Nick Jonas breaks “Chains” of Disney
Nov25

Nick Jonas breaks “Chains” of Disney

Toto, I have a feeling we aren’t in Disney anymore.   Breaking away from his former Disney image and a little more than a year after his band of brothers split up, Nick Jonas has finally stepped out with some new music.   His self-titled album is almost unrecognizable, showcasing some rap, R&B and soul, but continuing with the pop music his fans have always known and loved.   The 22-year-old solo artist told Rolling Stone in a recent interview that his plan is to “surprise the world with the unexpected.”   He did just that.   Jonas quickly sheds his “good boy role,” which is apparent in some of his songs that use explicit language. This may not sit well with Jonas’ long-time fans, who may not appreciate the artist’s change in style.   Before the album’s release on Nov. 11, Nick’s first single, titled “Jealous,” was played on the radio and has been in the Billboard’s Top 40 for a couple of weeks now.   The album made it to streaming services like Spotify, even before the debut, showcasing songs like “Numb,” which features the upcoming female rapper, Angel Haze.   Surprisingly, his songs have also become popular, with “Chains” having more than one million “clicks,” showing how many times it has been listened to. “Numb” is right behind, with just under a million.   Jonas also proved he’s more than good-boy-gone-bad with the questionable lyrics from his other songs.   “Warning,” “Avalanche” with Demi Lovato and “Closer” featuring Mike Posner — these are just a few of the songs that have a lot of meaning that people can relate to.   It’s pretty obvious Nick will be bringing plenty of fans from his Jonas Brother’s days, but it’s unsure if they will stay after hearing what he has to say through song.   “I’m trying to make bold moves,” Jonas told People. “If not everyone comes on that journey with me, that’s okay. Now I get to do what I want and say what I want, and that freedom feels amazing.”   Following this statement, a lyric video for his new single “Teacher” was released, and it is racier than the words that the song incorporates.   The video displays male and female models dancing provocatively with the lyrics from the song written on different parts of their body.   Scandalous.   This had fans questioning his past motives of being a good Christian guy with a purity ring, and how he could turn his image to a man singing lustful lyrics while posing in underwear.   His controversial photo spread featured jeans, a tight tank...

Read More
Interstellar: Out of this world
Nov25

Interstellar: Out of this world

A cloud of dust envelops the countryside. The earth has become unstable and will soon be unfit for humans to inhabit. The fate of mankind is left in the hands of one man, an astronaut-turned-farmer who will wrestle with whether he should save his family or the human race. This is the premise of Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi drama Interstellar.   Nolan’s films historically have deep, sometimes ambiguous plots that leave the viewer guessing until the end. Interstellar is no exception. However, the way Nolan ties it all together leaves much to be desired.   The basis of the movie is that a severe drought has caused crops to stop growing and has sent the world into a severe depression. So much so that former astronaut Cooper, played by Matthew McConaughey, has been forced to find a new career as a farmer. Cooper, however, stumbles upon a secret NASA facility where he is soon given the task of exploring space in order to find a new home for the human race.   One of the major drawbacks is the length of the movie. The initial plot setup takes nearly an hour, and the middle part of the film seems to drag on endlessly as the crew explores space. Much of the information in this section is crucial to the climax, but just seems like it could have been presented in a more timely manner.   The biggest problem with the film, however, is that it suffers from an identity crisis. During the first two-thirds, Nolan tries to stay somewhat scientific. Sure, some technologies and scientific theories that are presented may seem a bit farfetched, but not so much that the viewer couldn’t buy in. During the climax, however, the film takes a strange turn. After Cooper takes a trip through a black hole, he ends up in what seems to be some sort of alternate reality. It is never fully explained what or where this place is.   During the conclusion, Nolan does tie a few loose ends together, but many viewers will likely leave the theater with more questions than answers.   To add to the confusion, the setting of the movie is a bit unclear as well. Technological advances point to the fact that it’s set in the future, but an exact time period is not known. And while the world has spiraled into a depression, NASA has somehow found the resources to build ships that travel to other galaxies.   However, if it’s possible to look past the gauntlet of plot holes, what’s left is an entertaining film on a multitude of levels.   Great action scenes...

