Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
December 5, 2022

Arts & Entertainment



COURTESY OF ZHIYUN WANG
Phunktions Hip Pop Dance Company performs onstage at the 14th Annual SLAM Benefit and Showcase: DJ Got Us Slammin’.

SLAM Showcase awes with uniquely charismatic performances

The 14th Annual SLAM Benefit and Showcase: DJ Got US Slammin’ hosted by the Hopkins SLAM Hip Hop Dance Group filled Shriver Hall with energy and zeal on Nov. 12. With the stage extravagantly decorated by iconic SLAM colored balloons, the showcase this year not only celebrated the diverse dance groups around the DMV area but SLAM’s 20th anniversary as well.


COURTESY OF MARY KATE MCCORMICK
This week’s picks include The Menu and Luca Guadagnino’s new film Bones and All.

To watch and watch for: Week of Nov. 13

For some welcome distractions from the busyness of midterms, look no further than diverse range of releases slated for this week! Long-awaited films The Menu and She Said are open this weekend at the same time as festival favorite Bones and All, while on Disney+ The Santa Clauses is out with its first episode.


COURTESY OF GAGE SKIDMORE / CC BY-SA 2.0
Henry Cavill plays a supporting role as Sherlock Holmes in Netflix’s Enola Holmes 2.

Enola Holmes 2: A sequel that is actually good?

As the weather begins to plummet and Thanksgiving Break approaches, the stress induced by the mere thought of impending midterms threatens to overwhelm me. Yes, I could study, but when I saw Enola Holmes 2 was released on Oct. 27, I had to carve two hours out of my schedule to watch it.



LBJ LIBRARY / PUBLIC DOMAIN MARK 1.0
Woody Harrelson stars in Ruben Östlund’s Palme d’Or winning film Triangle of Sadness.

Triangle of Sadness is a darkly humorous reconstruction of society

The premise of a group of people stranded on an island is an overdone trope in modern media. However, while Triangle of Sadness is not radically different in its approach to the content, it definitely succeeds in presenting it in a way few have done before. This is primarily because of its extensive focus on power dynamics before the characters get stranded. In fact, the ‘stranded on an island’ storyline only composes the last third of the film.


COURTESY OF MARY KATE MCCORMICK
This week’s pick’s include Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and Drake and 21 Savage’s new album Her Loss.

To watch and watch for: week of Nov. 6

There is plenty to explore in the arts this week! The incredibly successful Japanese anime One Piece Film: Red plays in American theaters, and Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas is this week’s revival film at the Senator Theatre. The much-awaited Black Panther: Wakanda Forever also opens in theaters this week! 


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Daniel Brühl is one of the stars of Netflix’s war drama All Quiet on the Western Front.

All Quiet on the Western Front portrays the sobering reality of war

104 years after the armistice of World War I, all veterans have long past and their memories are left to the history books. Having lived in peacetime my whole life, my concept of war is very abstract, so I expected the war movie, All Quiet on the Western Front, to be a fun action-packed watch. However, I quickly realized that this was a very grim film. All Quiet on the Western Front, released on Oct. 28, is a German anti-war film that brings the reality of war back into its horrific focus.


COURTESY OF VARSHNI VEERAVIGNESH
The Buttered Niblets gather onstage during the improv comedy show.

The Buttered Niblets delight with a creative Halloweekend show

It was 8 p.m. on the Saturday of Halloweekend, and the Arellano Theatre was buzzing with a bright, relaxed energy as the audience waited for the show to start. I saw a few familiar faces in the crowd, and I wasn’t surprised. The beauty of improv is that you never know what to expect each time, and the comic chaos that the Buttered Niblets (Nibs for short) create on stage every show keeps you coming back for more. 


GAGE SKIDMORE / CC BY-SA 2.0
Sofia Wylie stars in Netflix’s new film The School for Good and Evil.

The School for Good and Evil: good and evil, with a twist

To say I was excited for Netflix’s release of The School for Good and Evil on Oct. 19 is a huge understatement. It was beyond mere excitement. From a countdown starting months in advance to frantic replaying of the teaser trailer when it dropped, I was borderline obsessed.


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Alumbro delves into the resonance of Ocean Vuong’s work.

Reading Ocean Vuong: what you need to know

What can we do when language fails to bridge our thoughts with each other? As the son of an immigrant mother who was illiterate, this is an ongoing question Vietnamese American writer Ocean Vuong returns to in his poems, essays and novels. His work centers around communication, as if with each poem, he reimagines ways to streamline his emotions.


