The Latest In Television, Movies and Documentaries
Whenever I stumble onto a great television show, movie or doc, I will post it to this page. When possible, I will provide links to the best add-ons for streaming the available content. Otherwise, I will suggest you add this to your trakt.tv account for future consideration. If you don’t already have a trakt.tv account, I highly recommend you get one. It’s the best way to save a suggestion from friends, family, co-workers or social media post. With one click you can add the television show, movie or doc to your collection and it will be there waiting for you to watch when you get home. If you find something you think I should check out or if you have any questions, please drop me a line via my fb page. You don’t have to like my page or follow me on Twitter, however, if you do like what you find on my site, please do me a favor and tell your friends. Last but not least, I would appreciate it if you would click on one of the banner ads to the right once in a while. You don’t have to buy or subscribe to anything. I make a few pennies from every click and it goes a long way to paying my hosting fees for this site. All the best!
If you feel like this winter/spring 2018 has produced a lackluster list of tv shows, think again. Coming to you from Starz is the series Counterpart starring J.K. Simmons, in which he plays two roles, or should I say, two versions of himself; Howard Silk. On the one hand, there’s Howard Silk, 30-year veteran desk jockey at the UN. He’s a grey strip of wallpaper in a grey building if you will. He’s done very little with his life and with time ebbing on, we clearly get the sense he wished he had done more with his life. It’s at this point we learn the UN has been guarding a top-secret portal to a parallel dimension. Howard is introduced to his parallel self, Howard Silk special agent/assassin. Don’t be fooled into thinking this is just another sci-fi action show, there’s a much deeper element to this story, as plain Howard Silk tries to discover what events were the catalyst for change and where his path diverged, separating him from the parallel universe version of him. J.K always puts in a good performance and if the trailer and reviews are any indications, this is the next big show talked about around the water cooler at work!
Most definitely not for the kids but, if you’re a fan of comic book style programming that seems to dominate mainstream television these days, you will likely enjoy Happy!. Most of you will recognize Christopher Meloni from Law & Order: SVU, who plays Nick Sax, a burned-out cop turned hitman, with a price on his head. His mistakes seem to follow him. He’s so down on his luck, Sax would love to end his life. The irony being, his luck will not let him die. As flawed as Sax is, we know deep down he’s a good guy. Enter Happy! (played by Patton Oswald), a floating blue horse that is the imaginary friend of the daughter Sax’s doesn’t know he has. She’s been captured by a meth smoking Santa with a penchant for little boys and girls. Happy has been sent to find Sax and rescue his daughter before it’s too late. What ensues is a very dark comedy/action/crime thriller. I really like this show. The action is great and rather graphic so, as noted at the beginning here, this is not for the kids. The comedy is dark and the characters are appealing. The bad guys are very bad and the good guys, are very flawed. Happy! comes to us from SyFy. Check it out, you will not be disappointed.
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
I just finished this series and I have to say, it was quite good! Set in the 1950’s, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is about a Jewish Housewife from New York who stumbles into stand up comedy after her husband leaves her for his secretary Penny Pan. Miriam, whom everyone calls Midge, had been supporting her husbands fledgling ambition for comedy, following him to a speakeasy on the West Side where, unbeknownst to Midge, he had been stealing Bob Newhearts comedy and passing it off as his own. After bombing one evening, he reveals to Midge he’s not happy with their marriage of 4 yrs and leaves. Midge, in a drunken stupor, heads out to the Gaslight where she proceeds to get on stage and kill with a 10 min stream of consciousness set, then promptly gets arrested for using profanity and flashing her chest. Upon her arrest, Midge shares a ride downtown with the one and only Lenny Bruce. I’m not sure if this is loosely based on one person’s life (Joan Rivers), or perhaps a group of women. Miriam ‘Midge’ Maisel is a fictional character, however, with the introduction to Lenny Bruce (played by Luke Kirby), it would suggest some of the events may very well be loosely based on the life or lives of women comics during that time period. And, let me say, It’s the time period of the late 50’s that originally drew me to this series. I love period pieces of this era; the innocence, the discovery of Rock