The Best Movies and TV Shows to Stay In and Stream
By ET Staff
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Everything is closed and we all are self-quarantining due to the coronavirus pandemic, but one thing's for sure: You can still stream.
Washing your hands, practicing social distancing and avoiding large-scale events are important ways to protect yourself and others from coronavirus, and luckily, once you've stocked up on the essentials for a weekend inside, there's plenty to watch and keep yourself entertained on Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, CBS All Access, Peacock and more streaming services. In fact, there are so many choices that it can get a little overwhelming deciding what to sit down and turn on. To help you out, we've rounded up the best movies and TV shows to stream right now -- including new arrivals, old favorites and titles you may have forgotten to check out when they first premiered.
And for even more recommendations, make sure to check out our guide for everything new on Netflix and Hulu in November.
Created by Hannah Fidell, A Teacher -- a 10-episode, half-hour limited series -- expands the world of her 2013 independent film of the same name about the “complexities and consequences of an illegal relationship” between a Texas high school teacher, Claire Wilson (Kate Mara), and her teenage student, Eric Walker (Nick Robinson).
Based on the popular young adult book series, Dash & Lily's Book of Dares, by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, the eight-episode holiday romance follows the cynical Dash (Austin Abrams) and the optimistic Lily (Midori Francis) as they embark on a memorable adventure through New York City without ever meeting. Communicating only through a red notebook, the teenagers trade dares, dreams and desires they pass back and forth at locations across the city, finding they have more in common with each other than they may have expected.
Swedish director Nathan Grossman tracks the story of teenage activist Greta Thunberg, from her one-person school strike for climate action outside the Swedish Parliament, through her rise to international fame, which culminates in her extraordinary wind-powered voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to speak at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York City.
Picking up shortly after the events of season 1, the upcoming episodes see the Mandalorian and the Child continue their journey through an ever-dangerous galaxy as they face enemies and try to rally allies. But the mission to return the Child to its home planet, wherever that may be, will be that much more complicated now that Moff Gideon has been established as the Darksaber-wielding big bad and survived their last, bloody encounter in the finale.
In Netflix's first holiday movie of the year, Emma Roberts and Luke Bracey play Christmas grinches, Sloane and Jackson, who make a pact to be each other's plus-ones for each major soiree, from Christmas to Easter to New Year's, for the next 12 months, mainly so they don't have to go suffer through awkward dates or be stuck at the singles' table. But in classic romantic comedy fashion, the pair -- who deny they have any romantic feelings for each other, of course -- find themselves bracing for the possibility that they may actually be falling in love.
Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant's new HBO thriller -- based on Jean Hanff Korelitz’s novel You Should Have Known -- centers on Grace (Kidman) and Jonathan Fraser (Grant), a couple who are living the only lives they ever wanted for themselves. Overnight, a chasm opens in their lives: a violent death and a chain of terrible revelations. Left behind in the wake of a spreading and very public disaster, and horrified by the ways in which she has failed to heed her own advice, Grace must dismantle one life and create another for her child and her family.
Calling all horror fans! Shudder is scaring up five terrifying tales with The Mortuary Collection, the feature debut from writer and director Ryan Spindell. A young drifter applies for a job at the local mortuary and meets an eccentric mortician who chronicles the strange history of the town through a series of twisted tales, each more horrifying than the last. The film stars Clancy Brown, Caitlin Fisher, Jacob Elordi, Barak Hardley, Sarah Hey, and Christine Kilmer.
Anya Taylor-Joy stars in the coming-of-age drama about a chess prodigy to life in The Queen’s Gambit. The limited series is based on the novel by Walter Tevis and “explores the true cost of genius” as it tells the story of an orphan, Beth Harmon (Taylor-Joy), who discovers she has a remarkable talent for chess. Soon after she’s adopted by a lonely housewife, Mrs. Alma (Marielle Heller), Beth’s passion for chess grows as she starts competing around the country. However, her passion for the game is challenged by her addiction to tranquilizers, which she turns to in order to help combat her personal demons.
From Dear White People writer and director Justin Simien comes a new horror film, Bad Hair, about a young woman in the late '80s who transforms her look in order to follow her dreams of becoming a TV star. Only problem is, her new hair may have a mind of its own.
Simiem told ET that the movie was inspired by the discovery of Asian hair-possession horror movies -- like the 2005 South Korean film The Wig -- which he transformed to be rootedin the Black female experience. “This is my way of writing a love letter about all of the BS that Black women have to go through,” the writer and director said, sharing that he was raised by “a village of Black women” in Houston after his father died. "I named all the women in this story after my mom and my aunts."
