By Paul Anthony
Welcome to another edition of Roundabout and sorry for the delay, as we all know this has been a tough week for all of us. We know what has been going with the virus and how everything is shutting down for the next two weeks or so, and hopefully that will work.
Let’s get into some wrestling news because I touched upon this with my blog earlier regarding WWE biggest event WrestleMania but that is still a few weeks away but they do have shows to do. For a couple of days we knew Smackdown was going to be switched from Detroit to the Performance Center in Tampa without an audience. other sports leagues were thinking about doing this but instead just paused their seasons all together. Now we know Monday Night Raw which was suppose to take place here in Pittsburgh will now also be at the Performance Center. it’s sad for us here because we were all excited to see Stone Cold Steve Austin for the first time in 17 years and on 3 16 but now that will have to wait until next time. However we can expect that WWE will do their shows without the crowds for the next few weeks until things become safe again.
AMC which is one of the bigger movie theater chains will remain open even though most state governments have order that there should be no mass gathers. now I don’t know what AMC plans to do because movies are getting delayed left and right. I guess some companies want try to remain normal through this period of time.
As we know a lot of studios are pretty much shutting down production on all of their shows and movies. Netflix and Disney and AMC all pretty much came out and said their shows will not finish production at this moment.
T.V shows aren’t the only thing being pushed back. Some big time movies have pushed their release dates way back, here are some as of right now F9, No Time to Die, Lovebirds, Mulan, The New Mutants, A Quiet Place Part II, and Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway and My Spy. It’s unclear if more movies that are done will follow. We know Vin Diesel new film Bloodshot is expected to take the number 1 spot.
Now the next big film to be released is Black Widow which is set to come out in the first week of May and many are wondering if this film should get pushed back as well and I have my answer and as of right now it should be no. May is still over a month away and already because we are following in China’s foot steps we should be able to contain this outbreak, there are cases now where people already recovered from it. At the very least we should wait another three weeks or so and see if it got worse before we start to cancel the summer.
Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson announced that they tested positive for Covid-19 in Australia where Hanks was filming a new movie. he updated us with him saying they are taking things day by day. This is our first true case where we can see as a public of how bad it is or how bad we think it is. Here at Smash we want to say we hope Tom and Rita make a full recovery.
By Paul Anthony
Netflix seems to be on good track in 2020 with their films and shows. I recently reviewed The Witcher and I did enjoy it, when I enjoy one show I have to give them the chance again with another show. Now Locke and Key was starting to be advertised and once I finished with The Witcher I decided to give Locke and key a chance. Could Netflix struck gold again? Well at first I wasn’t so sure but as I watched the show the more and more I started to realize that I am enjoying it. Not to mention you can’t go wrong with a product that was created by Stephen King’s son Joe Hill though he doesn’t like to tell people who his father is , which is a good choice, now onto the show right?
This season which is the first season does consist of 10 episodes and each episode is between 40 to 60 minutes long. Now I know this series is based on the comic book series, which I have not read, I can’t say how close to the source it really is, I can only base the review off of what I watched. The season focuses on the Locke family as they move from their home in Seattle to Matheson, Massachusetts when the children loses their father Rendell who is murdered by a former student of his. This situation forces them to move to their father’s family Home and there after the three kids, Tyler, Kinsey and Bode begin to find keys that opens magical doors but then soon realize that opening these doors do cause problems and reveal stuff about their father that they never knew. All this magic and fun and learning they doing they also have to battle a demon that they basically helped release by opening doors that they knew nothing about. Slowly with the help of their friends they battle the demon and the monsters but little did they know that the demon did a body switch and prisoned the wrong person who was a friend of their father and one of their friends is now possessed to make matters worse and that is how the season ends.
Now when a show is ten episodes and an hour long, sometimes a story can be dragged out and I feel like that is what we have here. Please understand that I am not saying it was dragged out too much but at times it did seem like they were dragging. I did enjoy the horror and magic mixed together it was good blend. I did like the other highlight of seeing children grow from and deal with the trauma of losing their father. I am interested in seeing what happens in season two. If you looking for a good show to watch I would say you will enjoy this show much. In the end I am giving this show a good 80 percent or a B rating.
