What I Watched, What You Watched #150

I hope you’ve all had a pleasant first week of August, and I hope you all enjoyed the influx of Sacred Wall content I’ve prepared for you all. Incidentally, I only saw one new movie this week, as I’m still binge watching all sorts of quality television. Unfortunately for me, that film was Impractical Jokers: The Movie, a film I hated so much I openly wish for the four cast members to earn a one-way ticket to Guantanamo Bay. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t take in a few other quality movies to make up for the transgression!

I started my week with a horror classic: the 1992 film Candyman. I’ll admit that the film isn’t exactly my type of horror film, but my God is it impressive, at least in terms of scares, score, and performance. If anything, it has me excited for what Nia DaCosta and Jordan Peele cook up for the sequel. I also had a chance to go to a drive-in for the first time ever, for a chance to see Superman: The Movie on the big screen. Superman is one of my favorite superhero films, thanks to its still-groundbreaking effects, impressive vision, and sense of true heroism, selflessness, and joy in its material (as opposed to the current depression of the DC Universe). My family also had a quiet movie night with one of my most underrated films of last year, The Peanut Butter Falcon, which is now on Hulu and is really an enjoyable, fulfilling comedy-drama. If you get the chance, don’t sleep on it. Oh, and while I’ve still got a ways to go, I’ve started the 1972 classic The Emigrants, a three hour epic about a Swedish family that immigrates to the United Sates in the early 1800s. It’s a bit slower than I was expecting, and unlike most epics, with a large cast of discernible characters, it’s often hard to keep track of the cast and their motivations. That said, it’s still an honorable epic, comprised of great performances by Max von Sydow and Liv Ullmann.

I’ve continued my massive television binge with a variety of shows, both comedic and dramatic. I’ve completed Joe Pera Talk With You, which is far deeper and inspiring in its second season. Incidentally, it marked a new trend for me in terms of my television watching, a trend I didn’t anticipate: shows about good people living their best lives. It’s why I’m loving Ramy, which is a warm, sharp, lived-in show that grows funnier each episode. And it’s why I’m loving Schitt’s Creek, which has become my new binge-watching easy-living comedy, like Modern Family, Everybody Loves Raymond, and The Good Place (the last of which I’ll be returning to when the final season returns to Netflix). The Great continues to be one of my favorite shows of the year, thanks to Fanning and Hoult’s performances and Tony McNamara’s writing. I’m also digging Perry Mason, which is the type of film noir throwback I desperately crave at all times in life. I’ve started getting back into Curb Your Enthusiasm, which I’d fallen behind on, and it’s still as brilliant as the season’s start. Oh, and I watched the 2017 production of Present Laughter, one of my favorite Noel Coward comedies, starring Kevin Kline. It’s a breezy, smart, fun play that easily helps pass the time. In fact, the only show I watched last week that I didn’t enjoy was Modern Love, which was suggested to me by my friend/archrival Lena Smith. While I enjoyed the sweet bite of the John Gallagher Jr./Sofia Boutella episode, the series is mostly eight variations of the exact same saccharine story – two great actors reading terrible lines that essentially elaborate the moral that “love is wacky and sweet.” In fact, there are two episodes I overwhelmingly hated, despite a handful of great performers – the one with Julia Garner about wanting to hook up with her father figure and the one where Anne Hathaway gives a ham-fisted exaggeration of what bipolar disorder looks like. I appreciated the attempted portrayal, but man did it rub me the wrong way.

That wraps up this week’s What I Watched, What You Watched. I’ll be back later this week with a few reviews and the continuation of my Best of 2019 lists. In the meantime, feel free to comment below with your thoughts on what I’ve been watching, as well as the shows and films you’ve been watching. See you all soon!

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