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AV Brew: Wine, Popcorn & Stream November Edition

Here are my picks for what to watch!

Usually, I can pull a theme together or find a thread that pulls everything I watched together. This month I cannot condense all of what I watched into one topic. I simply watched what was suggested by the streaming services and was quite happy with their suggestions.

Amazon Prime

What The Constitution Means To Me

Comedian Heidi Schreck presents a play based on her history in Constitution Debate clubs in her teens. She uses the constitution as a starting point to discuss race, abortion, domestic violence as it relates to her life and the document. The play ends in a debate about abolishing the constitution.

Before I get into my review, someone call Broadway and tell them they need to do more releases such as this. Besides creating an additional stream of income; it makes Broadway plays accessible to a broader audience. I genuinely had no idea this play was being produced.

My major in college was history with a focus on constitutional law, I found this play to be well presented and engaging. The closing debate is fascinating and allows the viewer to come to their own conclusion on the subject. I learned so much that I might watch it again to dig more into the cases she brings up.

The ABC Murders

How has this been on Amazon Prime since 2019 and I didn’t know about it. The BBC produced a loose adaptation of Agatha Christie’s 1936 novel that aired in England in late 2018. John Malkovich plays an older Hercule Poirot, as he is trying to find a murderer who is selecting victims based on his past.  The audience has a suspect so the show is about the characters discovering and tracking down the killer.

As of this writing I have not watched the final episode because I don’t want this to end. It’s breathtaking cinematography is magnificent, capturing the scenery and the brutality of each killing beautifully . The details and care the BBC put into this project is all on the screen. From Malkvoich’s take on Poirot and the mental health of the murderer to the make up that made Rupert Grint unrecognizable. This 3 hours is well worth your time.


The Queen’s Gambit

Soon after its release the internet was abuzz with praise for The Queen’s Gambit and it deserves every keystroke.

Based the book by Walter Tevis, The Queen’s Gambit the latest limited series from Netflix, is a drama about an orphaned chess prodigy in the 60s. It’s the coming of age story where the prodigy meets and fights their demons.

I started watching this series because the cover photo of  Anya Taylor-Joy as Beth Harmon is captivating. The first episode felt slow to me but it was all necessary back story to understand our protagonist.  I have nothing but praise for this 8-episode series. From the set design to the costumes to the acting, I felt transported back to the 1960s.  Even if you don’t know anything about chess, like me, you will enjoy this show. As of the writing of this article, over a month after its release The Queen’s Gambit is still in the top 10 on Netflix. Currently, this is at the top of my recommendation list.

Apple TV

I recently discovered that I have an Apple TV subscription.  I like how the app is organized on my iPad  and their offerings are varied. There is truly something for anybody. If I had one thing to complain about is that there isn’t an app for my FireTV and trying to find the stable mirroring app has so far been unsuccessful.

Defending Jacob

Based on a novel by Mark Bomback Defending Jacob is a crime drama: did the Assistant DAs son murder is classmate?

I’m 3 episodes into this 8 part series and am on the edge of my seat. The murder is discovered at the start of the series and so far the motives of all the suspects are solid. Chris Evans and Michelle Dockery are giving powerhouse performances as the parents of Jaeden Martell’s Jacob. Plus, we get an unexpected cameo from J.K. Simmons! The acting in this show is astounding. After years of seeing Evans as Captain America, seeing him in this role is refreshing. Definite recommendation if you have access to the platform

Platform: The Film Detective

The Film Detective is a free streaming platform available on FireTV, Roku and Apple TV that specializes in vintage films that are in the public domain and restored by the service. There are suppose to be ads but I have yet to come across one. It’s a good app loaded with films you may not know existed.

A Life at Stake

An out of work architect, Edward Shaw, is contracted by Doris Hilman and her husband to design and build new homes. Doris begins an affair with Edward but the couple are actually plotting to kill him for insurance money. The amount of craziness in this film is off the chain. Without spoiling it, I have one thing to say: wifey you are not supposed to catch feelings for the victim.

The main reason I wanted to talk about this film is its star.  Depending on how old you are, when you hear the name Dame Angela Lansbury one of the following images may pop into your mind:

But Lansburry in 1954 at the age of 29 was sexy as hell. I was not ready:

Is this some amazing undiscovered classic? No, however it’s good film noir and more than worth the hour and a half to watch Lansbury vamp it up. 

Well that is what I watched in November. Any new shows or movies I should be on the look out for? Let me know in the comments!

About Simply Sherri (59 Articles)
Poet, writer, movie nerd and historian.
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