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What to Watch on TV and at the Movies This Week

Our favorite film of the summer is here, and it stars a 94-year-old as an action hero!

spinner image Richard Roundtree and June Squibb riding in a scooter in the film Thelma
(Left to right) Richard Roundtree and June Squibb star in "Thelma."

What’s on this week? Whether it’s what’s on cable, streaming on Prime Video or Netflix, or opening at your local movie theater, we’ve got your must-watch list. Start with TV and scroll down for movies. It’s all right here.

On TV this week …

Trigger Warning (Netflix)

Buckle up and get ready for Jessica Alba, action hero. In this high-octane thriller, the actor plays a Special Forces commando who returns to her hometown and becomes suspicious about the real cause of her father’s recent death. Could the police be involved? A local gang? And what about shady senator Anthony Michael Hall, 58? One thing’s for sure, Alba’s hand-to-hand fight scenes make her look like the second coming of Jason Bourne.

Watch it: Trigger Warning, June 21 on Netflix

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Stevie Van Zandt: Disciple (HBO, Max)

You don’t get more New Jersey than Steven Van Zandt, 73. After famously sharing the stage with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band for 50 years and the screen with Tony Soprano, this outsize rocker, actor, producer, activist and radio show host gets the spotlight all to himself — and deservedly so — in this HBO Original documentary, costarring the state of New Jersey, from real-life Asbury Park to The Sopranos’ Bada Bing! club.

Watch it: Stevie Van Zandt: Disciple, June 22 at 8 p.m. ET on HBOMax

Don’t miss this: The 10 Best Things Coming to Max in June

Orphan Black: Echoes (AMC, AMC+, BBC America)

Consider yourself one of the cool kids if you knew about (and watched) the original Canadian Black Mirror-esque series that ran from 2013 to 2017 to critical acclaim, including a Primetime Emmy for its star, Tatiana Maslany, as con woman Sarah Manning, who discovers she is in fact part of a secret human cloning operation. This sequel picks up the storyline 37 years in the future and stars Keeley Hawes (The Durrells) as Sarah’s daughter, Kira, who attempts to help Lucy (Krysten Ritter, Breaking Bad), a young woman who has undergone a medical procedure and has no idea who she is. With its futuristic moral dilemma-scape and juicy thriller fun, this is the perfect new watch for summer Sunday nights.

Watch it: Orphan Black: Echoes, June 23 on AMC, AMC+, BBC America

I Am: Celine Dion (Prime Video)

What has life been like for Celine Dion, 56, in the two years since the five-time Grammy winner was diagnosed with a rare neurological condition called stiff person syndrome that forced her to cancel a planned world concert tour? This new documentary from Oscar-nominated director Irene Taylor, 54, promises an inside look at the singer’s health battle as well as her resilience.

Watch it: I Am: Celine Dion, June 25 on Prime Video

Diane von Furstenberg: Woman in Charge (Hulu)

It’s hard to find a working woman who does not know a DvF dress when she sees one, particularly the designer’s iconic wrap dress, which defined workplace fashion aspirations for American women. This new Disney+ documentary, co-directed by two-time Academy Award–winning filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy (Saving Face) and Trish Dalton (Student Athlete), brings von Furstenberg, 77, into appropriately bright focus. Not only is she a pioneer but she remains a fierce force in both the fashion and philanthropic communities (she and husband Barry Diller, 82, led the groundbreaking High Line project on Manhattan’s West Side).

Watch it: Diane von Furstenberg: Woman in Charge, June 25 on Hulu

Don’t miss this: The 13 Best Things Coming to Hulu in June

Land of Women (Apple TV+)

A little bit fish-out-of-water comedy, a little bit multigenerational heart-warmer, a little bit thriller and a little bit rom-com, this Apple TV+ original series is based on the 2014 best-selling novel by Spanish author, television presenter and actor Sandra Barneda. Eva Longoria (an executive producer for the series) stars as a New York socialite who, when faced with the criminal misdeeds of her suddenly disappeared husband, flees to Spain with her daughter (Victoria Bazúa) and mother (famed Spanish actor Carmen Maura, 78) in tow. All of the above ensues.

