Movie and TV Reviews

Sneak Preview Spotlight

Ghostbusters: Afterlife (Photo by Kimberley French/Columbia Pictures)

Reviews for New Movies Releasing September 3 – October 29, 2021

The Addams Family 2 (Image courtesy of Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures)
Ascension (Photo by Jessica Kingdon/MTV Documentary Films)
Blue Bayou (Photo courtesy of Focus Features)
The Card Counter (Photo courtesy of Focus Features)
Copshop (Photo courtesy of Open Road Films)
Dating & New York (Photo courtesy of IFC Films)
Dear Evan Hansen (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)
The Eyes of Tammy Faye (Photo courtesy of Searchlight Pictures)
Falling for Figaro (Photo courtesy of IFC Films)
Halloween Kills (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)
I’m Your Man (Photo courtesy of Bleecker Street)
It Takes Three (Photo courtesy of Gunpowder & Sky)
Karen (Photo courtesy of Quiver Distribution)
Lamb (Photo courtesy of A24 Films)
The Last Duel (Photo by Patrick Redmond/20th Century Studios)
Los Últimos Frikis (Photo courtesy of Topic)
Malignant (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/Warner Bros. Pictures)
Mass (Photo by Ryan Jackson-Healy/Bleecker Street)
No Time to Die (Photo by Nicola Dove/Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures)
The Nowhere Inn (Photo courtesy of IFC Films)
Queenpins (Photo courtesy of STX)
Saving Paradise (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios)
Small Engine Repair (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
Tango Shalom (Photo courtesy of Vision Films)
Time Is Up (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
Titane (Photo by Carole Bethuel/Neon)
Tom Petty, Somewhere You Feel Free: The Making of Wildflowers (Photo courtesy of Tom Petty Legacy, LLC/Warner Music Group)
Venom: Let There Be Carnage (Photo courtesy of Columbia Pictures)
We Need to Do Something (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)
Wild Indian (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
Witch Hunt (Photo courtesy of Momentum Pictures)
Yakuza Princess (Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing)


Complete List of Reviews

1BR — horror

2/1 — drama

2 Graves in the Desert — drama

2 Hearts — drama

2 Minutes of Fame — comedy

5 Years Apart — comedy

7 Days (2021) — comedy

8 Billion Angels — documentary

The 8th Night — horror

9to5: The Story of a Movement — documentary

12 Hour Shift — horror

12 Mighty Orphans — drama

17 Blocks — documentary

37 Seconds — drama

76 Days — documentary

The 420 Movie (2020) — comedy

499 — docudrama

2040 — documentary

7500 — drama

Aamis — drama

Abe — drama

About Endlessness — comedy/drama

Above Suspicion (2021) — drama

The Addams Family 2 — animation

Adverse — drama

Advocate — documentary

The Affair (2021) (formerly titled The Glass Room) — drama

After Class (formerly titled Safe Spaces) — comedy/drama

After Parkland — documentary

After Truth: Disinformation and the Cost of Fake News — documentary

Ailey — documentary

AKA Jane Roe — documentary

Algorithm: Bliss — sci-fi/horror

All Day and a Night — drama

All I Can Say — documentary

All In: The Fight for Democracy — documentary

All Light, Everywhere — documentary

All My Life — drama

All My Puny Sorrows — drama

All Roads to Pearla (formerly titled Sleeping in Plastic) — drama

All the Bright Places — drama

Almost Love (also titled Sell By) — comedy/drama

Alone (2020) (starring Jules Willcox) — horror

Alone (2020) (starring Tyler Posey) — horror

Amazing Grace (2018) — documentary

American Fighter — drama

An American Pickle — comedy

American Street Kid — documentary

American Woman (2020) — drama

Ammonite — drama

Amulet — horror

And Then We Danced — drama

Annette — musical

Another Round — drama

Antebellum — horror

Anthony — drama

Apocalypse ’45 — documentary

The Apollo — documentary

The Arbors — sci-fi/horror

The Argument — comedy

Army of the Dead (2021) — horror

Artemis Fowl — fantasy

The Artist’s Wife — drama

Ascension (2021) — documentary

Ask for Jane — drama

Ask No Questions — documentary

As of Yet — comedy/drama

The Assistant — drama

At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal — documentary

Athlete A — documentary

Attack of the Murder Hornets — documentary

Baby God — documentary

Babysplitters — comedy

Babyteeth — drama

Bacurau — drama

Bad Boys for Life — action

Bad Detectives (formerly titled Year of the Detectives) — drama

Bad Education (2020) — drama

Bad Therapy (formerly titled Judy Small) — comedy/drama

Ballad of a White Cow — drama

Banana Split — comedy

Banksy and the Rise of Outlaw Art — documentary

Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar — comedy

Beanpole — drama

Beast Beast — drama

Beastie Boys Story — documentary

Becoming — documentary

Behind You — horror

Beneath Us — horror

Big Time Adolescence — comedy/drama

The Big Ugly — drama

Billie (2020) — documentary

Bill & Ted Face the Music — sci-fi/comedy

The Binge — comedy

Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) — action

Black Bear — drama

Blackbird (2020) — drama

Black Box (2020) — horror

Black Is King — musical

Black Magic for White Boys — comedy

Black Widow (2021) — action

Blast Beat — drama

Blessed Child — documentary

Blithe Spirit (2021) — comedy

Blood and Money — drama

Blood Conscious — horror

Blood on Her Name — drama

Bloodshot (2020) — sci-fi/action

Bloody Hell — horror

Blow the Man Down — drama

Blue Bayou (2021) — drama

Blue Story — drama

Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island — horror

Body Cam — horror

The Body Fights Back — documentary

Bố Già (Dad, I’m Sorry) — comedy/drama

Boogie — drama

The Booksellers — documentary

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm — comedy

The Boss Baby: Family Business — animation

The Boys (first episode) — action

Brahms: The Boy II — horror

Breaking Fast — comedy

Breaking News in Yuba County — comedy

Breslin and Hamill: Deadline Artists — documentary

The Broken Hearts Gallery — comedy

Brothers by Blood (formerly titled The Sound of Philadelphia) — drama

Browse — drama

Buckley’s Chance — drama

Buffaloed — comedy

Bully. Coward. Victim. The Story of Roy Cohn — documentary

Burden (2020) — drama

Burning Cane — drama

Burn It All — drama

The Burnt Orange Heresy — drama

Cactus Jack — horror

Cagefighter — drama

Calendar Girl — documentary

The Call of the Wild (2020) — live-action/animation

A Call to Spy — drama

Call Your Mother — documentary

Candyman (2021) — horror

Cane River — drama

Capone — drama

The Card Counter — drama

Carmilla — drama

Castle in the Ground — drama

Catch the Fair One — drama

Censor (2021) — horror

Centigrade — drama

Chance the Rapper’s Magnificent Coloring World — documentary

Changing the Game (2021) — documentary

Chasing the Present — documentary

Chasing Wonders — drama

Chehre — drama

Chick Fight — comedy

Children of the Sea — animation

Chinese Doctors — drama

Chop Chop — horror

Circus of Books — documentary

City of Lies — drama

The Clearing (2020) — horror

Clementine — drama

Cliff Walkers (formerly titled Impasse) — drama

The Climb (2020) — comedy/drama

Close Encounters of the Fifth Kind: Contact Has Begun — documentary

Clover — drama

Coachella: 20 Years in the Desert — documentary

CODA — comedy/drama

Coded Bias (formerly titled Code for Bias) — documentary

Coffee & Kareem — comedy

Collective — documentary

Color Out of Space — sci-fi/horror

The Columnist — horror

Come as You Are (2020)  — comedy

Come Play — horror

Come to Daddy — horror

Come True — sci-fi/drama

Coming 2 America — comedy

The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It — horror

Console Wars — documentary

Copshop (2021) — action

The Cordillera of Dreams — documentary

Count Basie: Through His Own Eyes — documentary

The Courier (2021) (formerly titled Ironbark) — drama

The Craft: Legacy — horror

Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words — documentary

Creem: America’s Only Rock’n’Roll Magazine — documentary

Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution — documentary

Crisis (2021) — drama

Critical Thinking — drama

Crock of Gold: A Few Rounds With Shane MacGowan — documentary

The Croods: A New Age — animation

Crown Vic — drama

CRSHD — comedy

Cruella — comedy/drama

Cryptozoo — animation

The Curse of Audrey Earnshaw — horror

Cut Throat City — drama

Da 5 Bloods — drama

Daddy Issues (2020) — comedy

Dads — documentary

Dangerous Lies — drama

Dara of Jasenovac — drama

The Dark Divide — drama

Dark Web: Cicada 3301 — action/comedy

Dating & New York — comedy

Dave Not Coming Back — documentary

A Day in the Life of America — documentary

Days of Rage: The Rolling Stones’ Road to Altamont — documentary

Days of the Whale — drama

A Deadly Legend — horror

Dear Evan Hansen — musical

Dear Santa — documentary

Death in Texas — drama

Decade of Fire — documentary

The Deeper You Dig — horror

Deerskin — comedy

The Delicacy — documentary

Demi Lovato: Dancing With the Devil — documentary

Demonic (2021) — horror

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba The Movie: Mugen Train — animation

