Screen Crusades: Weekly Streaming Guide 5.7.21

Screen Crusades: Weekly Streaming Guide 5.7.21

- By Nicolás Delgadillo

Christopher Nolan's latest action epic finally arrives on streaming, Disney+ launches the newest Star Wars series, Shudder unleashes both new and classic horror, and more in this week's streaming guide


‘Monster’ (Netflix)

Monster tells the story of Steve Harmon (Kelvin Harrison Jr.) a seventeen-year-old honor student whose world comes crashing down around him when he is charged with felony murder. The film follows his dramatic journey from a smart, likeable film student from Harlem attending an elite high school through a complex legal battle that could leave him spending the rest of his life in prison.

Based on the 1999 Walter Dean Myers’ novel of the same name, the legal drama has an immensely talented cast that includes Jennifer Hudson, Jeffrey Wright, Jennifer Ehle, Tim Blake Nelson, Nas, A$AP Rocky, and John David Washington. It’s the feature directorial debut of Anthony Mandler, who is best known for his music videos and photography with a wide array of stars.

‘Star Wars: The Bad Batch’ (Disney+)

The Bad Batch is the latest of Star Wars' various animated series, and the first to premiere on Disney+. Originally introduced in the prior series, The Clone Wars, the Bad Batch are a squad of clone troopers that had genetic mutations occur during the cloning process. This has given them unique abilities that other clones do not, and together they form an elite squadron to battle of the front lines of the war.

The series begins with the squad dealing with the galaxy-shattering events of Order 66 and the end of the Clone Wars. It will certainly be interesting to see what happened to the clone army in between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, and the series also introduces a new female clone named Omega (Michelle Ang) who joins the Bad Batch on their missions.

‘Fried Barry’ (Shudder)

Fried Barry follows the story of a drug-addled degenerate who, after yet another bender, gets abducted by aliens. Barry takes a backseat as his alien visitor assumes control of his body and takes it for a joyride through Cape Town. What follows is an onslaught of drugs, sex and violence as Barry’s alien tourist enters the weird and wonderful world of humankind.

The feature directorial debut from award-winning music video director Ryan Kruger and starring newcomer Gary Green, the genre pushing, acid-washed, sci-fi horror has been praised by critics and embraced by fans around the world.

‘Jupiter’s Legacy’ (Netflix)

From the mind of legendary comic book writer Mark Millar and Frank Quitely, Jupiter's Legacy deals with the children of legendary superheroes who struggle to live up to the incredible feats of their parents. The Netflix adaptation will be helmed by Steven S. DeKnight, who is best known as the creator of the various Spartacus series, but is also no stranger to superheroes, having worked on series like Smallville and Daredevil.

The series explores how a world with superheroes would realistically play out. It deals with multiple issues including generational differences and conflict and differing sociopolitical views between the newer heroes and their parents. It stars Josh Duhamel, Ben Daniels, Leslie Bibb, Elena Kampouris, and more.

‘Tenet’ (HBO Max)

Christopher Nolan makes movies for the biggest screens possible, and his ever impressive action set pieces and effects have amazed audiences for years and established the director as one of the greatest filmmakers working today. Yet due to the pandemic, far too many people missed out on the chance to see his latest film, Tenet, in a movie theater. Thankfully, it's finally available to view on HBO Max, and it just may be Nolan's most ambitious work yet.

Tenet follows a secret agent (John David Washington) who is given a single word as his weapon and sent to prevent the onset of World War III. He must travel through time and learn how to manipulate it, bending the laws of nature in order to be successful in his mission and save the world. The rest is best left for the viewer to discover.

‘Goodnight Mommy’ (Hulu)

Goodnight Mommy is considered to be one of the most genuinely horrifying movies of 2015, and was selected as Austria's entry for the Oscars that year. The film follows a pair of young twin boys who are increasingly disturbed and frightened by their mother, who begins exhibiting strange behavior after she returns home from a surgery that has left her face covered in bandages. The boys begin to suspect that woman may not be their mother at all and things continue to grow increasingly terrifying.

The film is filled with intense dread that only continues to build, and proves to definitely not be for the squeamish. It's not an easy watch by any means, but it's also miraculously worth the hellish journey.

‘The Sons of Sam: A Descent into Darkness’ (Netflix)

During the summer of 1976, a man named David Berkowitz terrorized the streets of New York City. Berkowitz, who named himself The Son of Sam, went around attacking people seemingly at random by shooting at them, killing several and injuring many others. The serial killer also evaded police for far too long and left highly publicized letters that promised future murders.