n Roll, stand up comedy, speakeasies and a New York that has yet to lose itself in the reputation of decadence and squalor that would come to define it in the 70’s to early 80’s. You will recognize most of the actors in this series; Tony Shalhoub plays Midge’s dad, Marin Hinkle plays the mom, Michael Zegen plays Midge’s husband, Alex Borstein plays Susie, Midge’s manager, along with guest appearances from Gilbert Gottfried as a strip club MC and Jane Lynch as a successful comic known as Sophie Lennon. Last but not least, Rachel Brosnahan plays Midge Maisel. Where do you know her from?? Seasons 1- 3 of House of Cards. Remeber??!! Rachel!! The call girl that Doug Stamper falls for?? Bingo!. If you watched the last season of The Duce, you will recognize this set, in particular, the Gaslight is the same bar James Franco runs in that series. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is well worth your time. Brought to you by Amazon Prime
I’m loving this western from Netflix right now!! It’s dark, funny with a great cast of characters and a great premise. Jeff Daniels plays the villain, whose reputation for savagery precedes him from town to town. I have to say, he plays it so well. Every character in this series has some form of a traumatic backstory, contributing to the dark underlying current in the storyline. And, I don’t find it overbearing either. In fact, just when I think the series might be going in a direction that’s a little predictable, maybe a little too daytime soap opera, they slap you in the face with a little darkness. I love it! Who else is in this you ask? Michelle Dockery from Downton Abby, Tantoo Cardinal star of just about every film you’ve ever seen involving indigenous culture (and she is AWESOME here!), Merritt Wever from Nurse Jackie, Kim Coates from Sons of Anarchy, and a host of other actors you’ll barely remember from films you can’t remember the names of. Godless is well worth binge-watching!!
The Grand Tour: Season 2
Brought to you by Amazon Prime, Richard Hammond, James May and Jeremy Clarkson are back and judging by episode 1, the best chemistry in automotive programming is better than ever! 5 episodes in and it’s proving to be heads and shoulders above season 1. The current Top Gear is not even close. In fact, there are no automotive shows currently that hold a candle to this program. Where else would you find a show that drives a fully customized tank through a mall in Dubi? Or pits a Ford GT against a plane on a race from New York to Niagra Falls? The camera work and cinematography is outstanding! The cars are outstanding! And, as mentioned, the chemistry between these three gents is unmatched. The Grand Tour is THE show for automotive enthusiasts bar none!
The crime and horror genre within movie and television habits is often identified by a moderate bias toward economic pessimism. Take note, these are all the rage, not just within television habits, but is the number one genre in podcasts. Netflix is well onboard with this producing a tonne of material to satiate viewer consumption. Their latest offering, Killer Legends, is all about urban legends and the real people/events that inspired them.
If you like sci-fi and time travel, you’re going to like this new series from German Netflix. Available in English subtitles or overdub, check it out!
Muhammad Ali is arguably, the greatest boxer to ever live. Nex, to him, Mike Tyson is one of the most exciting fighters I’ve ever seen. His life in and out of the ring was a train wreck. The doc is told by Mike himself. It’s deeply disturbing. You will either grow to have an appreciation for the man, or it will deepen your dislike for the guy. Either way, this doc is so good! Check it out!
Voyeur, coming to you from Netflix is about a guy who bought a hotel for the expressed purposes of watching people behind closed doors and the journalist from the New Yorker who told his story. This is no fictional drama. This is a documentary of real events.
Here’s one I’ve been looking forward to. Wormwood is a docudrama if you will, about the CIA’s involvement using LSD on subjects during the 70’s. What makes this special, this documentary comes from Errol Morris, a man with a gift for documentaries and story telling. Also stars Peter Sarsgaard, a great actor with a great hair line. Watch it on Netflix.
What if magic was real? What if Orcs and elves walked among us? What if it starred Will Smith, Joel Edgerton and Edgar Ramirez and was brought to you by Netflix? It would be called Bright.
UPDATE: Word on the street is, this movie is the worst movie of 2017. I mean, that dubious distinction alone. You just have to watch it now!
UPDATE: UPDATE: This is the worst movie of 2017! It’s so bad, I had 10 mins left in the film and I couldn’t take it any longer. It’s not The Room bad, but it is quite terrible. I hesitate to use an expletive here as I don’t wish to insult the expletive. It’s been greenlit for a squeal. I’m guessing Bright II: Electric Boogaloo?