Here’s a collection curated by the Associated Press’ entertainment journalists of what’s arriving on TV, streaming services and music platforms this week.
• The 2016 David Ayer-directed “Suicide Squad” may have been rock bottom for Warner Bros.’s DC Comics universe, but the follow-up/rebuild by James Gunn might be a high point. Gunn’s “The Suicide Squad,” which debuts Friday in theaters and on HBO Max, barely alters the title of the previous film and preserves some characters (Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn, Viola Davis’ Amanda Waller). But Gunn has brought an entirely new comic energy to the highly violent, R-rated comic book adaptation, along with the same surprising if demented poignancy Gunn showed to the two “Guardians of the Galaxy” movies. In “The Suicide Squad,” Idris Elba leads a heartfelt if extreme gallery of damaged souls on a dangerous mission.
• For most of Val Kilmer’s professional life, he was documenting it, himself. The documentary “Val,” which begins streaming on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, culls together the actor’s many boxes of tapes to give an intimate view of Kilmer’s life, from “Top Gun” to “Batman Forever” to “Tombstone.” The movie is narrated by Kilmer but his words are voiced by his son, Jack. (Kilmer, 61, has difficulty speaking after throat cancer and numerous trachea surgeries.) The result, by directors Ting Poo and Leo Scott, is an unusually revealing documentary of an often hard-to-understand actor. Reviewing the film, the AP’s Mark Kennedy called it “a remarkably intimate film and a moving one, too.” In an interview by email, Kilmer told me he has no regrets: “I’ve lived and experienced miracles.”
• Lin-Manuel Miranda’s pandemic, movie-wise, has already been quite busy. The “Hamilton” recording was finally released; his “In the Heights” was turned into an acclaimed big-screen adaptation; and he featured in a string of documentaries, including “Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go For It,” “Siempre, Luis” and “We Are Freestyle Love Supreme.” In the new Netflix animated movie, “Vivo,” co-written by “In the Heights” scribe Quiara Alegría Hudes, Miranda is a voice actor and provides original songs. In the movie, which debuts Friday on Netflix, Miranda plays a singing kinkajou named Vivo.
— AP Film Writer Jake Coyle
• Barbra Streisand is opening her music vault again with a collection of 10 previously unreleased tracks coming out Friday. “Release Me 2” is a companion to her “Release Me” album from 2012. This time, Babs sings songs penned by tunesmiths like Burt Bacharach, Barry Gibb, Randy Newman and Carole King. She duets with Willie Nelson on “I’d Want It To Be You” and with Kermit the Frog on the classic “Rainbow Connection.” Other highlights are Streisand singing King’s “You Light Up My Life” and with Gibb on “If Only You Were Mine.”
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• Multi-instrumentalist and jazz composer Gerry Gibbs honors the late Chick Corea on his 13th album, “Songs From My Father.” The collection features Corea and Ron Carter on “Bopstacle Course” and “Sweet Young Song of Love.” The last song on the first disc is “Hey Chick,” also in honor of Corea, a 23-time Grammy Award-winner who died in February at age 79. The song, which features musicians from all four iterations of the Thrasher Dreams Trio, was originally titled “Hey Jim” but Gibbs and his father, Terry Gibbs, agreed to retitle it. The younger Gibbs befriended Corea in his last months of life. “What an honor to have had those last five months becoming friends with him,” he says.
— Entertainment Writer Mark Kennedy
• After a beloved wife’s death turns out to be no accident, her widower goes on the hunt for her killers and the secrets she hid. Netflix’s nine-episode action thriller “Hit & Run,” debuting Friday, stars Lior Raz of the popular (and controversial) Israeli series “Fauda.” The grieving spouse is joined in his international quest by, among others, an ex-lover who’s an American investigative reporter (Sanaa Lathan) and an Israeli police detective (Moran Rosenblatt). Raz and Avi Issacharoff co-created the series with Dawn Prestwich and Nicole Yorkin of the U.S. series “The Killing.”
• Kal Penn’s name is linked to a youthful passion for burgers courtesy of “Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle,” but the Food Network says his “smarts” about cuisine in general made him the right host for “Money Hungry.” Chefs, restaurant critics, cookbook authors and home cooks compete in speed-round tastings aimed at deciphering a dish’s ingredients. Guest panelists are on hand for each episode to offer “flavor favor” lifelines. The five-episode series launches with a sneak peek at 10 p.m. EDT Sunday before settling into its regular 10 p.m. EDT Tuesday slot.
• Jasper Tempest, a Cambridge criminology professor, lives according to the strict rules dictated by his obsessive-compulsive disorder. That’s until a police detective and former student talks him into joining a case that brings his emotions — and surreal moments — to the fore in “Professor T,” based on the Belgian drama of the same name. Ben Miller, who’s the unlucky Lord Featherington on “Bridgerton,” stars in the six-episode series streaming now on the PBS Masterpiece subscription channel on Amazon.
— AP Television Writer Lynn Elber