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What to Watch on TV and at the Movies This Week

‘Pamela, a Love Story,’ ‘Maybe I Do,’ ‘Shotgun Wedding,’ ‘Close,’ ‘You People’

Pamela Anderson in "Pamela, a love story."
Pamela Anderson in "Pamela, a Love Story."
Netflix

Get ready for new shows and movies starring Pamela Anderson, Eddie Murphy, Richard Gere, Diane Keaton, Susan Sarandon and Jennifer Lopez. Whether it’s on cable, streaming on Prime Video or Netflix, or opening at your local movie theater, we’ve got your must-watch list for the week. Start with TV and scroll down for movies. It’s all right here.

​On TV this week…

Pamela, a Love Story

Liked last year’s smash Hulu hit Pam & Tommy? Or hated it? Or hated yourself for loving it? In any case, get Pamela Anderson’s own side of her tumultuous life story in a documentary by double-Emmy-nominee Ryan White, whose 2022 doc Good Night Oppy, about NASA’s lovable Mars Exploration Rover robot, is a must-see. 

Watch it: Pamela, a Love Story, Jan. 31 on Netflix

Don’t miss this: The 10 Network TV Shows We’re Most Excited to Watch This January

This week on AARP Members Only: Quick Questions for Your Honor star Hope Davis

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Your Netflix watch of the week is here!

You People, R (2023)

Who wants Jonah Hill as a son-in-law? Not Eddie Murphy and Nia Long in this Netflix original movie from Black-ish creator Kenya Barris. Barris and Hill are the writers on this head-flipped Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.

Watch it: You People, in theaters, on Netflix Jan. 27

Related: Eddie Murphy’s Best Movies (Ranked!)

Don’t miss this: The 13 Best Things Coming to Netflix in January

Your Prime Video watch of the week is here!

Shotgun Wedding, R (2022)

Shotgun Wedding is silly in the best possible way: a destination wedding rom-com that never loses sight of how ridiculous such nuptials are at the best of times. Darcy (Jennifer Lopez) has cold feet; Tom (Josh Duhamel) is a groom-zilla. Together they bring their zany, needy and resentful family and friends to a remote Philippines island resort. Enter pirates brandishing automatic weapons. Mayhem, naturally, ensues. Lopez embraces her goofy side, Duhamel plays it straight and the MVP is Jennifer Coolidge (The White Lotus) as the mother of the groom who’s up for anything, including grabbing guns and going ballistic. Also fun: Cheech Marin as the bride’s father, the great Sonia Braga as his embittered ex and Lenny Kravitz as Darcy’s wildly sexy (and uninvited) ex. It’s the rom-com equivalent of comfort food — like wedding cake with extra frosting washed down with champagne. —Thelma M. Adams (T.M.A.)

Watch it: Shotgun Wedding, on Prime Video Jan. 27

​Don’t miss this: The 11 Best Things Coming to Prime Video in January

What’s new at the movies…

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Close, PG-13

In the waning summer, 13-year-old besties Rémi (Gustav De Waele) and Léo (Eden Dambrine) thrive in a boyhood paradise, racing bikes down sunny country roads, chasing through fields of flowers, sharing dreams. However, upon entering high school, their bond buckles. The duo’s affectionate ease doesn’t meld with the student herd’s social norms. Outgoing Léo enters and assimilates, making new friends and joining the (brutal) hockey team. Sensitive musician Rémi begins to withdraw. Their connection, so beautiful, caring and authentic, becomes awkward on campus. As Léo acclimates, Rémi retreats — and spirals. The fracture is devastating for the boys and the audience, as Léo realizes the paradise he’s not only lost, but has been complicit in destroying. Belgium’s Oscar contender is a tactile, subtle, moving film about shattered innocence, the pressures of masculinity and how wondrous but fragile that intimate friendship among young boys can be. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Close, in theaters Jan. 27

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ One Fine Morning, R

Léa Seydoux (No Time to Die) brings a luminous naturalism recalling Jean Seberg to this nominee for AARP’s Movies for Grownups award for best foreign language film. While jump-starting her sex life with a passionate affair, pixie-haired Parisian widow, translator and mother Sandra (Seydoux) tends her 8-year-old and her aging father (heartbreaking Pascal Greggory), who’s stricken by a neurodegenerative disease. An adored philosophy professor, he’s losing words faster than Sandra can translate them. It’s a complex portrait of a working woman as she, her sister and mother struggle to find assisted living for the scholar while his mind and body deteriorate. As they move him from one institution to the next, some better, some worse, trying to balance their budgets and his dignity, it appears that when it comes to eldercare, the French social safety net is as challenging as ours. —T.M.A.