Anne Hathaway assumes the role of Grand High Witch in Robert Zemeckis' reimagining of Roald Dahl's The Witches -- taking the mantle from Anjelica Huston,who so iconically played the part in the 1990 adaptation. As before, the story follows a young boy (Jahzir Bruno) who stumbles upon a secret convention of witches while on holiday with his grandmother (Octavia Spencer). Discovering that the Grand High Witch has brewed a potion that will turn children into mice, he sets out to thwart her evil plan -- even if he must to do so as a rodent.
The new imagining of Daphne du Maurier's seminal 1938 novel, from Free Fire director Ben Wheatley, sees widower Maxim de Winter (Armie Hammer) meet an unnamed young woman in Monte Carlo who helps bring him back to life. Following a whirlwind romance, they marry and the de Winters soon return to Manderley, the estate Maxim once shared with his late wife Rebecca.
Though this take returns to the same time period as its predecessors -- including Alfred Hitchcock's Best Picture-winning 1940 film -- Lily James, who stars as the new Mrs. de Winter, sees it all through an especially modern lens. "We were talking a lot about how Rebecca is a very modern tale, because it reflects, in a way, the world of social media," she told ET. "My character has this whole idea of Rebecca, but the truth is entirely different. And often in social media, that's the case. You present this world that's very, very far from the truth. It's about, like, appearance versus reality and how they can be so, so far apart."
Aaron Sorkin's latest real-life dramatization tells the story of the events surrounding the 1968 Democratic National Convention, and a group of political leaders who were charged with conspiracy to incite a riot in a nationally televised trial that radicalized a generation of young people. The star-studded cast includes Sacha Baron Cohen and Jeremy Strong as activists Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin, Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Black Panther Party members Fred Hampton and Bobby Seale, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Mark Rylance, Eddie Redmayne and more.
The original stars of NBC's beloved political drama reunited for the first time in 17 years for a special theatrical performance of the iconic season 3 episode, "Hartsfield's Landing," which dropped as a special episode Thursday, Oct. 15 on HBO Max, as a benefit for Michelle Obama's When We All Vote. Series stars Martin Sheen, Rob Lowe, Dule Hill, Allison Janney, Janel Maloney, Richard Schiff and Bradley Whitford all returned for the special, with Sterling K. Brown, whom creator Aaron Sorkin previously expressed interest working with, stepping in to play Chief of Staff Leo McGarry, who was originally played by the late John Spencer.
Clouds tells the inspiring true story of a 17-year-old musician, Zach Sobiech, as he navigates his senior year of high school, first love and being diagnosed with a rare bone cancer. Given six months to live, Zach sets out to put his goodbyes to his loved ones into song -- and unwittingly writes a viral hit, the titular "Clouds."
"Most teenagers feel like they're invincible. Not the Superman kind of invincible. The kind of invincible that tricks you into thinking tomorrow might be a better day to start chasing your dreams," Zach (played by Fin Argus) narrates the trailer. "And while there's a lot that I don't know at my age, what I do know is this: We all have limited time."
In 1997, newlyweds Fox and Rob Rich, facing the loss of their family business, robbed a bank. She served three and a half years in prison, while he was sentenced to 60 years without the possibility of probation, parole or a suspension of sentence. Fox would spend the next two decades battling the criminal justice system to bring him home.
Time is both a portrait of a woman's fight to keep her family together despite her husband's imprisonment and a look at the harm mass incarceration inflicts not only to the incarcerated but the loved ones left behind. Director Garrett Bradley pieces the moving filmtogether using both her own footage and more than 100 hours of archival home videos Fox shot throughout Rob's sentence. The collaboration is loving and aching and ultimately, despite it all, uplifting.
Orange Is the New Black creator Jenji Kohan's new Netflix anthology series was written, filmed and edited following social distancing guidelines during the coronavirus pandemic, and aims to tell stories about the current moment the world is experiencing through personal and deeply human stories exploring how we're all living apart together. The series stars Danielle Brooks, Mike Colter, Oscar Nunez, Guillermo Diaz, Asante Blackk, Lachlan Watson, Brian Jordan Alvarez and more.
The 2020 follow-up to Get Out and Us is on the small screen, as Jordan Peele's Monkeypaw Productions teams up with J.J. Abrams and Underground producer Misha Green to meld sci-fi monsters with the real-life terror of racism in 1950s Jim Crow America. The star-studded cast includes Jurnee Smollett, Michael K. Williams, Tony Goldwyn and Last Black Man in San Francisco breakout Jonathan Majors.
