Staff Picks: Flavorwire’s Favorite Cultural Things This Week

Need a great book to read, album to listen to, or TV show to get hooked on? The Flavorwire team is here to help: in this [belated] weekly feature, our editorial staffers recommend the cultural object or experience they’ve enjoyed most in the past seven days. Click through for our picks, and tell us what you’ve been loving in the comments.

“Come Walk With Me” by M.I.A.

It’s good to finally have new M.I.A. material that’s a little easier to love than 2010’s hit-and-miss MAYA. After teasing the track for months and Twitter-blackmailing her label into giving Matangi a release date, “Come Walk With Me” gives us a hint of what execs were talking about when they sent the record back for being “too positive.” What I don’t get is why they thought positivity was a bad thing: “Come Walk With Me” is a love song that puts a clever twist on some of dance music’s most tired lyrical tropes. “You ain’t gotta throw your hands in the air,” she sings, but you probably will anyway once the song kicks into high gear around the 1:30 mark. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. — Alison Herman, Editorial Assistant

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Ginger & Rosa (dir. Sally Potter)

Sally Potter is one of my favorite filmmakers, so I’m not sure why it took me so long to see her newest movie, Ginger & Rosa. Set in early-’60s London, it follows two teen girls who grew up together, closer than sisters, only to have sex, political radicalism, and Cold War nuclear terror bring them into irreparable conflict. A more straightforward narrative film than most of Potter’s work, Ginger & Rosa is a contender for my favorite movie of 2013, for both its evocation of its particular time period and its deep understanding of the internal life of the teenage girl. I like it so much that I’m even willing to forgive it for Christina Hendricks’ terrible English accent. — Judy Berman, Editor-in-Chief

All Hail West Texas by The Mountain Goats

I picked up the finally released vinyl version of the Mountain Goats’ All Hail West Texas this past week. Probably my favorite complete album in all of John Darnielle’s extensive catalog, it will forever be one of those albums that I can only listen to on vinyl from here on out. — Jason Diamond, Literary Editor

Run Fast by The Julie Ruin

I am so, so, so excited that Kathleen Hanna is making music again, and the new incarnation of The Julie Ruin — this time as a band, rather than a Hanna solo project — has released what is possibly my favorite album of the year. It’s dancey, sassy, and incredibly fun. I just can’t get enough of Kathleen Hanna shouting in my ears. — Tyler Coates, Deputy Editor

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In a World… (dir. Lake Bell)

The fantastic Lake Bell is finally getting her due, and thank god. The underrated actress makes an incredibly strong directorial debut with In a World…, a smart comedy made especially for movie dorks that is basically a feel-good movie about fighting the patriarchy of trailer narration. If that concept isn’t enough to get you on board, the insane comedy-nerd dream cast might. Demetri Martin! Tig Notaro! Ken Marino! Nick Offerman! Rob Corddry! But mostly, if you like joy and wonder, you need to go see this as soon as possible. — Sarah Fonder, Editorial Apprentice