Watch it: One Fine Morning, in limited theaters Jan. 27

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Maybe I Do, PG-13

Two long-married couples (Richard Gere and Diane Keaton, Susan Sarandon and William H. Macy) collide when their romantically involved kids (Emma Roberts, Luke Bracey) stage a meet-the-parents dinner. The night is a star-powered food fight, until the parents process their considerable baggage. Gere’s been splitting the sheets with Sarandon, and Keaton and Macy share history, too. While the director can’t quite harmonize the famous quartet’s individual acting styles, it’s fun to see Sarandon all sexy in a silky robe seducing the resistant Gere, and the light in the eyes of Macy and Keaton as they come to see each other in a way their own spouses can’t. Would kids ever say “I do” if they knew all the I-don’ts of their parents? In this frothy rom-com with a shot of vinegar hooked to Valentine’s Day, of course they will. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Maybe I Do, in theaters Jan. 27

Also catch up with …

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Saint Omer, PG-13

Somewhere in the Law & Order archive there must be an infanticide episode, but none as measured, probing and intimate as Saint Omer. A Senegalese student living in Paris drowns her 15-month-old daughter; a French-born novelist (four months pregnant) attends the trial. The latter’s seeking material for a book about a modern-day Medea. In Alice Diop’s short-listed French entry for this year’s Oscars, two remarkably restrained actresses — Kayije Kagame and Guslagie Malanda — play women contemplating motherhood from opposite sides of the judicial dock. Both are intellectuals of the African diaspora, struggling to be seen in the world while coping with universal challenges: withholding mothers, impossible expectations and emotional denial. A clear-eyed Diop uses a 2013 legal case, mixing fact and fiction to explore her characters. She asks the unaskable: What could possibly make a mother slay her daughter, and what can audiences learn from the plight of a woman who does the unthinkable? —T.M.A.

Watch it: Saint Omer, in theaters

Night Court 

John Larroquette returns as a sardonic prosecutor turned defense attorney in the reboot of the classic show that made him famous, with Melissa Rauch as Judge Stone (playing the daughter of Harry Anderson’s original Judge Stone character).

Watch it: Night Court, Tuesdays at 8 p.m., on NBC

​Don’t miss this: How (and Why) John Larroquette Landed Back in ‘Night Court’

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ A Man Called Otto, PG-13

Wait — is that the famously nice ​​Tom Hanks dressing down two hardware store employees undeserving of his ire? What have they done to our beloved actor? In A Man Called Otto (based on the number 1 best-selling novel and Swedish film hit A Man Called Ove), Hanks plays ill-tempered widower Otto Anderson, who oversees his neighborhood with grimace and furrowed brow. Though the dramatic comedy signals that a break in his frosty temperament must come, Hanks doesn’t let on as to when the ice will crack. The work of thawing Otto is left to others. Will their acts of reclamation outpace his plans to take his life? There are the old neighbors who were close with him and his late wife, Sonya (played in flashbacks by Hanks’ son Truman as the young Otto and Rachel Keller as Mrs. Anderson). There are new folks who extend him a grace that he hasn’t quite earned. (That these characters are Black, Latino or trans suggests the filmmakers crafted a sentimental parable for our times, a notion sure to elicit some to cry, “Humbug.”) But it is Mariana Treviño, as Marisol, a recent Mexican immigrant and Otto’s new neighbor, who serves as the movie’s blast of affirming light so searing even Otto feels it. Hanks fans may flock to A Man Called Otto. Treviño is the unexpected quasar here. —Lisa Kennedy (L.K.)

Watch it: A Man Called Otto, in theaters

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, PG-13

In this must-see Knives Out sequel, sleuth Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) attends a murder mystery party thrown by a Musk-like zillionaire (Edward Norton). Hilarity and homicide ensue.

Watch it: Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, on Netflix

1923

In the hotly awaited prequel to Yellowstone, Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren (who played a married couple in 1986’s The Mosquito Coast) play Montana’s Jacob and Cara Dutton, the great-great-uncle and great-great-aunt of Yellowstones John Dutton (Kevin Costner). They cope with pandemics, drought, the end of Prohibition, the start of the Great Depression and villainous enemies played by Game of Thrones’ Jerome Flynn and former James Bond Timothy Dalton. Not a bad lineup for Ford’s TV series debut.

