Best TV and Movies to Stream: '12 Dates of Christmas', 'The Beatles: Get Back' and More
By Danica Creahan
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With Prime Video, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, Paramount+, Netflix, Peacock, Discovery+ and even more streaming services, there’s no shortage of options when choosing your next binge-worthy show or the main event at movie night. However, sometimes the amount of great film and television available to stream can be overwhelming and lead to hours scrolling Netflix aimlessly, hoping to land on that perfect piece of content.
Scroll no more! To help you out, we've rounded up the best movies and TV shows to stream right now-- including new arrivals, nostalgia-filled favorites and titles you may have missed the (well-deserved) hype on originally that are worth circling back for.
Never Have I Ever creator Mindy Kaling teamed up with Brooklyn Nine-Nine writer Justin Noble for HBO Max's The Sex Lives of College Girls. The series follows four college freshmen-- one of whom it's important to note is played by Timothée Chalamet's sister, Pauline-- who room together at Essex College in Vermont. Kimberly, Leighton, Whitney and Bela all come from largely different backgrounds and perspectives, but they're all sharing the unforgettable experience of newfound freedom in the university environment-- and the uncertainty of what they should do in the face of it. Go on the wildest of journeys with The Sex Lives of College Girls, now streaming on HBO Max.
12 Dates of Christmas took over the holidays last year, and it's back for round two. The dating show draws its inspiration directly from all the Holiday rom-coms we know and love. Three new eligible singles are searching for that perfect person to bring home for the holidays this season, encountering drama, romance, and (presumably) the magic of Christmas along the way. Season 2 of this festive series is streaming now on HBO Max.
After over a year of delays due to the pandemic, what began as a film has now been transformed into a three-part series which takes an intimate look at The Beatles’ creative process, and the state of their personal relationships towards the end of their partnership. The docuseries is in part crafted from 60 hours of unseen footage and over 100 hours of unheard audio that’s been stored away all this time.
With a reported run time of nearly eight hours, The Beatles: Get Back will premiere on Disney+ across three consecutive days, starting this Thanksgiving, Nov. 25, so make sure to be on the lookout for Beatlemania all through this coming weekend.
Though there’s been plenty of adaptations with this surly Seuss character, the original 1966 cartoon, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is an undeniable classic. The Grinch and his “two sizes too small” heart reside in a cave outside of Whoville, and one fateful Christmas eve, his hatred of the holiday gets the better of him, and the Grinch sets out to pull a reverse Santa Claus on the village.
You can stream this cartoon short of How the Grinch Stole Christmas! on Peacock with a premium subscription for $5 monthly.
For those who don’t remember, in A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, the beloved and ever-so-bold Peppermint Patty decides to invite herself (and everyone else) to Charlie Brown's place for Thanksgiving, despite his plans to go visit his grandma for the occasion. Snoopy decides to step in and cook up his own version of a Thanksgiving meal with some help from Woodstock, and in the end everyone has a wonderful and popcorn-filled time. Yum! You can stream this nostalgia-filled holiday special on Apple TV+.
After over a year of delays due to the pandemic, King Richard has finally arrived to screens both big and small. The film follows the journey of Richard Williams as he raises his daughters into tennis icons. Based on the true story of Serena and Venus Williams’ childhood, the movie explores Richard’s experience with fatherhood and his efforts to secure his daughters’ futures in the sports world. While the odds seem stacked against them in the latest trailer, Richard appears certain that he has “the next two” Michael Jordans on his hands. And as we all now know, he was right. Catch this can't-miss sports and fatherhood flick in theaters and streaming on HBO Max.
Amazon's foray into the epic world of fantasy starts now. Starring Golden Globe-winning actress Rosamund Pike, The Wheel of Time, based on the popular novel series of the same name, follows Moiraine, who belongs to a powerful all-female organization in a world where she and other select women possess magical powers. Moiraine must embark on a vast adventure with five young men and women to discover which of them is prophesied to be the “Dragon” Reborn, who will either save or destroy humanity. This fantastical series is streaming on Prime Video.
