Top streams for the week
A family faces dark, twisted, shadow versions of themselves in Jordon Peele’s eerie, ambitious “Us” (2019, R). Like his horror-satire hit “Get Out,” it’s a wicked piece of social commentary through a horror movie lens. Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke star as the protective parents and Elizabeth Moss has a delicious supporting role as a catty best friend and her gleefully sadistic double. On Cable On Demand, VOD, DVD, and at Redbox.
The new Showtime Original Series “City on a Hill: Season 1,” a fictional drama inspired by real-life events in early 1990s Boston, stars Kevin Bacon as a corrupt FBI agent who teams up with an idealistic district attorney (Aldis Hodge) to root out the systematic corruption in the city’s criminal justice system. “Homicide: Life on the Streets” veteran and “Oz” creator Tom Fontana is the showrunner. New episodes on Showtime Anytime Sunday nights.
The World War II drama “Das Boot” (2018, with subtitles) continue the story of the Oscar-nominated 1981 movie with a new submarine crew (headlined by Rick Okon and August Wittgenstein) and Vicky Krieps as a German woman caught between loyalty to her country and to her brother working with the Resistance. The international production is in English, German, and French and costars Lizzy Caplan and Vincent Kartheiser. 8 episodes on Hulu.
Miles Teller is an L.A. County cop by day and vigilante assassin by night in the hyper-stylized crime thriller “Too Old to Die Young,” an Amazon Original limited series from Danish filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn. Leave logic behind for this mix of ultra-violence and art-house attitude costarring John Hawkes and Jena Malone. 10 episodes on Amazon Prime Video, but the filmmaker himself suggests jumping right into the middle of it.
The indie thriller “Cop Car” (2015, R) stars Kevin Bacon as a corrupt sheriff whose vehicle (complete with a dead body in the trunk) is stolen by two boys for a joyride. Director Jon Watts went on to direct the energetic live-action “Spider-Man” revival starring Tom Holland.
Cult pick: “Neon Genesis Evangelion” (Japan, 1995-1996), the long unavailable 26-episode animated science fiction series, is now on Netflix along with the feature-length follow-ups “Evangelion: Death (True)²” (Japan, 1997) and “The End of Evangelion” (Japan, 1997). The landmark epic is presented with English and Japanese soundtracks and optional subtitles.
Pay-Per-View / Video on Demand
“Hotel Mumbai” (2018, R), starring Dev Patel and Armie Hammer, dramatizes the real-life 2008 terrorist attack on the Taj Hotel in Mumbai, India. Also new:
- Hamony Korine’s stoner comedy “The Beach Bum” (2019, R) with Matthew McConaughey and Snoop Dogg;
- animated adventure “Wonder Park” (2019, PG) with the voices of Jennifer Garner and Mila Kunis.
Available same day as select theaters nationwide are the dramas “Burn Your Maps” (2016, PG-13) starring Vera Farmiga and Jacob Tremblay as mother and son on a road trip to Mongolia and “Holy Lands” (2019, not rated) with James Caan as an American who moves to Nazareth.
Paul Walter Hauser is a reclusive hip-hop prodigy and Anthony Anderson a security guard who encourages him in “Beats” (2019, TV-MA), a Netflix Original musical drama set in Chicago’s East Side.
True stories: “The Edge of Democracy” (Brazil, 2019, not rated, with subtitles) examines the fall of two Brazilian presidencies.
Foreign affairs: the modern submarine thriller “The Wolf’s Call” (France, 2019, not rated, with subtitles) starring Mathieu Kassovitz and Omar Sy comes direct from European theaters to Netflix. Also new:
- thriller “Blood Will Tell” (Argentina, 2019, with subtitles);
- young adult drama “Right Here Right Now” (Germany, 2018, not rated, with subtitles) set in the Berlin club scene.
Streaming TV: the Netflix Original Series “Mr. Iglesias: Season 1” features comedian Gabriel Iglesias as the latest eccentric high school teacher to inspire a group of misfit kids. Also new:
- long-running medical drama “Grey’s Anatomy: Season 15” with Ellen Pompeo;
- FX action drama “Shooter: Season 3” with Ryan Phillippe;
- reality crime dramas “Girls Incarcerated: Season 2” and “The Confession Tapes: Season 2“;
- comic reality show “The Casketeers: Season 2” from New Zealand.
