As we all try to move through this bizarre year, we now focus on trying to go back to school safely, the looming election and how our favorite sports teams are going to fare. One constant we can be sure of is that HBO, via all its outlets, is going to keep on providing a variety of quality entertainment choices before us. Here is a look at what is being offered in September and beyond.
A few quick points:
We are graced with the presence of the Divine Miss M.
Ridley Scott has got our attention on HBO Max
International content is strong in September
Get ready for a HURICAN (Hurricane)
And keep on the lookout for THE INVISIBLE MAN
HBO Original Series: We start with the new premieres for the month first. We lead off with THE THIRD DAY, a limited series starring Jude Law and Naomie Harris. This six-part series, created by Felix Barrett and Dennis Kelly, debuts MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 14 (9:00-10:00pm ET/PT). Told over the first three episodes, “Summer” stars Law as Sam, a man who is drawn to a mysterious island off the British coast where he encounters a group of islanders set on preserving their traditions at any cost. Is he going to stumble onto something he shouldn’t? “Winter” unfolds over the latter three episodes and stars Harris (Academy Award nominee for Moonlight) as Helen, a strong-willed outsider who comes to the island seeking answers and surely shouldn’t be rocking the boat either. To add to the mystery, what is reality seems to get played with. We will give more details as we get them but for now watch the trailer:
Sharing the same night is Luca Guadagnino’s WE ARE WHO WE ARE. This eight episode series debuts MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 14 (10:00–11:00pm ET/PT). A story about two American kids who live on a U.S. military base in Italy, the series explores friendship, first-love, identity, and immerses the audience in all the messy exhilaration and anguish of being a teenager – a story which could happen anywhere in the world, but in this case, happens in this little slice of America in ItalyJack Dylan Grazer stars as shy and introverted fourteen-year-old Fraser, who moves from New York to a military base in Veneto with his mothers, Sarah (Chloë Sevigny) and Maggie (Alice Braga), who are both in the U.S. Army. Tom Mercier (Jonathan) plays Sarah’s assistant. Jordan Kristine Seamón stars as the seemingly bold and confident Caitlin, who has lived with her family on the base for several years and speaks Italian. Compared to her older brother Danny (Spence Moore II), Caitlin has the closer relationship with their father, Richard (Kid Cudi), and does not communicate well with her mother Jenny (Faith Alabi). Caitlin is the lynchpin of her group of friends, which includes Britney (Francesca Scorsese), an outspoken, witty, sexually uninhibited girl; the cheerful and good-natured Craig (Corey Knight), a soldier in his twenties; Sam (Ben Taylor), Caitlin’s possessive boyfriend, and Craig’s younger brother; Enrico (Sebastiano Pigazzi), a playful eighteen-year-old from Veneto, who has a weak spot for Britney; and Valentina (Beatrice Barichella), an Italian girl.
The two series continuing their runs in September are next. From showrunner and executive producer Misha Green, HBO’s new drama series LOVECRAFT COUNTRYcontinuesSUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 06 (9:00-10:00pm ET/PT). And if you are not getting enough about the show in our weekly review, which includes Behind-The-Episode clips and Podcasts then seek out the San Diego Comic-Con panel, a Spotify Playlist and more. Just be leery of the Shoggoths. Also, continuing its run is ROOM 104. It resumes FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 04 (11:00-11:30pm)A least we got some titles for this one:
–Season 4, Episode 9: “The Last Man”
Debut Date: FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18 (11:00-11:30pm)
–Season 4, Episode 10: “The Night Babby Died”
Debut Date: FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 25 (11:00-11:30pm)
REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHERcontinues the season FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11 (10:00-11:00pm)and runs the subsequent Friday nights for the month. LAST WEEK TONIGHT WITH JOHN OLIVER took only appears once this coming month and that isSUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 27 (11:00-11:30pm). Perhaps he is going yo surprise us by being back in the studio, We will see but until then here is an Oliver segment.
Movies: Only three theatrical movies debut in September, but remember, that may become the norm as movies have not been releasing due to the pandemic and the titles will get sparse. At least we have a nice variety between the trio. The titles are Spies in Disguise, The Invisible Man and Just Mercy.