Apple TV+’s new thriller show, The Shrink Next Door, stars Paul Rudd and Will Ferrell, and is based on a true crime podcast by the same name. The story follows Dr. Isaac “Ike” Herschkopf and his longtime patient Martin “Marty” Markowitz as their bizarre doctor-patient relationship unfolds. As Marty evolves on his therapy journey, so does Dr. Ike, who grows progressively more involved in Marty’s life, moves into Marty’s Hamptons home, and makes a play for Marty’s family business. Kathryn Hahn and Casey Wilson also star in this twisted series.
If you missed this chapter of the MCU in theaters, now is your chance to catch up. Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is now available to stream on Disney+! This action-packed superhero origin story follows Marvel’s first Asian protagonist, Shang-Chi, as he grows up training to be an assassin. He comes of age and attempts to leave behind a life of crime, but the terrorist organization by the name of Ten Rings comes calling, and Shang-Chi finds his father, Wenwu-- AKA The Mandarin-- at the helm of the entire evil operation. It’s jam-packed with new and familiar faces -- including Simu Liu, Awkwafina and Tony Leung Chiu-wai -- joining or reprising their MCU roles.
Carole Baskin’s Cage Fight explores the Big Cat Rescue CEO’s perspective on the events of Netflix’s Tiger King, and what she uncovers now that Joe Exotic’s G.W. Zoo is under her control. With her husband, Howard, retired homicide detective Griff Garrison, and Exotic’s own niece, Chealsi Putman, by her side, Carole Baskin goes inside Exotic’s former Oklahoma property to investigate possible animal abuse and the allegations of other heinous crimes some have claimed occurred there over the past decades.
Parasite’s Lee Sun-kyun stars in Apple TV+’s latest venture: a sci-fi mystery series called Dr. Brain. The show follows a genius scientist, Sewon, who is struggling after his family falls victim to a tragic and mysterious accident. In an attempt to discover the truth behind the incident, Sewon invents the process of “brain syncing,” and uses his innovation to access the brains of corpses, parsing through the deceased's memories for clues. This sci-fi mystery series is available to stream now on Apple TV+, with new episodes dropping weekly.
Cat lovers, this one’s for you. Prime Video’s imaginative biopic of artist Louis Wain makes its streaming premiere this week. The film follows the victorian-era artist, played by Benedict Cumberbatch, as he rises to prominence in his craft through creating colorful and somewhat kitschy portraits of cats, all while his mental health is in a constant state of decline. The Electrical Life of Louis Wain is fantastical in its cinematography and applies the eccentric nature of Wain’s work to the storytelling.
The third season of this edgy reimagining of Emily Dickinson’s life drops this week. Starring Hailee Steinfeld, Dickinson reimagines the famous poet as a fiery and audacious teenager fighting against the patriarchal perimeters of her life at every turn, occasionally with the help of-- get this-- Whiz Khalifa. That’s just the start of the fantastic absurdity this series brings to the table.
The 1980’s ABC sitcom, Head of the Class, is getting a 2021 makeover. The show follows a group of gifted high school students and their history teacher who helps guide them through this phase of their life and encourages them to see beyond their textbooks. The reboot stars One Day at a Time‘s Isabella Gomez, alongside Jorge Diaz, Jolie Hoang Rappaport, Gavin Lewis, Dior Goodjohn, Brandon Severs, Adrian Matthew Escalona, and Katie Beth Hall. You can stream all 10 episodes of the new Head of the Class now on HBO Max.
HBO Max’s flagship rom-com series returns with its second season and a new star: William Jackson Harper. The first season of the show followed Darby, played by Anna Kendrick, an anxious individual who struggles to maintain healthy romantic relationships. But as anthology shows such as this one go, Darby’s story is essentially wrapped up by the end of season 1, and now the series has moved on to a tangential friend in her life, Marcus Watkins, who finds himself unexpectedly dating again after his marriage comes to a sudden end. Even if you haven’t seen the first season of Love Life, you can easily jump in and watch Marcus explore romance and commitment in season 2.