Two years after the buzzed-about debut of The Haunting of Hill House on Netflix, creator and executive producer Mike Flanagan has gifted horror fans with an anthological follow-up filled with familiar faces in a brand-new, nine-episode ghost story.
"While the first season is like, a family drama horror, this season is more gothic, you know, dark, moody, romance or a very tragic love story," star Victoria Pedretti, who plays Dani, dished to ET during a virtual junket.
Based on the best-selling book by Tom Wolfe, which was previously turned into a 1983 hit film starring Ed Harris and Sam Shepard, the eight-part series revisits America’s 1960s space race with the Soviet Union and the formation of NASA. It is told through the eyes of seven men who made up the original astronaut program.
Deaf U, the first docuseries of its kind, follows a group of deaf students at Gallaudet University, the renowned private college in Washington, D.C.
“This project titled Deaf U really started as a perspective, a look into the deaf community and just how layered the deaf community truly is,” executive producer Nyle DiMarco said during Netflix's virtual Television Critics Association press tour in August, while appearing alongside subjects Daequan Taylor, Cheyenna Clearbrook, Renate Rose and Rodney Burford. “It’s a deep dive into the deaf community.”
“The point of it all is that deaf people are human,” he added. “There truly is no right way for being deaf. For audiences at home, I think that’s a major takeaway.”
Netflix's new rom-com from star TV-maker Darren Star, features Lily Collins as the titular Emily, a social media wunderkind who relocates to Paris to work at a boutique marketing firm and "provide an American point of view." There, she totters around the City of Lights on designer heels, sips wine by the Seine and attracts an endless parade of swoon-worthy men. (Superficially speaking, everyone in France is a solid 9 and up in Emily in Paris.)
Rihanna’s highly anticipated fashion show is an imaginative, star-studded showcase of the icon’s new Fall 2020 collection, with celebrity appearances from Bella Hadid, Big Sean, Cara Delevingne, Christian Combs, Normani, Lizzo, Demi Moore, Erika Jayne, Gigi Goode, Irina Shayk, Laura Harrier, Paris Hilton, Rico Nasty, Shea Couleé, Willow Smith, Jaida Essence Hall, Indya Moore and more.
“There’s gonna be an array of personalities,” Rihanna told ET ahead of the show, revealing that this celebration of self-expression and inclusivity would include male, female, non-binary and transgender models of all shapes, races and sexualities. “It’s definitely gonna be off the chain.”
The group all reunited for the 2020 film adaptation, which was directed once again by Joe Mantello. "When I watched the film, I was incredibly proud to be a part of it," Quinto told ET about the Netflix adaptation. "It was an incredible experience from start to finish."
One of 2020's most hilarious new shows, Ted Lasso stars SNL alum Jason Sudeikis as a good ol' boy college football coach who heads across the pond to lead a beloved English "football" club. The character was born from a series of promos Sudeikis did as the character for NBC Sports' coverage of the English Premier League several years ago, but there's just as much heart as there is silly schtick in the new series.
Based on the lauded podcast of the same name, Song Exploder features host Hrishikesh Hirway sitting down with some of the biggest names in music to dissect the creation of one of their most popular tracks, down to the bare bones creation of the lyrics and musicality. Season 1 features in-depth conversations with Alicia Keys, Lin-Manuel Miranda, R.E.M. and Ty Dolla $ign.
The new Netflix movie stars Millie Bobby Brown as the titular budding detective and youngest sister of Sherlock (Henry Cavill) and Mycroft (Sam Claflin). "I hope people enjoy it as much as we did making it," Claflin told ET of the fun mystery film. "I feel that's a line I use in every job I've worked on, but it's true."
Based on the U.K. series of the same name, Utopia-- which stars John Cusack, Rainn Wilson, Sasha Lane, Dan Byrd, Desmin Borges and more --follows a group of young adults who meet online and are mercilessly hunted by a shadowy deep state organization after they come into possession of a near-mythical cult underground graphic novel -- they discover the conspiracy theories in the comic's pages may actually be real and are forced into the dangerous, unique and ironic position of saving the world.
Console Wars, a new CBS All Access documentary produced and directed by Jonah Tulis and Blake J. Harris -- author of the book of the same name -- details the rivalry and fierce business competition that developed between Nintendo and Sega, when the latter company found popularity with its Sonic the Hedgehog franchise in the early '90s.
"It became a kind of Spy vs. Spy," Sega of America's Ellen Beth van Buskirk says in the trailer of the developmental competition between the two companies, while other Sega and Nintendo figures recall confrontations between the two factions that included "yelling and screaming at various events" and even the sabotage of a Sonic balloon display.