Denise Ho — Becoming the Song — documentary

Desolation Center — documentary

Desperados — comedy

The Devil Below (formerly titled Shookum Hills) — horror

Devil’s Night: Dawn of the Nain Rouge — horror

Devil’s Pie – D’Angelo — documentary

Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy — documentary

Die in a Gunfight — action

Disappearance at Clifton Hill — drama

The Disappearance of Mrs. Wu — comedy/drama

Disclosure (2020) — documentary

Diving With Dolphins — documentary

The Djinn — horror

The Dog Doc — documentary

Dolittle — live-action/animation

Dolphin Island — drama

Dolphin Reef — documentary

Do Not Reply — horror

Don’t Breathe 2 — horror

Don’t Look Back (2020) (formerly titled Good Samaritan) — horror

The Doorman (2020) — action

Dosed — documentary

Downhill — comedy

Dream Horse — drama

Dreamland (2020) (starring Margot Robbie) — drama

Driven to Abstraction — documentary

Driveways — drama

Driving While Black: Race, Space and Mobility in America — documentary

The Dry — drama

Duty Free — documentary

Earwig — horror

Easy Does It — comedy

The East (2021) — drama

El Cuartito — comedy/drama

Elephant (2020) — documentary

Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things — documentary

Embattled — drama

Emma (2020) — comedy/drama

The Emoji Story (formerly titled Picture Character) — documentary

Endangered Species (2021) — drama

End of Sentence — drama

Enemies of the State (2021) — documentary

Enforcement (formerly titled Shorta) — drama

Enhanced (2021) (also titled Mutant Outcasts) — sci-fi/action

Enola Holmes — drama

Entwined (2020) — horror

Epicentro — documentary

Escape From Mogadishu — drama

Escape Room: Tournament of Champions — horror

The Etruscan Smile (also titled Rory’s Way) — drama

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga — comedy

Evil Eye (2020) — horror

The Evil Next Door — horror

Exit Plan — drama

Extraction (2020) — action

The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2021) — drama

F9 — action

Falling (2021) — drama

Falling for Figaro — comedy/drama

A Fall From Grace — drama

The Fallout — drama

Farewell Amor — drama

Fatal Affair (2020) — drama

Fatale — drama

The Father (2021) — drama

Fatima (2020) — drama

Fatman — comedy

Fear of Rain — horror

The Fight (2020) — documentary

Finding Kendrick Johnson — documentary

Finding You (2021) — drama

First Cow — drama

First Date (2021) — comedy

Flag Day — drama

Flashback (2021) (formerly titled The Education of Frederick Fitzell) — drama

Flipped (2020) — comedy

Force of Nature (2020) — action

The Forever Purge — horror

For They Know Not What They Do — documentary

The Forty-Year-Old Version — comedy

Four Good Days — drama

Four Kids and It — fantasy

Framing John DeLorean — documentary

Freaky — horror

Free Guy — action

French Exit — comedy/drama

Friendsgiving — comedy

From the Vine — comedy/drama

Funhouse (2021) — horror

Gaia (2021) — horror

Game of Death (2020) — horror

Ganden: A Joyful Land — documentary

The Garden Left Behind — drama

The Gasoline Thieves — drama

Gay Chorus Deep South — documentary

The Gentlemen — action

Get Duked! (formerly titled Boyz in the Wood) — comedy

Get Gone — horror

Ghostbusters: Afterlife — comedy/horror

The Ghost of Peter Sellers — documentary

A Girl From Mogadishu — drama

A Girl Missing — drama

A Glitch in the Matrix — documentary

The God Committee — drama

Godzilla vs. Kong — action

The Go-Go’s — documentary

Golden Arm — comedy

Goldie — drama

Good Posture — comedy

Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My Mind — documentary

Greed — comedy/drama

The Green Knight — horror/fantasy

Greenland — sci-fi/action

Gretel & Hansel — horror

Greyhound — drama

The Grudge (2020) — horror

Guest of Honour — drama

Gunda — documentary

Half Brothers — comedy

The Half of It — comedy

Halloween Kills — horror

Halloween Party (2020) — horror

Happiest Season — comedy

Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics — documentary

Haymaker (2021) — drama

Healing From Hate: Battle for the Soul of a Nation — documentary

He Dreams of Giants — documentary

Held — horror

Helmut Newton: The Bad and the Beautiful — documentary

Here After (2021) (formerly titled Faraway Eyes) — drama

Here Are the Young Men — drama

Here Today — comedy/drama

Hero Dog: The Journey Home — drama

Hero Mode — comedy

Herself — drama

The High Note — comedy/drama

His House — horror

The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard — action

Holler — drama

Holly Slept Over — comedy

Honest Thief — action

Hooking Up (2020) — comedy

Hope Gap — drama

Horse Girl — sci-fi/drama

The Host (2020) — horror

Hosts — horror

The House Next Door: Meet the Blacks 2 — comedy/horror

House of Hummingbird — drama

How It Ends (2021) — comedy

How to Build a Girl — comedy

How to Fix a Primary — documentary

Human Capital (2020) — drama

Human Nature (2020) — documentary

The Hunt — horror

Hunter Hunter — horror

Hysterical (2021) — documentary

I Am Human — documentary

I Am Somebody’s Child: The Regina Louise Story — drama

I Am Vengeance: Retaliation — action

I Carry You With Me — drama

If I Can’t Have You: The Jodi Arias Story — documentary

I Hate New York — documentary

I Hate the Man in My Basement — drama

I’m Gonna Make You Love Me — documentary

Impractical Jokers: The Movie — comedy

I’m Thinking of Ending Things — drama

I’m Your Man (2021) — sci-fi/comedy/drama

I’m Your Woman — drama

Incitement — drama

Infamous (2020) — drama

The Infiltrators — docudrama

The Informer (2020) — drama

Initials SG — drama

Inna De Yard: The Soul of Jamaica — documentary

In Our Mothers’ Gardens — documentary

Instaband — documentary

In the Earth — horror

In the Footsteps of Elephant — documentary

In the Heights — musical

The Invisible Man (2020) — horror

Iron Mask (formerly titled The Mystery of the Dragon Seal) — action

Irresistible (2020) — comedy

I Still Believe — drama

It Takes a Lunatic — documentary

It Takes Three (2021) — comedy

I Used to Go Here — comedy/drama

I’ve Got Issues — comedy

I Want My MTV — documentary

I Will Make You Mine — drama

Jakob’s Wife — horror

Jay Myself — documentary

Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey — musical

Joe Bell (formerly titled Good Joe Bell) — drama

John and the Hole — drama

John Henry — action

John Lewis: Good Trouble — documentary

JonBenét Ramsey: What Really Happened? — documentary

Judas and the Black Messiah (formerly titled Jesus Was My Homeboy) — drama

Judy & Punch — drama

Jungle Cruise — action

Jungleland (2020) — drama

Kajillionaire — comedy/drama

Karen (2021) — drama

Kat and the Band — comedy

Kaye Ballard: The Show Goes On! — documentary

Kid Candidate — documentary

Kill Chain: The Cyber War on America’s Elections — documentary

Killer Among Us — horror

Killer Therapy — horror

The Killing of Two Lovers — drama

The Kill Team (2019) — drama

Kill the Monsters — drama

The Kindness of Strangers — drama

Kindred — drama

The King of Staten Island — comedy/drama

Lakewood — drama

La Llorona — horror

Lamb (2021) — horror

Land (2021) — drama

Lansky (2021) — drama

The Last Duel (2021) — drama

The Last Full Measure — drama

The Last Vermeer — drama

The Lawyer — drama

Leftover Women — documentary

Les Misérables (2019) — drama

Let Him Go — drama

The Lie (2020) — drama

Life in a Day 2020 — documentary

Like a Boss — comedy

Limbo (2021) — comedy/drama

Limerence — comedy

Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice — documentary

Lingua Franca — drama

Little Fish (2021) — sci-fi/drama

The Little Things (2021) — drama

The Lodge — horror

The Longest Wave — documentary

Long Live Rock…Celebrate the Chaos — documentary

Long Weekend (2021) — sci-fi/drama

Lorelei (2021) — drama

Lost Bayou — drama

Lost Girls — drama

Lost Transmissions — drama

Los Últimos Frikis — documentary

Love and Monsters — sci-fi/horror/action

The Lovebirds — comedy

Love Sarah — comedy/drama

Love Type D — comedy

Love Wedding Repeat — comedy

Low Tide — drama

Luca (2021) — animation

Lucky Grandma — action

Luz: The Flower of Evil — horror

LX 2048 — sci-fi/drama

Lydia Lunch: The War Is Never Over — documentary

Ma Belle, My Beauty — drama

Mai Khoi & the Dissidents — documentary

The Main Event (2020) — action

Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound— documentary

Malignant (2021) — horror

Mallory (2021) — documentary

Mama Weed — comedy/drama

Mandibles — comedy

Mank — drama

The Man Who Sold His Skin — drama

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom — drama

Marathon (2021) — comedy

Mark, Mary & Some Other People — comedy

The Marksman (2021) — action

Martha: A Picture Story — documentary

Martin Margiela: In His Own Words — documentary

Masquerade (2021) — horror

Mass (2021) — drama

Maurice Hines: Bring Them Back — documentary

The Mauritanian — drama

Meat Me Halfway — documentary

Midnight in the Switchgrass — drama

Mighty Ira — documentary

Mighty Oak — drama

Military Wives — comedy/drama

The Mimic (2021) — comedy

Minari — drama

The Mindfulness Movement — documentary

Misbehaviour — drama

Miss Americana — documentary

Miss Juneteenth — drama

MLK/FBI — documentary

Moffie — drama

The Mole Agent — documentary

Monday (2021) — drama

Monster Hunter — sci-fi/action

Montana Story — drama

Mortal — sci-fi/action

Mortal Kombat (2021) — fantasy/action

Most Dangerous Game — action

Most Wanted (formerly titled Target Number One) — drama

Mr. Soul! — documentary

Mucho Mucho Amor: The Legend of Walter Mercado — documentary

Mulan (2020) — action

Murder in the Front Row: The San Francisco Bay Area Thrash Metal Story — documentary

Murder to Mercy: The Cyntoia Brown Story — documentary

My Boyfriend’s Meds — comedy

My Dad’s Christmas Date — comedy/drama

My Darling Vivian — documentary

My Love (2021) — comedy/drama

My Octopus Teacher — documentary

My Salinger Year (also titled My New York Year) — drama

My Spy — comedy

Mystify: Michael Hutchence — documentary

Naked Singularity — drama

Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind — documentary

The Nest (2020) — drama

Never Gonna Snow Again — drama

Never Rarely Sometimes Always — drama

Never Too Late (2020) — comedy

New Order (2021) — drama

News of the World — drama

A Nice Girl Like You — comedy

The Night (2021) — horror

The Night House — horror

Night of the Kings — drama

Nina Wu — drama

Nine Days — drama

Noah Land — drama

Nobody (2021) — action

Nocturne (2020) — horror

Nomad: In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin — documentary

Nomadland — drama

No Man’s Land (2021) — drama

No Small Matter — documentary

No Time to Die (2021) — action

Notturno — documentary

The Novice (2021) — drama

The Nowhere Inn — comedy/drama

Old — horror

The Old Guard — action

Olympia — documentary

Olympic Dreams — comedy/drama

On Broadway (2021) — documentary

Once Upon a River — drama

Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band — documentary

One Hour Outcall — drama

One Night in Bangkok — drama

One Night in Miami… — drama

Only — sci-fi/drama

On the Record — documentary

On the Rocks (2020) — drama

On the Trail: Inside the 2020 Primaries — documentary

Onward — animation

Open — drama

Ordinary Love — drama

Origin of the Species — documentary

Otherhood — comedy

The Other Lamb — drama

Other Music — documentary

Ottolenghi and the Cakes of Versailles — documentary

Our Friend (formerly titled The Friend) — drama

Our Ladies — comedy/drama

Our Time Machine — documentary

Out of Blue — drama

The Outpost — drama

Out Stealing Horses — drama

The Painter and the Thief — documentary

Palm Springs — comedy

Paper Spiders — drama

The Paper Tigers — action

Parallel (2020) — sci-fi/drama

Paranormal Prison — horror

Parkland Rising — documentary

A Patient Man — drama

PAW Patrol: The Movie — animation

A Perfect Enemy — drama

The Personal History of David Copperfield — comedy/drama

Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway — live-action/animation

Phobias (2021) — horror

The Photograph — drama

The Place of No Words — drama

The Planters — comedy

Playing God (2021) — comedy

Plucked — documentary

Plus One (2019) — comedy

The Pollinators — documentary

Pornstar Pandemic: The Guys — documentary

Port Authority (2021) — drama

Possessor Uncut — sci-fi/horror

Premature (2020) — drama

The Prey (2020) — action

The Price of Desire — drama

Profile (2021) — drama

Project Power — sci-fi/action

Promising Young Woman — comedy/drama

The Protégé (2021) — action

Proxima — sci-fi/drama

P.S. Burn This Letter Please — documentary

Public Enemy Number One — documentary

PVT CHAT — drama

Queenpins — comedy

The Quiet One — documentary

A Quiet Place Part II — sci-fi/horror

Quo Vadis, Aida? — drama

The Racer — drama

Radioactive — drama

Raging Fire — action

A Rainy Day in New York — comedy

Raising Buchanan — comedy

Rare Beasts — comedy

Raya and the Last Dragon — animation

Rebuilding Paradise — documentary

Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project — documentary

Red Penguins — documentary

Red Shoes and the Seven Dwarfs — animation

A Regular Woman — drama

Relic — horror

Reminiscence (2021) — sci-fi/drama

The Rental (2020) — horror

Rent-A-Pal — horror

The Rescue List — documentary

Resistance (2020) — drama

Respect (2021) — drama

Retaliation (formerly titled Romans) — drama

Rewind — documentary

The Rhythm Section — action

The Ride (2020) — drama

Ride Like a Girl — drama

Riders of Justice — drama

Ride the Eagle — comedy/drama

The Right One — comedy

Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go For It — documentary

River City Drumbeat — documentary

RK/RKAY — comedy

Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain — documentary

Roald Dahl’s The Witches — horror/fantasy

Robert the Bruce — drama

The Rookies (2021) — action

Run (2020) — drama

Runner — documentary

Run With the Hunted — drama

Rushed — drama

Ruth: Justice Ginsburg in Her Own Words — documentary

Safer at Home — drama

Saint Frances — comedy/drama

Saint Maud — horror

Saloum — horror

Save Yourselves! — sci-fi/horror/comedy

Saving Paradise — drama

The Scheme (2020) — documentary

Scheme Birds — documentary

School’s Out Forever — horror

Scoob! — animation

Scream, Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street — documentary

Screened Out — documentary

Seahorse: The Dad Who Gave Birth (formerly titled Seahorse) — documentary

Seberg — drama

The Secret: Dare to Dream — drama

A Secret Love — documentary

The Secrets We Keep — drama

See Know Evil — documentary

See You Yesterday — sci-fi/drama

Selah and the Spades — drama

Separation (2021) — horror

Sergio (2020) — drama

Sesame Street: 50 Years of Sunny Days — documentary

Settlers (2021) — sci-fi/drama

The Seventh Day (2021) — horror

Shadows of Freedom — documentary

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings — action

She Dies Tomorrow — drama

She’s in Portland — drama

Shine Your Eyes — drama

Shirley — drama

Shithouse — comedy/drama

Shortcut — horror

The Short History of the Long Road — drama

Showbiz Kids — documentary

The Show’s the Thing: The Legendary Promoters of Rock — documentary

Siberia (2021) — drama

Silk Road (2021) — drama

A Simple Wedding — comedy

The Sinners (2021) (formerly titled The Color Rose) — horror

Six Minutes to Midnight — drama

Ski Bum: The Warren Miller Story — documentary

Skin Deep: The Battle Over Morgellons — documentary

Skin Walker — horror

Skyman — sci-fi/drama

Slay the Dragon — documentary

Small Engine Repair (2021) — comedy/drama

Smiley Face Killers — horror

Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins — action

Sno Babies — drama

Somebody Up There Likes Me (2020) — documentary

Some Kind of Heaven — documentary

Sometimes Always Never — comedy/drama

The Sonata — horror

Songbird — sci-fi/drama

Sonic the Hedgehog — live-action/animation

Sorry We Missed You — drama

Soul — animation

Sound of Metal — drama

Space Jam: A New Legacy — live-action/amination

Spaceship Earth — documentary

The Sparks Brothers — documentary

Spell (2020) — horror

Spelling the Dream (formerly titled Breaking the Bee) — documentary

Spiral (2021) — horror

Spirit Untamed — animation

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run — live-action/animation

Spontaneous — sci-fi/horror/comedy

Sputnik — sci-fi/horror

Standing Up, Falling Down — comedy/drama

Stardust (2020) — drama

Starting at Zero — documentary

The State of Texas vs. Melissa — documentary

Stealing School — comedy/drama

Stevenson Lost & Found — documentary

Still Here (2020) — drama

Stillwater (2021) — drama

The Story of Soaps — documentary

The Stranger (Quibi original) — drama

Stray (2021) — documentary

Stray Dolls — drama

Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street — documentary

Street Survivors: The True Story of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Plane Crash — drama

The Stylist — horror

Subjects of Desire — documentary

Sublime — documentary

Sugar Daddy (2021) — drama

The Suicide Squad — action

Summerland — drama

Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) — documentary

The Sunlit Night — comedy/drama

Supernova (2021) — drama

The Surrogate — drama

Survive — drama

Swallow — drama

Swan Song (2021) — comedy/drama

Sweet Thing (2021) — drama

The Swerve — drama

The Swing of Things — comedy

Sylvie’s Love — drama

Synchronic — sci-fi/horror

Take Back — action

Tango Shalom — comedy/drama

Tape (2020) — drama

Tar — horror

A Taste of Sky — documentary

Ted Bundy: American Boogeyman  — horror

Ten Minutes to Midnight  — horror

Terrorizers  — drama

Tesla  — drama

Then Came You (2020)  — comedy

They Call Me Dr. Miami — documentary

The Thing About Harry  — comedy

Think Like a Dog — comedy/drama

This Is Personal — documentary

This Is Stand-Up — documentary

Those Who Wish Me Dead — drama

A Thousand Cuts (2020) — documentary

A Thread of Deceit: The Hart Family Tragedy — documentary

Through the Night (2020) — documentary

Tijuana Jackson: Purpose Over Prison — comedy

Time (2020) — documentary

Time Is Up (2021) — drama

The Times of Bill Cunningham — documentary

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made  — comedy

Titane — horror

The Tobacconist — drama

Together (2021) — comedy/drama

Together Together — comedy/drama

To Kid or Not to Kid — documentary

To Kill the Beast — drama

Tom and Jerry — live-action/animation

Tommaso — drama

Tom of Your Life — sci-fi/comedy

Tom Petty, Somewhere You Feel Free: The Making of Wildflowers — documentary

Too Late (2021) — horror/comedy

Totally Under Control — documentary

Trafficked: A Parent’s Worst Nightmare — drama

The Tragedy of Macbeth — drama

The Trial of the Chicago 7 — drama

The Trip to Greece — comedy

Trixie Mattel: Moving Parts — documentary

Trolls World Tour — animation

Troop Zero — comedy

The True Adventures of Wolfboy — drama

The Truffle Hunters — documentary

Trust (2021) — drama

The Truth — drama

The Turning (2020) — horror

The Twentieth Century — comedy

Two of Us (2021) — drama

Tyson — documentary

Unbelievable (premiere episode) — drama

Uncaged (also titled Prey) – horror

Uncorked — drama

Under the Volcano (2021) — documentary

Underwater — sci-fi/horror

Undine (2021) — drama

Unhinged (2020) — action

The Unholy (2021) — horror

The United States vs. Billie Holiday — drama

Un Rescate de Huevitos — animation

The Unthinkable — drama

Up From the Streets: New Orleans: The City of Music — documentary

Uprooting Addiction — documentary

Ursula von Rydingsvard: Into Her Own — documentary

Val — documentary

Valley Girl (2020) — musical

The Vanished (2020) (formerly titled Hour of Lead)— drama

Vanquish (2021) — action

The Vast of Night — sci-fi/drama

Venom: Let There Be Carnage — action

The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee — comedy

The Vigil (2021) — horror

The Village in the Woods — horror

Viral: Antisemitism in Four Mutations — documentary

The Virtuoso (2021) — drama

Vivarium — sci-fi/drama

Voyagers — sci-fi/drama

Waiting for the Barbarians — drama

Wander Darkly — drama

The War With Grandpa — comedy

Watson — documentary

The Way Back (2020) — drama

We Are Freestyle Love Supreme — documentary

We Are Little Zombies — comedy/drama

We Are Many — documentary

We Are the Radical Monarchs — documentary

Weathering With You — animation

We Broke Up — comedy

Welcome to Chechnya — documentary

We Need to Do Something — horror

Werewolves Within — horror/comedy

What’s My Name: Muhammad Ali — documentary

What We Found — drama

What Will Become of Us — documentary

When the Streetlights Go On — drama

The Whistlers — drama

A White, White Day — drama

Widow of Silence — drama

Wig — documentary

Wild Indian — drama

Wild Mountain Thyme — drama

The Windermere Children — drama

Wine Crush (Vas-y Coupe!) (formerly titled Vas-y Coupe!) — documentary

Witch Hunt (2021) — horror

Wojnarowicz — documentary

The Wolf House — animation

The Wolf of Snow Hollow — horror

A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem — documentary

Women (2021) — horror

Wonder Woman 1984 — action

Woodstock: Three Days That Defined a Generation — documentary

Words on Bathroom Walls — drama

Work It — comedy/drama

The World to Come — drama

Wrath of Man — action

The Wretched — horror

A Writer’s Odyssey — fantasy/action

The Wrong Missy — comedy

XY Chelsea — documentary

Yakuza Princess — action

Yellow Rose — drama

You Cannot Kill David Arquette — documentary

You Don’t Nomi — documentary

You Go to My Head — drama

You Should Have Left — horror

Yusuf Hawkins: Storm Over Brooklyn — documentary

Zack Snyder’s Justice League — action

Zappa — documentary

Zola — comedy/drama

Zombi Child — horror

Review: ‘Malignant’ (2021), starring Annabelle Wallis, Maddie Hasson, George Young, Michole Brianna White, Jacqueline McKenzie, Jake Abel and Ingrid Bisu

October 17, 2021

by Carla Hay

Annabelle Wallis in “Malignant” (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/Warner Bros. Pictures)

“Malignant” (2021)

Directed by James Wan

Culture Representation: Taking place in Seattle, the horror flick “Malignant” has a predominantly white cast of characters (with a few African Americans, Asians and Latinos) representing the working-class and middle-class.

