What to stream: ‘The Dark Crystal’ on Netflix, ‘Carnival Row’ on Amazon, ‘Rocketman’ and ‘The Last Black Man’ on VOD

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …

Taron Egerton plays Elton John in Rocketman (2019, R), a biographical drama that takes on the rock legend’s rise, his collaboration with lyricist Bernie Taupin (Jamie Bell), and his drug addiction in scenes out of movie musicals. It’s directed by Dexter Fletcher, who took over Bohemian Rhapsody without credit, and written by Billy Elliot and War Horse screenwriter Lee Hall. The music is great, the choreography is marvelous, and for my money it’s a better film than Bohemian Rhapsody.

Smaller and more intimate is The Last Black Man in San Francisco (2019, R), a poetic and personal drama about family, legacy, and our connections to our roots in the era of gentrification. San Francisco has never been photographed like this. Filmmaker Joe Talbot won best director award at the Sundance Film Festival, one of the film’s two awards.

Both films on Cable On Demand, VOD, DVD, and at Redbox.

Orlando Bloom is a police detective and Cara Delevingne a fairy warrior in exile in Carnival Row (TV-MA), an Amazon Prime Original series set in a Victorian London-esque world where humans treat the supernatural refugees of a brutal holocaust as inferiors. It’s a mix of murder mystery, dark fantasy, and social commentary, and is slow moving but visually impressive. Eight episodes streaming on Prime Video.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (TV-PG) a new Netflix Original limited series from The Jim Henson company, is an epic prequel to the 1982 fantasy performed entirely by elaborate Muppet creations and designed with fantastical imagery. Louis Letterier directs the odyssey of the innocent Gelflings to discover the secrets of the power-hungry Skeksis and the impressive voice cast includes Taron Egerton, Nathalie Emmanuel, Alicia Vikander, Awkwafina, Mark Hamill, and Simon Pegg. Not for young children. Ten episodes on Netflix.

Netflix also offers the feature-length companion documentary The Crystal Calls: Making the Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, which takes viewers behind the scenes of the landmark production.

Kirsten Dunst stars in On Becoming a God in Central Florida, a satirical look at the American Dream and the con of multilevel marketing. New episodes arrive on all Showtime platforms on Sunday nights.

Delta Burke, Dixie Carter, Annie Potts and Jean Smart play TV’s favorite interior decorator decorators with Southern charm, good taste, and sitcom sass in Designing Women (1986-1993). All seven seasons of the hit series created by Linda Bloodworth-Thomason now stream exclusively on Hulu.

Pay-Per-View / Video-On-Demand

Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019, PG-13) continues the American take on the Japanese giant monster franchise with battles against Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah. Also new:

Available same day as select theaters nationwide is the horror film Itsy Bitsy (2019, not rated) with Elizabeth Roberts, Bruce Davison, and Denise Crosby.


Christina Milian is an American executive who wins a rundown New Zealand inn in Falling Inn Love (2019, TV-PG), the latest Netflix Original to feed the hunger for old fashioned romantic comedy. From “Cruel Intentions” director Roger Kummel.

The Congress (2013, not rated), starring Robin Wright as an aging actress who sells her likeness to a film studio, is a science-fiction satire that uses a mix of animation and live action to explore identity, image and moviemaking in the modern era.

The A List: Season 1, a British supernatural mystery for young adults, comes to Netflix from BBC.

True stories: Travis Scott: Look Mom I Can Fly (2019, not rated) follows the Houston rapper’s rise to fame.

More streaming TV: The Good Place: Season 3 with Kristen Bell and Ted Danson arrives a month before the final season debuts on TV. Also new:

International affairs: Kardec (Brazil, 2019, not rated, with subtitles) dramatizes the story of Allan Kardec, the founder of Spiritism. Also new:

International TV: two young musicians team up in the animated musical drama Carole & Tuesday: Season 1 (Japan, with subtitles). Also new:

Kid stuff: True and the Rainbow Kingdom: Wild Wild Yetis, the third season of the animated fantasy series for young kids, along with new seasons of Trolls: The Beat Goes On! and Mighty Little Bheem: Season 2.

Stand-up: Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones (2019, TV-MA). Stick around after the credits for bonus footage.

Amazon Prime Video

Angourie Rice is a teenage department store clerk in Bruce Beresford’s Ladies in Black (2018, PG), a coming of age drama set in 1959 Australia costarring Julia Ormond and Rachael Taylor.

Sofia Boutella stars in the hallucinatory horror film Climax (2018, R) from boundary-pushing filmmaker Gaspar Noe

Oscar Isaac stars as a Mossad agent assigned to bring Adolph Eichmann (Ben Kingsley) to trial for war crimes in Operation Finale (2018, PG-13), based on a true story.

Also new: Martin Scorsese’s family friendly Hugo (2011, PG) with Asa Butterfield and Ben Kingsley;

True stories: the documentary Trumbo (2008, PG-13) weaves archival clips with dramatic readings from the letters of the blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo.

Prime Video / Hulu

Matthew McConaughey puts his smarmy charm to great use in The Lincoln Lawyer (2011, R), a meaty legal thriller adapted from the Michael Connelly novel (Prime Video and Hulu).


How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2018, PG), the third film in the animated fantasy series, sends its young heroes to save a secret society of dragons.

Matt Smith plays controversial photographer Robert Mapplethorpe in Mapplethorpe (2018, not rated).

Captain Fantastic (2016, R) earned Viggo Mortensen an Oscar nomination as a devoted father of a family coming off the grid to come to grips with the world outside their little Walden.

More streaming TV: action drama S.W.A.T.: Season 2 with Shemar Moore;


Mortal Engines (2018, PG-13), based on the young adult steampunk novel by Philip Reeve, is a post-apocalyptic spectacle where cities have become war machines on wheels. Produced and co-written by Peter Jackson.

Available Saturday night is Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018, R), an offbeat drama based a true story starring Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant in Oscar-nominated performances.

Showtime Anytime

The fifth and final season of The Affairwith Dominic West and Maura Tierney now is underway with new episodes arriving Sunday nights. Also new is the music documentary Hitsville: The Making of Motown (2019, TV-14).


The sixth and final season of Power with Omari Hardwick is now running on Starz. New episodes each Sunday.

Acorn TV

Keeping Faith: Series 2, the mystery series from BBC Wales original starring Eve Myles, makes its U.S. debut on Acorn with new episodes each Friday. Also new is Thorne: Complete Series (2010) with David Morrissey.

The Criterion Channel

British Hitchcock” on The Criterion Channel spotlights the early career of Alfred Hitchcock with 13 features, including his silent masterpiece The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (1927), his debut sound film Blackmail (1929), and little-seen classics Rich and Strange (1931) and Young and Innocent (1937).

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Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. He writes the weekly newspaper column Stream On Demand and the companion website, and his work appears at RogerEbert.com, Turner Classic Movies online, The Film Noir Foundation, and Parallax View.

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