Collateral. Class conflict, Brexit and sweeping anti-immigrant sentiment are at the heart of this new four part Netflix series from acclaimed screenwriter and playwright David Hare. Carey Mulligan stars as Kip Glaspie, a former Olympic athlete turned cop investigating the seemingly random murder of a pizza deliveryman. It happens in front of the apartment of Karen (Billie Piper), the former wife of David (John Simm), a member of Parliament desperately trying to save the Labour Party from getting caught up in extreme right wing sentiment. Others include a group of undocumented workers stuck in a detention center; Former solider Sandrine Shaw (Jeany Spark) dealing with PTSD and feeling under-appreciated for her extended deployment; and Reverend Jane Oliver (Nicola Walker) who is dealing with the fallout of having a girlfriend entering the country illegally. While seemingly random, they all have a connection to the murder with Kip trying to make all of the pieces of the puzzle fit. The show has a lot of similarities to The Wire, with an array of characters weaving in and out of the case. Mulligan, last seen in the Oscar nominated film Mudbound, continues to show why she’s one of the top actors working today, bringing a world weary, yet determined feel to the role. Though its set in England, Hare’s script taps perfectly into what is happening here in the States, with nations coming to grips to 21st Century life, with often not so pleasant conditions results. A series worth checking out. Collateral will be available on Netflix March 9th.
Jessica Jones. Netflix’s acclaimed series returns for its highly anticipated 2nd season. Krysten Ritter is back in the title role, still dealing with PTSD and the events that occurred in The Defenders. She’s trying to get back into her life as a private investigator, but finds herself dealing with newfound fame, anger management classes, and the discovery of a file that holds the key behind how – and who – gave her super powers. She also has to content with the threat that she’s not the only one who received them. The show’s strength has always been how it dealt with the cerebral and mental aspects that come with being a superhero and this season expands on those themes quite well, while retaining its neo-noir edge. Ritter anchors a great cast playing Jones as someone with wit, bite and a whole lot of attitude. The best of the Marvel TV canon is back and ready to blow audiences away once again. Season 2 of Jessica Jones is available now on Netflix.
Both Sides Of The Sky by Jimi Hendrix. As 1960s were coming to a close, no one was bigger than Jimi Hendrix. His third studio album, Electric Ladyland was a global smash and he was the highest paid artist when it came to live performances. But even as Hendrix stood on top of the musical mountain, he was looking to expand his horizons. Jimi began a series of collaborations with other artists and dove into other musical styles. Sadly, his death from an accidental drug overdose in the fall of 1970 ended those plans. Fortunately for us, Hendrix left behind a staggering amount of unreleased tracks to cover several albums. This new release – overseen by Jimi’s sister Janie and original producer Eddie Kramer – showcases his post Electric Ladyland output. Earthy, experimental and freewheeling, it features formative recordings with Jimi’s other great power trio, Band of Gypsys (‘Stepping Stone, ‘Power Of Soul’), early passes of future classics (‘Angel’, done here as a majestic instrumental called ‘Sweet Angel’) and ‘Cherokee Mist’, a track that honors his Native American roots, but also throws in Eastern flavor. There’s also some magnificent takes featuring an array of Hendrix’s musical friends. Stephen Stills sings lead on two tracks, his own ‘$20 Fine’ and an organ-driven version of Joni Mitchell’s ‘Woodstock’ with Hendrix playing bass. Fellow wire puller Johnny Winter joins him on the blues standard, ‘Things I Used To Do’ while Lonnie Youngblood, a singer-saxophonist from Hendrix’s salad days on the R&B circuit absolutely torches ‘Georgia Blues’. It’s very difficult to add new context and insight into a career that has been broken down and dissected more than any of his contemporaries, but this album only adds to an already glorious legacy. Both Sides Of The Sky by Jimi Hendrix will be available this Friday through Amazon, Itunes and all major music retailers.
Everything Was Beautiful, And Nothing Hurt by Moby. Using a reference from the Kurt Vonnegut classic Slaughterhouse Five, Moby’s latest album returns to the many themes and textures that made Play a multi-platinum success worldwide. Hints of pop, gospel, blues and ambient are present throughout with songs ranging from melancholy, to the political. Working as a spiritual, more mature version of Play, Moby has put together an album that stands aside some of his best work. Everything Is Beautiful, And Nothing Hurt by Moby is available now through Amazon, Itunes and all major music retailers.
Please Kill Me. Based on the iconic book by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, this site expands on the many of the book introduced as well as everything pertaining to music, art, fashion, movies and culture from the 60s through today. Both are active contributors to the site and with stories such as ‘How I Lost My Virginity to Stiv Bators’, it is anything but boring. A must see site for any rock n roll fan still looking for pieces with some bite. You can go to www.pleasekillme.com to read more.
New York City. Pacino’s Way. As ‘The New Hollywood’ movement of the 60s and 70s took shape, one actor came to define the era: Al Pacino. Combining nervous urgency with an all-in approach to every role, Pacino’s stock exploded in such roles as The Godfather films, Serpico and Dog Day Afternoon. Nearly 50 years later, Pacino is still active and still bringing it. Quad Cinema will host a two week-plus retrospective that will cover every facet of his career. It will include all of the aforementioned films, early hints of his brilliance (‘The Panic In Needle Park’, ‘Scarecrow’), mid career work (‘And Justice For All’, ‘Bobby Deerfield’, ‘Cruising’), later period triumphs (‘Dick Tracy’, ‘Heat’, ‘Glengarry Glenn Ross’, ‘The Insider’, ‘Insomnia’) and much more. The centerpiece of the run will include a double feature of 2006’s ‘Salome’ (which Pacino directed and co-starred with then-newcomer Jessica Chastain) and the behind the scenes doc ‘Wilde Salome’ that will conclude with an in-house appearance by Pacino. This is the ultimate celebration of one of cinema’s most imitated, quoted and beloved actors of our time. Pacino’s Way will be at Quad Cinema March 14th through March 30th. You can also go to www.quadcinema.com for tickets, a complete rundown of films and additional info.
New York City. Beyond Suffrage: A Century Of New York Women In Politics. As International Women’s Month kicks into high gear and the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements gaining strength by the day, The Museum Of The City Of New York is presenting an exhibit that shows that these campaigns are adding to a century long campaign. It shows how women have navigated New York politics upfront and behind the scenes on issues pertaining to labor, health and government – and how those victories had an impact nationally and around the world. Loaded with documents, artifacts, garments, audio-visual components and photos, its a great primer and reminder for anyone who’s looking to dig deeper on the history of feminism in The Big Apple. Beyond Suffrage will be at The Museum Of The City Of New York through August 5th. You can also go to www.mcny.org for tickets and more information.
Pasadena. Behind The Seen. In addition to be frontman/lyricist and visionary behind Public Enemy and Prophets Of Rage; noted author and historian, and socio-political commentator, Chuck D is also an outstanding graphic artist. In fact, Chuck graduated from Adelphi University with a B.F.A. Degree for Graphic Design. Now he gets to revisit his first passion with his first solo exhibition at Gallery 30 South in Pasadena. It features drawings of his Prophets Of Rage and Public Enemy bandmates, contemporaries such as Ice T, KRS-One and Whodini, and Run The Jewels, whom many consider carries out the revolutionary spirit of PE. It’s a great chance to see another side of Chuck D, while still scratching your hip hop itch. Behind The Seen will be at Gallery 30 South in Pasadena through March 31st. You can also go to www.gallery30south.com for more information.