What to Watch: Werewolf By Night, Catherine Called Birdy, and Moonlight are all new to stream this weekend.  (Marvel Studios / Prime Video / A24)

What to Watch: Werewolf By Night, Catherine Called Birdy, and Moonlight are all new to stream this weekend. (Marvel Studios / Prime Video / A24)

Wondering what to watch this weekend? Even as spooky season is upon us, this week’s streaming highlights bring some unconventional horrors in addition to more standard ones. On the more traditional side there is the first “special presentation” of Marvel Studios, the medium film Werewolf at night, made by acclaimed composer Michael Giacchino on his directorial debut, a fun and punchy homage to the golden age of comics and horror cinema. On the less scary side is this week’s best release, Catherine called Birdy. Also streaming this week: Prime Video releases an impressive number of Bond films – 25, in fact – to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the franchise.

It’s not a horror movie at all, but it draws on the double nightmares of adolescence and growing up in patriarchal culture, as its brave young star Birdy has to deal with her family’s desperate plan to get her married to get out of debt.

Read more: All new on Netflix in October

Released on iPlayer as part of a selection of films celebrating UK Black History Month by Barry Jenkins Moonlight he similarly examines the psychological effects of repression and toxic masculinity as he follows a boy’s life through three different actors who play him at different times in his life, addressing his fear of how people will react knowing he is gay.

Note that a subscription may be required to watch.

Catherine called Birdy (2022) – Prime Video (pick of the week)

Bella Ramsey in Catherine Called Birdy (Video Prime)

Beautiful Ramsey inside Catherine called Birdy. (Main video)

Lena Dunham’s new feature film takes her playfulness and clever script to an unexpected place Catherine called Birdy. The Girls The creator heads to medieval England with an adaptation of the Newbery Medal-winning Karen Cushman novel of the same name, which follows teenage Birdy (Bella Ramsey) who rebels against her vain, incompetent and lazy Lord Father Sir Rollo (Andrew Scott), when he tries to marry her to a rich man to save the family from their accumulated debts.

Read more: All new on Prime in October

He and Birdy’s kind mother, Lady Aislinn (Billie Piper), feel guilty about her decision for her daughter’s future, but thankfully it’s not a decision she just accepts. Seen through the perspective of his diary, the story follows Birdy’s efforts to chase away his suitors through various schemes and deceptions, making himself unattractive as a prospect of marriage by any means available to him.

Watch a clip from Catherine called Birdy

Ramsey is stunning, taking a very different path from her starring role as small but grumpy Lyanna Mormont in Game of Thrones. Birdy is more foolish, more mischievous, and much more talkative, with Ramsey bringing infectious energy into a captivating script.

Scott and Piper are equally observable as Birdy’s parents, with beautiful chemistry between them all, even if their flaws are in plain sight. It is not a simple vintage piece of course. This is identified through the most elegant silhouettes of the costume design, or the Maria Antonietta-style anachronisms like the various covers of modern pop songs like ‘Connection’ by Elastica, performed on traditional instruments.

Joe Alwyn is Birdy's uncle in Catherine Called Birdy.  (Main video)

Joe Alwyn is Birdy’s uncle Catherine called Birdy. (Main video)

Dunham walks a good line between a flirty modern tone and a contemporary dialect and style, never feeling like a typical Sundance film has been transplanted to medieval England. In fact, it sometimes feels the other way around: the more 1920s tone that leads to her more medieval moments turning into a funny shock to the system, like Birdy wistfully complaining that if only her uncle was her cousin, then she could marry him.

While Birdy deals with eliminating his unsuitable suitors with his wits and mischievous schemes, Dunham puts both modern and 13th-century patriarchy side by side the simple act of doing so by highlighting how archaic such sentiments are.

It is not even a sermon, naturalistically intertwining these observations between moments of fascinating comedy and his story of angst and lack of glamor of early adolescence. It’s a great job by a director and writer whose talent is, sadly, all too often wiped out by those involved in her public image.

