Tag: Natalie Keane

Wonder Movie Review

Words: Natalie Keane

Based on the bestselling novel by R. J. Palacio, the movie Wonder hit theaters on November 17, sharing a message of complete authenticity to viewers. For a movie seemingly aimed at kids, Wonder does an unusually good job of bringing depth and underlying wisdom to the screen, while still being clear enough for younger viewers. With important life lessons threaded through each individual character’s story, it surprisingly could appeal to not just the movie’s aimed demographic of kids, but to much older people as well.

Thankfully, the movie proved to be a near exact replica of the book, and it was a relief to know that the author of the book had a large part in producing the on-screen adaptation. Just as the book is written, the movie begins showing the seemingly minor life of a kid who desperately wants to fit in, but then expands into a movie about community, kindness, and how the decisions we make can affect people in ways we don’t know.

The message of Wonder is clear. The year-long story surrounds 10-year-old Auggie Pullman, who has a facial deformity and is going to public school for the first time. As he navigates through the fifth grade, we watch his character as well as many of the other children at his school go from being closed off and unwilling to accept change to people who work to see beyond their own differences and connect with each other. The movie starts off in Auggie’s point of view, but as the story progresses, the perspectives switch between each of the characters and their stories relative to Auggie’s. Through these differing perspectives from the same year, director Stephen Chbosky doesn’t fail to bring a sense of warmth and genuineness to the screen.

It is often forgotten that sometimes there can be more to a movie than just the entertaining aspect, and Wonder represents this perfectly. Once you dig down to the very roots of why this story was made, you find that there is so much more than what this film seems to be on the surface. It is a lesson that so many people have difficulty learning, which is a lesson of hardship, acceptance, and ultimately, how the choices we make show who we truly are, not anything else.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Centennial’s Nutcracker Production

Photos: Camryn Desai / Words: Natalie Keane

On the nights of November 30 and December 1, the seats of Centennial’s auditorium were filled for the dance department’s production of The Nutcracker. When the orchestra began to play and the curtains opened, the show immediately captured the attention of everyone.

The production featured amazing choreography, and it also showcased music from members of Centennial’s orchestra, wind ensemble, and choir groups Bella Voce and Madrigals. Each part of the show fit together perfectly, and it made the performance a memorable experience to watch. The music was performed flawlessly and it was what told the story of The Nutcracker. It brought the characters to life, making the audience even more drawn to the show’s message.

The hard work and effort that was put into this production in every aspect, whether it be through dance or music, was apparent, and each dancer on stage showed a tremendous amount of dedication to their roles. The energy that the performers put into The Nutcracker over the past few months really showed through their enthusiasm on stage, and the amazing performances from the dance and music departments definitely made this show a success.

 

 

 

 

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Stranger Things Season Two Review

Words: Natalie Keane

As the end of October rolled around, season two of Netflix’s hit show Stranger Things was released, giving its millions of fans a look at the new problems arising in the fictional small town of Hawkins, Indiana. The story of the second season is now set during Halloween of 1984, one year after the disappearance of Will Byers. We get to see the familiar adventure of Byers and his friends, as they are determined to uncover the supernatural element they believe to be underneath their town. Last season was simply an introduction to the Upside Down. Now, the characters are working to rescue Byers from an even bigger entity that threatens to change the course of all of their lives, while also trying their hardest to convince everyone else that there is a problem.

While new characters are introduced at the start, unlikely heroes are revealed as the season progresses. Old characters show development we never expected, and most everyone agrees that the new characters prove to make season two better than season one.

“I’d have to say my favorite part is the characters,” said Emily Hollwedel, a freshman at Centennial, who has been a fan of the show since season one, “when I watch the characters build relationships with each other, it helps develop their personalities and even change their view of their world for the better.”

The unusual cross of fantasy and horror mixed with 80s nostalgia is something that many people love most about the show, and there is no doubt that the familiar feeling of excitement and thrill in season one carries directly into season two. Stranger Things is a rare example of a show that takes the best qualities of classic 80s films, such as E.T, Aliens, Jurassic Park, and more, and combines them into one universe for old and young fans alike to enjoy.

“The mix of 80s nostalgia with the already fascinating plot is an easy pull for all sorts of people to enjoy the show,” Hollwedel said. “The [feeling] of childhood and a whole life ahead brings adults and kids together to enjoy a show that appeals to people of all ages.”

As Stranger Things’ sophomore season comes to a close, there is no indication that the characters we’ve come to love are disappearing any time soon. With their biggest trial yet to be faced, the show’s final two seasons have the potential to reveal even more secrets, and set the story up for its ultimate climax.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Centennial’s Empire Mock Trial Club

Words: Natalie Keane

Empire Mock Trial is a club in which students learn to debate with each other while gaining perspective on world topics and issues. The students of the club use critical thinking skills while simulating a real court case.

From September 21 to 25, the students of this club attended an International Empire Mock Trial competition taking place in Atlanta, Georgia. The group, made up of 17 students including two team captains, competed against teams from around the country and the world in the span of five days, where they put their skills to the test in a case involving prison negligence.

“The best part about going to an international competition is getting to meet new people and getting closer with those you know,” junior Mary Slattery said, who serves as the team’s attorney, “[The] competition is intense and requires a lot of work, so we spend a lot of time with our team.”

While in Atlanta, they also toured the CNN world headquarters and met with CNN10 host Carl Azus, who spent time with them and talked about working at CNN.

The team had been preparing for the competition since June, but while Centennial did not end up coming in first, the trip was much more to them than beating their opponents. It was about team bonding, building their strengths and having fun.

“It’s more than just getting a trophy at the end of the day,” said Kelli McDonough-Schlehr, Empire Mock Trial’s teacher sponsor.

“They’re learning public speaking skills, they’re enhancing their confidence, [and] they’re also learning how to work as a team,” McDonough-Schlehr said.

Mock Trial is a team-oriented activity, which means it’s not just one person’s score that relates to how the team does. Everyone’s participation matters, and when someone faults, the support system falls into place.

“When one person was struggling, other people were there to help that individual,” said McDonough-Schlehr. “So, it’s really nice to see that.”

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Centennial’s Aquila Literary Magazine Club

Words: Natalie Keane

Aquila is Centennial’s literary magazine, that highlights art, photography and writing from Centennial’s student body. In the magazine, students are able to showcase their own creative expression to the Centennial community.

To submit your own artwork to the magazine, you can access the submission page through centennial aquila.weebly.com. Literary pieces submitted must be less than 2,000 words. Aquila will be accepting submissions until February 9, 2018. If your submission is accepted, you will be provided with a free copy of the magazine.

On Friday, October 27, from 2:30 to 4:30pm, Aquila is holding a coffeehouse in the cafeteria, featuring performances by students. The cost is $5 at the door. All money goes towards the magazine, and coffee and food will be served.

In addition, Aquila is holding a book sale on November 10. On November 3, book drop-offs will be set up around the school. You will be able to donate new and gently used books at these locations. For any questions, please contact Ms. Mancini in Room 203.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.