The Oberlin Review

“The Mandalorian” Proves Promising for Disney+

Kabir Karamchandani, Staff Writer

December 13, 2019

The Mandalorian, a Star Wars space-western, recently premiered on the new streaming platform Disney+. So far, five out of eight episodes have been released, and the series is easily the biggest attraction on the still-new site. An engaging show, The Mandalorian has lived up to the hype so far and is a good sign for the original Disney content to come. While obviously set in the Star Wars universe, The Mandalorian has been largely independent of the movies’ story. Set between episodes six and seven, the show follows the eponymous Mandalorian, a stoic bounty hunter played by Pedro Pascal, as he completes a set of jobs. Pascal’s performance encapsulates the broody western perfectly. We see little of his emotions...

Cyril Amanfo, “Equilibrium” Student Playwright, Director

Cyril Amanfo, “Equilibrium” Student Playwright, Director

December 6, 2019

College second-year Cyril Amanfo is a Neuroscience and Theater double major from Lowell, MA. Last year, Amanfo was the assistant stage manager for Professor of Theater and Africana Studies Caroline Jackson Smith’s staging of BJ Tindal’s, OC ’16 play, What We Look Like, an experience that inspired Amanfo to try his hand at putting on a play. Amanfo is writing, directing, and acting in the resulting show alongside a cast of nine and design team of seven. The result is a bold fusion of dance ...

“Urinetown” Takes a Comedic Look at Dark Societal Issues

“Urinetown” Takes a Comedic Look at Dark Societal Issues

December 6, 2019

Described in the director’s note as “an eerily relevant takedown of Capitalism’s worst case scenario,” the Oberlin Theater Department’s production of Urinetown, a darkly satirical 2001 musical, is still uncomfortably applicable to our political and social climate today. The production deals with a variety of heavy themes, including the dangers of capitalism run amok, as well as racially-charged violence, climate change, and more.  Yet the show itself is anything but dreary — filled...

Dystopian Play “The Size of a Fist” Explores the End of the World

Dystopian Play “The Size of a Fist” Explores the End of the World

November 22, 2019

In the dark of Kander Theater, Bee, an adolescent girl, sits on the floor, trying to draw a tree. Behind her, a ladder in the back of the room stretches from floor to ceiling, making the audience feel as if they too are underground. Bee’s father peers at his daughter’s drawing, perplexed and disappointed by its inaccuracies. Bee explains she’s never seen real trees to reference. Deep in a small ’50s bunker, designed to weather nuclear fallout, the two characters in The Size of a Fist li...

All-Female “Waiting for Godot” Cancellation Sparks “Collective Rage”

Aly Fogel, Arts & Culture Editor

November 15, 2019

 Two weeks ago, communication with Samuel Beckett’s estate halted Oberlin’s production of Waiting for Godot due to its all-female cast. The script calls for a cast of five men, and Samuel Beckett’s estate has a long history of putting an end to female versions of Godot, often taking theaters to court over the issue.  Months before the production was cancelled, designers had begun working on the show — the set design had been finalized, costumes were set, and the director had developed his concept. However, when auditions came around, only two men expressed interest, and the Godot team cast the best actors for the roles — all of whom were female. Due to complications with the Beckett estate, the same c...

Student-Written Play MOIRAI Reimagines Greek Mythology

Casey Troost, Staff Writer

November 15, 2019

MOIRAI, College fourth-year Giulia Chiappetta’s debut as a playwright, follows the classical Greek Fates Atropos, Clotho, and Lachesis as they seek to reclaim Atropos’ scissors from a thief in the modern world. The project is Chiappetta’s playwriting debut, and was directed by College fourth-year Maddie Henke. MOIRAI is a dark comedy, exploring themes of mortality, sisterhood, and traveling. The production is being put on with support from the Oberlin Student Theater Association, and is entirely student-run.  MOIRAI reflects Chiappetta’s interest in humanizing legendary mythological characters. “I was interested in expanding and giving these staple characters who are part of this canon … a voice,” sh...

“The Lighthouse”: A Romp of Madness and Stylistic Flair

Christo Hays, Production Editor

November 8, 2019

 Amid the unending maelstrom of sequels, reboots, and spinoffs that define today’s new releases, watching The Lighthouse feels like a breath of fresh, salty, ocean air. The film requires no lore research, no prequel catch-up, not even an understanding of pop culture references. What you see is what you get: 110 minutes of black-and-white madness, the tale of two men mentally unraveling while trapped on an austere island, tending a lighthouse in a tempestuous storm. The film, directed by Robert Eggers, opens with Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson), a young man new to lighthouse keeping, arriving on an unnamed lighthouse island off the coast of New England during the 1890s. Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe) — a wild-...

Nuanced Adaptation of “All This Intimacy” Opens in Kander

Nuanced Adaptation of “All This Intimacy” Opens in Kander

October 11, 2019

A poet who commits a string of infidelities, conceiving three children with three different women in the process, is certainly an interesting set-up for a student performance. Oberlin’s production of Rajiv Joseph’s play, All This Intimacy follows protagonist Ty Greene through the above events with a re-imagined tone. Brought to life by fantastic performances under the direction of College fourth-year Abigail Bowman, the play is a fundamentally human drama, full of genuine and flawed characters. All This Inti...

“Joker” Brings Controversy, Brutality to Box Office

Kushagra Kar, Production Editor

October 11, 2019

Be warned, Joker is no laughing matter. The brutally honest truth of the matter is that I am horrified. Through every moment of the film and each subsequent second since I walked out of the Apollo Theatre, a deep discomfort has pervaded my mind.  To say that Todd Phillips’ 2019 psychological thriller Joker is a departure from conventional comic book movies would be an understatement. I’ve felt this shock before, with James Mangold’s 2017 Logan, which was a breath of fresh, unnervingly profane air. The film was rich in great character moments to supplement the enjoyable superhero beats. Yet, Joker does something far more impressive — blurring the conventional lines that define the genre of comic book films. J...

Art and Gender: Behind Japanese Noh Theater

Carson Dowhan, Senior Staff Writer

September 27, 2019

Last weekend, Oberlin students and residents had the chance to experience Japanese Noh theater, presented by Hisa and Hikaru Uzawa, during the mother-daughter duo’s college campus tour. On Wednesday, they also led a Noh music workshop that taught chant notation, breathing, and posture. Developed by Zeami Motokiyo, Noh theater has been around since the late 14th century. Noh stages, constructed with Japanese cypress, are tailored specifically to the needs of the play. A bridge called a hasigakari protrudes from stage right, where actors walk onstage through a curtain called an agemaku. There are three pine trees in front of the hasigakari which lead to the butai, the main stage, designed to give a sense o...

“Hustlers” Promises Radical Feminism, Delivers Tired Tropes

Lyala Khan

September 27, 2019

 I must have watched the trailer for Hustlers at least 10 times. I’ve been waiting for it’s release since the day it was announced, and I even showed up to the theater early to get the best seats. The first 30 minutes did not disappoint, delivering one of the sexiest movie openings I have ever seen. Jennifer Lopez first appears on the screen performing a confident, sexy, and unbeatable dance as Ramona, the star of the strip club. This five-minute showcase proves that J. Lo’s Ramona exudes power, and she knows it.  Another iconic moment follows this stunning entry when the two main characters, Ramona and Destiny, played by Constance Wu, meet on the roof. Ramona is wrapped in a beautiful fur and smoking a cigare...

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