TV shows I can’t wait to watch in 2019

Ryan Gosling in Crazy, Stupid, Love. with Steve Carell
Steve Carell in The 40-Year-Old Virgin with Leslie Mann
Leslie Mann in The Other Woman with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau in Game of Thrones

As promised, here is the followup to my list of Movies I can’t wait to see in 2019. Because of all the great content out there right now, this list turned out to be a bit longer than the movies one. And, if it’s any indication by the wonderful Sex EducationRussian Doll and The Other Two which have already premiered this year, we should be in store for a lot of great shows in 2019.

So, Live from My Couch here it is…

Shows I can’t wait to watch in 2019:

gotfinal

1. Game of Thrones final season (April 14 on HBO)
This one is a no-brainer, and I’ve already got plans for six Sundays from April through May. However I would like to speak to a manager about HBO scheduling the premiere during Arichella. You can get your first glimpse of the final season footage in this epic HBO promo (and keep your eyes peeled for clips from a few other shows that may be on this list).

2. Mindhunter season 2 (TBA on Netflix)
The show also made my list last year, but I’m crossing my fingers that Netflix finally drops the second season sometime soon (season 1 was released in October 2017). With David Fincher back behind the camera for two episodes this season, I’m only more excited to finally binge season 2.

3. His Dark Materials (TBA on HBO)
The His Dark materials series may not be well-known other than the so-so 2017 adaptation of the first book, but the fantasy series is one of my favorites. This series is so big that it’s being produced as a co-production between the BBC and HBO. Let this very brief teaser tide you over until the premiere. P.S. The Subtle Knife (book 2) is a standout, and the show has already been renewed for a second season.

4. Stranger Things 3 (TBA on Netflix)
Not much to say here other than I’m hoping for the return of Dad Steve!

5. Big Little Lies season 2 (TBA on HBO)
I thought season 1 was fun (though a little overrated), but I will not be left out of the watercooler conversations when BLL returns. It’s a wonder they even managed to coordinate the cast’s schedules for season 2, let alone add Meryl into the mix. I will be sipping wine along with Renata during every episode.

6. Jane the Virgin final season (March 27 on The CW)
Consistently one of the best shows on television, Jane the Virgin finally returns next month after THAT cliffhanger. Even though it’s sad to see the show come to an end, I respect creator Jennie Snyder Urman for having an endgame for the show in mind and completing a full story arc (hopefully with several telenovela-inspired twists).

7. Devs (TBA on FX)
Ex Machina and Annihilation‘s Alex Garland does a sci-fi show for FX. Count me in.

8. The Mandalorian (TBA on Disney+)
Disney will likely use the first Star Wars live action series as a a big part of the Disney+ OTT service launch, and I will be one of the first subscribers. The directors list (including Rick Famuyiwa, Bryce Dallas Howard and Taika Waititi) is also one of the most intriguing lineups I’ve seen in a while.

9. Watchmen (TBA on HBO)
Though I’m still a little skeptical about basing a show on the classic graphic novel, I’m optimistic that Damon Lindelof will use it as a jumping off point to create his own stories and memorable characters.

10 . Killing Eve season 2 (April 7 on BBC America)
I’m glad I waited to catch up with Killing Eve season 1 until last fall because I’m not sure if I could wait much longer for season 2. Eve returns April 7.

11. Chilling Adventures of Sabrina part 2 (April 5 on Netflix) – I’m ready for white-haired Sabrina!
12. Pose season 2 (TBA on FX) – Here’s to hoping there isn’t a longer waiting period between season 1 and 2.
13. Fosse/Verdon (April 9 on FX) – You may have caught the teaser during the Oscars.

14. The Netflix sophomores: YOU, The End of the F***ing World, Elite, On My Block and The OA (all TBA on Netflix) – Some of the best shows on TV last year return for their second seasons on Netflix.

15. The Handmaid’s Tale season 3 (June 5 on Hulu) – We’ll get the first three episodes on June 5.
16. The New Ryan Murphys: The Politician & Ratched (both TBA on Netflix) – Hopefully we’ll be blessed with the first shows from his new overall deal with Netflix this year!
17. Central Park Five (TBA on Netflix) – Ava DuVernay’s miniseries should be one of the most talked about series of the year.
18. Too Old to Die Young (TBA on Amazon Prime) – Also made my list last year. Hurry up, Nicolas!
19. BoJack Horseman season 6 (TBA on Netflix) – Still one of the most authentic portrayals of Hollywood on TV at the moment.

