Hit Man

In select theaters May 24 

Loosely based on Skip Hollandsworth’s 2001 Texas Monthly story of the same name, this romantic comedy/thriller stars Austin native Glen Powell as an amiable professor who leads a double life working for the police as a pretend murderer for hire. But then he falls in love with one of his prospective clients, played by Adria Arjona, who is desperate to escape her abusive husband. The tangle of deception and romance leads to a comedy of errors and a descent into a violent underworld. Powell cowrote the script with fellow Texan Richard Linklater, who knows a thing or two about making a noir screwball from a Hollandsworth true-crime feature (see 2011’s Bernie, starring Jack Black and Matthew McConaughey). If you can’t catch Hit Man on the big screen, it will stream on Netflix starting June 7. 


They Came for the Schools, by Mike Hixenbaugh

Mariner Books, May 14

The Houston-based national reporter for NBC expands on the podcast Southlake, which he cocreated, and its story about how the affluent Dallas suburb became a battleground in the fight over critical race theory. Hixenbaugh broadens the scope and delineates the right-wing and Christian-nationalist forces behind the assaults on public education—book bans, efforts to privatize schools, attempts to limit protections for minority and LGBTQ students, the campaign to establish Christianity in the classroom—and the coalition of parents, students, and teachers working to stop them. 


“Multiplicity: Blackness in Contemporary American Collage” 

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, on view through May 12

Collage may have been popularized by Georges ​Braque and Pablo Picasso in the early twentieth century, but it has been developed to extraordinary effect by Black American artists, especially in the past few decades and particularly in the Lone Star State. This exhibition of eighty works by 52 artists—including notable Texans such as Tay Butler, Jamal Cyrus, Rick Lowe, Lovie Olivia, and Deborah Roberts—invites viewers to peel back the layers informing Black identity and marvel at innovative methods of telling stories through assembled images. 

This article originally appeared in the May 2024 issue of Texas Monthly. Subscribe today.