Special Delivery

Extra! Extra! Read all about it (Captain Phillips Reunion Alert!): These 2020 Christmastimes, Tom Hanks is gonna have some special News of the World. Directed by Paul Greengrass.

It’s five years after the end of the Civil War; Hanks will be playing Capt. Jefferson Kyle Kidd in the film, a veteran of three wars, who now moves town to town as a non-fiction storyteller, sharing news of presidents and queens, glorious feuds, devastating catastrophes, and gripping adventures from the far reaches of the globe.

It is in the plains of Texas that he crosses paths with Johanna (German newcomer Helena Zengel, from System Crasher), a 10-year-old taken in by the Kiowa people six years earlier and raised as one of their own. Johanna, hostile to a world she’s never experienced, is being returned to her biological aunt and uncle against her will. Kidd, Hanks man that he is, agrees to deliver the child where the law says she belongs. And so, as the two venture deeper and deeper into hundreds of miles of unforgiving wilderness, Kidd and Johanna face tremendous challenges of both human and natural scale, on a search for a place that either of ’em can call home.

Based on the best-selling National Book Award finalist by Paulette Jiles, News of the World will have some sort of theatrical release – has Hollywood not learned from Tenet? I mean, where is Tenet? – and an international premiere on Netflix on Dec. 25.

I don’t know. Here in San Francisco, we are now officially on our second COVID-19-related lockdown (not that we having been home since late winter/early spring), until Jan. 4, if I’m not mistaken.

So I don’t see how a Christmas Day at the movies can happen.

Just give us the movies now how we can get them now. Nothing can replace the movie-the-ay-ter experience, and I look forward to enjoying a film in a movie theater again soon, but now? Now we stay home – for real this time – to keep more and more of us from spreading this not-so-novel-anymore coronavirus around and more and more of us from dying.

The time for solidarity is right now. Stay home, save lives. Eat local, support local. Check on your smaller stores, when you don’t find paper towels at the chain groceries. Check on yourself. And enjoy all the quality movies that are coming our way (might as well).

We got News of the World now. Happiest Season is already streaming on hulu. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is coming up next week. Chaos Walking has to premiere online somewhere soon, right?

OK now you know, stay home. “See you” at The Prom.

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