The Arts Desk’s weekly picks for television, movies, novels, music
This Alan Yang and Matt Hubbard creation stars the incredible Maya Rudolph and Fred Armisen and follows June and Oscar — a plain, seemingly content married couple who navigate the afterlife together. What the New Yorker calls a “big hearted satire,” this show explores thought-provoking themes of love, hope and the time old question: what’s next? The beautiful and calm cinematography pairs well with the quirky charm of the SNL alums. While the story may not always take the turn you want it to, it takes the turn it needs to. All eight episodes are available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.
Movie: Empire Records
This 1995 Allan Moyle-directed teen classic features a young Liv Tyler and Renée Zellweger. Along with their edgy, quirky coworker friends and their father figure of a store manager, the plot tackles young love, capitalism, teenage angst and pressures (as well as the result of those pressures), all with a kickin’ soundtrack. The movie serves up a healthy dose of nostalgia and will leave you wanting to head down to your local record store. “Empire Records” is worthy of a rewatch on a Sunday afternoon.
Novel: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
Gail Honeyman’s debut novel centers on the socially awkward Eleanor, a 29-year-old with a degree in Classics from Glasgow, who lives an ordered, but lonely life with only her cat and two bottles of vodka from the corner market to keep her company. This page-turner will leave you feeling both embarrassed and in awe of Eleanor as she embarks on a journey to find love. The novel explores themes of isolation, loneliness and mental health in an intriguing way and will keep you invested right up to the final page.
Bad Bunny’s long-awaited debut album is undoubtedly one of the greatest albums of 2019, although it was released in December of last year. This genre-defying album proves Bad Bunny is a Latin music chameleon; each song is a hit in its own right, but together, the songs create a work that seamlessly blends trap, R&B, reggaetón, bachata and dembow. The album, surprisingly, doesn’t feature a posse track like the ones that helped skyrocket Bad Bunny to fame, but does feature the Dominican Republic dembow king El Alfa, Latin superstar Ricky Martin, Diplo and Drake. This album will find you itching to press replay before the last song is even over.
Written by: Liz Jacobson — firstname.lastname@example.org