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Davis, California

Sunday, July 21, 2024

Culture Corner with Caroline Rutten

The Arts Desks’ weekly picks for movies, books, music and television shows

Movie: “The Lighthouse”

In true Arts Desk fashion, a group of us spontaneously decided to see “The Lighthouse” at the Varsity Theater this past weekend. And, in true A24 fashion, the piece fits the mold of every film nerd’s perfect movie: black and white, framed in a boxy ratio and stellar performances from Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson. The film is haunting yet whimsical, combining allusions to 1800s sailor folklore and Greek mythology. The scene is set on two lighthouse keepers amidst a tremulous storm off the coast of Maine. The film dives deeper into their respective drifts into insanity, which includes sirens and the allure of the lighthouse itself. Their masculinities are tested and the lines between what is real and what is fantasy soon begin to blur.  

Book: “The Little Prince”

Yes, I chose a children’s book, but hear me out. It has come to my attention that, while most people know the basic premise of this classic children’s book, few remember its main themes or even read it in its entirety. What those readers have missed out on is an intergalactic prince learning how to truly love what is close to him and how to grapple with the changing tides of growing up. Within the context of an enchanting plot, this book covers topics that I need to be reminded of in the wake of my college graduation.  

Album: “It Might Be Time” by Tame Impala

Tame Impala will always be one of my favorite bands of all time, and the release of this single in anticipation of their upcoming album drop increases my excitement. The song follows the similar electronic, borderline-pop motif from their previous album “Currents” — an emphasis on repetitive beat and heavy keyboard. And while I personally crave grimey sounds similar to “Innerspeaker,” that is not to say “It Might Be Time” is not good. The uniqueness and composition of sound produced by Kevin Parker is still alive and well, and I anticipate such will continue into the release of their new album.  

TV Show: “Big Mouth” Season 3

I am continuously surprised by the constant flow of relevant subject matter and characters that are produced by “Big Mouth” creators Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin and Jennifer Flackett. When I think that this Netflix program has exhausted everything encompassing puberty’s awkward years, they find another dimension that I must have suppressed in my memory. In this season, sexuality is explored in a variety of forms (no spoilers here) and even features a segment on the changing bodies of older women. As evident through the previous seasons, there is no topic the series shies away from, to our collective embarrassment and laughter. “Big Mouth” is available to stream on Netflix.

Written by: Caroline Rutten — arts@theaggie.org


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