We are sure, as the country opens up more & more, that between all your summertime fun you are itching to do that there will be time for entertainment via HBO. You wouldn’t be here reading this if you weren’t interested, right? Well, we hope the channel or the app, whichever you prefer, has something to your liking. This post helps you find what is available on HBO & HBO Max. So, get out of the heat, wind down a fun day and enjoy. Here is what is of note for July 2021.
A few quick points:
A perfect summer series – THE WHITE LOTUS
The return of the Tune Squad!
A six-part, half-hour documentary series with Ronan Farrow
New HBO Latino content
New HBO Saturday Night Movies
Original Series: It is a limited six-episode run, but we’ll take THE WHITE LOTUS and its trip to Maui. The show, from Mike White of HBO’s ENLIGHTENED, takes us to an exclusive Hawaiian resort to mix with the staff and guests. Find it debuting SUNDAY, JULY 11 (9:00-10:00pm). Among the employees at The White Lotus are the fastidious resort manager Armond (Murray Bartlett of LOOKING), who, after a sudden trauma, begins a dramatic downward spiral – and the down-to-earth spa manager, Belinda (Natasha Rothwell of INSECURE) who gets taken on an emotional roller coaster ride by a needy guest. The vacationers include the Mossbacher family – Nicole (Connie Britton of Nashville), a successful type-A exec, who can’t help but treat her family like disobedient employees; her husband, Mark (Steve Zahn of TREME), dealing with both an embarrassing health crisis and a terminal inferiority complex; their teenaged son, Quinn (Fred Hechinger of Eighth Grade), a socially awkward gamer, experiencing the wonder of nature for the very first time; their daughter, Olivia (Sydney Sweeney of EUPHORIA), and her friend, Paula (Brittany O’Grady of Little Voice), sharp-tongued college sophomores who cast a sardonic eye on the lifestyles and belief systems of everyone around them. The handsome, entitled Shane Patton (Jake Lacy of GIRLS) is here with his beautiful bride, Rachel (Alexandra Daddario of TRUE DETECTIVE). Shane and Rachel are in the throes of young love, but as they get to know each other better in this new, intimate environment, clouds of doubt appear – and by the time Shane’s intrusive mother, Kitty (Molly Shannon of DIVORCE) surprises them with an unwelcome visit, their fairytale honeymoon has begun to unravel. And finally, there is Tanya McQuoid (Jennifer Coolidge of 2 Broke Girls), a wealthy, unstable woman, recovering from the death of her mother, traveling alone to the hotel, looking for love and in desperate need of a massage.
Wow, a lot of HBO alums involved. Check the trailer.
–Episode 1: “Arrivals” Debut date: SUNDAY, JULY 11 (9:00-10:00pm ET/PT)
As a new wave of guests arrive at the White Lotus, resort manager Armond (Murray Bartlett) tries to assuage an unreasonable Shane (Jake Lacy) and his easy-going new wife Rachel (Alexandra Daddario), while spa director Belinda (Natasha Rothwell) calms a grieving Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge). Meanwhile, Nicole (Connie Britton) suggests her husband Mark (Steve Zahn) distract himself from a health scare by spending time with their son Quinn (Fred Hechinger), who’s been cast out by his sister Olivia (Sydney Sweeney) and her friend Paula (Brittany O’Grady). Written by Mike White; Directed by Mike White.
A cautiously optimistic Belinda (Natasha Rothwell) walks a fine line with Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge), while Armond (Murray Bartlett) brainstorms ways to deal with Shane (Jake Lacy). After her husband belittles her work, Rachel (Alexandra Daddario) approaches Nicole (Connie Britton) for advice. Paula (Brittany O’Grady) and Olivia (Sydney Sweeney) lose track of their stash, while a revived Mark (Steve Zahn) attempts to connect with Quinn (Fred Hechinger). Written by Mike White; Directed by Mike White.
Stripped of his gadgets, Quinn (Fred Hechinger) reluctantly takes a scuba class with Mark (Steve Zahn), who’s struggling to process revelations regarding his late father. Hoping to reignite the spark with Rachel (Alexandra Daddario), Shane (Jake Lacy) enlists Armond (Murray Bartlett) to help plan a romantic evening. Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge) leans on Belinda (Natasha Rothwell) for support as she scatters her mother’s ashes at sea. Paula (Brittany O’Grady) keeps a secret from a suspicious Olivia (Sydney Sweeney). Written by Mike White; Directed by Mike White.
