Caitlin's Pop of Culture: March Viewings

I’m baaaaack! This month, my movie and TV selections lined up perfectly with Women’s History Month, and I even had a splash of green. Overall, this month’s viewings were top-notch and didn’t disappoint. WARNING: Some spoilers ahead!

TV Shows

"Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" Season 4

I was an early fan of “Kimmy” and after four seasons, she has not disappointed. Netflix dropped the last half of its final season in January, but I just got around to watching it. On the surface, "Kimmy" is a funny, outrageous show with an even crazier cast of characters, but beneath that is a show that leaves its viewers questioning many social issues. Season four nicely wrapped up each of the character’s storylines and left us with a message we all need right now: positivity will always win.

Rating: A

"The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" Season 2

Another show I was a bit behind on, “Maisel’s” season two picks up shortly after season one with Midge going full-force on building a career in the male-driven world of 1950s comedy. Of course, life isn’t simple for our dazzling heroine. Midge is struggling to balance her career, her family, her estranged husband Joel, her pushy manager Susie, a new love interest AND trying to work her way back up to the makeup counter at the department store! There’s a reason marvelous is in the title! Season two of “Maisel” provides the same laughs, colorful costumes and scenery, perfectly staged scenes, and strong cast performances as season one, but at a much slower pace. While the pacing was the biggest disappointment for me, I dismiss it because I see it as a metaphor for Midge’s current status: on the cusp of greatness!

Rating: A-

"Little House on the Prairie" Season One

This month Amazon Prime answered one of my greatest wishes: the ability to stream all nine seasons of “Little House”. At the tender age of eight, I took up a fascination with Laura Ingalls Wilder, her books and the TV series adaptation. Thanks to my current age and Amazon’s streaming service though, I have now seen the show with a new set of eyes. What looks like a feel-good family show on the surface is also a drama that deals with addressing social issues that are still relevant today. I am a bigger fan of some of the later seasons of the show but my rewatch of the first season this month proved “Little House” always finds a way into your heart…….and Charles Ingalls is one good-looking dad.

Rating: A+

Movies

"Love, Rosie"

“Love, Rosie” has been on my radar for a while, but it had an issue with bouncing on and off streaming platforms. Fortunately, this rom-com popped itself over to Netflix, but this long wait was not worth it. “Love, Rosie” focuses on the relationship between childhood friends Alex and Rosie. The film is a whole ‘will they or won’t they’, but you know in the end they will. Lily Collins and Sam Claflin have the making of a great couple, but this cliche-filled movie makes them stop short of their potential. “Love, Rosie” is perfect for a cheesy film night with the girl gang but does not offer much substance outside of that.

Rating: D+

"9 to 5"

The OG boss women! Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dolly Parton take on their bigoted boss in this ‘80s comedy classic. What surprised me most about this film is how progressive it was for its time. Touching on the ideas of sexual harassment and the pay gap, “9 to 5” is an early look at the struggles of a working woman.

Rating: B

"The Hate U Give"

A movie that comes straight from the news headlines, “The Hate U Give” is a realistic portrayal of the issue of race in modern-day America. An adaptation of the bestselling young adult novel of the same name, “The Hate U Give” tells the story of Starr Carter, an African-American teenager stuck between the world of her poor African-American community and the rich, mostly white, private school she attends. Her balancing act is soon destroyed after she witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend due to a police officer. This incident forces Starr to not only open her eyes to how complicated the world is but also find the ability to use her voice to speak the truth. “The Hate U Give” shows not only to what it means to be African-American, but what it means to be a person of color in America. As a POC, Starr’s journey and struggle to find her own identity spoke to me, and the film is also an excellent tool for non-POCs to become better educated on racism for the sake of becoming a strong ally to POC communities.

Rating: A+

"Captain Marvel"

Look out, Thanos! Captain Marvel is here! The much-hyped first female Marvel hero movie dropped this month, and the film met my expectations, which weren’t very high, to begin with. No! My low standards were not based on the fact that it was female-led, but the early trailers just didn’t look good. The trailers never got me excited or pumped to join Team Captain Marvel. While I’m a fan of Brie Larson, her portrayal of Carol Danvers and her superhero counterpart lacks a spark that other MCU actors have. The use of Marvel’s typical origin story formula slacks off a bit here and the wit never seems to land. Some high points of the film include Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury, who we haven’t seen in a hot minute and answers to many of the MCU’s lingering questions before we hit “Avengers: Endgame”.

Rating: B-

"Green Book"

And here is my dash of green! This little movie has created quite a bit of controversy beginning with its “Best Picture” wins at the Golden Globes and the Oscars. So naturally, I had to see what all the fuss was about! “Green Book” is inspired by the true story of Tony Lip, an Italian-American man, who is hired to drive the world renown African-American musician Dr. Don Shirley for a concert tour of the deep South. I began watching the film as a skeptic but slowly fell into the charm of the film. Does the film have some scenes that exemplify the idea of a white savior? Yes, but the relationship of the two men is a mutual educational experience on not just race, but on humanity. Tony learns from Don and Don learns from Tony. “Green Book’s” message is a bit muddled but the chemistry and heart Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali bring to their characters is pure cinema magic!

Rating: B

Want to talk entertainment? Twitter: @caitycat_1