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To Do: July 12–July 26, 2017

Twenty-five things to see, hear, watch, and read.

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Movies
1. See The Little Hours
Hail Mary. 
Nunsploitation! It’s rarely as hilariously deadpan as in Jeff Baena’s loose adaptation of stories from Boccaccio’s The Decameron about sexual high jinks in a medieval Tuscan monastery. See nuns Aubrey Plaza, Alison Brie, and Kate Micucci toss back their habits and throw themselves on an alternately panicky and delighted Dave Franco. It’s irreverent, but the characters are such innocents you might find yourself giving thanks to a God who forgives all iniquity. —David Edelstein
In theaters now.

TV
2. Watch Game of Thrones
Oh, yes, child. 
The fate of Westeros hangs in the balance as competing forces jockey for control of the Iron Throne; meanwhile, the threat of the White Walkers grows in prominence in the icy North and … Ahem. Sorry! It’s a testament to the continuing allure of Game of Thrones that it’s hard to describe the series without lapsing into George R.R. Martin’s ominous locutions. Very little is known about the new season, but you’ll be watching. —Matt Zoller Seitz
HBO, July 16.

Pop
3. Listen to Lust for Life
Seeing the light. 
Lana Del Rey makes drowsy, nostalgic pop that’s hauntingly ephemeral, like a memory of a dream or a drug high. Her new album promises more of the same, with guest spots from A$AP Rocky, the Weeknd, and Stevie Nicks. —Craig Jenkins
Polydor/Interscope, July 21.

Classical
4. See Cloud River Mountain
Cultural immersion. 
It took a lot of intercontinental teamwork to yield this quasi-operatic production of Chinese stories set to an eclectic score. The Chinese pop star Gong Linna and New York’s Bang on a Can All-Stars perform a score jointly composed by Lang Luo and Bang on a Can founders Julia Wolfe, Michael Gordon, and David Lang. —Justin Davidson
Gerald W. Lynch Theater, July 14 and 15.

Pop
5. See Anik Khan
City kid makes good.
Anik Khan is a Bengali immigrant raised in the melting pot of Queens and educated by Jay-Z and Nas. His new album, Kites, melds Bollywood samples with intoxicating soundscapes and club-ready bangers. Catch him in his first hometown headlining show.
Rough Trade, July 18.

Art
6. Go to 56 Henry
Downtown jewel box. 
Since relocating from the West Village, this teeny Chinatown gallery has become one of the best spaces in New York. Its exhibition history already includes excellent young artists Richard Tinkler, Ryan Wallace, and Cynthia Talmadge, and longtime savant Kate Shepherd is coming in the fall. Currently, Sam Moyer places a paradoxical stained-glass brick window over the gallery, a perfect art metaphor for seeing in but being blocked out. —Jerry Saltz
56 Henry Street.

Books
7. Read A House Among the Trees
Estate battles.   
Though Julia Glass based her children’s-author protagonist, Mort Lear, very loosely on Maurice Sendak, Lear lives and breathes on his own. Never mind that the plot only gets going once the fictional legend falls off a ladder and dies. A fight over his legacy ensues, showing off Glass’s signature talent for rendering characters as full as any you’d actually meet. —Boris Kachka
Pantheon.

Movies
8. Go to Future Imperfect: The Uncanny in Science Fiction
Is there anybody out there?
This series features 70 sci-fi films from all over the world — 22 countries, including the U.S., the Soviet Union, China, India, and Cameroon — all set in the present or near-present, from Georges Méliès to Buster Keaton to Godard to Kathryn Bigelow, from melodramas to avant-garde opuses by Michael Snow and Chris Marker. Upcoming: Michael Almereyda’s Marjorie Prime (July 21), The Hunger Games precursor Battle Royale (July 22, 27), and Joseph Sargent’s prescient Colossus: The Forbin Project (July 22, 28). —D.E.
MoMA, July 17 through August 31.

Theater
9. See 15 Villainous Fools
A riotous good time. 
Writers-directors-performers Olivia Atwood and Maggie Seymour bring their show back to the city after a run at FringeNYC last summer. The two play two sets of twin brothers, crazy sisters, a dangerous doctor, and more in this hilarious romp based on Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors.
The PIT Loft, through August 19.

Art
10. Go to Rubin Museum Block Party
Make some noise. 
The annual performance and art-making festival returns with a full schedule of family-friendly events, including sets by the Brooklyn Express Drumline, garba dance by India Home, and special museum tours and in-gallery sound meditation experiences.
West 17th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues, July 16.

Movies
11. Go to Japan Cuts
Far Eastern promises.
This is the wildest annual NYC film festival, which reflects the Japan Society’s commitment to the rollicking, no-holds-barred nature of the country’s film culture. I haven’t seen the opening-night film, Yoshihiro Nakamura’s playful ninja period drama MUMON: The Land of Stealth, but can enthusiastically recommend the baseball drama Over the Fence with Japanese matinee idol Joe Odagiri (in attendance) and Sion Sono’s outlandish Anti-Porno.  —D.E.
Japan Society, July 13–23.

Theater
12. See A Midsummer Night’s Dream
The course of free Shakespeare never did run smooth. 
Things have gotten hairy this season at the Delacorte, but it’s hard to imagine anyone getting mad at this enchanting comedy (still, who knows?). For one thing, the cast is a knockout: Fresh off her incredible run in Sunday in the Park With George, Annaleigh Ashford stars as Helena; Phylicia Rashad is Titania; and Richard Poe plays Oberon.
Delacorte Theater, July 11 through August 13.

