Arts + Entertainment
by Travien Sears, Assistant A+E Editor
The school year has begun and many students have noticed a new face around campus, our newly hired instrumental Music Director Mr. Ramon Villanueva. Coming to Bosco from our brother Salesian school, Don Bosco Technical Institute, he has big goals in mind for our music program as a whole.
Mr. Villanueva, originally a French Horn player, has had some amazing experiences in his over 20-year musical career, from traveling to China, South Korea (twice), performing in Carnegie Hall, recording music for movies, and performing with pop artists in concerts. He is excited to share, encourage and inspire the next generation of musicians and students to work hard and to aim high.
Not only is he working with our students, but he’s also currently growing upon his previous collegiate experiences by pursuing a Masters Degree in Musicology. However, Mr. Villanueva focuses more on Latin American art music, whereas here in America we traditionally study Western art music. He found a passion for ethnomusicology, a non-Western art music study, which pretty much encompasses all music as well as the researching of music.
“[I want] to allow students to feel that they have a place where they can have another creative outlet aside from everything else offered at the school,” Mr. Villanueva said. FULL STORY
by Aharon Colon, Arts and Entertainment Editor
Movies would not be anything without music. There would be no box office hits, no social media buzz, and definitely no hits to where you can lie down on your bed late at night having nostalgic feelings about your favorite scenes from your favorite films.
We’ve all been there. However, I do not believe that the music in these iconic movies get the amount of recognition that they deserve.
When I think of an entire album that had a profound effect on a movie, I think of Black Panther (2018) by Kendrick Lamar, featuring a swath of artists like SZA, Schoolboy Q, 2 Chainz, Khalid, Swae Lee, Vince Staples, Anderson .Paak, Travis Scott and many more. This album has defined modern day soundtracks and set a new bar for movies to come. FULL STORY
by R.J. Johnson and Kourt Williams
Over the last two weeks, fans of Ermias “Nipsey Hussle” Asghedom celebrated the anniversary of the deceased rapper’s birthday, which was on August 15th, continuing the trend of the rapper’s premature demise having a more positive than negative impact on the L.A. area.
Initially, the murder of Nipsey, which was thought to be a gang hit, brought speculation of another “40 Days, 40 Nights,” which is a 40-day span of gang members commiting murder and terrorizing their communities, as well as neighboring ones, in retaliation for gang violence.
This didn’t pan out and after a couple of days of grieving over Nipsey’s passing, his gang “Neighborhood 40 Crip” and the rest of the L.A. area realized that Nipsey’s death was, in fact, internal, as he was slain by fellow “Neighborhood 40 Crip” member Eric Holder. FULL STORY
by Ryan Tavera
Quentin Tarantino’s ninth film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood lives up to the standards that one of America’s greatest living directors has set for all of his films.
Going into this film, this reviewer expected a classic Tarantino affair, with blood-filled scenes and clever dialogue. However, this film is breaking away from trademark aesthetics such as his nonlinear storytelling and speech heavy scenes. Instead, he focuses more on traditional storytelling, making a smooth watching experience and entertaining piece of film.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood takes place in 1969 and pays homage to an era otherwise known as the Golden Age of Hollywood. FULL STORY
by Samuel Rodriguez
The new Netflix movie release “The Highwaymen” is one that sets high expectations but cannot deliver.
The story revolves around two of the United States most infamous criminals: Bonnie and Clyde. However, the movie places a twist on the story as it focuses on the the two policemen that caught the criminals, Frank Hamer and Maney Gault.
Frank Hamer (Kevin Costner) and Maney Gault (Woody Harrelson) are former Texas Rangers hired to track Bonnie and Clyde and put an end to their rampage. The story focuses on the brotherhood between the two rangers and their journey in tracking the infamous criminals that leads to their capture.
The story takes place in the mid 1930’s and begins with Bonnie and Clyde breaking prisoners out of Eastham Prison Farm in Texas. FULL STORY
by Nnamdi Chugbo
Lil Uzi Vert has finally made his return to the music industry.
