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May 20, 2024

To watch and watch for: Week of Nov. 12

By HELENA GIFFORD | November 12, 2023



This week’s picks include a highly-anticipated prequel film to the Hunger Games trilogy, a novel by Michael Cunningham taking place over only three days called Day, a rock album by country star Dolly Parton and a pair of operas at the Peabody Institute.

I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving. You’re looking forward to Thanksgiving. Even our professors are probably desperate for a break. With that in mind, if you want to get started on break early, we here in the Arts & Entertainment section have the best new releases and recommendations for you!

In film news, watch The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes to find out if the newest release in the Hunger Games franchise will be another brilliant piece of dystopian media or if the writers and creators of the huge series will become the same violence-glorifying powerful organization that they originally cautioned us against. 

Or, for all my people out there who want to see Thanksgiving taking on a stronger presence in film to combat the ever-encroaching onset of Christmas movie season, go out and watch Thanksgiving, a fun slasher movie about a pilgrim who kills people in a Thanksgiving-themed manner. 

In books, be sure to check out the most recent novel by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Cunningham, Day, as he weaves an experimental tale about a family’s breakdown before, during and after the COVID-19 lockdown. 

In the world of music, Dolly Parton is releasing a whopping 49th solo studio album on Friday, moving away from her country roots and experimenting with rock music in her new release, Rockstar

As for live events happening this week, be sure to check out the work of the ever-talented Peabody Institute musicians as they perform a pair of operas that center on families facing adversity. Or interact with other members of the LGBTQ community on Hopkins in a trip out to the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall to listen to a stunning classical piano performance.

Here’s what we’re watching and watching for this week! 

To Watch...

The Crown Season 6, created by Peter Morgan — Nov. 16

The first part of the final season of The Crown focuses on the tragic life of Princess Diana as she lives out the final days of her life, as well as continuing to follow the aging Queen Elizabeth II. 

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes, directed by Francis Lawrence — Nov. 17

In this prequel to the Hunger Games trilogy, a young Snow must reluctantly mentor tribute Lucy Gray from District 12, showing the hidden past of this future tyrannical President of Panem.

Thanksgiving, directed by Eli Roth — Nov. 17

This slasher film follows residents of Plymouth, Mass. as an axe-wielding murderer dressed as a pilgrim murders townspeople with implements found at the Thanksgiving table. 

To Read...

Day, by Michael Cunningham — Nov. 14

This story of a family falling apart in their cozy Brooklyn brownstone during lockdown and attempting to reconcile their new reality takes places over only three days: April 5, 2019, 2020 and 2021. 

The General and Julia, by Jon Clinch — Nov. 14

This historical fiction novel follows President Ulysses S. Grant as he reflects on his life while dying of cancer. He journeys back in time, reflecting on the Civil War, civil rights, the Gilded Age and more.

To Listen...

Rockstar, by Dolly Parton — Nov. 17

Country music icon Dolly Parton created an album where she covers classic rock songs as well as creating new rock music of her own. The album is full of an impressive array of featured artists, including Sting, Steven Tyler, Miley Cyrus, Brandi Carlile, Lizzo, Paul McCartney and more.

Live Events...

Johns Hopkins Pride (LGBTQ): Night at the Meyerhoff — Nov. 16, 7:30 p.m.

Accompany Johns Hopkins Pride Alumni Affinity and LGBTQ community members for a concert at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. Grammy Award winning pianist Emanuel Ax will be performing Brahms’ “Piano Concerto No. 1,” Beethoven’s “Fourth Symphony” and Unsuk Chin’s “subito con forza.” Tickets are $5 for current students and $35 per alum or guest. 

Riders to the Sea & Proving Up at Miriam A. Friedberg Concert Hall — Nov. 17 & 18, 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 19, 3 p.m.

Peabody Opera Theatre and the Peabody Symphony Orchestra will be performing two operas: Ralph Vaughn William’s “Riders to the Sea” and Missy Mazzoli’s “Proving Up.” Both of these stories focus on families striving against adversity, with one set in early 20th-century Ireland and the other set in the American Prairie of the 1860s. The performance is free and can be attended in person or virtually

Takács Quartet Concert at Shriver Hall — Nov. 19, 5:30 p.m.

The Grammy Award-winning Takács Quartet will be performing pieces by Haydn and Beethoven, as well as premiering Zimbabwean-Japanese composer Nokuthula Ngwenyama’s piece “flow” as part of the Shriver Hall Concert Series. Tickets are free for Hopkins students.

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