Culture Clash: While recovering from an abusive marriage and a pregnancy miscarriage, a woman experiences nightmarish visions and a sinister force that seems to be targeting her for violence.

Culture Audience: “Malignant” will appeal primarily to people who are interested in slightly campy horror movies that are suspenseful and have intriguing twists and turns.

Annabelle Wallis and Maddie Hasson in “Malignant” (Photo by Matt Kennedy/Warner Bros. Pictures)

It’s always refreshing when a horror movie fully commits to an absolutely insane twist ending that viewers will either love or hate. “Malignant” doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it’s serious about bringing its own quirky spin to the horror cliché of a woman being menaced by an unknown entity. The movie also has sobering (and possibly triggering) portrayals of domestic violence and pregnancy miscarriage. By the end of the movie, “Malignant” reveals that the concept of a mind playing tricks on someone isn’t limited to just the movie’s protagonist.

Directed by James Wan and written by Akela Cooper, “Malignant” sometimes crosses the line into campy territory when depicting the inevitable murders that happen and frequent hysteria that results from these killings. Wan is a horror master who is best known in horror filmmaking for creating “The Conjuring” universe. It’s a movie franchise that’s straightforward about what’s behind the evil mayhem (it’s a cursed doll named Annabelle) that’s unleashed on the victims in “The Conjuring” and related movies. Wan also co-created with “Saw” horror movie franchise with Leigh Whannell. By contrast, the answers to the mystery in “Malignant” aren’t so transparent.

Annabelle Wallis was the star of 2014’s “Annabelle,” a dull and disappointing prequel to 2013’s “The Conjuring.” In “Annabelle,” which takes primarily in 1955, Wallis had a bland and somewhat forgettable role as a housewife who unwittingly brings home the Annabelle doll. In “Malignant,” Wallis has a much better showcase for her acting talent, in a role that is physically and emotionally more demanding. Wallis takes on the role with admirable and convincing gusto.

In “Malignant,” Wallis is Madison “Maddie” Mitchell, an abused wife who has suffered through several miscarriages. When viewers first see Maddie, she is about seven or eight months pregnant with a baby girl whom she has nicknamed Dumpling. Maddie is an aide at a hospital, where she has continued to work through this late stage in her pregnancy because she had her unemployed husband Derek Mitchell (played by Jake Abel) need the money.

Derek has a mean streak and a violent temper. When Maddie comes home from an exhausting day at work, it doesn’t take long for him to pick a fight with her. He berates her for having had previous miscarriages. Derek gets so angry that he punches Maddie in the abdomen very hard, and the force of the punch makes her hits her head against the wall.

Maddie starts bleeding in the back of the head. Like many abusers, Derek is apologetic about the harm that he caused and he offers to get Maddie some ice to treat her injury. Like many abuse victims, Maddie doesn’t call anyone for help or to report the abuse. She lockes herself in a room and sobs about her miserable life.

Later that night, Derek is viciously murdered while he’s sleeping on the living room sofa. Maddie was the only other person who was known to be home at the time, so she immedately falls under suspicion for the murder. She insists that a male intruder committed the murder, and she claims the intruder attacked her. However, Maddie’s description of the intruder is so vague (a black shadowy figure) that police officers investigating the case think that Maddie is lying.

It doesn’t take long for the investigation cops—George Young (played by Kekoa Shaw) and Regina Moss (played by Michole Brianna White)—to find out that Derek was abusing Maddie, thereby giving Maddie a motive to kill him. George is more compassionate to Maddie in the interrogations than Regina is, because George is more willing to give Maddie the benefit of the doubt, while Regina is more inclined to think that Maddie is guilty of Derek’s murder.

At various times in the story, Maddie is put under psychiatric evaluation. She has nightmares with visions of other murders that are exactly like murders that end up happening. Because she seems to know too much information, George and Regina have no choice but to put Maddie on the top of their list of possible suspects. One person who completely believes in Maddie’s innocence is her younger sister Sydney Lake (played by Maddie Hasson), who is Maddie’s only real source of support.

Maddie’s head injury mysteriously doesn’t heal. Throughout the story, Maddie notices that the back of her head is bleeding again. And coincidence or not, every time she notices this bleeding, something bad usually happens not long afterward. She also starts to act increasingly unhinged and starts babbling about having an imaginary friend.

The opening scene of “Malignant” indicates that there are dark secrets that will eventually be revealed. This first scene takes place at Simon Research Hospital in Seattle in 1993. Someone named Gabriel has been unleashing an attack on the hospital’s staff. This attack includes causing the electricity to go haywire.

Gabriel is eventually subdued. And under the orders of Dr. Florence Weaver (played by Jacqueline McKenzie), Gabriel is strapped to a chair. “You’ve been a bad, bad boy, Gabriel,” Dr. Weaver scolds him. When Gabriel threatens, “I will kill you all,” Dr. Weaver responds, “It’s time to cut out the cancer.” What Gabriel looks like is shown in this scene, but it won’t be described in this review. It’s enough to say that this scene goes a long way in explaining what’s revealed later in the movie.

“Malignant” is the type of gruesome horror movie that tries to inject some comedy in a tension-filled story. There’s a minor subplot about a young police constable named Winnie (played by Ingrid Bisu), who has a crush on her older co-worker George. Winnie’s eager-to-impress attitude with George is looked at with amusement or pity by jaded co-worker Regina. George keeps his relationship with Winnie strictly professional, but Winnie’s obvious crush on him leads to some comedically awkward moments.

For all of its mystery and suspense, “Malignant” is not without its flaws. There’s a kidnapping and attempted murder that happens to a Seattle Underground tour guide (played by Jean Louisa Kelly), who ends up in a coma in a hospital. However, the movie unrealistically has her listed as a Jane Doe, even though it wouldn’t be that hard for the cops to find out who she is, based on her job and the circumstances under which she was found. It’s a minor plot hole that doesn’t ruin the movie because her identity is eventually discovered.

The big plot twist/reveal at the end of the movie isn’t completely shocking, because there were some big clues along the way. However, it still feels a little to rushed in at the movie’s big climactic scene, without giving viewers enough time to absorb the magnitude of this reveal. That might have been the intention to give the plot twist/reveal a maximum shocking effect. However, the way that this reveal was filmed could have been slightly better.

All of the actors in the cast do perfectly fine jobs in their roles, with Wallis being the obvious standout, even though “Malignant” is not the type of movie that’s going to win awards. However, Wallis skillfully portrays a character whose words and actions make her harder to figure out over time. Viewers will start to wonder how much of Maddie’s visions are real and how much are pure insanity. It’s that mystery—rather than the typical horror movie violence that ensues—that will keep viewers of “Malignant” on edge, because what’s in someone’s mind can be scarier than some bloody murder scenes.

Warner Bros. Pictures released “Malignant” in U.S. cinemas and on HBO Max on September 10, 2021.

Review: ‘Halloween Kills,’ starring Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Will Patton, Thomas Mann and Anthony Michael Hall

October 16, 2021

by Carla Hay

Judy Greer, Jamie Lee Curtis and Andi Matichak in in “Halloween Kills” (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)

“Halloween Kills”

Directed by David Gordon Green

Culture Representation: Taking place in the fictional Haddonfield, Illinois, the horror flick “Halloween Kills” has a predominantly white cast of characters (with a few African Americans) representing the working-class and middle-class.

Culture Clash: Serial killer Michael Myers is on the loose again and will murder anyone who gets in his way.

Culture Audience: “Halloween Kills” will appeal primarily to people who are interested in watching horror movies that care more about creating bloody murder scenes than creating any suspense or an interesting story.

Michael Myers (also known as The Shape, pictured at left) in “Halloween Kills” (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)

“Halloween Kills” is an apt description for what this boring slog of a horror movie does to further destroy the already damaged “Halloween” franchise. It also commits the unforgivable sin of confining “Halloween” icon Laurie Strode to a hospital for most of the movie. Horror movie aficionados will find nothing scary about this cynical cesspool of lazy filmmaking, because “Halloween Kills” is just a series of gory murders thrown into an incoherent and flimsy plot.

The 2018 “Halloween” movie indicated that Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie Strode character (the most famous survivor of mask-wearing serial killer Michael Myers) would return to the franchise as an active hero doing battle against Michael Myers, who is also known as The Shape. The movie also introduced Laurie’s estranged daughter Karen (played by Judy Greer) and Karen’s daughter Allyson (played by Andi Matichak) into the mix, to make this hunt for Michael Myers a multi-generational family mission. At the end of the movie, Laurie and Karen had begun to mend their relationship, with Allyson being somewhat of a bridge between the two.

In “Halloween Kills,” which picks up right after the 2018 “Halloween” movie ended, any expectation that Laurie, Karen and Allyson would join forces is shattered. The three women spend most of the movie apart from each other. And when they are together, they often bicker with each other about who should or shouldn’t go after Michael Myers, who has returned to his hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois, to wreak more havoc on Halloween night. (“Halloween Kills” was actually filmed in North Carolina.) Meanwhile, men dominate in the planning of vigilante mob actions that play out in “Halloween Kills” in the most ludicrous ways.

David Gordon Green directed 2018’s “Halloween” and “Halloween Kills,” and he co-wrote both movies with Danny McBride. Jeff Fradley was the third co-writer of 2018’s “Halloween,” while Scott Teems was the third co-writer of “Halloween Kills.” It’s difficult to know if replacing Fradley with Teems is the reason why the quality of the “Halloween Kills” screenplay took a noticeable descent into moronic hell. The 2018 “Halloween” movie is by no means a classic horror flick, but it’s an exceedingly better film than the dreck of “Halloween Kills.” The director is chiefly responsible for how a movie turns out, so it’s disappointing that Green chose to coast off of the success of his “Halloween” movie and churn out such a formulaic and unimaginative dud with “Halloween Kills.”

Simply put: “Halloween Kills” wallows in the worst stereotypes of awful horror flicks. Characters go into a house alone to try and confront the extremely dangerous killer on the loose. When opportunities come to capture or kill the murderer once and for all, characters stand around talking to (or screaming at) the mute psycho killer Michael Myers, as if they think striking up a one-way conversation with him will suddenly turn him to a reasonable, law-abiding citizen. (In “Halloween Kills,” Michael Myers is portrayed by three actors: James Jude Courtney and Nick Castle in the 2018 scenes and Airon Armstrong in the 1978 scenes.)

And even though this serial killer is murdering people all over town, police officers and ambulances are mysteriously absent for most of the mayhem because almost all the imbecile characters in this movie usually don’t call 911. The nonsensical explanation in the movie is that the vigilante citizens think they can take Michael Myers on their own. Many of them think the Haddonfield police are incompetent. But that still doesn’t explain why the police aren’t showing up in force anyway.

And worst of all for a horror movie: There’s almost no suspense and nothing is truly terrifying. Gruesome? Yes. Scary? No. It’s very easy to predict who will die and who will survive in this movie. There’s also the predictable ending scene of someone who might or might not be dead. (It’s the most obvious way for a horror movie to set up a sequel.) The murders are done in such a monotonously routine way, it would be understandable for viewers to think that Michael Myers is sleepwalking. There is absolutely nothing creatively done in this movie when it comes to the plot, dialogue or action sequences.

“Halloween Kills” also squanders a compelling idea of reuniting many of the characters who survived the Michael Myers massacre that took place in the original 1978 “Halloween” movie. Several characters are introduced as having a meaningful connection to “Halloween” lore, but “Halloween Kills” won’t let viewers get to know these characters in a meaningful way. There are flashbacks in “Halloween Kills” that are ultimately a waste of time.

In one such flashback, which takes place in 1978 during Michael Myers’ first massacre in Haddonfield, viewers see a rookie cop in his 20s named Hawkins (played by Thomas Mann) and his older, more experienced partner Pete McCabe (played by Jim Cummings) on the scene. They are among the first cops to respond to this emergency. It’s enough to say that McCabe doesn’t make it out alive, but Hawkins does. And in 2018, Hawkins (played by Will Patton) is still a Haddonfield cop, and he’s been wounded in this latest Michael Myers massacre.

Laurie is also wounded, because Michael stabbed her in the abdomen, as shown in 2018’s “Halloween.” She’s first seen in “Halloween Kills” bleeding profusely and in agony in the back of a truck with Karen and Allyson, as the truck speeds to the nearest hospital. And it’s at this hospital that Laurie will stay for most of her screen time in “Halloween Kills.” She’s sidelined into being either being unconscious or, when she wakes up, being a cranky grandmother who thinks she knows best when it comes to who should go after Michael Myers.

And what a coincidence: A wounded Hawkins ends up being in the same hospital room as Laurie. There’s an almost laughable backstory put in “Halloween Kills” that Laurie and Hawkins had a flirtation with each other back in 1978. And so, in the midst of all the madness and mayhem with this latest Michael Myers killing spree, Laurie and Hawkins make goo-goo eyes at each other in their hospital beds, as they reminisce about their “could’ve been” near-miss romance. It’s an example of how off-the-rails this movie is in keeping Laurie mostly out of the action.

Besides Laurie and Hawkins, these are the other Haddonfield survivors from the original 1978 massacre who become targets of Michael Myers in the 2018 massacre:

  • Tommy Doyle (played by Anthony Michael Hall): In 1978, Laurie was babysitting Tommy and his sister on the Halloween night when Michael Myers went on his deadly rampage. Tommy’s sister became one of Michael Myers’ murder victims.
  • Lindsey Wallace (played by Kyle Richards): She was also a kid in 1978, and her babysitter was murdered by Michael Myers that night.
  • Marion Chambers (played by Nancy Stephens): She was the nurse of the late Dr. Loomis (played by Donald Pleasance), the psychiatrist who was treating Michael Myers when Michael escaped from the psychiatric institution on that fateful Halloween in 1978. (Stephens reprises her role that she had in 1978’s “Halloween” movie.)
  • Lonnie Elam (played by Robert Longstreet): When he was 9 or 10 years old, he had a near-miss encounter with Michael Myers on a sidewalk on Halloween night 1978. (Tristian Eggerling portrays Lonnie as a child in a flashback scene.)

“Halloween Kills” also has some other characters who encounter Michael Myers on Halloween night in 2018. Lonnie’s son Cameron Elam (played by Dylan Arnold) happens to be Allyson’s boyfriend. Cameron is also the person who finds a wounded Hawkins on the street. It’s one of the few times that someone in this movie has the common sense to call 911 for help. But that’s not what happens later in the movie when Lonnie, Cameron and Allyson foolishly decide to hunt down Michael Myers on their own.

