A lavish sci-fi epic raises the bar for streaming shows, and a series of 20th anniversary documentaries reexamine the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Here’s a look at the streaming highlights for September:
Isaac Asimov’s sci-fi space novels get a jaw-dropping, densely-drawn adaptation in the deep pockets of Apple Inc. The 10-episode space saga follows a group of exiles who, under the direction of psychohistorian Hari Seldon (Jared Harris of “The Crown”), a work to rebuild humanity after the fall of the Galactic Empire. Shot over more than a year and a half, the series is full of grandiose sets, dazzling costumes and ambitions serious about becoming the most talked about TV event this fall (Apple TV Plus, September 24, weekly episodes)
“Scenes from a wedding”
Ten years after the start of their seemingly idyllic marriage, an American couple (played by Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac) begin to reexamine what they have long considered to be a successful relationship. Based on the acclaimed 1974 miniseries by Ingmar Bergman, this limited five-part series uses the Swedish director’s story of love, monogamy, parenthood, and the tacit erosion of trust, as the setting for a contemporary update that introduces new dynamics and technologies into the mix. (Crave / HBO, September 12, weekly episodes)
“Come from afar”
Upbeat music by Canadian couple David Hein and Irene Sankoff takes the stage on the small screen in a recorded performance captured earlier this year on Broadway. “Come from Away” is based on real-life people in Gander, Newfoundland, who unexpectedly welcomed thousands of passengers on flights that were hijacked in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. Their colorful story comes to life with just over 12 chairs, a few tables and a bit of East Coast spirit. Director Christopher Ashley, who won a Tony Award for his directing work, stays true to the stage version while delivering light touches that bring the viewer closer to each character. (Apple TV Plus, September 10)
Documentaries on September 11
Twenty years after the World Trade Center attacks rocked New York City, nearly every major streaming service is revisiting the tragedy with fresh eyes and untold stories. The feature-length documentary “9/11: Inside the President’s War Room” (Apple TV Plus, September 1) traces the historic day, minute by minute, through the eyes of George W. Bush and other American leaders. The five-part series “Turning Point: 9/11 and the War on Terror” (Netflix, September 1) looks back to establish the context of the attacks, evoking the roots of al-Qaida, the terrorists who got on board of every plane and the so-called “war on terror” that followed. Spike Lee’s “NYC Epicenters 9 / 11-2021½” explores multiple stories from New York – including how the city faced COVID-19 – but his third episode (Crave / HBO, September 5) serves as a time capsule of that fateful day . Using a vast collection of attack footage and disturbing footage of people leaping from towers, Lee recreates the fear that swept the city and uncovers new stories of resilience, including that of a rescue effort. little-known maritime.
“Spirit to Soar: Mashkawi-manidoo bimaadiziwin”
Journalist and filmmaker Tanya Talaga’s meditative 45-minute documentary on the deaths of seven First Nations high school students in Thunder Bay, Ontario. – five of which were found dead in rivers – is a heartbreaking reflection on a community marked by racism. Revisiting the stories she initially explored in her book “Seven Fallen Feathers”, Talaga speaks with family members, local youth and community leaders about how colonial systems continue to fail them. (CBC Gem, September 24)
ALSO THIS MONTH:
“Chocolate Babies” – A group of mostly HIV-positive and transgender black activists launch a battle against New York politicians determined to ignore the AIDS epidemic in this deliciously unbalanced satire that is a lost gem of 1990s independent cinema (Criterion Channel, September 1)
“Reservation Dogs” – Four Native American teens mourning the death of their friend commit petty crimes in hopes of raising enough money to leave their reservation in eastern Oklahoma. The comedy was co-created by Taika Waititi and stars Devery Jacobs, who grew up in the Mohawk territory of Kahnawà: ke in Quebec. (Disney Plus / Star, September 1, weekly episodes)
“Kid 90” – Personal video footage captured by actress Soleil Moon Frye, television’s original “Punky Brewster,” provides a glimpse into teenage Hollywood stars from a pre-Internet era, including Freddie Prinze Jr., David Arquette and Leonardo DiCaprio. (Amazon Prime Video, September 2)
“Doogie Kamealoha, MD” – A remake of “Doogie Howser, MD” featuring a spin where the boy genius is now a 16 year old girl and the setting is Honolulu, Hawaii. With Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman, born in Edmonton. (Disney Plus, September 8, weekly episodes)
RETURN SERIES: Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston face the growing COVID-19 crisis in the second season of “The Morning Show,” which launches weekly episodes on Apple TV Plus starting September 10. Netflix confuses fans with the final season of “Lucifer” (September 10) and new editions of “Money Heist” (September 5), “Sex Education” (September 17), “Dear White People” (September 22) and “The Circle” reality contest (September 8). ). Showtime’s “Billions” premieres on Crave on September 5, while British supernatural comedy “Ghosts” returns to CBC Gem for another go-around on September 24.
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This report by The Canadian Press was first published on August 31, 2021.