A suave secret agent must team up with a nerdy scientist after being inadvertently turned into a pigeon inthe fun, fast-paced animated adventure. SPIES IN DISGUISE. It debuts SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 05 (8:00-9:45pm ET/PT) It features the voices of Will Smith, Tom Holland, Rashida Jones, Ben Mendelsohn, Reba McEntire, Rachel Brosnahan, Karen Gillan, DJ Khaled &Masi Oka. Directed by Nick Bruno, Troy Quane; screenplay by Brad Copeland and Lloyd Taylor, screen story by Cindy Davis, inspired by the animated short film ”Pigeon: Impossible” by Lucas MartellOn SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19 (8:00-10:05pm ET/PT) youwill find the premiere of THE INVISIBLE MAN. The unseen maniac of the Universal monsters canon returns to invisible life in this frightening 2020 reboot. Golden Globe-winner Elisabeth Moss (TV’sThe Handmaid’s Taleand Mad Men) stars as a young woman who escapes her abusive relationship with an optics engineer only to have him fake his death and return as the titular terror–who makes it his sole mission to terrorize her. An “expertly told, horrifying story of an abusive relationship filtered through the lens of a classic horror movie monster” (The Wrap). Co-starring Aldis Hodge, Storm Reid, Harriet Dyer, Michael Dorman and Oliver Jackson-Cohen. Directed by Leigh Whannell; screenplay and screen story by Leigh Whannell. The movie JUST MERCY takes the last spot in the month, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 26 (8:00-10:20pm ET/PT). In this one, Michael B. Jordan stars as Harvard-educated attorney Bryan Stevenson, who goes to Alabama in the 1980s to defend the poor, and fights to prove the innocence of a death row inmate (Jamie Foxx). Rob Morgan, Tim Blake Nelson, Rafe Spall and Brie Larson co-star in this inspirational true story. Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton; written by Destin Daniel Cretton & Andrew Lanham, based on the book by Bryan Stevenson. Take a look at its strong trailer:
HBO Documentary Films: AGENTS OF CHAOS, a two-part documentary directed by Emmy® and Academy Award Winner Alex Gibney will debut WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23 (9:00-11:00 p.m. ET/PT), with part two airing the following evening at the same time, ahead of the November elections. The film is a product of years of reporting on Russian interference in the 2016 election. With never-before-seen footage inside the Russian troll farms, and videos unearthed from the Russian deep web, the film digs deep into the sophisticated plans to undermine democracy, raising the alarm for the American public, but also proving that these “agents of chaos” weren’t Russians alone; they were also key players in the United States who, through venality, corruption or circumstance, furthered Putin’s goals, with a vulnerable and unsuspecting American public as their target. And THE VOW continues its run. The third installment begins SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 06, (10:00-11:00pm ET/PT and each subsequent Sunday at the same time, through the month. AXIOS still airs every other week in August. Find it debuting MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 14 & MONDAY SEPTEMBER 28 at 11:00pm or shortly after for 45 minutes.
HBO Specials:From playwright and screenwriter Paul Rudnick and directed by Jay Roach, HBO’s socially distanced comedy COASTAL ELITES debuts SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 12 (8:00-9:30 p.m. ET/PT). The comedic satire tells contemporary stories of characters breaking down and breaking through as they grapple with politics, culture, and the pandemic. Bette Midler (Tony Award winner for Hello, Dolly!), Kaitlyn Dever (Unbelievable, Booksmart), Dan Levy (Emmy nominee for Schitt’s Creek), Sarah Paulson (Emmy, Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild Award winner for American Crime Story) and Issa Rae (Emmy nominee for HBO’s INSECURE) star in this special presentation that explores our current world of deeply divided politics and the universal pursuit of human connection.
Originally conceived for the Public Theater in New York, COASTAL ELITES took the leap from the stage to the screen at the beginning of the pandemic and evolved in real time as the unprecedented events of 2020 unfolded. Filming took place earlier this summer under quarantine guidelines. Ir spotlights five distinct and impassioned points-of-view across the United States. When the shutdown forces these characters to cope in isolation, they react with frustration, hilarity and introspection. Here is our first look via the trailer:
HBO Sports:HARD KNOCKS: LOS ANGELESwraps up its five-episode season in September. Episode 4 debuts TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 01 (10:00-11:00pm ET/PT)and concludes the following week at the same time. REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL debuts a new installment TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22 (10:00-11:00pm ET/PT).
