Now Streaming: Movies and TV to Watch at Home This Weekend – May 1
There isn’t any reason to go out to the theater this weekend, right? Sure, Avengers: Age of Ultron is out and it’s going to be a huge hit and you’ll probably see it, but why make the trek out this weekend with the full theaters, obnoxious theatergoers and risks of being sold out? We all know Age of Ultron will still be around in a few weeks—and, hey, maybe you can use a free pass to see it then instead. Besides, there are plenty of great movies and television shows you can watch this weekend from the comfort of your own home. Check out the newest films to hit Netflix, Fandor and other streaming services below!
Bluebird (Lance Edmands, 2013)
Set in a quiet, dreary Maine logging town, Bluebird is about the effects of a tragic event on a community. The film stars Chicago stage actress Amy Morton (who you probably recognize as the mom from Rookie of the Year) as a school bus driver whose possible negligence leads to the death of a young child. Like the film in whole, she gives an understated and powerful performance. First-time filmmaker Lance Edmands, who has worked primarily as an editor, shows an uncanny emotional maturity by never going for over-the-top moments, instead letting the melancholy environment and characters set the film’s tone. The cast is rounded out by an excellent cast, including John Slattery, Margo Martindale and Adam Driver. We saw Bluebird during its limited release earlier this year and thought it found “the right balance between atmospheric undertones and understated storytelling”. It is basically the perfect counter-programming to the big scale loud action film everyone else will be watching this weekend.
Other titles new to Netflix this week:
Chef’s Table (Series)
Legally Blonde (Robert Luketic, 2001)
National Treasure (Jon Turteltaub, 2004)
Watchers of the Sky (Edet Belzberg, 2014)
Fifty Shades of Grey (Sam Taylor-Johnson, 2015)
Or perhaps instead of venturing out to the theater to see the biggest film of you year, you can catch up with the first big hit of the year. Perhaps you were interested (or should I say “curious?”) to see this steamy adaptation of E.L. James’s veiled Twilight fanfic, but were terrified to see if with, you know, other people around. Well, now you have the chance buy Fifty Shades of Grey on Amazon Prime before it comes to DVD and Blu-ray. They also have an “unrated versions” available – it’s three minutes longer than the theatrical version, so I bet those are three really sexy minutes. In all seriousness, Amazon Prime and Video On-Demand have began offering some films for purchase before they are released on DVD or can be seen elsewhere. This could be an exciting venture for the ever-growing reach of streaming services.
Other titles new to Amazon Prime this week:
Big Trouble in Little China (John Carpenter, 1986)
Let’s Kill Ward’s Wife (Scott Foley, 2014)
The Professional (Luc Besson, 1994)
Ravenous (Antonia Bird, 1999)
8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963)
This week’s collection on Fandor highlights the great Italian actor Marcello Mastroianni with some of his most famous films and best performances. Included is perhaps his best work with his closest collaborator, Federico Fellini. 8 1/2 is among the wildest, funniest and most complicated films ever made about filmmaking. Mastroianni plays Guido Anselmi, a celebrated film director who struggles through his latest project while escaping into his crazy, sexy fantasies. It is probably the most Fellini film made by Fellini, highlighting his best dramatic and most bawdy elements. The film wouldn’t work without Mastroianni, though – watching his particular sense of cool being upended is fantastically enjoyable. Featuring iconic scene after iconic scene, all with Fellini’s creative world and character building, 8 1/2 is rightly considered one of cinema’s all time greats. But remember: as with all Fandor collection films, it is only available until the following Sunday!
Other titles new to Fandor this week:
Divorce Italian Style (Pietro Germi, 1961)
The Entire History of the Louisiana Purchase (Joshua Oppenheimer, 1998)
La Notte (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1961)
Tokyo Playboy Club (Yôsuke Okuda, 2011)
Paddington (Paul King, 2014)
The most surprisingly enjoyable children’s film since 2011’s adaptation of Winnie the Pooh, Paddington is much more charming and fun than expected. Based on the beloved literary character, the film involves a talking bear cub who leaves his South American home in search of the British explorer who befriended his aunt and uncle years before. Without much of a guide, he ends up at Paddington Station in London and meets a family willing to take him in temporarily. Like Winnie the Pooh, Paddington works because it doesn’t reach into the new trend of children’s films that have become increasingly loud and broad. It is a pretty simple movie, with a bit of action, but mostly laid back and warm. Ben Whishaw is a perfect voice for the curious bear, while live-action actors Hugh Bonneville and Sally Hawkins are as wonderful as ever. Even if you don’t have kids yourself, Paddington is worth a look.
Other titles new to VOD this week:
Adult Beginners (Ross Katz, 2004)
The Boy Next Door (Rob Cohen, 2015)
The Gambler (Rupert Wyatt, 2014)
Ride (Helen Hunt, 2014)