Married couple Marcus (played by (played by Michael Smallwood) and Vanessa (played by Carmela McNeal), who are dressed up as a doctor and a nurse, meet Tommy at a local bar and quickly befriend him after he gets up on stage and talks about being a Michael Myers survivor. And there’s a gay couple named Big John (played by Scott MacArthur) and Little John (played by Michael McDonald), who work together in real estate. Big John and Little John happen to live in the house that Michael Myers used to live in before Michael was sent to a psychiatric institution in 1963 for killing his 17-year-old sister Judith when he was 6 years old. What are the odds that Michael will go back to his childhood home when Big John and Little John are there?

Michael Myers was supposed to be in his 20s in 1978, which means that he’s getting too old to have the type of superhuman strength that he has in these “Halloween” movies. He’s also been “killed” in several ways in various “Halloween” movies, but he still keeps coming back. All of that is explained in “Halloween Kills” when Laurie gives an absurdly bad monologue about how she’s come to the conclusion that Michael Myers is not human and he feeds off of people’s fear of him.

The “mob justice” aspect of “Halloween Kills” is idiotic and badly mishandled. Expect to see Tommy shout, “Evil dies tonight!” multiple times, as it becomes a rallying cry for the vigilante crowd. Just by coincidence, two psychiatric patients have escaped that night from a psychiatric institution that held Michael Myers. It’s a plot contrivance that’s set up for a silly “mistaken identity” subplot.

Even though the people of Haddonfield should know by now what Michael Myers’ height and general physical build should be (his body type hasn’t changed since 1978), the crazed vigilantes go after one of these escapees who’s considerably shorter and stockier than Michael Myers. Apparently, for this mob, any old psychiatric hospital escapee will do.

Karen is the only one with an iota of common sense to notice that this escapee doesn’t have Michael Myers’ physical characteristics. As the practical-minded Karen, Greer gives the best performance of this movie’s cast members. However, that’s not saying much because everyone’s acting in “Halloween Kills” is mediocre overall.

Oddly, there’s a lone elderly cop in uniform who gets swept up in the vigilante mob. His allegiances are never really clear. One minute, he seems to want to try to stop the mob madness. The next minute, he seems to be going along with the crowd. He doesn’t ask for backup from his fellow police officers. The only thing that’s clear is that he’s a terrible cop who should be fired and can kiss that pension goodbye.

There are many plot holes in “Halloween” that the filmmakers want to cover up with some cringeworthy dialogue and bloody action sequences. “Halloween Kills” has so much arguing and melodrama in a hospital, viewers will be wondering: “Is this a horror movie or a soap opera?” At one point, Laurie rips out her medical tubes and injects herself in the rear end with a painkiller. If you waited your whole life to see Laurie Strode give herself a butt injection, then “Halloween Kills” is the movie for you.

During one of her hospital rants, Laurie says to Karen about why Michael Myers is still on the loose and what Laurie wants to do about it: “The system failed … Let him come for me! Let him take my head as I take his! … You and Allyson shouldn’t have to keep running because of the darkness I created.”

But wait a minute, Laurie. “Halloween Kills” doesn’t want you to take all the credit for Michael Myers going on a rampage. Hawkins thinks Michael Myers is on this killing spree because of Hawkins. He makes a guilt-ridden confession that doesn’t make any sense at all for why Hawkins would be the reason for Michael Myers’ serial killings. There’s a badly written flashback scene involving a cover-up that wouldn’t be plausible in the real world because of autopsy reports and how bullet trajectories would be investigated.

It’s not as if viewers should expect a terrible horror movie like “Halloween Kills” to be realistic. But the movie just doesn’t offer a horrifying mystery, engaging new characters, or even twist-filled “hunt for the killer” chase scenes. It’s all so predictable, hollow and generic. “Halloween Kills” puts too much emphasis on a mindless and forgettable mob of people while sidelining Laurie Strode, the most memorable and iconic hero of the “Halloween” franchise. That’s the real injustice in “Halloween Kills.”

Universal Pictures released “Halloween Kills” in U.S. cinemas and on Peacock on October 15, 2021.

2021 Horror Movie Hub

There’s no doubt about it: Horror movies are hot right now. Here’s a list of horror flicks with U.S. releases in 2021. They’re all here, whether they are movies with theatrical releases, films that went directly to video, or movies that are only available on streaming services or TV networks. (Movies that were originally released before 2021 and were re-released in 2021 are not included.) Movies that were reviewed on Culture Mix get a featured spotlight, while all the rest of the movies are listed below.

For the purposes of this list, “horror movies” are defined as movies that are intended to be scary, which are often different from crime movies. For example, “Halloween” is a horror movie. “Scarface” is not. As a helpful guide, the movies on this list are identified by the subgenres in horror.

NOTE: This list is only for movies released in the United States. The availability of a movie on this list might vary outside the U.S.

Horror Movies of 2021: Culture Mix Reviews

The 8th Night (Photo courtesy of Netflix)
The Arbors (Photo courtesy of Gravitas Ventures)
Army of the Dead (Photo by Clay Enos/Netflix)
Blood Conscious (Photo courtesy of Dark Sky Films)
Bloody Hell (Photo courtesy of Entertainment Squad/The Horror Collective)
Cactus Jack (Photo courtesy of Cactus Jack Film LLC)
Candyman (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)
Censor (Photo by Maria Lax/Magnet Releasing)
The Columnist (Photo courtesy of Film Movement)
The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It (Photo by Ben Rothstein/Warner Bros. Pictures)
Demonic (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)
The Devil Below (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
The Djinn (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)
Don’t Breathe 2 (Photo by Sergej Radovic/Screen Gems)
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions (Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures)
The Evil Next Door (Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing)
Fear of Rain (Photo courtesy of Lionsgate)
The Forever Purge (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)
Funhouse (Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing)
Gaia (Photo by Jorrie van der Wal/Decal)
Ghostbusters: Afterlife (Photo by Kimberley French/Columbia Pictures)
The Green Knight (Photo courtesy of A24)
Halloween Kills (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)
Held (Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing)
The House Next Door: Meet the Blacks 2 (Photo courtesy of Lionsgate)
In the Earth (Photo courtesy of Neon)
Jakob’s Wife (Photo courtesy of RLJE Films and Shudder)
Killer Among Us (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
Lamb (Photo courtesy of A24 Films)
Malignant (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/Warner Bros. Pictures)
The Night (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)
The Night House (Photo courtesy of Searchlight Pictures)
Old (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)
Paranormal Prison (Photo courtesy of Gravitas Ventures)
Phobias (Photo by Vertical Entertainment)
A Quiet Place Part II (Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures)
Saint Maud (Photo courtesy of A24)
School’s Out Forever (Photo courtesy of Central City Media)
Separation (Photo by Blair Todd/Open Road Films/Briarcliff Entertainment)
The Seventh Day (Photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment)
The Sinners (Photo courtesy of Brainstorm Media)
Spiral (Photo by Brooke Palmer/Lionsgate)
The Stylist (Photo courtesy of Method Media/Sixx Tape Productions)
Ted Bundy: American Boogeyman (Photo courtesy of Dark Star Pictures/Voltage Pictures)
Titane (Photo by Carole Bethuel/Neon)
Too Late (Photo courtesy of Gravitas Ventures)
The Unholy (Photo courtesy of Screen Gems)
The Vigil (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)
The Village in the Woods (Photo courtesy of 4Digital Media)
We Need to Do Something (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)
Werewolves Within (Photo by Sabrina Lantos/IFC Films)
Witch Hunt (Photo courtesy of Momentum Pictures)
Women (Photo courtesy of Gravitas Ventures)

Complete List of Horror Movies Released in 2021

  • sci-fi horror = futuristic science or outer-space aliens
  • slasher horror = killer humans or wild animals
  • supernatural horror  = evil spirits
  • vampire horror = killer vampires
  • zombie horror = killer zombies

6:45 — sci-fi horror

The 8th Night — supernatural horror

Aileen Wuornos: American Boogeywoman — slasher horror

All My Friends Hate Me — slasher horror

The Amusement Park — slasher horror

Antlers — supernatural horror

The Arbors — sci-fi horror

Army of the Dead (2021) — zombie horror

Babysitter Must Die — slasher horror

Bad Candy — supernatural horror

The Banishing — supernatural horror

A Banquet — supernatural horror

Baphomet — supernatural horror

The Battle of Ramree Island — slasher horror

Behemoth — sci-fi horror

Benny Loves You — supernatural horror

Beyond Paranormal — sci-fi horror

Bingo Hell — slasher horror

Black Friday (2021) — sci-fi horror

Black as Night — vampire horror

Bleed With Me — slasher horror

Blood Conscious — slasher horror

Bloody Hell — slasher horror

Bloodthirsty — slasher horror

The Boy Behind the Door — supernatural horror

Boys From County Hell — vampire horror

Cactus Jack — slasher horror

Candyman (2021) — supernatural horror

Castle Freak — supernatural horror

Caveat — slasher horror

Censor (2021) — slasher horror

Chompy & the Girls — slasher horror

A Classic Horror Story — supernatural horror

The Columnist — slasher horror

Coming Home in the Dark — slasher horror

The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It — supernatural horror

Crack House of the Dead — zombie horror

Dachra — supernatural horror

Dark Spell — supernatural horror

Dark Stories — supernatural horror

Dead & Beautiful — vampire horror

Deadhouse Dark — anthology horror

The Dead of Night (2021) — supernatural horror

Death Drop Gorgeous — slasher horror

Death Ranch — slasher horror

Dementer — slasher horror

Dementia Part II — supernatural horror

Demonic (2021) — supernatural horror

Detention (2021) — supernatural horror

The Devil Below (formerly titled Shookum Hills) — supernatural horror

The Devil’s Child — supernatural horror

The Djinn — supernatural horror

Don’t Breathe 2 — slasher horror

Dreamcatcher (2021) — slasher horror

Escape Room: Tournament of Champions — slasher horror

Escape the Undertaker — slasher horror

The Evil Next Door — supernatural horror

Fear of Rain — slasher horror

Fear Street Part 1: 1994 — supernatural horror

Fear Street Part 2: 1978 — supernatural horror

Fear Street Part 3: 1666 — supernatural horror

The Feast (2021) — supernatural horror

The Forever Purge — slasher horror

Fried Barry — sci-fi horror

For the Sake of Vicious — slasher horror

Funhouse (2021) — slasher horror

Funny Face — slasher horror

Gaia — sci-fi horror

Getaway — slasher horror

Ghostbusters: Afterlife — supernatural horror

Ghost Lab — supernatural horror

A Ghost Waits — supernatural horror

Girl Next — slasher horror

The Girl Who Got Away — slasher horror

The Green Knight — supernatural horror

Grizzly II: Revenge — slasher horror

Hail to the Deadites — documentary horror

Halloween Kills — slasher horror

The Heiress (2021) — supernatural horror

Held — slasher horror

Hell Trip — supernatural horror

Honeydew — slasher horror

Horror Noir — documentary horror

The House Next Door: Meet the Blacks 2 — vampire horror

Hum (2021) — supernatural horror

Hunted (2021) — slasher horror

Implanted (2021) — sci-fi horror

Initiation (2021) — slasher horror

In Search of Darkness: Part II — documentary horror

In the Earth — sci-fi horror

Isolation — anthology horror

Jakob’s Wife — vampire horror

Kandisha — supernatural horror

Killer Among Us — slasher horror

Lair — supernatural horror

Lamb (2021) — supernatural horror

Lantern’s Lane — slasher horror

Last Night in Soho — sci-fi horror

Let Us In — sci-fi horror

The Mad Hatter — supernatural horror

Madres (2021) — supernatural horror

Making Monsters — supernatural horror

Malignant (2021) — supernatural horror

The Manor (2021) — supernatural horror

The Manson Brothers Midnight Zombie Massacre — slasher horror

Marionette (2021) — supernatural horror

Martyrs Lane — supernatural horror

Masquerade (2021) — slasher horror

Meander — sci-fi horror

The Medium (2021) — supernatural horror

The Midwife (2021) — supernatural horror

Mosquito State — slasher horror

My Heart Can’t Beat Unless You Tell It To — slasher horror

A Nightmare Wakes — supernatural horror

Necropath — slasher horror

The Night (2021) — supernatural horror

Night at the Eagle Inn — supernatural horror

Night Drive — slasher horror

The Night House — supernatural horror

No One Gets Out Alive — slasher horror

Old — sci-fi horror

Paranormal Prison — supernatural horror

P.G.: Psycho Goreman — supernatural horror

Phobias (2021) — anthology horror

The Power (2021) — supernatural horror

The Queen of Black Magic — supernatural horror

Queen of Spades — supernatural horror

A Quiet Place Part II — sci-fi horror

The Reckoning (2021) — supernatural horror

Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City — zombie horror

The Resort (2021) — supernatural horror

The Retreat (2021) — slasher horror

Roh — supernatural horror

Saint Maud — slasher horror

The Scary of Sixty-First  — slasher horror

School’s Out Forever — sci-fi horror

Seance (2021) — supernatural horror

The Secret of Sinchanee — supernatural horror

Separation (2021) — supernatural horror

The Seventh Day (2021) — supernatural horror

Shelter in Place — supernatural horror

The Sinners (2021) (formerly titled The Color Rose) — slasher horror

Skull: The Mask — supernatural horror

Slaxx — supernatural horror

Son (2021) — supernatural horror

Sound of Violence — supernatural horror

The Spine of Night — supernatural horror

Spiral (2021) — slasher horror

Spoor — supernatural horror

The Stairs — supernatural horror

Stay Out of the F**king Attic — supernatural horror

The Strange House — supernatural horror

The Stylist — slasher horror

Superdeep — sci-fi horror

Superhost — supernatural horror

The Swarm — sci-fi horror

Sweet River — supernatural horror

Ted Bundy: American Boogeyman — slasher horror

Teddy (2021) — slasher horror

There’s Someone Inside Your House — slasher horror

Things Seen and Heard — supernatural horror

Till Death — slasher horror

Titane — slasher horror

The Toll — supernatural horror

Too Late (2021) — slasher horror

Unearth — supernatural horror

The Unhealer — supernatural horror

The Unholy (2021) — supernatural horror

An Unquiet Grave — slasher horror

Untitled Horror Movie — supernatural horror

Val — supernatural horror

V/H/S/94 — anthology horror

Vicious Fun — slasher horror

The Vigil (2021) — supernatural horror

The Village in the Woods — supernatural horror

Violation (2021) — slasher horror

We Need to Do Something — supernatural horror

We’re All Going to the World’s Fair — supernatural horror

Werewolves Within — slasher horror

Whitetail — supernatural horror

The Widow (2021) — supernatural horror

Willy’s Wonderland — slasher horror

Witch Hunt (2021) — supernatural horror

Women (2021) — slasher horror

Wrong Turn (2021) — slasher horror

Zombie Bro — zombie horror

True Crime Entertainment: What’s New This Week

The following content is generally available worldwide, except where otherwise noted. All TV shows listed are for networks and streaming services based in the United States. All movies listed are those released in U.S. cinemas. This schedule is for content and events premiering this week and does not include content that has already been made available.

Monday, October 11 – Sunday, October 17

TV/Streaming Services

All times listed are Eastern Time/Pacific Time, unless otherwise noted.

Sundance TV’s true crime series “Indefensiblepremieres on Thursday, October 14 at 11 p.m. ET/PT.

