Here’s a collection curated by the entertainment journalists at The Associated Press, covering what’s hitting TV, streaming services, and music and video game platforms this week.
— With “Nope”, Jordan Peele created yet another rarity in Hollywood: a completely original film that was also a box office hit. In his third film as writer-director, following Get Out and Us, Peele expands his darkly unsettling oeuvre into science fiction. The film, which hits theaters Friday on Peacock after a theatrical release this summer, is about a mysterious alien force floating in the clouds over a California ranch. The film reunites Peele with Get Out star Daniel Kaluuya, whose character runs a family horse business with his sister (Keke Palmer). is more than most big summer extravaganzas can promise.”
— Family films have been rare in theaters lately, but they are proliferating on streaming services. One of Netflix’s biggest forays into this space yet is Slumberland, a $90 million fantasy adventure from Hunger Games director Francis Lawrence. The film, which debuts on Netflix on Friday, November 18, is about a young girl (Marlow Barkley) who enters the dream world of Slumberland, where a villain named Flip (Jason Momoa) helps her find her late father. It is loosely based on Winsor McCay’s early 20th century comic stream Little Nemo in Slumberland.
— The holiday films are already happily making their way onto home screens. “Spirited,” a riff on “A Christmas Carol” starring Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds, debuts Friday, November 18 on Apple TV+. A lavish song-and-dance musical that modernizes the classic by Charles Dickens and reinterprets it from the ghosts’ perspective. (Ferrell plays “Present.”) In her measured rather than humbug review, Bahr said “Spirited” “falls short as a musical,” but “is still quite a lot of fun.”
— Neil Young & Crazy Horse have a new 11-track studio album, World Record, produced by Rick Rubin and Young. The first track, “Love Earth”, is a chilled out love ballad for the planet, with the lyrics “Love Earth, such an easy thing to do/Love Earth, ’til the water and the air is pure” and a video of a barefoot Young walking in the wilderness. The new album explores the state of the earth, its uncertain future and even Young’s relationship with cars (on “Chevrolet”). Neil Young & Crazy Horse have had a successful couple of years, releasing Colorado in 2019, followed by Barn in 2021.
– Scotty McCreery fans have reason to smile: A truckload of new songs from the recording sessions for his 2021 album Same Truck. Same Truck: The Deluxe Album is out Friday, November 18th. “Nothin’ Right” is one of six new tracks on the deluxe album. “We had more songs I loved ready for the original release of ‘Same Truck’ than we could put on this album, so I’m thrilled that Triple Tigers asked me to do a deluxe edition where I could add six more songs,” McCreery said. On It reunites McCreery, Jessi Alexander, Jonathan Singleton and Frank Rogers – the writing team responsible for his #1 2020 hit “In Between.”
– Broadway stars and husband and wife Colin Donnell and Patti Murin will release their first album together, ‘Something Stupid’, on Friday, November 18th. The pair tackles 12 tracks from Bruce Springsteen, Sara Bareilles, Jason Robert Brown, Paul Simon and more. Murin played Princess Anna in Disney’s Frozen on Broadway and was a recurring character on NBC’s Chicago Med, a show Donnell also starred in. His Broadway credits include “Violet”, “Anything Goes” and “Jersey Boys”.
— Chris Hemsworth, aka “Thor”, challenges himself on National Geographic’s “Limitless,” as part of an effort to discover the resilience of the human body and how best to confront aging. Accompanied by friends and presumably nervous family members, Hemsworth takes on challenges including swimming through a near-freezing arctic fjord, climbing a 100-foot rope that hangs over a canyon, and living with a simulation of what his body would be like in the Age of almost 90 years could look like . Created by filmmaker Darren Aronofsky, the six-part series debuts Wednesday on Disney+.
— He was born Steamboat Willie in a 1928 animated short, but like many older stars, he was renamed to a more catchy name. He finally gets the documentary treatment with Mickey: The Story of a Mouse, which debuts Friday, November 18 on, natch, Disney+. The product of Walt Disney’s fertile imagination, Mickey was loved by children and adults alike and a money mouse for Disney’s burgeoning entertainment empire. The Chipper Mickey also proved to be an adaptable icon, as detailed in the film by director Jeff Malmberg and producer Morgan Neville (both working on the Fred Rogers documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor?).
– Fox Nation’s four-part series chronicling the 150-year history of the magnificent Yellowstone National Park has a fitting host in Kevin Costner, star of Paramount+ drama Yellowstone. In Yellowstone: One-Fifty, which debuts Sunday, November 20, Costner follows the path of an 1870s geological expedition in the western region that later became the first US national park; visit Yellowstone during a harsh winter with temperatures dropping to minus 40 degrees and explore the park’s thousand-year history.
— AP TV writer Lynn Elber
— “Pentiment” is one of the most fascinating experiments of autumn. It’s a thriller set in 16th-century Bavaria. His art is inspired by the illuminated manuscripts and woodcut prints of the time. And there’s no voice acting – instead, dialogue is rendered in medieval fonts, with fonts and colors changing based on the speaker’s status. It’s a concentrated labor of love from Obsidian Entertainment director Josh Sawyer, best known for sprawling role-playing epics like Fallout: New Vegas and Pillars of Eternity. This journey through time starts on Tuesday for Xbox X/S, Xbox One and PC.
— Long-time Pokémon players know they can count on Nintendo to regularly introduce new batches of the combative creatures. Meet Sprigatito, an intriguing grass cat; Fuecoco, an excitable fire crocodile; and Quaxly, a duck with a mean kick. They are the starting characters in “Pokémon Scarlet” and “Pokémon Violet”. According to Nintendo, trainers will be able to freely explore a broader open world, a departure from the linear storylines of previous games. Fans can continue the never-ending quest to catch them all on the Nintendo Switch on Friday, November 18th.
Catch up on AP’s entertainment coverage here: https://apnews.com/apf-entertainment.