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What to Watch on TV and at the Movies This Week

See ‘Conan O’Brien Must Go,’ ‘Lost Angel,’ ‘Absence of Eden,’ ‘Hard Miles,’ ‘The Jinx, Part Two’ and more

spinner image Conan O’Brien kickboxing in the Max series Conan O’Brien Must Go
Conan O’Brien stars in "Conan O’Brien Must Go."
Courtesy Max

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

Don’t miss this: 50 Things That Changed the World: Events, Movies, Shows, Books and Tunes That Turn 50 in 2024, on AARP Members Only Access

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On TV this week …

Conan O’Brien Must Go (Max)

In the funniest travel show on TV, the ex-late-night host visits fans and others in Thailand, Argentina, Ireland and Norway – where he visits a Viking village, a rap group, a knitting club and a sex therapist.  

Watch it: Conan O’Brien Must Go, April 18 on Max

The Jinx – Part Two (Max)

The 2015 documentary The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst was an astounding account of an eccentric zillionaire accused of murdering his wife, his oldest friend and a neighbor after he went on the run from authorities and disguised himself as a hearing-impaired, mute elderly woman. In the new six-episode follow-up from the same filmmaker, we delve deeper into the murders and meet the D.A.s and defense attorneys, plus experts and witnesses who’ve not come forward before.

Watch it: The Jinx – Part Two, April 21, 10 p.m. ET on Max

​​Your Netflix Watch of the Week is here!

The Upshaws, Season 5

It’s rare for any Netflix original to last for five seasons — so count your blessings that this sitcom about an Indiana mechanic (Mike Epps, 53) and his family is back, and that a sixth season has already been greenlit. While Epps and Kim Fields, 54, have great rapport as a married couple who could be straight out of any classic network sitcom, the show gets a sardonic boost from Wanda Sykes, 60, as Fields’ wisecracking sister.

Watch it: The Upshaws 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 April

Your Prime Video Watch of the Week is here!

Dinner With the Parents, Season 1

Henry Hall (son of Julia Louis-Dreyfus, 63) stars in this Freevee comedy series based on a British hit about a close-knit family with grownup children who gather every Friday for a communal meal — which regularly devolves into chaos, thanks to pranks, misunderstandings and surprise visitors (including nosy neighbors and old childhood crushes). The secret weapon might be Carol Kane, 71, as the daffy, heavily accented grandma.

Watch it: Dinner With the Parents on Prime Video Freevee

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

And don’t miss this: Kyle MacLachlan Reveals How Prime Video’s ‘Fallout’ Blends Drama With Dark Humor, on AARP Members Only Access

​​What’s new at the movies …

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ The Absence of Eden, R

The wonderful Zoe Saldaña plays Esmee, a Mexican migrant desperately trying to escape the tentacles of human and drug trafficking on both sides of the border. In one critical scene, she’s the blistering, articulate voice of the dispossessed, yelling through a glass door at the crooked front-desk clerk she’s locked out of his own motel. Meanwhile, ICE agent Shipp (the arresting Garrett Hedlund) is torn between his humanity and his duty: chasing and arresting illegal immigrants. “They’re not our problem,” says his ICE partner (Chris Coy). But seeing young, abused girls he rescued being shipped back south to a country that can’t protect them, he’s disillusioned and profoundly moved. The clunky script explains the film’s low rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes (27 percent), but the acting perhaps explains why audiences liked it about three times as much (75 percent). —Thelma M. Adams (T.M.A.)

Watch it: The Absence of Eden, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Blood for Dust, R

This modest, character-driven modern noir centers on Cliff (a perfectly cast Scoot McNairy), a churchgoing traveling salesman, husband and father of a cancer-stricken child. To preserve his family, the schlub drives into the dingiest Midwestern wastelands where sales are few and temptation arrives in the form of former colleague Ricky (a skanky, American-accented Kit Harington, pushing against his Game of Thrones royal type). Desperate Cliff throws his family’s future in with the wily Ricky, who thinks Cliff’s an ideal drug-and-cash mule. Enter Josh Lucas, 52, as a drug boss enjoying the opportunity to wet his hands with blood. The climax is like Fargo without the insane laughs. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Blood for Dust, April 19 in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Hard Miles, PG-13

