Bye, Bye Birdie pushed back a year

Well it turns out that there will not be two musical on NBC this next television season as Jennifer Lopez is doing to many things (Vegas residence,  her tv shows,Shades of Blue and World of Dance) and the schedules do not alloy for any time for really anything else. The one thing that we can hope for is that the added time makes it better somehow, especially with the reworked book. At least Jesus Christ Superstar at Easter is going to happen, this is a relatively low key musical look at what Norman Jewison did in the film version. Hopefully, they get some singer/actors who aren’t huge names for this and there is only one female part in the whole thing.

40 years of Star Wars

It has been officially 40 years since Star War, subsequently named, A New Hope and all the follows. I’ve been a fan of this film series for as long as I have been alive it seems. I don’t remember when I first watched it but me and my sisters would routinely watch a film, often Return of the Jedi, of the trilogy, while our parents went out for the evening. So much has come from this one film seven other feature films, those Ewok movies, a great cartoon series, as well as a horrible Holiday Special all set in the Star Wars Universe and then there is the space comedy Spaceballs, and the rumors of a Spaceballs sequel and even the Star Trek movies have a debt to pay to Star Wars.

Take some time this upcoming weekend and watch some Star Wars or even read some if that’s more your pace. I for one still have to get Rogue One before any marathon happens.

Silence (2016)

Silence is the Martin Scorsese film based on the Shusaku Endo book of the same name. I have previously written about the book and it bring out some big questions. Spoilers to follow. So I was looking forward to seeing a film adaptation of the novel. According to Wikipedia this film is the third in Scorsese’s trilogy of film epics about religious figures struggling with challenges to faith with Last Temptation of Christ and Kundun. Scorsese has said that the film is about “the necessity of belief fighting the voice of experience”.

The film follows the plot of the book but adds parts of the appendix to tell the whole story of Father Rodrigues.  We begin the film with news coming in about Father Ferreira (Liam Nesson) being lost, rumor has it he has apostatized. Fathers Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Garupe (Adam Driver) are tasked with finding out if there is any truth to these rumors. Rodrigues and Garupe set off from China with Kichijuro (Yōsuke Kubozuka) a drunken Japanese fisherman. They arrive in Japan and the Padres minister to the Christians hearing confessions and celebrating all the other sacraments as well. This is the story of the hidden Christians of Japan. Eventually, the Padres are separated and both captured and forced to refute their beliefs and step on an image of Christ “Fumi-e”. The story is Father Rodrigues as we follow him as the Inquisitor tries to get him to deny his faith and using the other Christians that they captured and pawns to get him to refute as they would be set free if and when Rodrigues refutes his faith.

This would be a great film to watch during Lent or if you have some passing interest in Japanese history or religion. Sure people have compared it with The Mission but it’s a completely different story told a world away. This is a book that is a great read so if you watch the film maybe take some time and read the book as well.

Fall televison preview

This past week was Upfronts where television networks go in front of all the ad people and tell them what they will be airing next television year. The ad people will buy based on ratings from this year for all the old shows and like place bids on newer shows.

Sunday: I don’t watch network stuff on Sunday to begin with with football and all that other stuff on in the afternoon. However I might check out Ghosted on FOX it’s like a comedy version of x-files along with the Simpsons.

Monday: CBS starts with a night of comedy Big Bang (to begin the season) along with newcomers 9JKL and Me, Myself and I. Out of these two the later seems like a better show from the trailer they showed.

Tuesday: This is going to be my problem night as there are three shows that I want to watch at the same time as The Mayor, Brooklyn 99 and The Good Place. Although it seems like B99 might get split up like it has been with the final season of New Girl, and Good Place is another 13 episode season

Wednesday: Looks like a night to skip television. However perhaps The CW’s take on Dynasty will be decent.

Thursday: After CBS’s football schedule ends they will offer a spin off of The Big Bang Theory all about Sheldon when he was young (this doesn’t look like something I would watch). NBC is hoping Will and Grace can restart Must See TV. Fox has a Star Trek parody show from Seth McFarland The Orville, I will at least give it a couple of episodes

Friday: ABC reshuffled it’s lineup moving both hour long fantasy shows, Once upon a time and the Marvel show (Inhumans for 8 episodes and Agents of SHIELD) to Friday will this move really make a difference as most people tape them and watch it later to begin with. CW moved Jane from Monday to Friday

Saturday: It is funny how Saturday have become the bastion of reruns, crime shows and college football as there is nothing on besides these two things.

What I missed above  there are the musicals happening at some point in time along with the following

ABC: also revived Roseanne and American Idol perhaps they will come in January
CBS: Added a bunch of dramas but there are still a couple of comedies in case something flops out of the gate.
CW: Black Lightning looks interesting and it is hopefully a refreshing take on a superhero show.
FOX: The X-Files is coming back for season 11 with 10 episodes, there is also an X-Men show called Gifted.
NBC: There are a bunch of comedies that were ordered but aren’t coming until after the Winter Olympics next year I guess.

