Volodymyr Zelensky uses a short film to illustrate Ukraine’s need; Mike Myers is back with a Netflix series about a secret society; let’s revisit The Little Prince because why not? Plus: Nicolas Cage achieves perfection. All in today’s Movie News Rundown.
‘How Normalcy Turns to Terror’: When Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had his moment to address the U.S. Congress this morning, he asked them to watch a short video. And it was devastating. It was also striking that a world leader would turn to moving images to make his case, instead of trying to detail Russian’s atrocities in words. As the New York Times‘ David E. Sanger wrote: “Zelensky shares a video, which is graphic, heart-wrenching and searing. How normalcy turns to terror. I can’t recall the last time something like this was shown to an open session of Congress.” It begins at the 20-minute mark below, and it feels wrong to give you a content warning about something happening in real life.
Charities: As a film site, we’re not about to opine on a no-fly zone. But this does seem like a good time to mention that you can help Ukrainian refugees by giving to CARE, IRC, Save the Children and UNHCR. All are reputable, and donations are tax-deductible.
The News: Trying to find the Zelensky speech this morning, I did something I never do — flipped through my 8,000 cable news channels. Almost all, in the morning hours, are focused on quick-hit news, short summaries, and little bites of information. They fill you with excitement or panic, but rarely provide any helpful, actionable information. One thing I appreciate about movies, especially in theaters, is that they demand — and provide the mental necessity — of investing your full attention on a subject long enough to actually learn more about it. I realize the format of this very newsletter may easily lend itself to quick-hit, shallow journalism. But what we aspire to do is provide a gateway to longer-form stories. We read or watch a lot of things, recommend what we consider the best ones, and link off to them for you to watch or read when you have time, perhaps at night. We also throw in dumb jokes whenever appropriate, or not at all appropriate.
Sooo… Who Has to Follow That Video? That would be my friend Dan Delgado, who really did a lovely job on the latest episode of The Industry, which is about the 1974 film The Little Prince. I have never seen The Little Prince, and when I opined to my wife that it looked freaky, she corrected me that it is, in fact, beautiful, and that we should show it to our children. She also quoted this line from memory: “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” You can listen to The Industry‘s interview with Little Prince star Steven Warner, who was only eight when he starred alongside Gene Wilder and Bob Fosse, on Repod or Apple or here:
Another Thing We Try to Do Is Save You Time by Not Writing Full Stories When a Sentence Will Suffice, So You Have Time to Check Out Other Things: The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, in which Nicholas Cage plays a version of himself, has a perfect 100 on Rotten Tomatoes.
Anything Else? People desperate for joy will be delighted to learn of Mike Myers’ return. He plays a whole lot of characters in The Pentaverate, about a secret society dedicated to influencing world events. Netflix’s promotional arm Tudum (named for that two-note sound at the start of Netflix programs, which feels kiiiiind of stolen from Law & Order) says that Myers “will play a total of eight different characters, the foremost a Canadian journalist hot on the trail of the titular society.” Tudum adds: “Along the way, he meets some new faces (Keegan-Michael Key, Ken Jeong, Jennifer Saunders, Debi Mazar, Lydia West) and quite a few familiar ones (Myers, Myers, Myers, etc.).” Guys, you could have just said, “Debi Mazar is in it.”
Lost Opportunity: My favorite thing ever in movie trailers is when one actor plays a bunch of characters so the voiceover guy goes, “Starrring Eddie Murphy… and Eddie Murphy… and Eddie Murphy (!)…” as blah blah blah. The trailer for The Pentaverate unfortunately doesn’t do that.
See for Yourself: Tu-dum.
Main image: Mike Myers… and Lydia West… and Mike Myers (!) as Ken Scarborough, Reilly Clayton, and Anthony Landsdown, respectively, in The Penataverate. Photo courtesy of Netflix.