The Philadelphia based rapper, born Symere Woods, had been on a hiatus from releasing any music since the artist released his hit single “New Patek” in September 2018, and his best selling album, “Luv is Rage 2,” in August 2017.
Uzi struggled to release music due to contract disputes with his Generation Now label executives, Don Cannon and DJ Drama. However, on March 28th, 2019, Uzi made his long awaited return to the music scene with a controversial single titled “Free Uzi.”
“Free Uzi” was a freestyle over the beat of “Gangway” by G Herbo, who is credited as an inspiration to Lil Uzi Vert. FULL STORY
by Jalen Manson
(WARNING: SPOILERS FROM “AVENGERS: ENDGAME” AHEAD)
A snap, a reversal, and the death of a beloved Marvel Cinematic Universe legend brought the end of Marvel’s phase three.
Since the first “Iron Man” film debuted in 2008, Marvel has taken a group of characters and created a 22 movie-long MCU (cinematic universe) over the last 11 years of real time.
Within this time, the 22 movies released were divided into three phases, with approximately seven movies in each phase.
The first phase of the MCU set the tone for tremendous success down the line, introducing Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, the Incredible Hulk, Black Widow, and Hawkeye as the original six Avengers. FULL STORY
by Joshua Adoh
Jordan Peele has uncovered the meaning behind the twist end in his latest movie release, “Us!”
The brilliant and terrifying film has already recruited more than $100 million in the box offices. Horror is not the foundation of the film, but rather a means of execution.
Lupita Nyong’o’s masterful acting in “Us” returns respect to the horror genre and may be the second film in the genre to win an Oscar for “Best Picture.” The amazing soundtrack from Michael Abels solidifies it’s greatness. FULL STORY
by Jalen Manson
On March 13th, 2019, Netflix released new gripping action movie “Triple Frontier” directed by J.C. Chandor.
Starring Oscar Isaac and Ben Affleck, the movie sports a special cast. It is an nonstop action-filled picture that brings new twists and turns in seemingly every minute.
Tom “Redfly” Davis (played by Affleck), Santiago “Pope” Garcia (played by Isaac), William “Iron Head” Miller (Charlie Hunnam), Francisco “Catfish” Morales (Pedro Pascal), and Ben Miller (Garret Hedlund) partner back up from their old military days and go on a money-driven adventure to steal the fortunes of a wanted drug kingpin. FULL STORY
by John Gallegos
The St. John Bosco theater program entered 2019 with the task of tackling the play Ragtime: The Musical. A play with a social message that resonated with the audience as the material, although taking place in the early 20th century, parallels similar struggles we face today.
Like many great works of art, there are a plethora of layers to be depicted throughout “Ragtime”. Yet these layers are glaring as they deal with the continuing problems in American society with topics like social justice movements, race relations, immigration, as well as privileges stemming from affluence.
Although these may take place in at the turn of the century, over a hundred years ago the relevance is enhanced in this tumultuous time period we are in. FULL STORY
by Samuel Rodriguez
*Warning: Spoilers Ahead*
The popular show “You,” premiered on Netflix on December 26th and, since then, has quickly caught the attention of many viewers.
The show was originally premiered in September on Lifetime but had almost no viewersuntil it started showing on Netflix. The popularity of this American thriller is no surprise.
“Last week, Netflix declared “You” had drawn the sort of audience to make it a ‘huge hit.’ The streaming service said that “You” was on track to be watched by 40 million households within its first four weeks on the service,” stated The New York Times.
The show has received a 93 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 7.9/10 on IMDB. The sudden outburst of attention has built up a much bigger fanbase that are begging for the second season to come soon. FULL STORY
by Nnamdi Chugbo
On February 22nd, 2019, Atlanta-based rapper Gunna released his debut album and first project of 2019, “Drip or Drown 2.”