By Paul Anthony
I always have to praise Netflix’s original series, they do hit the spot with good reviews and I can see why. The documentaries that they do are on the good end of things so with that being said when they released this one because it had to do with football and Aaron that I had take a watch because I remember this situation like it was just yesterday. Here we have a modern day O.J. Simpson case. This however was unheard of because Aaron was very much an active Football player not only that he was a superstar at such an young age and was just rewarded a big contract from the New England Patriots. I have to admit that besides the basics I didn’t know much about this case until now.
Instead of having an 3 or so hour long movie of sorts they basically broke it up into three episodes for which each episode focused on a different aspect of Aaron’s life and case. In the first episode we get the story of his childhood and how he was raised with his family and just being an all around fun kid. Friends and family are interviewed so we can get an idea of Aaron was before the rise in football. Aaron was described as any other young football star in high school. As we hear the interviews we do see clips of him playing football and hits that he took at very young age. It’s revealed that His father was his backbone to keep him straight forward and pushed him mostly likely beyond his limits to be a football star.
In the second episode it talks about Aaron going to The University of Florida to play for the Gators and then we also learn that Aaron’s father had passed in 2006 and his mom wasted no time to bring in another guy. This was the first signed that we saw that Aaron’s life was held together by his father. Now in Florida and enjoying being a superstar in college. Aaron starts to have a change in his behavior after he realize he could get away with anything because football down there was everything and as long as you win it doesn’t matter. Then the episode starts to shift to him being drafted and scouts made it clear this guy had social problems but his talent was worth it. Once in New England he became a star again and once again the trouble followed because now it was revealed he was involved in the murder of his friend Odin Lloyd, who he meant through his girlfriend.
In The final episode it mostly breaks down the murder case and Aaron’s life behind bars and the trials he was at and we see first hand the affects of his actions and honestly the affects that football has on our culture. The show clips of fans Aaron’s protesting that he is innocent and they disregard that there is another family that is hurting because of him. In the end they reveal that Aaron had CTE from all the hits that he took from high school through the pros.
This was a very strong emotional documentary because it showed us how football really is above everything even above Life and Death. In the end Aaron is gone and the people around was affect by his actions and Football needs to make changes and preach to people that this game can change one’s life for the better and for the worse and in the end it is clear they are the true Villain where Aaron was a henchmen and Odin was a victim.
By Paul Anthony
When The Game Of Thrones ended I did feel lost in some ways because it was one of my favorite shows and it grew on me. Then I heard Netflix was doing a show that was almost like that and the show would be based on a book series called The Witcher. Like Game of Thrones I never read the books so I wasn’t too sure if I would be into this series or not. Then It was released and I started to see everyone talk about it and of course I had to watch it and give it a try to see what the hype was about. Now I have to ask myself was the hype worth it? Could this fill the void that Game Of Thrones left behind?
The show does different from Game Of Thrones where the main characters which are three of them nearly chooses the paths they go on because of their abilities except the youngest of the three where the main characters of G.O.T didn’t really have a choice. The One thing I found to be almost annoying with show is the time jump with the stories of the main characters. First we have the true main character Geralt of Rivia, played by Henry Cavill. Geralt is a Witcher who hunts monsters and magic creatures of that nature. We are told that a Witcher has special abilities to fight these magic beings. He linked by destiny to princess Cirilla “Ciri”, who is the crown princess of Cintra. She to has magical powers that she receives from her grandmother, the powers skipped Ciri’s mother. Then we have a half elf and half human but is deformed because of it, she learns to become a mage and at the cost of fertility she rids herself of her deformity. Sooner rather then later these three will cross paths and we learn how they will do it.
Each episode follows the characters but what we learn through out the season is that there is a time hop. So one character could be in a different time period then another character. In Season one Geralt’s stories happen over a 12-15 year period and Ciri’s is more like a month and Yennefer of Vengerberg, happens over a 70 year period. I won’t lie it does get confusing so watching every scene is important and have pay attention to detail. I do love a show that makes you think and pay attention.
Now the show isn’t without flaws though. Character development was at a weak point, the back and forth with the characters didn’t really help the cause with the development. They did say they will fix this problem in season two so at least they know. Now certain costumes that people were wearing did look like the creative department were lazy but once again they saw their problem and heard the reviews. I do like this show overall and minus those few things I am giving it a good 80 percent and recommend you giving it a try, only sad thing is we have to wait until beginning of next year to see season 2!