Handsome Matthew Modine, 65, is an underrated star. Since his pivotal role in 1987’s Full Metal Jacket, the son of a California drive-in theater manager has consistently delivered performances with integrity, sly humor and self-awareness. As prison social worker Greg Townsend, convinced of the healing power of vigorous work and teamwork, he leads a motley group of teen convicts on a 1,000-mile cycling trip to the Grand Canyon. Based on the real story of Townsend and the Ridge View Academy team he launched, the tautly scripted sports rescue drama also features a genial Sean Astin, 53, as a bike vendor and part-time sponsor. Despite some sappy moments and predictable uphill-mountain struggles, Hard Miles is an inspiring movie that pushes away the soot and trauma of our overtaxed corrections system to find the inherent good in its young denizens, one pedal, one hard mile, at a time. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Hard Miles, April 19 in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ We Grown Now, PG

Soulmates can’t be faked. Best friends since birth, 12-year-old Malik and Eric (irresistibly, tenderly played by Blake Cameron James and Gian Knight Ramirez), inhabit Chicago’s notorious Cabrini Green housing projects in the ’90s. From making jumpy houses out of abandoned mattresses to ditching school for the Art Institute, their powerful connection is the film’s primary focus. Complications arise when police shoot a 7-year-old in the neighborhood, spreading terror among the residents. Should Malik’s single mother (an affecting Jurnee Smollett) move to Peoria to protect her kids and their grandmother (S. Epatha Merkerson, 71, the movie’s grounding rod)? And yet, that flight from Cabrini Green will all but sever a treasured friendship that cannot be replicated, which gives the movie its universal sense of melancholy. This earnest, observant and empathetic coming-of-age adventure presents a story of African American boyhood as iconic as Stand by Me—T.M.A.

Watch it: We Grown Now, April 19 in theaters

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⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Lost Angel: The Genius of Judee Sill, Unrated

An abused child, armed robber, ex-prostitute, ex-jailbird and addict, Judee Sill was the first artist signed by mogul David Geffen in 1971. She went from living in her Cadillac to the cover of Rolling Stone, was compared to Laura Nyro and wrote minor hits (the Turtles’ “Lady-O” and her own “Jesus Was a Cross Maker,” possibly inspired by her affair with songwriter J.D. Souther, 78). Her God-haunted music, tormented life, improbable rise and tragic death are fascinatingly explained by Geffen, her producer Graham Nash, 82, Souther, Linda Ronstadt (who stole Souther back from her), 77, Jackson Browne, 75, David Crosby, more luminaries and critics plus Sill herself, whose voice still resonates. A must-see for fans of the ’70s singer-songwriter scene. —Tim Appelo (T.A.)

Watch it: Lost Angel: The Genius of Judee Sill, in theaters and on demand

Also catch up with …

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Civil War, R

Set in the near future, Civil War follows four disparate war correspondents (Wagner Moura, Cailee Spaeny and Stephen McKinley Henderson, 74, galvanized by the pitch-perfect Kirsten Dunst). They leave Manhattan via press van, picking across the ravaged countryside to the endangered White House. Their objective: the ultimate scoop, a photo and quote from the president (Nick Offerman, 53) while he’s still occupying the Oval Office. On the road, the quartet makes a series of horror pit stops, climaxing when they catch Jesse Plemons (Dunst’s real-life husband and Fargo costar) red-handed, ditching corpses – and seeking more. In a one-scene role, the actor shatters as a violent, xenophobic, red state militia man. The film, never as daring or nuanced as it needs to be, rests uneasily between Oliver Stone’s provocative war correspondent movie Salvador and Gerard Butler’s ballistic blockbuster Olympus Has Fallen. It’s part political critique, part isn’t-it-cool-when-things-explode — a dystopia at war with itself. —T.M.A.

Watch it: Civil War, in theaters​​

Franklin (Apple TV+)

The writers of Boardwalk Empire and the hit Paul Giamatti miniseries John Adams bring you Michael Douglas, 79, as founding father Benjamin Franklin in an adaptation of Stacy Schiff’s dazzling 2005 book, A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France and the Birth of America. The eight-part miniseries revisits when America was losing the Revolutionary War — until its greatest scientist-statesman hit France like a lightning bolt, charming them into helping us change the course of history.

