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7 Movie Review: This is It Barriers shattered once again

The Cinematic Stars of Late 2009

Simon Barakat

News Executive

Ian Gibson

Staff Writer



wo days following Michael Jackson’s announcement of his This is It performances in London, tickets went on sale. Eight hundred thousand of those sold in a little over four hours! Through breaking another record, the King of Pop made history once again. Sadly, Michael Jackson died this June, only a couple of weeks before his departure to London. Some deny the fact that he is gone, but he really has left us and all that can be done is to remember Michael as the loving and caring person that he was. Ladies and gentlemen, This is It, a movie directed by Kenny Ortega, shows Michael Jackson like no one has ever seen him before. Believe it or not, if he had made it through, the King of Pop would have shattered the boundaries of human performance - a skill he has long since proven he possesses. With the best dancers gathered from all around the world, tryouts took place at the Nokia theater in Los Angeles, and in a matter of days, the group was announced. Those talented enough were chosen to become, as Kenny Ortega puts it, “an extension of the Man himself.” Speechless, most dancers broke into tears as they reflected on their victory, one of them not believing the fact that he was going to embark on the best journey of his life.

he winter season (along with summer) is one of the busiest movie times of the year. Between the rush for holiday ticket sales and the bevy of annual awards, the end-of-the-year box office tends to be filled with films both awful and sublime alike. I offer here a guide, if you will, of the movies you should forward to the most in the last months of the year. Fantastic Mr. Fox

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-Comedy/Animated -Directed by Wes Anderson -Starring George Clooney, Bill Murray, Meryl Streep -This claymation tale (taken from a Roald Dahl book of the same name) stars a top-notch voice cast and one helluva director. It’s a farmyard caper of sorts, with a bevy of animal characters plotting a daring food raid under the leadership of the Clooney’s comedic Mr. Fox. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

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The movie shows live footage of Michael Jackson rehearsing each of his best songs. From Thriller to Billie Jean, the man proved that he still owns it. His appearance on stage is simply extraordinary and his charisma goes beyond words. Always smiling, Michael Jackson adapts his vocal chords after a long absence from the music scene. Singing I Just Can’t Stop Loving You, the King has a warm moment for himself as he repeats the verse “I just can’t stop lovin…” with a beautiful and perfect tone, his voice sounding like a baby MJ. His moves are a whole new story. His hand gestures, his feet sliding, and his clothes shining, Michael Jackson beats it once again. His moves sharper than ever, the King electrified the people surrounding him, most of them jumping with excitement. The lighting was un-

believable and the effects were genius. Some of the best designers were involved in making costumes that would render you speechless. When asked about the clothing, a designer stressed that “we are working hard to push the boundaries, because this is what Michael Jackson is all about.” Millions of dollars were spent on machines and technology to bring art, reality, and faith all together on one stage. For those of you who still have not watched This is It, time is running out since the movie will remain in theaters for only two more weeks. Being part of this experience and getting a glimpse of what was going to happen in London this year is truly a wonderful opportunity. The question remains, however, could the world have handled another Michael Jackson concert?

-Fantasy -Directed by Terry Gilliam -Starring Heath Ledger, Johnny Depp, Jude Law -Terry Gilliam is known for his highly adventurous, brightly shot movies filled with fantastical visions and imaginative characters. Imaginarium looks to be no different, featuring the late Heath Ledger as an eccentric traveling showman with more than a few magical tricks up his sleeve. Men Who Stare At Goats -Comedy/Historic -Directed by Grant Heslov -Starring George Clooney, Ewan McGregor, Jeff Bridges -Clooney stars as a patriotic psychonaut in this comedy based on a true story. A story-seeking journalist stumbles across a top secret military program intent on training soldiers the dark arts of telepathy and telekinesis, leading to a satirical look at both the military complex and new-age hysteria. Sherlock Holmes -Mystery/Action -Directed by Guy Ritchie -Starring Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic character gets a modern update in the latest movie from a director known for intense, character-driven crime movies. Jude Law plays Watson, a sidekick that balances out what looks to be Sherlock’s more rough-and-tumble personality.

8 Picture of the week

Psyched-Out: Bipolar Disorder Rita El-Haddad New Executive

B The Outlook team Chairperson

Maroun Kisrwani

R e s p o n s i b l e D i - Hikmat Beaini rector Faculty Advisor

Rami Khouri


Mohamad Ya h i a Hamade

Associate Editors

Mona Bou Zeineddine Rita El Haddad

News Executives

Ian Gibson Tala Kardas


Amani Abou Harb

Art Director

Lara Atallah

Layout Editors

Lara Atallah John Hajjar Farah Sleiman

Business ers


Staff Writers


Laya Haddad Mayah Haidar Rami James Aoun Mary-Ann Awada Mohamed Awada Simon Barakat Joy Jamal Eddine Nadine Ghaith Maryam Hoballah Roula Hajjar Wajiha Jurdi Kheir Elie El Khoury Maya Terro Tarek Tutunji Rawan Yasmine Elie El Zaghrini Rana Zaher

American University of Beirut West Hall Room 208 +961 1 350 000 ext. 3193

ipolar disorder used to be known as manic depressive disorder. It is a type of mood disorder, meaning that the main problem has to do with one’s mood. To be diagnosed with bipolar disorder, one has to have experienced at least one episode of mania. A manic episode has many characteristics, including rapid speech, racing thoughts, decreased impulse control, feelings of gran-

diosity, and decreased need for sleep (3-4 hours of sleep may be enough to feel energized). Severe mania can lead to psychotic thinking. Those who experience mania may also experience depressive episodes. Thus, they suffer episodes of two extremes (or poles). Depressive episodes resemble major depression. The person may experience a persistent depressed mood, sleep and weight disturbances, anhedonia (loss of interest in seek-

ing pleasure). Severe depressive episodes can lead to suicidal ideation and attempts. People with bipolar disorder usually experience a “normal” mood between episodes. Some people, however, experience rapid cycling in which there is no break between depression and mania. Bipolar disorder appears to have a strong genetic component, as shown through twin studies. As with most disorders, how-

ever, the causes of bipolar are most likely multi-factorial and differ for each person with the disorder. With the appropriate medication and psychotherapy, people with bipolar disorder can live perfectly normal and full lives. The main medication used to treat bipolar disorder is lithium carbonate. The exact reasons why lithium carbonate is effective is still unknown.

I 3, V 42  

Issue 3, Volume 42 (Outlook Student Newspaper at AUB)