What do Loudmouth and Cinnamon have to do with a Secret Invasion? Why it’s #SetTheVCR of course.
Monday, June 19
Creed III (Anytime / Prime Video-Canada)
Adonis has been thriving in both his career and family life, but when a childhood friend and former boxing prodigy resurfaces, the face-off is more than just a fight.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: LOUDMOUTH (ANYTIME / SHOWTIME ON DEMAND)
Often controversial, occasionally fallible, and always quotable, Reverend Sharpton has spent a lifetime confronting America’s deafening complacency in the fight against racial injustice.
I know Al Sharpton but I don’t know Al Sharpton. I’m not sure how he got his start, how or why he got involved in racial justice. Nor do I grasp his relationship with the media. (Far more than Jesse Jackson, Al is constantly on TV. I can’t tell if that’s a good thing or a cautionary tale.) Speaking of Jackson: the doc features commentary from Barack Obama, Jesse Jackson, James Brown and Senator Chuck Schumer. So Loudmouth is an opportunity to sit at the feet of an elder statesman and to hear from someone who has been on the front lines.
Tuesday, June 20
The Covenant (Anytime / Prime Video-Canada)
Guy Ritchie’s latest: During the war in Afghanistan, a local interpreter risks his own life to carry an injured sergeant across miles of grueling terrain.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: ROB SCHNEIDER: WOKE UP IN AMERICA (ANYTIME / FOX NATION)
He will also tackle the controversy surrounding the word woman and UFOs, plus making a movie with former President Donald Trump and his own vasectomy saga.
In 2019 I had the pleasure of seeing Rob Schneider along with The Sandman live here in Toronto. Going in I knew Adam Sandler’s comedy and he killed. (Check out 100% Fresh on Netflix, it totally lives up to that title.) But Rob Schneider was a surprise. He had some solid bits; I was impressed with his craft and became a fan. So I’m looking forward to this comedy special filmed in front of a live audience at the Tampa Theater in Tampa, Florida. (Second comedy special from Fox Nation this year following Roseanne Barr’s special. Is this streamer becoming a comedy destination?)
Wednesday, June 21
How To Create A Sex Scandal (Anytime / HBO Max)
A shattering story emerges from a swingers club in a small Texan town. But is it…true?
SAMMY SUGGESTION: SECRET INVASION: SEASON 1 (ANYTIME / DISNEY+)
Nick Fury learns of a clandestine invasion of Earth by a faction of shapeshifting Skrulls.
This is a classic Sammy Suggestion…well that is…if this really is Sammy. Ironically the MCU villains are just the worst. If you only know Skrulls etc. from the movies; that sucks. (Captain Marvel remains one of the worst Marvel movies, the Skrulls especially Marvel did em dirty.) Can Secret Invasion repair the Captain Marvel damage? Move the Skrulls away from the corny Mac and Me cute aliens and closer to the international tension of cold war Captain America movies? Like Nick Fury: sleep with one eye open.
Thursday, June 22
The Bear: Season 2 (Anytime / Hulu)
Season two follows Carmen “Carmy” Berzatto, Sydney Adamu and Richard “Richie” Jerimovich as they work to transform their grimy sandwich joint into a next-level spot. Programming Note: This is a binge release: all 10 episodes premiere today. Programming Note: This’ll be on Disney+ Canada on July 19. I dunno why. When it comes to these dumb streaming decisions…I can’t Bear it.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: 2023 NBA DRAFT (8:00 p.m. / ABC)
The Future Starts Here…
Choose Wisely! Once you draft a caliber player: as we’ve seen recently with Luka and Dallas’ struggles… the clock is ticking. You get a limited window of time…of health…of skills to make a special and significant run. You gotta put it together as quickly as possible. The Warriors understood this and have made the most of Curry’s time. And honestly? Picks only matter if a team’s ability to draft and develop players is high. Teams like Utah are under new management so it’s too early to tell if they’ll be good at that as Thunder, Warriors, Raptors etc. are at player development and fit. (Victor Wembanyama hype is utter garbage. Just like when ESPN gets Viagra excited over LeBron’s stupid dumb son.) It’s the same expectations for all draft picks: show up for 82 games and prove yourself: Be Great Or Earn Hate.
Friday, June 23
Evil Dead Rise (Anytime / HBO Max & Crave)
A twisted tale of two estranged sisters whose reunion is cut short by the rise of flesh-possessing demons, thrusting them into a primal battle for survival as they face the most nightmarish version of family imaginable. Originally scheduled for April 2023, but it was delayed until today.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: INFINITY POOL (ANYTIME / HULU)
James and Em Foster are enjoying an all-inclusive beach vacation in the fictional island of La Tolqa, when a fatal accident exposes the resort’s perverse subculture of hedonistic tourism, reckless violence and surreal horrors.
Cronenberg’s latest. Well: Brandon Cronenberg the son of David. How do you find Brandon’s work so far? Infinity Pool is a parable: the way you stay at an all-inclusive resort and think hey: Mexico is great. Yet you haven’t really seen Mexico. Especially when a murder has been committed. How do you get away with murder in foreign country? This is a Cronenberg movie so the answer will surprise. Are you gonna dip your toes into the Infinity Pool? Programming Note: Hulu today, Crave for Canadians on June 30th.
Saturday, June 24
Cocaine Bear (Anytime / Prime Video-Canada)
Inspired by the 1985 true story of a drug runner’s plane crash, missing cocaine, and the black bear that ate it.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: CINNAMON (ANYTIME / TUBI)
Cinnamon is a music-driven thriller, following a young couple who, after falling hopelessly in love and looking for escape, risk it all on one big robbery that goes terribly wrong.
In 2021 Village Roadshow and NBA player Kevin Garnett launch the Black Noir Cinema Franchise on Tubi. Garnett is a Blaxploitation fan so this slate of movies are intended to reinvigorate the Blaxploitation genre. Interesting. How do you make Shaft in 2023? Well pairing Pam Grier with Damon Wayans is a fun way to connect the iconic past to the popping present. Jodi is a frustrated singer with her dreams fading away. Only now a young hustler has become her boyfriend. And it’s True Romance because if they commit this one crime; they can jumpstart her singing career. Fame and fortune await.
Sunday, June 25
Downey’s Dream Cars: Season 1 (Anytime / HBO Max)
Robert Downey Jr. loves restoring classic cars. But he’s also become dedicated to fighting climate change. So he’s bringing his beloved old cars into the future, making them faster, more powerful, and more efficient while keeping their souls intact.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: TITANS SEASON 4 (ANYTIME / NETFLIX-CANADA)
Having saved Gotham, the Titans hit the road to head back to San Francisco. But after a stop in Metropolis, they find themselves in the crosshairs of a supernatural cult with powers unlike anything they’ve faced before.
Chances are if you actively read comic books you can name the Titans. The 4th season of the too cool for school teenage sidekicks unfolds today and what I’ll do is list the villains this season. That’s the better way to show how big this season is: Mayhem Jinx, Lex Luthor, Deathstroke and Brother Blood. Based on that list…that’s a Titans-ic fourth season. The fourth and final season finished on HBO Max on May 11, 2023. It’s here in Canada as of today to conclude the pre-James Gunn era of the DCEU. The DCU on TV starts sometime in 2024 where we can expect an adult animated Creature Commandos and Waller a Peacemaker spin-off series. For now you can enjoy watching the Teen Titans…Go!
Sammy Younan is the affable host of My Summer Lair: think NPR’s Fresh Air meets Kevin Smith: interviews & impressions on Pop Culture.