Here’s what’s new for home viewing on video on demand, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and other streaming services.
TOP STREAMS FOR THE WEEK
• HBO tackles another epic fantasy series with “His Dark Materials” (TV-14), adapted from the young adult trilogy by Philip Pullman. Ruth Wilson and James McAvoy star with Dafne Keen (the young costar of “Logan”), who plays an orphan in a quasi-steampunk world of talking spirit animals and magic dust. This show is more family oriented than “Game of Thrones” but still has a twist of darkness to it, as well as a strain of religious skepticism. New episodes each Monday night. A second season is already in production.
• “Green Eggs and Ham” (TV-G) turns the Dr. Seuss storybook into an animated series about two opposites on a road trip to save endangered species … and try new things, despite the resistance of Guy (Michael Douglas) to the enthusiasm of Sam I Am (Adam Devine). Also features the voices of Diane Keaton, Eddie Izzard and Jillian Bell; Keegan-Michael Key narrates. Thirteen episodes on Netflix starting Friday.
• “Framing John Delorean” (2019, not rated), a mix of documentary and dramatic recreations, stars Alec Baldwin as the maverick automaker whose rise and fall became the epitome of ambition, greed and hubris in the 1980s. Streaming on Hulu.
• The documentary “One Child Nation” (2019, R) digs into the brutal reality behind the population control law instituted by China and the scars it left behind. On Amazon Prime Video starting Friday.
• Classic pick: in “Rebel Without a Cause” (1955), James Dean became the screen embodiment of the strangled cry of teen alienation in the 1950s. Director Nicholas Ray’s amazing use of widescreen and color create a visual dimension to the explosion of tempestuous emotions, and Dean’s wound-up performances and stumbling delivery perfectly captures the flailing desperation of an adolescent searching for a role model. Streaming on Netflix.
• Cult pick: Also new to Netflix is “Forbidden Planet” (1956), one of the most sophisticated and fantastical science fiction classics of the 1950s, thanks to a story inspired by Shakespeare’s “The Tempest,” an imaginative alien planetscape in delirious Technicolor hues, and a wonderfully weird electronic soundscape of a score.
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• Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham are “Hobbs & Shaw” (2019, PG-13) in the spinoff of the “Fast and Furious” action film franchise. Also on DVD and at Redbox.
• The great Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou (“Hero”) returns to costume drama and epic action with “Shadow” (China, 2018, no rated, with subtitles).
• The five-part documentary series “The Devil Next Door” (2019, TV-MA) delves into the story of a brutal guard at a Nazi concentration camp who hid out for years in the U.S.
• Elizabeth Taylor gave one of her finest performances opposite Paul Newman in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” (1958).
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• Billy Bob Thornton is one “Bad Santa” (2003, R) in the raunchy holiday comedy.
• The documentary “The Biggest Little Farm” (2018, PG) follows a couple who leave the city to start a sustainable farm.
• Kid stuff: “The Pirates! Band of Misfits” (2012, PG) is a clever, goofy animated comedy.
• Criterion Channel celebrates “MGM Musicals from the Golden Age” with 19 films, including seven classics starring Judy Garland.
NEW ON DISC/REDBOX
• “Hobbs and Shaw,” “The Kitchen,” “The Art of Racing in the Rain,” “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark,” “Prey.”
• Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. His reviews of streaming movies and TV can be found at streamondemandathome.com.