9 best new movies to watch this week: Black Adam, The Fabelmans and more (Dec. 13-19)

Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam in Black Adam
(Image credit: Courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures)

We've got a ton of big new movies to watch this week, so tell your friends and family that you're gonna be a little late. Especially if you're a big fan of comic book movies. Yes, at the top of the list we have Black Adam, the newest DC movie to hit the theaters, and one that spent forever getting made.

A passion project for star Dwayne Johnson, Black Adam moves some big puzzle pieces around in the DCU and introduces a lot of new characters. But, let's be honest, Black Adam is no critics' favorite. 

So, this being awards season, we're happy to announce that three much buzzier movies can now be watched from home. Today, both Bones and All and The Fabelmans both quietly arrived on video-on-demand sites, while The Banshees Of Inisherin (and Black Adam) made it to HBO Max (truly the home box office for the masses). Now that all are streaming, some of these movies might make our best movies of 2022 list.

This week also gets a recent release showing up on Prime Video, with The Black Phone. Already making its way from one of the best streaming services to another, this horror movie (recently seen on Peacock) is all about high schoolers trying to escape a disturbed man, and they rely on supernatural powers.

What's coming to Netflix, I hear you ask? Well, it's got its own award-courting film, with Alejandro G. Iñárritu's BARDO. In addition, Netflix introduces a couple of impressive documentaries, with one full of tension and the other a little more relaxing. 

Bones and All (On Demand)

Both romantic and horrifying, Bones and All is very much not for all. Maren Yearly (Taylor Russell) is a teen dealing with her nearly-uncontrollable impulses towards cannibalism. Her single father Frank has been trying to help her, but soon she's on her own. This is how she meets Lee (Timothée Chalamet), a fellow "eater," whom she bonds with. The two protect each other, but have differing views on how to live their dangerous lives. Beautifully shot, but equally chilling in its moments depicting cannibalism, Bones and All is a movie that feels truly unique, and that's often thanks to Chalamet's strong performance, as well as the chemistry he and Russell share.

Rent on Amazon and other services right now (Arrived today, Tuesday, Dec. 13)

The Fabelmans

You do not need to go to the cinema to see Steven Spielberg's critically acclaimed film about his own movie theater experiences. In The Fabelmans, Sammy Fabelman (Gabriel LaBelle) falls in love with movies after his parents bring him to a screening of The Greatest Show on Earth. This inspires the child to make movies of his own at home, and the film has won nearly universal raves, thanks to strong performances from Michelle Williams and Paul Dano, who play Sammy's parents.

Rent on Amazon and other services right now (Arrived today, Tuesday, Dec. 13)

The Banshees of Inisherin (HBO Max)

Friendship can be great, but it can become asymmetrical faster than you realize. Such is the situation on a fictional island in Ireland where Pádraic (Colin Farrell) and Colm (Brendan Gleeson) used to be thick as thieves. After repeated requests for an answer as to what went wrong, Pádraic enlists other locals for help figuring out where things fell apart. 

And then Colm gets even more fed up with his former friend, and threatens drastic and shocking actions if this continues. Director Martin McDonagh's earned raves for the film, and the stars deliver the love and tension, while co-stars Kerry Condon and Barry Keoghan imbue it with more life.

Watch on HBO Max right now (Arrived today, Tuesday, Dec. 13)

The Black Phone (Prime Video)

The Grabber is the kind of name that doesn't really put fear into you, until you hear it said by the children in The Black Phone. Here, in the suburbs of Denver, children have started disappearing, and that's the last thing siblings Finney (Mason Thames) and Gwen (Madeleine McGraw) needed in their lives. Their father (Jeremy Davies) is an abusive alcoholic, their mother is missing and Finney's already a target of the local bullies. So, when you hear students spreading rumors that someone's kidnapping local kids, and see The Grabber's mask, the fear sets in.

And then we meet The Grabber, who's played hauntingly by Ethan Hawke, as he kidnaps more kids. Throw in a couple of supernatural elements (which make more sense when you learn The Black Phone is based on a book written by Joe Hill, the son of Stephen King), and you have an arresting movie that will have you cheering on its protagonists the whole time.