Watch it: 1923, on Paramount+

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Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, Season 3 (Amazon original)

Fans of Amazon’s adaptation of Clancy’s Jack Ryan series, with John Krasinski starring as the intelligence operative once played in the movies by Harrison Ford, have been waiting three years for this latest season. Krasinski’s superspy will be hopscotching across Europe attempting to save the planet from World War III, but this time he’s also running from his own CIA, having been framed for … something or other.

Watch it: Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, on Prime Video

And read an interview with Wendell Pierce: Meet Broadway’s First Black Willy Loman in ‘Death of a Salesman’

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Top Gun: Maverick

Feel the need for speed? Tom Cruise’s greatest hit, the sequel to his 1986 flyboy epic, is now streaming.

Watch it: Top Gun: Maverickon Paramount+on Prime Video and on demand

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Babylon, R

Oscar darling Damien Chazelle (La La Land) has made a big, bubbly, tap-dancing, coke-snorting extravaganza set in the 1920s and early 1930s. Imagine a big, fat Hollywood orgy with leading lady Margot Robbie as an ambitious starlet, Brad Pitt as a jaded silent film star, Jean Smart as a gossip columnist and breakout Diego Calva channeling Al Pacino. The salacious period piece unpacks the explosive moment when silent movies began to fade along with many of their stars, and the world of talkies rose up to reinvent moving pictures and raise its own matinee idols. The performances are fun, the music raucous, the costumes glorious. And yet, the entire visual feast of a movie recalls the excessive party scene in Baz Luhrmann's overstuffed The Great Gatsby, beautiful and damned. Sooner or later, the drugs wear off, the morning comes, and the story disappears into the dusty light of day. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Babylon, in theaters

The Volcano: Rescue From Whakaari

Rory Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy’s Oscar-nominated documentarian daughter, presents a spectacular disaster film that’s also an inspiring true story of 47 quick-thinking people trapped by an erupting volcano on an island off the coast of New Zealand. It was the No. 1 Netflix Original hit this week.

Watch it: The Volcano: Rescue From Whakaari, on Netflix

Don’t miss this: Members Only Access: Rory Kennedy interview

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Women Talking, PG-13

Fans of The Handmaid’s Tale may like this smarter, more arty movie inspired by the horrific true story of women in a Mennonite religious community who were drugged and raped in their sleep by men. Eight women gather in a hayloft to debate whether to flee or submit meekly to unseen, impenitent male authorities. The cast is fantastic, led by Judith Ivey, Frances McDormand, Rooney Mara, Claire Foy and Jessie Buckley. For a film that’s basically all talk, it’s highly dramatic, and gorgeously photographed. —Tim Appelo (T.A.)

Watch it: Women Talking, in limited theaters, wide release Jan. 27

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Living, PG-13

Bill Nighy is at his very best, unflinching, unflagging, as heartbreakingly useful, very proper British bureaucrat Mr. Williams. His life has been an homage to dutiful respectability. As his doctor gives him a terminal prognosis, he realizes that for all his proper behavior from birth to near retirement, he forgot to live, to give and receive joy, to risk and rise. Based on a simple yet elegant screenplay adapted by Kazuo Ishiguro (The Remains of the Day) from the 1952 Japanese masterpiece Ikiru, this wise and moving drama is an existential journey that celebrates learning how to live life, in all its fleeting beauty — and a reminder not to wait until the last minute to celebrate the wonders of existence on this lonely planet. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Living, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Corsage, NR

Vicky Krieps (Phantom Thread) thrills in a creative burst of historical fiction that falls between Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette and the Princess Di film Spencer. She plays Sissi, the iconic empress of Austria, wife to Emperor Franz Joseph and mother of four. Exuberantly written and directed by Marie Kreutzer, the film begins when the beauty has a royal midlife crisis at 40. She's fed up with trying to keep up appearances in the social straitjacket of her corset. Groomed to be in the public eye, sometimes adored, sometimes criticized, she’s rarely valued for her individuality. This astounding film reimagines the breakthrough moment of Elisabeth’s rebellion to reclaim herself and her agency, to slip out of life’s corset and, even if it’s only for one shining moment, dance like nobody’s watching. It’s both exhilarating and tragic. For another popular 2022 take on her life story, try Netflix’s The Empress—T.M.A.

