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Entertainment

Volume 83 (Spring 2012)

Daughtry’s “Spell” Comes to the MAC

entertainment-chris-daughtry-1Over 3,200 people packed the MAC to see the former “American Idol” star turned rocker, Chris Daughtry, made his way to campus last Friday as part of his self-titled band’s 2012 Break the Spell tour. There were 3,283 tickets sold for the event.

Mary Ann Nagy, Vice President of Students and Community Services, said “This was a great concert for us to get and a great evening for the University and our concert promoter partner. Everyone seemed to have a good time and we look forward to having bands like this in the future. It’s great to be able to bring in well-known artists.”

Daughtry played 19 songs that evening, which mostly consisted of his biggest hits and several of his new songs.

The band kicked off the show with one of their newest singles off Break the Spell titled “Renegade.” Sophomore student Nicolle Rodriguez felt this was a great way to start the show.

“One of my favorite parts was when he performed ‘Renegade’ and the curtain dropped revealing his band. The song got the whole crowd excited and pumped up for his show,” said Rodriguez.

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Adam Pascal & Anthony Rapp Rent Out Pollak

entertainment-adam-pascal-and-anthony-rapAdam Pascal and Anthony Rapp, better known as Roger and Mark from the Broadway musical and film Rent, performed at Pollak Theatre this past Saturday.

Pascal is currently starring in the Broadway musical Memphis while Rapp is on tour with his one-man autobiographical show Without You, based on his memoir about being on Broadway as well as his family life.

Pascal entered with a medley of Jeff Buckley’s “Lover, You Should’ve Come Over” and “Johanna” from Sweeny Todd. The next song, “Solsbury Hill” by Peter Gabriel, was more upbeat. The audience cheered when Rapp came on stage to join Pascal as a duet.

It was slightly disappointing when Rapp left the stage afterward. It was almost a tease to hear the two singers perform together and then separate. After all, their collaborative selections are what most of the audience came for, but my attention was captured once again when Pascal began his set.

Pascal introduced a song called “Turn the Lights On” from his new record, Blinding Light, which he recorded with his pianist and musical director Larry Edoff. Pascal then graciously handed the stage over to him for a song Edoff wrote titled “Love Will Always Come Back.” Toward the end of the song, Pascal presented strong vocals for a more intense musical impact.

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Audiences Take a Chance with The Lucky One

entertainment-the-lucky-oneA lonely, reserved Marine, a single, bullied mother and a little boy who never realizes his true potential tug at your heartstrings in the latest chick flick and Nicholas Sparks’ adaptation, The Lucky One. The film is a promising romance film that includes performances from Zac Efron, Blythe Danner and relavtive newcomer, Taylor Schilling. To Sparks fans, this is yet another cinematic version for one of his novels that you don’t want to miss.

Directed by Scott Hicks, The Lucky One is about Logan Thibault (Zack Efron), a soldier dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder following a tour of duty overseas. The day after a night-raid, he finds a photo of a woman moments before an explosion goes off inches away from where he was standing. He and his war buddies believe the woman in the photo (played by Schilling) is his guardian angel. After unsuccessfully trying to settle back into society months later, Logan embarks on a cross-country trip to find his lucky charm.

Upon arriving in a small Louisiana town, Logan discovers the woman in the photo is Beth Green, who runs a dog kennel with her grandmother, Ellie (Danner). Logan has trouble explaining why he came to see her, and instead takes a job working at Green’s kennel to be close to Beth. As Logan spends more time around Beth, he learns she’s a young, divorced mother with a son Ben and has a strained relationship with her ex-husband Keith (Jay R. Ferguson), head police officer in the same town. Meanwhile, Ben’s caught between his bickering, divorced parents and tends to get hurt the most; he’s often bullied at school and is looked down upon by his father for wanting to play violin, chess and magic tricks instead of being a Little League jock.

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Cut! That's a Wrap Working for The Outlook

entertainment-matts-goodbye“So begins the first day of the rest of my life.” Growing up, I’ve heard this phrase many times but never understood it. As I prepare to graduate, I finally grasp what this really means as one part of my life ends and the next begins. With this final submission, my time on The Outlook concludes and as I lay out my last pages, I can’t help but recollect on how I got here.

After I transferred from Brookdale Community College, I began writing for The Outlook with my movie reviews, starting with the dark animated film 9. I continued to write weekly reviews, pursuing my passion for both cinema and writing. This was fun as I not only watched movies but felt like a real critic. As a commuter student, writing these reviews helped me become an active member of the campus community instead of just going to and from classes. I feel proud to say that throughout my time on The Outlook I wrote 48 reviews for films I loved like Source Code and those I didn’t such as Clash of the Titans (3-D). When I became Outlook Film Critic, I felt like I had finally made my mark on the paper.