By Paul Anthony
Netflix is no doubt is becoming bigger and bigger and with that being said, they are recruiting big time people in the game but they also are starting to recruit big time directors. Michael bay is one of those directors. Here we have a big budget film which the budget is around 150 million and the film was lead by Ryan Reynolds and even have Dave Franco in the film as well though his character doesn’t survive long, sadly he is the first member to get killed and that is pretty much it for him with this film.
Now the plot is basic which you can understand for a Michael bay film, basically you have people who have fallen off the face of the earth or ” die” and become “ghosts” as they call themselves and they go off and fight crimes to make the world a better place. The group is led by Ryan who goes by the name of one, which is the rule of the group. they don’t know anyone’s real name they just go by numbers which means they don’t have ties to each other and that means less emotions when someone dies. Though that aspect goes out the door because 4 teammates start to date each other which One finds out later. In short the group loses just one member which One recruits another member and he becomes number 7. they train for what will be their first true mission and in the end they succeed and part of the rules are when the mission is over they part ways until they are needed again and so they do.
Now like I said this a bay film so it had no real story but his bread and butter is the action. Now with that being said and with the budget the action scenes were a big step in the right direction for Netflix. I know they operate a little different because I often think how would this film do making money if it was release in theaters. Well From a 150 million dollar budget and the time it was actually released and most of the reviews I would say you would be looking at around 500 million dollar movie which would make it some what of a successful film. Now the question becomes how would I rate this film? With everything I just said I do think it wasn’t a bad film. The story doesn’t make you over think about the plot and it’s simple and the action was there enough to overcome everything else. In the end I am giving it 70 percent. It was average film in my eyes, now am I curious for a sequel, yes I am but we shall!
By: Justin Hopkins
Hello and welcome to another roundabout. Hope you all had a great week. As always, bringing my thought on rumors and news from around the entertainment world in the past week, and a little longer to touch on one rumor. With all of that said, let’s jump right in with the big Marvel story from the week, in Doctor Strange and the loss of the director.
It is a shame to see Scott Derrickson dropping out of the Multiverse Of Madness, sequel to Dr. Strange, especially due to creative differences. Was a big fan of the first movie, and felt Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance in Infinity War and the climax of Endgame definitely hyped up the urge to see his return. At the same time, not going to panic over it at the same time. Marvel has been a consistent machine at pumping out solid movies and with them having similar issues with the first Antman, they have some experience in righting the ship from creative differences with Directors. Hope that they can find a way to reconcile with Scott, but if not. Still hyped for this sequel.
Going from the big screen to the smaller one and movement on a remake of the classic 1981 Werewolf movie, The Howling, coming to Netflix. The announcement came in the form of Director Andy Muschietti working on an adaption for Netflix, which I find really exciting. Andy has said before that The Howling was a dream project for him to work on, and The Howling does have a rich story with some room to grow and take into different directions, and like all remakes, even if they don’t live up to expectations. Still have the classic to enjoy.
From there we go to the world of Video Games, and before I go into this one, need to stress that this is just a rumor. I tried to find something official but at this point, all I can find is speculation, but as a Sony player. Feel the need to give my two cents on this one. It has to do with various sites reporting that the PS5 will be backward compatible. Going all the way back to Playstation 1. If this is true, I would be elated. Would be satisfied with PS3 and over the moon to access PS2, but getting them all would be fantastic, and they really need that feature to compete with Xbox, who has announced that the X Series will do just that. With the PS5 due up later this year, really wish Sony would put out some official statements to curb some of the rumor trains. In the meantime, I have my fingers crossed that this rumor carries weight.
Speaking of games, we got a bit of what to expect from Resident Evil Nemesis. This is such a small thing to be excited for a game that I am pretty much Pre-Ordering the first chance I get, but they were talking about Nemesis himself, and to not expect what you remember. Learning from their time working on Mr. X in the remake of Resident Evil 2, and he will not work in scripted terms, but as he sees fit. Making him unpredictable and increase the horror factor. Also, Carlos will have a playable section, which will add even more new content. Truth be told, I am super excited for this game and any reason I can find to talk about it; I jump. Releases on April 13th, barring any delays and please, don’t let there be any delays. Need a new game to play.
