The Oberlin Review

New Netflix Thriller Chambers Highlights Native Identities

Jackie Brant, Opinions Editor

May 10, 2019

 Chambers, an innovative new Netflix horror series, premiered last month and has received mixed reviews amidst a growing genre of horror-themed TV shows. The storyline follows the main character Sasha, a Native teenager living in Arizona who receives a heart transplant from a girl named Becky (Lillya Scarlett Reid). After Sasha connects with Becky’s parents, mysterious and dangerous events begin to unfold surrounding Becky’s death, and Sasha attempts to uncover what really happened to Becky. The show features breakout star Sivan Alyra Rose, supported by numerous veteran actors including Uma Thurman and Tony Goldwyn. Chambers has been criticized for being too slow and incorporating too many elements of classic ...

Alum Film CRSHD Screens at Apollo Theater Next Thursday

Carson Dowhan, Senior Staff Writer

May 3, 2019

Emily Cohn, OC ’17, will present a free screening of her first full-length film, CRSHD, at the Apollo Theatre at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 9. The event is sponsored by the Cinema Studies department and Alumni Office. CRSHD’s world premiere was April 30 at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York; the film’s portrayal of female sexuality was lauded by festival representatives. Though CRSHD is Cohn’s longest project yet, clocking in at 80 minutes, Cohn has years of experience creating short films. The film speaks to a younger, millennial audience through its awkward college humor and social media antics, complete with sequences of fantasy and engaging physical interpretations of the apps Instagram, Tinder, and Facebook...

“Avengers: Endgame” Rocks the Box Office

Kabir Karamchandani, Staff Writer

May 3, 2019

Editor’s Note: This review contains major spoilers for the movie Avengers: Endgame. With a $1.5 billion worldwide gross in its opening week, Avengers: Endgame is undeniably one of the biggest cinematic events in recent history — and perhaps the biggest of all time.  To start, I have to confess to being a Marvel fan. I have watched every movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and am deeply invested in the characters and world. As the culminating moment of the series, Endgame has little in the way of emotional stakes for viewers new to the franchise, but excels as a finale. It has no small amount of crowd-pleasing moments and spotlights several touching new developments in character relationships establishe...

Review: “Game of Thrones” Premieres Eighth Season

Kabir Karamchandani, Staff Writer

April 19, 2019

Editor’s Note: This review contains spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 1.  The much-awaited eighth and final season of Game of Thrones started strong this week with a character-driven episode that set up the epic battles soon to come. While the episode was light on action, it had plenty of feel-good moments, finally bringing all the characters we love back together as Jon Snow returned to his hometown of Winterfell, with his new lover-aunt Daenerys in tow. The episode also stepped up the horror quotient, taking the visceral imagery of the White Walkers to new, gruesome levels. In the early seasons, Game of Thrones was largely character-driven, focusing on developing a vast array of protagonists and following thei...

“Ana La Habibi” Explores Arab Identity in America

“Ana La Habibi” Explores Arab Identity in America

April 19, 2019

Two men stand around a record player, listening to the dreamy voice of Lebanese icon Fairuz. One man leans back on the couch, struck by nostalgia. He reminisces about when his mom played the song every day before school. He used to hate it, but now he smiles when it comes on.  “Ana la Habibi,” Fairuz sings, “I belong to my love.” This scene from Ana la Habibi, which premiered last Tuesday, reveals the inspiration behind its title. College senior Jad Kaiss, who wrote and directed this pla...

Jason Dorwart, Director of “Body of Bourne”

Jason Dorwart, Director of “Body of Bourne”

April 12, 2019

Visiting Assistant Professor of Theater Jason Dorwart specializes in theater history, dramaturgy, disability studies, film theory, and improv. He served on the Board of Directors and as an acting company member of the award-winning Phamaly Theatre Company in Denver, which exclusively features actors with disabilities. Dorwart earned his Ph.D. at UC San Diego, where he helped develop and perform in the Workplace Interactive Theatre, a touring diversity initiative which promotes discussions about hi...

DC Turns out Delightful Superhero Comedy with “Shazam!”

Kabir Karamchandani, Staff Writer

April 12, 2019

The latest Warner Bros.’ DC Comics film, Shazam!, is a pleasant deviation from their usual darker fare such as Suicide Squad and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The cheerful, funny Shazam! is the first DC Extended Universe film to go beyond its role as a superhero action movie — it also serves as a coming-of-age story with strong family themes. While the action and visual effects are a little lacking at times, an excellent script with relatable characters, genuine emotional stakes, and spot-on humor more than makes up for it, making Shazam! my personal favorite of the DC films so far. Stars Asher Angel and Zachary Levi do an excellent job playing the protagonist, Billy Batson, and his superhero alter-ego, Shaza...

Short Film Documents Government Shutdown in Oberlin

Short Film Documents Government Shutdown in Oberlin

April 5, 2019

In just 12 minutes, the documentary film 35 Days explores the challenges presented by the government shutdown this past January and the Oberlin community’s response. The film shows the perspectives of local air traffic controllers who worked without pay and Oberlin Community Services staff who contended with food insecurity, which was exacerbated in the shutdown’s wake. It also recounts how businesses like Slow Train Cafe and IGA supported their fellow community members through this challeng...

Bringing Gothic Thrillers Back, “Us” Breaks Box Office

Ananya Gupta, Managing Editor

April 5, 2019

Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers of the movie Us.  Jordan Peele’s Us is a gripping horror film that dabbles in a variety of uncanny, terror-inducing devices — doppelgängers, scientific experiments gone wrong, and darkly creative scenes of pursuit, stabbing, and bloodshed.  The plot follows Adelaide Wilson, played phenomenally by Lupita Nyong’o, as she navigates the childhood trauma of finding a little girl who looks exactly like her in an abandoned mirror maze. Returning to the location where this took place — this time as an adult with a family of her own — she experiences a sense of foreboding that her doppelgänger is coming to get her. Adelaide’s fears come true, when not just ...

“Songs From My Mother’s Seashore” Celebrates Black Trans Woman Love

“Songs From My Mother’s Seashore” Celebrates Black Trans Woman Love

April 5, 2019

A woman in white and gold walks on stage, caressing a framed portrait of a Black woman shrouded in white cloth who stares defiantly at the viewer with one breast exposed. Over the sound of gentle waves in the distance, she wonders aloud, “If God were to stand before us, would we recognize her magnificence?” Songs from My Mother’s Seashore is an original work written and directed by College senior Nani Borges, who also plays the lead in the show: a character with Borges’ name who repres...

Student Production “Same Same” Premieres at Cat in the Cream

Student Production “Same Same” Premieres at Cat in the Cream

March 15, 2019

This weekend College senior Hanna Shykind will debut an intimate and honest presentation of her experiences growing up in the Middle East. Her original cabaret performance Same Same tells a story of adaptation and how Shykind coped with loneliness in a foreign place. Although Shykind’s circumstances were atypical, she creates a universal story. “The show is a cabaret about my experiences living in Qatar from age 12 to 16,” she said. “It’s about dealing with change and combating loneli...

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