(Written for Funkhouser by Brad Morris)
Welcome back to another Media Weekend Forecast! I have a feeling everyone is getting excited for summertime. The kiddos only have a month before summer break, and family vacations to the beach are coming up fast. I can already taste the margaritas and watching the tide roll in. So lets get through this weekend together. No theme for this week, just great movies and tv to watch. Also, we’re not doing the why not to watch this week, because all of these choices are too good to pass over.
Netflix: The Prestige
Why To Watch: This movie is done by Christopher Nolan of Christian Bale Batman fame. During his run through the Dark Knight trilogy, Nolan took a break to bring us this movie of competing magicians, starring Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman. The theme of the movie is underneath the surface the entire two hours, and it is a study in how much a person is willing to sacrifice behind the scenes to get what your heart desires and how far you’re willing to go. A great cast goes with the story, including a masterful performance by David Bowie as Nikola Tesla. And if you have a keen eye, you’ll also see Smeagol/Gollum from Lord of the Rings. If you do, then bravo.
Hulu: The Handmaid’s Tale
Why To Watch: I’ve been putting off this Hulu original series for just the right weekend, and I feel I can’t hold off any longer. If you want to dive into a post-USA government series, there are several out there. This series takes a unique look at the return of a caste system, ala the dark ages. Throw in a huge amount of religious themes and fantasy, and you have a successful series. The episodes come out 2 or 3 at a time, so this weekend you can catch up very quickly. The face of the series should make Mad Men fans happy, as Elisabeth Moss stars as Offred. I won’t spoil why that is her character’s name, tune in and find out why for yourself.
TV: The Son
Why To Watch: The Son is the latest series from our friends at AMC, home of Breaking Bad, Mad Men, and The Walking Dead. Starring Pierce Brosnan as an older Eli McCullough, the series takes place in 1915 in southern Texas. The story feels like an old western, as two competing families argue and fight over oil as it becomes a cash cow in a time in Texas history that was still bloody. The master stroke of the series is several flashbacks to 17 year old Eli after he is captured by a group of Comanche Indians. It shows what his motivations are as an older man, and why he does what he does. It also shows how his family is an extension of his upbringing and how each person must choose their own path. Tune in for the conflict, stay for the family struggle.
Movies: The Circle
Why To Watch: The best seller by David Eggers is brought to the big screen. And there are some serious actors brought in to tell the story of a possible future in our world. Tom Hanks, Emma Watson, John Boyega, and Patton Oswald lead us into the world of social media and the question of how much privacy can change. This is also, sadly and with a heavy heart, the last performance of Bill Paxton, playing Emma Watson’s father. I will be carving out the two hours this weekend to ask if seeing is believing.
Why To Watch: There is a historic match-up this weekend, as the Cubs visit Boston. The two fan bases suffered for so long, this will be a chance for fans to bask in the glow of being champions instead of lovable losers. Instead of arguments over which fan base suffered more over the last century, I have feeling many beers will be shared in the stands with fans saying “You’re great!”, “No, you’re great!”. The only thing missing for this series is Big Papi. So take yourself out to the ballgame, or at least on tv.
This weekend also marks one week until the Kentucky Derby, so in between mowing the grass and cleaning the house, get your nose into which horse is going to be yours. And don’t listen to that shady stable hand who thinks he knows everything.
Stay safe this weekend and enjoy your viewing pleasures.