Gunna had a very strong 2018, to say the least. In February of 2018, Gunna gave fans arguably his best piece of work of all time in “Drip Season 3.” He then continued to collaborate with big-time artists such as Lil Baby, Travis Scott, Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert, 21 Savage, Tory Lanez, and even with Mariah Carey. His collaborative mixtape “Drip Harder” with Lil Baby was certified as RIAA gold (500,000 units sold), and it featured the 2018 hit single “Drip Too Hard“, which was certified RIAA platinum (1,000,000 units sold).
Looking to further his success in the past year, Gunna delivered a 16-track album to his fans with the two lead singles “One Call” and “Speed It Up.” The album is executively produced by Wheezy and Turbo the Great, and brings in the likes of Playboi Carti, Young Thug, and Lil Baby for featuring verses on “Same Yung N*gga,” “3 Headed Snake,” and “Derrick Fisher.” FULL STORY
by Christian James
We see another side to Migos member Offset with his newly released album, “Father Of 4.”
Offset is a memeber of the famous rap group “Migos,” which includes fellow superstars Quavo and Takeoff. The trio mostly raps together, but in the past year all three have dropped their own solo album. With recently new solo albums “Quavo Huncho” by Quavo and “The Last Rocket” by Takeoff, Offset was up to the plate. Both of these albums had great reviews, but Offset’s new album “Father of 4” blows them out in comparison.
Offset usually raps about money, women, and his hometown of Atlanta, but in this album he does more then that. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
On February 22nd at 12:00 AM, Miami rapper Lil Pump finally released his long awaited Harverd Dropout.
Harverd Dropout is the second album Lil Pump has dropped in his 3 years of being in the rap game. His debut album Lil Pump was released in October of 2017, eventually being certified Gold, having sold 500,000 copies. His newest project, Harverd Dropout, much like his first has an assortment of features from highly acclaimed rappers – including Kanye West, Smokepurpp, Offset, Quavo, Lil Uzi Vert, YG and 2 Chainz – and his tracks sponsor the boastful lifestyle of the 18-year old rapper.
The album’s titled Harverd Dropout intentionally spelled incorrectly, paying homage to the time Pump incorrectly spelled Harvard University. Even more so, it is derived from the rapper’s fanbase and the ongoing joke that Pump attended Harvard University only to drop out of school to pursue his rap career. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
As of Wednesday January 30th, Ben Affleck tweeted and has seemingly alluded to his resignation as the role of Batman.
This news was revealed when The Hollywood Reporter stated that “Matt Reeves, [upcoming film] ‘The Batman’ [will premiere] on June 25, 2021, following a recent interview with [Reeves] about the plot, the movie’s villains, and more.” When news sources got wind of this, many twitter accounts posted about the feature film and shortly after, current Batman actor, Ben Affleck had this to say… FULL STORY
by Nnamdi Chugbo
On December 26th, 2018, producer and rapper Pi’erre Bourne joined vapor trap producer CardoGotWings to surprise fans with an upbeat, 14 track mixtape to end off an insane 2018 for the two artists.
Pi’erre Bourne is most widely known for his production and work with Atlanta-based rappers Playboi Carti and Young Nudy, however many listeners are unaware of his lyrical and rapping talents. He decided to focus on rapping in this project and left the production to Texas-based producer, CardoGotWings.
Pi’erre Bourne stuck to his usual rapping style and topics, a mix of rapping and singing with a light autotune over happy, upbeat trap beats. FULL STORY
by Joshua Lucero
Jahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy – also known as XXXTentacion – was born in Florida and became a worldwide-known musician in 2017.
Tentacion has influenced many young people with his albums that are a true touching of the inner feelings of one’s heart. XXX – in the beginning of his career – was troubled with charges of domestic violence and facing prison time. In this part of his life, there were many fans who believed he was a lost cause, but in many ways XXX proved to the world that he was changing.
Look at me, which was released on Soundcloud in December 2015, was his rising start to the top. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
Glass, released on January 19th, concluded the 19-year-long trilogy created by actor and filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan.
The movie was received very poorly and many critics went as far as saying that the finale was disappointing. Their overall consensus on Rotten Tomatoes showed a rating of 36 percent, while audience approval was much higher, receiving a 76 percent instead.