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Graphic Design Majors Showcase Bold Works at Senior Art Exhibit

entertainment-graphic-design-exhibit-2The Art and Design Department hosted its second Senior Art Ex­hibit opening reception last Friday night at the Pollak Gallery and Ro­tary Ice House Gallery as gradu­ating students showcased their graphic design pieces.

Students, professors, family members and friends came to cel­ebrate with the artists while ad­miring their artwork. The gallery walls were decorated with logo and poster designs, including made up movie posters, digitally created creatures and environments and various products with artist de­signed packaging and labels. Each artist also shared a business card and resume for the attendees’ fu­ture needs in graphic design.

“Dead On,” a Grateful Dead tribute band, was playing at Pollak Theatre the same evening, allow­ing audience members a chance to view the art as they were pick­ing up tickets from the box office. Some Deadheads walked around the gallery as they waited for the show to start, pointing at pieces that caught their eye.

The poster designs showcased ranged from humorous and playful to serious and political, like graphic designer Rick Cappetta’s 2010 Global Understanding Con­vention poster which was recog­nized at that year’s award cere­mony. Jon Beebe offered a funny poster on the “Beginner’s Guide to Becoming a Bro” that showed a “Bro” equipped with flip-flops, a pink polo and body spray (ap­ply thick and often), along with knowledge of drinking games. Beebe also displayed a three piece photo collage, the final portrait showing various Occupy Movement protestors holding signs in a united image.

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Zombies Aren’t the Only Lifeless Things in Operation Raccoon City

The only things evil here are Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City and Capcom for putting such a broken and un­finished game on the market. The more I played this game, the more I asked myself, “How could Capcom let such a game that tarnishes one of their flag­ship series loose on the streets?”

Indeed, like the T-virus, this game will make you a blood­thirsty monster. The only differ­ence between the game and the T-virus is the virus will make you a zombie. Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City will make you shout profanities at your loved ones and land you in therapy.

As soon as I booted up the game, I noticed the company that developed it wasn’t Cap­com. Rather, they handed it over to Slant Six Games, a company I’ve never heard of because they only made four other video games. Let me tell you, it really, really shows.

Where do I even start in dis­secting this game? How about the plot? It had potential, but like everything else, it fell apart with a lack of a narrative and memorable characters.

The player takes control of an Umbrella Corporation wet works group known as the Wolf­pack. The Wolfpack’s job is to dive into Raccoon City in the middle of the T-virus epidemic and erase all evidence linking Umbrella to the outbreak. This could range from documents that need to be burned to survivors targeted for elimina­tion.

A cool feature is that several characters from Resident Evil 2 and 3 appear in story mode, like HUNK (you know, the guy in the gas mask. He’s basically responsible for the Raccoon City outbreak). It is cool to see them again, even if only for a few minutes. Ultimately though, what they do is remind players they could be playing much better games that came out ages ago like Resident Evil 2.

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On Screen In Person’s Final Film Was a BLAST!

entertainment-blastBLAST!, the final installment of this year’s On Screen In Per­son program, was screened on Monday, April 9 in Wilson Audi­torium. On Screen, In Person is a traveling film series along the East Coast that screens films and allows the audience to engage the director in Q&A sessions afterwards.

Used here, BLAST is an acro­nym that means Balloon-borne Large Aperture Submillimeter Telescope. The film focused on a team of scientists that developed the device, showing the emotional strain and all-too-real problems with scientific innovation.

The screening was hosted by Andrew Demirjian, specialist pro­fessor of communication. He felt such films, which showcase the science as well as the scientist, are great in general, but was quite im­pressed by director Paul Devlin. “I think the director did a great job at introducing detail, holding interest and creating tension. As a young filmmaker, it is so im­portant to learn to do that,” said Demirjian. He is excited about showing the film to his documen­tary film class.

BLAST! focused on Devlin’s as­trophysicist brother, Doctor Mark Devlin, who, with a team of gradu­ate students, set out to photograph the formation of new stars and galaxies throughout the universe. While most scientific documenta­ries would spend the majority of time describing the inspiration and mechanics behind the project, the director wanted a film that show­cased the hu­manity of those involved.

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Visit The Cabin in the Woods for Your Horror Movie Needs

entertainment-cabin-in-the-woodsOn the surface, The Cabin in the Woods might look like every horror movie about teens being pursued by a psychopath or super­natural forces, but underneath, it’s one of the wittier, more creative, and most unique horror films to come out in a while. Writers Joss Whedon (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer”) and Drew Goddard (Clo­verfield) do a fantastic job of fol­lowing the blueprints of similar pictures like Evil Dead a nd t wist­ing them around to develop their own design.

For instance, the film answers specific questions that viewers might have had with horror films, like why characters decide to have sex when there’s something sinister on the loose. Maybe you’ve won­dered why groups split up when they should stay together or why the virgin is the lone survivor? All are answered. However, this isn’t the sole way the filmmakers work with- and around- the genre to cre­ate a very smart horror film.

