When Kingsman: The Secret Service debuted in early 2015, it was a breath of fresh air for a tired genre that was long overdue for a stylish makeover. Director Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass, X-Men: First Class) continued his prowess in successfully adapting comic book-based properties, recruiting a veteran cast with the likes of Colin Firth, Samuel L. Jackson, and Michael Caine, as well as the star-in-the-making inclusion of Taron Egerton. The Secret Service provided an over-the-top, balls-to-the-wall send-up of spy movies, becoming one of the year’s best surprises.
And yet, even with how high I was on the first film, I went into the new sequel with some reservations. I was unsure that itwould truly innovate on the series and was also worried that it would succumb to the unfortunate sequel-itis that mires many blockbuster films, resulting in a predictable and unimaginative follow-up. While The Golden Circle is certainly less original than its precursor story was, the action remains inventive and the plentiful jokes land more often than not, making for an enjoyably ridiculous romp that’s a worthwhile addition to the franchise.
Friday’s here, and so is another Meet the Editors post! This one focuses on Assistant Poetry and Fiction/Nonfiction Editor Noah Slowik, who also recently began blogging for us!
Noah is a junior studying English Language Arts and Secondary Education at Lewis University, with a minor in Theology. On campus, he works as a tutor in the Writing Center and as a reporter for The Flyer. He is entering his third year coaching high school boys’ volleyball at Breaker Volleyball Club and also works seasonally at Dunkin’ Donuts. He enjoys reading the science fiction novels and short stories of H.G. Wells, Kurt Vonnegut, Octavia Butler, and Ted Chiang, among others. Inspired by the imaginative tales of these authors, he has also started writing science fiction stories of his own. In his free time, Noah explores bands emerging from the indie music scene in Chicago, such as Twin Peaks, The Walters, and Whitney.
It was a pleasant surprise to discover that Hippo Campus released a brand new EP last week, even after they dropped their first full-length album just earlier this year. After listening to the lead track, “baseball,” one could say that the arrival of this EP came straight out of left field (pun intended).
This band — a band whose sound defines what it means to be indie rock in 2017 — from St. Paul, Minnesota has only been active since 2013, and their popularity has been on a steep incline ever since. They’ve played at festivals across the country including South by Southwest, Lollapalooza, and Bonnaroo, so they are definitely a band to keep on your indie rock radar.
Esteemed director Darren Aronofsky’s (Black Swan, Requiem for a Dream) latest, mother!, is a certifiably polarizing film. It features a cast of beautiful, seat-filling stars (Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem among them), but what transpires on-screen is anything but their regular fare — and this is a movie that probably won’t be filling seats for much longer. In fact, the rare ‘F’ Cinemascore the film received this past weekend is something I’m almost certain Aronofsky was shooting for (how he convinced anyone to fund this I surely will never understand). Despite what the mass audience may think of it, I’m actually here to convince you to see this movie; my hope being that maybe you’ll love and respect it just as I do.
mother! forgoes an easily digestible first act. Instead, Aronofsky slowly hints to the bigger picture he has ingeniously planned, all before the film explodes into a raucous second half and unforgettable finale. Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem play an unnamed couple referred to in the credits simply as “Mother” and “Him,” respectively. Together they live in a beautiful house secluded from the rest of the world. He’s a renowned poet in search of the right inspiration, while she works on crafting and finishing the perfect home.
Happy Friday, and welcome to the first “Meet the Editors” feature of the semester, wherein we introduce the new members of our team. First on the list is Ashley Zizich, an Assistant Editor of Poetry, Fiction, and Non-Fiction for the Jet Fuel Review.
Ashley is a senior studying English, with a Concentration in Literature and a Minor in Professional Writing. Her love for books and poetry fuel her desire to become an editor or copyeditor after graduation. Some of her favorite writers include Sylvia Plath and F. Scott Fitzgerald. When she isn’t reading, she enjoys going on adventures with her two children and gardening.
If you haven’t heard of this indie-folk-rock band from Cleveland yet, I would highly recommend checking out The Lighthouse and the Whaler’s new single, “Paths,” on the streaming service of your choice. Similar to a few of the songs off their 2015 album, Mont Royal, the quartet packs high energy and palpable emotion behind their fast-paced sound in this brand new single.
The melody of this song (similar to their other greatest hits) contains a combination between high highs and low lows. The head banging melody of hard electric guitar, the harmonious background singers, and the powerful sound of a catchy drum beat create an incredible chorus which highlights the refrain of the song:
“I was lookin’ to find the path you took, I was lookin’ to find the ground you shook.”