Watch it: Land of Women, June 26 on Apple TV+

Don’t miss AARP’s new Hollywood for Grownups column on AARP Members Edition: The Magic Behind George Clooney and Brad Pitt’s On-Screen Chemistry

Your Netflix Watch of the Week is here!

America’s Sweethearts: Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders

It’s surprising this one took so long. Netflix’s latest original sports doc follows the 2023–2024 season of the Dallas Cowboys’ famous, star-spangled cheerleading squad. Over seven episodes, the cameras take us behind the scenes to show us how, for these women, the job is about a lot more than just smiling and waving a pair of pom-poms. A ton of hard work, athleticism and discipline goes into their performances, scrutinized by 90,000 fans (plus millions watching on TV). That’s pressure.

Watch it: ​America’s Sweethearts: Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders on Netflix

Don’t miss this: The 12 Best Movies on Netflix Right Now

And don’t miss this: The 12 Best Things Coming to Netflix in June

Your Prime Video Watch of the Week is here!

The Boys (Season 4)

The stakes are climbing for the protagonists of The Boys, which pits a band of outlaw superheroes against a polished crew of corporate-backed superheroes with a fascist agenda. Now that closeted superhero Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit) has set her sights on the White House, backed by pretty-boy baddie Homelander (Anthony Starr), it’s up to the ailing Billy Butcher (Karl Urban, 51) to rally the Boys once again to save the world. Expect plenty of R-rated mayhem and left-field twists, like villainous flying sheep.

Watch it: The Boys on Prime Video

Don’t miss this: The 10 Best Things Coming to Prime Video in June

​​What’s new at the movies …

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ The Bikeriders, R

Tom Hardy, Jodie Comer and Austin Butler could be cast in anything and sizzle. But, dressed in black leather, the trio delivers the most explosive, immersive motorcycle movie in years. Even while the engines roar, the complex characters evolve and explode, never easing off the gas. This fictional drama about the birth of the Vandals, inspired by a 1968 photo essay book about a Midwestern gang, foregrounds family man Johnny (Hardy) as the leader of the pack, and Benny (Butler) as the wild one. Comer’s Kathy narrates as a housewife who falls hard for Benny and surrenders the straight and narrow. All three confront challenges when what began in the ’60s as a beer-drinking local club faces a cultural sea change. As the bikers expand nationally, hard drugs and dealing become part of the action, and knives are exchanged for guns. Authentic, exciting and swift, The Bikeriders digs deep into a freedom-seeking American subculture, a cool companion piece to Easy Rider (which celebrates its 55th anniversary this year).

Watch it: The Bikeriders, June 21 in theaters

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⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Thelma, PG-13

Seeking a 94-year-old superhero? Look no further than Los Angeleno Thelma Post (Oscar nominee June Squibb, 94). The widow may be one fall away from assisted living and boggled by all things computer, but when phone scammers weasel her out of $10,000, Thelma is not going to take it sitting down quietly doing needlepoint. Aided by her devoted but anxious grandson (a relatable Fred Hechinger), a determined Thelma pinches an electric scooter from an old friend (the dashing Richard Roundtree in his final role) and follows the clues to reclaim her bucks — and her dignity. The Sundance hit and audience award winner at the Provincetown Film Festival delivers delightful character-driven action and laughs, led by an irresistible Squibb. With Thelma, the lively actor on the verge of another Oscar nomination, has been liberated to be a leading lady for once in a 40-year career. The thieves may have grabbed this grandma’s stash, but Thelma steals the audience’s hearts. —Thelma M. Adams (T.M.A.)