News also on Prime Video: The sound of 007 (2022) The Sound of 007: LIVE from the Royal Albert Hall (2022), on Freevee – The Blair Witch project (1999)

Werewolf at night (2022) – Disney +

Gael GarcÃun Bernal as Jack Russell at Marvel Studios' WEREWOLF BY NIGHT, exclusively on Disney +.  Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios.  Â © MARVEL 2022.

Gael Garcia Bernal as Jack Russell Werewolf at night. (Disney + / Marvel Studios)

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is in a kind of creative malaise. No matter what big names, talented directors and writers they put into their orbit, the work comes out as an approximation of the same formula, with rapidly diminishing returns.

Read more: All new on Disney + in October

There are just a few exceptions that prove the rule, like Black Panther, and its next sequel Wakanda foreverand then there is Werewolf at night. Referencing comics from the Golden Age, when Marvel was as often a horror brand as a superhero specialist, this mid-length special is, perhaps surprisingly, directed by composer Michael Giacchino, best known for his colorful column compositions. sound.

Watch a trailer for Werewolf at night

It cleverly recalls the tone and plot of horror films of that era, evoking the look of classic monster movies like Frankensteinas well as the monsters Hammer Horror and Universal in the crackle of film grain (or an approximation thereof) in black and white photography and the corresponding bloom of its lighting, and through its delightful, deliberately crude, puppet work.

Following a congregation of strange monster hunters (Gael Garcia Bernal is one of them – further proof that Marvel Studios gets anyone they want at this point), Giacchino’s work is short and sweet, a blessing in this ecosystem of films that they are often long and complicated in their connections to each other.

It’s not without its traditional Marvel tropes: groups fighting for another maguffino, this time the Bloodstone, an object of power connected to the bloodline of Elsa Bloodstone, a dynasty of monster hunters. While it also serves as an introduction to the character of Elsa Bloodstone, and more of the horror and fantasy of Marvel’s magic users (comic book fans will be thrilled with Man-Thing’s appearance as a secondary character).

Harriet Sansom Harris as Verussa in Marvel Studios' WEREWOLF BY NIGHT, exclusively on Disney +.  Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios.  Â © MARVEL 2022.

Harriet Sansom Harris as Verussa in The Werewolf at Night. (Marvel Studios / Disney +)

Harriet Sansom Harris – a highlight wherever she appears – offers a wonderfully terrifying interpretation as a slightly crazed and overly eager stewardess of the Bloodstone estate, overseeing the resulting bloody royal battle on behalf of her master, the patriarch. half dead of the family.

Giacchino is known both for the magnificence of the soundtracks of his films and for the cheekiness of the song titles he invents for each composition, full of puns and long-standing jokes. Werewolf at night it seems to channel that attitude into one of Marvel’s most unique endeavors.

Also on Disney +: The greatest showman (2017)

Moonlight (2017)

Mahershala Ali in the moonlight.  (A24) A24;  Alex Hibbert;  Barry Jenkins;  Juan;  Small;  Mahershala Ali;  You love me;  Miami Beach;  Moonlight;  it costs

Mahershala Ali inside Moonlight. (A24)

While it may not be in line with the start of the spooky season, there’s never a bad time to review Barry Jenkins’ lavish blockbuster. Moonlightfor her delicate story of childhood and repressed sexuality shot with intimate care.

The story is that of a boy struggling with his own sexuality, told in three fundamental chapters of his life as he experiences both the joy and heartbreak of falling in love. Each chapter brings with it a different actor and a different name: the boy is first known as Little, then his real name Chiron, then Black as an adult. The different names reinforce the distinction between these points in his life even though the actors connect perfectly with each other’s representations of Chiron’s emotional turmoil.

A sensitive masterpiece, probably the best winning film in a long time.

News also on iPlayer: Ali (2001), Queen and Slim (2019)

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