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Spike Lee’s Vietnam movie, Disney’s ‘Artemis Fowl,’ plus concerts, must-see TV, and more to keep you entertained this weekend

Philadelphia Inquirer logo Philadelphia Inquirer 10/28/2020 Staff Reports, The Philadelphia Inquirer


Blue Ox Virtual Music Festival

This first-class bluegrass gathering from Eau Clair, Wis. — Babe the Blue Ox country — is a two-day affair that will mix performances from the festival’s Whispering Pines site by Pert Sandstone, Charlie Parr and Them Coulee Boys, plus socially distanced sets from such far flung A-list pickers as Lillie Mae, Warren Haynes, Molly Tuttle, Sam Bush, Del McCoury and the Travelin‘ McCourys. Friday and Saturday at 2 p.m. at

— Dan DeLuca

Rich Medina

Philadelphia DJ Medina is renowned locally and globally for his adept mixes of R&B, funk, house, hip-hop, soul, and especially Afrobeat. Since the coronavirus shutdown, the Cornell University graduate and instructor — he’s taught a hip-hop history and culture course — has established himself as an essential presence on Twitch. He holds forth multiple times a week on the online platform, hosting raucous house parties but also mellow Meditation Mondays and Kung Fu Theatre sessions where he screens martial arts movies and soundtracks them on the fly. On Twitch TV.

— D.D.

Jeff Rosenstock / Shilpa Ray

Long Island punk rocker Jeff Rosenstock is the former leader of the Bomb the Music Industry! music collective and has compelling side projects going (Antarctigo Vespucci, the Bruce Lee Band). And since 2015’s We Cool?, he’s also carried on a solo career with a series of albums that lay his heart on the line as a young idealist who refuses to give up hope as he rages against the Trump presidency. His latest surprise release, No Dream, is another winner. Always excellent New York rocker Shilpa Ray is also on this bill, which is a fund-raiser for Emily Gallagher, a Brooklyn New York state assembly candidate. 8 p.m. Saturday at

— D.D.


Reinterpreted Reality with Reggie Watts

The comedian, beatboxer, and musician, who’s also the bandleader on The Late Late Show with James Corden and had his own Spatial special on Netflix last year, is doing weekly Reinterpreted Reality shows on the virtual platform AltSpaceVR. What that means is that Watts, who broke down in tears on TV last week discussing the Black Lives Matter protests with Corden, will be performing as an avatar rather than a human, and fans will be in for an interactive experience. Saturday at 8 on

— D.D.


Artemis Fowl

Artemis Fowl is a 12-year-old criminal genius, descending from a long line of criminal geniuses, who must battle underground fairies to find his kidnapped father. Ferdia Shaw stars as Artemis. With Josh Gad, Colin Farrell, and Judi Dench. Based on the bestselling Eoin Colfer series and directed by Kenneth Branagh (Thor). Rated PG, available on Disney+ Friday.

— Howard Gensler

Da 5 Bloods

A new film from Spike Lee about four African American Vietnam War veterans (Delroy Lindo, Clarke Peters, Norm Lewis, Isiah Whitlock Jr.), who return to ‘Nam decades later to find the remains of their commanding officer (Chadwick Boseman) … and maybe some buried treasure. Rated R, available Friday on Netflix.

— H.G.

King of Staten Island

Pete Davidson from “SNL” stars in a loosely biographical comedy-drama as a pot-smoking lovable loser still struggling with the death of his father nearly 20 years earlier. He’s forced to make tentative steps toward adulthood after his mom (Marisa Tomei) finds a new boyfriend. With Bel Powley as Davidson’s sorta girlfriend. Co-written and directed by Judd Apatow. (Rated R, available on digital services Friday.)

— H.G.


Central Park

Animated musical comedy from the producers of Bob’s Burgers and Frozen’s Josh Gad stars East Oak Lane’s Leslie Odom Jr. as park manager Owen Tillerman, who lives with his family in a house inside Manhattan’s historic oasis, which hotel heiress Bitsy Brandenham (Stanley Tucci) is scheming to buy and fill with condos and retail chains. This week’s episode, “Garbage Ballet,” includes a tribute to trash removal. New episodes post weekly. Friday, Apple TV+.

— Ellen Gray

The Woods

Best-selling author Harlan Coben’s latest project with Netflix is a Polish adaptation of Coben’s 2007 thriller about a prosecutor whose sister disappeared decades earlier while at summer camp. Friday, Netflix.

— E.G.


Award-winning documentary from director Andre Hörmann follows the stories of Destyne Butler Jr. and Kenneth Sims Jr., two talented young boxers from Chicago’s South Side whose lives took very different paths. 8:30 p.m. Friday, Showtime.

— E.G.


