What to stream: ‘The Rise of Skywalker’ on VOD, ‘Tales from the Loop’ on Amazon, ‘Onward’ on Disney+

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” (2019, PG-13) brings the final trilogy in the odyssey begun by George Lucas in the original 1977 “Star Wars” to its conclusion with a rollercoaster ride of […]

’20 Feet From Stardom’ on Netflix

The poster for the music documentary 20 Feet From Stardom (2013, PG-13) advertises the appearances of Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Mick Jagger, Stevie Wonder and Bette Midler, ironic since the documentary is really about the back-up singers who performed with them and many others, always outside of the spotlight. Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer, Claudia […]

Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Larry Fishburne in 'The Matrix'

‘The Matrix’ trilogy on Netflix

The Matrix (1999) has become such a touchstone of American pop culture—referenced, copied, parodied, and parroted—that it’s hard to remember just how new and different and distinctive it was when it debuted in 1999. Which is not to say that it is completely original. Image Tron as a Greek Myth, or Sim City as an […]

What to stream: ‘Birds of Prey’ and ‘The Way Back’ early on VOD, ‘Portrait’ and ‘Baghdad Central’ on Hulu, free kids shows on Amazon

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   The rush of theatrical movies to early streaming continues with a sizable slate of features now on video-on-demand at a premium price. A couple of new arrivals stand out: the purely escapist “Birds […]

Gong Yoo stars in the South Korean zombie film directed by Yeon Sang-ho

‘Train to Busan’ – Korean zombie classic on Netflix and Amazon Prime

You could call Train to Busan (South Korea, 2016) “Zombies on a Train”—it certainly makes a catchy logline and it frames the premise accurately and succinctly—but it reduces this fleet, fierce, unexpectedly human thriller to a mere gimmick. Apart from the slyly eerie prologue, the film opens without any hint of the viral rampage to […]

What to stream: ‘Self Made’ and ‘Feel Good’ on Netflix, ‘Little Fires’ on Hulu, ‘Plot Against America’ on HBO Now

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   Octavia Spencer plays C.J. Walker, the African-American businesswoman who built a business empire pioneering hair care products for black women at the turn of the 20th century, in “Self Made: Inspired by the […]

The original ‘The Wicker Man’ on Netflix

The original The Wicker Man (1973) begins as a murder mystery and turns into something else entirely. Edward Woodward stars as the stiff English police detective who is sent to a remote Scottish island to investigate the disappearance of a young girl and discovers a culture living a happy “heathen” lifestyle, lorded over (literally) by […]

What to stream: Agatha Christie on Amazon, ‘Lost Girls’ and ‘Carmen Sandiego’ interactive on Netflix, ‘Dangerous’ on Hulu

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   Rufus Sewell plays a successful businessman and reckless womanizer whose lovers start to turn up dead in “The Pale Horse” (2020, TV-14), a two-part adaptation of the Agatha Christie novel. Set in 1960s […]

The stop-motion animation dark fairy tale 'Coraline' directed by Henry Selick

Last Chance: ‘Coraline’ on Netflix

Coraline (2009) opens on a rag doll efficiently taken apart by hands of skeletal steel (like Edward Scissorhands but with menacing needles for fingers) and then turned inside out and recreated in the image of the blue-haired heroine Coraline. It’s produced in the old-school stop motion animation style of articulated dolls and hand-crafted props increasingly […]