Steven Veach

The soundtrack contains two notes that strike fear in the hearts of movie-goers, but for students at Dillon Pool, Jaws was the perfect study break. 

The movie was shown March 28 on a projector set up on the bleachers next to the pool. A row of students reclined comfortably in front of the projector — but instead of leaning back in theater seats, they were sprawled on inner tubes. Every few minutes, they would slip down a large inflatable slide into the water with a great splash.

“I feel like I should be on the beach right now,” said Jessica Lee ’09.

The idea for the “Dive-in Movie” came from the directors of student life, who were looking for a group project as they worked to define their new roles at the University. They decided that they would try to provide “unique alternatives” to the eating clubs, according to Lesley Nye, director of student life at Forbes College.

“I think this is amazing — there are a lot of people who like swimming, but they don’t want to swim laps,” said Sarah Zaslow ’08, a Mathey College fellow. “It’s like summer right in the middle of thesis season.” 

Connor Cobean ’08 said he likes Jaws so much that he mentioned it in his Princeton application. As soon as he received the e-mail announcing the event, he said, he knew he had to come. Asked how many times he had seen the movie, he replied, “Probably at least 30 times.”

During a scene in which the body of a man is chopped in half by the shark and dragged into the ocean, turning the water red, the commotion in the pool among the movie-watchers stopped. Some students stared at the screen with their mouths open; others looked away. “That’s why we all had nightmares,” said Nye.

When the shark finally was killed by an exploding oxygen tank, scattered applause broke out. Turning off the projector, Mathey College’s director of student life, Matt Frawley, called out to the tired students at midnight: “Who’s ready for movie number two?

“We have Jaws 5!”