New Video on Demand, Rental Streaming, and Digital
"Ghost in the Shell"
The future is here -- or it will be on Friday. Scarlett Johansson's cyber-enhanced Major and her eye-popping sci-fi movie are ready for Digital HD viewing on July 7. "Ghost in the Shell" -- which co-stars Takeshi Kitano, Michael Carmen Pitt, Pilou Asbæk, Chin Han, and Juliette Binoche -- later arrives on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD, and On Demand July 25. The home release will come with more than 50 minutes of behind-the-scenes special features on the stunts, special effects, fight sequences, robotics, and original anime.
"The Boss Baby"
Oh, baby. Alec Baldwin voices the suit-wearing baby brother of 7-year-old Tim (Miles Bakshi) in this animated family comedy arriving on Digital HD July 4, then Blu-ray and DVD on July 25. Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, Miles Bakshi, and Tobey Maguire also lend their voices to the movie, which comes with more than 30 minutes of extras on every format, including a new Mini Adventure.
"The Salesman" (Amazon)
This Iranian drama just won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film -- Asghar Farhadi's second Academy Award in that category after the brilliant "A Separation" -- follows a wife who struggles with post-traumatic stress after being attacked, while her husband attempts to find the identity of her attacker. The Amazon Studios movie will be available for streaming exclusively on Amazon Prime on July 6.
"Janet King" Season 3 (Acorn TV)
On Monday, July 3, Acorn TV is streaming the U.S. premiere of this Australian series, which Slate called, "One of the best legal procedurals I've seen in years," and TV Guide called, "Acorn's superior legal drama." In this third season, which features eight episodes, Janet King's (Marta Dusseldorp) investigation into the mysterious death of a young cricketer uncovers a web of lies and corruption -- where the public face of professional sport meets the shadowy underbelly of drugs, match fixing, kickbacks and murder.
TV Worth Watching
July 4th Marathons
Every holiday brings marathon TV programming, so in case you want to spend the day off from work/school at home instead of at BBQs or the beach, you have options. A personal favorite is Syfy's "The Twilight Zone" marathon, a holiday binge-ing staple. Or, in honor of Independence Day, why not watch E!'s "Independence Day" marathon, starting Tuesday from 6 to 9 a.m., and then just replaying over and over until 3 a.m. the next morning. You can also pair that 1996 movie with the 2016 sequel, "Independence Day: Resurgence," which HBO is playing right before "The Words That Built America" (see below).
"The Words That Built America" (Tuesday on HBO at 7 p.m.)
Celebrating Independence Day, "The Words That Built America" is an unabridged reading of the authentic words of our founding fathers. The more than 100 readers include all the living presidents and vice presidents, a variety of politicians, and celebrities like Bryan Cranston, Robert De Niro, Neil Patrick Harris, Meryl Streep, and Kerry Washington.
POV's "The War Show" (Tuesday on PBS at 10 p.m.)
This documentary feature -- which wowed critics and audiences at the Venice and Toronto film festivals -- holds its national television debut on the PBS series "POV" on July 3, as part of a series of films focusing on the human impacts of the Syrian war. "The War Show" focuses on some of the idealists who joined the early Syrian resistance. Co-director and narrator Obaidah Zytoon, a Damascus activist and radio broadcaster, turns her camera on her friends, a close-knit group of millennials who like listening to classic rock, hanging out on the beach and organizing anti-Assad protests.
"Snowfall" (Wednesday on FX at 10 p.m.)
FX premieres this new crime drama, co-created by John Singleton, on July 5. "Los Angeles. 1983. A storm is coming and its name is crack. 'Snowfall' is a one-hour drama set against the infancy of the crack cocaine epidemic and its ultimate radical impact on the culture as we know it." Check it out:
"Castlevania" Season 1 (Netflix Original)
"In darkness, a hero returns. 'Castlevania,' a Netflix original series, arrives July 7." The teaser below already has more than 2.3 million views, so ... yeah, there's a lot of anticipation for this series, based on the classic video games following the Belmont clan of vampire hunters."The Standups" Season 1 (Netflix Original)
"Six specials. 2,395 jokes (we counted). The Standups debuts July 4, featuring comedians Deon Cole, Beth Stelling, Nate Bargatze, Dan Soder, Nikki Glaser, and Fortune Feimster." Here's the trailer:This Friday also marks the return of three more Netflix originals:
• "Dawn of the Croods" Season 4
• "Degrassi: Next Class" Season 4
• "Luna Petunia" Season 2
But if you're looking for something non-original, try checking out these two very different options, also available this week:
• "Bad Santa 2"
Billy Bob Thornton returns for this R-rated Christmas comedy, available on Netflix July 8.
Dev Patel stars in this biographical drama -- based on the non-fiction book "A Long Way" -- which picked up six Oscar nominations, including for himself, the movie, and Nicole Kidman. The drama is ready for Netflix streaming on July 9.
New on DVD and Blu-ray
"The Zookeeper's Wife"
Jessica Chastain stars in this World War II drama, based on the true story told in the New York Times best seller by Diane Ackerman, arriving on Blu-ray, DVD, and On Demand July 4. Special features include deleted scenes and two featurettes: "The Making of The Zookeeper's Wife" and "The Zabinski Family."
Sean Bean plays a drone pilot tracked down to his own home by a Pakistani businessman seeking revenge. The thriller co-stars Patrick Sabongui, Mary McCormack, and Joel David Moore, and arrives on DVD on July 4. Check out the trailer:"Song to Song"
Michael Fassbender, Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara, and Natalie Portman star in drama-romance from director Terrence Malick, arriving on 4K, Blu-ray, DVD, and VOD on July 4. The modern love story follows two entangled couples chasing success in the Austin, Texas, music scene. All formats (except VOD) include the featurette "The Music Behind the Movie."
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