Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
December 9, 2022

Arts & Entertainment



GAGE SKIDMORE / CC BY-SA 2.0
The Fabelmans is Steven Spielberg’s new semi-autobiographical movie.

Thank you, Mr. Spielberg

In the opening scene of Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans, a young Sammy Fabelman watches his first film — The Greatest Show on Earth — in 1952. As he watches a train crash on the huge screen, his world is lopsided by the grandeur and magic of cinema. While watching The Fabelmans, I felt the same thrill as Sammy, albeit my emotions were due to the beauty of a simple and incredibly personal story that Spielberg brings to the film.



COURTESY OF MARY KATE MCCORMICK
Picks this week include George & Tammy, The Light Pirate and Unity.

To watch and watch for: Week of Dec. 4

Welcome to December! This time of year boasts an excellent line-up in the art world, with holiday-themed releases close on the horizon. The last week of classes is finally upon us, so be sure to take this time to curl up with a little something before final exams hit.



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Guevara reviews Netflix’s Falling for Christmas, starring Lindsay Lohan.

Falling for Christmas: an unsatisfying show of shallow sweetness

I really wanted to like Falling for Christmas, Netflix’s latest romantic comedy starring Lindsay Lohan. As a fan of Lohan’s nostalgic Mean Girls and Freaky Friday, I was looking forward to seeing her light up the screen in another major film. Since its release on Nov. 10, the film has consistently been featured in Netflix’s top 10 list despite its lackluster reviews from critics.


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! 


EL HORMIGUERO / CC BY-NC 2.0
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.


WIKIMEDIA COMMONS / CC BY-SA 2.0
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.


GABBOT / CC BY-SA 2.0
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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