CHERNOBYL (2019)

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Creator: Craig Mazin

Cast: Jessie Buckley, Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård 

One of the world’s worst man-made catastrophes happened on April 1986, an explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Soviet Union.

An excellent US series  where sacrifices was made and men have suffered a great deal. It is an hommage to those people who died in the explosion and those who fought to keep it from spreading and contained it. And what a bunch of brave men they were. Well made and filmed with the  great performances from Jared Harris, Emily Watson, Stellan Skarsgard, and more. What happened on April 26, 1986 when a safety test went extremely  wrong. They are the workers that are most inexperience with no proper equipment to work with combined with the abusive supervisors who didn’t know what they were doing and the disaster that is going to follow is going to be so intense that they are not going to believe their eyes. Harris Played by Valery Legasov, a key Soviet nuclear physicist who is the first to realize what has happened at Chernobyl, and what it means is going to happen now. The series capture what happen after the incident and how they are going to contain it and clean up this mess. What killed me it that the Soviet government saw it happened claimed nothing was wrong. You have got to be kidding me. After the meltdown, there were several ticking time bombs related to Chernobyl, including the even of a massive explosion, the containment of the nuclear radiation leaking across Russia, and the fact that it was headed down into the water supply for most of the country. How was this avoided it is simple it is called human sacrifice. People who were willing or were ordered to contain this mess and clean it up. It is an all star cast here that delivers an outstanding performances. Here is a bit of news the Soviet Union where the city was evacuated because of radiation of which the military told them they could go back later is now a ghost town but wait there is more now that the radiation is low somewhat in some places ,the government have decided to make it a tourist attraction. You have got to be kidding me. So they decided to make money out of it and what killed me, is that the tourists are coming. They are strict rules and if the tourists does not obey them and have too much radiation on them they are fined 1000 Euros. A terrific series from HBO were I salute the men who sacrificed their lives for others to live.

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WHEN THEY SEE US (2019)

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Cast: Asante Blackk, Caleel Harris, Ethan Herisse 

The true story of five teenagers who are accused of raping a woman in Central Park in 1989. The thing is they did not commit the crime.

1989 five boys as forever known as the Central Park Five when they were put on trial for a crime they did not commit. Coerced confessions that didn’t even have consistent details of the crime, the press and the prosecutors in New York City convicted Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana, Jr., Korey Wise and Kevin Richardson, sentencing them to years of prison . While the NYPD harassed and terrorized these minors, the actual criminal walked unseen through Central Park. The story has been told as the documentary The Central Par five. When They See Us uses a four-episode Netflix miniseries, starting with the events of April 19, 1989, when investment banker Trisha Melli was brutally raped and left for dead in the North Woods of Central Park and ending in 2002 when an inmate confessed to the crime. Some scenes are horrifying, harrowing, upsetting and infuriating. To think that the police has done their job and still today they think they did their job is unbelievable. The series never loses sight of its thesis statement that Black and black people are presumed guilty at all times. The series is not going to let you forget how the justice system and the press have failed even today nothing is changed. The system failed those kids. You will see how the interrogation was coerced then the trial. The last episode unleashes the full horror of both prison life and the assault on Melli. The NYPD was tormenting the Central Park Five, the real rapist was walking  through the park covered in blood and free to commit a few more attacks before being captured. A Horrific and hard to watch series. Sadly it is still going on today.

 

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when they see us

 

THE TUDORS (2007 – 2010)

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Creators: Michael Hirst

Cast: Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Henry Cavill, Anthony Brophy

The series tells in a fictional and loosely adapted the story of the life of Henry VIII, his reign and his successive marriages.

Nice one there I do add myself. It is a great series who told the story their way in a fictionalized manner and it might piss off some historian but is it is entertaining as hell. By documenting the early years of his reign, The Tudor is able to catch Henry who at 18 was in power. Everyone knows about the fat, bearded, dangerously misogynistic Henry, but in his youthful years he was not only more physically agile and sexually adventurous so they tell us here  but also a bit more forward thinking. Of course, a lot of events didn’t go his way, and his anger would soon rise to cause woe. The Tudors doesn’t shy away from telling the story. Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, became King Henry VII at age 28 after defeating Richard III and later marrying Elizabeth of York. His rise was complicated and bloody, but his reign led to peace, and he eventually started the transition to his oldest son, Prince Arthur. Nice costume as authentic has it is going to get. The actors stand out in this series as well a job well done. Fun to watch although it does not shy away from the nudity or anything else.

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the tudors

DANCING ON THE EDGE (2013)

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Creator: Stephen Poliakoff

Cast: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Matthew Goode, Joanna Vanderham

Dancing on the Edge takes place in the 1930s, exploring racial tensions in Europe when a jazz band, led by Louis (Chiwetel Ejiofor), begins to get attention in London, with help from journalist Stanley (Matthew Goode). There is also some problem with the booking of venues and immigration complications for one particular member, but Poliakoff wants to do something more with the story. The forbidding romance plus a dead body surfacing.