SUSANLENOX / PUBLIC DOMAIN MARK 1.0
The Rocky Horror Picture Show performance this Halloween was the University’s rendition of a cult classic.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show performance makes for an unforgettable Halloween

It turns out that I was wrong in thinking that the most exciting Mudd 26 could get was a Breaking Bad reference in the middle of an organic chemistry lecture. Behind those same squeaking doors, in front of that same projector and chalkboard, Hopkins Rocky Horror held a midnight performance of The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Oct. 29 that took the cake.


COURTESY OF MARY KATE MCCORMICK
This week’s releases include Next Exit, Smithereens and Little America: The Official Podcast.

To watch and watch for: week of Oct. 30

As the semester chugs along, don’t forget to take out some pockets of time to sit back, unwind and relax. Ushering us from October to November is a diverse assortment of releases, ranging from personal dramas to compelling horror.


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Francis Ford Coppola directed the 1979 Vietnam War epic Apocalypse Now.

In focus: Apocalypse Now (1979)

Anyone who doesn’t believe in miracles has clearly never seen Apocalypse Now. Directed by the legendary Francis Ford Coppola (director of The Godfather trilogy), Apocalypse Now is epic in all proportions and stands out even among the greatest of war films. There is no aspect of the film — from its production to the very fact that it was actually completed — that isn’t wildly fascinating.


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Kaitlyn Dever stars in Hulu’s inventive comedy Rosaline.

Rosaline: A comedic commentary on Romeo and Juliet

I have never understood the hype surrounding Shakespeare’s infamous play, Romeo and Juliet. Personally, I’ve always found it to be a long-winded, pompous display of iambic pentameter spouted by two-dimensional and horrendously stupid protagonists.


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Swift’s latest album Midnights presents the singer-songwriter’s most personal and frank experiences.

Taylor Swift's musical risk-taking pays off in Midnights

In what may arguably be one of the biggest album releases of the year, Taylor Swift’s 10th studio album Midnights was released on Oct. 21. The 13 tracks depict “sleepless nights” from across Swift’s life, drawing on her strong storytelling skills and sharp lyricism. 


COURTESY OF JOHN D’CRUZ
The Banshees of Inisherin, The Boys from Biloxi and Crybaby are a few of the picks to explore this fall break.

To watch and watch for: week of Oct. 16

Believe it or not, fall break is upon us — though only after we’ve finished three more days of classes. But then we’ll all finally have a moment to breathe, sleep and really sleep. Thankfully it’s an exciting week for releases across the board, especially with a much-anticipated album from a certain singer-songwriter who needs no introduction.


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Michael Giacchino, a famed American composer, makes his directorial debut with Werewolf by Night.

Marvel’s Werewolf by Night is a frightfully fun old-school monster tale

Marvel Studios’ Werewolf by Night is a television special that was released on Disney+ on Oct. 7, and is a single-episode story about what happens when a group of monster hunters are gathered together to compete for the ownership of the magical “Bloodstone” after its previous owner passes away. However, one of the monster hunters is not who they say they are.


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Along with Bette Midler and Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy reprises her role as one of the Sanderson Sisters in Hocus Pocus 2.

Hocus Pocus 2: A nostalgic mess

With Halloween just a few weeks away, if you’re like me, you’re likely on the lookout for a festive, spooky film to snuggle up and watch over a bowl of candy corn. Luckily, this October has been filled with new horror films, from Halloween Ends, the last in the Halloween trilogy, to Prey for the Devil coming out on Oct. 28. However, as someone who enjoys a milder scare, I was beyond ecstatic when I heard Disney+ was releasing a sequel to the 1993 cult classic Hocus Pocus on Sept. 30.


COURTESY OF JINGYAN ZHANG
This year's Hoptoberfest concert was headlined by Desiigner, a rapper.

Rapper Desiigner electrifies crowd at Hoptoberfest

The week-long festivities of Hoptoberfest 2022 concluded on Oct. 8, with an exhilarating performance from Brooklyn-born rapper Desiigner at Shriver Hall. Known by his stage name Desiigner, Sidney Royel Selby III is perhaps best known amongst the Gen Z undergraduate student body for his hit debut single “Panda,” which premiered in December 2015.


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