Pop
13. See Turning the Tables Live
Excellence abounds.   
Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors heats up the plazas and in-between spaces, starting with a concert by some of the singers and musicians who have earned a spot on NPR Music’s soon-to-be-public list of the 150 greatest albums by women. Come, listen, and argue about who should and shouldn’t have made the cut. —J.D.
Damrosch Park Bandshell, July 26.

TV
14. Watch 30 for 30: Mike and the Mad Dog
Credit where due. 
The sports network’s brilliant 30 for 30 program continues with a rare documentary that steps outside the world of sports to concentrate on the media that cover it. “Mike and the Mad Dog,” Mike Francesa and Chris Russo’s lively, contentious show on New York’s WFAN 660, dominated East Coast sports radio for two decades, spawning an entire subgenre and arguably enabling the existence of the majority of talk shows on the very cable network that bankrolled this documentary. —M.Z.S.
ESPN, July 13.

Theater
15. See Measure for Measure
Breaking the mold.
Shakespeare’s dark comedy about virtue, justice, and the abuse of power is one of his so-called problem plays, which defy genre categorization. Director Simon Godwin of London’s National Theatre employs audience participation in this updated production, set in a debaucherous modern-day Vienna. 
Theatre for a New Audience, through July 16.

Art
16. See Sturtevant
The art world’s Bram Stoker.
This extraordinary three-floor outing of just 14 works by the late Elaine Sturtevant is the most breathtaking gallery exhibition ever staged of this complex foundational artist. Encompassing work from her 1970 Warhol “Flowers” to the 2007 video-projection of a running dog, “Sturtevant” reveals a true creator of new forms, able to inhabit any artistic organism and make it her own. —J.S.
Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, 439 West 127th Street, through September 9

Storytelling
17. Go to Generation Women
Five ladies laughing.
The second installment of this new, generous monthly series, featuring five women in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, and 60s-plus, is themed “What I Learned About My Mother.” Hosted by author Georgia Clark, the evening will include original pieces from actress Madeleine Martin, comedian Rhonda Hansome, and others.             
Wythe Hotel Screening Room, July 12.

Theater
18. See Hamlet
Return of the Prince. 
After director Sam Gold’s production of Hamlet with Oscar Isaac was canceled last summer, you may have feared you’d never see the actor monologuing to a skull (unless Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi takes a dramatic turn?). But fear not, the show has been revived by the Public, now with Keegan-Michael Key joining as Horatio. Another notable cast member: Gayle Rankin, who currently appears as Sheila the She Wolf on Netflix’s Glow, as Ophelia.
Public Theater, opens July 13.

Pop
19. See Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams
Carry that weight.
The married duo, who have been called “the First Couple of Americana,” will preview songs from their forthcoming album, Contraband Love, at these two shows in advance of their fall tour with Shawn Colvin. The album takes a darker turn than their 2015 debut, with heavy themes of addiction and betrayal, and a guest appearance by their frequent collaborator, the late Levon Helm.
Joe’s Pub, July 12 and 13.

Movies
20. Go to Ford to City: Drop Dead — New York in the ’70s
No Disney properties in sight!
One of the most potent tabloid headlines ever — the Daily News’ October 30, 1975, “Ford to City: Drop Dead” — is the springboard for this Film Forum series that takes you back to an NYC on the verge of implosion. See dead-end classics like Midnight Cowboy and blaxploitation (a double bill of Shaft and Super Fly). Plus: rare theatrical screenings of Hal Ashby’s The Landlord and Irvin Kershner’s Loving! —D.E.
Film Forum, through July 27.

Classical
21. Hear The Singing Heart
Break into song.
On Mostly Mozart’s opening night, the Young People’s Chorus of New York City makes its festival debut with a set of Mozart-era folk songs and spirituals, leading into Beethoven’s celebratory Choral Fantasy. —J.D.
David Geffen Hall, July 25 and 26.

Pop
22. Go to PS1’s Warm Up
Stay hydrated.
PS1’s fun-in-the-sun dance-party season is under way, and this summer the space is enveloped by photoluminescent textiles from Jenny Sabin Studio. July 22’s U.K.-heavy lineup features the hypermelodies of producer Dark0, the trance party of Evian Christ (who worked as a producer on Kanye’s Yeezus), and drum-and-bass legend Roni Size. Upcoming, catch Venus X (August 5) and DJ Haram (August 19).
MoMA PS1, Saturdays through September 2.

Cabaret
23. See Samantha Barks
She can do better than that.
You might remember Samantha Barks as Éponine in 2012’s film version of Les Misérables, singing “On My Own” in the rain. She also recently starred in a London production of The Last 5 Years. Expect selections from her shows on these two evenings and likely other songs you’ve belted out in the shower.
Feinstein’s/54 Below, July 21 and 22.

Pop
24. See Fushitsusha
Big in Japan.
Keiji Haino was already a name in the mid-’70s Tokyo underground when he formed Fushitsusha, a psychedelic free-rock outfit. Expect a live show full of feedback, on a stage built from Americana for “Grand Ole Opera” — a two-month-long installation at this Red Hook art and performance space.
Pioneer Works, July 19 and 20.

Pop
25. Listen to Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star and Quazarz vs. The Jealous Machines
Double feature. 
Shabazz Palaces is an indie hip-hop project masterminded by Ishmael Butler, formerly known as Butterfly of Digable Planets. This summer’s release of twin concept albums has Ish turning his knack for yarns about street smarts into a space opera.  —C.J.
Sub Pop, July 14. 


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