Here is a great mini-series from Britain where Jacquelin Bisset has won a golden globe for this one if I am not mistaken. It has 6 episodes of 1 hour and 30 minutes long. It is about this jazz nabs who is trying to make a name for themselves with the help of a journalist acting as the manager, but will encounter the difficulties of a black jazz band to make it big due to racism. There is a forbidding romance that will take in effects here well done by Poliakoff. There will be an incident that will set off a series of events.  Bisset’s performance is outstanding. The decor plus the music are great here it feels that you are really in the 30’s. An other British drama that kicks ass of course it is a period piece again but I love it.

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WHITE QUEEN (2013)

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Creators:Philippa Gregory, Emma Frost, Malcolm Campbell

Cast: Aneurin Barnard, Rebecca Ferguson, Amanda Hale

The White Queen opens in the 15th Century, at the height of The War of the Roses; a battle for power between two houses — York and Lancaster. King Edward (Max Irons) has taken over the throne. While riding through the countryside one day, he meets Elizabeth Rivers (Rebecca Ferguson) and there is love at first sight. They soon married And Elizabeth soon finds herself on the throne as queen. Lord Warwick (James Frain) does not like Elizabeth and plots against her. Elizabeth attempts to deliver a male heir to Edward, but there is a big turmoil  coming in the kingdom. Meanwhile Lady Margaret Beaufort (Amanda Hale) feels that her son, Henry Tudor, is the rightful heir to the throne and begins to manipulate the power to see it what will happen.

The white queen is a mini series that tells the British history in a detailed look at the turmoil time back then. You are going to pay attention to the story because there is so much going on and so many characters. And yes there is much backstabbing going on here bargaining and moe back stabbing plus who is going to marry who to be in power. Yes there is arranged marriages back in the day that is what went on. There are witches magic just to get power and keep it flowing. It is a top-notch production with some awesome costumes design and beautiful cinematography. Ferguson delivers an outstanding role here as well as the others actors. Great story telling here as original as well. Here is a series worth looking at.

The White Queen

the white queen

 

SPARTACUS: GODS OF THE ARENA (2011)

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Creator: Steven S. DeKnight

Cast: John Hannah, Manu Bennett, Peter Mensah 

This was the story of Spartacus a little before he became the god of the arena. Unfortunately the series stopped here because Andy Whitfield tragically found himself battling cancer and died and the producers had to reset the casting process. When Andy was batting cancer the producers decided to do the prequel of the family the Batiatus/Lucretia storyline. Than went on to make Spartacus: Blood and sand with a fairly new Casting. It is bloody with nudity and violent as hell well that the way it was back then. People were slave and taken by a family with a bunch of fighters and force to fight in the arena against an other family’s fighters to the death. The thing that I don’t like is too many slow-motion shot they should be a few than back to normal. Other than that it is fine the writing is great so is the action. Lucy Lawless, Craig Parker, and John Hannah is perfect casting there. Andy Whitfield is brilliant as Spartacus and he stand out with a fine performance. The fighting scene are superb no doubt. The story line is fluid and moves along just fine like you would expect no boring scenes there. See back then there were bisexual men and women as well as heterosexuals sex was done where ever even people were watching that is what it was back then. It was a wild party at best and the wine was flowing with good food. Yeah! I know it was a little bit barbaric then but that is was it was. Over all great series.

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BOARDWALK EMPIRE (2010 – )

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Creator: Terence Winter

Cast: Steve Buscemi, Stephen Graham, Vincent Piazza 

It is the Prohibition era of the 1920s Boardwalk Empire is the story of Enoch “Nucky” Thompson ( Steve Bucsemi), the treasurer of  Atlantic City, New Jersey. When Prohibition came around Nucky had a foot in everything bootlegging , to a cut in the businesses in the black community and doing business with mobsters. The Fed are investigating him big time.

Here is a series Produce by Martin Scorsese. What I like about Boardwalk Empire is that some characters are slow to reveals their true intentions. Nucky is the type of guy that would prefer to resolve problem by talking business instead of violence, and does not like to get his hands dirty. Jimmy told nucky you can’t go just on foot in the world of gangsters you have to put both feet in. Also it is the start of some gangster’s career like Al Capone and lucky Luciano when they were young. Great choice to put Steve Buscemi  in the series as Nucky he fits the Part perfectly well. The rest of the cast is fantastic my hats up to the casting director in this one. Most of the episodes is directed by Tim Van Patten, he also writes them and he is the producer in this one and what a terrific director he his, he has directed some episodes of the Sopranos also what a terrific director and writer. There is history there since some of the  characters are real character from back then. . Although He did only have a foot in withe the gangster but in order to make the series the went the other way. 1920s Atlantic City was recreated for this series in a set in Brooklyn, New York. Almost an exact replica like it was in the 20’s. This is one of my favorite.

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