The Oberlin Review

Afrikan Heritage House faculty and residents hold an Umoja meeting over Zoom, as shown in the documentary

“Boxes Will Be Provided” Challenges Oberlin to Do More For Black Students

July 9, 2020

When the College moved to remote learning this past spring, students enrolled in the Historic and Contemporary Debates in African American Education course knew they had to document the experience. Their documentary Boxes Will Be Provided felt like a necessary step in recording the impact of COVID-19 on Black Obies. Director and editor DaQuan Williams, OC ’20, had very little experience in film-making prior to embarking on this project, which clocks in at roughly two and a half hours and invol...

Frank Dawson.

Frank Dawson, “Agents of Change” Director

November 22, 2019

Frank Dawson is the current dean of the Center for Media and Design at Santa Monica College. He’s had a long career in entertainment, working as an associate programming executive at CBS and a production executive at Universal’s Television Division. Dawson earned his Bachelor’s in Sociology from Cornell University and his Master of Science degree in Television and Radio from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School. During his time at Cornell, Dawson and other student activists made national ne...

“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-...

Looking Beneath the Laughs in Coming-of-Age Comedy “Good Boys”

Casey Troost

September 6, 2019

 Based on the trailer, it’s easy to compare Good Boys to previous action-comedies like Superbad, Bad Teacher, Year One, and Bad Grandpa. However, while the humor of comparable movies is often delivered by adults or teenagers, Good Boys shifts the focus to three youthful and inexperienced pre-teens. In Good Boys, most of the comedy comes from scenes in which the three naive protagonists, called “The Bean Bag Boys,” misinterpret the adult content they come into contact with. For example, Thor, one of the three Bean Bag Boys, mistakes a BDSM mask in his parent’s closet for protective wear and puts it on to answer the door for a stranger. While I enjoyed the comedy in the film, I question whether I should have...

Final “How to Train Your Dragon” Installment Warms Hearts

Kabir Karamchandani, Staff Writer

March 1, 2019

Editor’s note: This review contains major spoilers for How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. The How To Train Your Dragon franchise has always held a special place in my heart, largely because it’s very loosely based on Cressida Cowell’s book series, which I loved as a child. With stunning visuals, one of my all-time favorite scores, and unusually mature themes for children’s movies, How To Train Your Dragon is undoubtedly one of the best animated series of the last decade. Although the latest installment, The Hidden World, pales slightly in comparison to its predecessors, it is still a thoroughly enjoyable movie and provides an emotional end to a fantastic trilogy. A large part of the franchise’s a...

Andrew V. Uroskie

Andrew V. Uroskie, Filmmaker and Professor

November 30, 2018

Andrew V. Uroskie is an associate professor of art and the director of graduate studies in Art History and Criticism at Stony Brook University in New York. Uroskie specializes in late modern and contemporary art with a focus on postwar and contemporary artists that work in durational mediums such as video, film, and sound. On Nov. 29, he presented a lecture at Oberlin titled “Beyond The Whole Earth?: David OReilly’s Everything (2017),” about how OReilly’s work traverses the traditionally se...

“Expanded Cinema” Film Screening Challenges Students to Think Beyond Two — Or Perhaps Three — Dimensions

Josh Spielman

September 28, 2018

The 3D movie fad has declined in the past few years, but it wasn’t long ago that Hollywood studios were aggressively marketing their summer blockbusters in three dimensions. Multiplexes gleefully cashed in on audiences willing to fork over nearly $20 for the sensory spectacles. The cynical commercialism of, say, a Transformers film has since blemished 3D film technology. Now, if I’m putting on a pair of novelty glasses in a darkened theater, at best, I’ve wasted money on an overblown, in-your-face version of a decent movie. Right? Wrong. Take two films shown Monday night in the Clarence Ward Art Building, in the second installment of the Cinema Artists’ Cinema 16mm film series. This week’s event, “Exp...

Vikander Falls Short as Lara Croft in “Tomb Raider”

Ananya Gupta, Arts & Culture Editor

April 6, 2018

Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers for the Tomb Raider series. After playing Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary and watching Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, it’s safe to say that I’m a superfan of the gun-toting, knife-wielding, acrobatic badass Lara Croft. Tomb Raider, starring Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft and directed by Roar Uthaug, unfortunately reduced this iconic, legendary woman into a one-dimensional character, with a storyline several notches below even the amateur Adobe Flash games one can excavate online today. While several versions of Lara Croft’s backstory exist, all franchises tell the story of an English woman who is trained to be an archaeolog...

Matt Blankinship, OC ’17, fifth-year Thanisa Durongkaveroj, and Anna Treidler, OC ’17, spoke about their experiences in Thailand at a screening of their documentaries about Thailand’s education system Saturday night.

Peanut Sauce Film Project Explores Thai Education System

September 8, 2017

The Peanut Sauce Project 2560, a documentary project with an eye toward the education system in Thailand and the marginalized groups within it, presented three documentaries in the Birenbaum Innovation and Performance Space Friday night. The project was organized by double-degree fifth-year Thanisa Durongkaveroj, who was joined by Matt Blankinship, OC ’17, Anna Treidler, OC ’17, and collaborator Bitong Suchritt. Durongkaveroj, Blankinship, and Treidler were all in attendance at Friday night’s ...

“Raw” Offers Potent Commentary on Sexuality, Sisterhood

Christian Bolles, Columnist

April 14, 2017

Editor’s Note: This review contains spoilers and mentions of violence, sexual assault, nausea and trauma inflicted on both humans and animals. When French writer-director Julia Ducournau’s feature-length debut Raw made rounds at film festivals worldwide, paramedics became an occasional fixture of the proceedings as audience members either fainted or left the theater — some without returning, others to empty their stomachs in the nearest bathroom. Despite being produced on a tight budget and given limited theatrical distribution, these incidents have brought the film a grotesquely alluring reputation since its release a few weeks ago. Historically, other films have garnered similar reactions — The Exorcist is...

Jenkins’ Accessible “Moonlight” Showcases Stellar Performances

Christian Bolles, Columnist

February 10, 2017

If you haven’t seen Moonlight on the grounds of its tough subject matter, you may not be alone, but you certainly should reconsider. Writer/director Barry Jenkins’ sophomore feature takes a Boyhood-esque trip straight to the heart of human pathos, spinning its tale of a man named Chiron through intimate close-ups that reflect the personal sting of his unfortunate circumstances. Moonlight has been — and will continue to be — hailed by the industry and viewers as “important” due to the sheer rarity of the subject in the medium of film: a gay Black man. But historically, “important” is a reductive and alienating label that pushes works of social significance into a dusty altar in the corner while safer, m...

‘God’s Not Dead 2’ a Slice of Trump-Era Propaganda

Christian Bolles, Arts Editor

April 15, 2016

“The most basic human right of all is the right to know Jesus,” says Director Harold Cronk through one of his signature mouthpiece characters in his latest film, God’s Not Dead 2, produced by the Christian company Pure Flix. Ideas like these have been voiced in the U.S. ever since the words “separation between church and state” were first contrived, fermenting in communities whose refusal to accept progressive mindsets often ends in hateful contempt. Some of the greatest problems arise, however, when popular culture gives these groups enough affirmation to bring hateful ideas supported by a twisted conception of faith to mainstream American society. Donald Trump is the most recent example of entertainment gone hor...

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