Top streams for the week
“Avengers: Endgame” (2019, PG-13) brings practically every superhero of the Marvel big screen universe to save the universe and bring the second phase of the interconnected stories to a close. It’s now the highest grossing movie of all time. For all of its sprawling spectacle, it also features quiet moments and even a little humor. On Cable on Demand, VOD, and DVD, and at Redbox.
Elizabeth McGovern is “The Chaperone” (2018, not rated) to young Louise Brooks (Haley Lu Richardson) in early 1920s New York City. The proper society woman from Kansas collides with the free spirited teenage dance student (and future movie icon) while embarking on her own personal journey. “Downton Abbey” creator Julian Fellowes scripts the big screen drama produced by PBS. Streaming on PBS Passport and PBS Masterpiece on Prime Video Channels.
“Diagnosis” develops the medical column written by Dr. Lisa Sanders for the New York Times into a non-fiction series that reaches out to readers to help diagnose patients with unusual symptoms. Seven episodes on Netflix.
The second season the Netflix series “MINDHUNTER” sends the agents (Jonathan Groff and Holt McCallany) of the newly-formed FBI Behavioral Science Unit to investigate the Atlanta child murders of 1979-1981.
Hulu now streams the first season of the vampire comedy “What We Do in the Shadows,” a spin-off of Taika Waititi’s cult movie set in Staten Island, and the limited series “Trust,” based on the kidnapping of John Paul Getty III and starring Hillary Swank, Brendan Fraser, and Donald Sutherland as J. Paul Getty.
Foreign language pick: the limited series “Our Boys” (Israel, with subtitles) dramatizes the investigation of the real-life murders of three Jewish teenagers that sparked the 2014 Israel-Gaza war. New episodes on HBO each Monday.
Pay-Per-View / Video on Demand
Two takes on literary legends: Kenneth Branagh is William Shakespeare in his later years in “All Is True” (2019, PG-13) co-starring Judi Dench and Ian McKellan, and Molly Shannon is Emily Dickinson in the comedy “Wild Nights with Emily” (2018, PG-13).
More family friendly is the DisneyNature documentary “Penguins” (2019, G), narrated by Ed Helms.
Also new: Judi Dench is “Red Joan” (2019, R) in the drama about the KGB’s longest-serving British spy;
- true life drama “Trial by Fire” (2019, R) with Laura Dern and Jack O’Connell;
- “Shadow” (China, 2019, not rated, with subtitles), an historical action drama of court intrigue from Zhang Yimou;
- documentaries “Creating Woodstock” (2019, not rated), on the creation of the most famous music festival of all time, and “Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché” (2019, not rated), about the pioneering French filmmaker.
Available same day as select theaters nationwide is comedy “Driven” (2019, R) starring Jason Sudeikis as the FBI informant who brought down John DeLorean (Lee Pace) and historical drama “Gwen” (2019, not rated) set in Wales during industrial revolution.
Marlon Wayans plays “Sextuplets” (2019, not rated) separated at birth in the new Netflix original film and Darren Lynn Bousman (of the “Saw” franchise) directs the horror film “St. Agatha” (2018, not rated).
True stories: the limited series documentary “Happy Jail” (2019) looks at the shady details behind at the Philippine jail that became famous for its viral Michael Jackson dance video.
Foreign affairs: a Castillian village in Basque country petitions to become “The Little Switzerland” (Spain, 2019, not rated, with subtitles) in this feature comedy.
Streaming TV: “Tiffany Haddish Presents They Ready: Season 1” showcases new comedians. Also new:
- “Knightfall: Season 2,” a drama set in the final days of Knights Templar in 14th century;
Foreign language TV: “Better Than Us” (Russia, with subtitles), a science fiction about a future where androids develop self-awareness and emotions, is the first Netflix original series from Russia. Also new:
- thriller “Green Frontier: Season 1” (Colombia, with subtitles) about a Bogota detective investigating a murder tangled up in magic;
- romantic drama “45 RPM: Season 1” (Spain, with subtitles) set in the rock and roll culture of early 1960s Madrid;
- crime thriller “Victim Number 8: Season 1” (Spain, with subtitles);
- sports drama “Apache: The Life of Carlos Tevez: Season 1” (Argentina, with subtitles);
- crime drama “Bad Guys: Season 1” (South Korea, 2014, with subtitles);
- corporate dramedy “Misaeng: Complete Series” (South Korea, 2014, with subtitles).