Monday, October 11

“The Detective Diaries”
“The Phantom of La Palma” (Episode 103)
Monday, October 11, 9 p.m., Investigation Discovery

“I Was a Teenage Felon”
“Ecstacy Kingpin” (Episode 204)
Monday, October 11, 10 p.m., Vice

Tuesday, October 12

“The Cleveland Kidnappings” (TV special)
Tuesday, October 12, 3 a.m. ET/12 a.m. PT, Discovery+

“Life, Death and Money: Leona Helmsley” (TV Special)
Tuesday, October 12, 10 p.m., Reelz

“Signs of a Psychopath”
“I’m Just a Sick Monster” (Episode 306)
Tuesday, October 12, 10 p.m., Investigation Discovery

Wednesday, October 13

“Operation Hyacinth” (Feature Film)
Wednesday, October 13, 3 a.m. ET/12 a.m. PT, Discovery+

“Gabby Petito: ID Special Report”
Wednesday, October 13, 9 p.m., Investigation Discovery

“After the Storm”  
Wednesday, October 13, 8 p.m., Oxygen

“Court Cam”
Episode 417
Wednesday, October 13, 9 p.m., A&E

“Court Cam”
Episode 418
Wednesday, October 13, 9:30 p.m., A&E

“Killer Cases”
“The New Year’s Eve Murder” (Episode 204)
Wednesday, October 13, 10 p.m., A&E

“In Pursuit With John Walsh”
“Stolen Futures” (Episode 309)
Wednesday, October 13, 10 p.m., Investigation Discovery

Thursday, October 14

“The Missing” (Documentary Film)
Thursday, October 14, 3 a.m. ET/12 a.m. PT, HBO Max

“A Time to Kill”
“The Business of Murder” (Episode 410)
Thursday, October 14, 9 p.m., Investigation Discovery

“How Men Get Off” (Episode 101) **Series Premiere**
Thursday, October 14, 11 p.m., Sundance 

Friday, October 15

TBA (Episode 4402)
Friday, October 15, 9 p.m., ABC

Friday, October 15, 9 p.m., NBC

Saturday, October 16

“Snapped: Behind Bars”
“Taylor Marks”
Saturday, October 16, 8 p.m., Oxygen

“Stalked: Followed by Fear”
“True Nature” (Episode 110) **Season Finale**
Saturday, October 16, 9 p.m., Investigation Discovery

“48 Hours”
Saturday, October 16, 10 p.m., CBS

“True Nightmare: Tales of Terror”
“The Doll Collector” (Episode 105)
Saturday, October 16, 10 p.m., Investigation Discovery

Sunday, October 17

“The Men Who Stole the World Cup” (TV Special)
Sunday, October 17, 3 a.m. ET/12 a.m. PT, Discovery+

“Mary Ann Hughes”
Sunday, October 17, 6 p.m., Oxygen

“Mark of a Killer”
“The Interstate Killer” (Episode 306)
Sunday, October 17, 7 p.m., Oxygen

“Vengeance: Killer Families”
“Little White Lies” (Episode 506) 
Sunday, October 17, 9 p.m., HLN

“Evil Lives Here”
“He Fed Them to Gators” (Episode 1013) 
Sunday, October 17, 9 p.m., Investigation Discovery

“Murder Nation”
“Sins at the Synagogue” (Episode 202) 
Sunday, October 17, 10 p.m., HLN

“On the Case With Paula Zahn”
“Web of Torment” (Episode 2310) 
Sunday, October 17, 10 p.m., Investigation Discovery

Movie Theaters and Home Video

No new true crime movies in theaters or home video this week.


No new true crime podcast series premiering this week.


Events listed here are not considered endorsements by this website. All ticket buyers with questions or concerns about the event should contact the event promoter or ticket seller directly.

All start times listed are local time, unless otherwise noted.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, many in-person events that would normally be in-person are now being held as virtual/online events.

No new true crime events this week.

Bobby Flay exits Food Network after failing to get contract renewal

October 7, 2021

by Katy Kitsch

Bobby Flay (Photo courtesy of Food Network)

After 27 years of being one of Food Network’s most famous stars, celebrity chef Bobby Flay is parting ways with Food Network when his contact expires at the end of 2021. According to Variety, Flay and Food Network could not come to an agreement on his contract renewal. Food Network then decided not to renew Flaw’s contract. In other words, Flay probably asked for a salary raise that Food Network was not willing to pay. Food Network and Flay have not yet publicly commented on his departure. This article will be updated when any official statements are made.

Food Network is owned by Discovery Communcations, which also owns the Cooking Channel, TLC, Discovery, Discovery+, Discovery Family, Animal Planet, OWN, Investigation Discovery, HGTV, Magnolia Network, DIY, Travel Channel, Science Channel and Motortrend, among other media companies. Discovery Communications and WarnerMedia are merging into a new company called Warner Bros. Discovery, in a deal that is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022. WarnerMedia includes Warner Bros. Pictures, HBO, HBO Max, TNT, TBS, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network/Adult Swim and DC Comics.

It’s unlikely that Flay’s exit from Food Network will result in the end of his on-screen career. Don’t be surprised if he ends up making a deal with a streaming service, because streaming services have overall been paying higher amounts for talent than what basic cable networks are paying. Netflix, Hulu and HBO Max have all launched food-centric TV series that are giving competition to Food Network, which has traditionally dominated in the TV space of food-oriented programs.

Flay has starred in several Food Network shows, most notably “Iron Chef,” “Beat Bobby Flay” and “The Next Food Network Star.” In addition, he is a restaurateur and an author.

2020 BET Hip-Hop Awards: Cardi B, Megan The Stallion are the top winners

October 5, 2021

Tyler, the Creator at the 2021 BET Hip Hop Awards at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center in Atlanta on October 1, 2021 (Photo by Leon Bennett/2021 BET Hip Hop Awards/Getty Images)

The following is a press release from BET:

The 2021 BET Hip Hop Awards brought the hottest names in Hip Hop back to Atlanta, for the annual taping. Comedy supergroup 85 South (Karlous Miller, DC Young Fly, and Chico Bean) hosted this year’s awards from The Cobb Energy Centre which premiered on Tuesday, October 5 on BET, BET Her, MTV2 and VH1. Watch an encore airing of the award show Tuesday, October 7 at 9 PM ET/PT on BET. Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion ruled the night by jointly snagging three wins each including Song of the Year, Best Hip Hop Video and Best Collaboration for their smash hit “WAP.” [Editor’s note: Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion did not attend the ceremony.] Tyler, The Creator took home two wins for Hip Hop Album of the Year and Best Live Performer in addition to his Rock the Bells Cultural Influence Award  presented by LL Cool J.  Jay Z scored double wins in the Sweet 16: Best Featured Verse and Impact Track [cagtegories] for his Nipsey Hussle collaboration “What It Feels Like.” Newcomer Yung Bleu was crowned Best New Hip Hop Artist while rap sensation Saweetie took home Hustler of the Year. Music icon Missy Elliott was voted Video Director of the Year and Lyricist of the Year went to J. Cole. UK rapper Little Simz took home the Best International Flow award. 

Young Thug kicked off the night with an explosive performance of “Tick Tock” followed by Gunna with “Too Easy” before coming together with their hit collaboration “Ski.” Hot new rapper Bia performed her smash single “Whole Lotta Money,” then brought out Atlanta icon Lil Jon for “Bia Bia” to close it out. Baby Keem made his award show debut with “Family Ties.” Hip Hop sensation Latto brought the house down with a sparkling, high energy performance of “SoufSide” and new song “Big Energy” while Tobe Nwigwe made it a family affair with Fat and Nell on their song “Fye Fye.” Isaiah Rashad performed alongside Doechii and Kal Banx for “Wat U Sed” before ending the set with his solo single “From the Garden.” The hotly anticipated cyphers were hosted by DJ Hed and featured a bevy of emcees dropping hot sixteens including Grip, D Smoke, Smino, Tierra Whack, Rico Nasty, Sleepy Hallow, Erica Banks, Fivio Foreign, Toosii, Lakeyah, Kidd Kenn and Symba. Presenters for the evening included a trio of Hip Hop powerhouses Trina, Remy Ma, and Rapsody. “I Am Hip Hop Award” recipient Nelly closed out the show with a performance of his greatest hits including “Country Grammar,” “Hot In Herre,” “Air Force Ones,” “Dilemma,” “Grillz” with an appearance by Paul Wall and more.  

The following is the complete list of nominees and winners of the 2021 BET Hip Hop Awards:



A GANGSTA’S PAIN                                    MONEYBAGG YO


CULTURE III                                                MIGOS

GOOD NEWS                                               MEGAN THEE STALLION

KHALED KHALED                                       DJ KHALED

SAVAGE MODE II                                       21 SAVAGE & METRO BOOMIN

THE OFF-SEASON                                       J. COLE


BACK IN BLOOD                                          PRODUCED BY YC (POOH SHIESTY FEAT. LIL DURK)

LATE AT NIGHT                                          PRODUCED BY MUSTARD (RODDY RICCH)


UP                                                                   PRODUCED BY YUNG DZA, SEAN ISLAND, DJ SWANQO (CARDI B)

WAP                                                               PRODUCED BY AYO & KEYZ (CARDI B FEAT. MEGAN THEE STALLION)*       










CARDI B                                                                                     UP

CARDI B FEAT. MEGAN THEE STALLION                          WAP*

CHRIS BROWN & YOUNG THUG                                         GO CRAZY

DRAKE FEAT. LIL DURK                                                        LAUGH NOW CRY LATER

LIL NAS X                                                                                  MONTERO (CALL ME BY YOUR NAME)

SAWEETIE FEAT. DOJA CAT                                                 BEST FRIEND










BIA FEAT. NICKI MINAJ                                                         WHOLE LOTTA MONEY (REMIX)

CARDI B FEAT. MEGAN THEE STALLION                           WAP*


DRAKE FEAT. LIL DURK                                                         LAUGH NOW CRY LATER

POOH SHIESTY FEAT. LIL DURK                                          BACK IN BLOOD






































































CARDI B                                                        TYPE SHIT (MIGOS FEAT. CARDI B)

DRAKE                                                          HAVIN’ OUR WAY (MIGOS FEAT. DRAKE)

JAY-Z                                                            WHAT IT FEELS LIKE (NIPSEY HUSSLE FEAT. JAY-Z)*

LIL DURK                                                      BACK IN BLOOD (POOH SHIESTY FT. LIL DURK)


RODDY RICCH                                             LEMONADE (REMIX) (INTERNET MONEY FEAT. DON TOLIVER & RODDY RICCH)


BLACK THOUGHT                                       THOUGHT VS EVERYBODY

LIL NAS X                                                      MONTERO (CALL ME BY YOUR NAME)

LIL BABY & KIRK FRANKLIN                   WE WIN



RAPSODY                                                     12 PROBLEMS

Relive the 2021 BET Hip Hop Awards digital red carpet livestream powered by Bulldog DM, at

For more information about the BET Hip Hop Awards, including the digital red carpet livestream powered by Bulldog DM, the latest news and updates, visit and follow the conversation @BETAwards 

Connie Orlando, EVP Specials, Music Programming & Music Strategy will oversee the annual show, with Jamal Noisette, VP Specials, Music Programming & Music Strategy serving as Co-Executive Producer for BET. Jesse Collins, CEO of Jesse Collins Entertainment, to serve as Executive Producer of the 2021 BET Hip Hop Awards along with Jesse Collins Entertainment’s Jeannae Rouzan–Clay and Dionne Harmon.

2021 New York Comic Con: What to expect at this year’s event


Antony Starr and Erin Moriarty in “The Boys” (Courtesy of Amazon Prime Video)

October 4, 2021

by Carla Hay

The 16th annual New York Comic Con takes place October 7 to October 10, 2021, in New York City. For the first time, New York Comic Con will be a hybrid event, where people can attend in person or virtually. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, New York Comic Con was cancelled as an in-person event in 2020 and instead presented as a scaled-down virtual-only event. Before the pandemic, New York Comic Con attracted about 250,000 people per year since 2017, according to ReedPOP, the company that produces the event. The first New York Comic Con took place in 2006.

In 2021, New York Comic Con’s main hub remains the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, New York Comic Con in 2021 has less activities, panels and locations than in previous years. For example, in 2019, New York Comic Con took place at several other locations in New York City, including Hammerstein Ballroom, the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, the New York Public Library, the Way Station (in Brooklyn) and AMC 34th Street. Anime Fest (an offshoot of Anime Expo that was presented in conjunction with New York Comic Con in 2018 and 2019) will not take place at New York Comic Con in 2021.

The COVID-19 pandemic has also resulted in new safety requirements for New York Comic Con. All attendees ages 12 and up must show proof of vaccination. Attendees younger than age 12 must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated guardian and provide proof of either a negative rapid antigen COVID-19 test taken within six hours of entry to each day of the event,  or a negative lab PCR COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of entry of each day of the event.

Checkpoints have been set up at or near the Javits Center for attendees to obtain wristbands indicating that people have shown proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. No one can be admitted into New York Comic Con without these wristbands. The checkpoint locations and open hours can be found here. All attendees must wear a face covering at all times while inside a New York Comic Con building, except when eating or drinking.

TV shows continue to dominate the most high-profile panels and activities. New York Comic Con in 2021 has the following TV shows with in-person panel showcases: Amazon Prime Video’s  superhero series “The Boys” on October 8; USA Network’s and Syfy’s horror series”Chucky” on October 8; Starz’s fantasy drama series “Outlander” on October 9; Paramount+’s sci-fi series “Star Trek: Discovery” on October 9;  FX’s sci-fi series “Y: The Last Man” on October 9; and FX’s vampire horror comedy series “What We Do in the Shadows” on October 10.

There are very few feature films that have panels at New York Comic Con this year. The movie panel that is expected to get the biggest crowd is Columbia Pictures’ “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” on October 8, featuring in-person appearances by director Jason Reitman, producer Ivan Reitman (who directed the first two “Ghostbusters” movies) and members of the “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” cast. Amazon Prime Video’s 2021 installment of its “Welcome to the Blumhouse” movie anthology horor series has a virtual-only panel on October 7. Funimation will have two in-person movie panels featuring the English-language voice cast members: “My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission” on October 8 and “Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train” on October 10.

In addition, New York Comic Con will have one-on-one Q&As that each spotlight a different actor: William Shatner (“Star Trek”) on October 7; George Takei (“Star Trek”) on October 8; and David Harbour (“Stranger Things,” “Black Widow”) on October 9. Meanwhile, in a virtual-only, pre-recorded Q&A on October 8, “Game of Thrones” alum Emilia Clarke discusses her comic book writing debut, “M.O.M.: Mother of Madness.”

Broadway stars are represented on several panels. “The Big Broadway Nerd Panel” will feature panelists such as Anthony Rapp (“Rent”) and James M. Iglehart (“Aladdin”) on October 8. Other Broadway-related panels inlcude “The Broadway Bard Party” on October 9; “E-Ticket to Broadway” Podcast LIVE at Comic Con!” on October 9; “#BroadwayToHollywood: A New Age of Musicals” on October 10; and “Broadway’s A.J. Holmes: Creating One-Man Musical Yeah, But Not Right Now” on October 10.

The 2021 Harvey Awards Hall of Fame ceremony will be livestreamed during New York Comic Con on October  8. The recipients are manga artist Rumiko Takahashi (“Urusei Yatsura,” “Inuyasha”), horror illustrator Bernie Wrightson (“Swamp Thing”), painter and cover artist Jeffrey Catherine Jones, award-winning comic book artist Barry Windsor-Smith (“Conan the Barbarian,” “Weapon X”), and Michael Kaluta (“The Shadow,” “Starstruck”).

