Jack Hobbs’17 reflects on some of the top picks to watch this weekend.
Movies I’ve Seen:
A Movie I’ve Seen: The Edge of Seventeen
If you’re looking for a movie with a cohesive plot, The Edge of Seventeen probably isn’t for you. That doesn’t, however, mean that it’s a bad movie. Hailee Steinfeld, the iconic Haiz, shines in her triumphant return to the silver screen (following her rather annoying turn in Pitch Perfect 2) as she navigates her very own teen coming-of-age film. Haiz plays the pretentiously named Nadine, whose already pathetic life is turned upside down when her apparently superior elder brother and her best (only) friend fall for one another. Hijinks ensue as Steinfeld’s Nadine enters a self-destructive downward spiral, attempting to find herself as well as to achieve any sort of normalcy as a maladjusted high school student. The Edge of Seventeen offers plenty of laughs, lots of secondhand embarrassment, and some important life lessons. It’s definitely worth a watch.
A Movie I’d Like to See: Spirited Away *Editor’s Pick*
Everybody’s favorite Hayao Miyazaki is returning to theaters this weekend in a (personally) exciting re-release for its fifteenth anniversary, more than ten years after it originally hit the silver screen in America. If you’d like to revisit the endearingly odd world of Spirited Away’s Bathhouse as much as I do, find tickets near you!
A Movie I’ve Seen: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
This movie is for all the people who, like me, grew up on Harry Potter. Sitting in the theater as the theme comes through the speakers will definitely bring you more than a little nostalgia for the golden days of midnight premieres and the launch of Pottermore. Gilded Age New York City was a refreshing choice of setting for the franchise, which had exhausted late 90’s Britain over the course of its first eight films. While it may feel like a departure from the themes of friendship and love of Rowling’s original septology, Fantastic Beasts still offers fun and a bit of the magic that we’ve all been missing since 2011. The casting department clearly worked some magic of their own, signing Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne, indie film darling Katherine Waterston, Selma’s Carmen Ejogo, and international celebrity (and alleged disaster) Johnny Depp. Check this movie out if you don’t mind the blockbuster formula and love fantasy.
A Movie I’d Like to See: Allied
This is the movie that, rumor has it, killed Brangelina. While Marion Cotillard and Brad Pitt most likely did not have an affair on set, the chilling love story of their characters serves as the centerpiece for this World War II spy thriller. While reviews have been lukewarm, I think that Allied will most likely be worth the watch with plenty of drama, fight sequences, and intrigue.
A Movie I’ve Seen: Arrival
It seems like Amy Adams, each and every year, comes out with at least one movie that qualifies her for an Oscar. Arrival is no exception. What could have been another mindless science fiction blockbuster in the vein of the Independence Day reboot or Alien vs. Predator, turned out to be an incredibly poignant discussion of humanity’s developing global society and the fallibility of mankind’s construction of time. Arrival avoids the tendency of modern science fiction movies to create aliens that are only dissimilar to humans in their skin color (I’m looking at you, Guardians of the Galaxy) and whose native tongues are apparently in the Romantic Latin tradition by building its imagined species’ own dialect and unique form of writing (Arrival’s aliens write their words in a circle rather than from linearly from left to write). Amy Adams plays a linguistics expert who learns these aliens’ language and has a pivotal role in the de-escalation of the world’s reaction to the arrival of life from beyond Earth. Arrival will make you think deeply about mankind’s capacity to work together and communicate as well as the constraints of our own conception of time.
Movies I’d Like to See: Jackie
Natalie Portman’s performance of the beloved Jackie Onassis (then Kennedy) in this 2016 biopic has amassed so much buzz that she’s predicted to be nominated for her second Oscar before Jackie has even premiered. Jackie follows First Lady Jackie Kennedy in the days leading up to and directly following the assassination of her husband, John F. Kennedy, as she deals with their relationship (and, later, lack thereof) and his murder. However, if you’re familiar with the Kennedy’s iconic accent and find it annoying (as many do) you may want to steer clear, as it is reported that Portman does an incredible replication.