Many indoor theaters are still closed, but new streaming movies are coming to entertain you and your family during socially distanced times.
This weekend, HBO Max premieres a coming-of-age road comedy with a pregnant high schooler and her ex-BFF, a new biopic celebrates the life and music of Helen Reddy, and Netflix offers a triple feature: a horror-comedy sequel, a youthful French drama and a documentary about the dangers of social media.
If you’re feeling the itch to get back to the movies in person, and there’s a drive-in or it’s safe enough to return to your local theater, the Selena Gomez-produced romantic comedy “The Broken Hearts Gallery” arrives starring Geraldine Viswanathan and Dacre Montgomery.
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But if you’d rather stick closer to home, here’s a rundown of new movies hitting streaming and on-demand platforms this week, for every cinematic taste:
If you need a female-fueled, feel-good comedy: ‘Unpregnant’
The abortion tale takes a different tonal tack than the similarly themed – and much more somber – “Never Rarely Sometimes Always.” Haley Lu Richardson stars as a pregnant Missouri 17-year-old who talks her estranged ex-bestie (Barbie Ferreira) into driving to a clinic in New Mexico. The film leans more into friendship than pro-choice matters, as the girls face hurdles such as a wacky evangelical couple and their own emotional baggage.
Where to watch:HBO Max
If your mom seeks an empowering throwback: ‘I Am Woman’
The film follows Helen Reddy (Tilda Cobham-Hervey) from struggling Australian immigrant and single mom in 1960s New York to ’70s musical superstar and activist who finds her voice – and fame – with one massively popular theme song for women’s rights. Cobham’s strong performance and some groovy retro musical numbers save it from being a humdrum biopic.
Where to watch: Apple TV, Google Play, FandangoNOW
If you want an international roller coaster of emotions: ‘Cuties’
Netflix’s promotional poster caused some controversy, but the French coming-of-age story is a worthwhile and thought-provoking watch. Surrounded by issues within her conservative family, Amy (Fathia Youssouf) is an 11-year-old Senegalese Muslim immigrant who becomes enamored with the dancing of her classmates. Amy joins their crew and her rebellious streak grows as director Maïmouna Doucouré deftly takes on the hypersexualization of little girls by uncomfortably putting it right in your face.
Where to watch:Netflix
If you’re down for a fun-filled splatter-fest: ‘The Babysitter: Killer Queen’
Three years ago, “The Babysitter” was an underrated gory horror comedy about 12-year-old Cole (Judah Lewis) being tapped for sacrifice by his babysitter’s Satanic death cult. The sequel is a killer revisit, with Cole now in high school dealing with the aftermath as well as hormones, and a weekend getaway with his best friend (Emily Alyn Lind) goes awry when cult members return and a mysterious new girl (Jenna Ortega) enters the picture.
Where to watch:Netflix
If you need more reasons to rethink Twitter and Facebook: ‘The Social Dilemma’
Those who aren’t on social media won’t likely jump on it anytime soon after seeing this bleak documentary that’s a hybrid between talking heads in the computer science/Silicon Valley space and semi-cheesy dramatizations. They don’t even need the latter: Experts detail the dangers of viral conspiracy theories, the negative impact on children and the insidious behaviors of manipulative corporations, among other things that will make you go offline ASAP.
Where to watch:Netflix
If you’ve been wondering what Wil Wheaton has been up to: ‘Rent-A-Pal’
The “Stand By Me” stalwart plays a creepy Mister Rogers type in this freaky, 1990-set horror film about a lonely dude named David (Brian Landis Folkins) whose love life has taken a back seat to caring for his mom with dementia. He buys a self-help VHS tape featuring the oddly friendly Andy (Wheaton), and it’s a bit of a slow burn until David’s “friendship” with his videotape pal rockets way past disturbing.
Where to watch:Apple TV, Vudu, FandangoNOW
If you’re a fan of adult fairy tales: ‘Entwined’
Soon after a Greek doctor (Prometheus Aleifer) moves into his new job in a remote village, he becomes enchanted by a mercurial woman (Anastasia Rafaella Konidi) who lives in the forest and has a strange skin condition. A relationship develops and she’s got some secrets that come out in an interesting and dark fable about love and nature.
Where to watch: Apple TV, Vudu, Amazon