20. Black Mirror season 5 (TBA on Netflix) – We got the interactive Bandersnatch last year, and we should get a new batch of creepy episodes this year.
21. Lovecraft Country (TBA on HBO) – Jordan Peele’s new show on HBO.
22. Dear White People Vol. 3 (TBA on Netflix) – Excited to see what happens after Vol. 2’s cliffhanger of an ending.
23. Utopia (TBA on Amazon Prime) – Gillian Flynn’s new show should premiere sometime this year on Amazon.
24. The Underground Railroad (TBA on Amazon Prime) – Barry Jenkins will direct all episodes for his new show on Amazon. Mark your Emmy ballots now.

25. Untitled Morning Show Drama (TBA on Apple) – Jennifer Aniston, Reese Whitherspoon and Steve Carell. Count me in.
26. The Hunt (TBA on Amazon Prime) – Jordan Peele is working overtime and giving us a second show on Amazon with a great hook. This one stars Logan Lerman and Al Pacino.
27. Orange Is the New Black final season (TBA on Netflix) – I’ve stuck with the girls for six seasons, and I’m excited to see how this one ends.
28. The Loudest Voice (TBA on Showtime) – Russell Crowe as Roger Ailes and Naomi Watts as Gretchen Carlson. Alright.
29. The Twilight Zone (April 1 on CBS All Access) – Yes I will be signing up for a free trial of CBS All Access for this one.
30. Whatever Shondaland releases on Netflix this year – Correct.

Honorable Mentions: Now Apocalypse (March 10 on Starz), Looking for Alaska (TBA on Hulu), Homecoming season 2 (TBA on Amazon Prime), Queer Eye season 3 (March 15 on Netflix), Catch-22 (May 17 on Hulu), Locke & Key (TBA on Netflix), Euphoria (TBA on HBO) and LOVE DEATH + ROBOTS (March 15 on Netflix)

If you’ve made it this far, thanks! Cheers to all the great content in 2019.

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Movies I can’t wait to see in 2019

Ryan Gosling in First Man with Claire Foy
Claire Foy in Breathe with Andrew Garfield
Andrew Garfield in 99 Homes with Michael Shannon
Michael Shannon in Knives Out

Just like that, we’re already 1/12 the way through 2019. I’m back at it again with my (yearly) most anticipated movies list, and hopefully it’s the last list of its kind that you’ll have to read this year. Last year I listed Black PantherWidowsLove, Simon, Incredibles 2 and Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again in my top 5. One is now a Best Picture contender, and the rest didn’t disappoint either.

There were also a few movies that made my list for 2018 that were pushed back to 2019. I’ve been waiting for them for so long now that they didn’t quite make the cut for this year:

The Nightingale (TBA) – From Babadook director Jennifer Kent.
Under the Silver Lake (April 19) – David Robert Mitchell’s movie starring Andrew Garfield.
Captive State (March 29) – A new sci-fi film from Rupert Wyatt.

What movies will surprise this year? And which ones will just be “meh”? Time will tell.

(Editor’s note: The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part would have made my top 10 if it didn’t take me so long to write this list. Check it out! It’s awesome.)

Movies I can’t wait to see in 2019:

knivesout

1. Knives Out (Nov 27)
Director: Rian Johnson
Cast: Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Lakeith Stanfield, Michael Shannon, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette and more
Since it was announced at the Toronto Film Festival in September, this mystery project has been at the top of my list. With each new cast addition, it’s clear that Rian Johnson’s self-penned script is attracting some of the best talent around. I personally was a big fan of Johnson’s foray into the Jedi galaxy, but hopefully this one won’t be as divisive as Episode VIII. Lionsgate releases this November.

2. Avengers: Endgame (April 26)
Directors: Joe and Anthony Russo
Cast: All your favorite Marvel heroes that survived The Snap
This one is likely at the top of most lists for 2019, but the way that the Russo Brothers set up this (very literal) Endgame in Infinity War has left most of America on the edge of their seats. The trailers have done a great job of building the hype for the movie so far, but have left most of the plot details under wraps. I can’t wait to be surprised in April.

