Screen savors: The Boss, the Fixer and the ‘AbFab’ gals

YES Docu is showing a number of documentaries about musicians in honor of the August concert season.

Musician Bruce Springsteen performs "Knockin' On Heavens Door" during the 2015 MusiCares Person of the Year tribute honoring Bob Dylan in Los Angeles, California. (photo credit: MARIO ANZUONI/REUTERS)
Musician Bruce Springsteen performs "Knockin' On Heavens Door" during the 2015 MusiCares Person of the Year tribute honoring Bob Dylan in Los Angeles, California.
Here’s a sentence I never thought I would write: In the upcoming Netflix version of the Israeli series The Good Cop, Tony Danza, the beloved TV star best known for the sitcoms Taxi and Who’s the Boss?, has been cast in the role originally played by Moshe Ivgy. The show, which chronicles the misadventures of an inept policeman, is being produced for Netflix by Andy Breckman, the creator of the detective series Monk. The casting for the lead, who is portrayed by Yuval Semo in the Israeli version, has yet to be announced. As I’ve said, it’s all one big show, but now it’s all one big international show.
To celebrate the August concert season, YES Docu is showing a number of documentaries about musicians. These movies will begin running on YES VOD on August 6.
Bruce Springsteen In His Own Words is a celebration of the musician’s life and work. It goes over some of the same ground that The Boss covered in his comprehensive and very revealing autobiography, in which he discussed his difficult relationship with his father, who suffered from severe depression and psychosis; his early career and fierce ambition; and his relationships with the musicians he worked with over the years. Springsteen gave the filmmakers home movies that have never been screened before, and there is archival footage and interviews as well.
Leonard Cohen: Bird on a Wire is a documentary composed of concert footage of Cohen performing in Europe in 1972, when he was 37. The movie was shown just a few times in the mid-1970s, and then was discovered not long ago in an aluminum container in Hollywood. It has been reworked, and the soundtrack has been improved. For fans of the singer/songwriter, who died last year, this is a mustsee.
The band that was performing when the terror attacks took place all over Paris in 2015 had the unusual name of Eagles of Death Metal. Ninety people were killed at their concert at the Bataclan theater, and the band decided to return to Paris and finish their performance a year later. This movie, Eagles of Death Metal: Nos Amis (Our Friends), is directed by Colin Hanks, the son of Tom Hanks; he has appeared in Mad Men and the Fargo series. The film looks at the band before, during and after the horrific attack that changed their lives.
If you missed Norman: The Moderate and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer, Joseph Cedar’s critically acclaimed movie starring Richard Gere, when it was in theaters, you can see it on HOT VOD and YES VOD starting on August 10. While Gere might seem like an odd choice for an older, New York Jewish wheeler-dealer, he has never been better, or seemed more relaxed, than in this role. The supporting cast includes Lior Ashkenazi as a down-on-his-luck Israeli politician Norman befriends; Steve Buscemi, whom you may remember dying several strange deaths in Coen brothers movies and who starred in the series Boardwalk Empire as a distinguished rabbi; Dan Stevens of Downton Abbey as a billionaire’s assistant; and Josh Charles, who played Will on The Good Wife, as a mogul.
The movie was filmed in Jerusalem and New York and is very concerned with the complex relationship between American Jews and Israelis. This is a subject that concerns many of us, but I can’t remember another movie that has examined it.
If you’re looking for a comedy film to watch with your family, you might want to see Napoleon Dynamite, a cult comedy that is showing on HOT Fun on August 5 at 1:25 p.m. It’s still so popular that you can find “Vote for Pedro” graffiti on walls all over Israel, a reference to an important plot point.
Another funny film, the movie version of Absolutely Fabulous, is showing on August 8 on YES 3 at 10 p.m. It plays like a pretty good episode of the series, in which the crazed heroines, Patsy (Joanna Lumley) and Edina (Jennifer Saunders), have to flee London after they are accused of killing supermodel Kate Moss — don’t worry, no one really dies — and head to Europe, where they hope to marry billionaires. If you like the show, you’ll like the movie.