Christopher Panella

Christopher Panella is an Arts Editor and junior double-majoring in Film and Media Studies and English. Chris can be reached at [email protected]

‘Sword,’ ‘Shield’ are most balanced, exciting Pokémon games in years

Nintendo is back with “Pokémon Sword” (2019) and “Pokémon Shield” (2019), the latest installments in the iconic role-playing game series. The eighth generation games have already seen plenty of success; they’re the fastest-selling Nintendo Switch games ever, with 6 million copies sold in their launch weekend alone. And despite the games’ release being clouded with […]

Shults talks writing, directing ‘Waves’

Premiering at the Telluride Film Festival this past August, “Waves” (2019) is a detailed study of a black family in South Florida — father Ronald (Sterling K. Brown), stepmother Catharine (Renée Elise Goldsberry), daughter Emily (Taylor Russell) and son Tyler (Kelvin Harrison Jr.). Directed and written by Trey Edward Shults, the film navigates various aspects […]

Burns, Jones discuss making ‘The Report’

“The Report” (2019) follows Daniel J. Jones (Adam Driver) and his investigation into the “enhanced interrogation techniques” — a softer, more cryptic term to describe systematic torture — that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) employed following the Sept. 11 attacks. Based on Jones’ real experience with the “Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Committee Report of […]

‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ is slow-burning excellence

This review contains spoilers. Shown by the Independent Film Festival Boston during its fifth annual Fall Focus at The Brattle Theatre, “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” (2019) is a meticulous film. Following Marianne (Noémie Merlant), a painter, as she is hired to paint a portrait of Héloïse (Adèle Haenel), a woman being married to […]

‘Parasite’ disarms before dealing final blow

This review contains spoilers. There’s a sense, when things are going far too well, that something bad is coming. It could be the calm before the storm. The anxiety of life being too good to be true is similar; the idea of everything going right can’t exist without the acknowledgement that something will eventually ruin […]

‘Jojo Rabbit’ is effective satire, but feels too safe

While watching “Jojo Rabbit” (2019), the audience is asked to laugh at — and sometimes, along with — the film’s main character, Jojo “Rabbit” Betzler (Roman Griffin Davis). Jojo is a devout Adolf Hitler lover, a child who absolutely adores and idolizes the Nazi Party. His room is full of Nazi propaganda. He attends a […]

Eggers talks mythos and making of ‘The Lighthouse’

Following two lighthouse keepers — the younger, mysterious Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson) and the older, slightly senile Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe) — “The Lighthouse” (2019) is a slow-burning descent into madness that’s thrilling to watch. It’s a fresh film that feels handmade, original and is thought-provoking. “The Lighthouse” was born from director Robert Eggers’ love […]

The wet weirdness of ‘The Lighthouse’

Madness isn’t exactly something to crash right into — there’s no cannonballing into a pool of insanity. Rather, it’s more likely that losing one’s mind is a slow wade through icy water, waves roaring and foaming. But there has to be a source to madness — not a moment that causes a mental break, but […]

Platt, Schlaepfer talk about honesty, timeliness of ‘The Politician’

Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk have a long list of successes. Shows like “Glee” (2009–2015), “American Horror Story” (2011–present), “Scream Queens” (2015–2016) and “Pose” (2018–present) are undoubtedly cultural touchstones. There’s variety in the duo’s work, but there’s no denying when something just feels like a Murphy/Falchuk production. Regardless if the show features Idina Menzel or […]

Ten films to look forward to for the remainder of 2019

With only a few months left in 2019, many of the year’s most anticipated films are soon to arrive. It may feel like 2019 has been quite long — it’s hard to believe Jordan Peele’s “Us” (2019) came out in March — but there are plenty of exciting releases to help close out the year. […]