Foreign language TV: science fiction drama “Ad Vitam: Season 1” (France, with subtitles) stars Yvan Attal as a cop investigating a rash of teen suicides in an overpopulated world where people live virtually forever. Also new:
- “Bolívar: Season 1” (Colombia, with subtitles), an historical telenovella about the exploits of South American revolutionary leader Simón Bolívar (played by Luis Gerónimo Abreu);
- crime drama “Yankee: Season 1” (Mexico, with subtitles) about an American (Pablo Lyle) who becomes a drug lord in Mexico;
- political thriller “Chief of Staff: Season 1” (South Korea, with subtitles), which drops new episodes every Friday and Saturday;
- supernatural thriller “Dark: Season 2” (Germany, with subtitles);
- family friendly musical drama “GO! Live Your Way: Season 2” (Argentina, with subtitles).
Stand-up: “Adam Devine: Best Time of Our Lives” (2019).
Amazon Prime Video
Idris Elba makes his directorial debut with “Yardie” (2018, not rated), a British crime drama adapted from the bestselling novel by Victor Headley and set in the Jamaican-British subculture of London.
Streaming TV: the legal soap opera “Suits: Season 8” is the first season since Meghan Markle left the show to become British royalty.
Foreign language TV: “Final Life: Season 1” (Japan, with subtitles), a crime drama about an odd couple team an elite investigation unit, and young adult romantic drama “Tokyo Alice: Season 1” (Japan, with subtitles) were both originally produced for Amazon Prime Japan. Also new: reality comedy show “Documental: Season 3” (Japan, with subtitles).
True stories: “Score: A Film Music Documentary” (2017, not rated) offers an introduction to the history of film music and great composers of Hollywood (it remains almost entirely focused on American movies).
Robert DeNiro directs “The Good Shepherd” (2006, R), which condenses the history of the CIA into the odyssey of one patriot (Matt Damon) who grows up with the agency. Angelina Jolie, Alec Baldwin, and De Niro costar. Also new:
- coming of age comedy “Tadpole” (2000, PG-13) with Aaron Stanford and Sigourney Weaver;
- romantic drama “A Walk on the Moon” (1999, R) with Diane Lane and Viggo Mortensen;
- romantic comedy “Next Stop Wonderland” (1998, R) with Hope Davis.
Streaming TV: The fourth and final season of “12 Monkeys” brings the SyFy time travel series to a conclusion with an ending that ties up the stories and the constantly shifting timeline. Also new:
- episodes of “Good Trouble: Season 2,” the spinoff of “The Fosters” from Freeform, arrive each Wednesday;
- reality series “The Riveras: Season 3” from Telemundo.
Indie drama “The Hate U Give” (2018, PG-13) stars Amandla Stenberg as black teenager who witnesses the shooting death of a childhood friend by a nervous young patrolman. Regina Hall, Russell Hornsby, and Anthony Mackie costar.
Zendaya stars as a high school kid navigating the world of anxiety, sexuality, identity, and social pressure with a diverse group of fellow students in the new HBO original series “Euphoria.” New episodes Sundays nights.
True stories: “Wig” (2019, TV-MA) surveys the art and culture of drag through 20 years of the New York drag festival Wigstock.
Available Saturday night is the affectionate, low key crime drama “The Old Man & the Gun” (2018, PG-13) starring Robert Redford, Sissy Spacek, and Casey Affleck.
Jake Gyllenhaal is a ruthless video newsman “Nightcrawler” (2014, R), a savage neo-noir with an Oscar-nominated screenplay. It’s new on Showtime Anytime along with the military action thriller “Mile 22” (2018, R) starring Mark Wahlberg and the documentary “16 Shots” (2019, TV-14) about the 2014 police shooting of a teenager and the ensuing cover-up.
The Criterion Channel spotlights over two dozen films by Japanese master Akira Kurosawa, from post-war crime thrillers “Drunken Angel” (1948) and “Stray Dog” (1949) to his breakthrough classics “Rashomon” (1950) and “Seven Samurai” (1954) to his late career masterpiece “Ran” (1985). All with subtitles.
Also new: Stephen Frears’s Oscar-nominated “My Beautiful Laundrette” (1985, R) featuring the breakthrough performance by Daniel Day-Lewis, Lee Chang-dong’s “Secret Sunshine” (South Korea, 2007, with subtitles) with award-winning actress Jeon Do-yeon, and Cristian Mungiu’s “4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days” (Romania, 2007, not rated, with subtitles), which won the top prize at Cannes.
“Perfect” (2018, not rated), a bizarre sci-fi headtrip starring Garrett Wareing and Abbie Cornish, debuts on VOD exclusively on Breaker. It’s produced by Steven Soderbergh and directed by Eddie Alcazar.
New on disc and at Redbox this week:
“Us,” “Wonder Park” “The Beach Bum,” “Hotel Mumbai”
Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. His reviews of streaming movies and TV can be found at http://streamondemandathome.com.