It may feel as though nearly everyone you know is on vacation, but that doesn’t mean pop culture is slowing down this week. Here are 10 things worth giving some of your valuable headspace to over the next seven days.
1. WHAT TO WATCH AT THE CINEMA WITH YOUR MOST BADASS PALS
Likened to The Dirty Dozen, this summer’s buzziest blockbuster follows a crew of imprisoned super-villains who carry out dangerous assignments for the government in exchange for more lenient treatment. The cast includes Jared Leto as the Joker and Will Smith as conflicted assassin Deadshot, but the trailers suggest rising star Margot Robbie could outshine them both as maniacal former psychiatrist Harley Quinn. Note: be sure to stay past the end credits.
2. WHAT TO WATCH AT THE CINEMA WITH AN ANALYTICAL CINEPHILE FRIEND
Director Ira Sachs‘s follow-up to 2014’s acclaimed Love Is Strange draws on similar themes of friendship and gentrification in New York City. Young actors Michael Barbieri and Theo Taplitz play Brooklyn teenagers whose natural affinity with one another is threatened by a increasingly bitter dispute involving their parents. It’s beautifully observed and quietly thought-provoking stuff.
3. WHAT TO WATCH AT HOME WITH ABSOLUTELY NO DISTRACTIONS (MEANING PLEASE PUT DOWN YOUR SMARTPHONE)
Every Olympics opening ceremony is spectacular, but the Rio de Janeiro games look set to kick off in unique style. Brazilian filmmaker Fernando Meirelles (City of God, The Constant Gardener) is one of the creative directors; world-famous supermodel Gisele Bündchen will be playing a key role; and the creative team have said they will compensate for their relatively tight budget by emphasizing “originality” over “luxury,” and focusing on “creativity, rhythm and emotion.” Color us intrigued.
4. WHAT TO WATCH AT HOME WITH YOUR FAVORITE CHILDHOOD SNACK
Steven Spielberg‘s impressive CGI-led version of The BFG is playing in theaters now, but it can’t quite compete with the old-fashioned, live-action charms of this classic Roald Dahl adaptation directed by Danny DeVito. Matilda actually opened 20 years ago this week, so it’s the perfect time to revisit Mara Wilson’s winning performance as Dahl’s precocious heroine.
5. WHAT TO ADD TO YOUR SONGS OF THE SUMMER PLAYLIST
Already a smash in Europe, this catchy club jam from Kosovo Albanian newcomer Era Istrefi sounds like Rihanna crossed with “Lean On” hit-makers Major Lazer. We suggest devouring “BonBon” now before it becomes completely inescapable.
6. WHAT TO ADD TO YOUR SONGS OF THE SUMMER PLAYLIST RIGHT AFTER “BONBON”
Dua Lipa is potentially the next huge pop star to emerge from the U.K., and this superb tropical house tune sounds like her breakthrough hit. Coincidentally, her parents hail from Prishtina, the city where Era Estrefi grew up, so we couldn’t resist recommending both of their songs in the same week.
7. WHICH ROCK BOX SET TO START SAVING UP FOR
Available to pre-order now ahead of its September release, this 12-CD set collects absolutely everything Bowie released during the so-called “American phase” of his career. The classic albums Diamond Dogs, Young Americans and Station to Station are included, but super-fans will be most tempted by The Gouster, a previously unreleased album featuring early versions of material which eventually made it onto Young Americans.
8. WHO TO FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM FOR A TASTE OF WORLDWIDE STREET STYLE
GarçonJon is actually Jonathan Daniel Pryce, an award-winning Scottish photographer who shot a different bearded man on the streets of London every day for 100 days, then turned it into a cult coffee table book. He travels a lot on commissions for Vogue, GQ and i-D, so expect glimpses of what stylish guys are wearing out and about from Milan, Italy to Austin, TX.
9. WHO TO FOLLOW ON TWITTER FOR PERSONALIZED LIFE ADVICE
Erykah Badu is obviously a well-respected singer and activist, but now, in a rather unexpected development, she’s also started giving palm readings on Twitter. Why not tweet her a snap of your hand and see what she says? Just don’t be surprised if her response is tongue-in-cheek: one follower was told recently, “I see Netflix and I see… Is that chill?”
10. AND, FINALLY, WHO TO FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM FOR UNASHAMED RANDOMNESS
Though she’s not a household name, this brilliant comic actress is a cult favorite thanks to roles in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, BoJack Horseman, and, of course, the 1999-2000 comedy Strangers with Candy. Her Instagram is gloriously unpredictable—one day you get a silly animal pic, the next she shares a semi-political meme or posts a classic photo of David Bowie. The fact she never captions anything adds to the fun of trying to work out, “Why that picture, and why today?”Read More