It's been anything but a normal year, so if you're looking for some comfort watching, take solace in the fact that there's a new season of TheGreat British Baking Show (ahem, Bake Off) on Netflix this weekend! Watch as Paul, Prue, Noel and new host Matt Lucas lead a fresh group of bakers through a series of sugar-coated challenges and imagine a world where the only thing that can go wrong is that your opponent pulls your ice cream out of the freezer too early, thereby ruining your Baked Alaska.
The haunting new Netflix film -- directed by Antonio Campos and based on the novel of the same name by Donald Ray Pollock -- follows several violent, interweaving storylines through mid-20th century Appalachia, and features an ensemble cast including Tom Holland, Bill Skarsgård, Riley Keough, Jason Clarke, Sebastian Stan, Haley Bennett, Eliza Scanlen, Mia Wasikowska and Robert Pattinson.
Netflix’s ambitious and stylish new series about the origins of one of cinema’s most iconic and villainous characters stars Sarah Paulson as a young Nurse Ratched, years before the events of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, as she infiltrates the mental health care system in Northern California, where unsettling experiments are being conducted on the human mind.
“The stakes are exceedingly high,” Paulson told ET of signing on for the series, created by Evan Romansky and executive produced by Ryan Murphy. "This was a very fertile, wonderful place to work, and it was because of what everybody was bringing to the table. It was a really humbling, really ‘pinch me’ kind of moment on a daily basis. It really was."
Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle are back in middle school for pen15's second season! Hulu’s insanely addictive, highly bingeable comedy hits ‘90s kids right in the feels, with a spot-on recreation of the awkward, nostalgic details of early-aughts life, and the 30-something creators and stars acting alongside real-life tweens only adds to the hilarity.
Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman previously chronicled their epic motorcycle expeditions from London to New York in 2004's Long Way Round, and from Scotland to South Africa in 2007's Long Way Down. Now they've reunited for another journey, traveling from the southernmost tip of Argentina up through South and Central America and ending in Los Angeles, for their new Apple TV+ series, Long Way Up -- and they did the whole trip on electric motorcycles.
"What was lovely about it, is that you would get to these places, in a youth hostel or a B&B or somewhere, and you say, 'Look, do you mind if we plug in?' and people were absolutely like, 'Yeah, come on in,' and, 'Wow, what a trip!'" Boorman recalled when the pair spoke to ET about their adventure. Suddenly you're not just plugging in your bike but you're plugging into people's lives in a very different way, and that brought on loads of experiences for us."
From the production team behind The Great British Bake Off comes reality TV’s latest obsession, The Great Pottery Throw Down, where, each season,10 to 12 contestants vie for the unofficial title of top potter and a custom ceramic trophy via weekly competitions designed to eliminate the weakest skilled or least creative of the bunch.
Some of the recurring challenges include working with porcelain, sculpting a free-standing creation, from working fountains to ornate toilets, and facing the fiery Japanese style of pottery known as Raku. In between main makes, the potters also have to compete in blind showdowns (where the judges do not know who makes what) and wheel-based speed throws, with clay often going flying in unexpected directions.
From directors Liz Garbus and Lisa Cortes comes a new documentary which examines the issue of voter suppression in America with the help of Stacey Abrams, the founder of Fair Fight Action and former candidate for governor of Georgia -- who lost a tightly contested race to Republican candidate Brian Kemp in 2018 after widespread claims of voter suppression.
Inspired by the life of artistKeith Knight, Hulu's new half-hour comedy follows Black cartoonist Keef (New Girl'sLamorne Morris) who is on the cusp of mainstream success when he's forced to navigate the racism and injustices he's been trying to avoid acknowledging for years. Viewers first meet Keef as he has a traumatic run-in with the police, who have mistaken him for a suspect that fits a similar description. The incident spurs Keef to start to see his comic characters come to life, as he grapples with how to move forward. Woke also stars Blake Anderson, T. Murph, Lara Goldie and Sasheer Zamata.
The road trip comedy from Valley Girl director Rachel Lee Goldenberg features Five Feet Apart star Haley Lu Richardson as Veronica, a high schooler who finds herself in need of an abortion, and Euphoria's Barbie Ferreira as Bailey, her former BFF -- and only hope of getting to Albuquerque for the procedure.
"I love the idea of normalizing the topic of abortion and reproductive rights but also telling a different perspective on it and how people shouldn't have to feel a certain way after getting an abortion," Ferreira told ET of why she was drawn to the story. "There's a whole range and spectrum of emotions that happen."
