9 top new movies to watch on Netflix, Hulu, Apple and more this week (Mar. 28-April 3)

(L-R) Jennifer Aniston as Audrey Spitz and Adam Sandler as Nick Spitz in Murder Mystery 2
(Image credit: Scott Yamano/Netflix © 2023)

This week's crop of the top new movies to watch online features a sequel to one of Netflix's most popular movies, and two movies that dominated the box office. 

As you've seen above, Murder Mystery 2 brings Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston back as the Spitzes, who have a new murder to figure out. A different murder mystery, though, is popping up on Showtime.

The bigger release of the week is Avatar: The Way of Water, finally making its debut at homes around the world. Plus, Apple TV Plus is turning the real story of Tetris' origin into a thriller we think has a chance of becoming one of the best Apple TV Plus movies.

Avatar: The Way of Water (Digital)

The biggest movie (at the box office) of the last year is finally available to watch at home. Avatar: The Way of Water picks up 16 years after the original movie, and this time old enemies are back to take revenge on Jake Sully (Sam Worthington), his wife Neytiri (Zoe Saldaña) and their Na'vi family. And those enemies are led by the Na'vi version of late Colonel Miles Quaritch (also played by Stephen Lang). On the run, the Sullys find safe haven with the Metkayina clan, who live on the water. But their enemies still hunt them down, leading to a perilous clash.

If you can get past its high-frame rate presentation (it's unclear how The Way of Water will be presented at home), the Avatar sequel is a vast step up from the original. That said, no underwater scenes have ever looked as good as The Way of Water's. It's just a matter of the above-water stuff that might throw you for a loop. The story of Sully and his family, especially his young ones, offers so much more than the original Avatar movie did.

Buy digitally on Amazon among others right now (released Tuesday, March 28)

Champions (Digital)

Marcus (Woody Harrelson), a former minor-league basketball coach, has gotten into enough trouble that the courts are intervening to try and make a better person out of him. And when he's ordered to coach a team of aspiring ballers who have intellectual disabilities, the mere suggestion provokes a reaction that shows how Marcus isn't quite a perfect fit. Of course, though, Marcus figures out that the players have more potential than he gave them credit for, as long as he gives them his all. 

Directed by Robert Farrelly, Champions is pretty much the feel-good movie its trailer suggests. The good news, though, is that (even with its predictability) Champions is entertaining, thanks to a funny script and solid performances from Harrelson and the rest of the ensemble. 

Buy digitally on Amazon right now (released Tuesday, March 28)

Murder Mystery 2 (Netflix)

In this life, there are three things you can rely on: death, taxes and the popularity of Adam Sandler projects on Netflix. And this Murder Mystery sequel brings the Sandman back for a destination wedding as the Maharaja (Adeel Akhtar) sends both Nick and Audrey Spitz (Sandler, Jennifer Aniston) an invitation to his private island. In case that sounds familiar, you're not alone.

There aren't many reviews for Murder Mystery 2 out yet, but Fred Topel at UPI calls it the "anti-Glass Onion." His point: Murder Mystery 2 isn't sophisticated — and that's its not-so-secret weapon. In short, those who loved Murder Mystery will likely have a good time with this sequel.

Watch on Netflix starting Friday (March 31)

Turn Every Page: The Adventures of Robert Caro and Robert Gottlieb (Digital)

Probably the most high-brow story on this list, Turn Every Page is a documentary about writer Robert Caro's relationship with editor Robert Gottlieb. The two have collaborated for fifty years, and the film shows the pair as the former is nearing completion of his final chapter of The Years of Lyndon Johnson, his magnum opus.

Critics raved about Turn Every Page for how it offers portraits of both titans, and their complex relationship. It's also noted to benefit from the intimacy provided by director Lizzie Gottlieb being Robert's daughter.

Available for digital rental and purchase on Amazon (released Tuesday, March 28)

The Son (Digital)

Hugh Jackman stars in this drama about how Peter (Jackman) is surprised to have his ex-wife (Laura Dern) and his son Nicholas (Zen McGrath) with her show up on his doorstep. Peter may be trying to live a new life with his wife Beth (Vanessa Kirby) and their infant daughter, but Nicholas is going through dire times mentally.

Critics din't really take to the film, arguing that audiences don't get the chance to connect with Nicholas. Those who liked it appreciated how it analyzed how families deal with sadness and depression.

Available for digital rental and purchase on Amazon (released Tuesday, March 28)

Tetris (Apple TV Plus)

Have you seen the ads for Ben Affleck's new movie Air, which stars Matt Damon as the Nike employee who made Air Jordans a thing? Well, Apple TV Plus is offering its own "how it got here" story, about the game designer who got the distribution rights for the iconic video game Tetris. 

That all may sound boring, but Apple's movie looks anything but boring. Henk Rogers (fresh out of Apple TV Plus' Black Bird) got his hands on the game, and found himself dreaming of its falling bricks, only to find up going to the Soviet Union in 1988. Yes, they made a Cold War-era thriller out of Tetris. Read our Tetris review for more detail.

Watch on Apple TV Plus starting Friday (March 31)

Rye Lane (Hulu)

Breakups can send people going into many different directions, but Dom (David Jonsson) found himself weeping in the bathroom when he met Yas (Vivian Oparah). Fortunately for him, Yas has the exact attitude Dom needs to bring himself up and out of the doldrums of a split. From mocking the new relationship his ex is in to relating to him through her own breakup, Yas helps Dom recover. 

Critics rave about Rye Lane (which has a 98% Rotten Tomatoes score at the time of publication), for reviving the romantic comedy genre. They also note that while it was made with big-studio money, it has the appeal of a more intimate indie success story. 

Watch on Hulu starting Friday (March 31)

Creed III (Digital)

We can't talk about Creed III without talking about the news of the accusations leveled at Jonathan Majors, who plays the villainous pugilist Damian Anderson in the film. Majors was reportedly arrested on Saturday (March 25th), on charges of assault and harassment. His attorney claimed the accuser has since recanted her allegations.

In Creed III, Majors plays a childhood friend of Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan, who also directs), the retired championship boxer trained by Rocky Balboa, who has finally been released from jail. With manipulation, Damian manages to insert himself into the world of boxing, in as unlikely a way as Rocky did in the first movie of the series.

Having seen Creed III, I can attest to it delivering on multiple fronts. Jordan proves himself a strong director, and the film's final fight is one of the biggest surprises in recent memory.

Buy digitally on Amazon on Friday (March 31)

Bodies Bodies Bodies (Showtime)

Yes, Sandler and Aniston aren't the only folks who found a dead body at a party this week. David (Pete Davidson) is the host of a hurricane party at his parents' fancy estate, and his guests discover a bloody surprise. Everyone's a suspect, from the peculiar and much-older guy (Lee Pace) who's someone's plus-one, as well as the estranged Sophie (Amandla Stenberg) who just so happened to reunite with her friends for this event.

Somewhere in between Clue and Glass Onion, with a Gen-Z bent, Bodies Bodies Bodies was the latest gem from A24 when it dropped last year. Now, it's headed to Showtime, where it can hopefully find more fans who missed its theatrical release. 

Watch on Showtime starting Saturday (April 1)

More from Tom's Guide

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.