“The Upside” Movie review

Nick Wilson | Staff Writer

Only five years after the global hit The Untouchables(2011), Director Neil Burger and screenwriter Jon Hartmere create an Americanized spinoff of the French film. The Upside entails a story of a wealthy billionaire, Phillip (Bryan Cranston), who was recently widowed and paralyzed from the waist down due to a paragliding accident. His need for a day-to-day caretaker leads him to hire an unlikely and unqualified candidate, Dell (Kevin Hart), an ex-convict attempting to stay out of jail, as an act of rebellion and fatalism. Despite their opposing lives and struggling differences, the two quickly come across an unlikely bond. Phil introduces Dell to opera, modern art, kumquat, a line of luxury cars, and other stereotypical billionaire things; Dell urges Phil to appreciate the humbler pleasures of his lower class life including hot dogs, weed, and Aretha Franklin. Almost as if two pieces in a puzzle, the pair unables each other to rediscover the upsides to life and live life to the fullest.

While majorly focuses on the comedy and drama aspects of their relationship, The Upside is able to stay similar to its popular predecessor. However, that means that it also brings the flaws from the earlier movie— reliance on stereotypes between white and black, rich and poor, and rotations from comedical irrelevance and longing scenes to dramatic sentimentality and heart-filling encounters. Two strong performances from both Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston, however, are able to keep a viewer intrigued in the story’s character development. The undeniable chemistry between Hart and Cranston accomplishes all it can to support the character developments of both Phillip and Dell and allows for the story to unveil toward a heart-warming ending.

It’s uplifting to see another side of Kevin Hart, known most commonly for his comedic talents displayed in his own stand-up series, along with Ride Along(2014), Central Intelligence(2016), and Jumanji(2017). Don’t be alarmed; The Upside is still filled with plenty of Hart’s comedic genius, possibly even too much. Burger attempted to utilize Hart’s talents to the fullest, allowing him to crack the audience up for essentially every scene from the movie, aside for the occasional plot-shifting heart-to-heart scenes that impact the lives of Dell and Phil. Comedy tends to be overused at some parts, however, included a scene that Dell must change a catheter that last for ages and an irrelevant foreign shower scene that just seems out of place and dried out(no pun intended). This overuse of comedy seems to direct the plot off the main topic of attempting to allow Phillip to live his life in joy and for Dell to reconnect with his struggling family who he was forced to leave to do his time in prison.

    The light and elegance of the plot line still somehow shines through across the comedy of the film and still fills the hearts of the audience. An undeniable bromance between Dell and Phil does no less than perfect to save them from their own internal problems, but also provides one of the first feel-good movies of the year with as many high and low moments that can fit into the 126 minutes. It would be hard to imagine The Upside won’t rack up views in the box office and plenty of positive audience reviews.

Foreign Language Honor Societies learn traditional folk dances

Aaron Toland | Staff Writer

Last Thursday, members of several foreign language clubs learned folk dances in the Media Center. Members of Spanish National Honor Society, French National Honor Society, French Club and German Club were all present.

Former eighth grade science teacher Mrs. Fohey instructed students in a variety of traditional dances from different countries. Fohey taught students the national dance of Venezuela, a fisherman’s dance from Japan and dances from Ireland, Jamaica, Bolivia and France.

Students went to the event for a variety of reasons.

“I went because it sounded like fun and the French teacher said we would have a good time,” said French National Honor Society and French Club member Kyleigh Miklos. Of all the dances, her favorite dance was a French dance in which students got into groups of three.

Freshman and French Club member Natalie Bender attended to spend time with friends. “ I went because I have some friends in foreign language classes, and I thought it’d be something fun to try,” said Bender. “The best part was everyone just working together and laughing at our mistakes doing the dancing and just having fun as a group.”

No matter what a student’s reason, the activity provided foreign language students the opportunity to broaden their cultural experiences while having fun.

