The days of staid Beck Hall are nearly over, and with their passing comes the possibility that upon the excellent site may be erected a moving picture theatre. Such a project the University authorities would doubtless resent, but their opinion when substantiated by nothing stronger than impotent feeling, has often been completely disregarded by aggressive investors.
The temptingly obvious advantages of a cinema near Harvard Square are its accessibility and the fact that all carfares and time are saved. Against this are arrayed the numerous undesirable possibilities of a local theatre. The very advantage of proximity becomes a disadvantage, as a number of colleges have already discovered. The nightly "movie" habit is easy to form and attended with many harmful consequences. Then there is the possibility that a local theatre would be turned into a collegiate madhouse, with unruly riot, peanut throwing, and cheap witticism. The banality often shown at a Class Smoker would be there in that case--only intensified to a high degree.
At present Harvard Square and its envirous offer only its sidewalks to the noctural Hegira from Central Square and North Cambridge. A local theatre would serve to welcome this class, which now has no place of congregation. The theatre would detract largely from the academic dignity and repose which at present is hardly holding its own against constant inroads, and it would complicate the already confused lives of the student body.