From the lush resort to the streets of The Big Apple now as we conclude Season Two of BETTY. We can find it picking up on FRIDAY, JULY 02 (11:00-11:30pm) and airing three more episodes.
Kirt (Nina Moran) enlists Shelby (Isabel Palma) on a mission. Honeybear (Moonbear) and Camille (Rachelle Vinberg) have second thoughts. Indigo (Ajani Russell) looks to make a buck by any means. Janay (Dede Lovelace) and Sylvester (Andrew Darnell) are kind of a thing? Written by Crystal Moselle & Rachelle Vinberg; Directed by Crystal Moselle
–Episode 5: “Good Luck With That” Debut date: FRIDAY, JULY 09 (11:00-1:30pm ET/PT)
Everyone’s in their feelings at the squat Halloween party. Camille (Rachelle Vinberg) tries to make amends, Honeybear (Moonbear) acts out, Janay’s (Dede Lovelace) tired of taking it slow, and Indigo’s (Ajani Russell) not having any of it. Come on now, Kirt (Nina Moran) – practice what you preach! Written by Naima Ramos-Chapman; Directed by Crystal Moselle
–Episode 6: “The Let Out”
Debut date: FRIDAY, JULY 16, (11:00-11:30pm ET/PT)
Confessions. Breakthroughs. New beginnings. The party’s over, and it’s time to come home. Written by Sabaah Folayan; Directed by Crystal Moselle
REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHERcontinues FRIDAY, JULY 09 (10:00-11:00pm live ET/tape-delayed PT), with a replay at 12:30am. Taking off three weeks, LAST WEEK TONIGHT WITH JOHN OLIVER returns for the month on SUNDAY, JULY 25 (11:00-11:30pm ET). Wow, really taking off for the 4ththere aren’t we? Perhaps he will be back in his studio when he returns? Recently Oliver has talked about Asian-Americans, the PACE Program and the NYC Mayoral Election. Over with Maher he has interviewed Neil deGrasse Tyson and Quentin Tarantino and discussed topics like cancel culture, Joe Manchin and Derek Chauvin’s sentencing. We give Mr. Maher a brief clip below.
Originals Exclusive to HBO Max: A classic series gets a reboot. I for one never watched the first series but I’m sure there are fans anticipating the return of the GOSSIP GIRL concept. It uploads to HBO Max beginning THURSDAY, JULY 08. Developed by showrunner Joshua Safran, a writer and executive producer on the original series, this extension of the pop culture classic takes us back to the Upper East Side finding a new generation of New York private school teens being introduced to social surveillance nine years after the original blogger’s website went dark. The series is based on the bestselling novels by Cecily von Ziegesar and the original show, developed by Josh Schwartz & Stephanie Savage, which ran from 2007-2012 on The CW. GOSSIP GIRL explores just how much social media — and the landscape of New York itself — has changed in the intervening years. The series stars Jordan Alexander, Eli Brown, Thomas Doherty, Tavi Gevinson, Emily Alyn Lind, Evan Mock, Zion Moreno, Whitney Peak and Savannah Lee Smith.
That same day the Season One finale of GENERA+IONS uploads. On the non-scripted front, the service uploads something called FBOY ISLAND. Three women move to a tropical island where they’re joined by 24 men – 12 self-proclaimed “Nice Guys” looking for love, and 12 self-proclaimed “FBoys,” there to compete for cold, hard cash. The women will navigate the dating pool together with the hope of finding a lasting love connection. By the finale, all will be revealed – who is a Nice Guy, who is an FBoy, and who the women ultimately choose. And to me, this series serves as the perfect example of a show that the letters H, B & O should be nowhere near!!!
There is no confirmed date for that competition series but we do know that THURSDAY, JULY 08 sees the return of Season Two of THE DOG HOUSE: UKand THURSDAY, JULY 01 offers the conclusion of Season Two of FULL BLOOM.