The PBS documentary series POV presents this critically acclaimed documentary, which followed Philadelphians Christopher “Quest” Rainey, his wife, Christine’a, and their blended family over the course of a decade. 6:30 p.m. Sunday, WHYY12.

— E.G.

Grantchester on Masterpiece

It’s the fifth-season premiere of the mystery series about an upper-class Anglican priest (Tom Brittney) and a working-class police detective (Robson Green) solving crimes together in and around 1950s Cambridge. This episode offers a rare opportunity to see Green’s character, Geordie, in black tie. 9 p.m. Sunday, WHYY12.

— E.G.


Will the Season 4 finale find a way for Issa (Issa Rae) and Molly (Yvonne Orji) to salvage their friendship? Will Lawrence (Jay Ellis) soon be riding trolleys in San Francisco? Whatever happens this weekend, it’s good to know it’s not over. The fifth season is being written now. 10 p.m. Sunday, HBO.

— E.G.

Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project

This documentary about the Philadelphia activist-turned-wealthy recluse who recorded about a million hours of programming on VHS tapes over three decades makes its broadcast TV premiere on PBS’ Independent Lens. 10 p.m. Monday, WHYY12.

— E.G.

This Philadelphia woman recorded three decades of television on 70,000 VHS tapesOne Day at a Time

Gloria Estefan, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Melissa Fumero guest-star in an animated (and thus socially distanced) episode of the series about three generations of a Cuban American family. The show, a revival of the Norman Lear sitcom that stars Justina Machado and Rita Moreno, made the move to cable after three seasons on Netflix. 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, Pop TV.

— E.G.


Criminal Queerness Festival

The National Queer Theater is going online for its second annual festival, featuring live performances and more. Originally scheduled to start June 9, but pushed back due to participation in the Black Lives Matter protests, the fest will now run June 13-29, with queer performers and activists addressing issues important to the queer community. Among the productions are new plays by Migguel Anggelo, Omer Abbas Salem, 2019 Lambda Literary Award Winner Mashuq Mushtaq Deen, and transgender Jordanian playwright Amahl Khouri. Full schedule at

— H.G.


We Shall Not Be Moved

Opera Philadelphia is making available through summer much of the content from its recent Digital Festival O. In addition to classic The Barber of Seville in a production from 2014, very much worth viewing now ois We Shall Not Be Moved, with music by Daniel Bernard Roumain and a libretto by Marc Bamuthi Joseph. The piece takes the city’s infamous 1985 confrontation with the MOVE organization and explores what has changed since 1985 and, more starkly, what has not. It is available on demand through Aug. 31.

— Peter Dobrin

Inga Saffron on ‘Becoming Philadelphia’

Inquirer architecture critic Saffron talks about her new book, a collection of columns that chronicle the transformation of both Philadelphia’s skyline and the city below it. This virtual event, Wednesday at 7:30 p.m., is sponsored by the Free Library. See it online via Crowdcast, registration at Free.

— E.G.

Da Vinci’s Gallery X

The Da Vinci Art Alliance has launched the Gallery X virtual exhibition space to keep people connected with art during the COVID-19 pandemic. Its Colors of Hope show (through Sept. 30) explores a post-coronavirus world in paintings, drawings, and photos by 12 artists. Curated by Vicente Ortiz Cortez, the digital experience includes a video walk-through, image slideshows, and other interactive tools. See the exhibit at

— Brandon T. Harden


Kill Move Paradise

Wilma Theater is streaming a video of co-artistic director James Ijames’ acclaimed play through June 22 as a fund-raiser for Black Lives Matter Philly. The work focuses on black men who met their deaths at the hands of police. You can access the play through Wilma’s website, at Click on “Make a Donation” to proceed. Any amount accepted.

— Jane M. Von Bergen

Virtual Variety Show

Bucks County Playhouse presents this show on Sunday at 7 p.m. as part of its weekly Playhouse Live! series. This week’s lineup includes Marilu Henner, Tony-nominated John Tartaglia (out of Upper Dublin), and Playhouse executive producer Robyn Goodman, a Tony winner for producing Avenue Q. Original Newsies’ cast member Ben Fankhauser will sing. Watch it free at, on Facebook @BCPTheater, or on YouTube @BCPTheaterinfo.

— J.V.B.

D.I.Y. theater at People’s Light

It’s your turn to be the playwright, or at least to inspire theater. Throughout June, People’s Light in Malvern is asking its audience to respond to weekly prompts with a Sunday deadline. Due this Sunday: Write briefly about a new or unlikely connection forged recently, or, make a list of three meaningful things recently learned. Then, on June 25 at 7:30 p.m., a team of People’s Light actors will translate some submissions into drama for an online show. The one-hour event is free; register at Entries can be submitted via a link on the same page.

— J.V.B.


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