Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
May 23, 2024

To watch and watch for: Week of April 15

By HELENA GIFFORD | April 17, 2024



This week’s picks include Taylor Swift’s highly anticipated new album The Tortured Poets Department, a memoir about a woman’s relationship with her dead mother and a literary festival at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.

As the weather starts to get warmer, the end of the semester is finally in sight! 

This week, there’s a wide range of arts and entertainment to enjoy — from the highly anticipated new Taylor Swift album to a movie about a family of Sasquatches living in the woods.

For movies, be sure to check out Sasquatch Sunset, which is guaranteed to be a viewing experience like no other. However, if you want something a bit more conventional, check out horror movie Abigail or World War II action movie The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare.

In books, it is a glowing week for memoirs. If you want to cry, read Genevieve Kingston’s memoir about how the letters and gifts left to her by her late mother changed her life. Or, read novelist Salman Rushdie’s account of the near-fatal assassination attempt that was all over the news in 2022.

The Swifties are definitely well fed this year. After the Eras Tour documentary and release of 1989 (Taylor’s Version), Swift is putting out even more new music with her upcoming 11th studio album.

For live events, if you’re interested in social justice and the craft of writing, definitely check out the CityLit Festival at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall on Saturday. Or, take a listen to the wonderful Concerto Competition winners at the Hopkins Symphony Orchestra’s concert.

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

To watch...

The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare, directed by Guy Ritchie — April 19

This action-comedy film follows a top-secret fighting unit in World War II, which uses “ungentlemanly” methods of fighting against the Nazi forces. This movie is loosely based on the first special forces group formed in the U.K.

Abigail, directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett —  April 19

In this retelling of the 1936 horror film Dracula’s Daughter, a group of kidnappers is hired to capture a young girl. However, when they find her, they realize that she’s more than she initially appears to be.

Sasquatch Sunset, directed by David and Nathan Zellner — April 19

This live-action film follows a family of Sasquatches living in the woods. One of the Sasquatches is played by Jesse Eisenberg. And yes, it is exactly as weird as it sounds.

To read...

Did I Ever Tell You?: A Memoir, by Genevieve Kingston — April 16

When a mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer, she spent the next seven years creating a stockpile of letters and gifts for her two young children when she died. Now in her 30s, her daughter tells the moving story of the relationship she was able to have with her mother, as she guides her through life and celebrates milestones.

Knife: Meditations After an Attempted Murder, by Salman Rushdie — April 16

Author Salman Rushdie reflects on the widely publicized near-death experience he had in August 2022, when he was stabbed multiple times in an attempted assassination. 

The One That Got Away with Murder, by Trish Lundy — April 16

Lauren O’Brian is new to town when she gets into a relationship with a privileged boy at her school. However, as she gets deeper into the relationship, things become complicated when she finds out that the townspeople all suspect him of murdering his last girlfriend.

To listen...

The Tortured Poets Department, by Taylor Swift — April 19

Swifties, rejoice. You are being fed once more with this new album from Taylor Swift, which she considers to be her most cathartic project so far. It will be 16 tracks long with one bonus track and include two tracks featuring Post Malone and Florence + the Machine.

Dark Matter, by Pearl Jam — April 19

Rock band Pearl Jam was one of the earliest and most popular grunge bands to emerge from Seattle in the early ‘90s, and they’re still going strong with the release of their 12th studio album this Friday. It will feature 11 tracks, including “Scared of Fear,” “Upper Hand” and “Setting Sun.”

Live events...

21st Annual CityLit Festival: Dismantling the Culture of Silence at Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall — April 20 

CityLit is an annual literary festival taking place in Baltimore, consisting of panels, talks, one-on-one critique sessions and information on publishing. This year’s theme is “Dismantling the Culture of Silence” and will include talks such as “Creating Living Archives: On Contemporary Trans Poetics” and “THE ‘STATE’ OF BALTIMORE: When a Means to Information is Threatened.” Admission for most events is free.

Hopkins Symphony Orchestra: Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra in Shriver Hall — April 20 at 7:30 p.m.

Saturday’s performance by the Hopkins Symphony Orchestra will feature the winners of the Concerto Competition, percussionist Jarett Ren and pianist Eric Lian. The program includes the second movement of Emmanuel Séjourné’s “Concerto for Marimba and Strings,” the first movement of Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “Piano Concerto No. 1” and Béla Bartók’s “Concerto for Orchestra.” Tickets are free for students. 

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