The case grew into a lifelong obsession for journalist Maury Terry, who became convinced that the murders were linked to a satanic cult. He believes that Berkowitz did not act alone and tries to prove that the web of darkness behind the Son of Sam murders goes deeper than anyone imagined -- and his investigation costs him everything.

‘The Wicker Man’ (Shudder)

Based on the 1967 novel Ritual, The Wicker Man has become one of the most defining films of folk horror. Directed by Robin Hardy and starring Edward Woodward, Britt Ekland, Diane Cilento, Ingrid Pitt, and the incomparable Christopher Lee, the 1973 classic has proved itself to still be the best adaptation.

The story follows a devout Christian police sergeant who is tasked with investigating the disappearance of a young girl. The case takes him to the isolated island of Summerisle, where he's appalled to learn that its inhabitants have been engaging in strange rituals while following a form of Celtic paganism. The poorly-received American remake may have given us some iconic Nicolas Cage moments, but the original is a staple of true horror.

‘Unbreakable’ (Amazon Prime Video)

M. Night Shyamalan's Unbreakable was deconstructing the superhero genre years before doing so was considered new and unique - in fact, the 2000 film was far ahead of the massive superhero boom that Hollywood would later face. It also serves as the first installment of Shyamalan's Eastrail 177 Trilogy, named after the train crash that leads a man named David Dunn (Bruce Willis) to discover he has super powers.

Dunn's struggle to grapple with his powers - that make him seemingly indestructible - leads him to meeting Elijah Price (Samuel L. Jackson), a comic book expert who believes its his destiny to help Dunn become a true and proper superhero. It's considered to be one of the director's best films, and possibly one of the best superhero films period.

‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter’ (HBO Max)

Writer Seth Grahame-Smith is known for twisting history with horror fantasy. His best known work is the novel Pride & Prejudice and Zombies, and its thematic companion, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, received the big screen treatment in 2012. It follows the life of the iconic president as he goes from a young boy in Indiana to the leader of the country in the midst of a devastating war - all while leading a double life as a secret vampire hunter.

It's inherently silly but takes its ridiculous premise seriously, providing dark and stylish action and plenty of original ideas. It also features the song Powerless, one of the best and most underrated Linkin Park tracks out there.

Also streaming now:

Netflix - ‘Back to the Future Trilogy’, ‘Due Date’, ‘Dead Again in Tombstone’, ‘Fun With Dick and Jane’, ‘G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra’, ‘Green Zone’, ‘Mystic River’, ‘Never Back Down’, ‘Resident Evil: Afterlife & Extinction’, ‘Scarface’, ‘Stargate’, ‘Zombieland’

Hulu - ‘(500) Days of Summer’, ‘The A-Team’, ‘Almost Famous’, ‘Burning’, ‘The Crazies’, ‘Hannibal Rising’, ‘I Am Legend’, ‘The Haunting in Connecticut’, ‘The Iron Giant’, ‘Knowing’, ‘Machete’, ‘Lucky Number Slevin’, ‘Predator’, ‘Reservoir Dogs’, ‘Train to Busan’, ‘Vantage Point’, ‘Flight’, ‘Skyfall’, ‘Warrior’

Shudder - ‘House on Haunted Hill’, ‘13 Ghosts’, ‘Curse of the Demon’, ‘Frankenhooker’

HBO Max - ‘17 Again’, ‘Anaconda’, ‘Anger Management’, ‘Black Hawk Down’, ‘The Dirty Dozen’, ‘Dumb & Dumber’, ‘Mortal Kombat (1995)’, ‘Rush Hour Trilogy’, ‘300: Rise of an Empire’

Amazon Prime Video - ‘Aliens & Alien3 & Alien Ressurection’, ‘Resident Evil & Resident Evil: Apocalypse’, ‘The Da Vinci Code’, ‘The Green Hornet’, ‘The Sixth Sense’

Disney+ - ‘Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer’, ‘Wander Over Yonder’


Netflix - ‘Sleepless’, ‘Castlevania (Season 4)’, ‘Love, Death & Robots (Volume 2)’, ‘The Woman in the Window’

Hulu - ‘Robot & Frank’, ‘Wander Darkly’, ‘Saint Maud’

Shudder - ‘The Reckoning’, ‘Sator’, ‘Climate of the Hunter’, ‘The Funeral Home’, ‘Trickster’

HBO Max - ‘Greenland’, ‘Wonder Woman 1984’, ‘Those Who Wish Me Dead’

Amazon Prime Video - ‘The Underground Railroad’

Disney+ - ‘X-Men: The Last Stand

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