Watchmen and Summer of Soul
The Death and
Life of Marsha
Go to Jen’s pick
If you're not talking about Bruno, you clearly haven’t had a conversation with my three-year-old daughter in the past few weeks.
Encanto is the most delightful kids’ movie I’ve seen possibly ever but definitely since the pandemic started and brought with it a lot of quality family time. This was never more true than over the holidays, when my whole family (two vaccinated adults and one unvaccinated toddler) had symptomatic COVID. We’re fine! Not at all thanks to the horrifyingly confusing CDC guidance, but because #science and #vaccines and dumb luck!
In the midst of that chaos, we all watched Encanto together on Christmas Day. Then we watched it twice on December 26th. Then about 15 more times before Betty White departed and took 2021 down with her.
Even if you’re not a parent, it's likely you’ll ~really dig~ the movie’s catchy original songs, written by none other than the Pulitzer-winning composer of Hamilton. And maybe you, too, will pick out the inimitable voice of John Leguizamo—aka Luigi from the 1993 classic Super Mario Brothers—as the unmentionable Bruno.
Go to Brittany’s pick
Go to Erik’s pick
“Hey, you should watch this great series Station Eleven. It’s about a pandemic!” That's admittedly a tough sell this winter as Omicron lingers and we await some kind of reprieve from our pandemic Groundhog Day. But I will add to my pitch: It’s about finding hope through connections and love—and who doesn’t need that right now?
Last year I recommended the book this series is based on, and I’m pleased to report that the ten-part series does the novel justice. A few characters get expanded storylines, and some of the story arcs that took place in New York are instead set in Chicago (as if I needed another reason to relate to the story). No spoilers, but I watched the finale through happy tears. I hope you do too.
Judas and the Black Messiah
and I May
Let me start by saying, yes, we’re playing Wordle. But because that only takes a few minutes a day—unless, like many of us, you’ve also downloaded bootleg versions because you just can’t get enough—we’re also reading and watching a whole host of things, from techy YouTube channels to Disney’s latest and greatest. And scroll to the bottom to see what we’ll be watching (or rewatching) this month in honor of
Black History Month.
What we’re watching this Black History Month
While working from home, I usually like to keep podcasts or YouTube videos airing in the background to avoid working in silence; I also find this aids my productivity. My favorite YouTube channel is Linus Tech Tips. I’ve always loved anything related to consumer electronics and computer hardware, and this channel is packed with tutorials and basic explanations of the latest technology, with episodes on topics ranging from computer component and hardware setup to technologically cognizant home-improvement advice. I recommend this channel to anyone curious about the world of contemporary tech.
Go to Karen’s pick
Disclaimer: I’m a sucker for any book written from a child’s point of view. Fight Night, written by Miriam Toews, is an endearing, poignant, and brilliantly written novel told from the perspective of nine-year-old Swiv. Although the narrative takes the form of a letter from Swiv to her absent father, it consists almost entirely of fast-paced dialogue, with countless zingers that will shock you, make you laugh out loud, or kick you in
Swiv lives in Toronto with her mother, Mooshie, a working actor who’s pregnant with a baby they all inexplicably call Gord, and her grandma, Elvira, an irrepressible iconoclast to the last. No one seems terribly concerned that Swiv was expelled from school for fighting, as she and Elvira spend their days watching over each other in equal measure. About two-thirds of the way through the book, the action shifts when Swiv and Elvira head to Fresno, California. Elvira leads Swiv through a series of rollicking misadventures and gives Swiv new perspectives on their family and its history. Ultimately, this novel is about the “fight” that defines three generations of women who love, endure, and live life on their own terms.