After six years, the next chapter of the Paranormal Activity series is here. The film follows Margot, played by Charmed's Emily Bader, who is looking for her biological parents. When Margot traces her mother’s path back to an Amish community, she brings a documentarian friend along to capture what she intends to be a heartwarming homecoming journey. But this remote community appears to be harboring more than just Margot’s long lost relatives.
Season 4 of Insecure left fans totally gobsmacked with its unexpected twists, and now the fifth and final season of the show is here, promising new turns and challenges for the beloved characters. The coming season will focus on Lawrence having a child, Issa and Molly’s friendship, and Molly’s relationship status. New episodes of Insecure air every Sunday on HBO, and are available to stream on HBO Max.
Dune, based on Frank Herbert's classic science fiction saga of the same name, follows Paul Atreides, played by Timothée Chalamet. Paul lives in the distant future in an intergalactic feudal society ruled by one all-powerful emperor. When his family is forced to relocate to the desert planet Arrakis, better known as Dune, they must fend off all types of enemies while overseeing the harvest of a precious and powerful spice. Timothée Chalamet stars alongside Oscar Isaac and Zendaya in this can’t-miss sci-fi spectacle, out now in theaters and on HBO Max.
What Happened, Brittany Murphy? explores the life and death of ‘90s sweetheart and beloved actress, Brittany Murphy. The docuseries showcases new archival footage and interviews from the close friends and family of Brittany. The show examines the impacts of sexism in Hollywood and the toxic effects of tabloid culture, as well as how Brittany’s life and career were shaped by her marriage to late screenwriter Simon Monjack. This two-part docuseries is out now on HBO Max.
From the producers of Get Out and The Invisible Man, Amazon and Blumhouse’s horror series, Welcome to the Blumhouse, continues this year with four new films joining the streaming platform. Bingo Hell follows a spirited senior citizen who must fight against a sinister businessman to protect the residents of her low-income community. Black as Night is an action-horror hybrid set in New Orleans in which a teenager crafts a revenge plan against a horde of local vampires. The Manor tells the story of a sleepy nursing home in which an evil force is preying on the residents. Madres is about a young Mexican-American couple in the 1970’s who move to a small rural town to manage an isolated farm ahead of the birth of their first child. All of these films, including last year’s movies in Amazon’s Welcome to the Blumhouse series, are available to stream now.
Hulu is finally hopping on the bake-off train with Baker’s Dozen. 13 bakers, some amateurs and some professional, gather and compete for a chance at a $5,000 grand prize. The show is broken into three rounds, the first centers around creativity and presentation, the second around taste, and the third round combines the two in a fantastical dessert mashup. Hosted by The Real’s Tamera Mowry-Housley and Former White House pastry chef, Bill Yosses, this delightful (and delicious) competition is streaming now on Hulu.
Demi Lovato is confident about their journey through the world of aliens. The pop singer is bringing their friend Matthew and sister Dallas along for the televised ride as they speak with leading experts, interview alien eyewitnesses, and conduct tests to search for the truth about UFOs in this four-part, extraterrestrial docuseries, streaming exclusively on Peacock.
Based on the Lois Duncan novel of the same name, I Know What You Did Last Summer follows a group of teenagers who, after a fatal car crash, feel as though they’re being haunted by their victim. The teens quickly realize that their perceived ghost is actually a serial killer who is stalking them, and the trailer suggests that it only gets crazier from there. The first season of I Know What You Did Last Summer is out now.
Prom kings and queens and everyone in between, grab your tiaras and highest heels and tune in to The Jamie Show. Based on the musical of the same name, Everybody's Talking About Jamie stars Max Harwood as Jamie New, whose dream of attending prom in drag sends his small English town into a tizzy.
Cry Macho may sound like a movie Clint Eastwood would have directed and starred in the '70s, which is apt because that's when the drama is set. In it, Eastwood plays a one-time rodeo star who accepts a job escorting a boy (newcomer Eduardo Minett) home from Mexico. Macho-ness and some crying likely ensues.
Though he's currently under the sea shooting the Aquaman sequel, the latest from director James Wan is a return to form: With Malignant, he returns to his Insidious and Conjuring roots for a horror flick about a woman (Annabelle Wallis) whose imaginary friend may or may not be committing grisly murders.
The devil is in the details -- and in his final season, as Netflix wraps up the story of TV's most charming fallen angel (Tom Ellis). And though he's been resurrected once before, this time it's ending for good. So, will Lucifer become God? And will he and Chloe (Lauren German) get a happy ending? Tune in to say goodbye.
At long last, a Cinderella story featuring the music of Janet Jackson, Ed Sheeran and JLO. Camila Cabello stars as titular princess in this modern retelling/jukebox musical from writer-director Kay Cannon, with Billy Porter as her fairy godmother, Idina Menzel as her wicked stepmother and Nicholas Galitzine as her Prince Charming.
Who could have predicted Disney+ would be the go-to streamer for your favorite pop star's new projects? First there was Beyoncé with Black Is King, then Taylor Swift with her intimate Folklore concert film, now it's Billie Eilish's turn. Happier than Ever: A Love Letter to Los Angeles sees her performing every song from her latest album -- in order -- from L.A.'s legendary Hollywood Bowl.
Steve Martin. Martin Short. Selena Gomez. Need we say more? The comedic voices of two different generations (Wizards of Waverly Place was seminal) united for a true crime-inspired comedy about neighbors recording a podcast while attempting to solve a murder in their Upper West Side apartment building. Can they solve the mystery before one of them ends up dead too?
Who was Cruella de Vil before she became the puppy murderer we all know and love? As played by Emma Stone in this origin story, she's an aspiring fashion designer named Estrella. You'll have to tune in to find out how Dalmatians factor in, but expect endless over-the-top costumes and appearances by other beloved characters, too. Now available to all Disney+ subscribers.
What happens on vacation doesn't stay on vacation in this raunchy comedy about a newly engaged couple (Lil Rel Howery and Yvonne Orji) who befriend a pair of partiers (John Cena and Meredith Hagner) in Mexico -- but regret it when the tequila-chugging, jet ski-crashing twosome show up at their wedding.
The funniest show on TV makes the jump to HBO Max for its second season, in which struggling actor Cary (Drew Tarver) and wannabe manager Brooke (Heléne Yorke) not only have to deal with their little brother's overnight fame but their mom's (Molly Shannon) new daytime talk show!
Lizzie McGuire may not be getting the grown up reboot of our dreams but iCarly, with Miranda Cosgrove reprising her role as the titular influencer 10 years after the Nickelodeon series ended, successfully pulled it out. Season 1 is now streaming full as Carly navigates dating and other 20-something drama in the social media age.
Hugh Jackman's private investigator exists in a not-so-far-off future, where global warming has submerged the city of Miami and sci-fi tech allows you to escape into better memories from the past. That's how he becomes entangled with a missing femme fatale (Rebecca Ferguson) in Westworld co-creator Lisa Joy's feature debut.
Octavia Spencer is back as true crime podcaster Poppy Parnell and investigating a new case that involves her childhood friend-turned-media mogul. That's where Kate Hudson comes in, for her first-ever starring TV gig. (If you don't count the string of guest star appearances she did on Glee.)
If Sandra Oh's on it, we're watching: Grey's Anatomy, Killing Eve, and now The Chair, a dramedy in which she plays the first woman to chair her department at the prestigious Pembroke University. Jay Duplass and Holland co-star, with Amanda Peet serving as showrunner on her first series.
The only hearing person in her family, high schooler Ruby (Locke & Key's Emilia Jones) comes of age when she discovers a passion for music. (The title is short for "Child of Deaf Adults.") CODA was the breakout film at Sundance this year and is now streaming, co-starring Marlee Matlin, Troy Kotsur and Daniel Durant.
