“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3,” “The Lost Flowers of Alice Hunt” with Sigourney Weaver and Quavo's album “Rocket Power” are among the new television, movies, music and games headed to a device near you
Among the offerings worth your time as selected by The Associated Press’ entertainment journalists are “Mixtape,” a Paramount+ documentary celebrating hip-hop, and the return of the acclaimed comedy “Reservation Dogs” for its third and final season on FX on Hulu.
NEW MOVIES TO STREAM
— James Gunn's “Guardians of the Galaxy" reaches an appropriately sincere, satirical and cornball finale in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.” The film, one of the few non-"Barbie" or “Oppenheimer” summer hits, arrives Wednesday on Disney+ having already grossed $844 million in worldwide ticket sales. Gunn's underdog superhero trilogy culminates with a tale focused on a backstory for Rocket, Bradley Cooper’s wise-cracking raccoon, and a showdown with a supervillain (Chukwudi Iwuji) hellbent on repopulating Earth with a “perfect” species. In my review, I praised the conviction of Gunn's soupy sci-fi spectacle, writing: “Whatever this sweet, surreal sci-fi shamble is that Gunn has created, everyone here seems to believe ardently in it.”
— “Oppenheimer” isn't the only movie around returning to Los Alamos. Steve James, the acclaimed documentarian of “Hoop Dreams,” in “A Compassionate Spy” details the story of physicist Ted Hall, a brilliant 18-year-old Harvard student when he was recruited to work on the Manhattan Project and went on to pass nuclear information to the Soviets. He confessed in 1998, a year before his death. Hall, one of several scientists to leak information from the atom bomb project, maintained he did it for the good of humanity and to prevent a nuclear monopoly. “A Compassionate Spy” debuts Friday, Aug. 4 on video-on-demand and in theaters.
— “Turn Every Page: The Adventures of Robert Caro and Robert Gottlieb,” a documentary of the decades-long collaboration between the "Power Broker” author and his revered editor is a stirring and affection portrait of two literary giants. The film, directed by the editor's daughter, Lizzie Gottlieb, will begin streaming Tuesday on the Criterion Channel, just weeks after the death of Gottlieb, who edited novels by Toni Morrison, John Cheever, Joseph Heller and many others. In my review of the film, I wrote: “Civil wars over semicolons and heated debate over the word ‘looms’ would not, on the face of it, seem like the stuff of a gripping big-screen movie. But make no mistake about it, ‘Turn Every Page’... is as much a rock ’em, sock ’em clash of heavyweights as found in any blockbuster."
— AP Film Writer Jake Coyle
NEW MUSIC TO STREAM
— Quavo will release “Rocket Power,” his first album since fellow Migos member Takeoff was shot and killed outside a bowling alley in November 2022. Quavo introduced the new LP with a trailer that features a massive CGI rocket preparing to launch into space. In a statement, he shared: “Through the process of healing I’ve learned to turn tragedy into triumph. I had to dig deep into my purpose and find the power to keep striving.” This summer, Quavo and Future shared a new song, “Turn Your Clic Up,” which followed recent singles “Greatness” and “Honey Bun.” Shortly before his death, Quavo and Takeoff had shared their joint LP, “Only Built for Infinity Links.”
— Rick Springfield, whose hits include “Human Touch,” and, of course, “Jessie’s Girl,” is putting out his 21st album, “Automatic.” Written and produced by Springfield, the collection features 20 new songs. “My goal was solid three-minute tunes with the biggest hooks I could come up with,” he said in a news release. Springfield previewed his sound by releasing the title track and “She Walks With the Angels.” The album is dedicated to Matty Spindel, a friend and soundman of 25 years who died in 2022. Springfield will be hitting the road this summer on the I Want My ’80s Tour.
— AP Entertainment Writer Mark Kennedy
NEW SERIES TO STREAM
— Hip-hop is markings its 50th anniversary and Paramount+ will stream a documentary called “Mixtape” beginning Tuesday. The film explores how before the hip-hop genre had radio play, streaming or social media, its songs were often shared via mixtapes. Lil Wayne, DJ Khaled, Fat Joe, 2 Chainz, Big Boi and KRS-One are just a few of the artists featured in the doc about mixtape culture.
— The half-hour critically acclaimed comedy “Reservation Dogs” returns for its third and final season on Wednesday on FX on Hulu. The series follows four Indigenous teens who, when we first meet them in season one, are reeling from the death of their friend Daniel. Daniel’s dream was to leave rural Oklahoma for California. The group decides the best way to honor Daniel is by fulfilling his goal and traveling to this magical state he was enamored with. To get there, they’ll steal and scheme but it’s not an easy road. In this new season, they’ve made it to California but don’t have the means to return home. Now that the friends have achieved Daniel’s wish, they also must decide what to do next with their own lives. The Indigenous representation in “Reservation Dogs” also extends behind-the-camera with each of its writers, directors and crew.
— Netflix’s popular British rom-com drama series “Heartstopper,” starring Joe Locke and Kit Connor returns for its second season on Wednesday. Locke and Connor play Charlie and Nick, two high school schoolmates who fell in love in season one. The series has been praised for its portrayal of LGTBQ+ characters.
— Sigourney Weaver and Alycia Debnam-Carey co-star in “The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart” for Prime Video. The story is based on a novel of the same name by Holly Ringland. Debnam-Carey plays Alice, who as a young girl, moved in with her grandmother June – played by Weaver – after a family tragedy. June is a flower farmer and teaches Alice how flowers can be used as a form of self-expression. The story spans two decades and follows Alice into adulthood. The series debuts Friday, Aug. 4 on the streamer.
— Alicia Rancilio
NEW VIDEO GAMES TO PLAY
— Dungeons & Dragons has seen a boom in popularity over the last few years, with a hit movie, live-streamed games and a major supporting role on “Stranger Things.” But it’s been a while since we’ve gotten a true D&D video game. That drought ends with Baldur’s Gate 3. You begin as just some poor sap with an evil parasite stuck in your brain, but once you round up the typical gang of wizards, brawlers, clerics and rogues, the fate of D&D’s sprawling Forgotten Realms is in your hands. Developer Larian Studios, best known for the terrific Divinity: Original Sin, has shown it has the chops to create stirring role-playing adventures, and has promised that this one could take up to 200 hours to fully explore. You can pick up your sword or wand Thursday on PC, or hold out for the PlayStation 5 version in September.
— Lou Kesten