Payne’s Picks

By Sarah Payne

Equals – July 15th Forbidden love seems to have become Kristen Stewart’s niché. In Equals, she stars opposite Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road) in a futuristic society where emotions are forbidden. And for some reason, people are only allowed to wear white. But inevitably, Stewart and Hoult’s characters fall in love and must mask their feelings or risk punishment. Director Drake Dormus told ET, “We carefully constructed the shoot so that the bathroom scene was the first time they really touched in the film and really touched when we were shooting…What happens in the film was really happening on set.” I don’t doubt the actors’ chemistry, but I wonder if the film will have any more substance beyond the two of them trying not to touch each other. Another interesting note about this film is that it’s already streaming on DirectTV and will have only a limited release in theaters—a sign of changing times for entertainment.

Ghostbusters – July 15th I must admit that the original Ghostbusters was way before my time (I was a late 80s baby!). But I’m well aware of its pop culture significance and I’m excited to see four incredibly talented female comedians in this reboot. Also, the fact that so many people are against the cast being all female just makes me want to support the film even more! I mean, how can you go wrong with Melissa McCarthy and three of the funniest Saturday Night Live stars—Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones?


The Nice Guys When we talk about chemistry on screen, it’s important to remember that it applies to more than just romantic relationships. Case in point—Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe as the incompetent but lovable detective duo in The Nice Guys. Each is somewhat pathetic, in an endearing way. Gosling’s character is a single dad with a mild drinking problem, who makes his money scamming the elderly. Crowe is a sad divorcé who doesn’t drink at all, but spends his days throwing punches for cash. Angourie Rice, the 15-year-old Australian actress who plays Gosling’s daughter is definitely a rising star. Set in the 1970s, the movie is just fun all around because it really feels retro. I saw the movie with my mom, who made an interesting argument that Russell Crowe is only good when he’s dressing in costume. When I think of him in Cinderella Man, Master and Commander, and Gladiator, I have to agree!

Love & Friendship For all you literature nerds, I highly recommend Love & Friendship, which is based on Jane Austen’s novel, Lady Susan. While many of Austen’s books have an element of light-heartedness, Love & Friendship takes it to whole other level. So don’t let the nineteenth century clothing fool you; this is comedy, not a drama. Kate Beckinsale is delightful as Lady Susan, a manipulative flirt that successfully ensnares several men through the course of the film. One of my favorite characters is Sir Reginald DeCourcy, played by James Fleet. He reminds me of Mr. Collins, the awkward cousin from Pride & Prejudice, except way more moronic and oblivious!

Song of the month

“Wow” by Beck I had the chance to see Beck headline at the Boston Calling Music Festival last year while he was promoting his album Morning Phase. It would be an understatement to say that Beck is taking his music in a totally new direction with “Wow.” He’s not even singing for most of the song—just half talking, half rapping. It’s got a great beat though, and a really interesting flute melody. Beck recently told NME: “I was working on another song – maybe [2015 hit] ‘Dreams’ – when I had an idea for a flute beat. I picked up the mic and ‘Wow’ came out totally spontaneously. I put it away and forgot about it.” The full album is set to be released this fall.