Watch it: Thelma, June 21 in theaters

Don’t miss this: June Squibb lands her first lead movie role in Thelma, in AARP Members Only Access

Also catch up with …

Brats (Hulu)

You know you’re a card-carrying AARP member when you can identify members of the Rat Pack and the Brat Pack, the mid-1980s inheritors of the modified mantle. But did they want it? Brat Packer Andrew McCarthy, 61, who pivoted from acting to travel writing, grabs the camera and checks in with his fellow Brats to review the evidence. The result is a nostalgia-fueled visit with the kids who brought you St. Elmo’s Fire and The Breakfast Club, among other generational touchstones: Demi Moore, 61, Rob Lowe, 60, Emilio Estevez, 62, Molly Ringwald, 56, Ally Sheedy, 61, Timothy Hutton, 63, Lea Thompson, 63 (who claims to be Brat Pack adjacent), and Jon Cryer, 59, who says he wasn’t a Brat Packer at all. Don’t you forget about them!

Watch it: Brats on Hulu

Don’t miss this: Andrew McCarthy reflects on the Brat Pack’s legacy in AARP Members Only Access

House of the Dragon, Season 2 (HBO, Max)

Raise your banners and saddle up the dragons: A new, eight-episode season of HBO’s Game of Thrones 2022 prequel is here! It’s fantasy game-on for the bleach-blond Targaryens (featuring Emma D’Arcy as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen and The Crown’s Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen) who are back at it in their battle for the throne. Summer just got a whole lot hotter.

Watch it: House of the Dragon on HBO, Max

Don’t miss this:  Here’s Everything You Need to Know About the ‘Game of Thrones’ Prequel ‘House of the Dragon’

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Inside Out 2, PG

In Disney/Pixar’s 2015 animated hit Inside Out, we met a hockey-loving preteen girl named Riley — as well as the inner voices in her head. As Joy, Amy Poehler, 52, was the ever-optimistic leader, seeking to manage Anger, Sadness, Fear and Disgust like the boss in a workplace sitcom. Now that Riley is a braces-wearing 13-year-old, puberty brings a new set of anthropomorphized emotions — from high-octane Anxiety (Maya Hawke) to wide-eyed Envy (Emmy winner Ayo Edibiri) to hoodie-wearing Embarrassment (Paul Walter Hauser) to too-cool-for-school Ennui (Adèle Exarchopoulos) to Nostalgia (June Squibb, 94) — who threaten to make our sweet heroine unrecognizable. At least until all those competing impulses within her learn to coexist. That’s a message that resonates for grownups as well as kids — and it helps that this sequel finds such wittily physical ways to depict abstract ideas. Sarcasm becomes a literal chasm, for instance, that diverts Joy and her crew as they navigate Riley’s watery stream of consciousness. This toon may get stuck in your head — in a good way. A great one to treat the grandkids to. —Thom Geier (T.G.)

Watch it: Inside Out 2, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Firebrand, R

Tudor nerd that I am, I still knew little about Katherine Parr (Alicia Vikander), the surviving sixth wife of King Henry VIII (Jude Law, 51). Based on the 2013 novel Queen’s Gambit, the fascinating Firebrand isn’t exactly historical gospel but presented in a based-on-a-true-story way. Parr, a scholar, is a benign stepmother to Henry’s three children (Junia Rees is magnetic as the future Elizabeth I) but also committed to the English Reformation, a potential act of treason. With sumptuous costumes and production design, this is a view of the Tudor lion in winter — fat, irascible, a slave to his appetites and in howling pain from leg ulcers that failed to heal — and the intelligent, intellectually passionate partner who tried to influence him while keeping her head. Law, one moment charming, the next threatening, and the radiant Vikander make Firebrand a fascinating, if choppy, feminist chapter in the voluminous Tudor film archives.  —T.M.A.

Watch it: Firebrand, in theaters

Outstanding: A Comedy Revolution (Netflix)

The history of LGBTQ+ stand-up comedy and the many struggles of queer comics once afraid to come out of the closet and take the stage is the focus of this star-studded documentary featuring interviews with grownup comics Lily Tomlin, 84, Rosie O’Donnell, 62, Wanda Sykes, 60, Sandra Bernhard, 69, Eddie Izzard, 62, Tig Notaro, 53, and Margaret Cho, 55.