Watch it on Prime Video starting right now (Arrived today, Tuesday, Dec. 13)

Kangaroo Valley (Netflix)

Mala, a newborn kangaroo, doesn't face good odds — only one in five joeys actually make it to be one-year-old. And Netflix's new narrative documentary Kangaroo Valley tells the story of how she (spoiler alert) makes it to that first birthday. The gorgeously-shot Kangaroo Valley shows how both Mala's family and potential threats will play important roles in her survival. 

Oh, and then there's the little Easter egg for anyone who pays attention to credits. Mala's story is narrated by Sarah Snook, who plays Shiv on Succession. So, pay attention while listening to the above trailer, and realized this is Snook taking a break from her typically acid-tongued dialogue.

Watch it on Netflix starting Wednesday (Dec. 14)

Black Adam (HBO Max)

Black Adam, as you may have guessed, is about drive. It's also about power. But more specifically, it's about how an anti-hero may actually become a force for good. After being imprisoned in 2,600 BC, Teth-Adam (Dwayne Johnson) has been freed and let loose in the fictional middle-eastern city of Kahndaq. Here, the people live under the paramilitary thumbs of Intergang, a mercenary outfit. Young Amon (Bodhi Sabongui) wants this new super-powered individual he's met to help free the people. 

That said, a whole group of heroes know that Teth-Adam, who becomes Black Adam, poses a distinct threat to everyone around him. This group is the Justice Society, which is led by Doctor Fate (Pierce Brosnan) and Hawkman (Aldis Hodge). They're training up-and-coming heroes Cyclone (Quintessa Swindell) and Atom Smasher (Noah Centineo). 

While Black Adam's streaming release is a big deal for those who were waiting for it to leave theaters, it's not exactly a winner with the critical crowd. A whole lot takes place during Black Adam, and it's arguably too much. That said, Johnson provides the fun that only he can these days, and it's enjoyable to watch the character slightly grow. Oh, and make sure to stick around for that Black Adam post-credits scene.

How to watch Black Adam online

BARDO, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths (Netflix)

Esteemed director Alejandro G. Iñárritu (Amores perros, The Revenant) is at it again, with a new adrenaline rush called BARDO. In this film, we meet Silverio Gama (Daniel Giménez Cacho), an ambitious documentary filmmaker on the precipice of a massive achievement in his career. Constantly conflicted, and still haunted by the death of his first son, Silverio doesn't even know if he can go to collect the award he's to be given. Trying to explain what happens next would reveal far too much, as you've simply got to let Bardo show itself.

Garnering mixed reviews from critics, the movie is seen as both brilliant and too indulgent. It's clearly a personal passion project of Iñárritu's.

Stream it on Netflix starting Friday (Dec. 16)

Nanny (2022) Prime Video

A new and burgeoning genre of psychological horror that processes the immigrant story through a shocking lens rose to prominence with His House (one of the best horror movies on Netflix), and it's continuing in Nanny. Aisha (Anna Diop) has emigrated from Senegal to the U.S., and is currently caring for the child of a rich couple in New York City.

Aisha's son is supposed to arrive in New York soon, but Aisha's memories of her boy are haunting her throughout the day. The tension and anguish threatens to ruin the life that Aisha is preparing for her son and herself.

Stream it on Prime Video starting Friday (Dec. 16)

The Volcano: Rescue from Whakaari

At this point, a vacation might be exactly what you think you need. This documentary gives you an on-the-ground view of what it was like to be in the shoes of the tourists whose vacation was ripped apart by a volcanic eruption. 2019's Whakaari / White Island eruption took place slightly over three years ago, which saw 22 die in the disaster.

Interestingly enough, The Volcano: Rescue from Whakaari could be a Netflix true crime documentary in disguise. New Zealand's government filed charges against the tourist event operators who brought people to the island for violating health and safety rules. Instead, the movie looks to be a celebration both of the survivors and those who came to their rescue.

Watch on Netflix starting Friday (Dec. 16)

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.