Coming This Week on Streaming: Limitless / Spirited REVIEW
It’s a busy week for new films and series being released on streaming services, we’ve got you covered ahead of the release of Limitless With Chris Hemsworth on Disney +, a new series by National Geographic and Spirited, the new musical adaptation of a Christmas Carol on Apple TV+. We got the chance to see 2 episodes of Limitless and watch Spirited with Ryan Reynolds & Will Ferrell. I’m a big fan of all those actors so I was curious to see what they had in store.
Limitless With Chris Hemsworth
In this new National Geographic series Limitless With Chris Hemsworth, the famous actor from the Marvel Universe is ready to push the limit of his mind and body to entertain us. In what feels like a Fear Factor docuseries with a celebrity, we are treated with a bunch of stunts and mental challenges for Chris Hemsworth to experience. I was able to see the episodes “Stress Proof” where Chris has to walk on a crane on the top of a skyscraper, and “Acceptance” where he needs to learn to live like a 80-year-old man in a retirement home.
Synopsis: "A different way we can live better for longer: regenerating damage, maximizing strength, building resilience, shocking the body, supercharging memory and confronting mortality."
If this sounds like your cup of tea, you might enjoy this “health & lifestyle” series, there’s a lot of interesting information about how our mind and body works, and how we can push our limits. Unfortunately, it’s not much of my cup of tea and my main criticism is that I just thought the episodes were overlong (clocking in at 53 minutes and 73 minutes respectively). My favorite episode was “Acceptance” because it was actually pretty funny and reflective at times. The absurdity of having Chris Hemsworth living in a retirement community wearing a suit to limit his movement mixed with some touching moments where he needs to confront his fear of aging.
Overall, I was hoping for maybe more entertainment or emotional connection there. I like the “A Day in the Life” aspect of it as we follow Chris Hemsworth with his entourage and family, he’s a great action star and it’s always fun to have a window into their lives when they allow us to. It felt like something my mom would catch on TV on a Sunday afternoon and probably enjoy, and I mean that as a compliment. I honestly think she would like that show and I might actually recommend it to her, but I don’t think I was the target audience for this one.
Initial Score: 6/10
Limitless with Chris Hemsworth starts streaming on November 16th on Disney+
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, Christmas movies are knocking at the door and I love it! This year we are treated with a musical adaptation of A Christmas Carol by Ryan Reynolds & Will Ferrell. Spirited is actually a modern twist on the Charles Dickens story without revealing too much, I was pleasantly surprised how they went and told their own story based on the classic. The 1951 version of Scrooge with Alastair Sim is a Holiday classic for me and probably my favourite adaptation of them all, but this is totally different in tone, starting with the obvious: it’s a musical.
Synopsis: “A musical version of Charles Dickens's story of a miserly misanthrope who is taken on a magical journey.”
You hope a Christmas movie warms your heart like a cup of hot chocolate with marshmellows by the fireplace on a cold December night, but Spirited was more like entering the mall and hearing a Mariah Carey Christmas song for the 20th time of the season, so that's not so bad if we're being honest. The first couple of times you hear it, you’re happy because you know Christmas is coming. But it’s still Mariah Carey.
Will Ferrell & Ryan Reynolds' chemistry is what elevates it above average, they are really great together and clearly having a blast, so that's contagious. Despite the lively & colourful musical numbers this felt slightly overwhelming, overdone & overcooked. At the end of the day, it made me laugh and made me feel happy, it’s a fun modern twist on the classic story. I don't know if it's bound to become a tradition every year, it's a bit early to tell, but I can see some people falling in love with this film.
Another big positive is the music, for fans of musicals there is a lot to unpack here and surprisingly both Ferrell & Reynolds can hold their own singing and dancing. If you have a problem with people breaking into songs every 10 minutes in a movie, this might be an issue for you. For me I can take it or leave it, it always depends on the execution but I thought it was mostly well-done here. So I'm not going to be a Grinch here and say I didn't like it, because I did. It's just... a bit much at times. Maybe it's the lack of snow outside that didn't spark my Christmas spirit.
Initial Score: 6.5/10
Spirited starts streaming on November 18th on AppleTV+