Published: 10:11, 16 April 2020
| Updated: 10:49, 19 April 2020
Here are the biggest releases on Netflix, Amazon Prime and other streaming services coming soon...
Netflix, from Friday, April 24
Ricky Gervais greeted the news that his dark sitcom had been recommissioned for a second series in typically deadpan fashion: "I have never had a reaction like this before. It's been insane. And heartwarming. But now I have to make sure the second season is even better, so I'll have to work much harder than usual. Annoying really." For the uninitiated, Gervais - who also writes and directs - stars as journalist Tony who, after his wife's death, decides to say and do whatever he likes, regardless of the consequences. Poignant and very funny, each episode reveals how, despite his best laid plans, human kindness always gets in Tony's way.
DOCUMENTARY The Last Dance
Although American sports have gained in popularity in Britain in recent years, they still lag behind football. Nevertheless, certain star players have transcended their game to become global icons. One of those is Michael Jordan. He won numerous personal and team awards during a long and illustrious career, and is widely regarded as one of the greatest basketball players ever to grace the court. Jordan spent most of his career with the Chicago Bulls, joining them in 1984. He briefly retired in 1993, but returned in 1995. This documentary takes a look at the events of autumn 1997 when Jordan and his colleagues set out to win a sixth NBA title in eight years. However, as we see here, backroom tension almost overshadowed and ruined their chances of success.
SERIES Gangs Of London
Ten episodes from Thursday, April 23 exclusively on NOW TV
Men of violence only understand one primitive language in blood-soaked 10-part drama Gangs Of London created by Gareth Evans and Matt Flannery, which screens on Sky Atlantic and streams exclusively on NOW TV. Finn Wallace is the most powerful criminal in the capital, presiding over a multi-billion-pound empire for 20 glorious years. He is assassinated and dangerous rivals jockey for position to fill the power vacuum.
Finn's son Sean (Joe Cole) expects to take up the reins, supported by his mother Marian and close ally Ed, head of the Dumani clan. However, time is fleeting and Sean must emulate his father's ruthlessness to stave off challenges to his authority. However, a lowlife chancer, who has a peculiar interest in the grief-stricken Wallace family, could hold crucial information to turn the tide in Sean's favour.
YouTube, from Thursday, April 23
We can't visit the National Theatre at the moment. Instead, it's coming to us - sort of, anyway. During the past few weeks it's made some of its biggest recent hits available to stream via YouTube, starting with James Corden's hugely popular award-winning turn in the hilarious One Man, Two Guvnors. This time it's a take on one of Shakespeare's most popular comedies from 2017. Director Simon Godwin's take on the tale is gender fluid, with Tamsin Greig never better than as Malvolia, an uptight housekeeper about to be swept away on the tidal wave of love that will hit her master and mistress' home. Oliver Chris, Phoebe Fox and Daniel Rigby also appear. Make sure you catch it sooner rather than later - each show is only available for a week.
FILM OF THE WEEK
Spies In Disguise
Amazon Prime Video, Sky Store plus other download services
Orphan Walter Beckett (voiced by Tom Holland) finds his calling as a gadget geek at a US government-funded spy agency overseen by Joy Jenkins. Tuxedo-clad operative Lance Sterling (Will Smith) relies on the agency's ingenious gizmos to carry out his daredevil missions. Unfortunately, boo-hiss bionic criminal Killia outwits Lance and the spy is wrongly accused of treason.
Lance becomes a fugitive and inadvertently drinks Walter's experimental biodynamics concealment potion, which morphs the suave agent into a pigeon.
Spies In Disguise is a madcap computer-animated comedy that won't surprise anyone old enough to have witnessed Daniel Craig's bruising forays as Bond. Pyrotechnic-laden action set pieces are executed with assurance and Smith and Holland deliver energetic vocal performances as the impossibly lithe spy and dorky dreamer, who team up in unusual circumstances.
Apple TV+, from Friday, April 24
Chris Evans, Michelle Dockery, Jaeden Martell and Cherry Jones head the cast of this eight-part crime drama based on William Landay's bestselling novel of the same name. A shocking event rocks a small Massachusetts community and one family in particular finds itself in the eye of the ensuing storm. Andy Barber is a local assistant district attorney who finds himself at odds with his role to uphold justice when his 14-year-old son is accused of murder. Evans clearly relishes getting away from playing Captain America to tackle a more down-to-earth saga, while Downton Abbey's Dockery ditches period frocks and manners to portray his other half.
SERIES Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt For The Bone Collector
Ten episodes exclusively on NOW TV
Russell Hornsby and Arielle Kebbel headline a 10-part crime drama based on the novel by Jeffery Deaver, which screens in weekly instalments on Sky Witness and streams exclusively on NOW TV.
Former NYPD homicide detective Lincoln Rhyme (Hornsby) suffered life-changing injuries on the job. He is a quadriplegic with a live-in aide called Claire and works as a forensic consultant for the department, sharing his beautiful mind to outwit some of the most diabolical criminals in the city.
When rookie NYPD officer Amelia Sachs (Kebbel) stumbles upon a victim of Rhyme's adversary, the Bone Collector, she agrees to wear special equipment to allow Lincoln to communicate with her as she gathers vital evidence.
Diplomat Sergio Vieria de Mello is not a household name, but he was destined for big things before he was killed in the Canal Hotel bombing in Iraq alongside 20 members of his staff in August 2003. Many felt the UN's Special Representative for Iraq was a shoe-in to become the organisation's Secretary-General. Wagner Moura plays him in this moving biopic, written by Oscar-nominated screenwriter Craig Borten. It focuses on the latter part of Mello's life, revealing how, after years of being sent to the world's most dangerous places, he was planning to take one last assignment - in Baghdad - before settling down with the woman he loved. Ana de Armas plays Mello's partner.
DOCUMENTARY Too Hot To Handle
Eight episodes exclusively on Netflix
With the fate of this summer's Love Island hanging in the balance, Netflix sates reality TV appetites with another dating series, which punishes contestants for giving in to their carnal desire. Ten beautiful singletons from around the world, who are shy of commitment and prefer casual hook-ups, arrive on a tropical paradise believing they will be enjoying an erotically charged summer together. Instead, the new arrivals learn that if they want to earn the $100,000 grand prize, they must resist all forms of amorous physical contact. Contestants must seek deep emotional connections because every time they give into temptation, the prize pot will be depleted.