Streaming highlights November 19 to 23: The Wheel Of Time, The World According To Jeff Goldblum and Oasis Knebworth 1996

RIDING HIGH: Rosamund Pike plays sorceress Aes Sedai in new fantasy series The Wheel Of Time. Below, actor Jeff Goldblum in The World According To Jeff Goldblum.
RIDING HIGH: Rosamund Pike plays sorceress Aes Sedai in new fantasy series The Wheel Of Time. Below, actor Jeff Goldblum in The World According To Jeff Goldblum.

THE WHEEL OF TIME

Amazon Prime

IN the past 18 months Netflix has released two fantasy series in Cursed and Shadow & Bone which carried the hype of being "the next Game Of Thrones."

Of course neither came close to matching GoT's zeitgeist appeal. Two weeks ago Cursed had its second season cancelled, and while Shadow & Bone is scheduled to return next year, it hardly moved the needle in streaming land.

Amazon Prime is ready to throw its sword into the fantasy series ring with an adaptation of US author Robert Jordan's series TheWheel Of Time. It may be no GoT, but TheWheel Of Time is a significant improvement in quality on the aforementioned shows.

Rosamund Pike (I Care A Lot) plays sorceress Aes Sedai, who is searching for the reincarnation of the "Dragon", a person who will either save or destroy the world. Meanwhile, an army of savage warthog-like creatures are attempting to bring the Dragon into their clutches.

It's impossible to escape the Lord Of The Rings similarities in plot and tone. Even the spoken prelude delivered by Pike to explain the history of the conflict sounds like Cate Blanchett doing Galadriel.

The Wheel Of Time does break away from the fantasy genre's traditional use of female characters by installing women like Aes Sedai and Nynaeve al'Meara, played by Kiwi Zoe Robins, as the main protagonists.

Again, The Wheel Of Time is no GoT, but it could be the best fantasy series since.

QUIRKY: Actor Jeff Goldblum.

QUIRKY: Actor Jeff Goldblum.

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO JEFF GOLDBLUM

Disney+

GENERALLY I've enjoyed the quirky cool Jeff Goldblum brings to his many roles in Jurassic Park, Independence Day and The Fly and his 2018 jazz album with The Mildred Snitzer Orchestra was terrific fun.

However, the documentary series The World According to Jeff Goldblum is overly self-indulgent.

Each 30-minute episode explores the culture and history of everyday topics like sneakers, tattoos, magic and dogs.

Goldblum approaches his interview subjects with disarmed curiosity, much like Louis Theroux. By whereas the journalistically-trained Theroux knows when to remove himself, Goldblum's constant performing for the cameras distracts from the topic.

OASIS KNEBWORTH 1996

Paramount+

OVER the course of two nights 250,000 people packed into a rural property in Knebworth to watch UK rock giants Oasis at their zenith.

The tickets sold out in less than 24 hours and many critics consider it the Woodstock of the '90s.

Oasis Knebworth 1996 is part fan documentary, part live concert film as we take a nostalgic road back to a time before social media and mobile phones and when buying a ticket meant camping out or constantly ringing the landline.

The first third of the film focuses on reenactments of fan stories who attended the gigs, which does drag unnecessarily.

However, the footage from the soundcheck is a rare treat for any Oasis fan and the concerts are breathtaking, jampacked with hits like Live Forever, Don't Look Back In Anger, Champagne Supernova and Wonderwall. Nobody does rock'n'roll like this anymore.

This story The Wheel Of Time spins familiar fantasy first appeared on Newcastle Herald.