And, of course, there will be plenty of panels, exhibits and previews for comic books, video games, fantasy novels and other pop-culture attractions. It wouldn’t be a Comic Con without cosplaying and merchandise sales. The Cosplay Central area returns in a new location: on Level 1 in Room 1A02 (right across from Artist Alley) at the Javits Center. While at Cosplay Central, cosplayers can mingle, pose for photos, use the dressing rooms and attend panel discussions. New York Comic Con also has an enormous amount of merchandise for sale for numerous types of entertainment.


Several stars from movies and TV shows will have individual autograph sessions and/or photo opportunities with fans, for a fee. All celebrities are offering autographs and photos, unless otherwise noted. Prices will vary, according to the celebrity. Participants include:

  • John Cena (“The Suicide Squad,” “Peacemaker,” “F9”) on October 9.
  • Wes Chatham (“The Expanse”) on October 8  and October 9.
  • Hayden Christensen (“Star Wars: Attack of the Clones,” “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith”) on October 9 and October 10.
  • Chace Crawford (“The Boys”) on October 8 and October 9.
  • Karen Fukahara (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • David Harbour (“Stranger Things,” “Black Widow”) on October 9 and October 10.
  • Mary McDonnell (“Battlestar Galactica”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9.
  • Erin Moriarty (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • Kate Mulgrew (“Star Trek: Voyager,” “Star Trek: Prodigy”) on October 9.
  • Edward James Olmos (“Battlestar Galactica”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9.
  • Jack Quaid (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • William Shatner (“Star Trek”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9. (Autographs only.)
  • Jurnee Smollett (“Lovecraft Country,” “Birds of Prey”) on October 9.
  • Antony Starr (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • Steven Strait (“The Expanse”) on October 8 and October 9.
  • George Takei (“Star Trek”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9.
  • Janet Varney (“The Legend of Korra”) on October 8.


(All panel descriptions are courtesy of New York Comic Con.)

Virtual = Panelists will not appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

In Person = Panelists will appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

“Welcome to Earth”

October 7, 2021, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

See the planet as you’ve never witnessed it before with “Welcome to Earth,” the new, awe-inspiring Disney+ original series from National Geographic and starring Will Smith. Meet the Explorers that guide Will through an intimate journey as he travels to the ends of the Earth to observe the strangest, most unusual, and dangerous spectacles the planet has to offer. Learn directly from the Explorers what it takes to unlock some of nature’s most well kept secrets.

“Among the Stars

October 7, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

“Among the Stars” is a six-part Disney+ original series with fly-on-the-wall access into the world of NASA. With cameras stationed on both Earth and the International Space Station, the series follows NASA astronaut Captain Chris Cassidy for one last mission to repair the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) which aims to reveal the origins of the universe. Hear directly from the Astronauts and scientists who take on space missions and the challenges they face every day!

“The World According to Jeff Goldblum”

October 7, 2021, 2:15 PM – 3:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Jeff Goldblum is back, and he’s as curious as ever. For season two of the Disney+ original series, premiering on Disney+ Day November 12, Jeff uncovers the surprising secrets and passionate people behind a whole new host of topics, including magic and illusions. Jeff finds out just how magic has shaped the world we live in. Join Jeff along with legendary Magicians Penn & Teller as well as Street Magician Erik Blackwell to go behind the curtain of the mysterious world of MAGIC.

“Battlestar Galactica Retrospective”

October 7, 2021, 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM (In person)

Main Stage 1D Hall

The stars of the iconic show are coming to New York Comic Con! Join Edward James Olmos (Commander William Adama) and Mary McDonnell (President Laura Roslin) as they recount their journey aboard the Battlestar Galactica and answer questions from fans. Cylons and Humans are both welcome. So Say We All!

“Blade Runner: Black Lotus”

October 7, 2021, 6:45 – 7:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Explore the intricate approach to writing the dystopian future with the producers and directors of “Blade Runner: Black Lotus” with futurist, Maurice Conti, who shares his take on how the Blade Runner world stacks up against our future.

“The Legend of Vox Machina”

October 8, 2021, 11 AM – 12 PM (Virtual)

Main Stage 1D Hall

“The Legend of Vox Machina” is an animated fantasy-adventure series for adults that follows Vox Machina, a band of misfits with a fondness for boozing and brawling. In a desperate attempt to pay off their mounting bar tab, these unlikely heroes end up on a quest to save the realm of Exandria from dark magical forces. From a sinister necromancer to a powerful curse, the group confronts a variety of obstacles that not only test their skills, but also the strength of their bond. Join the entire cast of Critical Role as they discuss the process of adapting a role-playing game (RPG) campaign into a series for Amazon Prime Video, as well as share a special sneak peek of footage from the series. Please note, this panel is recommended for mature audiences and contains content not suitable for younger audiences.


October 8, 2021, 1:00 PM – 2:15 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Everyone’s favorite killer doll is coming to television! Join us for the world premiere of the first episode of the new series “Chucky,” ahead of its October 12 debut on USA and Syfy, followed by an exclusive conversation between creator and showrunner Don Mancini and franchise icon Jennifer Tilly (Tiffany Valentine). Get ready to play!

“I Know What You Did Last Summer”

October 8, 2021, 4:30 PM – 5:30 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

Written and executive produced by Sara Goodman, “I Know What You Did Last Summer” is based on Lois Duncan’s 1973 novel, which was also the basis of the iconic 1997 film. One year after the fatal car accident that haunted their graduation night, a group of teenagers find themselves bound together by a dark secret and stalked by a brutal killer. As they try to piece together who’s after them, they reveal the dark side of their seemingly perfect town—and themselves. Everyone is hiding something, and uncovering the wrong secret could be deadly. Join the series cast and creator as they discuss what fans can most look forward to when the series premieres Friday, October 15, exclusively on Amazon Prime Video. Please note, this panel is recommended for mature audiences and contains content not suitable for younger audiences.

“The Boys”

October 8, 2021, 4:45 PM – 5:45 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Join Karen Fukuhara, Erin Moriarty, Jack Quaid and Antony Starr as they look back on their favorite moments from the first two seasons of “The Boys.”


October 8, 2021, 5:15 PM – 6:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

“Evil” is a psychological mystery that examines the origins of evil along the dividing line between science and religion. The series focuses on a skeptical female psychologist who joins a priest-in-training and contractor as they investigate the Church’s backlog of unexplained mysteries, including supposed miracles, demonic possessions and hauntings. Their job is to assess if there’s a logical explanation or if something truly supernatural is at work. The second season brings evil closer to home. Kristen struggles with her darker nature, while David suffers temptation as he gets closer to his ordination. Meanwhile Ben is visited by night terrors that prey on his greatest fears. Please join series stars Katja Herbers, Mike Colter, Aasif Mandvi, Michael Emerson, Christine Lahti and Kurt Fuller, along with co-creators and executive producers Robert King and Michelle King for a panel discussion about the second season. “Evil” airs Sundays on Paramount+.


October 9, 2021, 11 AM – 12 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Travel through the stones of Craigh na Dun and go back in time with the cast and executive producers of “Outlander” as they take on New York Comic Con in support of the sixth season, premiering early 2022.

“All Elite Wrestlng”

October 9, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (In Person)

Main Stage 1D Hall

Join the stars of “All Elite Wrestling” as they take the stage at New York Comic Con once again for a ringside view of their wildly popular wrestling shows airing weekly on TNT. Panelists: Orange Cassidy, Tony Schiavone, Adam Cole, Thunder Rosa, Darby Allin.

“Star Trek: Discovery”

October 9, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

In advance of the season four return of “Star Trek: Discovery” on Paramount+, join cast members Sonequa Martin-Green, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, Wilson Cruz, David Ajala and Blu Del Barrio and executive producer Michelle Paradise as they tease the upcoming season of the hit series, which finds Captain Burnham and the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery facing a threat unlike any they’ve ever encountered. With Federation and non-Federation worlds alike feeling the impact, they must confront the unknown and work together to ensure a hopeful future for all. Produced by CBS Studios, “Star Trek Discovery” will premiere on Paramount+ on November 18.

“Psych 3: This Is Gus”

October 9, 2021, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

Calling all Psych-Os! Wait for iiiiiiiiiit……the Psych cast is back with an all-new movie! In preparation for a shotgun wedding before the birth of Baby Guster, Shawn and Groomzilla Gus go rogue in an attempt to track down Selene’s estranged husband, as Lassiter grapples with the future of his career. The cast and creators of the Peacock Original, “Psych 3: This Is Gus” reunite to discuss the upcoming film and reveal some exciting news! Moderated by Chancellor Agard.

“The Expanse”

October 9, 2021, 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM (In Person)

Main Stage 1D Hall

Join the main leads: Wes Chatham and Steven Strait of the hit Amazon show “The Expanse,” as they reflect on the series and answer fan questions!


October 9, 2021, 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

“Hanna” follows the journey of an extraordinary young woman as she strives to destroy Utrax, the sinister organization that genetically engineered her and others to be the perfect assassins. In the upcoming third season, Hanna attempts to destroy Utrax with the help of troubled ex-CIA agent Marissa Wiegler. The story crisscrosses Europe and builds to a dramatic climax when Hanna and Marissa discover the true, horrifying scope of the operation as well as who was ultimately behind it all. Join the cast and creators as they preview season 3, coming to Amazon Prime Video this fall.

“One of Us Is Lying”

October 9, 2021, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

Meet the cast and executive producers of Peacock’s highly-anticipated new original series “One of Us Is Lying.” Based on Karen M. McManus’s New York Times best-selling novel of the same title, this is the story of what happens when five high schoolers walk into detention and only four make it out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide. Join the cast and EPs of the Peacock Original series, Annalisa Cochrane (Addy), Chibuikem Uche (Cooper), Marianly Tejada (Bronwyn), Cooper van Grootel (Nate), and Mark McKenna (Simon), as well as executive producer Erica Saleh and showrunner/executive producer Darío Madrona, to discuss how they brought this fan-favorite book to life. Moderated by Ashley Bellman. ”One of Us Is Lying” starts streaming October 7, exclusively on Peacock.

“The 4400”

October 9, 2021, 5:15 PM – 6:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Based on the original TV series by Scott Peters and Renee Echevarria, 4400 overlooked, undervalued, or otherwise marginalized people who vanished without a trace over the last hundred years are all returned in an instant, having not aged a day and with no memory of what happened to them. Join series stars Brittany Adebumola, Joseph David-Jones, Ireon Roach, TL Thompson, Jaye Ladymore, Derrick A. King, Khailah Johnson, Cory Jeacoma, AMARR, and Autumn Best in a conversation moderated by showrunners Ariana Jackson and Sunil Nayar as they discuss the exciting, reimagined story and what to expect when the series premieres Monday, October 25 on The CW.

“Y: The Last Man”

October 9, 2021, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Based on the best-selling comics from Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra, FX’s highly anticipated adaptation of “Y: The Last Man” traverses a post-apocalyptic world in which a cataclysmic Event kills every mammal with a Y chromosome except for one cisgender man and his pet monkey. The series follows the survivors of this new world as they struggle with their efforts to restore what was lost and the opportunity to build something better. Currently streaming on FX on Hulu, join Executive Producer/Writer/Showrunner Eliza Clark and cast for and advanced screening of Episode 7 and a moderated discussion about how they updated the beloved books and brought them to life.

“The Girl in the Woods”

October 9, 2021, 6:45 PM – 7:45 PM (In Person)

Room 411

Peacock brings NYCC an exclusive first look at “The Girl in the Woods,” a much-anticipated series adaptation of one of the biggest IPs in Crypt TV’s monster universe. Set in the Pacific Northwest, “The Girl in the Woods” follows Carrie’s escape from her mysterious, cult-like colony that guards the world from monsters hidden behind a secret door within the woods. Join executive producers Jack Davis and Darren Brandl (Crypt TV), co-executive producer Jasmine Johnson, and director and co-executive producer Krysten Ritter as they discuss bringing this supernatural story to life and what fans can expect when the Peacock Original YA drama “The Girl in the Woods” premieres Thursday, October 21, exclusively on Peacock.

“The Hot Zone: Anthrax”

October 10, 2021, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Nat Geo’s “The Hot Zone” anthology series delves into real-life stories of outbreaks and the heroes on the frontlines. Following the dark days of 9/11, America faced a second wave of attacks: the anthrax letters, which targeted journalists and politicians. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the haunting attacks that killed five people and caused panic across the United States. Inspired by true events, “The Hot Zone: Anthrax” is a timely scientific thriller that follows an FBI Special Agent as he tracks down the killer. While many of us can remember the breaking news headlines and widespread fear that arose during this time, there are many layers to this shocking and unbelievable story that have not yet been told. In this panel, go behind-the-scenes of this chilling crime story with co-stars Tony Goldwyn and Daniel Dae Kim, and showrunners Kelly Souders and Brian Peterson.

“Star Trek: Prodigy”

October 10, 2021, 12:45 PM – 2:00 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Join Paramount+, CBS Studios and Nickelodeon for a premiere screening for the whole family of the highly anticipated upcoming “Star Trek” animated kids’ series “Star Trek: Prodigy.” Following the screening, voice cast members Kate Mulgrew, Brett Gray, Rylee Alazraqui and Dee Bradley Baker, producers Kevin Hageman, Dan Hageman and Ben Hibon, and Ramsey Naito, President, Animation & Development, Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation, will take the stage for a moderated panel discussion.

Developed by Emmy® Award-winners Kevin and Dan Hageman (“Trollhunters” and “Ninjago”) the CG-animated series “Star Trek: Prodigy” is the first “Star Trek” series aimed at younger audiences and will follow a motley crew of young aliens who must figure out how to work together while navigating a greater galaxy, in search for a better future. These six young outcasts know nothing about the ship they have commandeered – a first in the history of the Star Trek Franchise – but over the course of their adventures together, they will each be introduced to Starfleet and the ideals it represents. Produced by the Nickelodeon Animation Studio and CBS Studios, “Star Trek: Prodigy” will premiere on Paramount+ on October 28.

“Just Beyond”

October 10, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Inspired by the writings of R.L. Stine, the Disney+ series “Just Beyond” tells astonishing and thought-provoking stories of a reality just beyond the one we know. In each of the eight unique stories, viewers meet a new cast of characters who must go on a surprising journey of self-discovery in a supernatural world of witches, aliens, ghosts and parallel universes. Join cast Cedric Joe, Megan Stott, Lexi Underwood along with creator and executive producer Seth Grahame-Smith and co-executive producer R.L. Stine for a Q&A moderated by TV Guide Magazine’s Damian Holbrook

“The Badass Women of ‘The Walking Dead'”

October 10, 2021, 2:00 – 3:00 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

We’ve seen the women of The Walking Dead Universe take down massive herds, horrible villains and lead their communities through hardship. This panel will celebrate the evolution of these fierce, strong female leads from every walk of life, starting from when we are first introduced to these characters and how we’ve watched them survive the apocalypse. Join EPs, directors and cast members as they discuss their favorite character storylines, their journeys and the importance of having strong female representation onscreen. Panelists: Alexa Mansour, Aliyah Royale, Angela Kang, Annet Mahendru, Christine Evangelista, Denise Huth, Jenna Elfman, Karen David, Lauren Cohan, Paola Lazaro. Moderator: Yvette Nicole Brown.