Watch it: Corsage, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Avatar: The Way of Water, PG-13

Welcome back to the distant moon Pandora, the paradise of the saintly, otherworldly Na’vi people, menaced by nasty, gnarly Col. Miles Quaritch. The sequel to the biggest film hit ever boasts whale-like tulkun, skimwings, ilus and ikran, dragon-like predators that make the fire-breathing beasts in Game of Thrones seem like beagles. Director James Cameron completely succeeds at world building — he’s the Jacques Cousteau of CGI undersea photography. Why is it a lock for a visual effects Oscar? Because it may be the movie that most exemplifies why we should go out to the theater for that big-screen, big special effects experience. Who doesn’t love iridescent sea creatures, fiery cinders and weapons poking into the theater through the magic of 3D? If there’s only one movie you put on pants and leave the house for, this one is it for the visuals alone. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Avatar: The Way of Water, in theaters

Ticket to Paradise

Divorcees (George Clooney and Julia Roberts) jet to Bali to prevent their lovestruck daughter (Dopesick's Kaitlyn Dever) from making the mistake they made: getting married. Clooney and Roberts are friends in real life, and this is their fifth movie together, so their bickering is masterfully amusing.

Watch it: Ticket to Paradise, on Peacock

Don’t miss this: Julia Roberts’ Best Rom-Com Roles, Ranked!

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ The Whale, R

After decades off Hollywood’s radar, Brendan Fraser leaps back into the spotlight as a front-runner for the best actor Oscar, playing Charlie, an online college writing teacher who left his wife for a man. His lover died, and he treated his grief by overeating to the point of dangerous obesity. His late lover’s sister (Hong Chau) visits to harangue and take care of him. His enraged ex-wife (formidable Samantha Morton) gives him bad vibes, as does his neglected, remarkably nasty teen daughter (Sadie Sink). A young missionary from a local cult (Ty Simpkins) tries to redeem Charlie, or rather himself. It’s as grueling and overwrought as director Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan but not excruciating like his notorious Jennifer Lawrence film Mother! What makes it a must-see is Fraser’s daring, difficult, deeply moving performance as an infinitely kind and regretful man at the end of his rapidly fraying rope. —T.A.

Watch it: The Whale, in theaters

Neil Young: Harvest Time, Unrated

If you liked The Beatles: Get Back, try Neil Young’s documentary about the making of his 1972 smash hit Harvest, an album so good, Dylan complained that Young was invading “my thing.” Young tapped a similar vein of Americana in immortal tunes like “Heart of Gold,” “Old Man,” “The Needle and the Damage Done” and “Are You Ready for the Country?” Seeing his creative process in a movie that takes you back to a groovier time is wonderful. It’s only screening in limited theaters starting Dec. 1. If you can’t make it to the movie, there’s a 50th-anniversary boxed set of the album, released Dec. 2, which also includes performances from his 1971 BBC concert.

Watch it: Neil Young: Harvest Time, in limited theaters

Don’t miss this: Neil Young on His New ‘World Record,’ Beck NFL Controversy and Converting Kanye to Climate Action

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⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, PG-13

In the most eagerly anticipated superhero movie of all, Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Shuri (Letitia Wright), War Dog Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) and Everett Ross (Martin Freeman)  fight to protect Africa’s best-kept-secret kingdom. Instead of recasting the first film’s central role of King T’Challa after beloved star Chadwick Boseman died of cancer, the sequel makes the character’s death an emotional engine driving the plot. Nyong’o said this “put our grief to good use.”​

Watch it: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, in theaters

Don’t miss this: ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’: Strong Women, Spock-Like Fish Men

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ The Fabelmans, PG-13

​In the front-runner for the best picture Oscar, boy meets camera — hilarity and pathos ensue. That’s the good part of Steven Spielberg’s wobbly autobiopic about movie nut Sammy Fabelman (Gabriel Labelle) growing up absurd (and Jewish) in white-bread suburbia 60 years ago. As electronics genius Bert Fabelman (Paul Dano) drags his wife (Michelle Williams), three daughters and Sammy from South Jersey to points west, Spielberg studs the film with inspired household slapstick but falls short on revelation or epiphany. He and cowriter Tony Kushner diagram rather than dramatize the temperamental clash between an orderly scientific dad and a disorderly artistic mom; the couple forms a fraught emotional triangle with a ubiquitous best friend (Seth Rogen). Judd Hirsch, Jeannie Berlin and David Lynch steal scenes, but Spielberg’s film sense (sort of) saves the day, especially when Sammy stages mini epics with his Boy Scout troop and uncovers family secrets in home movies. If you’re Sammy, or Steven, movie love conquers all. —Michael Sragow (M.S.)