3. Spider-Man: Far From Home (July 5)
Director: Jon Watts
Cast: Tom Holland, Zendaya, Marisa Tomei and Jake Gyllenhaal
Spider-Man: EuroTrip! Even though most screamed “too soon” when we got our third Peter Parker with Spider-Man: Homecoming in 2017, Holland had a fresh take to the character and real chemistry with the rest of his castmate. Hopefully the (returning) Jon Watts sticks to the Hughesian formula that made Homecoming so wonderful. I have always had a special place in my heart for the Spider-Man movies, and this one looks like it won’t be an exception.

4. Annabelle 3 (July 3)
Director: Gary Dauberman
Cast: Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga return to the franchise
Not much is known yet about the third Annabelle film, but Annabelle: Creation is one of my favorite horror movies of the past few years. With Wilson and Farmiga returning (and It and The Conjuring Universe scribe Dauberman in the director’s chair), all the right elements should be in place for a great threequel.

5. Us (March 22)
Director: Jordan Peele
Cast: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke and Elisabeth Moss
I’ve witnessed a lot of terrified crowds in theaters with the trailer recently, and it looks like Peele may be going full-on horror with this new nightmare. The stakes are high after Get Out, but I can’t wait see what twists are in store with Us.

6. Star Wars: Episode IX (Dec 20)
Director: J.J. Abrams returns
Cast: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Oscar Isaac
It’s a Star Wars movie that wraps up the Skywalker saga (I’m pretty sure). This one’s self-explanatory.

7. The Irishman (TBA on Netflix)
Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci and a lot of others
Scorsese has been developing this movie for years, and we will finally get a chance to see how creepy a de-aged De Niro and Pacino look this fall (look for it in October).

8. The Laundromat (TBA on Netflix)
Director: Steven Soderbergh
Cast: Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, Antonio Banderas and more
This one is Soderbergh’s Panama Papers movie, and with The Irishman also hitting theaters this year, Netflix should have a long (and exciting) awards season ahead of them.

9. Triple Frontier (March 15 on Netflix)
Director: J.C. Chandor
Cast: Ben Affleck, Charlie Hunnam, Pedro Pascal, Oscar Isaac and Garrett Hedlund
Chandor’s A Most Violent Year is one of the most underrated movies of recent memory, and with a staked cast (and a slick trailer) I couldn’t resist.

10. How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (Feb 22)
Director: Dean DeBlois
Voice cast: Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Gerard Butler, Kit Harington and Cate Blanchett
I have a soft spot for the How to Train Your Dragon movies, and though I’m sad to see the trilogy come to a (supposed) end, you can catch me at the theater next weekend getting chills to Test Drive.

11. Captain Marvel (March 8) – It’s Her time.
12. The Lion King (July 19) – This could go either way, but Beyoncé and Donald Glover though!
13. It: Chapter Two (Sept 6) – A new all-star adult ensemble cast brings more weight (and expectations) to the second half of It.
14. The Curse of La Llorona (April 19) – A new horror movie from The Conjuring producers; are we sure it’s not part of The Conjuring Universe?
15. The Rhythm Section (Nov 22) – I’m excited to see what director Reed Morano (who won an Emmy for The Handmaid’s Tale) does with this.

16. Godzilla: King of the Monsters (May 31) – A new cast of characters (and monsters) for the leadup to Godzilla vs. Kong in 2020.
17. Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (July 26) – Because why not (but I still need to watch The Hateful Eight).
18. Henry Golding movies Last Christmas (Nov 15) & Monsoon (TBA) – Another romcom and a dramatic turn for the Crazy Rich Asians breakout.
19. Missing Link (April 12) – Laika’s news film so yeah.
20. Midsommar (Aug 9) – Hereditary‘s Ari Aster and A24 are back to creep you out.

