While we’re only two months into 2018, the year’s most eagerly anticipated film has already arrived with Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, which is a decidedly stunning addition in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Coogler (Fruitvale Station, Creed) directs the long-running franchise’s first black-led film with dazzling, groundbreaking results, ultimately becoming a true cause for celebration.
The character of Black Panther (played by the wonderful Chadwick Boseman) made his impressive MCU debut in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War, instantly becoming a fan favorite through the slight appearance. Here, T’Challa, the recently-crowned king of Wakanda — which is a fictional, secretly prosperous African nation in possession of virtually infinite supplies of a made-up super metal called vibranium — is really allowed the chance to be the A-list superhero he was always destined to become. It was no question that this film and this character would end up being an important milestone in the superhero genre as well as an inspiration to countless children around the world, but it’s extremely gratifying to be able to relay that Black Panther is also the stellar solo-outing that so many of us wanted it to be.
The beginning of the new year has turned out to be pretty great in terms of new music, and this past week was no exception. Courtney Barnett released a new single and announced her upcoming solo album for May. Meanwhile, Car Seat Headrest and Born Ruffians had entire full-length records that came out on Friday.
I’ve highlighted multiple tracks from Car Seat Headrest recently, so I’ve gone ahead and skipped adding a track by them this week. However, Born Ruffians and Courtney Barnett are highlighted in this week’s playlist, alongside Sufjan Stevens, Young the Giant, Khalid, and 15 other artists.
In our final Meet the Editors post this semester, we are happy to have yet another Fiction & Nonfiction Editor to introduce you to, so please welcome Eryn Stochelski.
Eryn is currently a junior majoring in English and minoring in creative and professional writing. Her conflicting loves of English and medicine confuse her on a daily basis, but she is so far handling it by reading novels during her breaks at her healthcare job. She enjoys writing, reading, swimming, blogging, and obsessing over people in white coats. Some of her favorite genres are fantasy, thriller, young adult, classics, and re-tellings. If she’s not busy trying to figure out which path to pursue, you can find her reading at a café, studying herbalism and medicine, or jogging at night.
Editor’s Note: Below is the first piece in a new film series here on the Jet Fuel Review Blog, written by Yana Moberg, which will focus specifically on foreign film reviews.
Demon, a Polish-Israeli film written and directed by Marcin Wrona, presents a haunting story centered around a young couple, Zanetta and Piotr (Agnieszka Zulewska and Itay Tyran respectively). Piotr’s an English-born groom just trying to fit in with his new Polish wife’s mildly xenophobic family. His attempts at speaking their language is rather awkward, but still, Piotr perseveres to become accepted in this new culture, including his insistence on moving into and renovating the rural home that the bride had inherited from her grandfather.
Piotr also plans to make a positive impression on his in-law’s by having a traditional Polish wedding reception (something the married couple never experienced because they previously only had a court wedding), which will also take place on the new property. But in the process, Piotr discovers a skeleton in the yard. From here, things progress rather expectedly.
When you are stressed out with life’s endless chaos — whether it be due to putting on a “happy face” for grumpy customers at your retail job, staying up until 2 a.m. grading papers for class, or having to write a ten-page research paper — it seems that turning to nature as a safe haven for stress relief is common, and can often save you from growing too many unwanted grey hairs on your head.
Mindfulness and meditation expert, John Kabat-Zinn, author of the book Wherever You Go There You Are (the book I based my previous posts on), suggests that if you cannot retreat to nature, then to imagine and embody a mountain. The reason to envision mountains above other nature panoramas, is because mountains possess organic strength formed by elemental rock. Mountains are rock-hard and rock-solid, and therefore their firmness and robust being should be something we adopt and encompass within ourselves. Mountains are unchanging even through violent thunderstorms, harsh winds, and blizzard conditions; despite these situations, the mountain sits in stillness unfazed.
Welcome back Christian’s Cinematic Syntax! Hopefully these entries are leaving those lasting impressions that Chris Marker refers to in the film I’m looking at today, La Jetée!
After taking a brief hiatus…I am back! Back to remind the reader of the power and beauty of cinematic expression. With that said, I am moving forward into the crevasse of cinema to allow for the spirit and essence of the art form to be understood and appreciated. I want the reader to understand cinema’s ability to channel and freeze a perspective into something that connects the viewer to an almost metaphysical level.
In the spirit, I am excited to dissect La Jetée, the 28-minute master-work by Chris Marker, a talent that stretches the title of the conventional filmmaker. Marker has an incredible versatility through the art form, being a documentarian, a photographer, and a multimedia artist. The titles that Marker totes are of importance to not only the context of La Jetée, but also of the film movement he is typically categorized in, known as the “Left Bank.” So, before analyzing a film such as La Jetée, I believe it is necessary to introduce some of my readers to this specific movement in cinema.
Have you heard that recently released Black Panther soundtrack yet? The one that Kendrick Lamar and Top Dawg Entertainment curated 14 new tracks for, featuring the likes of SZA, Future, Khalid, and a slew of other great artists? Yeah, it’s pretty damn good, so go right now and check it out!
When you’ve returned from listening to that record, you’ll find that one of the featured tracks on the Jukebox this week comes from said soundtrack, but we’ve also added a number of brand new singles from other artists like MGMT, Kero Kero Bonito, and Car Seat Headrest. As always, there’s another 16 tracks on the playlist, making for a grand total of 20 awesome songs all compiled in one place for your listening convenience.