Read More
War film causes ‘Fury’ in box office
Nov07

War film causes ‘Fury’ in box office

A white-saddled horse escorts a German officer through a corpse-littered battlefield. Silhouettes of burning tanks trace along the morning light. David Ayer’s opening scene of Fury invites us to April 1945.   The Allied Forces advance further into Germany as the final months of World War II come upon them. Part of that effort includes the film’s focus: the crew of a M4A3E8 Sherman tank, which was given the name “Fury.”   While it displays the brutal realities of World War II, most of the movie details the bonding of the crew.   “One thing that made it stand above other war movies is the fact that it showed how the soldiers act during war,” junior business management major Troy Robinson said. “War is not a fun place to be in, and they really showed how it effects the soldiers.”   Fury’s commander, Sgt. Don “Wardaddy” Collier (Brad Pitt) leads his diverse group: Boyd “Bible” Swan (Shia LeBeouf), Grady “Coon Ass” Travis (Jon Bernthal) and Trini “Gordo” Garcia (Michael Pena) through swaths of German ground and SS troops.   History major Joshua Hosack said he marveled at the accuracy of one scene in which the Fury crew is joined by two Stuart tanks from another American platoon in a fight against a much stronger German Tiger tank.   These Tiger tanks were the pennacle beings of Axis firepower, showing off their dominance first in North Africa — occasionally Wardaddy refers to his time fighting Axis troops in Africa.   Movie-goers find themselves perplexed at this dynamic character. He is certainly cold; he is a veteran of the war, despiser of all things Nazi and a ruthless killer. Yet somehow, the film allows the Pitt character to prove himself a noble leader. His one source of pride is keeping his crew alive despite insurmountable odds.   “World War II was an emotional time and place,” Senior Christian Studies major Rusty Pregeant said. “The attitudes that the actors portrayed and the setting showed that.”   It isn’t Collier’s point of view that tells the story. The film is a right of passage for young clerk, Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman). He receives orders to join the Fury crew as assistance driver. Ellison soon finds out why, as Collier hands him a rag and a bucket of hot water. The seat where the previous assistant sat is covered in blood and body parts.   Ayer leaves us wondering whether or not this tank will be the crew’s guard or grave.   “I am trained to type 60 words a minute, not trained to machine gun dead bodies,” Ellison complains on his first outing....

Read More
Cru Culture: Swift brings buyers ‘Out of the Woods’
Nov07

Cru Culture: Swift brings buyers ‘Out of the Woods’

“Where were you when…?”   People ask that question after significant events in a state, nation or world’s timeline.   So where were you when 1989, Taylor Swift’s groundbreaking album was released last week?   The country music princess officially traded in her cowgirl boots for red lipstick and Keds. Love her or hate her, the much-awaited track list took over social media, covering every part of iTunes on T-Day.   Her fifth contribution is the first album outside of the country genre she honed as a teenager. In the words of Tay herself, “haters gonna hate,” but the music world should be praising the star for rejuvenating the face of the entire industry.   In case you’ve been wrapped up in studying and going to class, a really big thing happened this month in terms of music.   No artists went platinum in 2014. Let that sink in for a moment. One Direction didn’t sell a million copies of their CD, the qualification of a “platinum” title. Even Beyonce, Queen B, couldn’t rake in enough purchases to make the lofty cut. The only one to achieve the big million was Olaf and friends in Disney’s Frozen soundtrack. Apparently, people want to build snowmen and buy the CD to sing along while doing so.   The last artist to sell 1 million copies in a week was Taylor with her previous release, Red.   And now she did it again.   So, over the course of hundreds of days, no artist hit a million. But T.S. did — she literally outsold the entire industry in one week. That deserves a little bit of attention, or a lot, depending on how much you love the blonde bombshell.   Crusaders purchased their own copies of the polaroid-inspired collection, posting selfies via social media and tweeting lyrics to their favorite tracks. Even those who would rather listen to “Let it Go” than “Shake it Off” knew about the big day. When you know, you know.   The collection as a whole provides nostalgic hints of the 90s and early 2000s, which appeals to Taylor’s young adult audience, Crusaders included.   And though several tracks have traditional T-Swift lyrics with an entirely new sound, the work disappoints in terms of originality. Yes, it’s original for Taylor. But very few songs provide anything different to pop music.   Sticking to what she does best, Swift pens lyrics about ex, Harry Styles in “Style,” a witty stab at the boyband star. Though it may hurt Harry a bit, the track is one of the best and does present a new side of Taylor that the...

