What’s Happening: CPO Movie Screening of “Avengers: Infinity War”

Greetings UCLA students and faculty! We at the Writing Success Program would like to remind our readers that the Community Programs Office is hosting a screening of Avengers: Infinity War this Thursday, October 10th. The event opens at 6pm with food and the movie starts screening at 7:30pm, in Wilson Plaza. The food and screening are of course, free. The Facebook event page can be found … Continue reading What’s Happening: CPO Movie Screening of “Avengers: Infinity War”

Back to the Future Today

Today is October 21, 2015, the day Marty McFly flew into the future in the glorious film Back to the Future II. For anyone unfamiliar with the film series (which should be on your watch list) here is a brief recap. The Back to the Future series follows Marty McFly in his adventures with Emmett Brown, otherwise known as Doc, as they travel back and forth through time. … Continue reading Back to the Future Today

Hip-Hop Goes Broadway: Turning Big Hits into Classics

I’m a big fan of Broadway musicals. You can consider them my weakness. So when I saw Superfruit, a dynamic duo also part of Pentatonix (an award winning music group), remixing hits like “99 Problems” (Jay Z) and “Look At Me Know” I was freaking out, inspired almost. Some, if not all, Broadway musicals can be a little bit of a reach for the general population. … Continue reading Hip-Hop Goes Broadway: Turning Big Hits into Classics

Sweden’s Mans Zelmerlow Wins Eurovision Song Contest

On Sunday, Sweden’s Mans Zelmerlow won the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest with his electro-pop ballad “Heroes,” which he performed while dancing in front of a black screen with animated gnomes. Yes. Animated gnomes. Created in 1956, Eurovision is the an annual televised song competition held primarily among member countries of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). It is one of the most popular non-sporting events in … Continue reading Sweden’s Mans Zelmerlow Wins Eurovision Song Contest

Jay Z and Beyonce Allegedly Bail Out Baltimore Protesters

The news just about broke the internet: music’s most famous couple, Jay-Z and Beyonce, reportedly bailed out numerous individuals arrested during this month’s Baltimore Uprising. Many of the people jailed were youth: Allen Bullock, a teen who turned himself in after smashing a police car window, was being held on $500,000 bail and facing a possible life sentence. This caused an uproar, especially since his bail was … Continue reading Jay Z and Beyonce Allegedly Bail Out Baltimore Protesters

Daredevil: The Man Without Fear

Comic books!  Yay!  In case you’re not getting enough superheroes to scratch that particular itch of your inner child, Netflix recently released Marvel’s version of an angsty, guilt-ridden vigilante who grinds his axes on the faces of villainous villainy as a form of healthy cathartic release of long-suppressed daddy/mommy issues: Daredevil.  If you thought DC’s Batman character a wee bit on the I’m-so-guilty-over-my-parents’-death-I-wear-a-mask-and-beat-up-bad-guys, then you’ll … Continue reading Daredevil: The Man Without Fear

Curb Your Enthusiasm

Curb Your Enthusiasm was the first comedy show to indelibly influence my sense of timing and narrative structure. It’s a laugh-out-loud show in which a caricatured version of Larry David (who wrote and co-created Seinfeld) goes through post-Seinfeld life in Santa Monica and New York, finding himself in absurd circumstances brought on either by himself or his friends (who are equally, arguably more, outrageous characters), and spending the entirety … Continue reading Curb Your Enthusiasm

Stars and Music on a Friday Morning

This Pop Culture post is dedicated to the sites I have found while roaming (or stumbling) through StumbleUpon. For more information on this site please visit their website. Whenever I need mesmerizing, I visit a website called 100,000 Stars. It’s melodic music, gives me an eerie feeling as I sit in front of my screen, imagining I’m someplace else, somewhere up there…in space. As you can infer from the … Continue reading Stars and Music on a Friday Morning

The Revolutionary Possibilities of Nollywood

Celebrated Kenyan writer, Binyanvaga Wainana, author of One Day I Will Write About This Place, perhaps best known for his satrical essay, “How to Write about Africa,” said in his talk ‘South To South – is the Metropolis still the Place to Publish?’ that: As decolonizing act, you can’t get better than Nollywood. Many of us agreed. Nollywood – Nigeria’s film industry, the most prolific producer of films in … Continue reading The Revolutionary Possibilities of Nollywood

“Don’t Cash Crop on My Cornrows”

“What would America be like if we loved black people as much as we love black culture?” This is the question that Amandla Stenberg, an actress best known for her role as Rue in the Hunger Games, raises in the above video. She discusses the rampant cultural appropriation occurring in the entertainment industry, as white celebrities eagerly adopt black fashion, hairstyles, vernacular, and dances while … Continue reading “Don’t Cash Crop on My Cornrows”

The Definitive King Arthur

What does it mean to be “definitive?” Traditionally, the term has been in use in literary criticism for quite some time to indicate a work that is authoritatively final.  For example, there are many translations of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight floating about out there in the ether, but scholars generally agree that J.R.R. Tolkien’s (yes, that Tolkien) translation – first published back in … Continue reading The Definitive King Arthur

The Spoken Word of Andrea Gibson

Spoken word poetry is a genre with specific and more or less ubiquitous traits: it has the imagistic logic of poetry (feelings, observations, arguments colliding and stacking like a freeway pile-up) and the theatricality of voice performance (which irrigates the text with nuanced tone and charge). It’s a genre perfect and custom-fit for raw expression, something in between literary poetry and song. It gives the speaker … Continue reading The Spoken Word of Andrea Gibson


At this year’s Oscars, which took place last Sunday, Boyhood actress Patricia Arquette uttered the following during her acceptance speech: “It’s time for us. It’s time for women. Equal means equal. People think we have equal rights; we don’t. Until we pass a constitutional amendment, we won’t have anything changed. It’s time for all women in America and all the men who love women and all … Continue reading #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen

7 Reasons Why Orphan Black is Better than Your Favorite TV Show

“Orphan Black is a wild science fiction ride that incorporates dramatic sensibilities which can turn from suspenseful to light at a moment’s notice. Anchored by Tatiana Maslany’s brilliant multi-role performance, Orphan Black is as densely-layered, thought-provoking, and wildly entertaining as ever.

– Critic Consensus, Rotten Tomatoes™” Continue reading 7 Reasons Why Orphan Black is Better than Your Favorite TV Show

Charlie Kaufman, One of Hollywood’s Best Screenwriters

The face of movies tends to be actors and directors–many behind-the-scenes contributors go unnoticed in the public’s myopic obsession with celebrities. While it goes without saying that all these contributors are essential to moviemaking, one in particular–the screenwriter–is absurdly overlooked. After all, the screenwriter is where the story originates. Everything else fleshes out the skeletal structure the story provides. There are some screenwriters who’ve made names … Continue reading Charlie Kaufman, One of Hollywood’s Best Screenwriters

Ackee & Saltfish

This trailer for Ackee & Saltfish started making waves on social media in the second half of last year. Ackee & Saltfish is a film about two Black British girls, Olivia and Rachel … honestly, I can’t summarize it better than the filmmaker, Cecile Emeke, has on the website: On a sunny Sunday afternoon Olivia and Rachel carry out their usual routine…absolute relaxation, however when the time comes to … Continue reading Ackee & Saltfish

“Glory” Receives Oscar Nomination

One of the most striking parts of this song is the line that states “Justice for all just ain’t specific enough”. In the midst of police brutality and the killings of numerous unarmed black males over the past few months,  a profound movement has gained widespread support: #blacklivesmatter. However, it has received its fair share of criticism, and many people have pushed back with the … Continue reading “Glory” Receives Oscar Nomination