The Cabin the Woods features five friends: studious Dana (Kris­ten Connolly), stoner Marty (Fran Kranz), new guy Holden (Jesse Williams), stud Curt (Chris Hems­worth), and hot blonde Jules (Anna Hutchison). The group leaves for a weekend at, where else, a cabin in the woods. While traveling, their GPS stops working and they meet an eerie gas station attendant, Mordecai (a creepy Tim De Zarn).

When they arrive at the cabin, it’s fairly homey but Marty feels funny about it. This isn’t quelled by a wolf head on the wall and a two-way mirror between rooms yet these friends still find ways to have fun.

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Comic Books Get a Dose of Reality Television

When you turn on the televi- sion, you will find a whole host of reality TV to enjoy. Some have wide appeal (“American Idol,” “America’s Got Talent”), are edu- cational (“Pawn Stars”), or are just plain odd (“My Strange Ad- diction”).

However, while reality TV seems geared to this medium, it has found a way to be explored through the comic book pages. These books aren’t copying real- ity TV, but are using the platform as an interesting background for superhero tales.

One of the more recent comics to utilize the popularity of real- ity TV is “America’s Got Powers” from Image Comics, written by Jonathan Ross and illustrated by Bryan Hitch. The series focuses on Tommy Watts as he enters a super competition where vari- ous young heroes compete with one another using their powers to become rich and famous. They battle against each other on the hit show called “America’s Got Pow- ers.”

While talking to comicbookre- sources.com, Hitch mentioned how the idea for the series evolved to become more about the char- acters and the story rather than about the show itself. He said, “Jonathan’s original one line pitch was ‘X-Factor for Super Heroes’ and it was a great idea, but as we started putting a story to that idea, it became much less about the show. Once we put living breath- ing characters into the scenario of the show, it became their story, not the show’s story, and the show became an environment.”

It seems as if the idea of he- roes fighting on a reality TV show struck a chord as a second printing has been announced via a press release on comicbookre- sources.com.

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Provost Film Series Struggles With Life Under the Bombs

entertainment-under-the-bombs-posterAs part of the Global Understanding Convention, the final film in this year’s Provost Film Series, Under the Bombs, was screened on April 5 in Pollak Theatre.

The evening included speakers Thomas Pearson, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, Azzam Elayan, professor of chemistry, and Saliba Sarsar, professor of political science.

The movie was set during Israel’s brief but devastating attack against Lebanon during 2006. Here, hundreds of air raids, as well as other bombings, took place, killing thousands of civilians. This film focused on the fictional narrative of one woman, named Zeina Nasrueddi (Nada Abou Farhat), as she attempted to find her sister Maha and son Karim.

Pearson was very concerned with the social and political issues that created the situation in Lebanon. “I chose the film Under the Bombs because of the issues involving Christians and Muslims in the Middle East. I wanted a film reflecting those cultural interactions and collisions.”

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These Short Stories Are a Real 'Knock' Out

entertainment-suddenly-a-knock-on-the-doorCritically renowned Israeli author Etgar Keret released another collection of short stories titled “Suddenly, a Knock at the Door” that fans will laud over for weeks. This is the fifth collection of short stories released in the United States by Keret, translated from Hebrew, and shows that even the most overused cliché can open a door to a world full of possibilities and strange people that make a story unique and life-like.

Keret has been publishing short stories since 1992, co-authoring some graphic novels released in Israel and working for the Israel film and television industry. Keret didn’t gain world recognition until 2004 when a collection of short stories (“The Bus Driver Who Wanted to be God and Other Short Stories”) was released in the U.S. Now his stories can be found in The New Yorker, The New York Times and featured on NPR’s “This American Life.” His stories have also been portrayed in graphic novels and his novella “Kneller’s Happy Campers,” which was adapted into the independent movie, Wristcutters: A Love Story starring Patrick Fugit and Tom Waits (it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival). Keret has won prestigious writing awards including being named a Chevalier of France’s Order of Arts and Letters.

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The Material Girl Hasn't Lost Her Pop Sound

entertainment-madonnaSuper Bowl XLVI was the last time that I have seen Madonna perform live, bringing back a sense of nostalgia for all her fans.On her Facebook page, she updated her status on December 17, 2010 which stated, “Its official! I need to move. I need to sweat. I need to make new music! Music I can dance to. I’m on the lookout for the maddest, sickest, most bad a** people to collaborate with. I’m just saying...”

The Facebook update had fans looking forward to her newest album, MDNA, which was released on March 23.

When I was growing up in the 90’s, Madonna was a music icon. Her hit songs such as “Like a Virgin,” “Papa Don’t Preach” and “Vogue” were heard on the radio and TV all the time.

Leading up to today, she has had a successful music and acting career. With the release of MDNA, Madonna is once again the talk of the year.

