Here is an interesting new release available now from cable and digital providers as well as some titles that have recently become available for streaming.
Video on Demand
"Bad Times at the El Royale": Drew Goddard follows up "The Cabin in the Woods" with this outrageous thriller that takes place in a hotel that is split by the California and Nevada border in 1969. You've got Jeff Bridges as a priest, Jon Hamm as a furniture salesman, Cynthia Erivo as an R&B singer and Dakota Johnson, whose initial demeanor is puzzling at best. As our main characters all meet up in the hotel's lobby when trying to check in, it is clear that they all have very different reasons for being at the hotel, and none of them seem too enthused to make new friends. As the story unfolds, expect a lot of double-crossed antics, secret surveillance and a whole lot of things that are not what they seem. When it was released in theaters this past fall, the movie kind of died on the vine, but now it will find a bigger audience at home, where I suspect it could become a cult classic. Heavily stylized and remarkably clever, this is an action-packed tale with killer performances. (Cable and digital VOD; 4K Ultra HD available)
On streaming services
"Beautiful Boy": In the English-language debut feature from Belgian director Felix van Groeningen ("The Broken Circle Breakdown"), he tackles dueling memoirs written by a father and son. Steve Carell stars as journalist David Sheff, a man who fights back as his son Nic (played here by Timothée Chalamet) battles his demons, including cocaine and crystal meth. By combining their two points of view, we are treated to a raw portrait of love, forgiveness and occasional hopelessness. Nic undergoes a veritable seesaw of issues, and every time it seems that things are getting better, he relapses. Chalamet was nominated for best supporting actor at the Golden Globes and is nominated for Screen Actors Guild Awards. (Amazon Prime; 4K Ultra HD available)
"Leave No Trace": One of the rare films with a solid 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes after release, Debra Granik's follow-up to "Winter's Bone" is my favorite film of 2018. Ben Foster stars as an Iraq War veteran with PTSD who is living off the grid in a public park in Oregon with his teenage daughter (Thomasin McKenzie). He believes he is doing the right thing by teaching her survival tactics but doesn't consider the damage that their extreme way of life may be causing. After they get caught living in the woods, their lives are upended by social services, who try to force a reintegration into "real life." Nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards, including Best Feature. (Amazon Prime)