We recommend: The best new movies and TV
Kathal: A Jackfruit Mystery: This comedy drama starring Sanya Malhotra, Rajpal Yadav, and Vijay Raaz is a wild goose chase—for jackfruits of all things—and based on true events. This quirky satire follows an MLA whose prized jackfruits (aka Kathals) go missing, and a young police officer who is adamant to solve this bizarre case to prove herself.
Reviews are good. Indian Express writes: “To Kathal’s credit, it never gets preachy or screechy as most movies tend to do while talking about serious problems.” Hindustan Times says Sanya Malhotra is at her comic best and that the movie is “quirky yet subtle satire on the ambiguous position the police force is put into, while serving the rich and mighty. ” Our take: We love the comedy pairing of the legends, Rajpal Yadav and Vijay Raaz in the film, and it is a refreshing take on “true events”. The movie premiered on Friday on Netflix.
Working: What We Do All Day: This documentary series focuses on the culture of work and employment in the US. It features Former US president Barack Obama documenting the journey of a diverse set of Americans, and their changing relationship with work and the struggles they face in these unprecedented times.
The show has received mixed reviews. Variety points out that Obama’s star power “overshadows the worthwhile message of the docuseries”. Wall Street Journal says the task taken on by Obama is impossible to accomplish and the show is “a lot of work”. Our take: We’re tuning in to what the Former President has to say about the state of work just for his charming personality. The series is now available on Netflix.
High Desert: This eight-episode comedy series follows a fifty-something Peggy—played by Oscar-winning actress Patricia Arquette—who is an addict turned private investigator. As random and offbeat as this sounds, Peggy tries to crack a case involving a stolen Picasso, a missing woman, a charlatan shaman, breast implants, and a talking parrot.
The reviews are mixed but are mostly good. Hollywood Reporter calls it a “likably offbeat comic mystery” elaborating that, “High Desert’s early aimlessness evolves by midseason into a likable shagginess, warmed by a surprising amount of heart.” OTOH The Guardian praises Arquette but writes “High Desert is very much a case of style over substance” and that it “is many things but it is not a bingewatch.” Our take: We love Patricia Arquette, and this seems to be the perfect way to see more of her while we wait for the second season of ‘Severance’. The first three episodes aired on Apple TV+ on Wednesday.
Modern Love Chennai: Here’s a six episode anthology adapted from the famous ‘Modern Love’ franchise with stories based in Chennai. The series has a group of lauded creators—Thiagarajan Kumararaja of ‘Super Deluxe’ fame as creative producer and a soundtrack featuring the work of Ilaiyaraaja and Yuvan Shankar Raja. The love stories involve people from social and economic strata in an attempt to reflect the cultural amalgamation represented in the culture of Chennai.
The anthology has gotten good reviews overall. The Indian Express says that the series leaves you “wanting for more” and The Hindu notes that “every segment of this anthology works wonders. Our take: This series has been a wonderful way to get a sense of a city’s pulse through the stories of its people. We can’t wait to see how Chennai’s romantics stack up against the cities covered by the series so far. The series was released on Thursday on Amazon Prime.
Fast X: The ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise has now crossed the 20th year mark. The 10th instalment ‘Fast X’ sees ‘Aquaman’ star Jason Momoa as the main villain, who plays Dante—a mysterious and explosive criminal mastermind who is out to get revenge on and destroy Dominic Toretto’s (Vin Diesel) family.
Reviews are interesting. BBC Culture says: “If nothing else, this particular Fast and Furious is undoubtedly one of the fastest and most furious of them all.” USA Today found it “both fun and frustrating” and The Guardian concludes: “Fast X has enough joyful self-awareness that resistance becomes futile. At a certain point, it feels better to give in and smile.” Our take: This franchise has been going on so long we’ve lost track of the finer details beyond Vin Diesel, fast cars, and family. For a couple of hours of fun, that’s plenty. Catch it in the theatres today.
Here’s a new chapter…
She Said: This investigative journalism movie is about the origins of the #MeToo movement which rocked Hollywood and entertainment industries around the world in 2017. It is based on the book of the same name by New York Times journalists Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey and their detailed investigation into Harvey Weinstein. This 2022 movie is now available to watch on Amazon Prime.