Watch it: Franklin on Apple TV+

Don’t miss this: Michael Douglas on Playing Franklin: “I Wanted to See How I’d Look in Tights” on AARP Members Only Access

The Sympathizer (Max)

Hoa Xuande, Sandra Oh, 52, and Robert Downey Jr., 59 (in multiple roles), star in an adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel about a half-Vietnamese, half-French communist agent who joins the South Vietnamese Army during the Vietnam War, then moves to California.

Watch it: The Sympathizer on Max

Don’t miss this: Robert Downey Jr.’s 10 Greatest Roles (Ranked)

And don’t miss this: The 25 Best True Crime Stories of All Time (Shows, Books, Podcasts), on AARP Members Only Access

3 Body Problem (Netflix)

In Netflix’s No. 1 hit show, the makers of Game of Thrones and True Blood bring you a sci-fi show about an astrophysicist (Rosalind Chao, 66) whose hunt for aliens in the 1960s causes big trouble for humanity years later.

Watch it: 3 Body Problem on Netflix

Don’t miss this: What You Need to Know Before Watching ‘3 Body Problem’

Fallout, Season 1 (Prime Video)

After apocalyptic bombs devastate the world, it’s overrun with mutant creatures and pragmatic bounty hunters such as The Ghoul (Justified’s Walton Goggins, 52). Kyle MacLachlan, 65 (Twin Peaks), plays Hank, the overseer of a vault where folks hide from calamity.

​​Watch it: Fallout on Prime Video

Ripley (Netflix)

Remember Matt Damon in the 1999 hit film The Talented Mr. Ripley, based on Patricia Highsmith’s novel about Tom Ripley, a talented impostor and killer? Now see Andrew Scott, 47, who shot to fame as the “hot priest” on TV’s Fleabag, as slippery Ripley in a new series adaptation by Steven Zaillian, 71, writer of Schindler’s List.

Watch it: Ripley on Netflix

Don’t miss this: The Best ‘Talented Mr. Ripley’ Adaptations, Ranked

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Road House, R (Prime Video)

​The 1989 Patrick Swayze action film gets a 21st-century update, with Jake Gyllenhaal playing a world-weary former UFC fighter who takes a job as a bouncer at a Florida Keys dive bar that seems to attract a very aggro clientele. Brace yourself for bare-knuckle brawling. Many doubted the wisdom of rebooting this much-razzed cult classic — but it broke a record with 50 million viewers, the biggest debut of any Amazon/MGM Studios original in history.

Watch it: Road House on Prime Video

STEVE! (martin) a documentary in 2 pieces (Apple TV+)

Comic turned A-list actor Steve Martin, 78, gets the documentary treatment from A-list director Morgan Neville (Won’t You Be My Neighbor?).

Watch it: STEVE! (martin) a documentary in 2 pieces on Apple TV+

Don’t miss this: 9 Wild and Crazy Things You Didn’t Know About Steve Martin

Palm Royale (Apple TV+)

Kristen Wiig, 50, plays a divorcée trying to break into 1969 Palm Beach high society in a highly promising miniseries with the most illustrious comedy cast of the year: Carol Burnett, 90, Laura Dern, 57, Allison Janney, 64, Julia Duffy, 72, Josh Lucas, 52, and Ricky Martin, 52.

Watch it: Palm Royale on Apple TV+

Don’t miss this: 10 Quick Questions for Carol Burnett on AARP Members Only Access

Grey’s Anatomy (ABC)

In the 20th season of the steamy hospital drama, we’ll see the aftermath of multiple cliff-hangers featuring two crucial smooches and two near-death experiences, by a patient (Sam Page) and his surgeon (Kim Raver, 54). The titular Dr. Grey (Ellen Pompeo, 54), won’t be a regular anymore, but she’ll do voice-overs and maybe even appear on screen. “It’s not a complete goodbye,” Pompeo says.

