Every month, streaming services in Australia add a new batch of movies and TV shows to their libraries. Here are our picks for February.
In the offbeat drama “Horse Girl,” Alison Brie plays Sarah, a melancholy and socially awkward young woman who begins to believe her personal struggles could be rooted in some supernatural phenomenon in her family’s past. Brie co-wrote the screenplay with the movie’s writer-director Jeff Baena, drawing partially on her own experiences with mental illness. Though the film has some way-out elements, it’s ultimately an affecting look at someone who desperately wants to pin her problems on something other than inescapable heredity.
‘Locke & Key’
The comic book series “Locke & Key” has been a hot property in Hollywood for about a decade now, first getting optioned for a potential movie trilogy that never happened, and then for two television adaptations that did not make it beyond the pilot stage. Finally, Netflix is bringing the supernatural adventure to the screen, with the help of a creative team that includes the writer Joe Hill and the “Lost”/“Bates Motel” writer-producer Carlton Cuse. The comics fill six collected volumes, so if all goes well with the first season this TV “Locke & Key” could run for years, telling the epic story of the Locke family, the magical keys that give them powers, and the demons they awaken.
‘To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You’
Netflix has had a lot of success with teen-targeted romantic comedies, including the 2018 movie “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,” based on Jenny Han’s novel about a high schooler named Lara Jean Covey, whose life is upended when all her unsent love letters end up in the mail. In the sequel “P.S. I Still Love You” — also based on a book by Han — Lara Jean reconsiders the first film’s happily ever after ending, wondering if she picked the right boyfriend, and if the day-to-day reality of a relationship can match her fantasies.
‘Love is Blind’
In the reality dating series, “Love is Blind,” couples embark on a series of get-to-know-you outings — blindfolded — until they feel like they care enough about each other to get engaged. The pair then sees each other for the first time after the proposal, at which point the show follows them in the weeks leading up to their wedding. The singer Nick Lachey and his TV personality wife Vanessa Lachey are co-hosting this odd experiment, meant to determine if an instant physical attraction is a necessary component of romance.
The actress America Ferrera serves as an executive producer, a director and a guest star on the dramedy “Gentefied,” based on a similar web series, cocreated by Marvin Lemus and Linda Yvette Chávez. The show follows three Mexican-American cousins in a rapidly gentrifying Los Angeles, as they try to keep their grandfather’s taco shop operational. Set largely in the Boyle Heights neighborhood, “Gentefied” presents a portrait of Latinx Los Angeles culture threatened by modern economic and social factors.
Also arriving: “Serial Killer with Piers Morgan” Season 1 (Feb. 1), “Tom Papa: You’re Doing Great!” (Feb. 4), “Black Hollywood: ‘They’ve Gotta Have Us’” (Feb. 5), “The Pharmacist” (Feb. 5), “Uppity: The Willy T. Ribbs Story” (Feb. 5), “My Holo Love” (Feb. 7), “Who Killed Malcolm X?” (Feb. 7), “The Coldest Game” (Feb. 8), “Van Helsing” Season 4 (Feb. 8), “The Blacklist” Season 7 (Feb. 10), “Camino a Roma” (Feb. 11), “Narcos: Mexico” Season 2 (Feb. 13), “Cable Girls” Final Season (Feb. 14), “Isi & Ossi” (Feb. 14), “The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia” (Feb. 17), “The Chef Show” Volume 3 (Feb. 19), “Babies” (Feb. 21), “Puerta 7” (Feb. 21), “Spectros” (Feb. 20), “I Am Not Okay with This” (Feb. 26), “Altered Carbon” Season 2 (Feb. 27), “Followers” (Feb. 27), “All the Bright Places” (Feb. 28), “Babylon Berlin” Season 3 (Feb. 28) “Formula 1: Drive to Survive” Season 2 (Feb. 28), “John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum” (Feb. 28), “Queen Sono” (Feb. 28), “Restaurants on the Edge” (Feb. 28), “Unstoppable” (Feb. 28).
The actor Shia LaBeouf wrote the screenplay for “Honey Boy,” an indie drama based on some of the defining elements of LaBeouf’s own life — like his history with substance abuse, his combative relationship with his father, and his attempts to understand his childhood traumas via therapy. In a fascinating wrinkle, LaBeouf plays the father character, who hides his troubled past from his son, a rising child star played by Lucas Hedges and Noah Jupe at different ages. If nothing else, the film feels like it must’ve been cathartic for LaBeouf, though it should also resonate with any viewer who has daddy issues.
Al Pacino takes on a rare TV role in the new series “Hunters,” playing a Holocaust survivor who leads a band of Nazi-killing vigilantes in New York City, circa 1977. Unlike the fact-based movie “Munich,” “Hunters” is more of a pure pulp thriller. This is a flashy show, featuring period detail from one of New York’s wildest eras — plus an eclectic cast that includes Logan Lerman, Carol Kane, Saul Rubinek and Tiffany Boone. These stealthy heroes exact vengeance against smug villains who think they’ve gotten away with genocide.
