Welcome to the Weekend Watch. Where we try to point you towards the best ways to spend your viewing time (or, at least, steer you clear of the garbage).
Loren: An interesting look at the way people can be railroaded into confessions by law enforcement, but there’s just something so… Eastwood about this that’s turning me off from it.
Rick: This movie has been getting heaped with both praise and ire since it started screening. Most of the ire is coming from what is essentially a near-complete character assassination of Kathy Scruggs, the Atlanta journalist who broke the story about the FBI’s investigation. So, I’m torn. I’d like to watch it for Paul Walter Hauser’s performance as Jewell, but I don’t want to have to sit through the unnecessary knee-capping of Scruggs (who isn’t even alive to defend herself). Ugh. I should probably just read the book instead.
AJ: This movie demonstrates the very worst of what our media is capable of. A lot of us are now acutely aware of that problem, as it trickles down from The White House. I want to see this story on screen but I am not sure I want to see Eastwood’s version of it. It would probably be a really badass documentary for HBO, just sayin’.
Jumanji: The Next Level
Loren: While I thought the last one was fine and understand why it warranted a sequel, I feel nothing for this.
Rick: I have hope for this, but it’s going to be tough to recapture what made the last one work so well. *fingers crossed*
AJ: I was so pleasantly surprised by the first one — it was so clever and I was completely obsessed with Jack Black as a teenaged girl as an aging dude with a pot belly. Can’t wait to see what they’ve done with the sequel. I think it looks promising.
Loren: When Sandler goes for it he’s pretty great. I don’t see myself rushing out to see this one but I’ll give it a go once it’s streaming.
Rick: Definitely in for this. Also, I wish Sandler would just go for it and, maybe not give up comedy, but step away from it a bit. I’d be up for watching him a lot more.
AJ: Maybe this is why I find Sandler’s phoned-in Netflix comedies so offensive. He is clearly capable of making better movies. I am intrigued by this and would like to see it.
Loren: I really enjoy the cast and hate Fox News so that’s a win win. I will say it will be hard to see Megyn Kelly as a hero. I’m certainly not saying she should have had any of that happen to her, as no person should, but as a human it’s hard to feel bad for people you find contemptible.
Rick: This story makes my skin crawl, but I’m totally down to watch it.
AJ: This looks pretty similar to the Showtime limited series, “The Loudest Voice.” I can literally identify scenes in the trailer that, down to the set pieces, look identical. But that aired over weeks and this is obviously a theatrical feature…. Anyway, it was a compelling – if not nauseating – story on Showtime and I suspect the same will be true here. Given the cast, I am totally in to see it. And can I also say the use of Billie Eilish’s “Bad Guy” here is SO GOOD.
The Great War
Loren: Why does that look so cheap? I was just about to say that the location looks nothing like it should and then noticed Rick said the exact same thing. Great minds I guess.
Rick: So, it’s Battlefield 1: The Movie? I wish this didn’t look so cheaply made. Did they shoot on someone’s undeveloped back acre in North Jersey? Also, when are we going to get a proper Harlem Hellfighters movie?
AJ: Wow. That looks…. Well, I know Variety hated it.
Loren: Cults are weird film at eleven.
Rick: I’m curious, but think I’m only ‘read the wiki’ curious.
AJ: Why would you name your distribution apparatus after the strain of weed that sedates people? But for what it’s worth, in that regard, the film seems on brand.
Loren: I won’t lie I was a little sad to hear that they were remaking this Cronenberg classic but Rick talked me out of that feeling below. I will say that as much as I’ve had a crush on Laura Vandervoort (even before Smallville) I think they missed an opportunity to cast an adult film actress in the same way we got Marilyn Chambers in the original.
Rick: Ordinarily I’d be reticent about remaking Cronenberg’s Rabid, but the Soska Sisters are incredibly talented (American Mary is one of the best horror movies of the decade). I have no doubt they’ve made something reverential to the original but added their own demented spin. I’m just bummed that this is getting such a small release (basically the midnight circuit in a handful of cities). Regardless, I’m going to go out of my way to see it in theaters.
AJ: If I were into horror films, I think I’d be into that. It looks great. For a trailer. Sitting through an entire movie would traumatize me delicate nature.
Loren: Dept. Dewey should stick to wrestling.
Rick: The only way that Mob Town could be interesting is if it were somehow an extension of Westworld. Otherwise, this looks like garbage.
AJ: I agree, Rick. And I would totally watch a mafia version of Westworld.
Line of Descent
Rick: I’m fully behind a Brendan Fraser comeback, but I don’t know that I’m in for this movie.
AJ: Interesting choice, Brandan Fraser. Maybe Hollywood needs to start sending you some offers so you don’t have to take roles like this?
Hell on the Border
Loren: I feel like there are only two settings for modern day westerns, either they look great or they look super cheap. Sadly this seems to be the latter. Also, besides that one Purge movie, has Frank Grillo ever played a good guy? Guess he just has that face.
