Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk treats the miracle of the 1940 evacuation with a refreshing solemnity. Nolan chooses progression of time rather than exchange of words as his medium of communication, but even that time is warped as the plotlines transition between land, sea, and air, each frame lasting the space of a week, a day, and an hour, respectively. Minimal, deliberately stilted dialogue leaves us looking … Continue reading Dunkirk

Death Declared, Life Questioned: Peter Gizzi Resurrects the Lyric Poem

By Hannah Niemeier Poet Peter Gizzi doesn’t like language any more than a geologist likes dirt; sometimes it gets in the way of his meaning. But what he finds beneath the dust of worn-out words is always precious: It was a language to eat the sky a language to say goodbye   standing with others standing in the dust.   The old language continues its … Continue reading Death Declared, Life Questioned: Peter Gizzi Resurrects the Lyric Poem

Music Review: Speakerboxxx | The Love Below

DISC 1 by Forester McClatchey The album begins with a swirl of static, disorienting. Screwed-down vocals say, “This is a test.” A test of sound, yes, but also a test for hip-hop, a test for newcomers (like Killer Mike), and fundamentally a test for ‘Kast: a split album, combining twice the creative energy with twice the risk of failure. After Stankonia dropped in 2000, it … Continue reading Music Review: Speakerboxxx | The Love Below

Movie Review: Cinderella

by Emily Lehman I watched the new Cinderella movie tentatively, waiting for vulgar humor, a sudden flamboyant display of CGI, or a swipe at traditional gender roles. Accustomed to the endless litany of remakes, sequels, and parodies, I expected that this movie would attempt to wink knowingly at the audience in one way or another, and waited for the jarring, if expected, blow. To my … Continue reading Movie Review: Cinderella

Movie Review: Dr. Strangelove

by Timothy Troutner When Stanley Kubrick released his classic film Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb in 1964, tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union troubled the world. The Cold War and the possibility of nuclear apocalypse dwelt constantly in public consciousness. America had spent nearly the past two decades building up its weapons, shoring up … Continue reading Movie Review: Dr. Strangelove

Music Review: The Oh Hellos, Dear Wormwood

by Emily Lehman Dear Wormwood, released on October 15, is the third album in the career of the band The Oh Hellos. The brother-and-sister duo (Tyler and Maggie Heath) skates the thin line between darkness and light in the carefully-crafted album, incorporating playful vocals, ethereal sweeps of synthetic sound, and the down-to-earth twang of mandolin and electric guitar into what, according to Tyler, is a … Continue reading Music Review: The Oh Hellos, Dear Wormwood

Movie Review: Inside Llewyn Davis

By Timothy Troutner In the opening scene of Inside Llewyn Davis, a 2013 film directed by the Coen brothers, the young musician Llewyn Davis (played by Oscar Isaac) takes the stage at the Gaslight Café in Manhattan and plays a stunning rendition of a folk song on acoustic guitar to modest applause. After his set, he walks into an alley behind the café and is … Continue reading Movie Review: Inside Llewyn Davis

Book Review: The Sportswriter by Richard Ford

By Sarah Schweizer I am going to make an unusual suggestion when it comes to books: read not for pleasure, but, while still enjoying the act of reading The Sportswriter by Richard Ford, do not let enjoyment carry the momentum. Instead become an attentive reader reading for empathy—go to the literature to learn about your neighbor. The best part of this learning process might be … Continue reading Book Review: The Sportswriter by Richard Ford

Music Review: Lana Del Rey, Honeymoon

By Stacey Egger Lana del Rey’s newest album, Honeymoon, has enough on its most surface level to merit at least one listen- which will almost inevitably lead to a second, and a third. Its depth and variety of tone and its vivid lyrics immerse the listener in what feels like a very tragic day on the beach. But the artistry of Honeymoon goes deeper than … Continue reading Music Review: Lana Del Rey, Honeymoon

Film Review: Calvary

By Timothy Troutner The 2014 film Calvary begins with a quotation (alas, of disputed authenticity) from St. Augustine. The text reads: “Do not despair; one of the thieves was saved. Do not presume; one of the thieves was damned.” With this first image, writer and director John Michael McDonagh evokes the presence of death and the fragility of faith that will dominate the rest of … Continue reading Film Review: Calvary