The Fast Five: Netflix’s ‘Tiger King’ Has Police Asking Questions and ‘SXSW’ Heads to Streaming
April 6, 2020
There is an unprecedented amount of entertainment being made available for home viewing now that we’re all confined to our homes. Try something new, from independent film festival movies to blockbuster HBO shows—or you can use your free time to help prove whether or not Carol Baskins fed her husband to a tiger. It’s up to you.
SOUTH BY SOUTHWEST HEADS TO AMAZON
The South By Southwest Film Festival has always been viewed at as the hip, alternative choice to Sundance, and this latest announcement only cements that legacy. In a bid to help the filmmakers who were hoping to have their big break at this year’s canceled festival, SXSW has teamed up with Amazon to launch Prime Video Presents the SXSW 2020 Film Festival Collection. The festival is free to all users and not locked behind the Prime Video paywall. Anybody with an Amazon account can screen the films at no cost over the 10-day period. Filmmakers will be given the opportunity to opt-in to receive a fee any time their movie screens. This is fantastic news for both filmmakers—whose films will now be exposed to a much larger audience—and movie fans around the country who’ve never had the chance to travel to a big film festival before. There’s nothing worse for film buffs than reading rave reviews about a film they’ll have to wait over a year to see. Well, pandemics. Those are probably worse. But at least now we’ll all have the ability to watch and discuss some great movies together in real time. No date has been announced for the digital festival, but the two companies are aiming for a late-April launch.
LEARN STORY STRUCTURE FROM THE BEST SHOWS OF THE PAST FEW DECADES FOR FREE
If you log into HBO Now, HBO Go, or head to The Roku Channel, you can watch some of the premium cable channel’s best shows completely free of charge. Every episode of Ballers, Barry, Silicon Valley, Six Feet Under, Succession, The Sopranos, The Wire and True Blood are all available to stream for a limited time and provide enough entertainment to last several months, no matter how binge-crazy you go. Since you shouldn’t be going outside, it’s the perfect time to sit down and learn television narrative from some of the best to ever write for the medium. Heard people rave about Succession but never found the time to check it out? Confused when pop-culture references are made about Omar, Stringer Bell and McNulty? Well, no time like the present to discover what everybody’s been talking about. The shows being offered have 7 Emmy® wins for Outstanding Writing and 26 additional writing nominations between them, and should be studied by anybody who wants to write for television. Even watching the pilot for each of these eight shows can reveal a lot about the use of story structure and character development. How did the creators introduce characters? How did they reveal backstories? How did they hint at future storylines while still resolving the ones they introduced in the pilot? Every writer has a different approach, and seeing what path others have taken can help you work out which one is best for you.
If you haven't watched Netflix’s docu-series Tiger King yet, what are you waiting for? Thanks to a combination of timing and insanity, it’s undoubtedly going to be one of the decade’s most consumed pieces of content. Go watch it, then come back. Ready? First of all, I bet you weren’t expecting it to be that crazy. Every time they introduced a new character you probably thought, “Oh, this must be the likeable protagonist.” Nope. Not even close. They just get crazier and crazier. And the Hillsborough County Sheriff is taking advantage of the audience addiction to that crazy by asking the public for tips on the disappearance of Don Lewis—who most definitely was not fed to a tiger—in hopes that people will bring the same passion to this case that other true-crime shows like Serial have managed to get out of their audience. The Sheriff's department is gambling that somebody out there has information that can solve Don Lewis’s disappearance and, fingers crossed, give us another season of Tiger King.
We’re starting to get a look at what the moviegoing world will look like once the cinemas open back up, as Disney cemented its future plans. Essentially, every Disney movie got bumped by one release date. Mulan will move from March 27th to Jungle Cruise’s previous release date of July 24th, sending Jungle Cruise to summer 2021. All Marvel movies will shift over one, with Black Widow bumping The Eternals, which will bump Shang-Chi, and so on. The delays also give movies that had to shut down production extra time to wrap up once filming can resume. One interesting wrinkle is Artemis Fowl jumping from its summer release date and straight to streaming on Disney+. The adventure movie directed by Kenneth Branagh was originally supposed to be released in 2019 before being pushed to 2020, and now will join Frozen II and Onwards in getting an early streaming release.
The World Health Organization recently recommended video games as a good way to practice social distancing. They are also very useful for people who may find themselves going stir crazy. A single game can provide hundreds of hours of gameplay in an entirely immersive world, like the wild west found in Red Dead Redemption or the space colonies of The Outer Worlds. I know you may be thinking, “But I don’t like shooting people so video games aren’t for me.” Well, I have great news! Video games are being made for everybody nowadays, like the peaceful farming simulators Stardew Valley or Nintendo’s perfectly-timed release of Animal Crossing. MobileSyrup took the time to put together a list of relaxing games and apps that can be enjoyed by anybody wanting to put their mind at ease. And maybe you’ll get hooked and slowly work your way from small-town farmer to wild west cowboy.
Written by: Dominic CorryDominic Corry is a Los Angeles-based film critic, writer, journalist and broadcaster. Raised in New Zealand, he is also the West Coast editor of Letterboxd, the social network for movie lovers. For more of his film writing, see his website www.TheGoodInMovies.com