21. Toy Story 4 (June 21) – This is only so low on my list because the ending of the third one was too perfect. Hoping for the best.
22. The Woman in the Window (Oct 4) – Joe Wright’s new movie with Amy Adams and Julianne Moore!
23. The Kitchen (Sept 20) – Like Widows, but with Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish and Elisabeth Moss.
24. Midway (Nov 8) – A stacked cast takes on the famous WWII battle.
25. Five Feet Apart (March 22) – Cole Sprouse and Haley Lu Richardson (from one of my favorites, The Edge of Seventeen) take on a YA romance and I’m so there.

(26.) Probably delayed until 2020: Chaos Walking (I guess Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley have busy schedules)

Honorable Mentions: Mister Rogers biopic A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (Nov 22), Vox Lux but make it good Teen Spirit (April 5), Regina Hall and Black-ish’s Marsai Martin body swap Little (April 12), long-delayed X-Men horror movie The New Mutants (Aug 2), Sundance sensation Late Night (TBA on Amazon Prime), Netflix King Noah Centineo’s new romcom The Perfect Date (TBA on Netflix) and A24’s Sundance hit Native Son (TBA on HBO)

Cheers to some great films in 2019! Stay tuned to this space for my list of TV shows I can’t wait to watch in 2019 (editor’s note: check out the list here).

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My Most Anticipated Movies of 2018

Ryan Gosling in The United States of Leland with Don Cheadle
Don Cheadle in Captain America: Civil War with Chadwick Boseman
Chadwick Boseman in Black Panther

Happy 2018! In case you haven’t read enough listicles about movies coming out in the next 12 months, I decided to make my own again this year. Last year I listed Call Me By Your NameThe Last JediDunkirk, Annihilation and Mute in my top 5. Three of those movies will probably make my favorite movies of the year list, and the other two were delayed until this year (both are now releasing Feb 23 – Annihilation in theaters and Mute on Netflix).

Other movies so cruelly delayed until 2018 that made previous lists include:

The Cloverfield Paradox (out now on Netflix) – launched during the Big Game last night
Under the Silver Lake
(TBA 2018)
Lean on Pete (March 30)
Billionaire Boys Club (TBA 2018) – made 2016 & 2017 lists, now giving up on it

There’s so many great movies coming out this year that Ryan Gosling showing us his best Neil Armstrong in Damien Chazelle’s new movie (sans jazz soundtrack) didn’t even crack my top 10. Without further ado…

Most anticipated movies:

black-panther-trailer

1. Black Panther (Feb 16)
Director: Ryan Coogler
Cast: Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o and more
I can’t wait to see Ryan Coogler’s MCU entry, and Wakanda couldn’t look any cooler from the previews. And that soundtrack though.

2. Widows (Nov 16)
Director: Steve McQueen
Cast: Viola Davis, Elizabeth Debicki, Michelle Rodriguez and Cynthia Erivo
Steve McQueen’s followup to 12 Years a Slave has a stacked cast and features these four ladies finishing a heist that their late husbands couldn’t pull off. Also, it’s written by Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl).

3. Love, Simon (March 16)
Director: Greg Berlanti
Cast: Nick Robinson, Katherine Langford, Josh Duhamel and Jennifer Garner
A coming-of-age story featuring a high schooler struggling to come out and a mysterious online crush. I’m a sucker for a high school dramedy and this trailer gives me chills every time.

4. Incredibles 2 (June 15)
Director: Brad Bird
Voice cast: Holly Hunter, Craig T. Nelson, Samuel L. Jackson and Catherine Keener
14 years later we get the Pixar sequel we asked for. I’ll be there opening night.

5. Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (July 20)
Director: Ol Parker
Cast: Amanda Seyfried, Lily James, Colin Firth, Pierce Brosnan, Stellan Skarsgard and the whole gang (and Meryl Streep?)
Does this look like a mess? Maybe. Part prequel, part sequel, all fun.