Kid stuff: a friendship robot searches the wild world of Gearbot for her best friend in the new animated adventure “Cannon Busters: Season 1” (Japan). Also new:
- animated series “DC Super Hero Girls: Season 1” (2019, TV-Y7) featuring a teenage Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Batgirl, and others;
- animated spin-off shows “Super Monsters Back to School” and “Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus.”
Stand-up: “Colin Quinn: Red State Blue State” (2019, TV-14)
Amazon Prime Video
Ritesh Batra (“The Lunchbox”) directs “Photograph” (India, 2019, PG-13, with subtitles), a romantic comedy set in modern-day Mumbai.
Francis Ford Coppola directs “Tucker: The Man and His Dream” (1988, PG) starring Jeff Bridges, Joan Allen, Martin Landau and Christian Slater.
Stand-up: “Jim Gaffigan: Quality Time” (2019, not rated).
Prime Video and Hulu
The documentary “Andy Irons: Kissed by God” (2018, not rated) profiles the champion surfer who died at the age of 32 after a struggle with bipolar disorder and opioid addiction (Prime Video and Hulu).
“The Amazing Johnathan Documentary” (2019, not rated) follows the final tour of the comic magician diagnosed with terminal heart disease but takes a turn along the way.
Foreign affairs: a meek dog groomer is finally pushed too far by a predatory thug in the award winning “Dogman” (Italy, 2019, not rated, with subtitles), a devastating crime drama from filmmaker Matteo Garone (“Gomorrah”).
Streaming TV: Australian crime drama “Mr Inbetween: Season 1” follows a criminal for hire trying to juggle his personal and professional life and “Find Me in Paris: Season 2” (France, with subtitles) continues the time travel fantasy of a young 1905 ballet dancer in 21st century Paris.
The Sundance award winning “Smoke Signals” (1998, PG-13), a road movie based on the stories of Sherman Alexie, was produced in Idaho and Washington State.
Jason Momoa is “Aquaman” (2018, PG-13) in the fantastical superhero epic about the Prince of Atlantis who must reclaim his birthright to stop a war between the undersea kingdom and the human race. Plus there’s an octopus that plays the drums.
Streaming TV: the second season of the ruthless satire “Succession” is now underway with new episodes each Sunday and “Joint Venture: Season 1” (Brazil, with subtitles), set in an alternate reality where marijuana is legal in Sao Paulo, is streaming on all HBO platforms.
Stand-up: “My Favorite Shapes by Julio Torres” (2019, TV-14).
Available Saturday night is Clint Eastwood’s “The Mule” (2018, R), based on the true story of an octogenarian drug runner for a Mexican cartel.
Laurie Anderson writes and directs “Heart of a Dog” (2015, not rated), a non-narrative rumination on her relationship with her late dog. It’s now streaming along with an interview with Anderson and footage from her 2006 “Concert for Dogs.” Also newly arrived:
- “Blancanieves” (Spain, 2012, not rated, with subtitles), an inventive retelling of Snow White as a silent-movie melodrama in the 1920s world of bullfighting royalty;
- musical “For Me and My Gal” (1942) with Judy Garland and Gene Kelly in his film debut;
- “Three by Frank Borzage” including “A Farewell to Arms” (1932) with Gary Cooper and “Man’s Castle” (1933) with Spencer Tracy.
Angela Lansbury and James Earl Jones star in “Driving Miss Daisy” (2014), a stage production filmed for TV. Now streaming on BroadwayHD.
Free streams: Jon Hamm is a disillusioned diplomat pulled back in to service to save the life of a friend in “Beirut” (2018, R), a thriller set in the undeclared warzone of 1982 Beirut. It’s now streaming on Hoopla, along with the documentary “Creating Woodstock” (2019, not rated), romantic drama “I’ll See You in My Dreams” (2015, PG-13) with Blythe Danner and Sam Elliott, and psychological drama “Enemy” (2014, R) with Jake Gyllenhaal.
New on disc this week:
“Avengers: Endgame,” “Wild Nights with Emily,” “All Is True,” “Red Joan,” “Trial by Fire”
Now available at Redbox:
“Avengers: Endgame,” “Trial by Fire”
Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. His reviews of streaming movies and TV can be found at http://streamondemandathome.com.