by Nicholas Johnston
Soon in Leuven Editor
50 years ago Leuven, like many cities world-wide was witnessing mass student revolts. The film, Leuven ‘68 being shown at Cinema Zed Thursday the 13th at 21h00 documents the story of Leuven in revolt. For the first time, after request from international faculty and students, the film shall be shown with English subtitles.
In Leuven ‘68, viewers get to peer back half a century to the fiery year of 1968 when students and workers around the world, especially in Europe, were in revolt. Leuven at this time was unique, in that students from the left, the right, and the center shared a vision and actively pursued it: an autonomous Dutch speaking university in Flanders. At the time, Leuven was administered and taught in French, and tensions over the linguistic fate of the region had sparked and flared to the point of riots in the streets against the police. The documentary is set against familiar streets, which though peaceful now, had been the site of a militant struggle.
Drawing on archival footage and interviews the documentary tries to let as much of history speak for itself as it may. Uncanny scenes of fighting on the Oudemarkt and Naamsestraat shake us from the present for a moment and force us to think of where we’ve come from, and how. However quaint Leuven’s cobbled lanes may seem now, we can’t forget they were fought for. The film is the fourth in a series of historical films about Leuven and the opportunity on Thursday to see it with English subtitles is a one time chance, so don’t miss out!
For more information, visit the Cinema Zed Website here: