These are my favorite movies and TV show from June-December 2022.
Insidious 1 & 2 (Amazon & Netflix)
I'd never seen the Insidious movies. However, my younger brother watched them and told me they were creepy(which piqued my interest). In June, the first part was available on Prime Video, and the sequel and third films were on Netflix. I binged all three, but I preferred the first two as they wrapped up the Lambert family storyline.
Black Phone (movies)
The next Blumhouse movie on this list. The movie pundits I follow talked about this Black Phone's great word of mouth from early screenings. Saw this in theaters and was amazed at Ethan Hawke's villainous performance. His 2nd turn as a bad guy in 2022(first in Moon Knight on Disney+ months earlier, but much better here).
Umbrella Academy S3 (Netflix)
I like the Umbrella Academy and its different take on the superhero genre. The protagonist dysfunctional family consists of odd but likable characters, all with their own agendas, coming together to save the world from destruction. I've rewatched the footloose scene at the beginning of this season multiple times on Tik Tok.
Gray Man (Netflix)
An action-packed thriller which is also one of the most expensive movies Netflix has produced. Gray Man is a bombastic summer-style movie usually reserved for theaters which I, like everyone else, enjoyed at home. At least tune in for Chris Evan's fantastic mustache.
Paper Girls (Amazon)
I read the first volume of this comic years ago and loved it. So when this adaptation showed up on Prime Video, I had to watch it. It wasn't perfect and downright ridiculous at times, but a fun sci-fi ride. Too bad Paper Girls was canceled after one season. I still want to read the entire comic run.
Old Man S1 (Hulu)
Senior citizen Jeff Bridges is a war criminal/John Wick-type soldier in hiding. When he's discovered and goes on the run, Dan Chase(Jeff Bridges)is not a man you want to cross paths with. John Lithgow is also in this series; his scenes are incredible. Unfortunately, halfway through the filming of season one, the pandemic happened, and Jeff Bridges had (real-life)health issues. The show was initially supposed to be ten episodes but shortened to seven. However, the finale was satisfying. Hopefully, Mr. Bridges will regain his health, and we can get a 2nd season of this excellent show.
The Boys S3 (Amazon)
The Boys is the show I recommend to anyone who wants to watch the current, best TV program in the superhero genre. Placing in Nielsen's top 15 original streaming programs of 2022, this Prime Video exclusive was seen more than any Marvel or DC TV show. Anthony Starr's performance as Homelander and how his story continues to unfold is tremendous-highly recommended.
Stranger Things 4 pt 2 (Netflix)
Stranger Things 4 was the summer event for me. Another show I ate up and relished.
Light & Magic documentary (Disney+)
In August, I watched two documentaries discussing content from my youth. First, Light & Magic spoke about the formation of the ILM studio and its creation of beloved film series such as Star Wars and Jurassic Park. In addition, it delves into stop-motion photography which motivates me to make my own action-figure stories which I'm currently doing.
Milestone Media documentary (HBO)
Milestone Generations was the second documentary. The peak of my comic fandom(and for many) was the early 90s. This film chronicled a collection of black creators establishing their own company and publishing comics with their homegrown black superheroes. I never bought Milestone comics, but watching this doc and discovering the modern inner-city stories told, is up my alley. Fascinating documentary.
Sandman S1 (Netflix)
I halfway read the first volume of Vertigo's critically acclaimed Sandman comic run during the early 2000s, but it didn't connect with me. Fast forward to July 2022, the TV series was announced to premiere on Netflix in August. When the show debuted, I listened to comic book aficionado Robert Meyer Burnett's quick review on John Campea's podcast, and he loved it. He said some shots were identical from the comic book panels to the TV screen, which made me curious. My favorite scene is the battle between Dream(the Sandman)and Lucifer.
Thirteen Lives (Amazon)
A dramatization of the true story of 13 people who got stuck in a cave in Thailand and the rescue mission which followed. When this movie came on Prime video, two documentaries on Netflix and Disney+ premiered discussing the same event. Thirteen Lives was riveting, and I was surprised this wasn't in theaters.
Cobra Kai S5 (Netflix)
Cobra Kai is fun, and I will continue to watch as long as the same creative team and cast stay in place. This past season, Terry Silver and his Cobra Kai students were great villains with shades of gray. The upcoming season six was announced and said to be the last. All good things must end, and that doesn't disappoint me when you go out on top, which hopefully Cobra Kai will.
A Predator story done right. Prey shows how one can take an established sci-fi horror franchise and make it simple yet effective. A similar formula might work for another iconic movie villain-the Terminator.
One of my earliest childhood memories is from Kiss' Phantom of the Park movie, where the band stands next to a wooden roller coaster. I've never been a big Kiss fan but watching them on season 8 of American Idol(2009), Adam Lambert performing alongside the rock legends in the finale, brought back old memories. Kisstory is a 'Behind The Music' type documentary narrated by Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons. A story that educated me on the group's formation, the tours, and the numerous hits they've had over the years. An engrossing four-hour doc which I only put down in-between parts because I had to go to bed.
