What to Watch

What to Watch This Week: Poor Things, The Boy and the Heron, and More

This week's recommendations also include an apocalyptic mystery with a stellar cast, the return of a singular TV detective, and a psychological thriller led by Thomasin McKenzie and Anne Hathaway.

by | December 7, 2023 | Comments


Along with a black comedy in which Emma Stone basically plays Frankenstein’s monster, we’ve got an anime fantasy flick, Julia Roberts facing an apocalypse, the return — and once again the exit — of the popular character Monk, and a psychological thriller with Anne Hathaway.

92% Poor Things (2023)

First up and hitting theaters is the black comedy Poor Things, which also sponsored this week’s video. Let’s start with that stellar cast: Emma Stone and Willem Dafoe lead the way, but Poor Things also features names like Mark Ruffalo, Ramy Youssef, and Jerrod Carmichael.

Reason two to give this one a go is the fun and interesting premise. Based on the 1992 novel of the same name by Alasdair Gray, it follows a young Victorian woman who is resurrected by a scientist and runs off with a corrupt lawyer to really find herself.

The third reason is that the Yorgos Lanthimos-directed film is already rich with praise from critics. After premiering at the Venice Film festival in September and earning the festival’s highest honor, critics call this Certified Fresh movie “Wildly imaginative and exhilaratingly over the top” and a bizarre, brilliant tour de force for its director and star.

Where to Watch: In theaters

97% The Boy and the Heron (2023)

Also hitting theaters this week is the Japanese animated fantasy film The Boy and the Heron. Reason one to immerse yourself in this fantastical world — complete with a talking gray heron, of course — is that it was written and directed by the legendary Hayao Miyazaki, co-founder of Studio Ghibli and one of the most accomplished filmmakers in the history of animation.

And speaking of Studio Ghibli — which is behind The Boy and the Heron — it is responsible for five of the 10 highest-grossing anime films in the history of Japan, including the Oscar-winning film Spirited Away. They do fantastic work, in other words.

The third reason to give this one a shot is the star-studded English-speaking voice cast that has stepped into these roles for its release Stateside. That includes two Batmen — Robert Pattinson and Christian Bale — as well as Gemma Chan, Dave Bautista, Florence Pugh, Mark Hamill, and the list goes on. Seriously.

Where to Watch: In theaters

73% Leave the World Behind (2023)

Arriving on Netflix this week is the apocalyptic thriller Leave the World Behind, and if reason one to see this was only one word, it would be Julia. We mean, of course, Julia Roberts, who not only produced the film, but also stars in it alongside such accomplished folks as Mahershala Ali, Ethan Hawke, and Kevin Bacon.

Another reason not to leave Leave the World Behind behind — trust us, that tracks — is the creepy and intriguing premise about a family in a luxurious vacation home who are visited by two strangers in the night with news of impending doom. This looming disaster gets more terrifying by the minute as they all endure it together.

A third reason is that this film was written and directed by Sam Esmail, whose name you may recognize as the creator of Mr. Robot – ’nuff said. But just for good measure, he also worked on the Prime Video series Homecoming with — wait for it — Julia Roberts.

Where to Watch: Netflix

95% Mr. Monk's Last Case: A Monk Movie (2023)

Landing on Peacock this week is Mr. Monk’s Last Case: A Monk Movie. Of course, the first reason to tune in to this is that… he’s back! Tony Shalhoub’s Adrian Monk character was last seen delighting audiences on the USA network back in 2009, some 14 years ago.

Speaking of which, the second reason to check out this movie is that the show was a massive hit. With an overall Fresh Tomatometer score in the low 90s, Monk won eight Emmys over eight seasons and set the record for the most-watched scripted drama episode on cable in 2009 until The Walking Dead surpassed it three years later.

The third reason to get into Mr. Monk’s Last Case is all the familiar faces in front of the camera — like Shalhoub, Melora Hardin, Ted Levine, and Hector Elizondo — along with longtime show director Randy Zisk, who is also helming this movie.

Where to Watch: Peacock

81% Eileen (2023)

And lastly, also creeping into theaters this week is the psychological thriller Eileen. The film stars Thomasin McKenzie along with names like Anne Hathaway and the always great Shea Whigham. They help tell this story set in 1960s Boston about an unhealthy friendship between two women working at a juvenile detention center.

The second reason to check this out is that it’s based on the award-winning debut novel of the same name by Otessa Moshfegh, who also adapted the screenplay with her husband. Impressive.

And reason three is that after premiering at Sundance earlier this year, Eileen is already Certified Fresh on the Tomatometer with a Critics Consensus that calls Hathaway and McKenzie “a well-matched duo.” Sounds like a winner to us.

Where to Watch: In theaters

Hopefully our recommendations helped you fill up your entertainment calendar this weekend. Be sure to let us know in the comments what you watched, whether it was on this list or not!

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