Shyamalan’s three-part series follows characters who on the outside look like the average man, but are revealed to possess superhuman abilities. FULL STORY
by Elijah Ramos
If you came looking to find someone talking about your favorite “Lil” rapper, well you’re out of luck.
5. Whack World – Tierra Whack
If you haven’t heard this entire album or even gave it a chance – oh man – you’re missing out. There’s something really special about this album – it’s artsy, weird, and cute. Whack can spit bar after bar. Whack World is unique in so many ways, and if you haven’t listened there are so many unique aspects to this album. For example, it’s an album that consists of 15 songs that are all one minute long and each song is different in it’s own way.
It’s hard to really dig deep Whack’s songs because of how short they are, which is why it comes in at number five on this list. I would love for it to be higher on my list but this year is packed with so many great albums that I fell in love with. FULL STORY
by Joshua Lucero
Aquaman is a film about more than just waterlogged voice echos and continuous hair movement.
Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa) was brought into the world through two people from completely separate worlds. Atlanta (Nicole Kidman) and Tom Curry (Temuera Morrison) were brought together when Atlanta, the most recent Queen of Atlantis at the time, ran away from an arranged marriage and washed up on the shores to Curry, a lighthouse man.
These two people from separate worlds would soon fall in love and give life to a child named Arthur Curry, otherwise known as Aquaman. FULL STORY
by Michael Beltran
Living in the great city of Los Angeles, you are open to a variety of activities to do with your family during this Christmas season. With the amazing weather, it’s not too cold to go out and walk around, opening up many options.
A great experience is going to Disneyland during the Christmas theme. With the decorations and the huge Christmas Tree, it makes it feel as if you are living in a Christmas fairytale.
The down side to doing this is the price, which makes it more of a once in awhile experience. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
Creed II is a boxing masterpiece, released on November 21st of this year, the film received major support from fans and critics alike. Their immediate responses gravitated towards overall astonishment and gratitude for the truly breathtaking performances by the actors on screen.
When reviewing the critique given by Rotten Tomatoes – an accredited website that certifies movies based on their appeal to both experienced critics and the average moviegoer – it’s obvious that the film did very well, receiving an 85 percent rating overall and a Certified Fresh rating.
Creed II begins by introducing its antagonist Viktor Drago, and the harsh life that he and his father live in Russia. Together, the two train for Viktor’s first fight, where that night he destroys his opponent within the first 2 rounds. FULL STORY
by Joshua Blake
Fallout 76 dropped worldwide today, as a role-playing game and the first in the series to be playable online. Fallout 76 is the ninth game in the Fallout series and serves as a narrative prequel to the series.
Just like all Fallout games before it, Fallout 76 takes place in post-nuclear America in the year 2102, which is the earliest year that has been playable in the Fallout series. Fallout 76 takes the same RPG elements that it has been known for and moves it to an online setting.
Since Fallout 76 creates an online experience, the games developer – Bethesda – has announced that the only people you will encounter in a game will be other online players. FULL STORY
by Kyle Moats
Red Dead Redemption 2 was released this past Friday to the masses as one of the most highly-anticipated games of the past year. I had the pleasure to sit down and really dive deep into this massive game this weekend.
Throughout my play-through, I was taken aback by how much this game had to offer and how many activities there are to explore. I could not take my eyes away from the screen, as every little detail kept adding another dimension to an already expansive game.
As you enter into the game, on of the first things you notice is how beautiful and eye-appealing this game is. FULL STORY
by Victor Curiel
Some of the qualities our school tries its best to instill in each of its students are those of leadership, empathy, teamwork, and compassion for others. It is the Salesians’ mission to make certain that all young men who pass through St. John Bosco leave with these lessons ingrained in their character.
Here at St. John Bosco, students are provided with various opportunities and pathways to learn and practice these skills. However, while some may argue that this is best accomplished in clubs such as youth ministry or ASB, there is nowhere that this is better exemplified than in St. John Bosco’s and St. Joseph’s theater departments. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
“Venom” was released on October 5th and quickly received a 31% rating from Rotten Tomatoes. Stating that the movie was confusing and screenplay lacking, reviews given were not in favor of the anti-hero.
