Each week we highlight the noteworthy titles that have recently hit streaming platforms in the United States. Check out this week’s selections below and past round-ups here.

Apollo 10 ½ A Space Age Childhood (Richard Linklater)

A delightful meditation on childhood in the summer of 1969 set literally in the shadows of NASA’s central operations in Houston, Richard Linklater’s contemplative and vividly animated Apollo 10 ½ A Space Age Childhood reflects on the filmmaker’s own experiences. It captures the joy and wonder of childhood through the eyes of Stan (voiced by Milo Coy as a child and, as an adult, a restrained and wise Jack Black), a ten-year-old who fantasizes about being recruited for “space camp” by NASA. His father (Bill Wise), a frugal but caring man, has uprooted his family from the city to a newly built suburban development in the shadow of the Astrodome and Astroworld amusement parks. Black’s adult narrator fills in the blanks for us with whimsical, nostalgic details that highlight just how dangerous childhood can be between abusive coaches, parents that thought nothing of allowing the kids to ride in the back of a pick-up truck at 70 miles an hour, and playing with explosives. – John F. (full review)

Where to Stream: Netflix

Beyond Blaxploitation

Taking a deeper look at Black cinema of the 1970s and beyond. The Criterion Channel’s new series features a number of highlights, including Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song, Across 110th Street, Black Caesar, Three the Hard Way, Dolemite, and beyond. Writing about one of the most notable selections, Erik Nielsen said, “Perhaps it is fate that an early era Blaxploitation, anti-capitalist film about an off-the-rails, pot-smoking cop who starts to mentally deteriorate because of racism from white officers on the force and insults from Black people he’s arresting, barely had its chance to reach an audience. Written, directed, and produced by its star Christopher St. John, 1972’s Top of the Heap is a tragic story of a Black artist struggling to create a singular vision in a Hollywood system dominated by white voices.”

Where to Stream: The Criterion Channel

Brighton 4th (Levan Koguashvili)

In Brighton 4th, the Georgian diaspora of Brooklyn’s Brighton Beach (an area known colloquially as “Little Odessa” for its largely East European and Russian communities) provide backdrop to a touching story of father (a former champion wrestler) and son (a decent man with an indecent gambling habit). Equally warm and melancholic with a rich vein of tragicomedy, Brighton is just the second narrative from Levan Koguashvili, a Georgian filmmaker who became toast of this year’s Tribeca Film Festival when Brighton 4th took home the award for Best Film in their “International” selection, as well as Best Actor (Levan Tediashvili, an astonishing find) and Best Screenplay (Boris Frumin, a writer and associate professor at NYU.) – Rory O. (full review)

Where to Stream: VOD

France (Bruno Dumont)

“My work is all about transfiguration… I’m not a naturalistic filmmaker at all.” So goes one of the most widely quoted statements by French auteur Bruno Dumont, now as noted for his bold stylistic experimentation across different genres as he is the dour, powerful slabs of “transcendental” cinema with which he first made his name at the turn of the millennium. Here lies a blindspot of director-focused appreciation: his latest film France has the appearance of a glossy, luxe piece of entertainment––almost a French Succession––that could appeal to a wide, even non-cinephilic audience across its home country. But those familiar with his output can’t help scan the precis of this film and perceive a likely Trojan Horse, or a piece of subversion at cross-purposes with its exterior sense. Is this the regressive underside of auteurism, that secretly wants our favorites to make a recognizably similar film each time out the block? – David K. (full review)

Where to Stream: The Criterion Channel

Jockey (Clint Bentley)

Clint Bentley’s Jockey sources its strength from its casting. Led by a career-best Clifton Collins Jr. and supported by more-than-solid performances from Molly Parker and Moisés Arias, the film leans on these three actors to tell a tried-and-true story. Bathed in the simmering goldenness of sunrises and sunsets, Jockey looks and feels like a classic sports movie, and a simple story about a man and a horse.  – Michael F. (full review)