Rick: I was going to do a little history lesson on black-led westerns, but I have to say something about this – I have one note for this trailer: word choice. You could have saved spoiling a huge part of the story by swapping out ‘died’ for ‘became’. I mean, why would you reveal that? It makes no sense and saps all of the tension out of the movie. Go sit in the corner, Lionsgate promo team. And put on this dunce cap. You’ve more than earned it. You certainly haven’t earned my money or any more of my time.
AJ: To Rick’s point, perhaps they are assuming everyone knows the story of Bass Reeves? But I didn’t and feels safe to assume most won’t, so the choice of wording here is definitely a shame. Seems more like a VOD or cable watch to me.
Float Like a Butterfly
Loren: Was… was she… was she married off to her father?
Rick: I enjoy both boxing and striking back at abusive drunks. *hands over monies*
AJ: That looks like a badass little indie. Here for it.
Loren: I’m a big fan of dance but this is just a little too artsy fartsy for my taste.
Rick: I have nothing but admiration for dancers, and it really takes a special kind of mind to put together choreography. This will stay on my radar.
AJ: I can’t say I’d pay up for a ticket to see this in theaters but it definitely has my interest. If it arrives on a streaming service, I’d totally queue it up.
Loren: Yeah that doesn’t feel like it has any teeth. Blumhouse makes some great horror and even some of their PG-13 fare is at least fun (Happy Death Day). Oh well, I guess that’s why we have the original.
Rick: There’s really nowhere to go but up after the last time this movie was remade (Black Xmas! So edgy! *groan*). Still, they give away the entire goddamn movie in the trailer, so I don’t have a lot of faith in it. Also the whole justification about it being PG-13 instead of R had me rolling my eyes. I’ll probably just watch Bob Clark’s original again.
La Belle Epoque
Loren: I like the idea that it’s real people acting out your historical fantasies. No scifi, no magic, no time travel, just a really serious theater company. I hope the movie can live up to its own concept.
Rick: I like this concept. There’s a lot of room to play here. I’ll be sure to watch this before a terrible US remake featuring virtual or augmented reality gets greenlit.
AJ: That’s a pretty original premise – I’m surprised we’ve not seen it before. And to what Rick said, no doubt we will see it again….
A Hidden Life
Loren: Ah, back when the Nazi’s were still the bad guys.
Rick: Like most of Terrence Malick’s recent movies, this is getting mixed reviews. I’ll probably wind up catching this in theaters just for the experience. If nothing else it’ll be gorgeous to look at.
AJ: I can usually skip Malick films but this subject matter compels me. The story of Franz Jägerstätter is so sad and so moving. I am quite the Holocaust-era history student and would like to see this.
Michelle Wolf: Joke Show
Loren: If I can get past her voice, which is a big ‘if’, I could be in to this. I do like her humor.
Rick: Man, that voice. I barely held strong for that minute and change. I couldn’t do a whole special.
AJ: I’m just gonna be blunt about this. Nails on a chalkboard. Can’t stand her.
Loren: This looks more like one of Bay’s old movies that were still a ton of fun. Hopefully this is more Face/Off or Bad Boys and less Transformers.
Rick: I think I’ve seen all of Michael Bay’s movies. Why stop now? I am a little bummed this isn’t hitting theaters. It’s always more fun to watch him blow up all the things on the biggest screen possible.
AJ: Sure. I like Ryan Reynolds enough to watch this on Netflix.
Marvel’s Runaways Season 3
Loren: I’ve enjoyed this show and was pretty sad to see that it’s ending, but with the closure of Marvel Television (get fucked Ike Perlmutter) it was all but an inevitability.
Rick: I had superhero TV show burn out when this series started. I’m still burned out, and knowing that this has been cancelled isn’t lighting a fire under me to start watching now.
AJ: Did anyone see that they are officially shuttering Marvel’s TV company and just folding everything into one house? Anyway, I fatigued on Marvel streaming shows long before this came out, sadly.
Belichick & Saban: The Art of Coaching
Loren: I’m a pretty big Patriots fan (I know it’s harder than ever this year) and I think Bill Belichick is one of the greatest coaches to ever do the job. This should be fascinating. Even more so when you realize he never really talks that much during the season.
Rick: I’ve fallen so far out of football that I can’t bring myself to care about this.
AJ: Every year you’re gonna hear me say something like “maybe this will be the year I get into football” and every year I don’t. But regardless, I often love a sports doc. This could be good Saturday afternoon watching. And as little as I know about football, I actually know who these guys are! I’m so proud.
Mel Brooks: Unwrapped
Loren: For me, Mel Brooks is one of the funniest people at any point in time. It feels so effortless for him. I’m all the way on board for this.
Rick: All of the Mel Brooks, please.
AJ: Hell yes.
The Expanse Season 4
Loren: I really enjoyed the first season of this show but haven’t kept up on it. It’s still on the list just much farther down than it used to be.
Rick: I watched the first three or four episodes of the first season but didn’t really take to it. Good for them that the show has found new life on Amazon, though.
AJ: Well I never got into this one either, so it’s a pass.
So that’s your upcoming weekend in review. Let us know what you saw, liked and/or hated.
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–Loren, Rick, and AJ