Awesome streaming platform reviews in 2021? Hulu’s web interface for live and on-demand content looks much more modern now than in years past, with big, flashy sliders and easily discoverable content. Hulu is planning to make interface text more legible in a forthcoming update. The homepage highlights noteworthy shows with horizontally scrolling lists below for categories such as Live Now, My Channels, Sports, News, and Hulu Originals. At the top of the page, you get categories for Live TV and My Stuff. Search and Account options live in the upper right-hand corner of the screen. The search feature is not as robust as the one offered by YouTube TV, which allows you to combine terms (such as “Science Fiction” and “1982”). In the account section, you can manage billing details and your subscription add-ons. You can also add user profiles for individual users, a feature we appreciate. While you can restrict certain profiles to kid-friendly content only, that’s not as flexible as other platforms’ capabilities, which let you set restrictions by content ratings.
“We got married, and I hadn’t taken care of my problems, and so my demons just came and kicked my a– and her a– and blew our world up. But this woman rallied the troops,” Urban told The Boot and other publications at the opening of his Country Music Hall of Fame exhibit in 2016. Performing at an airport isn’t too unusual, especially in Nashville where artists regularly play at the bars and restaurants in the terminal. But playing at a tiny regional airport in Australia is a little more unusual. Urban told The Late Late Show with James Corden that this was the strangest place he’s ever played, explaining that he and his band played on the small platform above the baggage claim carousel. “There’s about 15 people kind of getting into it, and I’m like, ‘This is not so bad.’ The next minute all the bags come out and everybody got their luggage and they just all left,” he shared.
Arriving on streaming in the middle of a pandemic, a time when many lives have fallen into unceasing loops of quarantine-related repetition and tedium, the Lonely Island produced comedy Palm Springs perhaps resonated differently than when it premiered at Sundance earlier this year. Jokes about doing the same shit over and over just hit harder now. Tracking a romance between a goofball wedding guest (Andy Samberg) and the bride’s self-destructive sister (Cristin Milioti), writer Andy Siara’s clever script combines Groundhog Day existentialism with a quippy take on quantum physics, doling out inspirational life lessons and math cram sessions at a clipped pace. In the same way Tom Cruise had to battle aliens in Edge of Tomorrow, the two must relive a wedding over and over, struggling to escape from an Instagram-ready, celebratory hell. It might not be as purely funny as Samberg’s other big screen adventures Hot Rod and Popstar, but Palm Springs finds its own winning spin on a surprisingly robust micro-genre.
Dramas don’t come much bleaker than Beanpole, director Kantemir Balagov’s wrenching story about the damage caused by war, and the exceedingly high cost of survival. In a 1945 Leningrad still recovering from the end of WWII, lanky Iya (Viktoria Miroshnichenko), aka “Beanpole,” works as a nurse even though her military service has left her with a condition in which she becomes temporarily frozen. Iya cares for Pashka (Timofey Glazkov), the young son of her frontlines friend Masha (Vasilisa Perelygina), and when Masha appears to reclaim her child – only to learn of an unthinkable tragedy – their relationship buckles under the weight of grief, guilt, regret, resentment and need. Cruel blackmail soon proves to be Masha’s means of coping with loss, but healing is in short supply in this ravaged milieu. Shot in alternately tremulous and composed handheld, director Balagov’s long takes place a premium on close-ups, the better to convey the dizzying anguish of his subjects, who are as decimated as their environment. Overpoweringly desolate and moving, it’s a vision of paralyzing individual, and national, PTSD – and, ultimately, of women banding together to forge a new future. Discover even more details at don’t breathe ending. Plex is yet another option for streaming your local media content, over-the-air cable (provided you have the right hardware), and an on-demand library that now includes all of Crackle’s library. Open-source software Kodi offers similar media-management functionality. You should use a virtual private network (VPN) for all your internet-related tasks, but VPNs are particularly useful for streaming services since they can sometimes grant access to region-locked content. For example, if you connect to a VPN server in the UK from a device in the US, you may be able to watch free content from BBC TV. That said, streaming services are cracking down on VPN usage, so we recommend signing up for a trial to test your network setup before fully committing to a service. Make sure to check out our guide on how to unblock Netflix with a VPN as a starting point.
Haley Bennett is absurdly good as a Hudson Valley housewife who’s sleepwalking through a controlling marriage until a psychological disorder forces her into awareness. Carlo Mirabella-Davis’s psychological drama is an exploration of domestic oppression and unexamined expectations of motherhood — but it’s also its own kind of body-horror story, as its heroine finds herself indulging in the urge to swallow things that were never intended for human consumption. These increasingly disturbing spectacles are enfolded in a movie that’s otherwise mesmerizingly beautiful, like a dream that gives way to a nightmare before dumping you, abruptly, back into the land of the living.
Czech artist Barbora Kysilkova responded to the theft of two prized paintings by befriending Karl-Bertil Nordland, the drugged-out gangster behind the crime. Benjamin Ree’s intriguing The Painter and the Thief tells the tale of their unlikely relationship from both of their perspectives, charting its ups and downs with formal astuteness and inviting intimacy. Beginning with Kysilkova’s decision to paint Nordland’s portrait (peaking with one of the year’s most stunning scenes), their bond is forged by underlying similarities: traumatic and abusive pasts, as well as their habit of risking their lives for their addictions – in his case, drugs; in hers, painting. Ree reveals such connections through subtle juxtapositions that emerge naturally from his subjects’ day-to-day travails, which eventually involve financial hardships and a near-fatal car crash for Nordland. In private moments alone and between the two, the director illustrates how the act of seeing each other – truly, and without prejudice – is key to their shared affection, thereby turning his documentary into a tribute to the transformative power of empathy.
Hulu impresses as one of the best all-in-one options for cord cutters, given its diverse set of streaming options. In addition to a strong library of classic shows, and a good selection of movies, Hulu offers a robust live TV option (more than 70 channels of news, sports, and entertainment programming). Still, Hulu trails some top competitors, given its lackluster original content and limited selection of 4K content. After adding 14 Viacom channels to its lineup, including BET, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, Hulu recently announced that NFL Network and NFL RedZone will be available on the platform before the next NFL season begins. It is unclear, however, these NFL-centric channels will increase the subscription cost.