There is a few trailers that have dropped. New Mutants and Birds of Prey seem to be the big ones, but have given up trailers for New Year Resolutions. Going to do my best to avoid trailers, after the first ones, because I am tired of them spoiling aspects of the movie after the first trailer drops, and encourage everyone to follow my example. #Nomorespoilersintrailers.
In close, want to congratulate Frozen 2 on becoming the highest grossing animated movie of all time, and hope you all enjoyed this week’s edition of the roundabout. As always…
Thanks for reading.
By Paul Anthony
So I know it is a year late basically but it is almost Christmas time and it was time to do a Christmas movie review. Now Netflix has been coming strong with the movies with having some big names attached to their projects. This film starred Kurt Russell as Santa Clause and Goldie Hawn as Mrs. Clause though she makes a cameo in this film though I have to wonder in the sequel if she will have a bigger role in the next film.
So the film starts in the opening credits, we see a family that continues to grow with each clip, we see the children grow then the opening credits end and we notice that the father is no longer with the family which we learn he had died in between the Christmases. This causes the son to become a rebel or future criminal of sorts. When the mother has to work and the brother Teddy has to watch his younger sister Kate against his will things go wrong when Kate spots Santa. The duo comes together to catch Santa and to the shock of Teddy, Santa is real and they begin to follow him and the see the reindeers and the sleigh, the whole nine yards but once they get in the sleigh and cause basically an accident and then the whole night becomes ruin and Santa fears that Christmas might be ruin if they don’t correct the wrong and fix the sleigh which leads them on a goose chase.
When everything comes together Teddy realizes that Santa could have solved the problem with his magic in a matter of seconds and Santa reveals that this was plan to help Teddy to get his Christmas sprit back in which he does in the end when we find out that Teddy did write Santa and all he wanted was to see his father one last time and Santa does his best by giving him a magic ornament in which his father tells him that he is proud of him.
The story was pretty much predictably but still one that with the right plot points were able to touch the heart. Having Kurt Russel as a Santa was a good touch to the film and have to admit I thought he was the best part of the film. Though the acting from the kids was a little stiff at times I didn’t see them really hurting the film. The Writing was basic as well you saw with the lost of the father, it was going to touch the heart which is a basic element of a Christmas movie. In the end I am giving this film an 7 out 10 or a good 70 percent. Though it was basic it still did enough to please the heart!
By Paul Anthony
Here in this blog we are soon approaching the first full month of Disney Plus and I sat back thought man I should review this streaming service that had so much hype. This streaming service once had the nickname Netflix Killer just like how Netflix killed the rental industry. So did it really have that type of impact? My answer is no in the end Disney plus is great but never lived up being the so called Netflix killer. I’ll break it down for you.
Day 1 here we go people were so excited since we heard stories of all the shows they were going to have but the problem most of those shows weren’t actually finished just yet. Sure we had a few new shows and few movies, the biggest show that is taking center stage is the Star Wars show The Mandalorian with the bounty hunter who has no name yet and baby Yoda which isn’t his name but that is what everyone is calling him. When they bought Fox we knew the Simpsons would be on their way to Disney plus and sure enough they were on there. Yet Family guy wasn’t once again there is a fan base that is lost that Disney didn’t jump on. As a Marvel fan I am exciting for all the Marvel shows that are coming yet they were no where near ready which is bummer. We all know we love to binge watch shows on these streaming services and I get it Disney wanted to be different but not having resume feature at first was a joke. They did add this feature but only after the fact when the fans started to cry that this didn’t make sense and they were right. How could they could they miss something so simple, I’m not sure.
Last also go back to the launch and how it nearly crash the website, I get that certain things you can’t predict but you should have expected people would flock in the millions to sign up and log in and right off the bat watch their favorite shows, I mean Darkwing Duck was trending at one point and I loved singing the Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers song over and over again. If there is one thing Disney plus did was it brought back our childhood but that is all, no it is not a Netflix killer as many people called it, truth is as of right now it is another streaming service with great content at a cheap price and in the end its the cable companies that need to worry not Netflix.
