How to Spend Every Waking Moment of Memorial Day Weekend on Movies & TV

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Let's face it: the weather is not cooperating in much of the country when it comes to barbecues and whatnot for Memorial Day 2013. So, obviously, you should do nothing but consume endless culture instead. And there's a lot out there! But, really, there's only so much time you have in a long weekend. We've clocked it for you.

Friday Evening 

You finish work and you immediately want something to divert your attention. Something mindless, but not totally despicable. You head to the multiplex and strap in for Fast & Furious 6. Sure, there are a lot of cars doing crazy things, but you can agree it looks pretty good nonetheless. (It's currently at 74 percent fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.) That lasts two hours and ten minutes, so factoring in dinner, that should take you most of the evening. If if you're really giving in to this thing and your dinner consisted of popcorn and Paul Walker, maybe you catch up on Maron on IFC. That's at 10 p.m. Eastern. But you have a long weekend ahead of you. You want to pace yourself. 


You wake up around 11 a.m. because it's a holiday weekend so you say why not. You start the morning with a little Law & Order: Special Victims Unit because there's a marathon on USA because of course there is. Presumably you will see some children around. It's a holiday so there are always children around, whether or not they belong to you. You must find something to amuse the children, so you take them to see Epic, one of the three movies battling for this weekend's crowded box office. This one does not involve a decapitated giraffe and you've already seen the one with Vin Diesel, so Epic it is. Plus, you are sort of interested in hearing what Beyoncé sounds like as the voice of a fairy. That lasts you about two hours. You are desperately in need of something a little less, well, animated, so you ditch the kids, you head to an art house theater and you go see Alex Gibney's Julian Assange documentary We Steal Secrets. You're done with that by dinner time, and you retreat home for an early night's sleep because, naturally, you have to prepare for Arrested Development. That starts at 3 a.m. Eastern, and you're going to hold off and be fresh, but first you're going to honor the 30th anniversary of Return of the Jedi opening in the U.S. by watching it on DVD. Because of course you have Return of the Jedi on DVD. Look at you.

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You've already made your decision that you're going to wake up early and watch all of the new Arrested Development today. You wake up at 7 a.m. and start at 8 a.m. Those will last you for about eight hours. You take an hour's break around the halfway point for lunch and you are done with the Bluths by 5 p.m., but you thought that was pretty great, didn't you? Exhausted, you nap, and you wake up in time to put on HBO and watch Behind the Candelabra, which Richard Lawson liked, at 9 p.m. You follow that up with your recorded version of the latest Mad Men. Then, because you're a glutton for punishment, you go to your DVR and watch the two-hour finale of Smash. (See this tweet for how you may look after you finish that show.)


You really maybe overdid it a little with the Arrested Development and everything after on Sunday, so you wake up around noon, but somehow the sound of Megan Hilty is still ringing in your ears. You need to make it stop. You decide to need to watch something quiet and thoughtful that will begin to end your weekend on a nice note. (You've got a long way to go here, though, and you've foregone the barbecue long ago.) By 2 p.m. you're settling in for a screening of Before Midnight, ready to reunite yourself with Celine and Jesse. You can feel your heart swelling as you listen to them gab, but about two hours later the movie is over. You stick around your art house for What Maisie Knew, the well-reviewed modern-day Henry James adaptation starring Julianne Moore, which opens in a number of cities his weekend. After that's over, you stick around for one more intellectual film: the Israeli Fill the Void, about ultra-Orthodox women. (Note your ability to see the aforementioned three films depends on what city you are in. It helps if you're in New York.) It's around 7 p.m. You're time is running out and you're running out of options. You must make a decision. Your choice? The Hangover: Part III. You regret it the moment the giraffe gets decapitated, but you've made your choice. And with that, your weekend comes to an end. That went pretty fast, you think.

Have you enjoyed yourself? Please note that TV Guide has a list of Memorial Day marathons on television, which can occupy your time should rain and/or boredom really get to you despite your already busy schedule.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.