Read More
Homecoming week brings joy to campus
Oct23

Homecoming week brings joy to campus

Homecoming. It’s a time for celebrating the past, living in the moment and excitement for the future.   During the week leading up to homecoming weekend, students participated in a sand volleyball tournament and hung out at Fest-of-Fun. They also spread out their blankets on the field at Crusader Stadium and bundled up to watch Little Giants.   The weekend officially kicked off on Friday evening with an alumni dinner in Millennium Oaks Park. After dinner and a carnival, alumni, students, parents, faculty and staff headed to W.W. Walton Chapel to watch Stunt Night and the crowning of the 2014 Homecoming king and queen.   Senior international business major Johnathon Kendall and senior interdiciplinary studies major Sarah Payne were voted by the student body as this year’s royalty.   Payne said being voted queen is “really overwhelming.”   “I wasn’t expecting this, and I certainly can’t describe how it feels right now. But it’s really great to know that UMHB students care about each other and these opportunities are available to us,” she said.   Stunt Night is a competition between all four of the classes that incorporates a skit and original song within a theme that is selected by each year’s Steering Committee.   Senior Katelyn Holm has been a director all four years for her class.   “I cant even begin to describe was Stunt Night has meant to me over the years…. I’ll never forget sitting around a table freshman year, trying to write an award-winning script with strangers. Then I look at us now, doing this production with the same people, some of my closest friends. It’s amazing. I’m so proud of my class,” she said.   The freshmen portrayed the story of Jacqueline and Aaron as they went through their first year at UMHB.   While they came across some bumps in the road, the class found they could do anything in unity.   The sophomores performed their rendition of Horton Hears a Who where Horton encourages his jungle friends to believe in something they can’t see—Cruville.   The junior class told the story of Ted who works so hard to win everything on campus to get a girl’s attention, but ends up losing his friends in the process. Ted eventually learns his lesson and finds that winning isn’t always everything.   The seniors performed a tribute to UMHB and told the story of Alec, a senior who is afraid to leave the university he loves so much. In the end, Alec finds that there’s a time to move on.   The senior class walked away with awards for best costume, song, dance and...

Read More
‘Sader serves local ministry strokes of genius
Oct23

‘Sader serves local ministry strokes of genius

Stoke by stroke, the artist layers rich colors of paint on a massive wall. Alternating between sitting, standing and climbing a ladder, he works for hours at a time on a mural of Jesus flanked by his followers.   Sophomore graphic design major Edgar Ortiz embarked on a daunting creative mission after being chosen by Hershall Seals, chairperson of the art department at the university.   “Dr. Chuck Taylor … former UMHB faculty member and volunteer for Christians Touching Lives for Christ called me … to consider re-designing the old mural,” Seals said.   Taylor presented a challenge: Creating a life-like depiction of Christ on the wall of CTLFC, a local food and clothing bank located in Temple.   The organization wanted a visual representation of their group’s mission and decided to commission a talented, local artist. They then decided an image of Jesus helping others would effectively convey their own purpose, as well allude to the faith behind their cause.   Seals said, “Edgar Ortiz made his talents known his freshman year, so his talent and proven work ethic made him an ideal artist for the mural.”   After being selected by administration, Ortiz followed the requirements set before him, choosing an existing work to model his own after, and taking the wisdom of Seals to heart.   “We collaborated on a design … and worked together one evening to draw it on the wall, and Edgar took it from there,” Seals said.   By adding more dimensions, changing the background and elongating the piece to fit his work space, Ortiz made the painting his own. And though he didn’t choose the subject matter himself, he effectively expressed his own taste through the work.   “I did have freedom in what style I wanted to paint it. I’ve always liked to be as accurate and realistic as I can, but have also liked to use lots of color, with dark shades,” Ortiz said. “Although I painted another painting, I still had lots of fun in challenging myself to make my own version of an already-excellent painting. I learned a lot by looking at the colors in the original work and how they were used.”   Ortiz began the project this summer and continued to work throughout the semester when he wasn’t attending class or working.   After a total of 15 days consisting of three to eight hours each, the Bible story came to life.   The 80 hours of work paid off, and Ortiz expressed his happiness with the product.   “The most difficult part of the painting was getting the right colors for the faces and...

Read More
Page 21 of 73« First...10...1920212223...304050...Last »