Watch it: Grey’s Anatomy, Thursdays, 9 p.m. ET on ABC

Don't miss this: Broadcast TV Preview 2024: The 20 Best Free Shows Headed Your Way

And don't miss this: 9 Quick Questions for Chandra Wilson of ‘Grey's Anatomy’ on AARP Members Only Access

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Arthur the King, PG-13

Spoiler alert: The dog lives! If you’re like me, the prospect of a movie costarring a heroic animal can invoke PTSD from childhood classics like Old Yeller, Bambi or Marley & Me. You still might still need some Kleenex for Arthur the King, but they’ll be happy tears. Scrappy Arthur, the wounded street dog that endurance athlete Michael Light (Mark Wahlberg, 52) meets on the streets of the Dominican Republic and feeds a meatball, winds up tailing Light’s team of adventure racers through a brutal 10-day, 435-mile trek, kayak and climb through the jungle. Arthur becomes part of the squad in its last-ditch bid to win the Adventure Racing World Championship. The setup can be formulaic and heartwarming with a capital H at times. But Wahlberg is so unaffected and authentic as the obsessive racer who wants to win at any cost – until he meets Arthur – that many of his scenes with the dog ring remarkably true. (The film is based on the true story of Swedish adventure racer Mikael Lindnord, who met the real-life Arthur in an Ecuador race and brought him back to Sweden to live with his family.) A modest film that says a lot about what winning really means. —Dana Kennedy (D.K.)

Watch it: Arthur the King, in theaters

⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ Dune: Part Two, PG-13

Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan compares this incredibly epic film of Frank Herbert’s SF classic to The Empire Strikes Back, which outdid the original Star Wars. He’s got a point. It’s an eye-popping, sonically stunning, highly original story with massively more action, character and plot than the 2021 Dune: Part One. Timothée Chalamet is more vibrant as Paul, the hero battling the Nazi-esque Harkonnens, and the grownups are great: Javier Bardem, 54, and Josh Brolin, 56, as his friends and mentors, Christopher Walken, 80, as the evil Emperor and Stellan Skarsgård, 72, as the Jabba the Hutt-like Baron Harkonnen. The amazingly confusing plot mostly holds your interest, but it’s the images that stick with you: Paul riding the giant sand worm, warriors erupting from the ground like skeletons in Jason and the Argonauts, rallies straight out of Triumph of the Will, fabulous battles. It’s like a trip to other planets. —T.A.

Watch it: Dune: Part Two, in theaters

Don’t miss this: Everything You Need to Know Before You Watch Dune: Part 2

⭐⭐⭐☆☆ Bob Marley: One Love, PG-13

Kingsley Ben-Adir, who played Malcolm X in the Oscar-nominated 2020 One Night in Miami ..., delivers a smartly focused performance as reggae legend Bob Marley. He nails the late star’s Jamaican patois (you sometimes wish the film had subtitles), but what’s missing is the Soul Rebel who brought stadiums of fans to their feet. You can feel director Reinaldo Marcus Green straining against the family-approved biopic format, in which less attractive episodes such as infidelities and arrests get only a glancing mention. When the focus stays on Marley’s singular talent — for example, a lingering scene in which he and the band piece together the classic tune “Exodus” — One Love succeeds in getting things together so you can feel all right. —Thom Geier (T.G.)

Watch it: Bob Marley: One Love, in theaters

Don't miss this: Ziggy Marley reveals his father’s final words to him on AARP Members Only Access

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ The Taste of Things, PG-13

Not since Babette’s Feast has there been a culinary movie so delicious. In this sensual French period entry for the Oscar, which was overshadowed by the more serious contemporary best picture nominee Anatomy of a Fall, Juliette Binoche, 59, leads the way around a large, rustic kitchen in 1889 France. The actress is graceful, passionate and mysterious as Eugenie, a chef whose culinary talent and skills border on the mystical. Employed for two decades by the famed gourmet Dodin Bouffant (Binoche’s ex-partner Benoît Magimel, 49), the magnificent first act finds her cooking with mouthwatering detail, her hands never still or unsure, her concentration absolute. From this emerge the delicate flavors of her collaboration and consensual no-strings sexual relationship with Bouffant, the nurturing of an apprentice and an appreciation for food preparation as its own genius. The Taste of Things is a yummy version of a life well lived, where dinner isn’t a meal between dusk and dark, but a daily celebration of life for as long as it lasts. —T.M.A.

Watch it: The Taste of Things, in theaters and on demand

​Don’t miss this: 8 Quick Questions for Juliette Binoche on AARP Members Only Access​​

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