Netflix's new teen musical comedy series centers around high schooler Julie (newcomer Madison Reyes), who's lost her passion for music following the death of her mother. When three musicians -- Luke, Reggie and Alex -- from 1995, the year they died, suddenly appear as ghosts in her mother's old music studio in the present day, Julie slowly begins to find her love of singing and writing again. The boys' unlikely friendship and chemistry with Julie brings them to form their own band, and hence, Julie and the Phantoms is born.
Don't let the controversy over Netflix's promotional poster be the last you hear of Cuties. The French-language film, about an 11-year-old Senegalese Muslim girl named Amy, who rebels against her conservative family by joining a group of dancers at her school called "The Cuties," won the World Cinema Dramatic Directing Award at Sundance this year. Maïmouna Doucouré's feature directorial debut is a heartfelt coming-of-age film about tradition, religion and growing up online.
"I think [Mulan's] bravery and spirit is in every one of us," Liu told ET on the set of the epic remake. "Which is the very theme that we want to express. Like, it's nothing so unreachable. It's within every one of us and it's that very precious essence of every human being."
Season 2 of the gritty Amazon Prime series about a world where super-powered humans are anything but heroes introduces a new "supe" to the mix, bringing in You're the Worst star Aya Cash as Stormfront, a character who threatens Homelander's (Anthony Starr) standing as the Supes' unofficial leader and utilizes the powers of social media to advance her own questionable agenda.
"We were really looking to create the worst possible nightmare for Homelander and the worst thing that could happen to Homelander was a woman who wasn't scared of him and was stealing his spotlight because he is a big, gaping whole of insecurity," creator and executive producer Eric Kripke told ET of gender-flipping the comic role. "The idea that a woman could be more popular than him and not be scared of him, it's just so unbearable to him, so we did that."
Labor Day festivities might look a bit different this year, but you can get your BBQ fix in Chef’s Table's seventh volume, which dives deep into “the smoky, juicy world” of the long-standing culinary art. “BBQ is about community and bringing people together, and we felt that was an important theme to bring into the Chef's Table world,” creator David Gelb and executive producer Brian McGinn explained to ET. “Chef's Table: BBQ features a diverse assortment of perspectives and approaches to a fundamental style of cooking with fire and smoke that some say is as old as recorded history itself.”
Michaela Coel's unsettling and powerful exploration of her own sexual assault became the inspiration for one of 2020's most lauded series -- which first aired on BBC One and is now available in full on HBO. Get caught up before Coel receives her well-deserved flowers during next year's awards season.
Star Trek: Lower Decks is, as they say, boldly going where no Star Trek series has gone before: Into full-on comedy. The animated series -- which launches on Aug. 6 -- hails from Rick and Morty scribe Mike McMahan and leaves the cockpit to follow the support crew who "get all the paperwork signed, make sure we're spelling the name of the planet right, get to know all of the good places to eat."
The show is set in the year 2380 on Starfleet's least important ship, the U.S.S. Cerritos, with Jack Quaid voicing Ensign Brad Boimler and Tawny Newsome as the Romulan whiskey-swigging Ensign Beckett Mariner, plus Noël Wells, Eugene Cordero, Dawnn Lewis and Jerry O’Connell.
Beyoncé's new visual album was originally filmed as companion piece to her 2019 Lion King soundtrack, The Gift, but as the performer shared in an Instagram message, "I could never have imagined that a year later, all the hard work that went into this production would serve a greater purpose."
"The events of 2020 have made the film’s vision and message even more relevant, as people across the world embark on a historic journey," Bey wrote in an unusually lengthy note to fans ahead of the release of Black Is King. "We are all in search of safety and light. Many of us want change. I believe that when Black people tell our own stories, we can shift the axis of the world and tell our REAL history of generational wealth and richness of soul that are not told in our history books."
"With this visual album, I wanted to present elements of Black history and African tradition, with a modern twist and a universal message, and what it truly means to find your self-identity and build a legacy."
The beloved (and 11-time Tony-winning) Broadway musical is finally available to watch at home! Hamilton is streaming on Disney+ on July 3, 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.
Named for the 13th Amendment -- which abolished slavery in the United States and ended involuntary servitude except as a punishment for conviction of a crime -- this documentary from director Ava DuVernay combines archival footage with testimony from activists and scholars in an examination of the U.S. prison system -- taking a close look at how America's history of racial inequality drives the high rate of incarceration.
Your favorite Central Perk sextet is back on streaming on HBO Max! 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" as you enjoy all 10 seasons of the iconic sitcom.
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 CBS All Access now.
Looking for a serious escape? Go beyond. Star Trek: Picardis a hit with diehard and new Trek fans alike. With CBS All Access, you can also watch the five original Star Trek TV series and Star Trek: Discovery.
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