“What We Do in the Shadows'”

October 10, 2021, 2:45 – 3:45 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

FX’s Emmy®-nominated vampire comedy “What We Do in the Shadows” returns to New York Comic Con for a live discussion with members of the cast and creative team. Catch a special presentation of an upcoming episode and join special guests in a lively conversation about the series Rolling Stone named “the funniest show on television.” What We Do in the Shadows is a documentary-style look into the daily (or rather, nightly) lives of four vampires who’ve “lived” together for hundreds of years. Seasons 3 currently airs Thursdays at 10pm ET/PT on FX and streams the next day on FX on Hulu.  Don’t miss the chance to attend the Vampiric Council of the Eastern Seaboard of the New World’s first public meeting! BAT!


(All panel descriptions are courtesy of New York Comic Con.)

Virtual = Panelists will not appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

In Person = Panelists will appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

“Welcome to the Blumhouse”

October 7, 2021, 3:45 PM – 4:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

This October, Welcome to the Blumhouse returns exclusively to Amazon Prime Video with the worldwide release of four electrifying new thrillers that plumb the depths of humanity’s deepest and darkest fears: “Bingo Hell” (directed by Gigi Saul Guerrero), “Black as Night” (directed by Maritte Lee Go), “Madres” (directed by Ryan Zaragoza) and “The Manor” (directed by Axelle Carolyn). Join all four directors, with a special introduction by Founder and CEO of Blumhouse Productions Jason Blum, as they discuss the importance of showcasing female and emerging directors while delivering original stories to audiences everywhere. “Bingo Hell” and “Black as Night” premiere October 1, “Madres” and “The Manor” premiere October 8, all on Amazon Prime Video. Panel moderated by Dino-Ray Ramos.

“My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission”

October 8, 2021, 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Your sneak peek into the next chapter of the global anime phenomenon starts here. Presented by Funimation, the panel includes an exclusive preview of My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission. Hear from the dub cast and crew before the movie hits theaters October 29! Panelists: Voice cast members Ryan Colt Levy (Rody), Sarah Roach (Clair Voyance), Lisa Oritz (Burnin), Cristina Vee (Pino), Series and movie ADR Script Writer, Jeramey Kraatz. Moderator: Lauren Moore.

“Ghostbusters: Afterlife”

October 8, 2021, 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Director Jason Reitman and producer Ivan Reitman will be joined by some of the cast of Sony Pictures’ “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” for an in-depth conversation. The panel will cover the highly-anticipated new film and the franchise at-large, one of the most beloved in pop culture history. In addition to insightful conversation the panel will feature never-before-seen clips from the film.

“Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train”

October 9, 2021, 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Board the Mugen Train once again! Presented by Funimation, this panel is your deep dive into “Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train.” Join the English voices of some of your favorite characters as they discuss everything from heart-wrenching scenes to moments that fans love most.

2021 Tony Awards: ‘Moulin Rouge! The Musical’ is the top winner

September 26, 2021

by Carla Hay

Tony Awards logo

With 10 prizes, including Best Musical, “Moulin Rouge!” was the top winner at the 74th annual Tony Awards, which took place at the Winter Garden Theater in New York City on September 26, 2021. “Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” which is based on the 2001 original musical movie, had 14 Tony nominations. The ceremony, which handed out most of the award categories, was streamed on Paramount+ and was hosted by Audra McDonald.

The biggest Tony Award categories were presented in a companion show titled “The Tony Awards Present: Broadway’s Back!,” which was hosted by Leslie Odom Jr. and had more emphasis live performances than on giving awards. CBS had the U.S. telecast of “The Tony Awards Present: Broadway’s Back!,” which Paramount+ had also available for streaming. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 74th annual Tony Awards ceremony was postponed from its original date of June 7, 2020. The Tony Awards are presented by the American Theatre Wing and the Broadway League.

“The Inheritance,” which had 11 nominations, won four Tony Awards: Best Play; Best Direction of a Play (for Stephen Daldry); Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play (for Andrew Burnap); and Best Performances by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play (for Lois Smith).

“Jagged Little Pill” was the top contender going into the ceremony, with 15 nods. In the end, “Jagged Little Pill” won two Tony Awards: Best Book of a Musical for Diablo Cody) and Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical (for Lauren Patten). The musical features songs from Alanis Morissette’s Grammy-winning 1995 multiplatinum album “Jagged Little Pill.”

“A Christmas Carol” won all five Tony Awards for which it was nominated: Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre; Best Scenic Design of a Play; Best Costume Design of a Play; Best Sound Design of a Play; and Best Lighting Design of a Play.

“A Soldier’s Play” won two of its seven nominations: Best Revival of a Play and Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play (for David Alan Grier). “Tina — The Tina Turner Musical” had 12 nominations and won one: Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical (for Adrienne Warren). Meanwhile, Mary-Louise Parker of “The Sound Inside” won the Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play, which was the only Tony Award won of the show’s six nominations.

On March 12, 2020, all Broadway shows were shut down due to the pandemic. The re-opening for Broadway shows was tentatively set for May 2021, but was eventually changed to September 2021. The traditional eligibility period for the 2021 Tony Awards (June 2020 to May 2021) has now been completely wiped out, since there were no Broadway shows playing during this eligibility period. However, the next Tony Awards is expected to take place sometime in 2022.

Because of the COVID-19 shutdown of Broadway shows, many of the Tony Awards categories for the 74th ceremony had less nominees than usual. Some categories (including Best Musical and Best Revival of a Play) that normally had five nominations each have three or less nominations for the category this year. In the category for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical, there was only one nominee: Aaron Tveit of “Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” which made him the default winner.

Prizes in non-competitive categories are also handed out at each Tony Awards ceremony. Choreographer/dancer/theater director Garciela Daniele received the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre. The Broadway Advocacy Coalition, “David Byrne’s American Utopia” and Freestyle Love Supreme were the recipients of the Special Tony Award. The Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award went to actress Julie Halston, for her work in battling pulmonary fibrosis. The recipients of the Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre were director Fred Gallo, producer Irene Gandy, stage manager Beverly Jenkins, and New Federal Theatre and its founder Woodie King Jr.

Presenters at the 74th annual Tony Awards and “The Tony Awards Present: Broadway’s Back!” included Annaleigh Ashford, Jon Batiste, Stephanie J. Block, Wayne Brady, Tituss Burgess, Kristin Chenoweth, Darren Criss, André De Shields, Robbie Fairchild, Beanie Feldstein, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Jordan Fisher, Santino Fontana, Andrew Garfield, Jared Grimes, Josh Groban, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jennifer Holliday, Christopher Jackson, Nikki M. James, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ron Cephas Jones, Cyndi Lauper, Norm Lewis, John Lithgow, Lindsay Mendez, Tony Awards host McDonald, Idina Menzel, Ruthie Ann Miles, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Jennifer Nettles, Lynn Nottage, Bebe Neuwirth, Odom, Kelli O’Hara, Adam Pascal, Bernadette Peters, Ben Platt, Jeremy Pope, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Andrew Rannells, Anthony Rapp, Chita Rivera, Anika Noni Rose, Daphne Rubin-Vega Lea Salonga, Ali Stroker, Black Thought, Courtney B. Vance, Daniel J. Watts, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and BD Wong.

Performers included David Byrne and the cast of “American Utopia”; John Legend and the cast of “Ain’t Too Proud”; Odom and Groban, who prefaced the performance with talking about how they are both alumni of Carnegie Mellon University’s arts program; and a reunion of the cast members of “Hairspray,” including Marissa Jaret Winokur, Matthew Morrison, Kerry Butler, Chester Gregory and Darlene Love. The ceremony ended with a performance by Freestyle Love Supreme, featuring Miranda, James Monroe Iglehart, Christopher Jackson, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Wayne Brady, Anthony Veneziale, Chris Sullivan, Kiala Mullady, Aneesa Folds, Bill Sherman, Arthur Lewis, Tarik Davis, Andrew Bancroft, Ashley P. Flanagan and Ian Weinberger.

Here is the complete list of winners and nominations for the 2021 Tony Awards:


Best Play

Grand Horizons

Author: Bess Wohl
Producers: Second Stage Theater, Carole Rothman, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Mandy Greenfield

The Inheritance*

Author: Matthew López
Producers: Tom Kirdahy, Sonia Friedman Productions, Hunter Arnold, Elizabeth Dewberry & Ali Ahmet Kocabiyik, 1001 Nights Productions, Robert Greenblatt, Mark Lee, Peter May, Scott Rudin, Richard Winkler, Bruce Cohen, Mara Isaacs, Greg Berlanti & Robbie Rogers, Brad Blume, Burnt Umber Productions, Shane Ewen, Greenleaf Productions, Marguerite Hoffman, Oliver Roth, Joseph Baker/Drew Hodges, Stephanie P. McClelland, Broadway Strategic Return Fund, Caiola Productions, Mary J. Davis, Kayla Greenspan, Fakston Productions, FBK Productions, Sally Cade Holmes, Benjamin Lowy, MWM Live, Lee & Alec Seymour, Lorenzo Thione, Sing Out, Louise! Productions, AB Company/Julie Boardman, Adam Zell & Co/ZKM Media, Jamie deRoy/Catherine Adler, DeSantis-Baugh Productions/Adam Hyndman, Gary DiMauro/Meredith Lynsey Schade, John Goldwyn/Silva Theatrical Group, Deborah Green/Christina Mattsson, Cliff Hopkins/George Scarles, Invisible Wall Productions/Lauren Stein, Sharon Karmazin/Broadway Factor NYC, Brian Spector/Madeleine Foster Bersin, Undivided Productions/Hysell Dohr Group, Ushkowitzlatimer Productions/Tyler Mount, The Young Vic

Sea Wall/A Life

Author: Simon Stephens & Nick Payne
Producers: Nine Stories, Ambassador Theatre Group, Seaview Productions, Benjamin Lowy Productions, LFG Theatrical, Audible, Gavin Kalin Productions, Glass Half Full Productions, Jacob Langfelder, Brian Moreland, Roth-Manella Productions, Salman Vienn Al-Rashid Friends, SLSM Theatricals, Teresa Tsai, Dunetz Restieri Productions, Morwin Schmookler, Jane & Mark Wilf, The Public Theater, Oskar Eustis, Patrick Willingham, Mandy Hackett

Slave Play

Author: Jeremy O. Harris
Producers: Seaview Productions, Troy Carter, Level Forward, Nine Stories, Sing Out, Louise! Productions, Shooting Star Productions, Roth-Manella Productions, Carlin Katler Productions, Cohen Hopkins Productions, Thomas Laub, Blair Russell, WEB Productions, Salman Al-Rashid, Jeremy O. Harris, Mark Shacket, New York Theatre Workshop

The Sound Inside

Author: Adam Rapp
Producers: Jeffrey Richards, Lincoln Center Theater, Rebecca Gold, Evamere Entertainment, Eric Falkenstein, Salman Vienn Al-Rashid, Spencer Ross, FilmNation Entertainment/Faliro House, Iris Smith, Jane Bergère, Caiola Productions, Mark S. Golub and David S. Golub, Ken Greiner, Gemini Theatrical Investors, Scott H. Mauro, Jayne Baron Sherman, CZEKAJ Productions, Wendy Morgan-Hunter, Kristin Foster, Brian Moreland, Sonia Mudbhatkal, Jacob Soroken Porter, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Mandy Greenfield

Best Musical

Jagged Little Pill

Producers: Vivek J. Tiwary, Arvind Ethan David, Eva Price, Caiola Productions, Level Forward & Abigail Disney, Geffen Playhouse-Tenenbaum-Feinberg, James L. Nederlander, Dean Borell Moravis Silver, Stephen G. Johnson, Concord Theatricals, Bard Theatricals, M. Kilburg Reedy,, Betsy Dollinger, Sundowners, The Araca Group, Jana Bezdek, Len Blavatnik, BSL Enterprises, Burnt Umber Productions, Darren DeVerna & Jeremiah Harris, Daryl Roth, Susan Edelstein, FG Productions, Sue Gilad & Larry Rogowsky, Harmonia, John Gore Theatrical Group, Melissa M. Jones & Barbara H. Freitag, Stephanie Kramer, Lamplighter Projects, Christina Isaly Liceaga, David Mirvish, Spencer B. Ross, Bellanca Smigel Rutter, Iris Smith, Jason Taylor & Sydney Suiter, Rachel Weinstein, W.I.T. Productions/Gabriel Creative Partners, Independent Presenters Network, Universal Music Publishing Group, Jujamcyn Theaters, Tamar Climan, American Repertory Theater

Moulin Rouge! The Musical*

Producers: Carmen Pavlovic, Gerry Ryan, Global Creatures, Bill Damaschke, Aaron Lustbader, Hunter Arnold, Darren Bagert, Erica Lynn Schwartz/Matt Picheny/Stephanie Rosenberg, Adam Blanshay Productions/Nicolas & Charles Talar, Iris Smith, Aleri Entertainment, CJ ENM, Sophie Qi/Harmonia Holdings, Baz & Co./Len Blavatnik, AF Creative Media/International Theatre Fund, Endeavor Content, Tom & Pam Faludy, Gilad-Rogowsky/Instone Productions, John Gore Organization, MEHR-BB Entertainment GmbH, Spencer Ross, Nederlander Presentations/IPN, Eric Falkenstein/Suzanne Grant, Jennifer Fischer, Peter May/Sandy Robertson, Triptyk Studios, Carl Daikeler/Sandi Moran, DeSantis-Baugh Productions, Red Mountain Theatre Company/, Candy Spelling/Tulchin Bartner, Roy Furman, Jujamcyn Theaters

Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Producers: Stage Entertainment, James L. Nederlander, Tali Pelman, Feste Investments B.V., David Mirvish, Nattering Way, TEG Dainty, Katori Hall, Mark Rubinstein LTD, Warner Chappell, Peter May, Eva Price, No Guarantees, Caiola Productions, Jamie deRoy, Wendy Federman, Roy Furman, Independent Presenters Network, John Gore Organization, Marc Levine, Carl Moellenberg, Al Nocciolino, Catherine Adler, Tom Perakos, Iris Smith, Candy Spelling, Anita Waxman, Daryl Roth, Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Universal Music Publishing Group, Tina Turner

Best Revival of a Play


Producers: Ambassador Theatre Group Productions, Benjamin Lowy Productions, Gavin Kalin Productions, Glass Half Full Productions, AnnaPurna Theatre, Hunter Arnold, Burnt Umber Productions, Rashad V. Chambers, Eilene Davidson Productions, KFF Productions, Dominick LaRuffa, Jr., Stephanie P. McClelland, Richard Winkler/Alan Shorr, The Jamie Lloyd Company

Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune

Author: Terrence McNally
Producers: Hunter Arnold, Debbie Bisno, Tom Kirdahy, Elizabeth Dewberry & Ali Ahmet Kocabiyik, Broadway Strategic Return Fund, Caiola Productions, FedermanGold Productions, Invisible Wall Productions, John Gore Organization, Mike Karns, Kilimanjaro Theatricals, Peter May, Tyler Mount, Seriff Productions, Silva Theatrical Group, Cliff Bleszinski/GetterLazarDaly, Jamie deRoy/Gary DiMauro, Suzi Dietz & Lenny Beer/Sally Cade Holmes, Barbara H. Freitag/Ken Davenport, Barry & Kimberly Gowdy/Mabee Family Office, Kayla Greenspan/Jamie Joeyen-Waldorf, John Joseph/Broadway Factor, Tilted Windmills/John Paterakis, The Shubert Organization

A Soldier’s Play*

Author: Charles Fuller
Producers: Roundabout Theatre Company, Todd Haimes, Julia C. Levy, Sydney Beers, Steve Dow

