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Joker is director Todd Phillips's modern take on movies like Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy. It stars Joaquin Phoenix in the title role in what happens also to be... a Batman movie. It's been called "a gloriously daring and explosive film" and "a movie that borders on genius" but also "bleak and juvenile" and "a movie of a cynicism so vast and pervasive as to render the viewing experience even emptier than its slapdash aesthetic does."

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

The Netflix limited series Unbelievable stars Toni Collette, Merritt Wever, and Kaitlyn Dever. It tells the true story of a serial rapist and the investigation that caught him, and it's based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning Marshall Project and ProPublica article "An Unbelievable Story of Rape" and the This American Life episode based on that.

Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

The Nose couldn't decide which of last weekend's two big new movies to go see, so it went to both.

Downton Abbey, the feature film continuation of the incredibly popular PBS series, is the number one movie in the country. Its $31 million opening was the biggest ever for the studio that made it, Focus Features. Not bad for a PG-rated, special effects-free drama made for grownups.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Merriam-Webster has added 533 new words to its dictionary. Words like "deep state," "pickleball," "escape room," and "Bechdel test." My favorite is probably "fatberg." But there's a particular new dictionary entry that The Nose is specifically interested in: "dad joke."

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Sticks & Stones is Dave Chappelle's fifth standup comedy special for Netflix in three years. All four previous specials won the Grammy for Best Comedy Album, and one of them won the Emmy for Outstanding Variety Special. The critical response to this latest special, though, has been a bit more muted.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

The Nose has this odd habit of covering basically every new Taylor Swift single/video. And so there's a new Taylor Swift single/video. And so The Nose is covering it.

And: As this is the way the world works now, a Facebook post has started a backlash against Frank Pepe Pizzeria over... politics. Sigh.

Amazon Studios

Everything's canceled, more or less. The movie The Hunt was canceled before anybody got to see it. People talked about canceling the movie Adam before anybody got to see it. Sarah Silverman was canceled, from a movie anyway, for something she did -- on television -- 12 years ago. The OA was canceled, but people maybe don't believe that it was canceled? And we're apparently on a path toward canceling... the Dewey decimal system?

Seth Rogen. Er, no. That's not right. Carlos Mejia, I meant. / Connecticut Public Radio

Two things arrived this week that the world probably didn't previously know it needed: The Impossible Whopper and "the definitive Nicolas Cage interview." The Nose taste tests one of them live on the air and discusses both. I'll leave it a mystery which is which.

Plus, a look at two movies: the Charlize Theron-Seth Rogen rom-com Long Shot (now available on iTunes/Amazon/DVD/Blu-ray/etc.) and the Cambridge Analytica documentary The Great Hack (out now on Netflix).

Sony Pictures

Why do we expect women to clean up everybody's messes all the time? The Cut's Lisa Miller thinks it just might be because of... purses:

Women's bags [...] allow us -- like sherpas or packhorses -- to lug around the tool kits of servitude. A woman is expected to be prepared for every eventuality, and culture has formalized that expectation. Online, lists of necessities proliferate: 12, 14, 17, 19, 30 things a woman should keep in her purse. Almost all include tissues, breath mints, hand sanitizer, and tampons -- but also "a condom, because this is her responsibility, too."

Bleecker Street Media

Last weekend, Marvel unveiled its plans for Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (along with a few hints and winks and nods about Phase Five -- which is mostly notable 'cause it means they're planning a Phase Five).

And we're currently in the middle of a year when, when it's all said and done, the top eight highest-grossing movies may well have all come from Disney or Marvel or both. The top eight. That's not a typo. Here, look:

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

There's kind of a lot going on this week: There's rumored to be a new 007. The Emmy nominations are out. There's a new dating trend called 'Caspering.' Farhad Manjoo thinks we should all use the singular 'they.' 1.7 million people want to raid Area 51. Anthony Fantano (or an animated version of Anthony Fantano, really) is in the new "Old Town Road" video. During the New York City blackout, Star Wars fans helped direct traffic... with their lightsabers. And: The Cats trailer is out, and it's maybe kind of, uh, horrifying?