20sicario2-trailer1-master768

6. Sicario 2: Soldado (June 29)
7. The Meg (Aug 10)
8. Boy Erased (Sept 28)
9. Crazy Rich Asians (Aug 17)
10. Avengers: Infinity War (May 4)

ryanfirstman

11. First Man (Oct 12)
12. A Wrinkle in Time (March 9)
13. Bad Times at the El Royale (Oct 5)
14. Solo: A Star Wars Story (May 25)
15. Ready Player One (March 30)

hereditary

16. This year in horror: Hereditary (June 8) and The Nightingale (Aug 10)
17. Ocean’s 8 (June 8)
18. Captive State (Aug 17)
19. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (Dec 14)
20. Fahrenheit 451 (TBA Spring 2018 on HBO)

More movies that didn’t quite make the cut: Thoroughbreds (March 9), Strangers: Prey at Night (March 9), A Quiet Place (April 6), Tully (April 20)Deadpool 2 (May 18), Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (June 22), Venom (Oct 5), Halloween (Oct 19)Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 (Nov 21), Mary Poppins Returns (Dec 25), Eighth Grade (TBA) and Life Itself (TBA).

As a bonus in the era of peak TV, I thought it would be fun and self-serving to preview premiering (and returning) television in 2018 as well.

Most anticipated TV:

the-handmaids-tale-season-2-hulu-funeral

1. The Handmaid’s Tale season 2 (April 25 on Hulu)
2. The Americans final season (March 28 on FX)
3. Sharp Objects (Summer on HBO)
4. A Series of Unfortunate Events season 2 (March 30 on Netflix)
5. House of Cards final season (Netflix)
6. Atlanta robbin’ season (March 1 on FX)
7. Jessica Jones season 2 (March 8 on Netflix)
8. Maniac (Netflix)

Other TV shows that I’ll definitely be watching this year include (in no order): Here and Now (Feb 11 on HBO), Rise (March 13 on ABC), Pose (FX)The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Netflix), Castle Rock (Hulu), Bye Bye Birdie Live! (NBC), Dear White People season 2 (Netflix), Blumhouse Anthology Series (Hulu)Too Old to Die Young (Amazon), Mindhunter season 2 (Netflix) and Cloak & Dagger (June 7 on Freeform). See you in 2019, Game of Thrones.

If you’ve made it this far, thank you. Cheers to some great content in 2018!

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My Most Anticipated Movies of 2017

Ryan Gosling in The Big Short with Steve Carell
Steve Carell in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy with Will Ferrell
Will Ferrell in Blades of Glory with Will Arnett
Will Arnett in The Lego Batman Movie
(I didn’t take the easy way out)

In case you haven’t noticed, it’s 2017. Welcome to my yearly attempt to rank my excitement for the next year in movies. Last year I was anticipating Midnight Special, Passengers, Arrival (formerly known as Story of Your Life), La La Land and Kubo and the Two Strings. Let’s just say that all five of those movies except for one made the list of my favorite 2016 movies.

This year we’re only blessed with one Ryan Gosling movie. He’s also in Terrence Malick’s Song to Song, but hey he may get cut out. Welcome to The Lego Batman Movie memorial list, which I saw Friday and thought it skewered superhero movies better than Deadpool. And yeah I guess I’ll see The Lego Ninjago Movie this year, too.

Here are the 41 movies I’m looking forward to the most in 2017 (I had to cut it off somewhere).

cmbyn

1. Call Me By Your Name – TBA 2017
Dir. Luca Guadagnio, Starring Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet
You couldn’t escape the Sundance buzz that this movie had in January. Can’t wait to read the book and for all the sexual tension!

2. Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Dec. 15
Dir. Rian Johnson, Starring Daisy Ridley and John Boyega
Now that the groundwork for the new trilogy/universe has been laid, I’m dying to see what the characters (both old and new) will do next.

3. Dunkirk – July 21
Dir. Christopher Nolan, Starring Cillian Murphy and Tom Hardy
Have you seen the trailer???

4. Annihilation – TBA 2017
Dir. Alex Garland, Starring Natalie Portman and Jennifer Jason Leigh
Ex Machina was one of the best movies of 2015 so I’m there for anything Garland directs.

5. Mute – TBA 2017
Dir. Duncan Jones, Starring Justin Theroux and Paul Rudd
I didn’t see Duncan Jones’ Warcraft and still haven’t seen Source Code, but Moon! C’mon.