“Give Me All Your Luvin,” featuring Nicki Minaj, became the first hit single for MDNA. Those who watched the Super Bowl had a chance to watch her perform it live during the halftime show with Minaj.

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Students Discuss the Ocean "Here, There, Then, Now"

entertainment-here-there-then-now-1“Here, There, Then, Now,” a performance presented by students as a part of the Global Understanding Convention and the ART NOW: Performance, Art and Technology series, took place on April 5 in the 600 building courtyard. The outdoor setting was an appropriate venue for a presentation since it was all about the ocean.

The University has a special connection with the ocean, and for some, this is its best aspect while others despise it. That is why Professor Deanna Shoemaker’s Performance and Social Activism class centered their performance on the sea.

The students were required to write their own short stories about the ocean as well as interview five other individuals about what their feelings were on the ocean.

In the actual performance, students came out chanting “Here, there, then, now” and recited a Lucille Clifton poem, “The Mississippi River Enters the Gulf.” The poem details how many only think of the present, ignoring all that came before and will come after.

Dahlia Elsayed, professor of Art and Design and one of the individuals behind ART NOW, said, “We all go to the ocean and leave a mark and the waves come and destroy it.”

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Fine Art Stretches From Pollak Gallery to Ice House Gallery

entertainment-art-exhibitGraduating seniors presented their fine art pieces last Friday night as part of the Senior Art Exhibit on display at the Rotary Ice House Gallery and Pollak Gallery.

There were numerous paintings, photographs and sculptures by eight different artists, each having their own section to present work highlighting their progress and work at the University.

Both galleries were filled with families, friends, students and professors delighted with the art and offered plenty of kind remarks. Some spectators took pictures of pieces they liked while others enjoyed refreshments and the atmosphere, like Pablo Marin, a graduate of the Art Department.

“I came to see professors, students and, of course, all the great art. I really appreciate how the Art and Design departments are really well knit,” said Marin. “We’ve hung out before class, after class. Just the support they get from the faculty and from fellow students is pretty cool.”

The Rotary Ice House Gallery upstairs’ walls were filled with photography portraits by seniors Brittany Lee Platt and Danielle Kappock. Despite both using photography, their selections hung on opposite walls as their subjects and inspirations varied greatly.

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People Keep a Strong Tune While Working Through Life

entertainment-workingWorking, a witty and inspirational musical about the average working class citizen opened at the Lauren K. Woods Theatre on Wednesday, March 28. A moderately sized and eager crowd gathered to watch the latest theatrical success to be performed by University students.

The stage was set to satirize the worker mentality with each actor given a designated “cubicle.” Some were stacked on top of each other, a move that gave the actors and actresses much more room to dance and interact without having to leave the stage or stand idly by.

A screen at the top of the set displayed quotes from Studs Terkel, the author of “Working..” “People are hungry for stories. It’s part of our very being. Storytelling is a form of immortality too. Stories pass from one generation to another,” said Terkel. This hunger for stories inspired a musical that was captivating for more than just its catchy music and skillful acting; it was captivating because the musical is about us.

Director and Choreographer Nicole Ricciardi expressed her love of the play’s content. “I like it because every word is true. Every night I hear something different. [This version is] brand new, it’s a complete reworking of the original.”

The actors in Workingplayed members of many different professions, so each role was simply titled, “Man #1” or “Woman #2.” The cast consisted of Brandon Wiener (Man #1), Michael Rosas (Man #2), Henry O. Siebecker (Man #3), Taylor Bogan (Woman #1), Jasmine Walker (Woman #2) and Sarah Clemency (Woman #3). “The play used to have 26 actors,” Ricciardi says. “It was adapted to only use six. It was incredible.”

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Don’t Evade the Comedy of 21 Jump Street

Entertainment-21_jump_streetWhen you think back to high school, do you shudder at the thought of braces and being shoved into lockers? Or do you think of varsity jackets and ruling the hallways? No matter what your repressed memories of the golden years are, 21 Jump Streetwill still keep you laughing all the way to the “Korean Jesus” of this famous address.

For Schmidt (Jonah Hill), his nightmares of high school consist of bleach blonde hair and being rejected by his dream girl for the prom. Jenko (Channing Tatum), on the other hand, looks fondly back on those four years as the football star.

However, several years have passed since the awkward time of adolescence, and Jenko and Schmidt are now partners-againstcrime (or the lack thereof) as police officers. But, being that they are basically inept at doing anything but handing out tickets, they are assigned to patrol the local park on their bicycles.

After a stint involving a local gang of bikers and a lack of Miranda rights, Jenko and Schmidt are given a new assignment: go undercover as high school students to try and bust who is creating and selling a new drug that is taking over the campus and killing students. Their operation is known as 21 Jump Street, which is also the address the operation is based out of, known as the rundown Korean church in town.

