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Film Series Packs a ‘Lunchbox’

by Rod Jones

The Oklahoma City University Film Institute’s series will continue its 34th year at 2 p.m. Feb. 7 with Ritesh Batra’s “The Lunchbox”in the Kerr McGee Auditorium of Meinders School of Business. The school is located at N.W. 27th Street and McKinley Avenue.

Admission to all films in the series is free. The series is supported in part by the Thatcher Hoffman Smith Endowment Fund and endowments through OCU and the Oklahoma City Community Foundation.

In “The Lunchbox,” middle-class Mumbai housewife Ila is trying to add some spice to her marriage, this time through her cooking. She desperately hopes a new recipe will finally arouse her neglectful husband. She prepares a special lunchbox to be delivered to him at work, but, unbeknownst to her, it is mistakenly delivered to another office worker, a lonely man on the verge of retirement. Curious about the lack of reaction from her husband, she puts a little note in the following day's lunchbox, in the hopes of getting to the bottom of the mystery. This begins a series of lunchbox notes between her and the man, and the mere comfort of communicating with a stranger anonymously soon evolves into an unexpected friendship. The two begin to discover a new sense of self even if lost in a virtual relationship that could jeopardize both their realities.

The theme of this year’s season is based on Viktor Frankl’s classic book “Man’s Search for Meaning.”Harbour Winn, director of the series, said the theme is intended to help participants come to understand the purpose of suffering.

“The films in this series stress the importance of an individual’s attitude to existence,” Winn said. “Even when life seems restricted by external forces, we can choose the attitude with which we live and make meaning, to find value.”

A discussion session follows each film screening for those who wish to participate. The remaining dates and films in the series are:

* Feb. 21, Asghar Farhadi’s “About Elly”

* March 6, Andrey Zvyagintsev’s “Leviathan”

For more information about the series, call 405-208-5472 or visit okcu.edu/film-lit.

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