The Get Down
Following closely after “Stranger Things”, “The Get Down” may have fallen in the shadow of Netflix’s ode to the 80s. Watch the history of DJing and rap unfold before your eyes in a turbulent 1970s South Bronx through Shaolin Fantastic and the Furious Four, otherwise known as the “Get Down Brothers”. Chance the Rapper might have three Grammy awards, but rap wouldn’t be what it is today without creators like Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five.
The allure of “Sense8” lies in how relatable it is. Eight people, born in the exact same moment, share a mental link. The plot follows an Icelandic DJ, a Chicago cop, a Chinese executive, a trans hacker, an African bus driver, an Indian pharmacist, a gay Mexican film star, and a German criminal. They appear to each other, lending advice and abilities in moments of conflict, of which there are many. In a world so fractured, seeing the unity and love between a group so diverse is amazing. This show is one of the best examples of magical realism that I’ve seen in a long time; it toes the line between reality and the otherworldly.
Rami Malek’s portrayal of main character “Elliot” oscillates between a cerebral genius hacker and a mentally ill recluse whose world is constantly crumbling around him. His sense of morality leads him outside the bounds of the law and into a much larger, bloodier arena. Watching the show results in widened eyes, hair on end, and an ever-present weight resting in the pit of your stomach. Every episode manages to serve a season finale-esque twist without dulling the shock of the actual season finale.
The near future is wildly unknown, especially due to the influx of recent technology. With these new technologies comes many different possibilities of what the future may look like and what realities it might hold. With a new plot every episode, “Black Mirror” provides a speculative and critical look into the future of the human race.
“Luke Cage” is not only another one of Netflix’s knockout Marvel series; the character himself both defies and rises above the current state of America’s race relations. Dark hoodie tucked over his head, this hero stands for police brutality victims like Michael Brown and Tamir Rice. As the show’s executive producer, Cheo Choker, said, “the world is ready for a bulletproof black man”.
“Dope”. As 90s slang, the word means “fly” or “cool”. As street slang, it means “an illegal drug taken for recreational purposes”. This movie’s action swirls around both meanings. Modern-day geeks obsessed with 90s culture fall into a bit of dope and have to get rid of it while playing in their band (highly recommend looking up “Awreeoh”), trying to get out of the hood and into college, and avoiding arrest. Don’t watch if you can’t handle an unabashed 90s aesthetic, a soundtrack that includes the musical stylings of artists like A Tribe Called Quest and Public Enemy, and sharp box cuts.
There is not a better word for Amélie than “quirky”. Set in Paris in the early 2000’s, the movie follows Amélie Poulin as she goes about her daily adventures and strange routines. Amélie is simply trying to help the world become a better place in the small ways she knows how. Not only is the story line charming, the cinematography by Bruno Delbonnel and performance of Amélie by Audrey Tautou brings the film a sense of magic, making it a cult classic.
Let It Be
Short films are double-edged swords. The window for entertainment is so small that a director has to enrapture their audience within a matter of moments without neglecting to wrap the plot line up. Bertie Gilbert has achieved that with his waifish, naive portrayal of Death as she happens across a couple who teaches her about what it is to be alive.
“Beginners” is a mirror of human life, with tales of romance, humor, big decisions, and adventure. Starring Mélanie Laurent, Christopher Plummer, and Ewan McGregor, this tale provides a piece for everyone: romantics, artists, dog lovers, and travelers alike. “Beginners” will have you crying, laughing, and aching for the characters as they portray a romanticized view of the hard questions of life.
Dynamic mood lighting, acting, and the concept in and of itself knock it out of the park. Like so many heroes, Tom, a lower-class British teenager, wasn’t born with his “powers”. Those, the ability to connect with and control technology, came with the fragments of phone blown into his brain by a bullet. The real appeal lies in the idea that the next moment could be the one that changes your life forever- that renders you extraordinary.
Khalid: “American Teen” album
Jon Bellion: “Human Condition” album
Solange: “A Seat at the Table” album
Blood Orange: “Cupid Deluxe” album
Papooz: “Green Juice” Album
Glass Animals: “Gooey”, “Flip”, “Poplar St.”, “The Other Side of Paradise”
Watsky: “Moral of the Story”
SonReal: “Everywhere We Go”
La Femme: “Où va le monde”
Paul Simon: “Stranger”
Raury: Indigo Child- EP
Illustrations by Alysse Stephens