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The 31st Annual Black Maria Film + Video Festival Was Hip

entertainment-hip-priestFrom a Hip Priest to dancing buttons, the 31st annual Black Maria Film + Video Festival treated viewers to a fascinating collection of narrative, documentary, animated or experimental short films on March 26 in Pollak Theatre.

Donna Dolphin, associate professor of communication and juror for this year’s festival, welcomed a large crowd. Dolphin added that this festival has been held on campus for 21 years. She continued to say 13 of this year’s 70 films would be screened at the University. Dolphin also mentioned that “Black Maria is a competition and celebration of indie works, some of which are experimental in nature. The work you are about to see is different from what you are accustomed to on TV or when you go to Loew’s.”

Dolphin added the films “can be challenging at times,” and that “Black Maria engages us with the filmmaker to do a little work.” She then introduced John Columbus, founder and director of the Black Maria Film + Video Festival.

Columbus explained Black Maria, located in West Orange, was the first motion picture studio, where inventor Thomas Edison would make short, silent films.

Columbus also discussed the first six films and said Hip Priest was a “labor of love” for director George de Domenico, “who grew up Roman Catholic and wanted to do something on a street preacher.” Colubmus said that for We’re Part of the City: 4th Movement,dealing with Occupy Wall Street, “What happens to the sound is important… think of a sonic artist put in the middle of a protest movement.”

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Natasha Trethewey Captivated Listeners With Her Poetry

poetry-readingAfrican-American poet Natasha Trethewey visited Wilson Hall Auditorium last Thursday to read poems from her upcoming release titled “Thrall.” The event was presented by the University’s Center for the Arts Visiting Writer’s Series.

Trethewey, born in Mississippi, is a renowned writer with three collections of poetry released including “Native Guard,” which earned her the 2007 Pulitzer Prize in poetry. She is also the author of a creative non-fiction book titled “Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.”

Trethewey has been the recipient of many awards and honors and was inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame.

The event was attended by many including undergraduate and graduate students, professors and fans of Trethewey.

Hannah Portnoy, an adjunct for the English department, who was attending the event with her class, said the students “really wanted to come” to this event and she thought it be great for them as well. “I just love poetry and literature. We’re in the English department and I think that it’s good to have [students] exposed to it,” said Portnoy. “It’s very important for the students to gain experience in listening; it adds another dimension. And it’s always wonderful to meet and hear the poet.”

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I See Stars Has the Right Beat in Digital Renegade

digital-renegadeIt appears that everything nowadays is slowly making the move to become digital. One can shop, read the newspaper and even pay bills through digital methods.

Is it possible that even rock and metalcore are moving in a digital direction as well? With the release of I See Stars’ new album Digital Renegade, it certainly appears to be possible.

I See Stars is composed of lead singer Devin Oliver, unclean vocalist Zach Johnson, Jeff Valentine on bass guitar, Brent Allen on lead guitar, Jimmy Gregerson on rhythm guitar, and Andrew Oliver on drums.

Digital Renegadeis the band’s third full-length album and their strongest effort to date.

Many fans of the band were disappointed with their last release The End of the World Party which was released a little over a year ago. The band took a pop punk approach to the album that was considerably lighter than their first album, 3-D. Many fans were unhappy with this approach and wanted I See Stars to return to their heavier roots. I See Stars seemed to get that memo and Digital Renegade was exactly what the fans ordered.

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A Citizen’s View of the Algerian Civil War

rachidaImagine living in constant fear that the ones who will rob your house and potentially kill you aren’t foreign terrorists or some enemy of the state but your neighbors from next door. This is the fear that characters in the film Rachida f eel o n a d aily b asis. A t one point, school teacher Rachida (Ibtissem Djouadi) even exclaims, “I’m in exile in my own country!”

Rachidawas screened in Pollak Theatre as the third movie in this year’s Provost Film Series. It is set during the civil war that affected the country in the 1990’s. If you were like me, you probably weren’t even aware that there was such a country called Algeria back then (if it’s for the same reason as me, then you were too young to know or care).

 Dr. Thomas Pearson, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, gave a quick history lesson about the Algerian civil war before the movie started. However, while it was very informative and gave good context for the film, it didn’t make the audience resonate with the Algerians nearly as much as the movie did.

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The Hunger Games is a Well-Played Adaptation

hunger-gamesThe Hunger Games certainly did not disappoint fans as it hit theaters this past weekend. The first adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ best-selling book trilogy managed to stay relatively faithful to the source material without compromising the integrity of the movie.

The action-packed sci-fi film introduces audiences to Panem, a future version of North America that has been divided into 12 districts. The districts are closely monitored and regulated by the Capitol.

In order to prevent an uprising, the Capitol holds the Hunger Games every year. Here, a boy and a girl between the ages of 12 and 18 from each district are randomly chosen and forced to enter a fight to the death, which is televised and considered required viewing for all Panem residents.

Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) volunteers to take the place of her younger sister in the games. She only volunteers to protect her sister, but the reality is that she does have a good chance at surviving because she illegally hunts. She has become the main provider for her family since her father died.

In the book, a lot of time is spent on Katniss’ role as the adult in her family, but the movie manages to get the message across very quickly. Though her mother is only in a couple scenes, the way Katniss speaks to her clearly conveys that Katniss is the caretaker.

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The Power of Forgiveness is Explored in Fambul Tok

03.21.12_Page_12_Image_0002Could you forgive someone who committed atrocities to you, your family and your community? That was the question posed in the documentary, Fambul Tok, which was screened in Pollak Theatre on March 5 as part of On Screen In Person (a film series where directors present their films and partake in Q&A’s).

On Screen In Person was sponsored by the Department of Communication and Center for the Arts and funded by the National Endowment of the Arts’ Regional Touring Program.

Andrew Demirjian, specialist professor of communication, welcomed everyone and introduced director Sara Terry. He said Terry has won a number of awards and is founder of the Aftermath Project, a non-profit organization that allows photographers to capture images in post-war countries. Demirjian said, “I am excited to watch this with you and have a great discussion.”

Terry thanked the audience and said the film was “a very specific post-conflict story” and asked, “What does it mean to be human?” Terry added, “I think the film is best experienced the way it was edited.”

Fambul Tok focused on villages in Sierra Leone, Africa, where fambul tok, or family talk, is used to forgive people for actions committed during its civil war (1991- 2002). Performed around a bon fire at night, victims and attackers face each other in the hopes of amending relations. Individuals are also recorded talking about their past experiences before their fambul tok ceremony. The film also featured John Caulker, founder of Fambul Tok, as he traveled around the country and tried to help bring peace to these communities. (He’s presented as a strong worker and inspiration for fixing his country through this “old tradition.”)

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Prepare For Batman, the Apocalypse, and More at the Movies This Year

Until John Carter (3-D) and 21 Jump Street arrived in theaters, the 2012 movie season wasn’t really packing a punch with a few exceptions (i.e. Chronicle).

Yet, with these recent releases, it appears as if this dry spell is ending as a number of exciting films are coming out. So, here are 10 films to anticipate for the next nine months.

1) 4:44- Last Day on Earth

(March 23)

End of the world movies are always terrifying by asking what would you do? Things get scarier when you know there’s a deadline like in 4:44- Last Day on Earth. While blockbusters like 2012 and Armageddon display large scales of disasters, this movie looks to use its intimate setting to grasp human drama regarding the end rather than the actual catastrophe.

William DeFoe, who always puts a 100 percent into his roles, seems set to do so again with his distinctive presence as an average Joe facing Earth’s demise.

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The Vagina Monologues Continued to Raise Awareness For V-Day

03.21.12 Page 13 Image 0002The University held its eighth annual performance of The Vagina Monologues in Pollak Theatre on March 6. The play was written to raise awareness of violent and sexual crimes committed against women.

The Vagina Monologues has come to support the V-Day movement by raising money, and garnering support for the issue of sexual violence. The “V” in V-Day stands for “all sorts of V words, like victory, but especially vagina,” said one of the performers. The proceeds of this movement go to local charities and shelters.

This particular performance of the play was to benefit the local charity, 180: Turning Lives Around. Sara Billings, a member of this charity, ran an information booth in the lobby. “Our mission is to end domestic violence in the community. The proceeds are going to our agency, so we really appreciate the support and assistance in raising awareness.”

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Say Anything Has a New Attitude With Anarchy, My Dear

anarachyIt’s been almost three years since Max Bemis has released any material from his alternative pop punk band Say Anything after endless touring, splitting from major record label RCA and getting married to Eisley vocalist, Sherri DuPree. Now they are backed by highly respected indie label Equal Vision Records and reteaming with producer Tim O’Heir who helped create Say Anything’s masterpiece album …Is a Real Boy.

Bemis is aiming to take back the crown as modern punk’s most creative, sarcastic and craziest singer/ songwriter with Say Anything’s new album Anarchy, My Dear. But does it have the potential to live up to their breakthrough album, or is it just more material to add to the pile?

“Burn a Miracle,” the first single released, sets the tone for the album with bright intricate melodies mixed with a rough edgy pulse as Bemis loudly proclaims, “I need a song meant to rally the devils.”

It sounds like any other Say Anything song with the middle taking an immediate turn into a darker tone as Bemis screams into the microphone, “Burn a miracle, burn America.”

This is followed by the second single, “Say Anything,” which sounds like a less distorted version of their older song “It’s A Metaphor Fool” off their EP …Was A Real Boy. It’s just as catchy but all too familiar.

