"Wonka" is the clear headliner this week, having cleared half a billion dollars worldwide at the box office and giving Timothée Chalamet another entry on his movie star resume.
However, it's not the only movie of note this week. A24's "Past Lives" was recently nominated for a Best Picture Academy Award and it lands on Paramount Plus with Showtime this week. You definitely won't want to pass up this Oscar-worthy movie while it's available to stream, especially since it could ultimately bring home the film industry's top prize.
Some of these titles are newly available via digital release, so you can purchase them for a premium price, but for others, all you need is the right streaming subscription. And while you're here, make sure to check out the new TV shows to watch from streamers this week and the best of what's new on Netflix.
Here are the top new movies streaming this week. And be sure to check out our Apple Vision Pro review to see what the future of watching movies looks like.
You'd never know from the trailer, but this Willy Wonka origin story is actually a musical. In fact, there's one point in the trailer where Wonka (Timothée Chalamet) implores Lofty, the Oompa-Loompa (Hugh Grant), not to start singing.
That said, "Wonka" is, by most accounts, a perfectly enjoyable excuse for eating some popcorn and having a movie night with the family. Chalamet's performance in particular as the young chocolatier has been praised by critics, even if the script doesn't always do him favors.
Buy or rent on Amazon now
'The Beekeeper' (PVOD)
Sometimes, all you need is an action movie with a simple premise. "The Beekeeper" stars Jason Statham as Adam Clay, beekeeper to retired schoolteacher Eloise Parker. When a phishing scam upends her life and causes her to commit suicide, Clay goes on a vengeful rampage to take down the criminal organization behind the scam. Oh, did I mention he's a former special-ops agent, retired from the mysterious organization called ... the Beekeepers?
Look, you already know if you want to watch Jason Statham beat people up for 105 minutes or not. And if you do, this movie is definitely worth watching.
Buy or rent on Apple TV now
The feature-length directorial debut of beloved actor Randall Park, "Shortcomings" had me laughing multiple times in just the 120-second-long trailer. Justin H. Min stars as Ben, an aspiring filmmaker who is dating Miko (Ally Maki). Their relationship falls apart due to a combination of factors from Miko going to New York for an internship, to Ben not being a respectful partner. This forces Ben to try and work on himself and see other people, both of which he does ... poorly.
If you want a quirky comedy about finding yourself with some drama sprinkled in, this film from Sundance 2023 is a must-watch on Netflix this week.
Stream on Netflix now
'Past Lives' (Paramount Plus with Showtime)
This romance drama from debut director Celine Song has been scoring rave reviews since it debuted at Sundance last year, so it wasn't a surprise to see it get a Best Picture nomination at the 2024 Oscars. In fact, the real surprise was Greta Lee being snubbed for Best Actress as her performance was often discussed as one of the year's best.
"Past Lives" is semi-autobiographical and tells the story of Nora (Lee) and Hae Sung (Teo Yoo), two childhood sweethearts who fall out of touch until Hae Sung arrives in New York to see her one last time. The only problem? She's already married to Arthur, and despite his jokes, he's not the "evil white American husband" that would be easy for Nora and viewers to hate. This heartbreaking movie is one of the best movies this year, let alone this week, so don't let it pass you by.
Stream on Paramount Plus with Showtime starting Feb. 2
'Dicks: The Musical' (Max)
While "Wonka" may steer clear of its musicality in its trailer, "Dicks: The Musical" steers — nay, crashes — into it. Starring Josh Sharp and Aaron Jackson as Craig and Trevor, this adaptation of their off-Broadway Musical "F****** Identical Twins" is basically what would have happened if Lindsey Lohan portrayed a pair of misogynistic salesmen in "The Parent Trap" rather than two relatively sweet teenagers.
Oh, and it has Megan Thee Stallion doing a musical number. What's not to love?
Stream on Max starting Feb. 2
"Freelance" may be one of the worst-rated movies in the history of Rotten Tomatoes. Starring John Cena as a retired Special Forces operative (a recurring theme this week) who walks away from his job as a lawyer to protect journalist Claire Wellington (Alison Brie) on a mission to the fictional country of Paldonia, this movie scored a whopping 6% "fresh" from critics.
However, it also scored a (relatively) impressive 77% "fresh" with audiences, who praised it for being an entertaining action movie. So, since it's free to Hulu subscribers, there's no better time to see who is right about "Freelance."
Stream on Hulu starting Feb. 2
'Orion and the Dark' (Netflix)
Orion (Jacob Tremblay) is your typical elementary school kid, well ... your typical elementary school kid who is afraid of everything from clowns to the dark. But one night, Dark (Paul Walter Hauser) comes to visit Orion and tries to convince him there's nothing to be afraid of.
If musicals aren't your thing but you need something for a family movie night this week, "Orion and the Dark" is a fun animated adventure that has lighthearted humor for the kids and Werner Herzog as narrator for the adults.
Stream on Netflix starting Feb. 2
'Kokomo City' (Paramount Plus with Showtime)
This Sundance-winning documentary tells the powerful story of four Black trans women and their lives as sex workers. Taking place in New York and Atlanta, it shines a light on the stories of a group that is considered in the margins of the margins of society. But on top of that — it's just really well made.
With star Koko Da Doll being murdered following the film's release, "Kokomo City" has never been more relevant or more prescient. Watch it now while it's available to stream.
Stream on Paramount Plus with Showtime starting Feb. 2
'The Tiger's Apprentice' (Paramount Plus)
Based on the 2003 novel, "The Tiger's Apprentice" stars Brandon Soo Hoo as Tom Lee, a Chinese American boy whose grandmother was a Guardian tasked with protecting a phoenix egg. Tom is suddenly thrust into his grandmother's old role when Mr. Hu (Henry Golding) comes into his life and reveals himself not only to be a tiger but the former apprentice of Tom's grandmother.
If you need something a bit more mature but still family-friendly, this animated adaption is a great option, and one of several offerings from Paramount Plus this week. Plus, you don't even need Showtime for this one.
Stream on Paramount Plus starting Feb. 2
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Malcolm McMillan is a senior writer for Tom's Guide, covering all the latest in streaming TV shows and movies. That means news, analysis, recommendations, reviews and more for just about anything you can watch, including sports! If it can be seen on a screen, he can write about it. Previously, Malcolm had been a staff writer for Tom's Guide for over a year, with a focus on artificial intelligence (AI), A/V tech and VR headsets.
Before writing for Tom's Guide, Malcolm worked as a fantasy football analyst writing for several sites and also had a brief stint working for Microsoft selling laptops, Xbox products and even the ill-fated Windows phone. He is passionate about video games and sports, though both cause him to yell at the TV frequently. He proudly sports many tattoos, including an Arsenal tattoo, in honor of the team that causes him to yell at the TV the most.