An early look at “Venom” showed that critics didn’t like it one bit. Venom’s first incarnation on the big screen was trashed across social media and dreams of a 3-series franchise were crushed by what was determined in early screenings of the movie. Despite the outlash, the movie still saw an incredible turnout, grossing over $80 million from its opening weekend in the U.S. alone, breaking the October domestic box office record. FULL STORY
by Samuel Rodriguez
Halloween is around the corner, which means that there are lots of fun new activities to partake in in Los Angeles for all of October.
The Halloween season brings scary fright fests at various amusement parks, scary mazes throughout the city, and festive pumpkin patches. Such events include Universal Studios Horror Nights, Queen Mary’s Dark Harbour, Knotts Scary Farm, and Six Flags Fright Fest.
These places are sure to include scary and twisted mazes, giving you chills but still offering a good time with friends and/or family. FULL STORY
by Matthew Ruiz
“The Eagle has landed. One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
This is the most famous quote in space travel history. The recent blockbuster movie, “First Man” tells the story of famous astronaut Neil Armstrong’s life before and during the space race and during the United States’ Cold War against Russia.
This movie takes you through the life and journey of Neil Armstrong. The movie starts off showing him running a test flight, scratching the atmosphere in a rocket-powered jet. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
Marvel’s Spider-Man was under development by Insomniac Games for over 3 years. On September 7th, 2018, fans were finally able to get their hands on the video game upon its highly anticipated release.
The PS4 exclusive game was critically acclaimed, earning outstanding support from large game reviewers such as IGN and GameSpot, rating it 8.7 and 9 out of 10 respectively.
The game received enormous amounts of hype on multiple social media outlets and fans were thrilled by all the creativity and ingenuity being put into it. The game truly lived up to all the hype and anticipation brought on it and proved to be well-worth the wait. FULL STORY
by Elijah Ramos
When you think of 14-year-old boy trying to make extra money, you may think of a fryer or a dishwasher, but for “White Boy” Rick, he is an overachiever.
Rick grows up in a pretty toxic environment during his childhood. His sister is a drug addict, his dad is a gun dealer and his mom is not in the picture. He has a job for his dad’s company, as he spends time watching his dad buy and resell guns.
The two become partners in this gun business and plan on opening a VCR store in the future. Eventually, Rick starts exploring the streets on his own and sells some of his dad’s guns to local drug dealers at the young age of 14. FULL STORY
by Enrique Gutierrez
Following the recent Battle Royale video game trend, Call of Duty enters its 15th year of continuation with the never-before-seen “Blackout” Battle Royale mode.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 introduces a battle royale mode called “Blackout” to join the over-populated battle royale community. The new game mode has brought the attention of many streamers and players that do not usually play Call of Duty. Blackout has gained popularity and interest since its announcement and is going to change people’s view of Call of Duty for a long time.
Treyarch released a beta for those who pre-ordered Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 early. Those people have the opportunity to play the new game mode earlier than anybody else. The beta was live for Playstation and Xbox starting September 10th and ended a week later on September 17th. The beta was live for PC gamers September 14th through September 17th. FULL STORY
by Elijah Ramos
BlacKkKlansman is a 2018 crime and drama film that will have you laughing out loud but also taking in and understanding a powerful message on racial discrimination and breaking down racial barriers in the late 20th century in America.
This Spike Lee directed film hones and focuses in on a powerful message. This is one of popular figure Lee’s first directed films in a while, and honestly in my opinion one of his best in a long time.
He tackles the issue of racism and it’s history, which is never easy. As a director, you are bound to receive a lot of criticism and controversy when talking about racism and taking sides in your film. FULL STORY
by Enrique Gutierrez
Rainbow Six Siege enters its year 3, season 3 update with Ubisoft introducing new in-game improvements, a renovated Hereford Base, the return of Favela, a new Elite Skin Set and two new additions to the Rainbow Six Siege team.