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Spider-Man: Far From Home is the 23rd feature film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the final entry in its Infinity Saga. It is the 11th and final film in the MCU's Phase Three, even though everybody thought it'd probably be the first part of Phase Four, and now nobody really knows what Phase Four will start with.

I haven't entirely understood anything I've written so far, but I do get this bit: There won't be another Marvel movie for ten whole months -- all the way until next May.

HBO

No one is surprised to hear that Disney is planning a live-action remake of The Little Mermaid. Some people were surprised, though, at the announcement that Halle Bailey, who is African American, has been cast as the titular Ariel. And probably the least surprising part of the whole thing is that part of the internet (the racist part) is mad about it.

And: Rapper Lil Nas X came out on the last day of Pride month. Is this news?

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Rocketman is the sort of movie where (tiny spoiler ahead here, I suppose) "Elton John," at one point, becomes an actual "rocket man"... and blasts off into the sky... with fire shooting out of his feet. I mean, what else do you need to know really, right?

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Graduation season is upon us. Your niece is finishing high school. Your neighbor's son is graduating from Tulane. Your boss just got her second Master's. How did it get to be that the obvious gift for all of these people is... a Dr. Seuss book?

And then: Vulture, this week, published a click-bait listicle ranking all the HBO shows ever. The Nose took the bait and clicked. And... Six Feet Under didn't make the top ten? Girls isn't in the top 25? John from Cincinnati made the top 30? Did anybody even understand that show?

And speaking of shows, George Clooney and Grant Heslov's new Hulu miniseries is a four-and-a-half-hour, six-episode adaption of Joseph Heller's Catch-22. Is that what the world needed right now?

Netflix

No Country for Old Men. Fargo. The Big Lebowski. Raising Arizona. O Brother, Where Art Thou? Miller's Crossing.

Over the past 35 years, Joel and Ethan Coen have reliably been among the most recognizable voices in moviemaking.

Their latest, the anthology western The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, hit Netflix last fall.

This hour: a Noseish look at the work of the Coen brothers.

HBO

It's been a rough week for the famous. Last Saturday, Peggy Lipton died at age 72. On Monday, Doris Day died at 97. Then on Tuesday, it was Tim Conway at 85. And yesterday, I. M. Pei died aged 102.

And the week's gone kind of the same way for TV shows too. On Sunday, Veep finished its seven-year run on HBO. Last night, The Big Bang Theory aired its 279th and final episode. And Game of Thrones's series finale is set to air this coming Sunday.

Garrett Ziegler / flickr creative commons

Father of the Bride is Vampire Weekend's fourth studio album, their first in nearly six years, and their first for a major label. It has been called a "masterpiece" and a "multi-layered dissertation on the world's ills." It's also been called "mild" and "some of the worst ideas the band has ever put to tape." The real question is, though: Is Vampire Weekend still cool?

And then: Gorman Bechard's Pizza, A Love Story has its New Haven premiere in a few weeks at this year's NHdocs documentary film festival. The Nose talks Pizza, specifically, and pizza, more generally, from the pizza capital of the world.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Avengers: Endgame is the 22nd feature film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is the fourth Avengers movie and the fourth MCU entry directed by Anthony and Joe Russo. It is the 10th film in the MCU's Phase Three and the last part of its Infinity Saga. I didn't understand very much of that stuff I just wrote, but I totally get this last bit: Avengers: Endgame may well be on its way to becoming the highest-grossing movie ever made.

And then: Taylor Swift's new single/video, "Me," is setting records of its own. Never mind that the duet with Panic! at the Disco's Brendon Urie is maybe kinda... terrible?

ilkan şahin / Flickr

To say Beyoncé's performance at Coachella was historic feels like an understatement. In about the span of a week, Queen Bey released a two hour Netflix exclusive film (part one of her deal with the streamer) of the entire concert, a 40-track live album from the same show, which was released unexpectedly, and just for fun, she released her 2016 pop culture smash album "Lemonade" on all streaming platforms, which was originally exclusive to just Tidal.

