This is The Captain speaking: We got all kinds of Last Dances for this week’s #SetTheVCR. From The Gray Man, a Last Dance from assassins, to Don McLean, to O.J. Simpson, there’s something for everyone here. Let’s face the music and Last Dance, shall we?
Monday, July 18
Aliens, Abductions, and UFOS: Roswell at 75 (Anytime / Tubi)
Celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Roswell Incident with this eerie new Tubi documentary.
The docuseries provides an extraordinary portrait of Derek Jeter the Yankee captain; his life and career on and off the baseball field.
Following the MLB All Star Home Run Derby behold The Captain: Derek Jeter’s Last Dance. Every Thursday at 9pm from now until August 11 you can enjoy 7 episodes of Jeter’s life and incredible MLB career. Episode 1 description: “Jeter’s upbringing as a bi-racial kid in the Midwest and his journey to the major leagues. This episode features never before seen footage of Jeter getting drafted by the New York Yankees.” The series is executive produced by Spike Lee and all the episodes have been directed by Randy Wilkins. Netflix announced David Beckham is getting a Last Dance, who else is left? Gretzky!!
Tuesday, July 19
American Pie (Anytime / Prime Video Canada)
Four teenage boys enter a pact to lose their virginity by prom night.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE DAY THE MUSIC DIED: THE STORY OF DON MCLEAN’S AMERICAN PIE (ANYTIME / PARAMOUNT+)
Revealing secrets behind McLean’s iconic song: “This documentary is something that will make people think, especially since so many throughout the years have asked me what certain lyrics meant or whom I was referring to, but now I finally can solve many of those mysteries,” says Don McLean.
American Pie is one of those wildly popular songs that everybody knows but I actually don’t know what it means. Yes this is a documentary on Don McLean’s song not the 1999 movie with Jason Biggs and Eugene Levy. So this documentary will be a DVD commentary for the popular song unpacking the song’s construction and providing historical context. Basically Don McLean’s American Pie song is getting the Last Dance treatment.
Wednesday, July 20
David A. Arnold: It Ain’t for the Weak (Anytime / Netflix)
Performing in his Cleveland hometown, David A. Arnold jokes about marital spats and entitled kids as he shares a behind-the-scenes look at his family.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: DICKIE V (ANYTIME / ESPN+)
Dickie V is a fun, unforgettable, moving, inspirational ride through an incredible life still being lived, and a poignant tribute to a man still spreading love and joy wherever he goes.
Ready for this? Dickie Vitale got a Last Dance! The documentary features more than 40 original interviews Magic Johnson, Mike Krzyzewski, Charles Barkley, John Calipari, Robin Roberts, Chris Berman, Mike Tirico, among other leading voices from college basketball, sports broadcasting, and beyond. ESPN’s voice of college basketball for more than four decades has been dealing with cancer so this is a celebration as much as it’s a “living wake.” Programming Note: Dickie V will have its linear debut Saturday, July 23 at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Thursday, July 21
Comic Con Coverage (Anytime / YouTube)
From FX to Star Trek to the MCU in Hall H there will be casting news, trailers and more news from the San Diego Comic-Con. The Con runs from July 21-24 so keep on eye on socials and especially YouTube.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: DAVE CHAPPELLE: WHAT’S IN A NAME?
(ANYTIME / NETFLIX)
Dave Chappelle delivers a speech at his prestigious alma mater that reflects on his comedy roots, his rise to fame and why artists “should never behave.”
This isn’t a Dave Chappelle comedy special. Rather it’s a speech more aligned with his comments he presented during the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor in 2019. Just like those comments this is a stirring reflection on the power of making good art. Think of it as one of those celebrity graduation speeches. The Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington DC, decided to rename its theatre after him. So Chappelle shared his happy history with the school, what it means to him (present tense) and so much more. This is a call to arms. It’s a beautiful message and anyone who creates anything for a living from films to a podcast would be wise to watch this.
Friday, July 22
Last Night in Soho (Anytime / Crave)
An aspiring fashion designer is mysteriously able to enter the 1960s where she encounters a dazzling wannabe singer. (Also on HBO Max for Americans)
SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE GRAY MAN (ANYTIME / NETFLIX)
When the CIA’s most skilled operative-whose true identity is known to none-accidentally uncovers dark agency secrets, a psychopathic former colleague puts a bounty on his head, setting off a global manhunt by international assassins.
We got the Russo Brothers, that mustache, Ana de Armas, a global manhunt for and with assassins. In the Netflix tradition of 6 Underground, Old Guard, and Red Notice here is their latest blockbuster.
Saturday, July 23
The Rental (Anytime / Netflix Canada)
Dave Franco’s 2021 terror tale The Rental is about two couples whose weekend getaway takes a twisted turn.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: APACHE JUNCTION (ANYTIME / ROKU)
Apache Junction is an Old West outpost of lawlessness, a haven for thieves and cold-blooded killers. When big-city reporter Annabelle Angel arrives in town and becomes a target, notorious gunslinger Jericho Ford comes to her aid.
Hopefully I can be Unforgiven for having not watched a Western in a long time. They hardly make em anymore you’d think the genre was Outlawed. Well it’s High Noon and I’m in the mood for some Blazing Saddles. Welcome back to the Wild Wild West. It’s free on Roku so this’ll be a quick draw with my TV remote.
Sunday, July 24
The Cursed (Anytime / Prime Video Canada)
In 19th-century France, a man arrives in a remote country village to investigate an attack by a wild animal. However, he soon discovers a much deeper and sinister force that has the manor and the townspeople in its grip.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: O.J.: MADE IN AMERICA (ANYTIME / DISNEY+)
A chronicle of the rise and fall of O.J. Simpson, whose high-profile murder trial exposed the extent of American racial tensions, revealing a fractured and divided nation.
This Summer Disney+ has (finally) begun adding 30 for 30s and ESPN Films documentaries. While there are a number of 30 for 30s I could highly recommended; one that is Must See TV is O.J.: Made in America. This 30 for 30 is a 7 hour documentary that covers race, sports, media, fame, violence…what we call The America Saga all through the lens of O.J. Right up to the whole “trail of the century” and the witty fool in the Naked Gun movies: it’s all happening. Go through this one slowly. O.J. Simpson got a Last Dance but it’s not what any of us expected.
Sammy Younan is the affable host of My Summer Lair: think NPR’s Fresh Air meets Kevin Smith: interviews & impressions on Pop Culture.