Walt Disney Pictures has come a long way from making full-length animated features like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, and Peter Pan. In the 21st century, the company has reinvented itself with live-action blockbusters like Pirates of the Caribbean, state-of-the-art computer animated films like Cars and Frozen, and adaptations of children’s literary classics like Roald Dahl’s The BFG and Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time (out in theaters this March). In recent years, Disney has expanded into more lucrative markets like comic book blockbusters (ie. Marvel comics) and, of course, the Star Wars franchise. The latest Star Wars entry, The Last Jedi, hit the $1 billion mark in worldwide box office sales barely three weeks after its US theatrical release. With a plethora of material to work with, and plenty of money coming in, one would think Disney is far passed its tipping point, but that might not be the case at all. Continue reading →
I’ve been saying it for years: vinyl is the way to go and Millennials are finally catching on! Best Buy announced this week that its stores will stop selling CDs (compact discs) altogether this July 1. Meanwhile vinyl sales have been steadily rising over the last few years, becoming, once again, a high-demand item for music retailers who have been struggling to compete with digital streaming services and music downloaded from the Internet. According to The Guardian, vinyl sales saw a 53% increase between 2015 and 2016, the highest sales numbers for vinyl since 1991. Although vinyls have always been kept around by independent retailers like Half Price Books and local stores like Cheapo Records and Electric Fetus here in Minneapolis, retailers like Best Buy and Target have caught up with the trend. As some begin to drop CD sales, none seem to have any plans to stop selling vinyl. Continue reading →
In 2001, shortly after the World Trade Center attacks on September 11th, two Chicago-based educators, Kevin Coval and Anna West, decided to create an outlet for young high school students to express themselves through spoken-word poetry. Nearly 20 years later, Louder Than A Bomb has grown from a small number of local high school teams to a full-scale competition made up of 120 teams from high schools all over Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. The success of the program has inspired educators to form spoken-word poetry competitions in 13 cities across the country, and even in Canada. Today, Louder Than A Bomb (LTAB) prides itself on being the largest youth poetry festival in the world. The success of the program, as well as the students and educators involved with organizing it every year, was the subject of a 2011 documentary, Louder Than A Bomb, by filmmakers Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskel.
Jacobs and Siskel followed four individuals competing in the 2011 competition to paint a portrait of youth outlook on world events, social climate, politics, and their own personal stories. The film not only received praise at the Chicago International Film Festival, but also at film festivals all over the country, including Milwaukee, Cleveland, St. Louis, Philadelphia, and Portland. Prelims for the upcoming 2018 festival are being held at Columbia College starting on February 21st-22nd. You can check eligibility rules and sign your team up on the Young Chicago Authors website. Louder Than A Bomb is available on Amazon Prime, and if you have an account I would definitely add it to your Watchlist.
The nominations for the 90th Annual Academy Awards were released last week and met with mixed reactions. Some were ecstatic, others were disappointed, but how many were surprised? The Academy has been attempting to present itself in a new light in the years since a slew of all-white nominees was presented in the Best Actor category at the 2015 ceremony. Despite the #OscarsSoWhite movement that followed, the same thing happened the next year, sending organizers into a furor that found them completely revamping the membership list in the hopes of getting more diversified nominations. Although the 89th ceremony saw some changes in terms of the voting body, it seemed more like a desperate attempt to show change rather than a legitimate attempt to actually change. Now, in the age of #MeToo, this year’s nominees also fell shy of expectations. Continue reading →
Jugrnaut recently joined forces with Mitchell & Ness on a new beanie to get us all through these harsh winter months. The speckle knit features Jugrnaut’s popular “Shield” logo along with Mitchell & Ness’ iconic cursive script on the black. Subtle, yet a nice way to stand out, these are still available in store and online for $36. Click the link below for a better look.
The trailers for Oscar-winning director Scott Cooper’s new western-drama, Hostiles, makes a point of showcasing Masanobu Takayanagi’s stunning cinematography. Reactions to the film in general, however, have left some scratching their heads. Written and directed by Cooper from a manuscript by the late Donald E. Stewart, whose wife happened upon it in 2012, Hostiles follows US Army Captain Joseph Blockler as he escorts a Cheyenne war chief and his family home to their tribal lands in Montana from Fort Berringer, New Mexico in 1892. Blocker is portrayed by Oscar-winner Christian Bale in his third outing with Cooper, and is supported onscreen by Rosamund Pike, Rory Cochrane, Jonathan Majors, Adam Beach, David Midthunder, and Wes Studi as Chief Yellow Hawk. While Pike’s performance is certainly impressing critics, others claim the film inappropriately boasts its own brilliance. Continue reading →
Tony the Scribe is a man of many mediums. From directing his “Just Breathe” installation spotlighting the environmental challenges inner city & minority communities often face, to maintaining himself as a fixture within the Twin Cities music scene, Tony has found himself busy as an activist and artist. The release party for his upcoming EP Mixed Messages promises to captivate the audience with a one time only performance installation directed by Tony, as well as performances from Sarah White, Andrew Broder, and DJ sets by Minnie Blanco. This show is 21+ and tickets are still available for $8 ($10 @ door), click the link below to purchase yours now.
Location: 2709 E Lake Street, Minneapolis When: Saturday, February 3rd // 4PM-10PM
Super Bowl weekend is right around the corner and there is no shortage of dope events to keep an eye on. Taylor Gang’s own Ty Dolla $ign will be live at El Nuevo Rodeo this Saturday, along with hometown favorite Finding Novyon. The event will also feature a fashion show as well as pop up shops for those looking to pick up some new gear. The main event is 18+, but ends at 10PM, while the after party will only be open to patrons over 21. General admission tickets are still available for $90, and you can purchase VIP passes for $190; click the link below to buy yours now.
Location: 10 5th St S, Minneapolis When: Thursday, February 8th // 6PM-10PM
After a stint in Colorado, Kihndyn Peters is back in Minnesota and plans to hit the ground running. The release show for his album Kihndyn & The Brain is right around the corner and the lineup is pretty solid. The show will feature performances from Kihndyn Peters, Student 1, Will Robinson, Lewiee Blaze, Demon Marcus, and special guests Exxe. This event is 18+ and tickets are currently available for only $7 in advance ($10 @ door), click the link below to cop yours now.
The good people from Jugrnaut are as proud as anyone of their Chicago roots. The downtown street wear boutique has led the scene for quite some time pioneering a market that continues to boom in the Windy City. One of their latest releases features one of the city’s most iconic photos of the skyline, a direct strike of lightning on the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower). A clean look for anyone looking to rep the GO, these come in both tee shirts ($34) and pullover hoodies ($68), click the link below if you like what you see.