Where to Stream: VOD

Mass (Fran Kranz)

Set in the meeting room of a modest Episcopalian church, two couples meet under tragic circumstances. For his directorial debut Mass, accomplished actor Fran Kranz is determined to wring out four incredible performances from four incredible character actors through the discussion of an extremely tough subject. It is mission accomplished as Kranz succeeds in finding understanding in the unthinkable. – Dan M. (full review)

Where to Stream: Hulu

Nitram (Justin Kurzel)

Whilst the Port Arthur massacre plays a particular role in the Australian psyche—a moment of national mourning that brought about an immediate reaction in comprehensive changes to its gun laws—Kurzel and his regular collaborating writer Shaun Grant (SnowtownTrue History of the Kelly Gang) are glinting their eyes at more global, contemporary concerns, which they see this tragedy as reflecting. – David K. (full review)

Where to Stream: VOD

Occidental (Neïl Beloufa)

French-Algerian visual artist and filmmaker Neïl Beloufa’s second feature, Occidental, opens in media res as its eponymous setting, the tawdry Hotel Occidental, is going up in flames. Its exterior is beset by clashing police and protesters while a man is vexedly trapped inside one of the inn’s rooms, seemingly more annoyed than distraught despite his presently dire situation. This familiar setup suggests that, by the time the film catches up with this scene, the chain of events that preceded it will have provided some clarity or context for the sequence and lead to a fuller understanding of how and why things wound up this way. – Kyle P. (full review)

Where to Stream: Underrated

The Shepherdess and the Seven Songs (Pushpendra Singh)

Northwest India’s Jammu and Kashmir region resides at the center of a longstanding geopolitical stalemate involving neighboring Pakistan. While those tensions are referenced in The Shepherdess and the Seven Songs, they are not the film’s focal point. Instead, paranoia and opportunism have become fully ingrained in the forest area’s mountainous bedrock. Of more importance is why these characters either accept or subvert such societal realities, and how they normalize modes of corruption and gender inequality under the guise of tradition or progress. – Glenn H. (full review)

Where to Stream: Projectr

Transit (Christian Petzold)

Though German filmmaker Christian Petzold built a cachet for twisty, sumptuous riffs on Alfred Hitchcock with Phoenix and Barbara, this reputation obscures that his films are inherently about communication and the layers of interference making that interaction so difficult. His glorious Transit lays bare that notion, from its framing of an enigmatic but empathetic narrator to its knowingly obtuse narrative of mistaken identities and bait-and-switches–nonetheless punctuated by half-a-dozen meaningful conversations with near-strangers. – Michael S.

Where to Stream: Amazon Prime

Zero Fucks Given (Emmanuel Marre, Julie Lecoustre)

Breaking out in Blue is the Warmest Color nearly a decade ago, Adèle Exarchopoulos has recently had a string of notable performances with Sibyl, Mandibules, and now last year’s Cannes Critics’ Week selection Zero Fucks Given. Finally arriving courtesy of MUBI, the actress plays a flight attendant for a lower-tier airline that contends with the soul-sucking monotony of entry-level work. Making for an ideal double feature with Jordan Tetewsky and Joshua Pikovsky’s recent Slamdance winner Hannah Ha Ha, Zero Fucks Given also eloquently explores millennial aimlessness in a capitalistic society that has no room for personal ambitions.

Where to Stream: MUBI (free for 30 days)

Also New to Streaming

The Criterion Channel

Young Mr. Ford
Starring Delphine Seyrig
Asian American Filmmaking 2000–2010
The World of Guru Dutt

Film Movement Plus

Raining in the Mountain


How to Survive a Pandemic (review)


Killing Them Softly

MUBI (free for 30 days)

Grand Illusion
Amores Perros
In the Name of the Italian People

Battle Royale


The Bubble (review)


The Contractor (review)

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