If Eugene Cordero was your breakout star of Loki, then you can get a lot more of him aboard the U.S.S. Cerritos, as Ensigns Mariner (Tawny Newsome), Boimler (Jack Quaid), Rutherford (Cordero) and Tendi (Noël Wells) return for a new season of animated hijinks on a journey to live long and prosper.
From the streamer that brought Ted Lasso into your life comes another winsome comedy starring two comedians who deserve the world: Cecily Strong (an undersung hero of SNL) and Keegan-Michael Key play a couple who find themselves trapped in a musical from the '40s and unable to escape until they find true love. Season finale now streaming.
Based on the beloved Disney attraction, the adventure stars Emily Blunt as Dr. Lily Houghton, a turn of the century researcher who travels to the Amazon in search of a legendary tree with the ability to cure all known maladies. There, she hires a hapless riverboat skipper named Frank (Dwayne Johnson), to take her down the river. Punnery ensues.
Have fun explaining this title to your mom. Hosted by comedian Nikki Glaser, the series drops three single gals onto an island with a cavalcade of guys who are either genuinely looking for love -- or are f**kboys, which in this case means they're just there for the cash (but probably wouldn't turn down a FBOY With Benefits sitch). The women must figure out who's who. As for us? We're already in love with this dumb, dumb program.
Everybody's favorite "football" coach is back for another season of kindness, biscuits and some sports, too. Following a history-making Emmy nominations haul, season 2 gets rom-commyy for Keeley (Juno Temple) and Roy (Brett Goldstein) while Ted (Jason Sudeikis) and AFC Richmond fight to prove themselves on the pitch.
Scarlett Johansson's original Avenger finally gets her own solo film: A globetrotting spy thriller that sees Natasha on the run and teaming up her "sister," Yelena (Florence Pugh), to take on a comic book baddie named Taskmaster. Rachel Weisz co-stars as a fellow Widow-turned-shady scientist with David Harbour as the Russian super soldier, Red Guardian.
She's baaaaaack. Everyone's favorite digital tattletale has moved on from Serena and Blair to sink her claws into a new clique in this continuation of the iconic series -- with a twist. Kristen Bell returns as the voice of Gossip Girl, alongside a sexy new cast of Upper East Siders.
It's the same Rugrats you loved with a kid, just for the 21 century. The iconic '90s cartoon returns with a CG- makeover, but while it may look different, it will sound the same: Tommy Pickles and his pint-sized friends are all voiced by the same actors from when you were young, ready to embark on new adventures.
Your favorite Central Perk sextet is streaming on HBO Max, and there's no better time to binge the entire series than with the debut of the years-in-the-making reunion. Catch up with Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Chandler, Joey and Ross, check in on Ugly Naked Guy, grab a coffee from Gunther and figure out, once and for all, if they were really "on a break."
While it’s being liked to Gossip Girl meets Downton Abbey, Bridgerton is a true Shondaland original. The ensemble series about high society kicks off as Daphne (Phoebe Dynevor), the eldest daughter of the revered and expansive Bridgerton family, makes her debut in London’s marriage market and become the subject of the mysterious Lady Whistledown’s scandal sheet.
If you haven't caught The Flight Attendant yet, it's time to get on board. Kaley Cuoco returns to TV for her first live-action role since The Big Bang Theory in this HBO Max mystery, playing Cassie, a flight attendant who wakes up after a night of drunken sex with a handsome stranger (Michiel Huisman), only to find her lover gruesomely murdered in her hotel bed.
The beloved (and 11-time Tony-winning) Broadway musical is finally available to watch at home, offering fans a composite of several productions of the hip-hop founding father saga recorded at the Richard Rodgers Theatre with the original 2016 cast, which includes Lin-Manuel Miranda, Leslie Odom Jr., Philippa Soo, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Daveed Diggs and more.
Twenty years after its premiere season, Survivor has continued to outwit, outplay and outlast, delivering some of reality TV's most grueling challenges and compelling personalities. Stream every season of the ultimate competition show on Paramount+ now.