The long awaited update and game patch has finally released September 4th on all platforms, introducing Operation Grim Sky. PC players were been able to play the new operation as Ubisoft released it on a test server mid-August.
The biggest Twitch TV Rainbow Six Siege streamers including Macie Jay, King George, and Beaulo have shared the content across the web and given a taste to those who were unable to play the test servers. Rainbow Six Siege has exploded and has gained interest over the past month due to it being on a limited time sale and popular Fortnite streamers promoting the game. Thanks to their partnership with Fortnite streamers, they have drawn interest and new players are coming to join the Siege community. FULL STORY
by Nick Hernandez
The end of Fortnite’s Season 4 was highly anticipated. The live “Rocket Launch” and the unveiling of the “Visitor” skin left countless players speculating as to what might happen in Season 5.
The giant rift in the sky that exponentially grew led to many theories and at the start of Season 5 players found out what all the hype was about.
Upon updating Fortnite, players were greeted at the Battle Royale game menu with an ominous desert gas station loading screen. When they joined in-game, the mini-map showed various new “Points of Interest” across the updated world. Such spots included Paradise Palms and Lazy Links, which were new to players and left many enthusiastic for what was to come. FULL STORY
by AJ Castillo
Although there are still 3 months left in 2018, this year in rap is one that will not be soon forgotten. With highly anticipated releases from the likes of Drake, J. Cole, and Travis Scott, this year has been one of massive proportions in the industry. However, five albums in particular separate themselves from the pack.
When Kanye West returned to Twitter, fans knew that something exciting was bound to take place, yet no one could have expected this big of a year from the rap legend. Producing five albums including a solo work and a duo with his longtime friend Kid Cudi, West has once again shown that even with his age, he is still one of the top artists not only in hip-hop, but in music as a whole. FULL STORY
by Nikolas Molina & Elliston Ospina
Recently in the hip-hop industry, three albums dropped by mainstream artists in a span of three weeks. Life’s A Trip by Trippie Redd, Astroworld by Travis Scott, and Stay Dangerous by YG all have unique sounds differing from one another.
Life’s a Trip – Trippie Redd
Trippie Redd’s debut album, Life’s A Trip, did not live up to hype and anticipation that was received before its release.
Trippie differentiated from his traditional music style, which was his strength and what people listened to him for. He did not stick to his emo or sad style of music usually mixed with a lot of bass, as seen in songs such as “Dark Knight Dummo” featuring Travis Scott.
However on this album, he did show some new-age flare in songs like “Oomps Revenge.” Five of Trippie Redd’s fourteen songs were singles that had already been published, much to the dismay of his listeners. FULL STORY
by Joshua Blake
Madden ’19 is the newest installment for the franchise which became available on all platforms August 10th. I have spent countless hours on this game and I can confidently say that I am very disappointed in this years addition.
Electronic Arts’ (EA) lack of effort with this game is evident, as there is next to nothing different from last year’s installment. It looks and plays almost identically to last year’s Madden. The game is filled with countless bugs and glitches and there are an absurd amount of micro-transactions, which is not new for Madden whatsoever. Micro-transactions are extremely controversial in the current gaming world, as games such as Fortnite and Madden thrive off these in-game purchases.
The game lacks new, quality features that should’ve been added to the franchise and instead gives you the same game as last year, just with slightly improved graphics and a new roster. Madden ’19 overall is a very low quality football game. FULL STORY
by Caleb Wiley
With the sci-fi classic “Blade Runner” being so beloved and Ridley Scott being the great and successful director that he is, Denis Villeneuve had big shoes to fill in directing the sequel “Blade Runner 2049”.
He did not disappoint, delivering a beauty that might very well be another classic, and even surpass the first one.
The movie was one of the best thrillers of the year, with enough action to complement the story. The cast was very talented and did a wonderful job. Amazing scenery and imagery, that did not overdo itself by seeming too futuristic, made the audience believe that this is what the near future may look like. FULL STORY