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Stream on Demand: ‘The Assistant,’ ‘Radioactive’ and new documentaries ready to stream

UPDATED: Thu., July 23, 2020

By Sean Axmaker For The Spokesman-Review

What’s new for home viewing on Video on Demand and Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and other streaming services.

Top streams for the week

Julia Garner plays a personal assistant to a powerful executive (unnamed and largely unseen, yet a provocative presence) in “The Assistant” (2019, R), a drama of power dynamics and abuse in a toxic work environment. Filmmaker Kitty Green drew inspiration in part from Harvey Weinstein and his culture of intimidation at Miramax. (Hulu)

Rosamund Pike is Marie Curie in “Radioactive” (2019, PG-13), a drama about the life and achievements of the pioneering physicist and chemist. Sam Riley plays her husband and fellow scientist Pierre. Filmmaker Marjane Satrapi uses animation to help explore and explain the reverberations of her discoveries. (Amazon Prime Video)

The documentary limited series “Fear City: New York vs. The Mafia” (2020, not rated) looks at the mafia’s power in New York City in the 1970s and 1980s and the federal government’s campaign to take down the mob. (Netflix)

The 10-part documentary series “The Last Dance” (2020, TV-MA) charts the rise of the Chicago Bulls dynasty with Michael Jordan in the 1990s. A popular and critical hit when it first ran on ESPN, it’s now streaming on Netflix.

The documentary “John Lewis: Good Trouble” (2020, PG) profiles the venerated civil rights activist and Georgia congressman who passed away this month. Cable on Demand and VOD.

Pay-Per-View / Video on Demand

Jeff Daniels writes and stars as a disillusioned playwright who meets an enthusiastic young fan in the drama “Guest Artist” (2019, not rated).

Previously available as Premium offerings, music business drama “The High Note” (2020, PG-13) with Tracee Ellis Ross and Dakota Johnson and Oregon-set historical drama “First Cow” (2020, PG-13) are now at traditional VOD prices.

Debuting direct to VOD is investigative journalism drama “Most Wanted” (2020, not rated) with Josh Hartnett and thriller “The Rental” (2020, R) with Allison Brie and Dan Stevens.

Netflix

Joey King returns for the teen romantic comedy sequel “The Kissing Booth 2” (2020, TV-14), where she struggles with a long-distance relationship.

“Spotlight” (2015, R), the story of the Boston Globe reporters who uncovered the Catholic Church’s cover-up of child molestation by priests, won the Oscar for Best Picture. Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams and Michael Keaton star.

”Ip Man 4: The Finale” (China, 2019, not rated, with subtitles) brings the legendary Wing Chun teacher (played by Donnie Yen) to 1960s America, where he visits his student Bruce Lee and battles bigotry. Netflix also features the first three films in the series, which all offer impressive fight choreography.

More international cinema: Crime thriller “Offering to the Storm” (Spain, 2020, not rated, with subtitles), the final film in the Baztan Trilogy starring Marta Etura as police inspector Amaia Salazar (“The Invisible Guardian,” 2017, and “The Legacy of Bones,” 2019, are also on Netflix); sexy romantic drama “Romance Doll” (Japan, 2020, not rated, with subtitles); and social drama “Project Marathwada” (India, 2016, not rated, with subtitles) with Om Puri.

True stories: “The Remix: Hip Hop X Fashion” (2020, not rated) looks at black designers who have changed the face of modern fashion. Also new: “Love on the Spectrum: Season 1” (not rated), a reality show from Australia; and foodie series “Street Food – Latin America: Season 1” (TV-PG).

International TV: A brutal murder in a remote town reaches back to a decade-old unsolved murder in the crime thriller “Signs: Season 1” (Poland, not rated, with subtitles). Also new: crime comedy “How to Sell Drugs Online (Fast): Season 2” (Germany, TV-MA, with subtitles); English-language Viking comedy “Norsemen: Season 3” (Norway, TV-MA); reality competition series “Sing On! Spain: Season 1” (Spain, not rated, with subtitles).

