Here is an interesting new release available now from cable and digital providers as well as a title currently available for streaming.
Video on Demand
"Paradise Hills": Spanish director Alice Waddington's debut film is a candy-colored sci-fi fantasy, at least on the surface. Emma Roberts stars as Uma, a young woman who has upset her family by declining the marriage proposal of a wealthy man she doesn't love. She suddenly wakes up on a remote island named Paradise Hills, which for her is anything but. Her roommates are Chloe (Danielle Macdonald from Netflix's "Dumplin'") and Yu ("The Farewell" star Awkwafina). Between the three women, they've all disappointed their families and have been sent away to conform. Everything is run by the Duchess (Milla Jovovich), who oversees custom treatments that target family wishes (“I’ve always wanted to go to a fascist boarding school," Uma says sarcastically). The plotline gets a little muddy along the way, but Waddington has designed a visually stunning world with sharp commentary on gender roles and expectations. (Cable and digital VOD)
Also on streaming services
"The King": David Michôd's sweeping historical drama is adapted from Shakespeare, but with many puzzling changes including more contemporary dialogue. Timothée Chalamet stars as King Henry V, a role that I'm afraid he truly lacks the gravitas for. Mostly, he sits around looking pale, fragile and grumpy. It isn't until the film ramps up to a battle against the French (including a brief role from Robert Pattinson with a dreadful accent as the Dauphin, the son of King Charles VI) that Chalamet appears to fully become one with the character. As he prepares his troops for war, one can't help but think that everybody involved watched "Braveheart" a few too many times. "Boy Erased" director Joel Edgerton co-wrote the screenplay with Michôd and also stars as Falstaff, the angel on the King's shoulder that tries to get him to do the right thing. Despite a strong supporting cast that includes Ben Mendelsohn, Lily-Rose Depp, and "Jojo Rabbit" star Thomasin McKenzie, the film is more often than not a total slog. This is the exact type of vehicle that makes the streaming wars so problematic - if I would have been forced to focus on what was happening on the big screen, I may have enjoyed it more. But, if you watch this on the couch with a cellphone within reach, I dare say that you'll be scrolling your social media feed sooner rather than later. All of that said, it just recently earned 12 Australian AACTA Award nominations (their equivalent to the Oscars), so you can take my utter boredom with a grain of salt. (Netflix, available in 4K Ultra HD)