Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
August 1, 2021

Arts & Entertainment




GAGE SKIDMORE/CC BY-SA 2.0
Actors Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan play the roles of Falcon and the Winter Soldier, respectively. 

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier finishes strong, but not without flaws

A month ago, I wrote a review of the first episode of Disney+’s new premier Marvel Cinematic Universe intellectual property, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. In it, I expressed disappointment with the way that the series opened. I believed that the show might improve as it went along, but I argued that, in the first episode, the show just wasn’t all that good.


COURTESY OF SARAH JUNG
Giveon performed a series of songs during the University’s 2021 Spring Fair Concert.

Hunny and Giveon enrich virtual Spring Fair Concert experience

With an introduction of the band Hunny by the Hopkins Student Organization for Programming, the awaited Spring Fair Concert began. Hunny was staged in front of a fish-eye camera, which gave a circular perception that could have been achieved in an in-person concert. 


COURTESY OF JEANIE FUNG, AMARA GAMMON AND KEIDAI LEE
The animation recently won in the Mixed Media category of the Diversify Our Narrative Art Collective Competition. 

Students create animation project The Color of My Voice to combat racism

The Color of My Voice is an animated project meant to elevate the voices of those who have experienced racism and discrimination. Originally created by junior Keidai Lee, The Color of My Voice is now a collaborative project between Hopkins students and those at surrounding universities. With the goal of “illustrating stories about people facing and overcoming racial discrimination,” Lee and his team have been working on the project for almost a year. 



COURTESY OF SARAH JUNG
Jennifer Koh performs her project Alone Together and two pieces written by J.S. Bach.

Violinist Jennifer Koh portrays the pandemic through performance

Violinist Jennifer Koh gave a powerful performance for the Shriver Hall Concert Series on April 11. Koh performed selections from Alone Together, a project she started when the pandemic began. Her rendition of Ellen Reid’s “Brick Red Mood” was unusual because of its resemblance to an assembly of discordant notes that sounded like someone screaming. This piece opened my eyes to a form of classical music I had never encountered prior. 


COURTESY OF RISHABH KUMAR
Guy Nolet and Tom Lyle appeared in “Sugar,” which was the second of three short films that Studio North premiered this past week.

Studio North screens short films about love, stand-up and growing up

One of the parts of those glorious pre-pandemic days that I miss the most is going to the movies. There’s nothing like grabbing a bucket of popcorn, sitting down in a dark hall and watching some great art (or, you know, some pretty cool superheroes). And while there isn’t anything like the big screen, the Studio North screening on April 13 of short films made by Hopkins students was a truly lovely night, powered by students’ passion and creativity. 


RON COGSWELL/CC BY 2.0
The workplace sitcom Superstore comes to a memorable end after six seasons.

NBC’s Superstore gives retail workers their flowers

Yet another workplace sitcom has come and gone: After a sixth season that insinuated candid conversation about the past year, NBC’s Superstore closed up shop on March 25 with an hour-long, two-part finale. The episode brought back its dynamic star, America Ferrera, as the hardworking pragmatist Amy, who departed from the show after season five.


TOM SIMPSON/CC BY-NC 2.0
Pictured is an image from the 1962 film King Kong vs. Godzilla.

Godzilla vs. Kong is a winning CGI spectacle — just don’t think about it too much

If you like massive CGI fights, a touch of sci-fi and almost non-stop action, then you’ve come to the right place. And you might not be alone, either. In the first five days of the theatrical release of the hugely-anticipated blockbuster Godzilla vs. Kong, its box office hit a record-setting $48.5 million, making it the biggest opening for a film since the start of the pandemic.


COURTESY OF SARAH JUNG
The Benito Gonzalez Trio played "Sama Layuca" at Keystone Korner Baltimore. 

Benito Gonzalez Trio celebrates McCoy Tyner's music

The Benito Gonzalez Trio gave a live-streamed jazz performance at Keystone Korner Baltimore on April 3 to celebrate McCoy Tyner. The trio included pianist Benito Gonzalez, bassist Essiet Okon Essiet and drummer Billy Hart. 


COURTESY OF JAE CHOI
Clint McCallum's background during his performance at The Red Room in Your Room concert.

The Red Room in Your Room series spotlights Baltimore artists

The High Zero Foundation, a Baltimore-based organization dedicated to promoting improvised and experimental music, held an online concert on March 25. The foundation hosted the event over the livestreaming service Twitch as part of its ongoing The Red Room in Your Room series. Despite the collapsing of geographic constraints afforded by online events, the series has continued to foreground the work of Baltimore-based artists, and the March 25 concert was no exception. 


GAGE SKIDMORE/CC BY-SA 2.0
Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan, who play the titular stars of Marvel's The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

Marvel’s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is what you’d expect, in all the wrong ways

I never had particularly high hopes for Marvel’s The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, the new series which debuted its first episode on Disney+ just this week. Every trailer, as far as I could tell, looked so... standard. I have seen a lifetime’s worth of jump-cut-filled action sequences and computer-generated explosions. For a long time, I loved them. Now, to be honest, I find them kind of boring. They just don’t inspire awe and fear in me the way that they once did.





RUBEN ORTEGA/CC BY-SA 4.0
Patrick Ness is the author of the book that Chaos Walking is based on.

Chaos Walking is weighed down by missteps and predictability

One of the first science fiction movies of the year, Chaos Walking (in theaters now) appears to show great promise. With its slick premise, enrapturing action and striking title, it has every look of a sci-fi fan’s dream come true. To top it off, its star-studded cast includes the likes of Tom Holland, Daisy Ridley and Mads Mikkelsen, and behind the camera is director Doug Liman, responsible for the critically acclaimed Edge of Tomorrow.


PEABODY AWARDS/CC-BY-2.0
Amy Poehler directed and starred in the movie Moxie.

Netflix’s Moxie will make you cry, just give it some time

A little less than halfway through Netflix’s new movie Moxie, I texted my girlfriend, “This movie is making me feel conflicted. I can’t tell if it’s good or not.” And I couldn’t: The first half of this film oscillates greatly in quality. It takes a while to get going, and even once the main plot really starts to take centerstage, the stakes of the movie are still tremendously unclear. There are moments of brilliance sprinkled throughout the first half of the movie — it certainly wasn’t bad — but I was far from convinced.


GAGE SKIDMORE/CC BY-SA 3.0
Paul Bettany plays both versions of the character Vision in WandaVision.

WandaVision redefines the superhero genre

Following the incredible commercial success of Avengers: Endgame, I, like many others, wondered how Marvel would ever surpass the film’s and its predecessors’ sheer scope and magnitude. Was it something that they would even be able to pull off? Was it even worth attempting to do so? WandaVision is a curious answer to these questions. 


COSMOPOLITAN U.K./CC-BY-3.0
Awkwafina, who plays the dragon Sisu, is one of the best parts of the film.

Raya and the Last Dragon is both beautiful and flawed

After a series of trailers, Raya and the Last Dragon finally premiered on March 5. The movie begins with an elaborate two-dimensional animation of Kumandra, a once-united land that now appears unrecognizable to the current inhabitants, who are divided into different territories.


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