Cocktail chatter: The video of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and others appearing to mock U.S. President Donald Trump was notable not so much for what was said but for who was saying it. “It’s rare for us to hear what leaders of U.S. allies honestly think about Trump,” Josh Keating writes; few countries can afford to get on his bad side.
Messaging: In London last week, two attendees of a prison rehabilitation conference were stabbed to death—by a rehabilitated former prisoner who had benefited from their work. British conservatives including Prime Minister Boris Johnson have since seized upon this to argue against decarceration methods and for more punitive criminal justice. But Josh Feinzig, a law student who worked with a victim of the attack, explains why this tragedy should not be used to belittle the importance of prison reform, something that’s still urgently needed.
Women’s work: Little Women is coming to the big screen for the eighth(!) time, and Dana Stevens says this version is the best yet. The film establishes director Greta Gerwig as a “major new filmmaking talent” and Timothée Chalamet as the “most perfect Laurie who ever Lauried”—but really, every single role is perfectly cast. Read Stevens’ review.
Post pop: Singer Post Malone has scored his fourth No. 1 hit with the soaring, melodic “Circles.” What’s unique about this chart topper? Chris Molanphy explains how Post has finally shed his rap reputation—and become our era’s defining star. In other music news, check out Fred Kaplan’s roundup of the best jazz of 2019, including one tangentially festive* surprise.
For fun: Starbucks math.
*Think Home Alone,