Other Movies and Shows:Over the Labor Day weekend HBO has the big current shows in heavy rotation so as io catch up or watch again. From legendary filmmaker Terrence Malick (Days of Heaven) comes the powerful, poetic story based on real events, called A HIDDEN LIFE.It is about an Austrian farmer who faces execution for refusing to fight for the Nazis during World War II. Starring August Diehl, Valerie Pachner, Maria Simon, Tobias Moretti, Bruno Ganz, Matthias Schoenaerts, Karin Neuhauser and Ulrich Matthes. Not for everyone but a good movie. Imagine losing your entire family in a single night? (No, we are not talking about THE LEFTOVERS) Now imagine having the ability to bring them back. (We are talking about REPLICAS). Keanu Reeves stars in this gripping sci-fi thriller as a brilliant neuroscientist who works desperately to clone his wife and children after a tragic car wreck. But it’s a case of “be careful what you wish for” when his groundbreaking (and highly unethical) experiment begins to go awry. Co-starring Alice Eve, Thomas Middleditch and John Ortiz.
Other HBO Channels: Seek out these titles.HBOLatino: The promised International content begins with this channel.Debuting 09.04 at 8:00pm is LO DEJO CUANDO QUIERA (I Can Quit Whenever I Want). In this movie, after losing their jobs, three college professors reinvent themselves as drug dealers when one of them creates a multivitamin that allows you to party all night long with no side effects. Starring David Verdaguer, Ernesto Sevilla, Carlos Santos, Cristina Castano, Miren Ibarguren, Amaia Salamanca and Ernesto Alterio. An aspiring MMA fighter who suffers from Multiple Personality Disorder delves into his mental illness with a pioneering but troubled psychologist. Cassius Corrigan and Yara Martinez star in HURACAN (Hurricane) It debuts on 09.11 and is written and directed by Cassius Corrigan. LA MUSIQUITA POR DENTROis about a shy guy who has been unlucky in love his whole life but falls for a pretty co-worker and gets tips from a friend on how to win her over. It debuts on 09.18 right before the latest installment of HABLA NOW. HBO Signature:Here is a movie I like called THE MUSTANG. An angry, violent prisoner’s life begins to change after he participates in a rehabilitation program to train wild mustangs. This powerful drama inspired by true events stars Matthias Schoenaerts. As news breaks that a mysterious new planet has been discovered–an exact replica of Earth–a young co-ed is involved in a drunk-driving tragedy. What, is there some kind of do=over on the alternate world? ‘Stay’ for a clever visual strategy’ (Roger Ebert) of STAY, in which a psychiatrist begins to experience strange alterations in reality when he takes on a suicidal patient.HBO Comedy:How about s little ROCKET SCIENCE? High-school teen Hal Hefner has suffered relentless ridicule thanks to a persistent speech impediment. But when the sharp and pretty Ginny Ryerson persuades Hal to be her new debate partner his situation sees changes. Or there is the more adult BRIDESMAIDS or TEAM AMERICA: WORLD POLICE complete with marionette sex and this villain but, thankfully, not in the same scene. There is also CAN’T BUY ME LOVE and JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE.HBO Family:Hey, WALKING WITH DINOSAURS is always cool. So is the animated ANASTASIA with creepy Rasputin and those scrappy THE LITTLE RASCALS are there as well. HBO Zone: A few to view from the Zone include THE ASTRONAUT FARMER. Many people have dreamed of rocketing into space, but for Charles Farmer, it’s a dream that he’s determined to turn into a reality…in his own backyard. I know I have mentioned it before but Billy Bob Thronton has a good movie here. You can also find THE OTHERS and MOULIN ROUGE! here.
HBO Streaming: Okay, don’t fight me on this one because it arrives on 08.31on HBO’s streaming site but it was just announced this week so I want to mention it. It fits nicely with the other international content this month. HBO Europe presents GÖSTAfrom Swedish writer/director Lukas Moodysson (Show Me Love). This heartwarming, heart-wrenching new series explores the humor and tragedy of trying to do good in a dysfunctional world. On the heels of his first job offer, Gösta, a 28-year-old child psychologist, moves from Stockholm to the small, rural Swedish town of Småland. While he sets out to be relentlessly kind and help everyone he meets, not all of Gösta’s noble efforts have happy endings. At his idyllic cottage in the middle of the woods, Gösta hosts a Syrian refugee, Hussein, and simultaneously tries to keep his long-distance relationship alive with his girlfriend Melissa, but things in this small, serene household grow increasingly chaotic following the arrival of Gösta’s fractious, unpredictable father Tomas. Over the course of twelve half-hour episodes, Gösta, struggles to keep everything in order as his life becomes unhinged.
