I never paid that much attention to the way Netflix and other streaming services dole out their new releases before the pandemic, mainly because it never seemed that pressing to get new content that I would inevitably make my way towards eventually. But if I’ve discovered anything now that I pay much closer attention to all of this, it’s that not all weeks are created equal.
New on Netflix
The first week of the month is typically heavy on catalogue titles (which are presumably negotiated for in batches) and little else. This week, Netflix bounces back from a pretty slow week with The Eddy, a show from Damien Chazelle (Whiplash, La La Land) set in the Paris jazz scene. We know Chazelle sure is horny for jazz, but early word on the show (which stars André Holland and Amandla Stenberg) is that it fails to capture the same kind of electricity as Chazelle’s other jazz-centric projects.
Also premiering on May 8 is season 2 of Dead to Me, the beloved black comedy starring Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini as two women who meet in a support group after their husbands die. Season 3 of the Finnish crime show Bordertown hits Netflix on May 11 alongside the star-studded documentary Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics in which stars (including A$AP Rocky, Sting, Nick Kroll and Rosie Perez) tell their craziest drug stories. On a slightly more serious note, Trial by Media is a docuseries that takes a look at the role of media in the outcome of several high-profile trials.
On May 12, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy Vs. the Reverend drops. There’s precious little info out there on what Netflix is calling an “interactive special”, which sounds perilously like a Black Mirror “choose your own adventure” type of deal. The David Spade / Lauren Lapkus vehicle The Wrong Missy (from the fine folks over at Netflix-contract-wringing Happy Madison) drops on May 13. The premise sounds laborious as hell, but if that’s what it takes for a Lauren Lapkus starring vehicle, so be it. The only catalogue addition this week is Gold, the misbegotten McConaughey vehicle that came and went a few years ago.
New on Crave
Speaking of Happy Madison: they made a belated sequel to Bulletproof starring neither Damon Wayans nor Adam Sandler, and you will be able to stream it starting today. Bulletproof 2: Rematch hits Crave on May 8 alongside the Downton Abbey movie and John DeLorean biopic Driven (starring Lee Pace and Jason Sudeikis). One of the more anticipated “prestige TV” events of the year kicks off with I Know This Much Is True, an adaptation of the Wally Lamb best-seller from Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine, The Place Beyond the Pines) starring Mark Ruffalo in a dual role as identical twin brothers; Melissa Leo, Rosie O’Donnell and Juliette Lewis co-star.
New on Amazon
Honey Boy is Shia Labeouf’s extremely cathartic look back at his own life in which he plays his own father, a ne’er-do-well rodeo clown turned ersatz manager to his child-star son (played here by Noah Jupe). It’s kind of a dodgy proposition on paper, but Alma Ha’rel and Labeouf really pull it off. It’s the one major release on Amazon Prime this week along with a couple of comedy specials from Jimmy O. Yang and Anne Edmonds.
New on Criterion Channel
The Criterion Channel celebrates legendary illustrator and title-sequence designer Saul Bass on what would have been his 100th birthday with a 20-film retrospective of his work, ranging from the best-known examples like The Man With the Golden Arm and Anatomy of a Murder to more obscure efforts like Storm Center and Otto Preminger’s last film, The Human Factor.
French director Louis Malle is best known for his far-ranging career in fiction filmmaking, but he also made several documentaries that have remained underseen since their release. Criterion has seven of them on offer as of May 11. The next day, they offer a series curated around the idea of the 1968 Cannes Festival — one that never gave prizes due to the civil unrest sweeping across France. The channel offers up six of the films in competition that year alongside a period documentary about Henri Langlois, president of the Cinémathèque française, and a selection of Palme d’Or winners from across the years. ■
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See what’s new on Netflix Canada here.
For what’s new on Crave, click here.
Find out what’s new on Amazon Prime here.
See what’s new on Criterion Channel here.
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