6. Untitled Cloverfield (God Particle) – Oct. 27
7. Baby Driver – Aug. 11

2049

8. Blade Runner 2049 – Oct. 6 (Only because I only like and don’t love the original)
9. Wonder Woman – June 2 (My most anticipated superhero movie this year)
10. Spider-Man: Homecoming – July 7
11. Under the Silver Lake – TBA 2017
12. Molly’s Game – TBA 2017 (Aaron Sorkin’s directorial debut, which I’m in the mood for since I’m currently binging The West Wing)
13. Beauty and the Beast – March 17
14. The Book of Henry – June 16
15. War for the Planet of the Apes – July 14
16. Coco – Nov. 22 (Pixar’s next original)
17. Logan Lucky – Oct. 13
18. The Glass Castle – TBA 2017
19. The Snowman – Oct. 13
20. Logan – March 3
21. Wonderstruck – TBA 2017
22. Untitled Paul Thomas Anderson – TBA 2017
23. The Current War – TBA 2017
24. Billionaire Boys Club – TBA 2017
25. Battle of the Sexes – TBA 2017
26. The Circle – April 28 (The trailer worries me that the filmmakers tried to turn it into a thriller, but I’m optimistic)
27. Thor: Ragnarok – Nov. 3
28. Lady Bird – TBA 2017
29. Kong: Skull Island – March 10 (I’m curious to see where they go with this one)
30. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – July 21
31. Mother! – Oct. 13 (The movie that gifted us this couple)
32. Lean on Pete – TBA 2017
33. Wind River – TBA 2017 (Taylor Sheridan’s directorial debut)
34. Alien: Covenant – May 19
35. Three Billboards Outside Of Ebbing, Missouri – TBA 2017
36. The Greatest Showman – Dec. 25
37. Rock That Body – June 16
38. Bright – TBA 2017
39. Jumanji – Dec. 22 (What a wonderfully random cast)
40. The Big Sick – TBA 2017
41. City of Ghosts – TBA 2017 (The next doc from the director of Cartel Land)

Interestingly enough, Billionaire Boys Club and The Circle also made my list last year. Yay for release date pushes!

I can’t wait to realistically lower my expectations for each of these movies! Cheers to 2017.

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My Favorite 2016 Things

Ryan Gosling in The Nice Guys and La La Land
(that was easy)

In 2016 we were blessed with not one but two Ryan Gosling movies: The Nice Guys, which opened with some critical buzz and then fizzled earlier this year, and La La Land, which continues to be the frontrunner for Best Picture. Shane Black’s latest movie was fun, but it will be the throwback musical that will bless us with Gosling red carpet appearances well into the new year. So to recap the crazy last 12 months (which wasn’t that bad, c’mon internet), below are some of my favorite things from 2016.

gosling_theniceguys

>>> Movies

I saw a total of 54 movies released in 2016 (it will be 55 after I see Hidden Figures tonight). I loved:

La La Land – I’ve seen this wonderful movie twice in theaters, which features some of the most memorable sequences of the year, including the moving Audition scene. And yes Gosling actually plays the piano.
Zootopia – How could you not enjoy this (surprisingly deep) movie?
The Edge of Seventeen – I hate the phrase, but it’s honestly an instant classic.
Midnight Special – I saw this movie forever ago, but I felt like I had a religious experience watching it at the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin last March.
O.J.: Made in America – This 7-hour documentary is required viewing, and strangely the most interesting parts are the moments outside the trial.
Lion – I dare you to not get emotional at the end of this movie.
Kubo and the Two Strings – Laika does it again! The studio might now have a stronger track record than Pixar.
10 Cloverfield Lane – Sci-fi at its best, and though it’s technically a “sidequel” to Cloverfield, it really works on its own.

I know, I know, I still need to see: 20th Century Women, Silence, American Honey, Hell or High Water, Sully, Hacksaw Ridge, Everybody Wants Some!!, LovingCaptain Fantastic, Nocturnal Animals, FencesToni Erdmann and A Monster Calls (yikes).

