Movies, TV, and books we're into this week

Surface-Pro-Microsoft-Store (Image credit: Windows Central)

The end of March is just around the corner. That means warm weather, baseball, and flower and plant growth aren't far off, at least for many of us. It also means now is a great time to stay inside and enjoy a good watch or read, before you start to feel guilty for not taking advantage of the sunshine and lack of snow. Below you'll find the latest collection of media recommendations from your friend at Windows Central.

If nothing hits your target, there are plenty of additional suggestions from weeks past at the link below.

More media recommendations from Windows Central


Spider-Man: Into The Spiderverse

Recommended by Al Sacco, managing editor

I'm not much of a comic book guy. But I am, or was, a Spider-Man guy. The Spider-Man comics were the only ones I ever really got into. And the Spider-Man movies are the only comic book films I go out of my way to watch. So as soon as _ Spider-Man: Into The Spiderverse_ became available to rent last week, I was all over it.The story of Peter Parker has been told so many times, it kind of feels old and boring at this point. But this movie flips the well-known tale upside down, using a completely wacky plot in which Spider-Men of all different types, from different dimensions, unite to battle a bevy of the series' traditional villains. It's unique in that aspect, but it also features more than one, or even two or three, villains in the same story, which breaks the Spidey mold, as well. And its modern and original animation style is compelling and really well done. The film's makers took what is a stale story and made it fresh again, using plot tweaks, crazy animation, and a wacky storyline — even for a Marvel comic. I really enjoyed it.

Free Solo

Recommended by Cale Hunt, staff writer

I've been watching free soloist Alex Honnold scale mountains without any sort of safety contingent for years on YouTube, so when I heard that National Geographic produced a documentary led by E. Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, I was understandably intrigued. I kind of slept on the release, but when it won an Oscar I knew I had to see it.Free Solo is all about the process leading up to and including the first ever climb of El Capitan with no ropes. Saying the climb is not easy is an enormous understatement, and I'm intrigued to see how the filmmakers managed to capture his ascent when any equipment or other distractions could have caused Honnold to make a critical mistake.

The Fast and the Furious

Recommended by Rich Edmonds, Staff reviewer

Fast and Furious movies continue to be made and are well received by fans, but the first movie released in 2001 is where the series is at its best. The majority of the film is recorded at night and there's more of a focus on tuned vehicles, illegal street racing and the different way of life for those who participate.In order to fully enjoy the current movies, you'll want to check out the series from its beginning to understand each character. The oldest is also my favorite, packing in everything you'd expect from such a action-packed blockbuster.


Dragon Ball Super

Recommended by Dan Thorp-Lancaster, news editor

Look, I'm a bit of an anime nerd. And the series that started it all was Dragon Ball Z when I was hooked to Cartoon Network's Toonami block in grade school. So needless to say, when I heard the franchise was getting a new series run a few years ago, I was stoked.But, life being busy and all, I haven't had time to catch up. That stops this week: I got my hands on the first couple of seasons of Dragon Ball Super, and I'm ready to adventure with Goku and friends again.Yes, Dragon Ball is not much more than an endless arms race of power, with Goku looking defeated then somehow managing to tap into some unseen potential to eventually overcome his foes. But sometimes you need an injection of mindless action and flashy visuals, and I'm totally okay with that. If you're not an anime fan, it's not likely that yet another Dragon Ball series will make you one. But I'm looking forward to Super's mix of Dragon Ball Z action with the original Dragon Ball's oddball humor.


Mass Effect: Revelation

Recommended by Rich Edmonds, Staff reviewer

Fan of the Mass Effect franchise? You should check out the books that compliment the wealth of knowledge and stories available in the mains series of games. I've just got done reading through Mass Effect: Revelation for the third time, by Drew Karpyshyn.Revelation sets the scene for the main series of Mass Effect games, preparing the galaxy by explaining the backgrounds of all races and how humanity discovered Prothean technology and further developed into a space faring civilization.

The Border — Don Winslow

Recommended by Al Sacco, managing editor

If you're squeamish or easily offended, you probably want to stay way away from this book. It's the third part in the author's "Power of the Dog" trilogy, which tells the story of America's war on drugs, and with the people and countries that supply those drugs, over decades and literally thousands of pages. And it's quite simply amazing.You definitely need to read the first two books, Power of the Dog and The Cartel, before the new one. And you should, because The Border is the definition of an intelligent page-turner. It definitely shows some of the clear biases of the author, but whether you lean the same way politically, Winslow's intimate understanding of how America lost the drug war, even if it doesn't realize it, is both impressive and educational. And it comes at a time when many American cities are literally rotting from the inside out, due to the scourge of opiates and various derivatives like fentanyl, which is a direct result of the war on drugs.The story is heartbreaking, smart, disturbing, insightful, well written and completely unforgettable. Seriously, read this book.

The World on Sunday — Margaret Brentano and Nicholson Baker

Recommended by Asher Madan, contributing news writer

Joseph Pulitzer was an icon in the newspaper industry, and The World on Sunday pays homage to that. The photographs celebrate the artistry and graphic design that transformed Joseph Pulitzer's New York World at the turn of the twentieth century, presenting a wide array of cartoons, caricatures, typography, photography, drawings, maps, and other artwork from a variety of legendary illustrators.

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Remik Szul