This week is understandably pretty slow so a couple of the Channel Surfing TV picks are actually movies. But they are making their world premiere this Thursday on streaming services so it will be a nice Christmas present to watch these highly anticipated films. Diana Prince takes on the 80s and a pair of supervillains in Wonder Woman 1984. Pixar tackles some major philosophical questions about life in Soul. Finally, gear up for some espionage ridiculousness in Fast & Furious Spy Racers: Sahara.
Retro Superhero Fun
The current pandemic has caused WarnerMedia brands to make unprecedented moves to adapt to the current situation. Last summer, DC Comics cut its ties with Diamond Distributors and found different outlets to get their products into the Direct Market. More recently, it was announced that the upcoming film, Wonder Woman 1984, would have a simultaneous release in both cinemas and on their streaming platform, HBO Max. A few weeks later, the company shared that their entire 2021 theatrical slate would follow the same model.
The Wonder Woman sequel moves from WWI to the Cold War and features the titular heroine and her previous love, Steve Trevor, confronting new threats in the form of Maxwell Lord and Cheetah. Fresh from a heartbreaking season finale of The Mandalorian, Pedro Pascal will play Lord. Fans can finally watch the delayed summer blockbuster this Christmas Day on HBO Max.
Finding Your Soul
Like our first pick, Soul was originally scheduled for a theatrical release but was switched to debut on a streaming service. The Pixar animated feature will also be available on Christmas Day on Disney+ and unlike Mulan, there will be no additional fee to access it.
The story follows a junior high music teacher who always wanted to be a jazz performer. Before he can take advantage of a big opportunity to achieve his dream, he has an accident and his soul becomes trapped in the afterlife. Now he must be reunited with his physical body before his death becomes permanent.
Pixar has an excellent track record with movies and Soul should be no different. Throw in a score from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross and jazz songs written by Jon Batiste and catching this film is no brainer. For an added bonus, the animated short, “Burrow”, which would have run before Soul in theaters, also drops on Thursday.
Fast & Furious Jr.
How many people were disappointed the next movie in the Fast & the Furious franchise was rescheduled? <raises hand> Outside of Marvel, it is my favorite cinematic universe and I’ll have to wait until next year to see the trouble John Cena conjures up as Dominic Toretto’s brother. At least there’s Fast & Furious Spy Racers: Sahara to scratch that itch until then.
Though it’s a children’s cartoon and suffers from the corny drawbacks you would expect, Spy Racers still contains many of the enjoyable aspects of the franchise: the focus on family, a killer soundtrack, and absolutely ludicrous action sequences. A Vin Diesel voiced Dom even shows up in some episodes so it wouldn’t be a stretch to think he will this season as well. Fast & Furious Spy Racers: Sahara premieres this Saturday, December 26, on Netflix.
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