>>> Television

I watched a total of 42 TV shows on the air and web this year, which awful if you consider that there were a record of 455 scripted shows in 2016. My favorites were (in no particular order):

Atlanta – One of the most original and refreshing shows on TV (if not the most).
The People Vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
– The writing and performances are fantastic. It’s unlikely they’ll be able to top this in the next installment of the anthology.
Black Mirror – Aside from the Shut Up and Dance episode, I would rewatch every episode from season (series?) 3 right now.
Saturday Night Live – The show is having a banner year, let’s see if they can continue it post-election.
Search Party – The Since U Been Gone candlelight vigil is one of the best scenes of the year.
BoJack Horseman – Yeah Fish Out of Water is a standout, but season 3 was great as a whole this year. And also even more depressing.
Grease: Live
– Some of the most fun I’ve had watching TV this year. Hairspray Live! tried to replicate its tricks, but didn’t come close in the seamless execution.
Game of Thrones
– The show has caught up to the books, but it’s honestly better than ever. The stakes are extermely high for season 7.

“But what about…”
In 2017 I promise to watch Black-ish, Difficult People, Fargo, The Carmichael Show and Insecure.

And here are a few of my favorite performances from 2016 (in no particular order):

Alden Ehrenreich in Hail, Caesar!
Molly Shannon in Other People
Emma Stone in La La Land
Andre Holland in Moonlight
Hailee Steinfeld in The Edge of Seventeen
Bryce Dallas Howard in Black Mirror
John Early in Search Party
Sarah Paulson in The People Vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Zazie Beetz in Atlanta
Andrea Navedo in Jane the Virgin
Amy Adams in Arrival
Sunny Pawar in Lion
Lena Headey in Game of Thrones
Keri Russell in The Americans
Shakira in Zootopia
Ryan Gosling in The Nice Guys (obviously)

>>> Music

In case you made it this far, I also made a 2016 playlist featuring my favorite songs from the past year (shamless self-promo!)

Thanks for reading and cheers to more great movies, television and music in 2017!

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My Most Anticipated Movies of 2016

Ryan Gosling in Gangster Squad with Emma Stone
Emma Stone in The Amazing Spider-Man with Andrew Garfield
Andrew Garfield in 99 Homes with Michael Shannon
Michael Shannon in Midnight Special

Happy 2016! Welcome to my yearly attempt predicting the highlights of the next 12 months in movies. Last year I was really excited about Avengers: Age of Ultron, Pitch Perfect 2 and Tomorrowland, and I’ve already completely forgotten about those movies (here’s my full list from last year). I was also looking forward to Dark Places, a movie I still haven’t bothered to see.

So this year I tried to do something a little different with my list. Yes, sequels, franchises and universe-building movies still made the cut, but I chose highlight wholly original movies in my top 5. (Full disclosure: I think my #3 pick is actually based on a short story, so I’m making one exception.) Regardless, 2016 looks like a promising year for original stories in film.

So here we go, my Most Anticipated Movies of Two Thousand Sixteen. Drumroll please…

jeff-nichols-directing

1. Midnight Special – March 18
Dir. Jeff Nichols (Mud, Take Shelter)
Stars Adam Driver, Kirsten Dunst, Joel Edgerton, Michael Shannon

BBFs Jeff Nichols and Michael Shannon reunite for the fourth time in this mysterious movie about a kid with special powers. Apparently Nichols has been trying to make this movie for a while, and I’m excited to see what he does with a big budget.

2. Passengers – Dec 21
Dir. Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game, one of my favorite movies of 2014)
Stars Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt, Michael Sheen

Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt fall in love in space and also get paid the same amount of money while doing it. Also anticipated: the press tour for this movie.

3. Story of Your Life – TBA 2016
Dir. Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners, Sicario, Enemy)
Stars Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Michael Stuhlbarg

Villeneuve is one of the most interesting directors working today, so naturally he’s managed to attract a great cast for and his next movie. It looks like this one’s about a linguist who becomes useful during an alien invasion. I’m guessing that traumatic things follow. (Also I think I have a thing for alien movies?)

lalaland

4. La La Land – July 15
Dir. Damien Chazelle (Whiplash)
Stars Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, J.K. Simmons

I would see this movie based solely on the image above. This blog’s namesake and Emma Stone singing and dancing in Hollywood? I’m there!

5. Kubo and the Two Strings – Aug 19
Dir. Travis Knight (President & CEO of Laika, directorial debut)
Voices of Rooney Mara, Charlize Theron, Ralph Fiennes

Laika has created some of the most original animated films of the past few years (Coraline, The Boxtrolls, and in particular, ParaNorman), so I can’t wait to see what world they create next. Check out the visually-arresting teaser here.