HBO Saturday Night Movies:New movies are finally filling up the Saturday night primetime slot, at least for July. Wind down your day in the sun (or work, if the case may be) with Let Him Go,Judas and the Black Messiah, The Empty Man, Freaky, and Tom & Jerry. Here is a look at each:
Leading us off isLET HIM GO debuting SATURDAY JULY 03 (8:00-9:55pm). Following the death of their son, a retired sheriff and his wife set out to rescue their young grandson from a dangerous family living off the grid. Diane Lane, Kevin Costner, and Lesley Manville star in this gritty drama. Written for the screen and directed by Thomas Bezucha, based in the novel by Larry Watson. The couple must be there for others and themselves and let him go (to a degree) – a hard lesson. The next movie already had a limited debut on HBO Max but returns after its theatrical run to debut on HBO. FindJUDAS AND THE BLACK MESSIAH debuting SATURDAY, JULY 10 (8:00-20:10pm). Daniel Kaluuya won an Oscar for his fiery performance in the searing, fact-based story of Fred Hampton, chairman of the Illinois Black Panther Party, and his betrayal by an FBI informant. Co-starring LaKeith Stanfield and Jesse Plemons. Directed by Shaka King; screenplay by Will Berson & Shaka King, story by Will Berson & Shaka King and Kenny Lucas & Keith Lucas.OnSATURDAY, JULY 17 (8:00-10:15pm)you can witnessTHE EMPTY MAN. In this one, an ex-cop searching for a missing girl suspects that a series of mysterious disappearances in a small Midwestern town may be linked to a supernatural entity. Starring James Badge Dale, Marin Ireland, Stephen Root, Ron Canada, Robert Aramayo, Joel Courtney, Sasha Frolova. Written and directed by David Prior; based on the graphic novel by Cullen Bunn. Since you might not be so familiar with this 2020 film here is its trailer:
The following week, SATURDAY, JULY 24 (8:15-10:50pm) is another blast of horror with FREAKY. A teen who magically swaps bodies with a serial killer finds that she has less than 24 hours before the switch becomes permanent in this entertaining, genre-bending horror-comedy. Vince Vaughn, Kathryn Newton, Katie Finneran, Celeste O’Connor, and Alan Ruck star. Directed by Christopher Landon; written by Michael Kennedy & Christopher Landon. Think of it as Freaky Friday with a thriller twist. The last day of the month offers up the return of the classic cartoon duo TOM & JERRY when that Same-Day Premiere from earlier in the year makes its HBO debut. One of the most beloved rivalries in history is reignited when Jerry moves into NYC’s top hotel on the eve of a big wedding, forcing the event’s planner to hire Tom to get rid of him. Starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Michael Pena, Colin Jost, Rob Delaney and Ken Jeong. Directed by Tim Story; written by Kevin Costello, based on characters created by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera. Find it SATURDAY, JULY 31 (8:00-945pm).
Movies Exclusive to HBO Max: Here is a solid movie that happens not to be a Same-Day Premiere in cinemas. From director Steven Soderbergh comes the new feature film NO SUDDEN MOVE from Warner Bros. Pictures. Set in 1954 Detroit, NO SUDDEN MOVE centers on a group of small-time criminals who are hired to steal what they think is a simple document. When their plan goes horribly wrong, their search for who hired them – and for what ultimate purpose – weaves them through all echelons of the race-torn, rapidly changing city. The film premieres exclusively on HBO Max THURSDAY, JULY 01 in the U.S. The film stars Don Cheadle, Benicio Del Toro, David Harbour, Jon Hamm, Amy Seimetz, Brendan Fraser, Kieran Culkin, Noah Jupe, Craig muMs Grant, Julia Fox, Frankie Shaw, with Ray Liotta and Bill Duke. Soderbergh directed the film from a screenplay written by Ed Solomon and produced by Casey Silver, both of whom he collaborated with on his HBO series MOSAIC.
The Same-Day Premeire for July (debuting in theaters and on HBO Max’ Ad-Free plan) is SPACE JAM: A NEW LEGACY. In 1996 Michael Jordan, Bugs Bunny and his gang gave us Space Jam. Now, in 2021 a new B’baller is called to play and LeBron James takes it to the court, alongside the ageless wascally wabbit. When basketball champion and global icon LeBron James and his youngest son Dom (Cedric Joe) – who dreams of being a video game developer rather than follow his father’s footsteps – find themselves trapped in the Warner Bros. 3000 Entertainment Server-Verse, a virtual space ruled by a rogue A.I. named Al-G Rhythm (Don Cheadle), LeBron must save his son and get them home safely by leading Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Lola Bunny and the whole gang of notoriously undisciplined Looney Tunes to win a basketball match against Al-G’s digitized champions on the court, the Goon Squad: a team of powered-up virtual avatars of professional basketball stars as you’ve never seen them before. It’s Tunes versus Goons in the highest-stakes challenge of his life, that will redefine LeBron’s bond with his son and shine a light on the power of being yourself. The new movie uploads on FRIDAY, JULY 16 and runs for 31 days.