Best Book of a Musical

Jagged Little Pill*

Diablo Cody

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

John Logan

Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Katori Hall, Frank Ketelaar and Kees Prins

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre

A Christmas Carol*

Music: Christopher Nightingale

The Inheritance

Music: Paul Englishby

The Rose Tattoo

Music: Fitz Patton and Jason Michael Webb

Slave Play

Music: Lindsay Jones

The Sound Inside

Music: Daniel Kluger

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play

Ian Barford, Linda Vista
Andrew Burnap, The Inheritance*
Jake Gyllenhaal, Sea Wall/A Life
Tom Hiddleston, Betrayal
Tom Sturridge, Sea Wall/A Life
Blair Underwood, A Soldier’s Play

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play

Joaquina Kalukango, Slave Play
Laura Linney, My Name is Lucy Barton
Audra McDonald, Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune
Mary-Louise Parker, The Sound Inside*

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical

Aaron Tveit, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical

Karen Olivo, Moulin Rouge! The Musical
Elizabeth Stanley, Jagged Little Pill
Adrienne Warren, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical*

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play

Ato Blankson-Wood, Slave Play
James Cusati-Moyer, Slave Play
David Alan Grier, A Soldier’s Play*
John Benjamin Hickey, The Inheritance
Paul Hilton, The Inheritance

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play

Jane Alexander, Grand Horizons
Chalia La Tour, Slave Play
Annie McNamara, Slave Play
Lois Smith, The Inheritance*
Cora Vander Broek, Linda Vista

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical

Danny Burstein, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*
Derek Klena, Jagged Little Pill
Sean Allan Krill, Jagged Little Pill
Sahr Ngaujah, Moulin Rouge! The Musical
Daniel J. Watts, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical

Kathryn Gallagher, Jagged Little Pill
Celia Rose Gooding, Jagged Little Pill
Robyn Hurder, Moulin Rouge! The Musical
Lauren Patten, Jagged Little Pill*
Myra Lucretia Taylor, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Best Scenic Design of a Play

Bob Crowley, The Inheritance
Soutra Gilmour, Betrayal
Rob Howell, A Christmas Carol*
Derek McLane, A Soldier’s Play
Clint Ramos, Slave Play

Best Scenic Design of a Musical

Riccardo Hernández and Lucy Mackinnon, Jagged Little Pill
Derek McLane, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*
Mark Thompson and Jeff Sugg, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Best Costume Design of a Play

Dede Ayite, Slave Play
Dede Ayite, A Soldier’s Play
Bob Crowley, The Inheritance
Rob Howell, A Christmas Carol*
Clint Ramos, The Rose Tattoo

Best Costume Design of a Musical

Emily Rebholz, Jagged Little Pill
Mark Thompson, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical
Catherine Zuber, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*

Best Lighting Design of a Play

Jiyoun Chang, Slave Play
Jon Clark, The Inheritance
Heather Gilbert, The Sound Inside
Allen Lee Hughes, A Soldier’s Play
Hugh Vanstone, A Christmas Carol*

Best Lighting Design of a Musical

Bruno Poet, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical
Justin Townsend, Jagged Little Pill
Justin Townsend, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*

Best Sound Design of a Play

Paul Arditti & Christopher Reid, The Inheritance
Simon Baker, A Christmas Carol*
Lindsay Jones, Slave Play
Daniel Kluger, Sea Wall/A Life
Daniel Kluger, The Sound Inside

Best Sound Design of a Musical

Jonathan Deans, Jagged Little Pill
Peter Hylenski, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*
Nevin Steinberg, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Best Direction of a Play

David Cromer, The Sound Inside
Stephen Daldry, The Inheritance*
Kenny Leon, A Soldier’s Play
Jamie Lloyd, Betrayal
Robert O’Hara, Slave Play

Best Direction of a Musical

Phyllida Lloyd, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical
Diane Paulus, Jagged Little Pill
Alex Timbers, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*

Best Choreography

Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Jagged Little Pill
Sonya Tayeh, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*
Anthony Van Laast, Tina – The Tina Turner Musical

Best Orchestrations

Tom Kitt, Jagged Little Pill
Katie Kresek, Charlie Rosen, Matt Stine and Justin Levine, Moulin Rouge! The Musical*
Ethan Popp, Tina — The Tina Turner Musical

Review: ‘Reminiscence’ (2021), starring Hugh Jackman

September 25, 2021

by Carla Hay

Rebecca Ferguson and Hugh Jackman in “Reminiscence” (Photo by Ben Rothstein/Warner Bros. Pictures)

“Reminiscence” (2021)

Directed by Lisa Joy

Culture Representation: Taking place in Miami and New Orleans, the sci-fi dramatic film “Reminiscence” features a predominantly white cast of characters (with some black people, Asians and Latinos and one Māori person) representing the working-class, middle-class, wealthy and criminal underground.

Culture Clash: A private investigator, who is in the business of helping people recover memories, becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to a former client/lover who suddenly disappeared. 

Culture Audience: “Reminiscence” will appeal primarily to people who are fans of star Hugh Jackman, but even he can’t save this boring sci-fi drivel.

Cliff Curtis and Daniel Wu in “Reminiscence” (Photo by Ben Rothstein/Warner Bros. Pictures)

The sci-fi drama “Reminiscence” features several people submerged in a water tank as they recover or relive their memories. Ironically, this ill-conceived movie is utterly forgettable, as it submerges viewers in a story that’s both convoluted and predictable. Hugh Jackman’s charisma as a leading man is stifled as he plays a grim private detective who is obsessed with finding an ex-lover who suddenly vanished from his life.

Adding to this film’s muddled tone, “Reminiscence” (written and directed by Lisa Joy, in her feature-film directorial debut) can’t decide if it wants to be a futuristic adventure or a tribute to classic noir. The movie looks like it wants to be an action thriller, but there’s more mopey drama than action. The fight scenes are extremely formulaic and almost mind-numbing.

Mostly, the pace drags in this jumbled story where bitter people sulk and get angry because they think their lives have gone downhill in some way. Almost every character in this film dosn’t have a memorable personality. Good luck to anyone who tries to stay awake during this 116-minute snoozefest.

“Reminiscence” takes place in Miami, in an unidentified future year when climate change has caused unbearable heat outside during the day, and Miami is close to being swallowed up by the Atlantic Ocean. Because of the extreme daytime heat from the sun, Miami and the surrounding areas in Florida have become more nocturnal than ever before.

But apparently, in this futuristic version of Miami, no one wants good lighting, because it’s constantly dark indoors. The darkly lit cinematography is “Reminiscence” is supposed to evoke a society that’s on the brink of an environmental disaster. The only disaster going in is how this awful movie wastes the talents of the cast members.

It’s in this darkly lit and depressing Miami where private investigator Nick Bannister (played by Jackman) lives and works. Nick is a never-married bachelor with no children. He owns a detective agency that’s small (only two employees, including Nick) and struggling to stay in business. Nick’s specialty at the detective agency is helping people recover their memories. The agency’s work space (which looks more like an abandoned warehouse than an office) is predictably dark, cluttered and dingy in this dark, cluttered and dingy movie.

For this memory recovery process, Nick has a massive water tank that’s not widely available, and he doesn’t want too many people to know that he has this tank. Therefore, he doesn’t advertise and gets most of his business through word of mouth. The tank was originally designed to interrogate people who were detained by the U.S. military. Nick is a veteran of the U.S. Navy, where he worked in border patrol. It’s implied that he got access to this tank through his military service.

In order to a use this memory tank, a person must first be injected with a sedative, then submerged in the tank, where a special helmet must be worn that can connect to brain electrodes. When someone is reliving a memory, it’s depicted as being a participant in a virtual reality experience. Memories while in the tank can also take the form of looking like holograms.

It’s possible for someone to stay in the tank for long periods of time and have a state of being that’s very similar to someone in a coma. Nick has found that his regular clients have become addicted to accessing happy memories. Watts is more concerned than Nick is about people getting addicted to using the memory tank. Nick thinks Watts has no place being judgmental about addiction, considering her alcohol addiction that she doesn’t seem too concerned about stopping.

All of this sounds like the basis for a good story. However, “Reminiscence” becomes very disjointed and often illogical. Viewers will get the impression that “Reminiscence” writer/director Joy came up with separate ideas for this movie and then tried to make them all fit into the overall narrative. The result is like looking at a jigsaw puzzle where too many of the pieces obviously don’t belong.

During his time in the military, Nick injured one of his legs, so he walks with a limp. This limp magically seems to disappear during some of the action scenes. A better director would’ve noticed this discrepancy and corrected it. Nick’s only employee is a cynical alcoholic named Emily “Watts” Sanders (played by Thandie Newton), who is also a military veteran. Even though Watts is an alcoholic, she’s more responsible and more business-minded than Nick is.

In the movie’s first scene with Nick and Watts together, she abruptly scolds him for being late. Nick says in response that being late is a construct of linear [time], which is a concept that he doesn’t think applies to the work of this detective agency. Watts snaps back sarcastically, “And yet, we charge by the hour.”

One day, right before they close the agency for the night, a mysterious woman suddenly arrives and says she needs their help to find her missing keys. Watts tries to tell her to come back during open business hours, but Nick is immediately attracted to the woman and tells her that they can accommodate her request.

She introduces herself as Mae (played by Rebecca Ferguson), and she says that she’s a cabaret nightclub singer. She’s wearing the type of slinky red evening gown that looks like she just left a nightclub or she raided the closet of animation seductress character Jessica Rabbit from “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” Mae’s sensual nightclub singing scenes and how she’s styled for them look very much like they were inspired by Jessica Rabbit.

At the detective agency during Mae’s sudden appearance, Watts offers Mae a swimsuit, because it’s what people usually wear inside the water tank. But to the surprise of Nick and Watts, this woman they just met has no qualms about stripping completely naked in front of them before she gets in the tank. Mae confidently tells Nick that he’s going to see her naked anyway. And she’s right. At least this movie doesn’t try to play coy about Mae and Nick inevitably becoming romantically involved.

With the help of the memory tank, Mae finds out where she left her keys. But since she essentially told Nick that she wants to get to know him intimately, he’s not going to just let her walk out of his life. He shows up at one of her nightclub gigs to see her perform, he asks her out on a date, and they end up having a hot and heavy romance.

Meanwhile, Nick makes extra money by assisting the Miami district attorney Avery Castillo (played by Natalie Martinez) in getting information from witnesses. Avery is currently involved in a high-profile case where a wealthy land baron named Walter Sylvan (played by Brett Cullen) has been accused of masterminding arson of some of his property, in order for him to collect on hefty fire insurance payouts. Walter has pleaded not guilty. His wife Tamara Sylvan (played by Marina de Tavira) and his young adult son Sebastian Sylvan (played by Mojean Aria) loyally stand by him and are unwavering in their support.

Another member of law enforcement whom Nick is in close contact with is Miami police officer Cyrus Boothe (played by Cliff Curtis), who seems to be on a power trip where he has a lot of disdain for disenfranchised people. In a city that’s on the verge of an apocalypse, Cyrus wants to wield as much power as he can. It should come as no surprise what he’s willing to do to fulfill his ambitions.

And a movie about a private detective and law enforcement in Miami predictably has a storyline about drug dealers too. In “Reminiscence,” the world is plagued by the abuse of an illegal opioid-like drug called baca. One of the top distributors/sellers of baca is a drug lord called Saint Joe (played by Daniel Wu), who is a stereotypical drug lord in a movie. Unfortunately, Wu’s stiff acting doesn’t make him look convincing as a dangerous drug lord. It just makes him look like an actor who needs more acting lessons.

After getting involved with Mae and thinking that their romance could turn into a long-term commitment, Nick is shocked to find out that Mae has suddenly moved away without telling anyone where she went. Upon investigation, Nick discovers that Mae was not kidnapped but left on her own free will. This discovery sends him down a rabbit hole of obsession to find out where Mae is.

Nick’s investigation eventually leads him to New Orleans, where he finds clues about a mysterious and vulnerable woman named Elsa Carine (played by Angela Sarafyan), who has a pivotal connection to someone in the story. There’s also a do-gooder named Frances (played by Barbara Bonilla), who lives in a house on stilts in the Atlantic Ocean. As Nick tries to solve the mystery of Mae’s apparently deliberate disappearance, he becomes addicted to using the memory tank to bask in his happy memories of her. His addiction gets in the way of his detective agency’s business and prevents Nick from being present in the real world.

Because Nick spends so much time in the memory tank, expect to see many flashbacks to the good times that he had with Mae. It’s his way of trying to remember any possible clues or hints of Mae’s disappearance. However, because Mae’s abrupt disappearance has deeply hurt Nick, Watts knows there’s more to Nick’s fixation on remembering Mae than trying to gather clues. He’s using his addiction to being in the memory tank as a way to avoid his emotional pain, just like the clients who are also addicted to using the memory tank.

“Reminiscence” has a very superficial way of dealing with these psychological issues. Instead, the movie seems more fascinated with having dream-like visual effects (which are good, but not outstanding) and showing recurring images of people being immersed in water in some way. “Reminiscence” writer/director Joy is one of the showrunners of the HBO sci-fi series “Westworld” (Newton is an Emmy-winning “Westworld” co-star), and Joy seems to have struggled to find a way to make the story she probably had mind into a two-hour movie. It’s why “Reminiscence” tries to cram in too much in the last third of the movie, while the middle of the movie is a long and monotonous stretch of repetition.

“Reminiscence” also misses the mark in casting decisions and in the characters’ witless dialogue. Jackman and Ferguson had more chemistry together when they co-starred in the 2017 movie musical “The Greatest Showman” (where their characters weren’t lovers but had some sexual tension with each other) than they do as portraying lovers in “Reminiscence.” The lines that Jackman and Ferguson have to utter in “Reminiscence” sound like they were rejected from a bad romance novel.

Jackman is a very talented actor, but he seems miscast as someone who’s supposed to be an emotionally damaged and stoic detective. He delivers his lines flatly, as if his character has a dead personality. Only in Nick’s scenes with Mae does Nick doesn’t show any hints that he could be passionate about anything. Ferguson is perfectly adequate as the enigmatic Mae, but her “seductive diva” singing scenes in “Reminiscence” seem overly contrived and pale in comparison to Ferguson’s more appealing “seductive diva” singing scenes in “The Greatest Showman.”

“Reminiscence” hints at but never really follows through with the notion that Nick has post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from his military background. He’s definitely not getting therapy for it. Watts is Nick’s unofficial counselor, and she’s the one who points out to Nick that he’s using the memory tank to “self-medicate.”

The movie tells more about Watts’ own troubled history than it tells about Nick’s turbulent past, even though Nick is the story’s protagonist/central character. Newton’s Watts is the only character in “Reminiscence” that comes close to being depicted as complex, with Newton capably handling the role of an emotionally wounded person who tries to hide her pain in alcohol and a tough-talking persona. All the other characters in “Reminiscence” are quite two-dimensional.

Ultimately, “Reminiscence” could have been a much better movie if the story and dialogue were better-crafted. The writing seems like it was made for a comic book rather than a feature film. In a comic book, it’s easier to get away with chopping up the story in a boxy manner. In a movie, the story needs to flow more seamlessly, but “Reminiscence” fails to do that because it’s a film with an identity crisis of not knowing what it wants to be in the first place.

Warner Bros. Pictures released “Reminiscence” in U.S. cinemas and on HBO Max on August 20, 2021.