Spicy Sci-Fi; French Treat; Halloween Never Dies, Goop Sex, More

 

“Dune” opens in theaters on Oct. 22. The film will also be released on HBO Max on Oct. 22 and stream for thirty days. “Dune” is based on a 1965 sci-fi novel of the same name by the late Frank Herbert that became a favorite of hippies and “New Agers” and still has something of a cult following.

It is a difficult novel to adapt for the screen. In 1973, Chilean-French director/writer ALEJANDRO JODOROWSKY, now 92, had a top-notch film cast lined-up, but the potential costs soared and the movie was scrapped. In 1984, David Lynch made a film based on “Dune”, also called “Dune”, and it became the biggest critical and financial flop of his career.

The new “Dune” stars TIMOTHEE CHALAMET, 25, as the overseer of a dry, very inhospitable planet with a valuable natural product, called “spice”. Spice can increase a user’s lifetime and enhance their mental abilities. Everybody wants “spice” despite the difficulties in obtaining it.

“Dune” has already played several film festivals. Reviews are mainly positive, but a fairly large group of respected critics gave it a mild thumbs-down.

Also opening on Oct. 22 is “Dispatch”,  a comedy with three different plotlines. These plotlines are all connected to the closing of a French newspaper’s Kansas office. Directed and written by the “quirky” Wes Anderson, the cast includes Timothee Chalamet (again), ADRIEN BRODY, 48, and French actor MATTHIEU AMALRIC, 55

“Halloween Kills” opened on Oct. 15  and, no doubt, will be in theaters until Halloween. It also began streaming on Paramount+ on the 15th. “Kills” is the second film in a planned three-film “reboot” of the “Halloween” “slasher” film franchise.

The re-boot trilogy posits that Michael Myers, the bad guy/killer, was in a mental hospital after his killing spree in the original 1978 “Halloween” film and was released in 2018, only to start killing again. (So, forget about all the “Halloween” movies released after 1978 and before 2018).

JAMIE LEE CURTIS, now 61, co-starred in the 1978 film, and she co-starred in the 2018 re-boot, also entitled “Halloween.” At the end of the 2018 “Halloween”, Myers is trapped in a burning house.

Well, of course, he survives and finds Laura Strode (Curtis) again trying to kill Myers “forever”. The supporting cast includes DYLAN ARNOLD, 27, and KYLE RICHARDS, 52. Arnold’s first big role was in the 2018 Halloween film. In both pics, he plays Cameron Elam, the boyfriend of Strode’s granddaughter.

Richards had a smallish role in the 1978 “Halloween” movie and went on to have a “middling” acting career that virtually ended in 2006. However, she became much more famous when she began appearing in the reality show “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” (2010-present). She married a wealthy Jewish real estate executive in 2004 and converted to Modern Orthodox Judaism. 

The frequently satirized Goop company, a vendor of pricey “touchy-feely/New Age” products, is the creation of GWYNETH PALTROW, 49. In 2020, Goop expanded to documentaries, with Paltrow hosting a six-part Netflix series (“Goop Lab”) which covered such topics as energy healing, anti-aging, and psychedelic drugs. There were many complaints that the series contained a lot of medical mis-information.

On Oct. 21, the six-part documentary “Sex, Love, & Goop” starts streaming on Netflix. Paltrow hosts real-life couples as they explore their bodies with a focus on understanding how people experience pleasure differently. The couples are aided by several sex and relationship experts.  “Entertainment Tonight” pretty much wrote what I wrote just above—but it couldn’t resist adding this bit of snark: [the series is ] “full of touchless orgasms, Wolverine claw sex toys, and crying.”

Here’s another catch-up item: “Dopesick”, an 8-episode Hulu mini-series that began streaming on Oct. 13. It focuses on the victims of the Oxycontin opiate addiction “plague” and, oy, the role of the (Jewish) Sackler family. The Sacklers are now notorious as the former owners of Purdue Pharma, the company that developed, marketed, and “pushed” Oxycontin. MICHAEL STUHLBARG, 53, co-stars as RICHARD SACKLER, 76, the former head of Purdue Pharm and JAMIE RAY NEWMAN, 43, has a recurring role as Richard’s first cousin, KATHE SACKLER.  She is a former Purdue Pharma V.P. and a former Board of Directors member.

DANNY STRONG, 47, created the series. It is based on the book “Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Company That Addicted America”, by Beth Macy.  BARRY LEVINSON, 79, is the mini-series principal director.

 

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