Elvis (HBO Max)
I saw this in theaters in March but was tired and fell asleep various times. However, after rewatching Elvis at home, it quickly became one of my favorite films of 2022. The combination of Austin Butler's performance and Baz Luhrmann's direction was an experience I'll rewatch years later. I regularly listen to Austin Butler's rendition of the 'Vegas Rehearsal/That's All Right' song from the soundtrack.
Everything Everywhere All at Once (PPV)
I'd heard movie critics rave about this movie around the beginning of the year. By September, the film still had yet to come to a streaming service, so I bought it on pay-per-view. Adventure, sci-fi, comedy, drama. I found myself cheering and crying at different points while watching this movie. Another favorite from 2022.
I watched this and 'Smile' a few weeks apart. Barbarian is the superior of the two. One of the several small budgets horror films released in 2022 which scored big profits. Highly enjoyable. Even though Barbarian was a better movie than 'Smile,' the latter gave me trouble sleeping.
Werewolf by Night (Disney+)
This was a surprise, and I'd like to see the MCU do more. A 'special presentation' introducing a group of characters or revisiting established ones like the 'Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special.' The Werewolf by Night himself gave me Wolverine vibes.
House of the Dragon (HBO Max)
I'm late to the party regarding Game of Thrones—digging into the whole HBO series, like many others during the pandemic. House of the Dragon fills the Targaeryan backstory and doesn't disappoint. I also enjoyed the focus on fewer characters and seeing them grow over time.
Green Lantern: Beware My Power (HBO Max)
I found this while browsing the DC section on HBO Max. DC, hands down, has excellent animated movies with adult overtones. A space adventure that delves deeper into Green Lantern John Stewart and Adam Strange, whom I haven't heard about in a while.
See S3 (Apple TV+)
To me, Jason Momoa's best work is his DCEU Aquaman appearances, and See on Apple TV+. I loved the first two seasons; this 3rd and final chapter was excellent. Watching this post-apocalyptic world where most of the population is blind and living within tribes in the wilderness was intriguing. I recommend See if you're looking for a great, complete sci-fi/action show.
Spirited (Apple TV+)
It was November, the holidays were around the corner, and there was a giant billboard for Spirited, displaying Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds, near the Port Authority bus terminal in Times Square. I thought, these two actors have made me laugh plenty before, so let's check this out. This Apple TV+ exclusive was delightful and had a different spin on the Scrooge story. A heartwarming musical, which I didn't mind.
Andor S1 (Disney+)
Andor beats any live-action Star Wars TV currently on Disney+. It started slow, but the intrigue and story build as we see the forming of the Rebellion against the Empire. The prison episodes with Andy Serkis were tremendous.
The English (Amazon)
Another great Amazon Prime Video show that no one seems to talk about. A stoic and violent western starring Emily Blunt. The English put its hooks into me from the first episode. Rafe Spall is also a great villain who you love to hate. Excellent and gorgeous-looking show.
I'm entertained by these Hulu dramas based on actual events. Dopesick with Micheal Keaton was sad yet amazing. The Dropout with Amanda Seyfried was eye-opening. Tommy & Pamela was amusing. Finally, Pistol, based on the beginnings of the Sex Pistols band and the punk scene in the UK, was interesting, informative, and plays to making your dreams come true even if you don't know how to play the guitar.
White Lotus S2 (HBO Max)
I watched the first season based on movie critic Grace Randolph's recommendation and found it awkward, funny, and intelligent with a murder mystery thrown in. As soon as the first episode ended for season 2, I was there every following Sunday to gobble up the next installment. The White Lotus season 2 has a dark comedic charm, and I love the soundtrack by Cristobal Tapia de Veer with all the weird chanting.
Avatar: Way of Water (movies)
As I mentioned, Stranger Things season 4 was an event for me. Avatar 2 was as well. It was long-winded at parts, especially the sections dealing with the whales, but great drama, action, and peak science fiction. Being transported to Pandora again didn't disappoint.
Finally, favorites of 2022 Overall(the media below did not have to be released in 2022 to be included).
Games (I had a blast playing these games and completed them)-
Halo Infinite (2021) (Xbox-Game Pass)
Wolfenstein: The New Order (2014) (Xbox-Game Pass)
The Gunk (2021) (Xbox-Game Pass)
The Woods(the entire series) (published 2014-2017) (Boom! Studios)
Wolverine: Enemy of the State (published 2005) (Marvel)
Yellowstone S1-S4 (Peacock)
Reacher S1 (Prime Video)
Peacemaker S1 (HBO Max)
The White Lotus S1 & S2 (HBO Max)
As We See It S1 (Prime Video)
See S3 (final season) (Apple TV+)
Ozark (final season) (Netflix)
Strangers Things 4 parts 1 & 2 (Netflix)
House of the Dragon S1 (HBO Max)
The Boys S3 (Prime Video)
The Last Kingdom S5 (Netflix)
Everything Everywhere All At Once
Top Gun Maverick
Thirteen Lives (Prime Video)
Gray Man (Netflix)
Turning Red (Disney+)
Green Lantern: Beware My Power (HBO Max)
Legend of Vox Machina (Prime Video)
Light & Magic (Disney+)
Thoughts, comments? Do so below.