By Paul Anthony
Okay now I love Mafia movies I really do and I love Mafia movies made from Martin Scorsese. I love Goodfellas and Casino and even The Departed. When I heard about this film I was excited I mean who wouldn’t just look at the talent leading the way. Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Al Pacino and you had the normal Italian actors playing the Mafia roles. Like many Mafia movies it tells a story at a slow pace and builds a good strong character development which is a key to the success of this type of movie but this film had one major problem and that was it just didn’t know when to end!
The Movie tells the story of Frank Sheeran or his nickname is the Irishmen, but it is from his perspective which many don’t fully believe but anyway he tells his story that he was a war veteran and became a truck driver by trade but began to sell his meat from his trucks to local Mafias and when he got caught, they bailed him out then that’s when he began working for the mafia as a hitman. The film then shifts to a time where he becomes friends with Jimmy Hoffa and sadly because of Hoffa wouldn’t listen to the Mafia, Frank who try to warned him had no other choice but to kill him, which historians and detectives dispute this claim and bunch of other kills Frank claims that he did.
The Movie made not be the most accurate film but it this did come from Frank himself which many claim that he was lying but no there is no evidence that says he wasn’t either. I won’t knock the film for that because he was telling the story and they wanted to tell Frank’s story then this is what he told them. Now there is a issue I have with casting and that was they casted Anna Paquin as Frank’s oldest daughter Peggy, the woman is seen for a few minutes and not given one line yet she is the reason for Frank confessing everything, I don’t know if they were on a tight budget because they used most of it to de age the main cast for their flashback scenes and all they could get was Anna with no lines to me this just seems like a waste of casting and money to that matter. Frank made had a long story to tell rather it was fact or fiction but this movie didn’t need to tell every single word of it.
In the end I am giving this film a B or 83 percent, I liked it and thought it had a lot of good going towards it but the poor casting of a few people and the length just ruin it to me but if you have time and I do mean if you have time then take a watch!
By: Justin Hopkins
It can be pretty intimidating huh. What started out as a few, allowing you to cut the expensive cord of cable. Has seem to grow into a monster. Even doing research for this list they just kept coming and coming. Every Channel and Brand and Sport all seem to be rolling out new one every month it seems and if you want to keep up with your favorite form of medium. You have to sign and pay up to do so, and of course, they can’t seem to share among themselves to help out, but we are not helpless. We have the power to go through and check them out ahead of time, and see which ones are best suited for our viewing needs and today we are going to do just that. I am going to go through them and talk about them in some detail and whether or not I would suggest it. Without further ado, let’s start with one of the originators, Netflix.
Blogger Note. I am going to skip Youtube and Twitch. I know you can get great material on both. Binge watch a lot of Youtube myself. Just don’t really count either as streaming services. No matter what they say about Youtube red. Don’t pay for Youtube. If you find a Youtuber or Streamer you like, give to their patron and help them out directly.
I remember running to and from the post office. Eager to get my DVD from Netflixs. God, I feel old. Anyways, Hulu may have beat them to the punch on streaming, but in my opinion, Netflix seemed to perfect it. They had a good blend of movies we were looking for and their own original programing. House of Cards, Orange Is The New Black, Marvel, Castlevania, Disenchantment, Stranger Things. Even their movies deliver. They seem to be taking a lot of hits in the wake of Disney Plus and an even bigger one when HBO Max debuts, but for my money. Netflix is still a must have in my book. For their original content alone. Prices can bit much, but worth every dollar.
I have never seen the appeal behind Hulu. Always just been kind of boring. Mostly, because what I watch I can find through other services. When there biggest selling point is based on catching up on shows you missed and those shows will soon be accessible through other means. Think Hulu may be in more trouble than any of the rest. There original content has never appealed to me and the prices range from cheap at 5.99 to the more crazy at 50. I understand going the Hulu route, but do yourselves a favor and combo them up with Disney and Espn Plus.
The newest one to the table and one of the best. There is very little that I don’t enjoy about it. Mandalorian has been enjoyable and the clone wars cartoon. The world according to Jeff Goldblum has been a blast. The entire run of the simpsons, and can binge watch them over and over again. They have so many of the cartoons from my childhood. Multiple Spider-man ones. Some that I was too young for and Earth’s Mightiest and Avengers Assemble. There was an issue with episode order for the X-men, but that is such a minor problem that it is barely noticable and will probably be worked out soon. Then we go to Bug’s Life and Lilo and Stitch and we are talking my language. A steal for 6.99 a month or 12.99 if you bundle it. This is a must for streaming services.