Kit Harington / HBO

This week, the long awaited final season of Game of Thrones launched on HBO.

As more than 17 million viewers dig in for one last round, some of the Nose's most dedicated fans gather to discuss what's made this series such a hit, and what they're thinking about as the show marches toward its end.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

What is country music? If you ask Billboard, it's definitely not Lil Nas X's viral sensation, and the number one song in America, "Old Town Road." The song, which was also remixed with country star Billy Ray Cyrus, has country themes, vibes, and sounds country, but Billboard booted it off their country charts.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This week, Will Leitch, from New York Magazine, wrote that "The Era of the Old Athlete is Over." Is it? And what does this mean for the future of sports?

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The sophomore film from any new director is oftentimes held to a harsher critique than their debut movie. It’s unfair. But Jordan Peele’s directorial debut was such a profound moment in 2017 culture, that anything he created after couldn’t live to the success of Get Out.

And then there was Us.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This week, on Last Week Tonight, John Oliver tackled public shaming with perhaps the one person who has had the worst case of public shaming in recent memory, Monica Lewinsky. The interview focused on how Lewinsky survived the shaming, and she said if social media was around in the mid-90s, it could have been worse.

This week, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp suffered major worldwide outages, and Twitter previewed some possible new changes. And people took to (what else?) social media to (what else?) complain.

And: The Ringer asks the age-old question, if a TV show falls in the woods, and no one talks about it, can it be certified fresh? Or something like that.

And finally: Captain Marvel is the 21st feature film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is the ninth movie in the MCU's Phase Three. It is, chronologically, a sequel to 2011's Captain America: The First Avenger and a prequel to 2008's Iron Man. I didn't follow much of that, but I get this part: After 11 years and all those previous movies, it's the first one with a female lead.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

It's been rough going here for the famous for a little while. This week, Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek announced his stage four cancer diagnosis. Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver retired from public life because of his dementia diagnosis. And then there are the deaths: Actor Luke Perry at 52. The Prodigy frontman Keith Flint at 49. Actress Katherine Helmond at 89.

Also this hour: a look at Netflix's new not-exactly-the-X-Men, but-still-adapted-from-a-comic-book series, The Umbrella Academy.

John Eckman / flickr creative commons

It's been a year of aborted missteps for the Academy Awards. There was going to be a new Best Popular Picture category. But now there won't be. Kevin Hart was going to host. But now there's nobody. They were going to present four awards -- including Film Editing and Cinematography -- during the commercial breaks. But now they aren't.

Oh and there're the actual movies. Roma and The Favourite lead the field with 10 nominations each. A Star Is Born was once the favorite (no "u") to win in a bunch of categories. But now bettors' odds seem to favor Roma. Or maybe Green Book? And A Star Is Born? Its Best Picture hopes have fallen all the way to 40-1 against.

Loren Javier / flickr creative commons

Without even really realizing it, The Nose has been covering the 91st Oscars field since early last year, and we still don't know that much of what to expect.

We do know that, for the first time since 1989, the Oscar ceremony won't have a host. And we also know that, for literally the 91st consecutive time, there won't be a Best Popular Picture award awarded.

But of the actual awards that will actually be awarded, who'll win what? That's much harder to tell even though The Nose, and its cousin that we clumsily call "Not Necessarily the Nose," has covered 14 nominated films encompassing 64 Oscar nominations.

These're them and those conversations neatly embedded in fancy Soundcloud format or hyperlinked for your browsing convenience.

Mercy Quaye

Colin's away this week, but The Nose must go on! Or maybe "must" isn't quite right, but in this particular case, The Nose is going on -- with excellent guest hosts: The Arts Paper's Lucy Gellman and the New Haven Independent's Tom Breen.

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