The international content I was going to lead off with was PATRIA. This series halted production due to the pandemic but is now ready to launch and does so across several countries. It arrives here on 09.27. PATRIA tells a story – over three decades – of the Spanish Basque Country threatened by the separatist terrorism of ETA, through the eyes of two families divided by the violent conflict. The day ETA announces a ceasefire, Bittori visits the cemetery where her husband Txato, who was murdered by the terrorists, is buried. She tells him that she has decided to return home to the village where they lived together to try and get closure. Will she be able to live alongside those who hounded her before and after the attack – turning her life upside down? Will she ever be able to find out the identity of the hooded assailant who on that rainy day, killed her husband? Bittori’s presence in the village causes chaos, enraging her neighbour Miren, once a close friend and mother of Joxe Mari, an imprisoned terrorist and the probable killer of Txato. What happened between these two women? What poisoned the lives of their children and their husbands who were so close in the past? The rift that exists between them and their deeply held convictions make trying to forget impossible, but will they be able to forgive in a community shattered by political fanaticism?Some movies starting a rotation include ALL THE RIGHT MOVES, BARNYARD, CLERKS, COLD CREEK MANOR, MIDNIGHT RUN, MIRACLE AT ST ANNA, PROMETHEUS, A ROOM WITH A VIEW and WHEN WE WERE KINGS to name a few.
HBO Max: The highly anticipated Ridley Scott entry finally arrives on the site and it looks pretty interesting to say the least. RAISED BY WOLVESuploads o9.03. We are eager for you to take a look if you haven’t already.
The 10-episode season centers on two androids tasked with raising human children on a mysterious virgin planet. As the burgeoning colony of humans threatens to be torn apart by religious differences, the androids learn that controlling the beliefs of humans is a treacherous and difficult task. Ridley Scott once again offers bold new worlds and technology with Raised By Wolves.
And for something completely different there is UNPREGNANT. In this WarnerMedia Feature Film seventeen-year-old Veronica (Haley Lu Richardson) never thought she’d want to fail a test—that is, until she finds herself staring at a piece of plastic with a blue plus. With a promising college-bound future now disappearing before her eyes, Veronica considers a decision she never imagined she’d have to make. This never-taken-lightly decision leads her on a 1000 mile hilarious road trip to New Mexico over three days with her ex-best friend, Bailey (Barbie Ferreira) where they discover sometimes the most important choice you’ll make in life is who your friends are. The film also stars Alex MacNicoll, Breckin Meyer, Giancarlo Esposito, Sugar Lyn Beard, pop star Betty Who, Mary McCormack, Denny Love, Ramona Young and Kara Royster.It uploads 09.10.
And that’s not all. There is alsoTHE MURDERS AT WHITE HOUSE FARM,a true crime story about three generations of one family murdered at their isolated farm over thirty years ago;THE GREAT POTTERY THROW DOWN, (pictured) a competition series that seeks to find Britain’s best potter;HAUTE DOG,a competition series for dog groomers and MO WILLEMS AND THE STORYTIME ALL-STARS PRESENT: DON’T LET THE PIGEON DO STORYTIME! This special, targeted for kids, includes live readings and sketch comedy by celebrities including Anthony Anderson, Yvette Nicole Brown, Rachel Dratch, Cameron Esposito, Tony Hale, Greta Lee, Tom Lennon, Natalie Morales and Oscar Nunez.
That is just The Original programming launching; there are older shows to enjoy as well like THE BIG BANG THEORY, THE FRESH PRINCE OF BEL-AIR, THE O. C., LUTHER and TORCHWOOD
Cinemax: Nothing right now but movies, movies, movies. They start at 10 to Midnight with Charles Bronson and Akeelah and the Bee and end with The Wings of the Dove and Worth Winning with a lot in between.
Next Month’s Tease: “I Dance Like This,” “Gasoline and Dirty Sheets,” “Every Day Is a Miracle” and “Dog’s Mind”. Do they sound familiar?
Last month’s answer – The actor who was noticed in the movie Shopping, who we know as THE YOUNG POPE is Jude Law. He stars in this month’s THE THIRD DAY.
Final Clip:You didn’t see him up above so, see if you can glimpse THE INVISIBLE MAN.
Enjoy the month! Discover HBO. Stop back here for more news, reviews and schedules.