The third in the combo, and make it quick. If you don’t combo it, don’t. Even if you are the biggest sports fan. Can’t imagine this being worth while. You can always listen to the game on radio and stats almost anywhere. It is cheap, at 5 dollars a month, but still five dollars to much. Bundle or skip.
Had no interest in this till I got it for free and now one of my most used. Especially for B Movie Sunday. I am not quite sure the price, but seems you need a membership to Amazon Prime first which is 119 dollars a year, 12.99 dollars a year. As much as I love it, it drives me up a wall at the same time. While they have a massive selection of movies. Seems a large chunk of movies you want to watch, you’ll be paying to rent or buy. The buying part is nice, but when you are already paying for the service. Kind of feeling a bit ripped off paying again, but can understand why. The original content is solid, with the likes of The Boys and Good Omens. For what you get though, and the amazon benefits. It ain’t that bad of a deal. Especially for movie junkie.
This is one I don’t have ad it infuriates me so much that I can’t get it, cause I want it so bad. It’s library consists of horror movies and the remake of Creepshow, but because they don’t accept my card. Shudder please fix this. Meanwhile, if you are a horror movie fan, this should be high on your list.
Basic Cable Channels
Alright, I am kind of cheating by combining them, but since only one is getting the nod here. It’ll be fine. Can’t imagine why I would want CBS Access or NBC and I don’t even think they cost anything. Peacock maybe when they launch to watch the new Psych movie, but that would be it. Would suggest The CW, because as far as TV programing. They have the best shows on television. Arrowverse is still going and getting better by the week. You can find older stuff on CW Seed, such as Constantine and the animated movie. Birds of Prey and Everyone Hates Chris and Whose Line Is It Anyways. The CW and CW Seed are the only one of the basic channel ones I would even bother with.
Okay, here me out. I know, that it comes with ads, but it is nowhere near as bad as TV, and they really do offer so much. They got some really good TV shows and thousands of movies. From great ones in the past to some strange and bizarre ones. You can literally get lost in all of their content. It’s completely free so costs nothing to give it a shot. You’ll really enjoy yourself and if not, haven’t lost anything.
My most neglected one. I really enjoy what little anime I have watched and am all ears if you want to drop your favorites in the comment section to guide me to the good ones. I definitely suggest it, for Dragon Ball Library alone and they have just, so much anime to pick from. I know Crunchyroll is a big one as well, but suggest Funimation over it, and will go more into why later down the line.
I love this streaming service. The access to Comic Books and there lineup is vastly Underrated. DC animated has always been the gold bar and you can find it all there. The Batman animated show in all its glory. Old School Justice League and Adventures of Lois and Clark. The animated movies are all spectacular and Their shows. Swamp Thing, Doom Patrol, Titans and Harley Quinn Animated soon to join the frey. There is no other streaming service I will pull for harder, than DC Universe. At 7.99 a month, you won’t be disappointed and hope they don’t merge with the next one on the list.
This one has yet to debut, but is boosting a powerhouse of a library. Rick and Morty, Friends, Big Bang Theory, Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, and Doctor Who. Movies such as Conjuring, 2001 A Space Oddity, Matrix. Looney Tunes, Sesame Street. They have TNT, TBS, Adult Swim, CNN, Max, And Tru. With TNT they can look to add AEW PPVS and rival WWE even more than they are now. Along with access to DC and Crunchyroll meaning they could very well combo CrunchyRoll and DC Universe into the 14.99 dollar price, which would be the only way I am going to sign up for this one. This may well be a massive hit, and do hope them the best, but for the asking price. Just don’t see any reason to add it on to my budget without Crunchy and DCU along with the mix.
I know I missed a handful. Probably some obvious ones, but has to end at some time. I know my opinion will not be shared by some, but that is the best part of this. Yes, there is so much streaming going on, but that means there is so much more for us to explore. New shows to discover. Old ones are back for us to reminisce and bring back memories of when we first watched them and share with friends.
Thanks for reading.