We recommend: The best new movies and TV series
Priscilla: Starring Jacob Elordi—of ‘Euphoria’ fame and Cailee Spaeny—playing Elvis and his wife Priscilla Presley respectively, is an A24 production based on Priscilla’s memoir. The movie follows the intense and fairytale-like relationship that develops between the couple. The film got a 7-minute standing ovation when it premiered at the Venice Film Festival.
Reviews are fantastic. Scroll says the film has been delicately portrayed and the “film maintains an adroit balance between its characters.” Vox writes that the film “is not a ‘biopic’ about Priscilla Presley; it’s a memoir.” Our take: The film puts viewers in Priscilla’s shoes throughout, and we are already big fans of the director—Sofia Coppola—even Priscilla herself is, so we will not be missing out on this one. The film was released in theatres yesterday.
Kevin Hart & Chris Rock: Headliners Only: This one’s for all the stand-up comedy fans. This follows the two comedians—Kevin Hart and Chris Rock—as they’re on the road for their latest tour. Through this, we get a look at some behind-the-scenes conversations about their origins, how they became comedians and the way they think about the craft of comedy.
The reviews are decent. New York Times writes that the film is “aimed at comedy fans, even if they already know many of its stories.” OTOH Indian Express felt that the “movie is actively withholding the comedy.” Our take: Kevin Hart and Chris Rock are always entertaining, and we don’t mind watching them share some old and funny stories of their careers. You can watch the documentary on Netflix.
The Family Plan: What is a holiday movie watchlist without a Mark Wahlberg flick. The plot is quite simple, the seemingly perfect family has a devoted husband Dan Morgan (Mark Wahlberg) who is married to wife (Michelle Monaghan) and has an angsty teen daughter, a pro-gamer teen son and an adorable 10-month-old baby. They are on an impromptu cross-country minivan road trip to Las Vegas when their party is crashed by people who want Dan, aka a former agent, dead.
Reviews are kinda meh. The Guardian calls it a “glossy but weirdly forgettable tranche of content.” Hollywood Reporter is far harsher and writes: “If you were playing a drinking game cued to every cutaway reaction shot of the baby adorably giggling, you’d be dead before the film was over.” Our take: We suspect this usual Holiday action-comey formula will make for a good watch when you need something familiar in the background. The movie dropped on Apple TV+ yesterday.
Yoh! Christmas: This South African romantic comedy series follows Thando—a 30 year old woman—on her quest for love during Christmas. She lies to her family about having a boyfriend and, now, she must bring one home for Christmas in 24 days.
The reviews are not out for this one yet. Our take: We do like our basic bread-and-butter Christmas films, but with a less snowy winter setting in South Africa. The film dropped on Friday on Netflix.
The Delinquents: Here is an unusual pick for the weekend. From the Argentinian writer-director Rodrigo Moreno, this three-hour long film is a heist film that completely stole the show at the Cannes by bagging the ‘Best International Feature Film’. Why, you ask? Because it subverts the whole genre by not showing the heist at all.
Reviews are mixed, understandably. The Guardian calls it a “deadpan comedy which strides off down its own confident, eccentric path” and deems it “could be a cult classic.” Whereas Deadline concludes: “‘The Delinquents’ presents a box-office challenge… but the director should be high on anyone’s list of ones to watch.” Our take: We are definitely up for this challenge. The movie can be streamed on Mubi.
Here’s a new chapter…
The Crown Season 6: Part 2: After the disappointing first four episodes that released last month, the series is officially off to an end. The concluding episodes pull focus from the Princess Diana tragedy and will swiftly swerve to the positives as the show enters the new millennium. You can expect to see the Queen's golden jubilee celebration, royal weddings and the romance between the favourite family members Prince William and Kate Middleton. The entire series is available on Netflix.
Reacher Season 2: Based on the book of the same name by Lee Child, the spy-action-thriller series follows the titular Jack Reacher (Alan Ritchson)—a retired US military policeman—who lands into trouble as dirty cops and politicians need someone to blame. But, of course, they have messed with the wrong crowd. In the upcoming season, Reacher’s former military unit has become a target of torture which sets him on a mission to avenge his friends. FYI: It is from the makers of ‘Prison Break’ and ‘Scorpion’. The first three episodes of the new season dropped on Amazon Prime.
Fresh off the big screen…
Tiger 3: The third instalment of this Sallu Bhai blockbuster franchise deals with not a national security threat but a more personal provocation. Tiger (Salman Khan) and Zoya (Katrina Kaif) are given an ultimatum to either save their country or their son from the villain (Emraan Hashmi). We are as usual more excited for the SRK cameo:) The movie dropped on Amazon Prime on December 12.
Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour: Taylor Swift’s tour—that has revived economies of different nations and heralded her as Time Magazine’s person of the year 2023—has finally reached our homes as well. You can now dress up, dance and sing along to her hypnotic discography by streaming the concert film on Apple TV+.