Here are the highlights (and lowlights) from movies, television and gaming over the past week.
The trailer for Kingsman: The Golden Circle is released, and it every bit as awesome as I had hoped. The first Kingsman is probably my favorite movie of the last few years, and the sequel is honestly my most anticipated movie of 2017 (yes, more than Star Wars, Guardians and Justice League.) Upping the cool factor is the addition of Jeff Bridges, Julianne Moore & Channing Tatum.
Jurassic Park fans have something to celebrate – the upcoming fifth movie will now have 100% more Goldblum. After sitting out the last two movies, Jeff Goldblum returns to the series as Dr. Ian Malcolm. It is not known in which capacity he will appear (if it’s a starring role or just a cameo), but as his character has easily been the most fun part of the series to date, I’ll take anything. Now if they can get Sam Neill back as well…
Director Jonathan Demme, who was responsible for bringing us The Silence of the Lambs and Philadelphia (two of the biggest awards winners of the 90’s), passed away at the age of 73. His last major film was The Manchurian Candidate back in 2004, but he had been working consistently since the turn of the century on smaller films, documentaries and television programs.
With his career back on track, director M. Night Shyamalan has officially announced a sequel to his best film Unbreakable. Titled Glass, the sequel will reunite Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson after 17 years!! Plot details are obviously scarce at this time, but expect lots of twists when it is released in early 2019. Spoilers ***His last movie, Split, was shown to be tied into Unbreakable. Split star James McAvoy will also return*** end spoilers.
After 5 seasons, Bates Motel (the re-imagining of the classic film Psycho) aired its series finale. While never a ratings powerhouse, it was consistently one of the best reviewed shows on television. Both the show and star Vera Farmiga have received multiple nominations at the various awards ceremonies, including The Emmys and Critics Choice.
What should have been a home run wound up being more of a whiff as Powerless has been prematurely yanked from NBC’s schedule, meaning the series has been effectively cancelled. The workplace comedy set in the DC superhero universe had months of build up, but the results never matched the hype. The show started getting (slightly) better as it went on, but the entire cast could all do better. It won’t be missed.
The Writer’s Guild of America may wind up striking as of May 2. If you think that doesn’t mean anything, you’d be very, very wrong. It will mean that most scripted shows, late night talk shows and variety shows will likely be over until the strike can be resolved. When writers last went on strike in 2007, almost every scripted show on the air had their season cut short and many shows never recovered. If this strike does goes through, I hope you like reality shows because you’ll probably be seeing a lot of them.
The latest show to jump on the revival bandwagon is Roseanne. Only half the original cast is apparently returning, so I’m not sure how well this could work. Also, since John Goodman is supposedly one of the returnees, should we assume that the last 2 years of the sitcom technically never existed?
The most high profile game release of the week is most likely Outlast 2. While the first game wasn’t without its problems, there is no question that it is one of the most terrifying video games ever released. If Part 2 is even half as creepy as the demo, I recommend turning out the lights, cranking up the volume and preparing for some sleepless nights.
The worst kept secret in gaming gets confirmed as Call of Duty: WWII is announced. After spending the last few years in a futuristic setting, CoD is returning to its roots and going back in time. Gone are the crazy guns, hover packs and bionic body parts that have been prominent since Ghosts in 2013. I’ve always played Call of Duty games for the campaign over the multiplayer, and the novelty has worn off. With a WWII setting, I’m definitely back in.