Judas and the Black Messiah (HBO Max movie) — This Awards-tipped movie can’t stop with the talent. Starring Daniel Kaluuya, LaKeith Stanfield, and Jesse Plemons, this film could be an awards contender. The story revolves around William O’Neal, who infiltrates the Black Panther Party in Illinois after being offered an FBI plea deal. His mission? To gather intelligence upon the head honcho, Chairman Fred Hampton.
Hip Hop Uncovered (Friday, FX 9:00 & 10:19 p.m.) — This six-part docuseries will air two episodes tonight. The first one introduces five contributors (Big U, Deb, Trick Trick, Bimmy and Haitian Jack), who are hip hop’s unsung legacies. We’ll see how the O.G.s learn to hustle to rise up and sharpen their collective business acumen while making a better life for their families.
Wandavision: Episode 6 (Disney+ series) — Halloween arrives in Westview, and there’s some suggestive Devil-related revelations that might change this whole show’s angle. We’ll have to wait and see how that plays out, but last week, Marvel fans were thrilled to tip their hats to Kevin Feige for what’s easily the best episode of the series so far. Watch out for that brutal Easter egg, though.
Last Week Tonight: Season 8 Premiere (Sunday, HBO 10:00 p.m.) — Everyone’s favorite sarcastic and satiric late-night host has finally returned (after blowing up 2020 and getting weird with poor, sweet Adam Driver), and not a moment too soon. A while lot has happened since we last saw John Oliver break down exactly what’s wrong with our society in a way that only he can do, and let’s hope that he brings back that award-winning hoodie, so we can all get fancy with him.
Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel (Netflix series) — Director Joe Berlinger (Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, the Ted Bundy movie starring Zac Efron and Paradise Lost, the HBO documentary trilogy about the West Memphis Three) launches this new anthology series that explores why some notorious crime locales gain their reputations. This season’s all about L.A.’s so-called “hotel death” and what happened when a young woman named Elisa Lam disappeared without a trace and after behaving bizarrely. Along the way, Berlinger seeks to crush conspiracy theories and vanquish ghost theories, although the whole affair is still a spooky ride.
Map Of Tiny Perfect Things (Amazon Prime film) — Time loops somehow don’t get old, especially after Palm Springs and Russian Doll freshened-up the concept once more. In this film. two teens find themselves reliving the same day while inexplicably drawn together. It’s a love story, of course, where they weigh how and whether to escape their never-ending yet ultimately perfect day.
Into the Dark: Tentacles (Hulu film) — The monthly horror-movie series returns with a psychosexual horror-thriller about love, or love gone wrong at least, when a young Los Angeles couple falls deeply in love, only to find that their intimacy takes an enormously dark turn. Happy holiday of love, y’all.
Here’s the rest of this weekend’s notable programming:
Saturday Night Live (Saturday, NBC 11:29 p.m.) — Regina King hosts with musical guest Nathaniel Raitliff.
Supermarket Sweep (Sunday, ABC 8:00 p.m.) — Leslie Jones and every bit of her enthusiasm will host contestants in this revival of the grocery-shopping game show.
The Equalizer (Sunday, CBS 8:00 p.m.) — Queen Latifah’s toting the gun in this reboot as enigmatic former CIA operative Robyn McCall. This week, she must rescue a boy who’s been kidnapped by a human trafficker, and she must pull off unorthodox information procurement to save the day.
The Lady and the Dale (Sunday, HBO 9:00 p.m.) — The Duplass Brothers are at it again. This week, they conclude the story of Elizabeth Carmichael, whose mysterious past casts a shadow upon her release of a 1970s fuel-efficient vehicle.
Shameless (Sunday, Showtime 9:00 p.m.) — The Milkoviches next door can’t cope with that late-breaking bullet from last week, so Ian and Mickey must help, and Liam is attempting to deal with his role in the mess.
Your Honor (Sunday, Showtime 10:00 p.m.) — It’s limited series finale time for the Panic-Cranston series, and the main man is still breaking bad as a corrupt judge. Adam’s reeling, Eugene is seeking justice, Carlos concludes his trial, and Michael is still a goddamn mess. Fun!
Here are a few more streaming picks:
To All The Boys: Always And Forever (Netflix film) — Noah Centineo’s reign as the Internet’s Boyfriend may be coming to an end with the conclusion of Netflix’s smash-hit, romcom trilogy. Lana Condor’s still keeping Lara Jean’s head on as tightly as possible while things get dreamier with her boyfriend, although everything could change with their oncoming plans for college. Will they both go to Stanford and keep their love alive, or will Lara Jean depart school in New York City? Long distance love isn’t so lovely, and god only knows what else can be revealed in this film that they haven’t shown in this trailer (this franchise is a master at the art of revealing the whole movie in a few minutes), but fans will be excited to find out whether Peter and Lara Jean can actually make it beyond their idyllic high school setting.
Malcolm & Marie (Netflix film) — Zendaya and John David Washington are getting “achingly romantic,” not to mention dramatic, in this black-and-white film shot during lockdown. Sam Levinson directs and Marcell Rev is on cinematography, so the film looks achingly beautiful as well. Washington’s character is celebrating his movie premiere, and Zendaya portrays his girlfriend, and something goes wrong once they return home with revelations flying and their love put to the test. Levinson meant to send an ode to the Hollywood romances of yesteryear with this one, so Happy (early) Valentine’s Day.
More Than Miyagi (Streaming on VOD platforms) — The The Karate Kid films would never have translated with a lesser Miyagi actor than Noriyuki “Pat” Morita. He was Oscar-nominated for the first film, and as Ralph Macchio reveals in More Than Miyagi (a new Love Project Films documentary), his one Morita-centered regret is not being able to walk the awards red carpet with his friend. Cobra Kai fans will also love this film full of revelations from an impressive assembling of Morita’s well-known co-stars, all of whom express nothing but love and respect for an icon.
The New York Times Presents: “Framing Britney Spears”: New Episode (FX on Hulu) — The seemingly unending saga of mega pop star Britney Spears’ controversial conservatorship is only one focus of this docuseries that aims to do a deep-dive, retrospective view on how Spears’ life and career has also been shaped by public perception and the press. It’s been a long twelve years for Britney under her father’s financial thumb, and that followed a few years of public chaos, which I’m sure you will never forget. Her fans rally in this series for her “freedom,” given that Britney has vowed not to work again until she can make her own decisions again.