Fans of the recent rock ‘n’ roll biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” should also enjoy “Rocketman,” another fast-paced spin through the life of a ’70s pop superstar. Taron Egerton plays Elton John, in a film that covers the outrageous singer-songwriter’s early years, when he was still figuring out his look and his sound, alongside his chief creative collaborator, the lyricist Bernie Taupin (Jamie Bell). Filled with great music, “Rocketman” is an entertaining look at a musician finding himself.
Also arriving: “Death in Paradise” Season 7 (Feb. 2), “All or Nothing: The Philadelphia Eagles” (Feb. 7), “Poms” (Feb. 7), “Spider-Man: Far from Home” (Feb. 28), “The Secret Life of Pets 2” (Feb. 29).
‘Miracle Workers’ Season 2
The first season of the writer/producer Simon Rich’s fantastical sitcom “Miracle Workers” was set in a bureaucratic, ineffectual version of heaven, governed by a lazy, insecure God (played by Steve Buscemi). The second season keeps the same cast — including Daniel Radcliffe, Karan Soni and Geraldine Viswanathan — except they’re now playing entirely different characters, in a new story, set in the Dark Ages. As with the show’s original version, this revamp uses absurdism and imaginative comic ideas to comment on Earth’s real, modern-day problems.
‘Everything’s Gonna Be Okay’ Season 1
Australian comedian Josh Thomas is the main draw for the sitcom “Everything’s Gonna Be Okay,” about a young man who unexpectedly relocates to Los Angeles and becomes the guardian of his two teenage half sisters after their American father dies. But Kayla Cromer and Maeve Press are just as charming as the sisters — one of whom is a high-functioning autistic savant, and the other of whom is a misfit teen struggling to fit in with her classmates. These girls’ vulnerability and passion animates this sweetly sentimental show.
‘Kidding’ Season 2
Given how popular documentaries and movies about the late children’s entertainer Fred Rogers have been lately, more people should be watching “Kidding,” a heartfelt series about a beloved TV host who tries to turn his personal emotional trauma into honest, relatable art aimed at kids. In season one, Jim Carrey gave a strong performance as Jeff “Mr. Pickles” Piccirillo, who was coping with the tragic death of his son. In season two — which will once again feature the whimsical, puppetry-inspired visual style of director Michel Gondry — Mr. Pickles works on getting his career and his marriage back on track.
‘Wrong Man’ Season 2
With documentaries like “Brother’s Keeper” and “Paradise Lost,” the filmmaker Joe Berlinger helped shape the true-crime genre, while shining a light on tragic mistakes within America’s criminal justice system. In season two of Berlinger’s series “Wrong Man,” he and his team spend six episodes digging into three cases, each of which concerns prisoners who’ve been incarcerated for decades based on relatively flimsy evidence. In this show, a group of legal and investigative experts pursue leads that the original investigators and prosecutors didn’t uncover — or that they perhaps deliberately chose to ignore.
‘Wu-Tang: An American Saga’ Season 1
‘Wu-Tang Clan: Of Mics and Men’
The remarkable saga of the hip-hop collective Wu-Tang Clan now comes to the small screen, in two forms. The director Sacha Jenkins’ four-part docu-series “Of Mics and Men” features interviews with every living member of the group, who each offer their own (sometimes conflicting) perspectives on how they changed the genre with their dense soundscapes and intricate lyrics. “An American Saga,” on the other hand, offers a slightly fictionalized version of Wu-Tang’s origin story, with a talented cast of young actors dramatizing the way the Clan overcame a hard life in New York City to become internationally famous musicians.
‘Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist’ Season 1
Jane Levy gives a winning lead performance in “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist,” a quirky dramedy about a harried young San Francisco coder who suddenly develops the ability to hear other people’s thoughts. Complicating Zoey’s life even further: this telepathy manifests as full-blown musical numbers, performed by the friends, family and co-workers whose minds she’s reading. Colorful and energetic, this series could well become the heir to “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” — another cult favorite aimed at musical theater buffs.
‘Better Call Saul’ Season 5
The creative team behind the “Breaking Bad” prequel series recently announced the show would be ending with season six, which means this latest run of episodes will begin bringing the story of corner-cutting lawyer Jimmy McGill to a close. The new “Better Call Saul” season picks up where last year left off, with the antihero (played by Bob Oedenkirk) settling into his “Saul Goodman” persona, while a change in leadership in the Albuquerque meth-trafficking business tests the resolve of criminal fixer Mike Ehrmantraut (Jonathan Banks).
Also arriving: “The Final Quarter” (Feb. 1), “Our Cartoon President” Season 3 (Feb. 3), “Hidden” Season 1 (Feb. 6), “Good Trouble” Season 1 (Feb. 25), “RuPaul’s Drag Race” Season 12 (Feb. 29).