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Comedy of Errors Has Audiences Laughing Across the World

William Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors, starring British comedian Lenny Henry, was performed at Royal National Theatre in London, England last Thursday with National Theatre Live broadcasting the performance across the world at 700 cinemas in 22 countires, including Pollak Theatre.

Alyssa Caporaso, a sophomore and an employee at Pollak Theatre, was attending the event for a theatre appreciation class and helping to collect sign-in sheets for the classes. She had high hopes for tonight’s production as she heard it was “very funny.”

“The shows are very cool,” said Caporaso. “[At] these kinds of events you will see a lot of people come out because obviously they’re all students. And Monmouth offers a lot of great programs.”

The play begins with Egeon (Joseph Mydell), a merchant of Syracuse imprisoned by Solinus (Ian Burfield), the Duke of Ephesus, for being in the city illegally and is to be executed unless he comes up with a thousand marks. Egeon begs for mercy as he tells a tragic tale of his wife giving birth to twins and buys a set of twins to “attend” to his sons. The family then set sail back home but the ship was destroyed, splitting the family apart.

Now Egeon’s son, Antipholus of Syracuse (Lenny Henry), is all grown up and goes out in search for his twin brother and mother along with his servant Dromio (Lucian Msamati). Egeon is worried he’ll lose his whole family, embarking on his own quest until he is captured. Duke sympathizes with Egeon, granting him one more day to find his son and come up with the fine or be killed.

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Don’t Fall Asleep While Traveling Between Parallel Universes

The pilot for NBC’s new drama “Awake” is phenomenal. The show does what most pilot episodes are incapable of: Giving you much more than what is in the trailer. Most new shows spend their pilot giving you an extended version of their trailer, but “Awake” goes through most of that footage in the first 10 minutes.

We see Michael Britten (Jason Issacs) get into a car accident with his wife and son, and it’s revealed that he is living in two realities. In one his son died, while in the other, his wife was the victim. Michael doesn’t know which is real and has no desire for either reality to disappear, but that was just the first 10 minutes.

Michael is also a homicide detective. In each world he has a different partner and a different case. Details from each case seem to slip into the other. The address 611 Waverly Place is important in the killing of a taxi driver while the parking spot 611 in Waverly Parking Garage is important in his kidnapping case.

Details like that go back and forth, which should indicate which reality is a dream, but don’t.

One detail will appear in the reality with his son and then appear in the reality with his wife. Meanwhile, another detail will appear in his wife’s reality and then slip into his son’s reality. Viewers don’t know which reality is real and neither does Michael.

If your head is spinning already, don’t worry too much. The show makes it really easy to identify which reality Michael is in, and understanding the premise is much easier to watch than read. The show flows really well so that it is fast paced but is still easy for viewers to grasp.

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There’s More Than One Reason to Stay Out of This House

Editor’s Note: Recently, The Outlook attended the Associated Collegiate Press College Journalism Convention in Seattle, WA. While there, they had the oppurtunity to see an advance screening of the suspense-thriller, Silent House, opening on March 9.

“Remember what we went through?” asks Sophia (Julia Taylor Ross), the eerie-eyed childhood playmate of Sarah (Elizabeth Olsen), when she unexpectedly shows up at Sarah’s doorstep after a number of years apart.

Unfortunately, Sophia, Silent House is as forgettable as the mothballs, wicker furniture and broken folding chairs that sit untouched in corners throughout its dusty chambers.

Sarah is a blatantly bland and awkward college dropout who visits her family’s run-down lake house with her father John (Adam Trese) and Uncle Peter (Eric Sheffer Stevens), two brothers who maintain their childlike and idiotic bickering left over from their younger years. John is a seemingly tender and vulnerable dad who banters effortlessly with his daughter, while Uncle Peter is slightly more reckless and juvenile, easily falling into bouts of temper tantrums with his brother.

When Uncle Peter gets in yet another stint with John and storms off into the night, he leaves Sarah and John with the daunting duty of sorting through the family keepsakes that are scattered in heaps of plastic and piles. When Sarah hears a suspicious sound, she asks that John investigate, and when he doesn’t return, Sarah sets off through the house to try and find him. Like an episode of “Hoarders” gone wrong, this sends the characters in a scramble about the house that’s filled with moldy men, suspicious photographs, and wandering children.

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Mario Kart 7 Hits a Few Bumps in the Road on the 3DS

And they’re off… whether you like it or not in 3D. Like 3D, your opinion for Mario Kart 7 will most likely be that you love it for staying true to the formula of Mario Kart racers or you’ll hate it for not changing a thing since Mario Kart 64. I’m more on the latter track in this case.

To be fair, there is some, and I do mean some, innovation for Mario Kart 7. As far as game play goes, you’ll find that there is the new hang glider on all of the karts. Fortunately it isn’t an item you pick up but something that will always be implemented on the course and you’ll have to get acquainted with it.

