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Actor Nicholas Cage is shown wearing a hat and sunglasses in the desert
From Pivot Magazine

What to read and watch in 2022

From movies to books, here’s what Pivot Magazine suggests you check out in your leisure time

Actor Nicholas Cage is shown wearing a hat and sunglasses in the desertNicholas Cage shines in The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent in which he plays a fictionalized version of himself (Courtesy of Lionsgate)


The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent
Nicolas Cage has carved out one of the more fascinating careers in film history. From Oscar-worthy turns in dramas like Adaptation and Leaving Las Vegas, to mega-star roles in action blockbusters Con Air and Face/Off, Cage has most recently been making a living churning out a string of straight-to-digital B movies—more than 15 roles in the past three years alone. His next film, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, is a wink and nod to a career turn few could have predicted.

Cage, who plays a fictionalized version of himself—an unsatisfied, past-his-prime movie star—finds himself in the middle of a plot straight out of the movies that made him famous: having to rescue his wife and daughter from a billionaire drug lord who paid Cage one million dollars to attend his birthday party.

The reality show that has outplayed, outwitted and outlasted them all returns for its 42nd season in March. Initially slated to air last year, the pandemic delayed production as the cast and crew were unable to travel to Survivor’s dedicated location at Mamanuca Islands, Fiji. Because the season was filmed under a condensed schedule—26 days (including a two-week quarantine) instead of the usual 39—the action promises to be even more fast-paced than usual.

Law & Order
In the spirit of today’s entertainment landscape—where ideas are recycled, reused and rebooted—Law & Order is set to make its return to the small screen. After going off the air in 2010, NBC is reviving the police procedural that has earned more than 50 Emmy nominations. It remains to be seen who from the original cast will appear, but the show is poised to make history upon its return.   

The four co-hosts of podcast No Such Thing as a FishThe co-hosts of No Such Thing as a Fish share their favourite trivia tidbits on the weekly podcast (Photo by Matt Crockett)


Let’s Make a Sci-Fi
What happens when three comedian friends set out to create the perfect, binge-worthy sci-fi show? That’s what Maddy Kelly, Mark Chavez and Ryan Beil are about to find out on Let’s Make a Sci-Fi, a new series from CBC podcasts. Each episode, the trio seek advice and guidance from writers, actors, directors, prop masters and some of the biggest heavyweights in the genre. It’s the podcast that attempts to take a look under the hood of the creative process and the work, talent, planning and luck that goes into getting a show off the ground.

No Such Thing as a Fish
This is the podcast where it’s always trivia night. Started by four researchers for the long-running BBC trivia game show, QI, the podcast has become an entertaining dumping ground for the countless interesting factoids that didn’t make it onto the television program. Each episode, one of the four co-hosts introduces their favourite cutting-room floor trivia to the group and hilarity ensues.

From the creators behind the popular YouTube channel AsapSCIENCE comes the podcast Sidenote. Science educators and hosts Greg Brown and Mitch Moffit, who launched their YouTube channel in 2012 and grew their platform to nearly 10 million subscribers today, take complex topics and present them in engaging, funny and highly consumable ways. Each week, Greg and Mitch take a deep dive into everything from the science behind dreams and space exploration to what happens to your brain during a midlife crisis.


The Man Who Could Move Clouds
In what has been described as a “stranger than fiction” memoir, novelist Ingrid Rojas Contreras shares her story of growing up in Colombia in the ‘80s and ‘90s, her fortune-teller mother, and a spell of amnesia that set her on a course to rediscover her family’s history. The Man Who Could Move Clouds brings readers along for an inventive trip down memory lane, dotted with supernatural encounters and family secrets—while masterfully blending tales of Colombian history along the way.

All About Me!
From his humble Brooklyn, NY upbringing as Melvin Kaminsky, to his service during the Second World War and, of course, a career in Hollywood that most could only dream of, comedy icon Mel Brooks tells the whole tale in his new memoir, All About Me! Whether it’s writing on Sid Caesar’s Your Show Of Shows, scripting, starring and directing iconic films like The Producers, Blazing Saddles and Young Frankenstein, producing The Elephant Man and so much more, when Brooks shares his story it doesn’t take long to find out why “it’s good to be the king.”

1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows
In 1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows, world-renowned artist and activist Ai Weiwei eloquently unpacks his storied life and career while also tracing the life of his father, celebrated poet Ai Qing. Both have been detained by the Chinese government for their art, activism and cries to upend the status quo. Ai Weiwei also tells the history of China over the past century, while bringing the reader into the creative process behind his iconic sculpture work and elaborate art installations.