If you’re anything like me and find yourself falling into bed night after night wondering, “What just happened? Where did the day go?”, then you might have missed that Hollywood has finally been embracing our collective situation and releasing more and more films directly to streaming while theaters are still not able to be open anywhere near capacity.
Here’s a mix of new home theatrical releases and other recent movies that are worth taking a breather at night or on the weekend to check out:
The Croods: A New Age – My family really enjoyed this sequel that sees the Croods struggle as Eep (Emma Stone) exerts independence and considers a life with Guy (Ryan Reynolds) away from her parents and siblings. With that drama as the backdrop, the family stumbles upon the Bettermans (voiced by Peter Dinklage, Leslie Mann and Kelly Marie Tran) and considers joining them in their amazing walled utopia … but their paradise might not be all that it seems.
Wonder Woman 1984 – This sequel sees Diana Prince and her alter-ego Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) trying to stop a rich maniac (Pedro Pascal) who’s in possession of a magic wishing stone. But then she’s thrown when the love of her life (Chris Pine) somehow returns from the dead AND her once-nerdy co-worker (Kristen Wiig) transforms into a powerful feline supervillain. In short, there’s a lot going on here, which also pretty much sums up the decade of excess.
Let Him Go – Diane Lane and Kevin Costner shine in this taught thriller about a retired sheriff and his wife who go searching for their grandson in North Dakota, but have to contend with violent strangers who don’t want to be found.
Shadow in the Cloud – This movie is WILD, y’all. Chloë Grace Moretz stars as a World War II Flight Officer who’s charged with getting top-secret documents from New Zealand to Samoa. Only thing is, evil creatures — as in actual gremlins — start wreaking havoc on her base and within her B-17 bomber. If you’re down for lots of crazy twists, this is the pick for you!
Greenland – Comets: fun to watch streak across the sky … not so fun to watch barreling toward your planet. But that’s the scenario Gerard Butler and Morena Baccarin face in this disaster flick as they race to find somewhere their family can survive the impact.
Promising Young Woman – This smart, dark comedy floored me with its performances (led by an amazing Carey Mulligan), plot, soundtrack, message and twists. With its 4 Golden Globe nods, it’s sure to be in the Oscar race when nominations are announced March 15.
News of the World – Usually Tom Hanks is the star of any film he’s in. But a young actress named Helena Zengel is giving him a run for his money and is earning raves (and a Golden Globe nomination) for her role as a girl who was kidnapped as an infant and now needs to find her only living relatives. Hanks plays the Civil War vet who chaperones her treacherous journey.
Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar – This new release will take you on a trippy, color-soaked vacation alongside its hilarious characters. You can tell that Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo — who co-wrote Bridesmaids together —are having a blast playing Midwestern friends who leave their hometown for the first time EVER, and aren’t prepared for what awaits them in a magical resort town.
Willy’s Wonderland – If you want to get even weirder — like infinitely more weird — Nic Cage is happy to oblige. He plays a nameless janitor who agrees to work overnight at an abandoned family fun center. Where the animatronics come to life and try to murder people. (I will never go to Chuck E. Cheese again.)