Kid stuff: Magical cookies turn people into animals in the comedy “Animal Crackers” (China, 2020, TV-Y7), an animated film from China featuring the voices of Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Danny DeVito and Ian McKellen. Also new: animated special “Dragons: Rescue Riders: Secrets of the Songwing” (2020, TV-Y); “Ashley Garcia – Genius in Love: Part 2” (TV-PG); “The Larva Island Movie” (South Korea, TV-Y7), the animated spin-off of kids TV show.

Stand-up: “Jack Whitehall: I’m Only Joking” (2020, TV-MA).

Amazon Prime Video

A veteran CIA officer (James Purefoy) and a rookie field agent (Eréndira Ibarra) go after Mexico’s most powerful drug lord in “El Candidato: Season 1” (Mexico, TV-MA, with subtitles), clashing with the mayor of Mexico City (José María de Tavira) along the way.

Kid stuff: New episodes of “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” are now available.

Classics: Barbara Stanwyck is “Stella Dallas” (1937) in the classic Oscar-nominated melodrama and Loretta Young is “The Bishop’s Wife” (1948) in the Oscar-winning romantic drama with Cary Grant and David Niven.

Cult: “A Chinese Ghost Story” (1987) brings costume fantasy, action, romance, and comedy together for a colorful romp. Stars Leslie Cheung and Joey Wang return for “A Chinese Ghost Story II” (1990) and Tony Leung steps in for “A Chinese Ghost Story III” (1991). The prints are not top rate but the energy helps overcome the limitations. All from Hong Kong, not rated, with subtitles.

Stand-up: “Jim Gaffigan: Pale Tourist” (2020, TV-14)

Prime Video and Hulu

The documentary “Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love” (2019, R) from Nick Broomfield looks at the complicated relationship between singer/songwriter/poet Leonard Cohen and Norwegian artist Marianne Ihlen, famously remembered as his muse (Prime Video and Hulu).

Hulu

Sebastian Stan, Samuel L. Jackson and Christopher Plummer star in “The Last Full Measure” (2019, R), a war drama based on a true story of heroism.

HBO Max

Cynthia Erivo earned Oscar nominations for best actress and original song for “Harriet” (2019, PG-13), based on the life of Harriet Tubman, available on all HBO platforms.

Season four of the anthology series “Room 104” (TV-MA) begins with new episodes Friday nights on all HBO Platforms.

The animated kids show “Tig N’ Seek: Season 1” (TV-PG) follows the wacky adventures of an eccentric boy and his cat. New episodes on Thursdays.

Other streams

Brittany Grady stars as an aspiring singer-songwriter in “Little Voice: Season 1” (TV-MA), featuring original songs by co-creator Sara Bareilles. New episodes on Fridays. (Apple TV+)

Greta Gerwig directs and adapts “Little Women” (2019, PG), bringing a modern perspective to Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel of the lives of women in Civil War-era America.

Saoirse Ronan stars as Jo March, and Florence Pugh, Emma Watson and Laura Dern star. It was nominated for six Oscars, including best picture and adapted screenplay, and won for costume design. (Starz)

“Rogue Trip: Season 1” (not rated), co-produced by National Geographic and hosted by ABC correspondent Bob Woodruff and his son, Mack, is a travel series through unexpected locations. All eight episodes streaming. (Disney+)

The Summer Olympic Games have been postponed, but you can revel in the glories of a century of past games in “100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912–2012,” a collection of 53 feature-length and short documentaries from 41 editions of the Olympic Games. It streams on Criterion Channel. Also new: Streaming debut of the restored “Soleil Ô” (Mauritania, 1970, not rated, with subtitles), a satire of colonialism and racism featuring an interview with director Med Hondo; feminist indie sci-fi landmark “Born in Flames” (1983, not rated), featuring a new introduction by director Lizzie Borden; and a double feature of Joseph H. Lewis’ film noir masterpieces “Gun Crazy” (1950) and “The Big Combo” (1955).

Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. His reviews of streaming movies and TV can be found at streamondemandathome.com.

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