​Watch it: The Fabelmans, in theaters and on demand

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Causeway, R

Jennifer Lawrence returns to her indie roots in a melancholy yet redemptive drama, playing Lynsey, an Afghanistan war vet recovering from a traumatic brain injury. Rebuilding her life in working-class New Orleans, she moves back in with her alcoholic mother (Succession’s Linda Emond). Lynsey’s always had to be the adult in the room; she went to war pre-traumatized. To regain her independence, she gets a job as a pool cleaner — this is the kind of movie where you feel every stroke of the leaf skimmer. She also befriends a brokenhearted, beer-drinking, one-legged mechanic (a grounded and compelling Bryan Tyree Henry). He gradually teaches Lynsey how to make peace with loss, live simply and create a family of choice, not biology. Causeway is a small film with a big heart. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Causewayin theaters and on Apple TV+

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ The Banshees of Inisherin

King Kong vs. Godzilla is a pipsqueak squabble compared to the titanic acting duel of Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson in this fable set in a spectacularly quaint 1923 village off Ireland’s coast. It’s an Oscar magnet with a perfect 100 percent Rotten Tomatoes critics’ score. Sweet, dim farmer Pádraic (Farrell) demands that bright, gloomy composer Colm (Gleeson) explain why he’s abruptly ended their best friendship. The “feckin’ nutbag” won’t, and threatens violence if Pádraic won’t let him be. A black comedy with more than a wee bit o’ green, it makes you feel resident in the way director Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri took you to that feisty town. The locals couldn’t be more feckin’ perfect, from the village “eejit” (Barry Keoghan) to Pádraic’s bookishly brilliant sister (Kerry Condon) to Mrs. McCormick (Sheila Flitton), the Inisherin version of a Macbeth witch. In a way, the irresistible dialogue is the main character. See it and you’ll speak Irish for a week. —T.A.

Watch it: The Banshees of Inisherin, in theaters

Don’t miss this: The 10 Best Movies Set in Ireland

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Aftersun, R

The fall season’s emotional surprise is this Cannes film fest prizewinner. Young Scotswoman Sophie (Celia Rowson-Hall) reflects on a resort holiday two decades earlier to celebrate her 11th birthday with her dad, Calum (a muscular and moving Paul Mescal). The drama hinges on young Sophie (Frankie Corio), a sunny youngster who shares a deep, often wordless bond with her father. As Sophie splashes around, plants a first kiss and plays video games, cracks begin to show in Calum’s cheerful, caring façade. He’s holding on to life by their love’s thread, trying to repress his demons. But it’s a fool’s errand. I wept buckets, because writer-director Charlotte Wells so honestly realizes Sophie and Calum, and the potency and poetry of their father-daughter connection. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Aftersun, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Tár, R

Masterful Cate Blanchett, 53, plucks our heartstrings as the fictional Leonard Bernstein protégé Lydia Tár, the ruthless, passionate superstar conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic. At the pinnacle of an international career, she meets her Waterloo in the cancel culture she disdains, thanks to her woman problem. She grooms talented young musicians, like her long-suffering assistant (Portrait of a Lady on Fire’s Noémie Merlant), and callously abuses them emotionally and/or sexually. For her, it’s all about the music, not the morals. It’s an epic character study that got a six-minute standing ovation at its Cannes premiere, though it lacks a final movement that delivers a crescendo of feeling. Maestro or monster? Tár’s both. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Tár, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ The Woman King, PG-13

Muscular and well oiled, Oscar winner Viola Davis, 57, vanquishes and vanquishes again as the emotionally and physically scarred General Nanisca, who cuts through rival tribes and European slavers in a war epic from Gina Prince-Bythewood, 53. Set in the 19th-century West African kingdom of Dahomey, this violent, female-driven history centers on the triumph of Nanisca’s women-only army, loyal to King Ghezo (an underused John Boyega). It’s also the tale of new recruit Nawi (The Underground Railroad’s outstanding Thuso Mbedu) and her journey under Nanisca’s critical eye from abused daughter to machete-wielding warrior. While the movie’s treatment is surprisingly conventional, the tale of women empowered to own their own bodies couldn’t be timelier. —T.M.A.

Watch it: The Woman King, in theaters

Don’t miss this: Viola Davis’ 10 Fiercest Roles (So Far!)

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