 

 

AP Government becomes year-long class

Izzy Burks | Staff Writer

AP Government has always been a one-semester course, but next year it is changing to a year-long class. Due to its crammed, fast-paced schedule, teacher Cale Hoover and social studies department head Cindy Cullom decided to stretch it out.

“We’ve been discussing this for a few years because College Board has always recommended AP Government be a full year,” Hoover said. “The social studies classes have been going through redesigns, and in November, I went to an AP conference at Butler and started learning about how things had changed. That was kind of this fighting factor I needed to convince myself that I needed to come back and work to get this changed.”

Because of this change, the class’s schedule will be at a slower pace, giving students longer to learn and retain each lesson.

“In the past, we covered 17 chapters,” Hoover said. “The concern is that we were basically teaching the material in 13 or 14 weeks because in the last few weeks of school they’re taking the AP test. This gives us the chance to take a deeper look into things now; I think it will be a better course for the kids.”

Along with the slower pace, there will also be other changes, including a few standards that have been altered.

“The college board made the requirements more specific,” Hoover said. “Just as one example, we are now required to teach 10 specific primary sources, and in the past, I only taught about half of them. Some of them are really challenging, so it’s good that we get extra time. There are more requirements that are more specific, too. The other major change is that in the past, there were four FRQs on the AP test, all formatted the same. Now there are four different types of writing that we have to teach.”

Juniors who planned on taking AP Government for one semester now have to plan on it being all year. Hoover feels that the class being year round will attract more juniors because the pace will be less intimidating.

“I thought it was frustrating because now I have to adjust my schedule accordingly, but it’s also nice because the information will be delivered at a slower pace,” junior Athulya Nair said. “I was still determined to take the class, but I know of other people who chose to take the one-semester non-AP class instead because of it.”

Some juniors have chosen to drop the class, but many see it in a positive way.

“I think the class will definitely be less stressful since the material is more spread out,” Nair said. “We will probably be able to focus more on important topics which will be good.”

AP Government becoming year-long means more time to learn and a deeper focus, and it may show in the number of next year’s seniors who take the class.

Trojan Update with Ben Greller

Each week sports writer Ben Greller will have updates on last week’s sporting events, as well as previewing this week’s matchups. Look for Greller’s update every week to get you ready for each week’s big games. This week includes perspective from sports writer Sebastian Martin.

IMG_2259Girls Basketball The Lady Trojans claimed the sectional championship this past Saturday. It was a hard fought 45-36 win over a tough Franklin Community squad. The Trojans will now move onto the regional against Bedford North Lawrence (22-5). As a fan, I would expect to be attending the games Saturday and seeing the Lady Trojans come out on top of both. The second game will be at 7:30 Saturday night against the winner of the Castle (21-4) and Bloomington South (21-3) game. Throughout the entire season, the Lady Trojans have prided themselves on playing team basketball, bringing defensive intensity each game, and having great backcourt play from seniors Emma Utterback and Ella Thompson. Expect that to continue and for the Trojans to be crowned regional champions this Saturday.

Girls Swimming and Diving This past weekend at sectionals, the relay team of Jaden King, Emma Pawlik, Gracie Marsh and Devin Trammell moved themselves on to the state meet. They will be swimming at the IUPUI natatorium at 1:00 on Saturday. Kenzie Mills also advanced in the diving portion of the sectional meet this past weekend. She will be diving tonight at Bloomington North in the regional meet at 6:00 with a berth in the state finals on the line.

Wrestling Six CG wrestlers will be moving onto the semi-state round after this past weekend’s regional. Senior Peyton Pruett and junior Brayden Littell were regional champions and will look to continue their dominate seasons. Michael Tharpe, Hayden Watson, Drake Buchanan and Jordan Latham will also be moving on to Evansville this weekend where the top four wrestlers in each weight class will advance to the state finals.