HBO Documentary Films: We have a multi-part documentary series premiering in July. it looks pretty interesting too, I might add. It is CATCH & KILL: THE PODCAST TAPES. This work, a six-part, half-hour documentary series direct, brings to life Ronan Farrow’s intimate, revealing interviews with whistleblowers, journalists, private investigators and other sources, conducted for the Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist’s podcast and bestselling book “Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies and A Conspiracy to Protect Predators.” The documentary series debuts with two back-to-back episodes MONDAY, JULY 12, (9:00-10:00pm ET/PT), with new episodes airing back-to-back subsequent Mondays at the same time. The series will debut on HBO and be available to stream on HBO Max.
–-Episode 1: The Wire Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 12 (9:00-9:30pm ET/PT)
Filipina-Italian model Ambra Gutierrez reveals the high-stakes police sting operation that captured a chilling admission from Harvey Weinstein—and her plan to preserve the evidence after authorities declined to prosecute.
–Episode 2: The Reporters
Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 12 (9:30-10:00pm ET/PT)
Veteran The New Yorker reporter Ken Auletta and The Hollywood Reporter writer Kim Masters discuss their years-long quests to reveal the “open secret” of Weinstein’s behavior, and the roadblocks that stalled their efforts.
–Episode 3: The Assistants
Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 19 (9:00-9:30pm ET/PT)
A former assistant at Weinstein’s company, Rowena Chiu, speaks out about her experiences with Weinstein’s predation, the difficult choices she and fellow assistant Zelda Perkins made to try to hold him accountable, and her decision to remain silent for decades.
–Episode 4: The Producer
Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 19 (9:30-10:00pm ET/PT)
Rich McHugh discusses producing the story with Farrow at NBC News, interviewing Rose McGowan and numerous other sources on camera, and his dawning realization that the reporting was being shut down behind the scenes.
–Episode 5: The Editors
Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 26 (9:00-9:30pm ET/PT)
The New Yorker editors David Remnick and Deirdre Foley-Mendelssohn, attorney Fabio Bertoni and Fact Checkers Tammy Kim and Fergus McIntosh discuss the arduous process of verifying the details of the story, while fending off legal threats from Weinstein’s camp.
–Episode 6: The Spy
Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 26 (9:30-10:00pm ET/PT)
Undercover spy Igor Ostrovsky talks about being hired to track and gather intelligence on Farrow, and the unexpected turn of events that prompted him to become Farrow’s source. The Citizen Lab’s John Scott-Railton also talks about the rise of private espionage and its consequences, as well as efforts to combat it.
HBO Kids & Family: Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit behind SESAME STREET and other award-winning educational programming, will unveil its first documentary seriesTHROUGH OUR EYES beginning THURSDAY, JULY 22 on HBO Max. It spotlights the perspectives of children as they experience some of the most challenging issues facing families today – homelessness, parental incarceration, military caregiving, and climate displacement. There are four 30-minute films designed for adults and as a co-viewing experience for kids ages 9 and older.
Apart One in 14 American children will experience the incarceration of a parent, and 2.7 million children have a parent in prison right now. This introspective portrait of loss intertwined with moments of joy reminds us of the forgotten consequences of the criminal justice system – the families of those left behind. Directed by Primetime Emmy award-winners Geeta Gandbhir and Rudy Valdez.
Uprooted Since 2016, millions of people in the United States have been displaced by weather-related disasters that are occurring more frequently and with greater intensity. In Uprooted, two children in Iowa face the loss of their family farm due to climate change, while a third in Texas waits for her hurricane-damaged home to be rebuilt. Directed by News and Documentary Emmy Award nominee Talleah Bridges McMahon.
Homefront There are currently 1.9 million service members and veterans relying on caregiver support in the United States, and 3.4 million children live in the homes of these caregivers. In Homefront, three children of veteran families cope with the emotional impact of having a wounded parent, navigate the unique challenges of visible and invisible injuries sustained during military service, and together journey toward collective healing. Directed by News and Documentary Emmy Award winner Kristi Jacobson.
Shelter America’s homelessness crisis can feel distant and bureaucratic until you see it through the eyes of a child. Shelter follows three unhoused children and their parents in Los Angeles as they navigate housing insecurity. While each family’s circumstances are different and their futures uncertain, they are bound by love and a common determination to keep their dreams alive. Directed by Academy Award nominee Smriti Mundhra.
