Netflix released this quick binge-able 7 episode series called The Queen’s Gambit. It’s based off a 1983 novel also by the same name “The Queen’s Gambit.” The series follows the chess prodigy Beth Harmon as a kid in an orphanage to becoming a Chess Grand Master. I wasn’t really impressed at the start of the show. The pacing of exploring Harmon’s past was slow. And although I know how to play chess, I was wondering how they were going to make “chess exciting for the viewers.” Watching through the episodes, the build up of excitement was purposely portrayed through the move anticipation, facial expressions and actions of the opponents during the chess matches. The actors/actresses made up for the lack of detail and intricacies of chess. Slowly, I started to root for Harmon winning each match and conquering her demons (drug usage, alcohol and self destructive behavior). The chess matches in the 2nd to last and last episodes were amazing because the producers managed to create the “championship game tension” that shows not only the importance of Harmon’s victory. Along the way, I also started admiring the costume designs of Harmon. At the very end, the all white outfit was a spectacular way to showcase not only Harmon winning but also as the Queen atop of the chess field.
Netflix recently released a 4 episode documentary called Challenger: The Final Flight about the Challenger disaster and the stories around the seven astronauts, the decision makers behind Launch/No Launch decision, a brief history into the infamous O-ring and then a very brief intro on the role of the Rogers Commission.
Overall, I think the video editing is fantastic and very slick. The producers leave you at “cliff hangers” between episodes. I say “cliff hangers” because everyone knows what happened to the shuttle. The way the first episode ended was amazing. It leaves you momentarily silenced with the shuttle exploding mentally but I’m seeing the credits roll. I literally went “whoa, what just happened there” because I didn’t expect the sudden fade to black and fade to credits as someone was talking about the Challenger launch and seeing it go up into the clouds. The other fascinating part of this show were about the stories behind the decision makers to continue with the launch as well as the emotions of the family members who literally watched their loved ones die in the explosion. Some of the decision makers didn’t seem to show any remorse on the show when talking about the launch. Although I wonder if they kept up the appearance as a matter of principle, I don’t know how one could not show any emotion or remorse after 40 years. I felt a bit of disdain and anger towards the two NASA engineers Mulloy and Lucas with their actions around the decision to launch and their subsequent attempt to justify the launch.
If there’s a lesson to be learned… the value of human lives is more important hitting some artificial timeline and budgets
A new Netflix series series called Million Dollar Beach house recently got categorized under “something I may be interested in.” The show follows around real estate agents around selling multi-million dollar houses in New York’s The Hamptons. Million dollar houses… why does that sound familiar!? Oh… is it because I recently finished watching the new season of another Netflix series Selling Sunset?
I finished the first episode and I have to say… I’m not really liking the show. My biggest complaint is actually about the agents of the show. I don’t like any of them. One has this “bro” aura that I suspect is being carefully curated through editing magic. Another has the “down on my luck” kind of guy where at best you know he’s going to succeed because he’s a white male. Then you have an ambitious black guy who wants to succeed. And to round out the cast, there’s a high-spirited opinionated female agent. Second, I’m not familiar with The Hamptons so hearing the agents talk about how rich, expensive, and selective their clientele are really means nothing. In Selling Sunset’s Hollywood, you have similarly rich, expensive, and selective clientele that the Selling Sunset agents work with. If anything, the Selling Sunset’s expansion into San Fernando Valley gives small glimpse into the more “affordable” price point offerings as well too. Third, I will admit… the catfights on Selling Sunset are much more interesting than the “bro fights” that were displayed in the first episode and hinted at in subsequent.
Netflix has a new documentary on what is COVID-19 disease. It’s a nice synopsis of everything the scientists currently know about the disease COVID-19 as well as the SARS-COV-2 virus that causes this disease. And… there’s still a lot the scientists do not know. If you still don’t think this pandemic is not “really that bad” and you want to “open up for business,” this should be a mandatory watch for all of you. I hope you change your mind after this.