IMG_3422Boys Basketball (Perspective from Sebastian Martin)- The boys basketball team will take on the Roncalli Rebels Tuesday night in a makeup game, as well as the Lawrence Central Bearcats on Friday. The Trojans are coming off of a 14-point loss to defending state champion Warren Central last Thursday and looking for a better outcome against a Roncalli team that has a losing record. Friday’s competition will be a bit tougher, as the Trojans take on a Lawrence Central team that lost to Warren Central by only four points.

Trojan Update with Ben Greller

Each week sports writer Ben Greller will have updates on last week’s sporting events, as well as previewing this week’s matchups. Look for Greller’s update every week to get you ready for each week’s big games. This week includes perspective from sports writer Sebastian Martin.

img_1938Girls Basketball- This week is sectionals for the girls basketball team. The Lady Trojans recently had their 19-game winning streak snapped at Lawrence North this past Friday. It was an amazing regular season for the Lady Trojans and I would expect nothing less in their postseason run. They face a hard-nosed Martinsville team tonight for the third time this year, looking to make it three wins vs. the Artesians. It’s hard to beat a team three times in a year, but I see the Trojans overcoming the challenge and ending the week posing for pictures with the sectional championship trophy.

img_9856Girls Swimming and Diving- It is sectional week for the ladies swimming and diving team as well. Their hardest competition this week will be Franklin Community, which has won the last three sectional crowns. Look for the Trojans to send multiple athletes to the state meet including the 400 freestyle relay team of Emma Pawlik, Gracie Marsh, Jaden King and Devin Tramell.

Boys Swimming and Diving- With two weeks left in the season, the boys swimming and diving team will look to end their regular season with a home win over Bloomington South tonight. Looking forward, the team will have a chance to win the sectional championship this year. They will also face the powerhouse that is Franklin Community swimming, but they have a chance to take them down this year as a team.

Wrestling-  The wrestling team lost by a half point to Franklin Community at sectionals last week. However, they will move nine wrestlers onto the regional championship including sectional champions Michael Tharpe, Hayden Watson, Brayden Littell and Peyton Pruett.  Individual qualifiers for the Regional Meet also include Drake Buchanan, Sam Howe, Jordan Latham, Owen Green and Musa Ogega. The Trojans will look to avenge last week’s showing with a team regional title this weekend.

Boys Basketball (Perspective from Sebastian Martin)- After last week’s nine point loss to Lawrence North, the boys basketball team is 13-5 overall with a 1-3 conference record. This Thursday, they will look to improve their record in a contest against defending state champion Warren Central. The Warriors are 18-1 on the season, with their only loss a ten point defeat at the hands of Lawrence Central. When the Trojans met Warren previously in the championship game of the Hall of Fame Classic, Center Grove lost 52-50 in overtime. Thursday night, they will look to McDonald’s All-American Trayce Jackson-Davis to lead them to victory in what has the potential to be an excellent contest of two top notch basketball teams.

Best Buddies hosts first ever shootout during boys basketball halftime

McKenna Bryant | Staff Writer

During halftime of the boys varsity basketball game against Lawrence North last Friday, Best Buddies had the opportunity to have a shootout of their own.screen shot 2019-01-28 at 10.55.50 am

“We were trying to come up with something different for our January out of school event, and we always try to make sure our buddies participate in a typical high school event,” senior Molly Surface said.

The members of Best Buddies approached Coach Zach Hahn with the idea and worked with Hahn and other Center Grove Basketball regulars to figure out when they could hold the event and recognize the buddies.

“I think it’s important because the more people who volunteer and play with the kids, then the more the kids will play basketball and have fun,” senior Lexie Hoskins said. “They don’t want to do it if no one comes, and I know they have a better time with more people around and encouraging them.”screen shot 2019-01-28 at 10.55.57 am

The event showcased a competition between two different teams to see who could make more free throws in three minutes. Club members wanted to be prepared, so they practiced their shooting skills twice last week during STaR.

The club’s goal was to help the buddies get involved with the school and bring more awareness to their group.

“I believed we accomplished some quality basketball, some quality fun, and some quality inclusion,” Teacher Adam Gaff said.