A new cartoon full of classic Hanna-Barbara characters makes its debut on HBO Max. Kids today won’t have a clue who they are, but the Baby Boomers will. Yeah, but looking at the graphic they sure did modernize them. Its JELLYSTONE. Set in the charming town of the same name, this series follows an ensemble of Hanna-Barbera characters as they live, work, play, and (as is often the case), destroy the town in some silly way together. Huckleberry Hound proudly serves as the town’s mayor; Cindy, Boo Boo and Yogi are the town’s medical staff; Jabberjaw works at Magilla’s clothing store where they supply all the bow ties and hats to the town’s citizens; and every character has a specific role in the community. Their paths cross in fun and ridiculous ways, turning everyday activities into hilarious pandemonium. It uploads THURSDAY, JULY 29. Also for the family is more episodes of SESAME STREET through July, plus the launch of Season Two of LOONEY TUNES CARTOONS and NANCY DREW Season Two.
HBO Sports: We’ve got a Sports Documentary Series this month. It is 100 FOOT WAVEdebuting SUNDAY, JULY 18 (10:00-11:00pm). Directed and executive produced by award-winning filmmaker Chris Smith and executive produced by Emmy and Golden Globe-winner Joe Lewis, this six-part HBO Sports Documentary series intimately captures the decade-long odyssey of surfing pioneer Garrett McNamara, who, after visiting Nazaré, Portugal in hopes of conquering a 100-foot wave, pushed the sport to ever-greater heights and alongside locals helped transform the small fishing village into the world’s preeminent big-wave surfing destination. Spanning four continents, this documentary is an inspirational story of a group of people on a quest to achieve new heights, and a town and a sport that were forever changed by one seemingly impossible dream. Also, as always, you can count on REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL. Find episode #291 arrives TUESDAY, JULY 27 (10:00-11:00pm). Recently the show gave screen time to female sports reporters and the harassments they still face; a one-armed sports prodigy at age 10 and kids competing in miniature bull riding.
HBO Latino: We have a solid listing of content to note for this HBO channel. In chronological order we have the movie LO QUE SIENTO POR TI (What I Feel for You) on FRIDAY, JULY 02 (8:00-9:30pm); three simultaneous stories of social inclusion, led by a single mother of two autistic teenagers, a marriage trying unsuccessfully to have a child, and the father of a Special Olympics athlete. Debuting FRIDAY, JULY 09 is the Comedy SpecialENTRE NOS PRESENTS: FRANKIE QUIÑONES: SUPERHOMIES beginning at 10:00pm. After his successful run in HBO’s ENTRE NOS comedy series, internet and viral sensation Frankie Quiñones takes center stage in his very own half-hour comedy special. UN DISFRAZ PARA NICOLAS(A Costume for Nicolas) in which a boy with Down syndrome, upon the death of his mother, takes his trunk of magical costumes to live with his grandparents is next. The animated tale premieres FRIDAY, JULY 16 (8:00-9:30pm). The next week, FRIDAY, JULY 23 (8:00-9:15pm) is CORAZON DE MESQUITE (Mezquite’s Heart, pictured) which is a piece about an indigenous girl in Northern Mexico who dreams of healing her father’s broken heart by playing the harp–which is traditionally played only by men. Closing out the month on FRIDAY, JULY 30 (8:00-9:35) is UNO PARA TODOS(One for All) in which a substitute sixth-grade teacher is tasked with reintegrating a sick student into a class where none of his peers want him back.
Other Movies & Shows:Yes, we could throw in a whole bunch of titles at you. Found across HBO’s channels you will find in July movies like Behind Enemy Lines, Brubaker, Dark Water, Firestarter, Ghost in the Machine, Ira & Abby,Mississippi Burning, Project X, Reservoir Dogs, Staying Alive and more. Exclusively on HBO Max find works like Demolition Man, Eve’s Bayou, Gandhi, Gun Crazy, The Prince of Tides and White Stadium. Also appearing are all five movies in the original Planet of the Apes franchise and seven Tyler Perry movies complete with some Madea.
Next Month’s Tease: HARD KNOCKS debuts every August. There has been no official announcement on the team under scrutiny for 2021 yet. Who are the eligible teams? Can you predict who will be the featured NFL team this training season? Make your pick!
Last month’s answer – I asked who Garrett McNamara was. He is the athlete that is out to ride the curl of a 100 FOOT WAVE. The HBO Sports Documentary plays in July.
Final Clip: Hmmm? I don’t know, I’m feeling like I need a cartoon or two! Here is SPACE JAM: THE NEW LEGACY and JELLYSTONE.
Enjoy the month! Discover HBO.
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Editor at Large of HBOWatch.com and the internet's foremost HBO expert.