Watch it: Outstanding: A Comedy Revolution on Netflix

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Bad Boys: Ride or Die, R 

​Bad boys! Well, actually, immature middle-aged men. Detectives Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence, 59) and Mike Lowrey (Will Smith, 55) rev up the old Porsche and take their Miami Vice-meets-The-Fugitive vehicle out for a very bumpy ride. There are super-tan villains, an illegitimate son, cops heroic and dirty, and one jumbo albino alligator in a complicated Florida-set plot about political corruption. Implicated in past bad acts, Burnett and Lowrey generate some buddy bromance while trying to clear their names. Notorious Oscar-slapper Smith gets slapped at least three times as Lowrey in a sloppy stew of action sequences punctuated by chuckles. But in a summer movie schedule short on combustive comic action, there’s a place for Bad Boys: Ride or Die. And if this one pushes the franchise over the billion-dollar mark, Hollywood might show a smack of forgiveness for Smith. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Bad Boys: Ride or Die, in theaters

The Acolyte (Disney+)

Squid Game’s Lee Jung-jae, 51, learned English to play Jedi master Sol, investigating crime in this massively trending Star Wars spin-off, with Carrie-Anne Moss, 56, as martial arts Jedi master Indara — who’s so much like the character she played in The Matrix that she calls Indara “Trinity with a lightsaber.”

Watch it: The Acolyte on Disney+

Hit Man (Netflix)

Glen Powell (Top Gun: Maverick) wrote and stars in the latest from Richard Linklater, 63, a film loosely inspired by Gary Johnson, a nerdy professor who actually moonlighted as a fake hit man to help Houston police nab over 60 would-be killers. When a woman asked him to kill her abusive boyfriend, he got her into a shelter instead. Powell’s Gary falls in love with such a woman (Adria Arjona), and trouble ensues. It’s a screwball comedy, a rom-com, a thriller and Linklater’s biggest critical hit in almost a decade. Some call it his most entertaining film ever.

Watch it: Hit Man on Netflix

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Presumed Innocent (Apple TV+)

If you liked Big Little Lies, try the latest twisty mystery miniseries from producer David E. Kelley, 68, about prosecutor Rusty Sabich (Jake Gyllenhaal), whose office is upended when one of its own is accused of a lurid murder. “The new Presumed Innocent will be just that — new,” Scott Turow, 75, author of the 1986 bestseller that spawned a 1990 Harrison Ford film and now this show, tells AARP. “There are many thoughtful changes. DNA was not commonly used in the courtroom when I wrote the novel. These days, Rusty would have been slabbed by DNA testing. Kelley came up with a new approach that borders on genius — which is revealed in the first episode.”

Watch it: Presumed Innocent on Apple TV+

The Great Lillian Hall (Max)

Jessica Lange, 75, guns for an Emmy as a great stage actress stricken with dementia on the eve of her opening in The Cherry Orchard, comforted by her longtime assistant (Kathy Bates, 75) and a kind neighbor (Pierce Brosnan, 71).

Watch it: The Great Lillian Hall on Max

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Ezra, PG-13

Heartbreaking and hilarious, Ezra is a contemporary audience-pleaser that inspires laughter and tears, sometimes simultaneously. Bobby Cannavale, 54, nails his lead role as Max, a self-sabotaging Brooklyn comic trying for a comeback. He filters the demands of his family — his autistic son, Ezra (played with a light touch by believable newcomer William A. Fitzgerald); his ex-wife, Jenna (real-life mate Rose Byrne), from whom he is semi-amicably divorced; and his loose-cannon-but-loving father, Stan (an engaging Robert De Niro, 80) — through his stand-up routines. More down-to-earth than the similar Silver Linings Playbook, the movie, directed by and costarring Tony Goldwyn, 64, searches for the Holy Grail of what family behavior is “normal.” Answers don’t come easily or in tidy packages, as Max discovers that in asserting his son’s right to an independent life, he also makes peace with his father, becomes the ex-husband Jenna needs and rediscovers his ability to laugh at himself. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Ezra, in theaters

Don’t miss this: Bobby Cannavale at 54: What I Know Now, on AARP Members Only Access

