‘Origin’ kicks off a year of powerful films

January 8, 2024 1:29 pm

[Source: CNN Entertainment]

New year, new content.

Welcome to 2024. We embrace this year and are hopeful that good times, they are a-coming.

After a bit of a tumultuous year in pop culture and entertainment (remember those SAG-AFTRA and WGA strikes?), hopefully things will be both calmer and more exciting – in a good way – in the industry.

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One movie that plenty of people are looking forward to is giving me hope for what’s to come.

Full disclosure: I’ve known Ava DuVernay since before she became a famed movie director.

Back then she worked in public relations, and was already great at grasping what makes for a great story.

Her latest film, “Origin,” isn’t even out yet and is already being hailed as a must-see film.

No spoilers here, but the movie is an adaptation of Isabel Wilkerson’s book “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents,” and it’s masterfully done.

DuVernay both wrote and directed this project, which examines multiple human issues from prejudice to grief.

The key to what’s been achieved here, however, is how DuVernay manages to make viewers think without hammering them over the head with the heaviness that often accompanies such topics. Not to mention the transcendent performance by star Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor.

I immediately thought Oscar nominations, but early on in this awards season “Origin” hasn’t received much attention so far, which has been surprising to me.

Fingers crossed that audiences will show it more love and the Academy Awards does right by it.

Cardi B and Offset have split multiple times, so we shouldn’t be surprised that their on-again/off-again relationship never seems to be totally off.

Recently, Cardi B engaged in some TMI (too much information) by sharing that she and her estranged husband hooked up for New Year’s Eve.

Granted, they are adults and grown people do grown things, but Cardi B has been known to go off on her social media followers for their commentary about her personal life when she doesn’t like it. Perhaps sharing about her marital intimacy doesn’t exactly dissuade people from doing that?

In other words, please take us out of the chat, Cardi B. and Offset.

Podcasts don’t always have to be about real life.

I’m a little late to the party on this one, but am now all in with “Batman Unburied,” a Spotify podcast in which a serial killer is terrorizing Gotham, but unfortunately Bruce Wayne has no memory of being Batman and consequently can’t save the city.

It’s seriously engaging even if you aren’t a major Batman fan. Which is not to say you won’t be by the time you finish the podcast.

Stream it on Spotify.

One thing Netflix does well is true crime documentaries.

“Bitconned” is one of its latest and it’s a fascinating look at some people who took advantage of the unregulated world of cryptocurrency to scam people.

Mind you, plenty of people still don’t even understand bitcoin and such, but we all get being conned.

It’s currently streaming on Netflix.