the Paramount, and then going back a few days later, probably the first time I ever did that. It became the iconic film of our generation.”
—Roger Wiley (Col ’67)

Monty Python and the Holy Grail—shown on a big sheet in the Lile-Maupin arena the weekend before classes started, with some UVA-provided libations.”
—Tom Cook (Comm ’81)

Forrest Gump LaserDiscs
“My first-year suite ironically watched Forrest Gump on LaserDisc. Clemons had a huge selection of LaserDiscs, and my suitemate happened to have a player. The novelty wears off when you have to swap out the giant discs in the middle of the movie.”
—Eric Cunningham (Col ’06)
Movie poster for Reefer Madness
Reefer Madness at the Paramount, one of the Midnight Madness movies. I had an ‘I’m a flick freak’ button.”
—Peyton Clark (Col ’72) Wikimedia Commons

“I saw The English Patient at the theater at least three times while I was at UVA. That movie just took my breath away.”
—Liz Pease (Col ’97)

Wait Until Dark at the Paramount Theater. Near the end of the movie, the blind heroine is being stalked by criminals in her apartment. She breaks all the light bulbs so the apartment is in complete darkness. Every light in the theater, even the EXIT signs, was turned off so that the audience was in total darkness. It was a terrifyingly wonderful movie, still one of my all-time favorites!”
—Nancy-Lee Yowell Kozub (Col ’68, Educ ’77)

“Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which I saw in Wilson Hall as an undergrad. I was spellbound by that movie.”
—Jeffrey D. Peterson (Col ’81)

Pink Flamingos as the midnight show at Wilson Hall. I had already read the review discussing the good, bad, and social statements made by the movie; it lived up to that review. It rings more true today.”
—LeRoy Southmayd III (Col ’77)

Still from Get Out
Get Out. Great movie just as a pure thriller and also as a symbolic representation.”
—Anthony Corso (Col ’19) Universal Pictures
Still from Giant
Giant. A portion of the film was filmed in Keswick at the train depot in Charlottesville.”
—Dan T. Russler (Col ’58) Library of Congress

Jojo Rabbit in Culbreth Theater as part of the Virginia Film Festival in 2019. It was an absolutely phenomenal experience. The film beautifully constructed a thoughtful satire on World War II, all while keeping the audience bursting with laughter.”
—Devin Gardner (Engr ’22)

The Princess Bride, on a VCR in the suite lounge.”
—Matt Crudello (Comm ’96)

Austin Powers, of course! Could anything be funnier to the college-age mind?”
—Stephanie De Falco (Col ’00)