Look Play Listen is the library’s team of AV appreciators.
Each month we’ll round up some of our favorite music, film/TV, and video game reviews from our staff and put them in one easy to read, easy to locate blog post.
Hunt for the Wilderpeople is a phenomenal film full of the heart and humor director Taika Waititi does so well. It follows Ricky Baker, a child in New Zealand’s foster care system who must adjust from his city life to a life in the bush.The screenplay walks the perfect balance between light, humorous, and heart wrenching.
I found this film quotable, comforting, and perfect for rewatching. If I was only able to watch films from a single director for the rest of my life, Taika Waititi would be on the very top of the list. If you enjoyed the new Thor film I would highly suggest giving Hunt for the Wilderpeople a watch…or twelve.
–Margo from Youth Services
I’m not sure how to feel about the Netflix series adaptation coming this month, but Spike Lee’s original She’s Gotta Have It is a truly special film. This artful rom-com blends humor, drama, and emotion in a manner few narratives ever can; there’s also a nuanced exploration of sexuality and class dynamics (among other things) underpinning the whole production, but it doesn’t demand that you analyze it– She’s Gotta Have It remains disarmingly enjoyable at face value.
Honestly, despite his later triumphs, Lee peaked right out of the gate– but that’s just a testament to an incredible piece of film making.
–Eli from Readers’ Services
Whit Stillman’s films are perfect for people who like character-driven, dialogue-packed films. Set in New York City in the world of privileged college youth (plus one middle-class gentleman) during the debutante season, the film documents their parties and private conversations, their romantic crushes and social commentary. It’s the first in an exceptional trilogy – don’t miss Stillman’s follow-ups: The Last Days of Disco and Barcelona.
–Tricia from Collection Development
Not too shabby, Guardian! With Destiny 2, Bungie continues to inch towards delivering on the promise and hype of vanilla Destiny. Quality of life changes abound, and there’s more to do than ever before. For better or worse, nothing has fundamentally changed in the sequel, but joining up with two strike buddies and absolutely wrecking some generic alien baddies has never been as fun.
–Ian from Info Services
The score to the epic, anime classic about biker gangs, psychokinetic powers, political corruption, and human experimentation, set in the near future, dystopian Neo-Tokyo, is as unique and energetic as the movie it accompanies. The Japanese musical collective Geinoh Yamashirogumi combines traditional musical elements of Southeast Asia such as the chromatic bamboo percussion of Indonesian Gamelan, and the intense, rhythmic chanting of Japanese Noh theater with the pulsating synthesizers of 80s techno and hints of prog rock to create a texturally unique soundscape. The score can be enjoyed as a solo piece without seeing the movie, but the pair complement each other so much that it’s best to be able to conjure up the striking imagery of Neo-Tokyo while listening.
On a side note, if this score isn’t featured in some way in the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics (quite astutely predicted by the film, even if we didn’t have to suffer added World Wars and nuclear fallouts), I will be sorely disappointed.
–Kevin from Collections Development
Building on 2012′s masterpiece, Monolith of Inhumanity, Cattle Decapitation further set themselves apart from competing tech-death-grind bands with this effort. Punishingly heavy, machine precise, and quite sardonic, The Anthropocene Extinction combines the flagship characteristics of the death metal and grindcore genres and creates a cohesive auditory assault, lead by Travis Ryan’s trademark combination of vocal styles that run the entire spectrum of extreme vocalizations, including a unique melodic shrill (think Lord of the Rings goblin meets an operatic banshee).
Ryan’s vocals will go down in extreme metal history as one of the greats. I would not say this is the record for you if you’ve only just begun to dabble in extreme metal; it takes some digestion at times, even for the seasoned listener. But one thing is for sure: you have heard nothing like this.
–Joel from Tech Services
In my opinion, The Killers’ Wonderful Wonderful is the jewel in 2017′s musical desert wasteland, which seems appropriate as the band hails from Las Vegas, Nevada. I’ve held The Killers’ 2006 album Sam’s Town in high esteem for years, and this new release would be a serious contender in a prizefight, no doubt. Along with combining elements of Brandon Flower’s solo work, Flamingo and The Desired Effect, the prototypical Killers’ synth laden jams will leave you feeling wonderful wonderful.
–Ilka from Readers’ Services
So that’s it from us for November! What media did you love this month?