Best films to stream this week: 18 Nov

Best films to stream this week: 18 Nov

Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey

Our weekly guide to the best films available on home entertainment platforms

Here at The List we tend to look forward to what's on the horizon but, with entertainment options limited, knowing what to watch right now in the comfort of your home is still much needed. To help ride out these challenging times, we'll keep casting our expert eye over what's new to TV and streaming services each week, bringing you the cream of the current movie crop. Let us do the decision-making for you, and then just sit back and enjoy.

Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey ★★★★☆

With how things have gone this year, we're seizing the excuse to get into the Christmas spirit early, and David E Talbert's festive musical fantasy is the perfect way to kick things off. Featuring splendid songs – by John Legend and eight-time Grammy-winner Philip Lawrence amongst others – and a fine, predominantly African-American cast, including Forest Whitaker and Keegan-Michael Key, it's absolutely stuffed with delights. It tells the story of extraordinary inventor Jeronicus Jangle (Whitaker), whose life of turmoil is turned around by the arrival of his estranged, bright-spark granddaughter (the adorable Madalen Mills).
Watch now on Netflix.

The Life Ahead ★★★★☆

Bringing her incomparable screen presence back to our attention, the great Sophia Loren bags a wonderful role as Madame Rosa, in this new adaptation of French author Romain Gary's novel The Life Before Us, with events transposed to coastal Italy. Loren is directed by her son Edoardo Ponti in a touching tale of a former prostitute who takes a 12-year-old Senegalese orphan into her care. Newcomer Ibrahima Gueye is Loren's equal as the boy in question and the two form an irresistible double act as they overcome mutual suspicion and stubbornness to forge a transformative bond.
Watch now on Netflix.

Apostasy ★★★★☆

We're loving BBC Two's British film season and another recent gem that's still available to watch on iPlayer is Daniel Kokotajlo's riveting BAFTA-nominated exploration of his former faith, which was released in cinemas in 2018. It stars the ever-excellent Siobhan Finneran as a single mother and Jehovah's Witness, raising her two very different daughters (played by Sacha Parkinson and Molly Wright) in accordance with her beliefs. When one falls pregnant and the other requires a blood transfusion it's a real test of faith.
Watch now on iPlayer.

Never Rarely Sometimes Always ★★★★★

One of the films of the year makes it to television and, given its mid-lockdown original release, it's one few will have seen. The American director of Beach Rats, Eliza Hittman, is behind this empathetic abortion drama which follows two teens (Sidney Flanigan and Talia Ryder) from small-town Pennsylvania to New York City when one of them requires a termination that's not easy to secure locally. With recent changes to the make-up of the Supreme Court threatening women's right to choose, it's a timely and consequently terrifying watch.
Watch now on Sky Cinema.

Jojo Rabbit ★★★★★

Another highlight of the year, though its cinema release feels a very long time ago now, the Oscar-winning Jojo Rabbit takes a daringly light-hearted and occasionally emotionally devastating look at Nazi Germany, through the eyes of a young boy (lovely work from Britain's Roman Griffin Davis), for whom it's all a bit of a game. Kiwi writer-director Taika Waititi loosely adapts Christine Leunens novel Caging Skies and, as a performer, offers his unique take on Adolf Hitler, while Sam Rockwell, Scarlett Johansson, Stephen Merchant, Rebel Wilson and Alfie Allen round out the superb cast. It shouldn't work, but it does magnificently.
Watch now on Sky Cinema.