This week’s new entertainment releases include Jewel’s first new studio album in seven years, former President Barack Obama narrating a five-part Netflix series about U.S. public lands and the return of “The Brothers Garcia” with a new name
Here’s a collection curated by The Associated Press’ entertainment journalists of what’s arriving on TV, streaming services and music platforms this week.
— Astonishingly, “Drive My Car” was not Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s only film last year. His acclaimed Haruki Murakami adaptation certainly got the most attention culminating in the International Feature Oscar win last month, but his three-part anthology film “Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy” deserves some more, too (it did win runner up at the Berlin Film Festival). The triptych follows three young women navigating romantic pursuits, ex loves and strange triangles. And it’ll be available to stream on the Criterion Channel starting Thursday. Don’t worry, this one clocks in at only two hours.
— Modern relationships, albeit French ones, are also at the heart of Jacques Audiard’s black and white “Paris, 13th District,” available on VOD on Friday from IFC Films. Adapted from Adrian Tomine’s graphic novels, the film follows various young Parisians living in the less-than-picturesque corner of the city of lights as they struggle to form real connections and relationships in a Tinder world. “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” fans should be excited to know that filmmaker Céline Sciamma helped co-write the film and Noémie Merlant co-stars.
— Continuing on the international streak of new films to stream this week, Filipino director Brillante Mendoza was inspired by the true story of boxer Naozumi Tsuchiyama for his drama “Gensan Punch,” which comes to HBO Max on Friday. The Japanese athlete with a prosthetic leg went to the Philippines to pursue boxing after being denied the opportunity in his home country.
— AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr
— Jewel’s first new studio album in seven years “Freewheelin’ Woman” finds her leaning into a soulful and groove-heavy sound. The single “Living With Your Memory” has her kicking up a retro but timeless R&B vibe with a full, horn-heavy band. “I’m rollin’/ rollin’/ rollin’/ Back the time,” she sings. On “Long Way ‘Round,” her voice switches gears thrillingly, as comfortable as a pair of favorite jeans. Jewel is also a contender on NBC’s new music competition series “American Song Contest,” where she represents the state of Alaska among rising and established artists from across the country competing for best song
— Guess who else is on “American Song Contest”? Electronic music outfit The Crystal Method, who will release their seventh studio album, “The Trip Out,” on Friday. A few days before — on Monday — The Crystal Method will represent Nevada on the NBC contest and debut their song “Watch Me Now.” The dance icons recently joined forces with Iggy Pop for “Post Punk,” a menacing, futuristic jam with a relentless beat that sounds perfect for a rave on a mission to Mars.
— AP Entertainment Writer Mark Kennedy
— Hugh Laurie wears just about every hat for BritBox’s “Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?” Laurie directed, produced, wrote and acts in the three-episode mystery series based on Agatha Christie’s 1934 novel of the same title — the final words of a murder victim. Lady Frances and her friend Bobby (Lucy Boynton, Will Poulter), who found the dying man, turn amateur detectives to solve the case. Laurie plays a sanatorium’s clinical director, which should be a good fit for the former Dr. Gregory House. The limited series debuts Tuesday on the streaming service.
— America’s national parks are undeniable gems, but not a monopoly. “Our Great National Parks,” a five-part Netflix series, takes a global view of public lands and the wildlife that inhabits them. Episode one hopscotches across parks and countries, including Hawaii’s Hanauma Bay; Loango National Park, Gabon; Yakushima National Park, Japan, and Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica. Subsequent episodes focus on Chilean Patagonia; Tsavo, Kenya; California’s Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, and Gunung Leuser in Indonesia. Former President Barack Obama produced and narrates the series debuting Wednesday.
— When “The Brothers Garcia” aired on Nickelodeon in the early 2000s, it was among the rare shows with a Latino cast and creators. Nearly two decades later, a reboot of the sitcom for HBO Max still represents a TV scarcity. “The Garcias” revolves around the San Antonio, Texas, family as they congregate for summer vacation at their beach house in Mexico. Actors reprising their roles from the original series include Jeffrey Licon, Bobby Gonzalez, Alvin Alvarez and Vaneza Pitynski as the Garcia siblings. Jeff Valdez, co-creator of the Nickelodeon show, created and is the showrunner for “The Garcias,” debuting Thursday on the streaming service.
— AP Television Writer Lynn Elber
Catch up on AP’s entertainment coverage here: https://apnews.com/apf-entertainment.
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