One of the better things about the Mario Kart games is their easiness to pick up and play. You drive forward, you use an item, that’s all you need to know to pick the game up and play it. There are a few levels of depth, mostly in mastering drift boosting, and now in making the use out of gliding in the air. Mario Kart 7 is no exception, which isn’t a bad thing.

As far as graphics go, the game looks pretty. It’s vibrant and colorful, each track has a unique look to it and the colors match the theme the track represents. Since it’s on the 3DS I’m obligated to bring up that elephant in the room and answer the question: Is the 3D any good?

I won’t lie, the 3D actually looks decent. The racers actually appear like they’re jumping out as they turn the track. However, the rest of the track is blurred and it’s difficult to tell where the items and obstacles are. It really messed with my hand eye coordination, so I just turned the 3D off and never turned it back on.

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The Music and Voice of Whitney Houston Remembered

Pop icon, R&B soul singer and actress Whitney Houston passed away February 11, a day before the 54th Grammy Awards, in Beverly Hills, California, at 48 years old.

Clive Davis, the music mogul that originally signed Houston to a recording contract, still held his annual pre-Grammy show on the day of her death, telling audience members, “Whitney was a beautiful person and a talent beyond compare. She graced this stage with her regal presence and gave so many memorable performances here over the years,” according to the Los Angeles Times.

Houston’s memorial service took place this past Saturday at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey where her singing abilities first began to shine as a soloist of the junior gospel choir.

The funeral was invitation only, but was attended by celebrities like Davis, Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys and her Bodyguard co-star, Kevin Costner.

Houston leaves behind a legacy as a recording artist, being the only singer to have seven consecutive number one hits and the only female singer to have two albums reach multi-platinum in the same year, according to Recording Industry Association of America.

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Recalling the Best “Simpsons” Stories: The Most Memorable Episodes Out of 500

Whether you like “The Simpsons” or not, this show has definitely left a footprint on our pop culture. I n certain ways, we can recall the most memorable jokes, stories, and overall hilarity featuring Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Maggie and all the residents of Springfield even if one has only seen a few episodes.

With “The Simpsons” having reached their 500th episode, it seems like a good time for this mega-fan to review the series. Although I could go on and on about my favorite episodes, I’ve chose to narrow down my list by focusing on each family member, original stories, Halloween specials, and Springfield itself along with honorable (or d’ohonorable) mentions.

Favorite Homer Episode:

“Mr. Plow”

Among all the Homer episodes, the ones that stand out to me are when Homer leaves the Springfield Nuclear Plant to get a new job, and his career as a snow plow driver tops the l ist. N ot o nly d oes t his s tory highlight Homer’s idiocy (buying a snow plow at a car show when he was supposed to get something for Marge), but it demonstrates his spontaneity to just do whatever he wants regardless of consequences.

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Exposing Issues in Hip-Hop Beyond Beats and Rhymes

The documentary Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes was screened on February 16 in Bey Hall’s H.R. Young Theater.

The event was hosted by Claude Taylor of the Communication Department and welcomed all University students and faculty to view the documentary and participate in a discussion.

The film screening was part of the University’s celebration of Black History Month, which continues to host events until the end of the month.

Directed by Bryon Hurt, the film thoroughly presented the deeper social issues that are apparent in hip-hop music, but often ignored. Within the opening moments of the documentary, film director and anti-violence activist Hurt identifies himself as a life-long hip-hop fan that is conflicted by the issues with the music he loves.

“The more I grew and the more I learned about sexism and violence and homophobia, the more those lyrics became unacceptable to me,” Hurt said in his introduction to the film, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2006.

Through interviews with hip-hop fans, rap artists, industry executives, and hip-hop culture experts, Hurt successfully exposes issues of masculinity, violence, representation of women, and homophobia within hip-hop music and the effect it has on society and, more specifically young black men.

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Music and Theatre Arts Department is Working on Spring Musical

Typically when you try to contact anyone famous, they ignore you. If you’re Nicole Ricciardi, assistant professor of Music and Theatre Arts, they might get back to you immediately. At least that’s what happened when Ricciardi contacted Wicked composer Stephen Schwartz about doing the revised version of Working at the University this spring.

The original musical was written in 1978, making it a bit dated. It’s about how jobs affect and shape everyone’s lives, so the concept is still very much relevant. However, there were references and jobs that really don’t exist anymore. Ricciardi said, “I read it and I didn’t like it that much. I did some research and heard through the grapevine that Stephen Schwartz revised it, and that it had actually been produced last year in Chicago. […] On a whim I wrote to Stephen Schwartz and said this is the situation: I’ve committed to directing your show, I love the show, but I’d love to work on the newer version of the show.”

Schwartz’s office almost immediately contacted Ricciardi with much enthusiasm. They were completely on board with the idea of the revised version being performed at the University, but the revision wasn’t quite complete.

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