It’s that time of the week again, you’re slumped on the sofa armed with a bowl of snacks and a pint of something delicious, ready to endlessly scroll through Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+ in search of something to watch. Fear not, we’re here to help, saving you the time of doom-scrolling through endlessly awful titles, by putting together our picks for the ten best new releases to stream this weekend.
If you’re after an intense thriller, a modern arthouse flick or even an action-packed sci-fi adventure, this week in the streaming world is full of diversity with something out there to appease even the most curious tastes.
If ‘winners’ were ever a thing in the race for weekly quality content, Disney+ would be taking the crown this time around, with plenty of exciting new releases, from the long-anticipated Star Wars series Obi-Wan Kenobi to the important documentary, We Feed People, that shines a light on the heroic effects of key workers. With these two choices and eight others, below, take a look at our list of ten streaming essentials, below.
The 10 best new releases to stream this weekend:
10. Under the Volcano (1984) – Britbox – Available now
Britbox understandably loves a good British drama and they’ve got decades of classics to choose from too. This week sees the release of the 1984 drama Under the Volcano starring Albert Finney and Jacqueline Bisset, a compelling thriller that follows a day in the life of a fragile British consul in Mexico at the dawn of WWII, directed by the filmmaker behind The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, John Huston.
Featuring a very stylish Finney, Under the Volcano is a brooding drama set during a time that simmered with tension, violence and imminent war.
9. Wu-Tang: An American Saga: Series 1 (2019) – Disney+ – Available now
Released back in 2019, this rousing biopic about the formation of the hip hop group formed in Staten Island, New York City, in 1992, is a surprisingly riveting watch. Telling the story of the rise of such artists as RZA, GZA, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Method Man, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah and many more, series one of this Hulu show drops on Disney+ this weekend in an attempt to diversify its commercial content.
Starring such names as Ashton Sanders, Shameik Moore, Siddiq Saunderson and Erika Alexander, we’d recommend this series to anyone with a passion for ‘90s hip-hop.
8. The Negotiator (1998) – Disney+ – May 27th
Exploding onto the scene in the 1990s, American filmmaker F. Gary Gray worked with the likes of Ice Cube, Cypress Hill, Queen Latifah and OutKast before he made his breakout movie Friday in 1995. Three years later, the director would take another step up, helming The Negotiator in 1998, an action crime thriller starring Samuel L. Jackson, Kevin Spacey and David Morse.
Following a skilled police negotiator who is accused of corruption, the movie takes several twists and turns throughout its fairly long runtime, but you walk away from it very satisfied indeed.
7. Patti Cake$ (2017) – Disney+ – May 27th
Making a significant impact upon its release in 2017, Patti Cake$ centres around an aspiring rapper named Patricia Dombrowski, AKA Patti Cake$, who battles for music supremacy in her hometown in New Jersey. Steering the ship is Danielle Macdonald in the lead role, who commands the film with the perfect blend of electrifying energy and nuanced emotion, making her a character to easily sympathise with.
Starring alongside Sahr Ngaujah, Mamoudou Athie and Bridget Everett, Macdonald elevates the cast’s performances and makes this movie a must-see.
6. We Feed People (2022) – Disney+ – May 27th
In efforts to make their streaming platform more than merely Marvel and Star Wars content, Disney is making an active effort to provide more diverse choices for their subscribers. One such piece of content is the new documentary We Feed People from National Geographic Documentary Films, a movie that chronicles how a nonprofit company rebuilds nations in the wake of disaster.
A fascinating and inspiring story of true human selflessness and generosity, We Feed People should be on the top of everyone’s watchlists.
5. The Class (2008) – MUBI – Available now
Winning the Palme d’Or at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, The Class directed by Laurent Cantet is a complex look into education and radical thought. Available on MUBI right now, the film tells the story of the teacher and novelist François Bégaudeau, who plays a version of himself, in a drama that follows his teaching methods with the racially mixed students from a Parisian neighbourhood.
Inspiring and thought-provoking, with Cannes going on right now in Southern France, there’s never been a better chance to catch Cantet’s modern classic.
4. Stranger Things: Volume 1 (2022) – Netflix – May 27th
“Each season the production scale gets bigger and bigger and the stakes are really, really high this year, as they are always,” series star Sadie Sink explained about the highly-anticipated fourth series of the hit show, Stranger Things. Starring the likes of fan-favourites Millie Bobby-Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Noah Schnapp, Natalia Dyer and Caleb McLaughlin, the brand new series finally arrives after bated breath.
Taking the show to dark new levels of drama, the series could be a game-changer in the history of the Stranger Things show.
3. Prehistoric Planet: Episodes 1-5 (2011) – Apple TV+ – May 27th
Aside from Jurassic Park and Walking with Dinosaurs, the prehistoric beasts who used to roam the earth are rarely explored in TV and film. That is all about to change, however, with the release of Prehistoric Planet by Apple TV+, a series that details the majestic dinosaurs and extraordinary creatures which used to roam the lands, seas and skies, using baffling CGI to recreate the beasts.
Narrated by none other than the iconic David Attenborough, Prehistoric Planet promises to be a special nature documentary, unlike anything we’ve seen before.
2. Bacurau (2019) – MUBI – May 27th
Brazilian filmmakers Juliano Dornelles and Kleber Mendonça Filho bring this strange tale of unhinged violence erupting from a small fictional village to the forefront of the contemporary Western genre. As sinister acts of violence and intimidation from foreign tourists begin to terrorise an isolated Brazilian community, the film tells the story of the residents who begin to mobilise and defend their town and culture.
Drawing from historical and sociopolitical concerns from the current Brazilian landscape, Bacurau creates a strong, unhinged retaliation whilst also challenging national cinematic representation.
1. Obi-Wan Kenobi: Episodes 1-2 (2022) – Disney+ – May 27th
Gaining considerable internet hype, Obi-Wan Kenobi feeds not off the nostalgia for the original Star Wars films, but instead, the nostalgia for the prequels, demonstrating their pop-culture dominance over the uninspired sequel films. With an epic soundtrack, quality characters and brand new original concepts, Disney are going back to the groundwork laid by the prequels with Obi-Wan Kenobi, led by fan-favourite Ewan McGregor.
The first two episodes for the exciting new series will be released on May 27th, with fans of the show chomping to get their retinas on the brand new story from a galaxy far, far away.