Somehow, it's already August—and even if we're not going back to the movie theaters just yet, we've got plenty of new releases you can stream from the comfort of your home.
Week of August 3, 2020
An American Pickle
Brandon Trost directs Seth Rogen—twice—in this story about a Polish immigrant who falls into a vat of pickles and, after brining for 100 years, emerges in present-day Brooklyn. Rogen plays both the immigrant, Herschel Greenbaum, and his great-grandson, Ben. This absurd comedic premise is most welcome in these complicated times. The film begins streaming on HBO Max August 6.
Read about writer Simon Rich’s inspiration behind An American Pickle here.
A Thousand Cuts
As co-founder and CEO of the top Filipino news site, Rappler, journalist Maria Ressa has faced intense backlash by President Rodrigo Duterte in his effort to crack down on news media. Ramona S. Diaz’s new PBS documentary traces Duterte’s campaign against Ressa and, more broadly, the war between the press and his government. Available on PBS and Virtual Cinemas beginning August 7.
In Zhang Yimou’s Oscar-nominated crime drama, a naive teenager is recruited to be a servant for a ganglord’s mistress and finds himself deep in Shanghai’s 1930s criminal underworld. A digitally restored version is available for the first time on Blu-ray starting August 4. Virtual screening options available through Film Movement Classics.
Netflix’s new original sports documentary takes an in-depth look at ex-Paris Saint-Germain, Arsenal, and Real Madrid star Nicolas Anelka’s controversial career. It opens with the French football player talking to camera: “I’m a footballer, I wasn’t there to have fun. If you really like me and want to do what I’ve done, you’ll only make enemies.” Stream the film on Netflix starting August 5.
The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum
A brilliant work of 1970s political filmmaking, The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum follows a young woman who succumbs to police and tabloid scrutiny after spending a night with a suspected terrorist. Directed by Volker Schlöndorff and Margarethe von Trotta, the film is an adaptation of Nobel Prize winner Heinrich Böll’s powerful novel. Criterion Collection’s new digitally restored version is available on Blu-ray August 4—or you can watch it now on the Criterion Channel.