Your weekend dining and entertainment guide

Friyay!: What to watch

Park Seo-joon (above left) and Choi Woo-shik in Youn Stay.
Raya And The Last DragonPHOTO: THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY
Park Seo-joon (above left) and Choi Woo-shik in Youn Stay.
Park Seo-joon (above left) and Choi Woo-shik in Youn Stay.PHOTO: VIU
Park Seo-joon (above left) and Choi Woo-shik in Youn Stay.
Age Of Samurai: Battle For JapanPHOTO: CREAM PRODUCTIONS/FACEBOOK

ANIMATION

RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON (PG)

114 minutes/Opens today in cinemas and available on Premier Access on Disney+

A new Disney princess is in town. Raya (voiced by Kelly Marie Tran, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, 2017) is the first South-east Asian princess in the Disney universe.

The team behind the fantasy epic travelled to countries such as Indonesia, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam to find inspiration. The film is set in the mythical land of Kumandra, which was populated by humans and their friends, the dragons, centuries ago. The dragons sacrificed themselves to stop the evil force, the Druun.

In the present day, human greed causes the Druun to resume their attacks. To stop them, Raya must find the last dragon Sisu (Awkwafina, Ocean's 8, 2018).

Awkwafina, who is also a rapper, is known for her comedy chops, so expect her to bring levity to her role.


VARIETY SERIES

YOUN STAY  4/5

Available on Viu. Airs Wednesdays, 10.30pm, on tvN (StarHub TV Channel 824 and Singtel TV Channel 518)

The South Korean variety series takes a cast of A-listers, led by veteran actress Youn Yuh-jung (Minari, 2020), to the countryside to run a traditional Korean homestay for foreigners.

In the team are charming young actors Park Seo-joon (Itaewon Class, 2020) and Choi Woo-shik (Parasite, 2019), actress Jung Yu-mi (The School Nurse Files, 2020) and seasoned actor Lee Seo-jin (Lovers, 2006).

It is comforting to see these leading men and women deeply committed to their new roles. They take time to learn recipes to whip up sumptuous meals for guests, think up ideas for new desserts and try their best to converse with guests in English.

The numerous light-hearted moments - the cast members share a warm, easy dynamics - and autumnal countryside scenery make this series a breeze to watch.


DOCUMENTARY SERIES

AGE OF SAMURAI: BATTLE FOR JAPAN (NC16)

Netflix

Viewers who like historical re-enactments will find plenty of it in Age Of Samurai: Battle For Japan.

The docu-series has done its research, getting quotes from historians and experts to paint an accurate picture of ancient Japan and how legendary samurais such as Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi came to power.

The scenes are sometimes gory, reflecting the bloody times of ancient Japan.

The re-enactments are done by Japanese actors in their native language and make the series more exciting than a cut-and-dried historical documentary. Just don't expect world-class acting.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 05, 2021, with the headline 'Friyay!: What to watch'. Subscribe