Hey there Weekenders!
And oh, hey August . . . we hardly knew ye. Really not sure what happened there. Was in the hammock for what seemed like two minutes and all of a sudden the lawn is long again and September is close enough to hear us talking about it. The scent of suntan lotion is getting rudely pushed out by pumpkin spice fumes, the shadows of the trees will start leaning a little harder against the walls, and the buses will all fill with backpacks attached to half-awake people. Oh, also the Amazon is burning. The other one. Seems worth mentioning.
Are we having fun yet? (Well, we’d better be.) To that end, here are some ideas for squeezing whatever juice you can out of our waning summer. Let’s do this. (Or these, rather.)
MOVING PICTURE: Globe contributor Tom Russo gives 2½ mildly charmed stars to “The Peanut Butter Falcon,” the latest film from erstwhile documentary directors Tyler Nilson and Michael Schwartz, starring Dakota Johnson, Shia LaBeouf, and Zack Gottsagen as a man whose Down syndrome does little to derail his “aspirations for pro-wrestling glory.” Will he wrestle? (Probably?) As Russo writes/warns, it’s an “easy-going odyssey” with a “quaintly straightforward story line” and “no real surprises” (I mean, apart from LaBeouf getting work), and you know what? That sounds just great right now, frankly. (So does Peanut Butter Wolf, which I think would be fun to listen to together.) Now screening.
JUST JOSHIN: You’ll notice that oftentimes my comedy pick usually ends up toward the bottom of our weekly blurb-haul. That’s not on purpose and I don’t know why I do that, and it ends today. Laughing is important! Especially right now. And there’s possibly no finer source for laughs this weekend than “Daily Show” writer Josh Johnson, who comes to Laugh Boston (that’s a suggestion, not an order) on Friday and Saturday. Though, being honest, he’ll probably reserve the timely/newsy/topical stuff for that sweet, sweet Comedy Central paycheck. As Globe comedy contributor Nick A. Zaino III points out, Johnson’s stand-up is more concerned with “jokes about how he was terrified by an opossum or getting bullied by New York City middle-schoolers as an adult than a riff on President Trump wanting to buy Greenland.” Grab tickets here.
(NEAR) HIT PARADE: Also important is dancing — even if it’s just that weird shimmy-thing you bust out at weddings. That counts. Getting you on the dancefloor may be like pulling mussels from a shell, but I urge you to bring those moves to South Shore Music Circus on Sunday for the one and only Squeeze, master-crafters of pop classics that respectfully opted never to destroy the charts. “Hits are overrated,” notes Globe contributor Marc Hirsh in his chat with the band’s Glenn Tilbrook, noting unforgettable earworms like “ ‘Black Coffee in Bed,’ ‘Goodbye Girl,’ ‘Pulling Mussels (From the Shell),’ and the soulfully self-flagellating ‘Tempted,’ not one of which cracked the Top 40.” If you can’t catch them Sunday in Cohasset, catch them at Cape Cod Melody Tent on Aug. 27, or at Tanglewood’s Koussevitzky Music Shed on Aug. 29. More info and tickets here.
PAST IS PROLOGUE: The idea behind “Tempest Reconfigured” is something of a tempest itself, so I’ll let Globe theater contributor Terry Byrne explain: “A collection of six short scenes inspired by Shakespeare’s play, created by performing partners from across the city, including Artists’ Theatre of Boston, House of Escada (a ballroom house of LGBTQIA people), Luminarium Dance Company, OrigiNation Cultural Arts Center (which offers dance, theater arts, and African history education), Petrichor Performance Collective (a group of singers who focus on R&B/soul stylings with heavy gospel and jazz influences), and The Loop Lab, which will document the performances.” We’re especially looking forward to poet Letta Neely’s scene centered on Caliban on Sunday at 6 p.m. — a preview of the full realization of the project later this fall. Find more information here.
ÉIRE SUPPLY: If you simply cannot wait for the summer weather to chill out before wearing that giant wool sweater you bought on vacation at the Cliffs of Moher, I’ve got some great news. It’ll be perfectly appropriate at the very first iteration of the Rockport Celtic Festival, a three-day, seven-concert session of top-notch Irish music curated by co-artistic directors Brian O’Donovan (of “A Celtic Sojourn”) and Edinburgh-born harpist-composer Maeve Gilchrist. Settle in for a deep exploration of “Celtic Roots and Branches” complete with workshops and surprising cross-genre collaborations. It rolls on from Friday to Sunday; find a full program schedule and tickets here.
LAST DANCE: This weekend marks your last chances to experience Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival for the year, and Boston Ballet takes the honors of closing the main stage in Becket with a program including excerpts of William Forsythe’s critically acclaimed “Playlist (EP)” (featuring music from Khalid, ABRA, and Lion Babe/Jax Jones), two works by classic Russian choreographer Leonid Yakobson, and resident choreographer Jorma Elo’s “Bach Cello Suites.” Also running through the weekend in the Doris Duke Theatre is the 35-year-strong Urban Bush Women, presenting the evening-long tribute to John Coltrane, “Walking With ’Trane.” Both programs run Friday through Sunday. Find tickets and more information here.
FREE PARKING?: Closer to home (and free!) is another open-air performance in Longfellow Park on Saturday from the nonprofit Dances With Isadora, who “honor the work and aesthetic of modern dance pioneer Isadora Duncan with free outdoor performances.” Globe dance contributor Karen Campbell says this performance will feature “repertoire by Duncan as well as an original piece inspired by sculptor Daniel Chester French’s masterpiece ‘Mourning Victory’ ” followed by “an open audience workshop on Duncan technique.” (So wear something comfy.) Find more details here.
SHOOTS AND SCORES: While you’re out west, swing through Lenox for a Tanglewood tradition: “John Williams Film Night.” The storied composer and conductor laureate hosts Saturday night’s program of classic Hollywood scores, conducted by David Newman. (Prepare to cry if they make their way through “E.T.” — oh God, I’m starting already. . .). Then on Sunday, Giancarlo Guerrero conducts Schoenberg and Beethoven — including the latter’s ninth, natch, and the former’s “Friede auf Erden (Peace on Earth),” which I’m all ears for. Find tickets here and here.
OR STAY IN: I can’t stop watching the trailer for “On Becoming a God in Central Florida” — in part because I’m on a major Kirsten Dunst kick ever since “Drop Dead Gorgeous” started streaming on Hulu this summer, but mostly because it looks really, really good. And, according to Globe TV critic Matthew Gilbert, it is: “If you can’t remember the title, you can call it ‘Kirsten Dunst’s show,’ since it fully belongs to her,” he writes. “Dunst stars as Krystal Stubbs, a wife and mother of a baby named Destiny, who essentially decides to stop being a naïve loser” and takes charge of her life through a multi-level marketing scheme — which sounds very promising! The show, not the scheme. That’s on Sunday at 9 p.m. on Showtime.
And if you’d rather rock out than clock out while you’re occupying the couch, there’s a stunning new limited-edition book of photographs from Holliston-based photographer Barry Schneier, documenting the rise of the only and only Bruce Springsteen (well, at least the most famous of them). “Bruce Springsteen: Rock and Roll Future” is a 150-page documentation of a formative night in the Boss’s career, when “Bruce and the E Street Band [opened] for Bonnie Raitt” at the Harvard Square Theatre on May 9, 1974, “a show previously planned with no opening act.” You can grab a copy here.
And that, summer-savoring Weekenders, is all I’ve got on the calendar this week. Get out and enjoy yourselves, and however you spend your weekend, make it one you’ll miss come Monday. See you next time!