The Florida Project

Film by Sean Baker

 

The latest film from the master of micro-budgeted storytelling, director Sean Baker, following his 2012 debut Starlet and 2015 indie darling Tangerine, The Florida Project premiered at the Cannes Film Festival to universal acclaim. A continuation of Baker’s intimate and unpatronizing examination of the lives most Americans might not think about, The Florida Project tells the story of a precocious six year old troublemaker named Moonee (charismatic newcomer Brooklynn Prince), who lives with her mother Halley (Bria Vinaite) in a community of extended-stay motel guests on the edge of poverty, in the shadows of Disney World. The film, which also stars Caleb Landry Jones and an understated William Dafoe in one of the best performances of his career, is an intelligent and unflinching look at life on the margins, told from a child’s eye view. (A24)

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I Love You Like A Brother

Album by Alex Lahey

 

Fresh off the release of her recent single, “Lotto In Reverse,” Alex Lahey is back with “I Haven’t Been Taking Care Of Myself,” another standout from her forthcoming debut album, I Love You Like A Brother (Dead Oceans). “I Haven’t Been Taking Care Of Myself” sees Lahey honing in on her ability to layer catchy pop melodies over unkempt guitars, placing her arresting vocals front and center. The album’s songs traverse the everyday themes of family, heartbreak and identity, yet Lahey unpacks these universal themes with dry humor and refreshing authenticity.

“A lot of the songs on the record are about the relationships that we engaging in with other people. ‘I Haven’t Been Taking Care Of Myself’ deviates from that in that it’s about the relationship that we have with ourselves and how that is reflected in the way we bring others into our lives. If you feel shit about yourself, you’re generally going to get off on the wrong foot with someone else.”

›› ISSUE Feature: Live performance and interview with Alex Lahey

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Dina

Film by Antonio Santini and Dan Sickles

 

Directors Antonio Santini and Dan Sickles, who previously collaborated on 2014’s Mala Mala, return with Dina, a memorable and moving documentary filmed like a rom-com that premiered this year at Sundance, winning the Grand Jury Prize. Dina explores the relationship and impending nuptials of Dina Buno and Scott Levin, two middle-aged adults on the Autism spectrum. The film captures the excitement and anxiety of the upcoming wedding with grace and sensitivity, making this unconventional love story both fascinating and eye-opening. Dina, the vivacious protagonist who has overcome a myriad of personal and romantic obstacles in search of her happy ending, is an unstoppable force of nature and a joy to watch. (The Orchard)

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Three Futures

Album by TORRES

 

“I want it to feel like we just showed up to a party in a Masonic temple, but everybody who used to live here died a thousand years ago,” says musician TORRES of her third and newest album Three Futures. The musical pseudonym of singer, songwriter and instrumentalist Mackenzie Scott, TORRES has opened for the likes of Brandi Carlile, Sharon Van Etten, Hamilton Leithauser and Tegan and Sara since the release of her eponymous debut album in 2013. Three Futures follows her 2015 critically acclaimed album Sprinter, and sees Scott in the role of co-producer guiding her sound towards a cymbals-and-acoustics-free territory. Co-produced by longtime collaborator and producer Rob Ellis, known best for his work with PJ Harvey, Three Futures features TORRES’ most unapologetic lyrics yet, covering themes of personal identity and homosexuality. Her provocative music video for album track “Skim” features lesbian fashion powerhouse and former Creative Director of J.Crew, Jenna Lyons.

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Lucky

Film by John Carroll Lynch

 

Starring acting legend Harry Dean Stanton (Paris, Texas; Alien) in his final role, with a supporting cast including filmmaker David Lynch, Lucky follows a 90-year-old atheist’s spiritual journey to enlightenment in a desert town inhabited by eccentric characters. The directorial debut of actor John Carroll Lynch, Lucky is an homage to life itself as well as to Stanton’s career, spanning over 50 years. Other actors include Ron Livingston, Ed Begley and Tom Skerritt in the film meditation on mortality, isolation, spirituality and human connection. (Magnolia Pictures)

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Peace

Book by Jim Marshall

 

Award-winning photographer Jim Marshall documented the life of the peace symbol across 1960s America as it transformed from a specific anti-nuclear meaning as the CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) symbol into an internationally-recognized emblem for peace. Jim Marshall: Peace documents these previously unseen photographs, capturing the peace symbol’s spread throughout New York subways, on the jackets of hippies and at West Coast peace rallies. Accompanying text is by author and music journalist Peter Doggett, with a foreword by folk singer and activist Joan Benz and an afterword by renowned artist for change, Shepard Fairey. (Reel Art Press)

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Soul of a Nation:
Art in the Age of Black Power

Book by Tate Modern

 

2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the term “black power,” first voiced by student activist Stokely Carmichael. It also marks 50 years since the US Supreme Court repealed the prohibition of interracial marriage. In celebration of these artists and the progress of civil rights, Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power brings to light previously neglected histories of 20th century black artists. Published by D.A.P and London’s Tate Modern, the book catalogues Tate’s current Soul of a Nation exhibit, featuring artists such as Sam Gilliam, Faith Ringgold, Melvin Edwards and Betye Saar. In the decades of crucial change from 1963 to 1983, young black artists confronted the complex task of making art that stood as original, formal and complex with the added component of reflecting their ongoing concerns and experience with America’s civil rights. Soul of a Nation expounds on these histories, offering extensive artist profiles while incorporating broader socio-historical narratives including art history, black feminism and AfriCOBRA. Text contributions include editors Mark Godfrey and Zoe Whitely, filmmaker Linda Goode Bryant and artists Jae Jarrell, Wadsworth Jarrell and Samella Lewis. (D.A.P./Tate)

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Stranger in the Alps

Album by Phoebe Bridges

 

Stranger in the Alps is musician Phoebe Bridges’s debut album, featuring haunting, personal tracks. Bridgers first came to attention in 2015 with the release of her three song single, “Killer,” produced by musician Ryan Adams. Since then, she has toured with Julien Baker, Conor Oberst and Adams and has opened for musicians such as Cat Power. Bridgers released two singles from Stranger in the Alps earlier this year, which became favorites with critics including NPR and Billboard. According to Bridgers, she aims to be the same person in her music as in real life, citing lost idols, well-known pop songs and personal experiences within her lyrics. (Dead Oceans)

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