Mosaic / Reviews / January 18, 2017

Top Albums and Films of 2016

 

The Professional Opinion

 

Professor Nikki Malley

“Blackstar” by David Bowie

“Even if this album hadn’t been made during the final months of Bowie’s life, and even if the album’s power hadn’t been multiplied by the fact that Bowie died only a few days after the release, this album would still be my favorite album of 2016. Bowie’s ability to innovate (lyrically, texturally, melodically) was nothing short of amazing on this record. The stunning collaborative performances with five of the most exciting jazz artists on the scene — Donny McCaslin, Ben Monder, Jason Lindner, Mark Giuliana and Tim LeFebvre — showed us, again, just how sublime it can be when an artist isn’t confined within the (artificial) boundaries of genre and style. This album breaks my heart in the best way possible.”

 

 

Professor Daniel Wack

“Hail, Caesar!” directed by Joel and Ethan Coen

“I am happy to speak up for the Coen brothers’ “Hail, Caesar!,” which many people seemed to find slight or disjointed when it was released last spring but was the movie this year that I both enjoyed the most in the theater and have thought about the most since I saw it. “Hail, Caesar!” takes the form of a Catholic parable, in a sort-of spiritual follow-up to their great Jewish parable, “A Serious Man,” but it’s a religious parable that takes place on the back stages of an imagined Hollywood studio in 1951. The Coens use the occasion to create a series of sequences that typify bygone movie genres, including the singing cowboy movie and the Esther Williams-style water ballet, and stage a conversation about the value of movies between George Clooney’s kidnapped movie star and a roomful of Communist screenwriters. It is, somewhat improbably, a meditation at once on both the nature of Christ’s example and, equally, the value of popular movies and made me laugh harder than any other movie I saw this year.”

 

Hear it straight from the students

 

Mia Butler ‘17

Album: “Coloring Book”- Chance the Rapper

“Chance focuses on all of the real things: race, politics, culture, All of the things besides shaking your booty and making some money.”

 

 

Elizabeth Bockrath ‘17

Album: “Death of a Bachelor” – Panic! at the Disco

“I’ve always loved Panic! at the Disco, since “A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out.” I love that Brendon Urie has taken over the project. He’s done well!”

 

 

Liam Wholihamn ‘20

Album: “How to be a Human Being” – Glass Animals

“All of the songs are great to adapt to jazz. It takes what the band has done before and creates something new. I really enjoyed it.”

 

 

 

Charles Beckam ‘17

“Zootopia”

“Zootopia” was a great movie and one of the best younger movies I’ve seen in a long time. I like that they are coming out with so many serious movies like that.”

 

Jose Guevara ‘17

“Moana”

“I loved to see them showcase a princess of color that doesn’t have to involve the regular romances. Moana was a great movie.”

 

 

 

Stephanie Nikitenko ‘17

“Alice: Through the Looking Glass”

“They did a great job of connecting to the original story and giving Alice a reason to come back. The makeup and costumes were as great as the first.”

 

 

 

Mitch Prentice, Mosaic Editor
Mitch Prentice is a senior at Knox majoring in creative writing and minoring in journalism. He volunteered for TKS his sophomore and junior year, this is his first year on staff and Mitch is aiming toward diversifying the section as a whole. He has interned alongside Greg Kot at the Chicago Tribune and runs his own website.

Tags:  2016 Albums Dan Wack films nikki malley Year in Review

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