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, PG-13

The latest flick in the 10-film hominoid franchise is in most ways a Dune-sized winner, packed with action that feels less artificial than most blockbusters, absorbing characters, a story that makes sense if you haven’t seen the other films, and ape faces more exquisitely expressive than many botoxed A-list actresses can manage. It’s a superb SF epic that whisks you to a future when most humans have lost the power of speech and apes are ruled by the terrifying bonobo tyrant Proximus Caesar (Kevin Durand), who kidnaps our clever ape hero Noa (Owen Teague), kills his wise, witty old orangutan mentor Raka (Peter Macon), and tries to force smarter-than-the-average human Mae (Freya Allan) to open a vault full of ancient human war technology. William H. Macy, 74, is aces as a craven human who stays alive by reading Vonnegut and Roman history books to Proximus. The movie takes its own sweet time, and would be better minus half an hour. But even the longueurs are eye-poppingly watchable and serve the purpose of building a world that envelops us. —Tim Appelo (T.A.)

Watch it: Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, in theaters

Mother of the Bride (Netflix)

This one has rom-com crowd-pleaser written all over it. Brooke Shields, 58, grapples with separation anxiety as her daughter (Miranda Cosgrove) is about to walk down the aisle at a destination beach wedding in Thailand. She snaps out of her funk the second she’s introduced (or reintroduced) to the groom’s dad, who just happens to be the old college boyfriend who broke her heart (Benjamin Bratt, 60). The fact that this was directed by Mark Waters (Freaky Friday, Mean Girls) bodes well.

Watch it: Mother of the Bride on Netflix

Don’t miss this: Brooke Shields on Life at 58: ‘There Are So Many Moving Pieces’

Or this: 50 Things That Changed the World: Events, Movies, Shows, Books and Tunes That Turn 50 in 2024, on AARP Members Only Access

In the Kitchen With Harry Hamlin (AMC+)

Hamlin, 72, the L.A. Law star known as “the king of Bolognese,” invites Ted Danson, 76, Bobby Moynihan, Mary Steenburgen, 71, Ed Begley Jr., 74, and you to his home kitchen to cook up something wonderful where dinner party meets cooking show and documentary.

Watch it: In the Kitchen With Harry Hamlin on AMC+

Don’t miss this: Harry Hamlin: ‘I’m Just Getting Started ... I Don’t Think About Aging,’ on AARP Members Only Access

Hacks (Max)

The world needs more Deborah Vance, the Joan Rivers-esque, unsinkable comedian wisecracking her way through the slings and arrows of aging while headlining in Vegas. And the world definitely needs more Jean Smart, 72, the Emmy winner who inhabits Vance with elan and venom in equal measure. In the third season, the achingly millennial comedy writer Ava Daniels (Laraine Newman’s daughter, Hannah Einbinder) reunites with her unlikely mentor.

Watch it: Hacks on Max

Don’t miss this: Jean Smart Talks Family, Grief and Aging: ‘Every Day Is Precious Now,’ on AARP Members Only Access

The Idea of You (Prime Video)

In a steamy flip on the traditional May-December romance, a 40-something single mom (Anne Hathaway) embarks on an unlikely fling with the 24-year-old lead singer (Nicholas Galitzine) of her teenage daughter’s fave boy band. The film, based on Robinne Lee’s bestseller, earned raves at its premiere at the SXSW Film Festival.

Watch it: The Idea of You on Prime Video

Don’t miss this: 12 Classic Older Woman–Younger Man Movies to Watch After ‘The Idea of You’

Thank You, Goodnight: The Bon Jovi Story (Hulu)

Gather round, Jovi fans. This four-part docuseries takes us behind the spandex for an intimate history of the Jersey hair rock legends who gave us “You Give Love a Bad Name” and “Livin’ on a Prayer,” including candid interviews with the band members. Fellow Jerseyite Bruce Springsteen, 74, weighs in: “Jon’s choruses demand to be sung by 20,000 people in an arena.” As testimonials go, that isn’t too shabby.

Watch it: Thank You, Goodnight: The Bon Jovi Story on Hulu

Don’t miss this: Jon Bon Jovi, 62, on New Documentary: ‘It’s Each of Our Individual Truths’​​​​

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