However if you insist on still wanting to get out and open for business, please do everyone a favor and decline ANY AND ALL medical attention. If you openly defy sound scientific advice, then naturally you should also not seek these scientific based medical attention that could save your life. After all, the limited resources should be going to those essential workers (healthcare, grocery, restaurant workers) who were taking all the necessary precautions and were infected by the dummies who believed their freedoms were being “trampled on.”
There is no freedom from death. There is no freedom when dead.
Jay Chou… musician, songwriter singer, actor, entertainer… and now a travel show host on Netflix. Jay Chou certainly is using his leverage and star power to invite a lot of the Taiwanese guest entertainers to his show (so far up to episode 4). What’s fun about the show is the guest will show Jay around a city (usually their home city) and the local attractions. In addition to the guest, he also has a group of friends that tag along with him and act as the targets of his antics. And of course the crowds that follow them trying to take a picture or autograph. He has also has
What I didn’t know is Jay’s fascination with magic tricks and competitive nature. In just about every show so far, there’s a competition with a punishment associated with losing. Of course, Jay “has to not lose” every time and will stack the cards in his benefit. Even his friends know that and are willing to play along. In those interviews afterwards, you can tell they don’t take it him too seriously and it’s all in good fun.
In the Taipei episode (episode 4), Jay saying he’ll treat everyone at the restaurant is a good PR move.
If there’s a trainwreck documentary to watch, Netflix’s Tiger King would be very high on that list to watch. There’s just so many things that’s crazy and wrong about the show that it’s hard to stop watching. I really don’t know how to describe it. It’s also a top ranked Netflix show. Even President Trump was asked about it (clip from Twitter) . Talk about crazy…
Netflix has this fascinating documentary called Dirty Money that describes in detail some of the ways Americans cheat other Americans. The show is in season 2 and episode 5 about Guardianships absolutely sickens my stomach. The greed of individuals who are “managing” the estate of people knows no bounds and then using the court systems to “enforce/force” the older population into such an arrangement.
I have to admire the older population who have been responsible and managed to amass a significant amount of wealth. They worked, saved and managed to finally live a comfortable life including a bright retirement future with little need to worry about finances. They are still in good health and have sharp, lucid mind. Many of them are more than capable of living alone with perhaps a person to check on them every day/few days. Truly a person able to enjoy their golden years with little monetary worries is something to admire.
When it comes to guardianships, I understand why there is a need for it. There will be times when people are unable to make decisions let alone take care of themselves. Yet from the documentary, there seems to be a system that seeks to take advantage of the court system to strip the elderly of the right to have a voice in the matter while assigning them to people who’ll manage the assets for a percentage of the total assets. Not only that, the management could have special kickback relationships with other companies who provide services to the elderly that end up charging exorbitant prices. Free reign over a person’s financials with no checks and no balances… egads…
I understand the premise of Netflix’s Love is Blind show. But man… through the use of TV magic, it feels like the “singles” are bonding really fast. Although I think it’s possible to understand a person within a few days of non-face to face interactions, the real challenge comes from the future face to face interactions. How much of how their initial connection is pure adrenaline/oxytocin rushing through their systems?
As the episodes go on, they start showing a lot of very common real world situations. They all seem to reveal some very personal situations…
- Self sabotage of self.
- Not being supported after an abortion
- Insecurity of age gaps in relationship
- Abandonment issues
This show has a lot to take in.
Netflix has a movie regarding these two popes. It’s a pretty riveting movie to watch that gives some (hopefully historically accurate) account of why Francis became the natural successor to Benedict. It touched upon Francis’ history, his fall from faith and rebirth into who he is now. Sprinkled throughout the movie, the writers somehow managed inject dry humor into a fairly serious movie.
Interestingly enough, the two actor’s are nominated for best actor and supporting actor roles as well. I certainly hope one or both win.