Strange musical news

So with the success of NBC musical Live! they have two in the works currently with Bye Bye Birdie coming out this December/Holiday season and they have announced that they are going to have Jesus Christ Superstar next Easter. Fox has also been pretty successful with their Grease: Live will be doing two as well with A Christmas Story, based on the movie around Christmas time and they are also going to be doing RENT this seems like something FOX would be able to do as the network skews younger. Not to be left out ABC is putting it’s hat in the ring with one of their own. ABC announced that it will air The Wonderful World of Disney: The Little Mermaid Live!, a two-hour special is set to premiere Oct. 3, and is based  on the 1989 animated Disney film, blended with live musical performances. How this is going to be in anyone’s guess but it sounds like perhaps like a concert version of the musical. Hopefully there is some time between all these Live musical events. CBS is now the only major network without a live musical scheduled, perhaps next year.

All these TV musicals isn’t the strangest news that I read recently about musical  but that there is going to be a King Kong musical which is coming to Broadway. It sounds like a difficult musical as you need a gigantic ape to show up at some time, The show which opened in Australia way back in 2013 had groups of on-stage and off-stage puppeteers work to manipulate the large-scale Ape puppet. It sounds interesting as Jason Robert Brown is working on it but the selling point is the puppet/animatronic/marionette Kong.

NBC televised musicals

We’ve know about Bye Bye Birdie with Jennifer Lopez as Rosie that will be coming this upcoming December. This is be a modernized adaptation by Harvey Fierstein. The changes will be mostly to Albert and Rose’s occupations so it won’t be so sexist and old-fashioned. Instead of working in entertainment they will be High School teachers.  It sounds interesting but I’m not sure what all they are going to be changing besides that as it says some scenes are going to be reordered. It will be worth watching to see how they change it and if ABC’s version from 1995 is still the best film version of the show.

So this is the time of year where we get to hear a little bit about the upcoming television seasons as Upfronts are next week. NBC has announced that they will be presenting Jesus Christ Superstar next Easter. This is a logical time to do this musical but will it attract the same viewership as the December airing. NBC also has been sitting on the live production of A Few Good Men but no news about when this will be airing.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

The sequel to the surprise hit film from 2014 came out on Friday and it has been getting decent reviews from just about everywhere but most note that the sequel doesn’t live up to the original being weighed down by expectations, narrative problems and CGI bloat.  So I went to see it this weekend. Spoilers to follow.

The film is about family and who makes up a family we’ve got almost all characters doubting who they are. The movie begins with the team tasked on a mission by the Sovereign to protect some batteries from an inter-dimensional beast.  They win in the end and are thanked for their help, but Rocket steals some of the batteries and as they leave this leads to the team being chased after by the Sovereign’s ships, they are all destroyed by a mystery man “who is about an inch tall.” After the team’s ship crash lands, we learn that it was Star-Lord’s father who helped them escape. The team breaks up with Peter, Drax and Gamora going with Ego, Peter’s father to Ego’s world while Rocket and Groot are left to repair the ship and watch on their prisoner Nebula, Gamora’s sister. It’s a bit complicated as Ego want Peter to help him re-make the universe in his image. I find this bit the central problem of the film they never really explain why Ego needs to remake the world (or did they) I mean he can live forever until the light of his world is gone why not continue to do that instead of conquering the known universe. As expected The Guardians win in the end and will return in Vol 3 with music from a Zune.

The music is great and there are a few funny bit but the movie felt over done complete with the five mid/post credit scenes. There were several places where it should have been trimmed like the bit with Groot going and coming back several times to get Yondu’s fin. The film was fun and better than the over-bloated Avengers 2 (Ultron). There are two more Marvel movies this year (Spider-Man and Thor) and three more a year until 2020 perhaps we should slow down with these films and get some smaller films a chance to do something. It also seems like unconventional families seem to be the it thing to do in films nowadays.

Star Wars Day 2017

This year it will be light in huge announcements for Star Wars today the trailer for Last Jedi came out at Celebration last month and I doubt that we’d have anything major from the Han Solo movie yet. Perhaps something about the post 2020 films or maybe the long gestating television series is going to be made. It seems like the right time for a live action series taking place in the Star Wars Universe, it is bound to be good and the timing is right. Look at the success that Marvel (The Defenders) has had on Netflix as well as all their other series and those other streaming services like Hulu who’s Handmaid’s Tale is getting great reviews and Amazon Prime with Transparent. There are a lot of way to explore the universe and it could be multiple shows, does it need a Jedi or Sith in it to work or could we just have the average people living in the Empire. Not sure what would make a great show, but it would be wonderful if there were something besides the animated shows that explored the world of Star Wars.

Ok Computer

The iconic Radiohead album is turning 20 this year and they are re-releasing the album that’s been remastered with eight B-sides and three unreleased songs. This is really cool as that’s like a second album on top of OK Computer. It’s not often that band stay together and reinvent themselves with every album but Radiohead has prevailed the years. If you haven’t listen to this album or any of their more recent stuff I highly recommend it. This reissue will be out in June on digital and physically in July, there is also going to be a crazy special edition of it with a notebook and cassette added to the set. It sure is amazing how much this album has meant to people around the world.

Nintendo Switch

I finally broke down and picked up a Switch and Breath of the Wild and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. I’ve been playing Breath of the Wild the most and it is a fun game, haven’t gotten that far yet but it is a nice distraction from other things. The system is smaller than i thought it would be but it is amazing at the graphics that it puts out. However I am pacing myself a bit I mean it’s not like everyday I’ve played it.