6. Captain America: Civil War – May 6

7. Suicide Squad – Aug 5

8. HBO’s Looking Special – TBA 2016
(I’m cheating a little here but I can’t wait. Richie!)

9. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – Dec 16

10. Moana – Nov 23

11. Silence – TBA 2016
(Scorsese/Garfield/Driver/Neeson!)

12. Bourne 5 – July 29

13. The Girl on the Train – Oct 7

14. The Conjuring 2 – June 10

15. X-Men: Apocalypse – May 27

16. Finding Dory – June 17

17. Star Trek Beyond – July 22

18. The Circle – TBA 2016
(Based on the super popular book)

19. Hail Caesar! – Feb 5

20. Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising – May 20

21. Doctor Strange – Nov 4

22. High-Rise – TBA 2016

23. Colossal – TBA 2016
(A woman has a mental breakdown during a Gozilla-like attack)

24. Ghostbusters – July 15

25. War Machine – TBA 2016
(Netflix’s latest feature)

26. A Monster Calls – Oct 14

27. Deepwater Horizon – Sept 30
(Kurt Russell, Dylan O’Brien and Gina Rodriguez in a movie about the 2010 oil spill)

28. The Witch – Feb 19

29. The Lobster – March 11

30. The Neon Demon – TBA 2016

31. 10 Cloverfield Lane – March 11

32. The Nice Guys – May 20
(Welcome back, Ryan!)

Others that didn’t quite make the cut: The Invitation, Equals, Billionaire Boys Club, Top Secret Untitled Lonely Island MovieFantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, The BFGNocturnal AnimalsBatman v Superman: Dawn of JusticeThe Light Between OceansBilly Lynn’s Long Halftime WalkArms and the DudesDeadpool and Kung Fu Panda 3

Thanks for getting this far. Can’t wait to look back at this list next year and regret everything.

Cheers to 2016!

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Like a Virgin

Ryan Gosling in The Big Short with Finn Wittrock
Finn Wittrock in American Horror Story: Hotel with Wes Bentley
Wes Bentley in We Are Your Friends with Zac Efron
Zac Efron in The Lucky One with Taylor Schilling
Taylor Schilling in Orange is the New Black with Diane Guerrero
Diane Guerrero in Jane the Virgin

When people ask me what my favorite TV shows are, I usually freeze. Not because I don’t want to discuss my shows, but mostly because there’s just so much good TV out there at the moment. This is the age of Peak TV after all.

My usual go-to answers are Game of Thrones (the “duh” pick), Teen Wolf (my “guilty pleasure” pick) and How to Get Away with Murder (my “Shondaland” pick). But the current show that has yet to let me down and still pumps out 22 episodes a year is Jane the Virgin.

Jane the Virgin features some of the most grounded characters on TV at the moment, including Jane (a wonderful Gina Rodriguez in a Golden Globe-winning role), who is accidentally artificially inseminated with her childhood crush’s sperm in Chapter One, despite being a 23-year-old virgin. Other characters who populate Jane’s telenovela universe include the childhood crush himself, Rafael (played by former soap actor and real-life dad Justin Baldoni) and my personal favorite, Jane’s mom Xo (a charming Andrea Navedo). The characters remain grounded and relatable, which is a lot considering the pilot’s high-concept setup and the fact that two separate episodes in season 2 featured Kesha (sans dollar sign) as a next-door neighbor and a Britney Spears cameo, all while balancing storylines about Jane’s breastfeeding fears.

JaneTheVirgin-102-ChapterTwo-CW-Stereo_a2ab5854_CWtv_720x400

Sure, the show has its flaws (I’m not sure how much longer they can drag out Jane’s love triangle with Rafael and her on-again, off-again boyfriend Michael), but I usually don’t care because I love this show and the characters so damn much. P.S. just like Jane’s (*kinda spoiler*) dad Rogelio, I am #TeamMichael.

So yes, my favorite TV show right now is Jane the Virgin. And you don’t have an excuse to not watch it anymore because season 1 is now streaming on Netflix.

I’m mostly #TeamMichael, but always #TeamJane.

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