Each week we find new movies streaming online at the start (and throughout) the week, as the Tuesday release schedule for digital releases is buoyed by streaming services releasing titles throughout the week. This week, we've got a highly hyped Anime film, a shocking bit of horror that should delight the frights folks, an animated Netflix family film and even a filmic adaptation of a musical.
The most interesting film of the bunch is Belle, a sci-fi anime movie with a ton of escapism. Elsewhere in the week, HBO's got a treat for musical theater fans, and Netflix has a YA movie that takes place during that magical summer before college. Oh, and if you want more? The still-fresh list of new shows and movies to watch from this past weekend is still here for you — and there's also details on how to watch Moon Knight episode 6 online and see the finale.
Those folks with Prime? You might want to watch The Wilds season 2, but we don't blame you if you need to catch up on the first season first (just know it draws comparisons to Yellowjackets and Lost). And in terms of movies we can't wait to see come to streaming? At the top of our wish list is getting Doctor Strange 2 on Disney Plus before July.
Without further previews, let's break down the seven movies you should watch this week:
We hear a lot of chatter about the metaverse these days, and it's mostly ignorable to be honest. But sci-fi anime movie Belle proposes a metaverse reality that's worth considering.
Suzu, who is having trouble dealing with the passing of her mother, finds her passions in a virtual world known as U. There, she reimagines herself as the pink-haired Belle, and becomes a massively popular singer.
Belle, which looks so fantastical that you'll wish you'd seen it in theaters (I personally am still kicking myself I missed its theatrical run), is all about the hidden identity. While is Suzu afraid of her audience realizing she's just your average teen, she's also going to take a chance to find out who's behind the dangerous dragon identity that's tearing U apart.
Stream it now on Amazon (opens in new tab) and other video on demand platforms
Spring Awakening: Those You’ve Known (HBO Max)
November 2021 gave Spring Awakening fans something to truly cheer for. Jonathan Groff, John Gallagher Jr. and Lea Michele, along with many other familiar faces reunited for a one-night performance of the beloved musical. And, so, since tickets and flights weren't cheap, HBO knows that many want to see both the performances and the behind-the-scenes intensity.
Enter Spring Awakening: Those You've Known, a documentary that merges performances from that evening with cast interviews and moments from behind the curtain. The cast and crew also talk about the work that it took to make Spring Awakening — nobody's first pick for a successful play thanks to its plethora of third-rail topics — a show and a star-making one at that. This documentary film also shares archival footage showing the actors during the earliest days of the play.
Stream it on HBO Max (opens in new tab) starting Tuesday (May 3) at 9 p.m. ET
Last Survivors (Hulu)
Survivalists and preppers may spend many of their hours wondering what it's like to be Jake (Drew Van Acker) and his son Troy (Stephen Moyer). The two somehow managed to survive wars that have led to apocalyptic events, and it's the world Troy grew up in. And Jake has raised his son to live with fear, but to also marry the first potential spouse he comes across.
One day, though, Troy needs to get antibiotics to help his dad, which is why he comes across Henrietta (Alicia Silverstone), who looks to help him. She then winds up breaking Troy's world views, as it seems like dear ol' dad's been filling his boy's brains with lies. It looks like it's thematically related to The Last of Us, only with more gaslighting.
Stream it on Hulu (opens in new tab) starting Thursday (May 5)
Along for the Ride (Netflix)
The path to college has been carefully paved for Auden (Emma Pasarow), a successful student who doesn't even realize how much she needs a joyride. Enter Eli (Belmont Cameli), a hunkish dude who really wants to help Auden live her own life — breaking free of the limits of her own mother's world.
So, while mom (Andie MacDowell) thinks that Auden is spending her summer with her father, the happy accident of meeting Eli opens up a new world of opportunity. There's just the confusing matter of who the heck Eli is. Auden's friends are worried about her secrecy, but it's actually Eli who refuses to show his own hand. Kate Bosworth and Dermot Mulroney costar.
Stream it on Netflix (opens in new tab) this Friday (May 6)
In other news, two animated shows from the big red streaming machine are among the three Netflix and The CW shows that just got canceled.
Every once-in--a-while, the 1950s' favorite canine comes out of hiding and into the spotlight. Yes, Marmaduke is back, this time in a CGI animated adventure with a particular visual style that has zero intent of going close to the uncanny valley. The plot of the film seems fairly standard, as Marmaduke's family is sending him to training and competitions to get him into shape.
Maybe all of that does nothing for you, but maybe the casting will. Pete Davidson, yes, that Pete Davidson, is voicing Marmaduke. Maybe someone plied him with some Scooby Snacks? J. K. Simmons (Whiplash) voices Marmaduke's rival Zeus, and David Koechner (Anchorman) is Marmaduke's owner Phil.
Stream it on Netflix (opens in new tab) starting May 6
Helping defenseless local birds was such a nice thing for kids to growing up. The Finnish body horror film Hatching presents a story that's nothing like that. 12-year-old Tinja (Siiri Solalinna) learns a whole lot about the dangers of fowl friends after a crow flies into her family's pristine living room.
Not only does her mother (Sophia Heikkilä) dispose of the bird in a cruel way, but this moment pushes Tinja into the wilderness where she finds an egg. Possibly feeling responsible for said egg (is it from the same bird that just passed?) Tinja brings this egg home with her.
But in between ballet lessons, Tinja starts to realize that this is no mere egg. It glows red, and even becomes larger than Tinja. The surprise of what comes next is so unnerving that we're sure horror fans will be talking about Hatching for years to come.
Stream it on Hulu (opens in new tab) starting Friday (May 6)
Dear Evan Hansen (HBO Max)
If the aforementioned Spring Awakening documentary wasn't enough for theater kids and theater adults this week, HBO Max is doubling down. This Friday, it delivers the filmic adaptation of Steven Levenson's Dear Evan Hansen, the story about an awkward teen who is struggling so hard he has to write his own words of encouragement in the morning. Then, bullying leads to a classmate's tragic suicide, and the rest is musical theater history.
Nobody's saying that Ben Platt — who stars as the titular character — knocked it out of the park; quite the contrary. The general consensus is that not only was Platt miscast — the makeup used to make him look like a high schooler was widely mocked — but that Platt's father Marc (a producer on the film) could have been responsible for his son getting the role, in a bit of nepotism.
That said? Audiences loved it, giving it an 88% on Rotten Tomatoes, while CinemaScore polling gave the film an A-, and PostTrak recorded a 78% positive score.
Stream it on HBO Max (opens in new tab) starting Friday (May 6)