Culture Feature

Is the Boston Dynamics Dance Video Proof That Robots Have Soul(s)?

The elaborate four-robot dance to The Contours "Do You Love Me," showed off some impressive moves.

Legendary dancer and choreographer Martha Graham famously said that "dance is the hidden language of the soul."

If that's true, what does it say that the robots of Boston Dynamics just proved that they can dance better than most humans?

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Joe Gardiner, voiced by Jamie Foxx, in "Soul"

It could have been easy — a Pixar movie about living every day to the fullest with creative animation and a moralistic lesson about who and how to be. I watched Soul because everyone was talking about it, but this is what I expected. What came was surprisingly complex, carefully crafted, and exactly the movie we all needed to end 2020.

In 2015, everyone was talking about a Pixar animated film called Inside Out. Somehow, maybe taking their younger relatives to see it or walking into a theatre with an edible and nothing else to do, everyone had seen it, not just kids.

And everyone loved it.

Suddenly, a children's film about the complexity of emotions was telling everyone about themselves. What was remarkable about Inside Out was that it talked to its audience without belittling them and did what the best children's movies do: told a smart story in an accessible way.

The unintended effect was how well it was received by adults alike. Inside Out approached emotions in a way which felt hopeful, yet opposite to grind culture or what has become known as "toxic positivity." Soul comes from the same creators to continue the same work — examining our inner lives.

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Film News

Can Marvel Defeat the "Fantastic Four" Curse?

Will the MCU magic translate to the newly announced film, or are we in for another terrible Fantastic Four movie?

At Disney's 2020 Investor Day event, the media giant announced a huge slate of announcements involving Star Wars, Pixar, Disney+, and — of course — Marvel Studios.

Along with trailers for Loki — a series following Tom Hiddleston's Norse god of mischief — and the bizarre throwback sitcom Wandavision, Marvel announced plans for a movie starring "Marvel's first family," AKA the Fantastic Four. There's only one problem: Fantastic Four movies are always terrible.

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Culture Feature

7 Times David Blaine Tried (and Failed) to Escape the Apocalypse

Most of David Blaine's "stunts" are actually elaborate attempts to escape humanity's dark fate.

This week, magician and death-defying early-2000s icon David Blaine failed to escape our planet's inexorable hold.

Many are reporting Blaine's Ascension—dangling from helium balloons that pulled him nearly 25,000 feet above the earth's surface—as just another "stunt," like the time he held his breath for 17 minutes, or the time he encased himself in ice for 63 hours. But in truth, Blaine's latest spectacle reveals the uncomfortable reality that these supposed stunts always contained: David Blaine is trying desperately to escape humanity's inevitable collective doom.

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Culture Feature

Remembering 10 of Fred Willard's Most Iconic Roles

A master of improvisation, Fred Willard leaves a legacy of memorable performances

Modern Family

On Friday comedic actor Fred Willard died at the age of 86.

With a career in television and movies that spanned six decades—from the 1960s comedy scene where he developed a close friendship with Jerry Stiller to his most recent work on the forthcoming Netflix series Space Force—Willard is probably best known for improvisational work in the mockumentary films of Christopher Guest. While he almost always played an unflappable buffoon, his buoyant charm and genius for ad-libbed absurdity made him a perennial joy to watch in both his major film roles and his frequent guest appearances on shows like The Simpsons, Community, and Drunk History. Here's a look back at some of his most iconic roles.

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Latinx heritage month, September 15th to October 15th, is a time to honor the contributions of Latinx Americans to the culture and history of the United States.

To celebrate, check out this list of the best movies and TV shows about the lives of Latinx individuals or starring Latinx individuals.

Coco (2017)

One of the most visually stunning animated movies ever made, Coco follows the story of a young boy named Miguel who wants desperately to be a famous musician despite his family's ban on music. Eventually, he finds himself in the land of the dead, where adventure and self-discovery ensue. It's a beautiful movie about familial ties, Mexican culture, and what it really means to idolize someone.