Streaming this week: 'Mulan' is finally free Friday on Disney+

  • Last month, Walt Disney Co. experimented with the $200 million "Mulan" as a $30 premium buy on its fast-growing streaming service, Disney+. This Friday it will be free for all Disney+ subscribers.

    Last month, Walt Disney Co. experimented with the $200 million "Mulan" as a $30 premium buy on its fast-growing streaming service, Disney+. This Friday it will be free for all Disney+ subscribers. Courtesy of Disney

  • Christian Serratos portrays Selena Quintanilla in "Selena The Series," premiering Friday, Dec. 4, on Netflix.

    Christian Serratos portrays Selena Quintanilla in "Selena The Series," premiering Friday, Dec. 4, on Netflix. Courtesy of Netflix

 
 
Updated 12/3/2020 8:18 AM

Here's a collection curated by The Associated Press' entertainment journalists of what's arriving on TV, streaming services and music platforms this week.

Movies

 

• Film history fans will get a meal out of David Fincher's "Mank," about "Citizen Kane" screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz who is masterfully played by Gary Oldman. Shot in gorgeous black and white, "Mank" transports you into the depression-era studio system, Upton Sinclair's bid for governor, William Randolph Hearst and Marion Davies's elegant parties and to that bungalow in Victorville where the first draft of the classic Orson Welles film was composed. Available on Netflix on Friday, "Mank" is one of the year's very best films and both a tribute to and searing critique of Hollywood's golden age. Amanda Seyfried, as Davies, is one of the great performances of the year.

Riz Ahmed stars as a punk metal drummer who experiences sudden severe hearing loss in "Sound of Metal."
Riz Ahmed stars as a punk metal drummer who experiences sudden severe hearing loss in "Sound of Metal." - Courtesy of Amazon Studios

• Another film full of excellent performances is "Sound of Metal," starring Riz Ahmed as a punk metal drummer who experiences sudden severe hearing loss. The film, which is captioned in English, dives into the world of the deaf community with Ruben (Ahmed) in a way you've never seen or heard before. It's the directorial debut of Darius Marder (a writer on "The Place Beyond the Pines"), who assembled a crack team of sound mixers and editors to create a unique auditory experience to simulate what Ruben is going through as he loses his hearing entirely.

• If $30 was a little steep for your tastes to rent the new live-action "Mulan," it'll finally be free for Disney+ subscribers Friday. From director Niki Caro, this adaptation of the Chinese folk tale about a young woman who disguises herself as a man and takes her father's place in the army, is breathtakingly beautiful, from the stunning landscapes to the colorful costumes. Although it may fall short on the kind of intoxicating story magic that the Disney label signifies, it is worth a watch and may just inspire some curious young viewers to delve into more Asian cinema classics. Also, if you find yourself missing the songs and Eddie Murphy, the animated 1998 version is also available on the service.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

-- AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr

Christian Serratos portrays Selena Quintanilla in "Selena The Series," premiering Friday, Dec. 4, on Netflix.
Christian Serratos portrays Selena Quintanilla in "Selena The Series," premiering Friday, Dec. 4, on Netflix. - Courtesy of Netflix
Television

• "Selena: The Series" is described by Netflix as a coming-of-age drama that follows Selena Quintanilla from talented youngster to musical phenom, aided by her family. A breakthrough star in male-dominated Tejano music, the singer was just shy of her 24th birthday in 1995 when she was fatally shot by a former business associate. The two-part series debuts Friday with Christian Serratos ("The Walking Dead") as Selena and Gabriel Chavarria ("East Los Angeles") and Ricardo Chavira ("Desperate Housewives") among the cast members.

William H. Macy portrays Frank Gallagher in Showtime's "Shameless." The eleventh and final season premieres on Sunday.
William H. Macy portrays Frank Gallagher in Showtime's "Shameless." The eleventh and final season premieres on Sunday. - Courtesy of Showtime

• The 11th and final season of the Showtime dramedy "Shameless" debuts at 8 p.m. Sunday, weaving the pandemic, urban gentrification and personal pressures into the lives of the Gallaghers of Chicago's South Side. Aging patriarch Frank (William H. Macy) is facing the toll of longtime alcohol and drug abuse, while and Ian and Mickey (Cameron Monaghan, Noel Fisher) struggle as newlyweds. Deb (Emma Kenney) stands ready to give her all to single motherhood and Carl (Ethan Cutkosky) feels the same about his nascent law enforcement career.

Tanya Maniktala portrays Lata Mehra in the limited series "A Suitable Boy," debuting Monday, Dec. 7, on Acorn TV.
Tanya Maniktala portrays Lata Mehra in the limited series "A Suitable Boy," debuting Monday, Dec. 7, on Acorn TV. - Courtesy of Acorn TV
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

• Two respected veterans are behind "A Suitable Boy," a limited series directed by filmmaker Mira Nair ("Monsoon Wedding," "The Namesake") and written by Andrew Davies ("Pride and Prejudice," "House of Cards"). An adaptation of Vikram Seth's 1,300-plus page novel of the same name, the 1950s, India-set drama revolves around a university student who's shaping his identity as his newly independent country does the same. The all-Indian lead cast includes Tabu ("The Namesake," "Life of Pi") and Tanya Maniktala. The series debuts Dec. 7 on Acorn TV.

-- AP Television Writer Lynn Elber

Mariah Carey performs during her holiday special "Mariah Carey's Magical Christmas Special," available Friday on Apple TV+.
Mariah Carey performs during her holiday special "Mariah Carey's Magical Christmas Special," available Friday on Apple TV+. - Courtesy of Apple TV+
Music

• During a normal, nonpandemic year, Mariah Carey and her Christmas craziness would be on a holiday tour, bringing joy to fans and lambs in-person. Because live shows aren't really a thing in 2020, she's launching a holiday TV special on Apple TV+ on Friday. "Mariah Carey's Magical Christmas Special" includes a mix of musical performances and dancing with amination. Ariana Grande, Jennifer Hudson, Snoop Dogg, Tiffany Haddish, Misty Copeland and Carey's 9-year-old twins, son Moroccan and daughter Monroe, will make special appearances.

"Wonder" is the fourth album by Shawn Mendes.
"Wonder" is the fourth album by Shawn Mendes. - Courtesy of Island Records

• Shawn Mendes released his debut album in 2015 and he's dropping his fourth effort Friday. "Wonder" continues to showcase Mendes' growth as a singer, songwriter and performer. The album features the singles "Wonder" and "Monster" with Justin Bieber, which debuted in the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot chart this week. Along with the album is the Netflix documentary called "Shawn Mendes: In Wonder," which is available for streaming and follows Mendes' rise and journey over the last few years.

Carrie Underwood performs during her holiday special "My Gift: A Christmas Special From Carrie Underwood," premiering Thursday, Dec. 3, on HBO Max.
Carrie Underwood performs during her holiday special "My Gift: A Christmas Special From Carrie Underwood," premiering Thursday, Dec. 3, on HBO Max. - Courtesy of HBO Max

• Christmas came early when Carrie Underwood released her first holiday album in September, and on Thursday she'll debut a musical TV special to accompany the album. On HBO Max's "My Gift: A Christmas Special From Carrie Underwood" -- conducted by award-winning musical director Rickey Minor -- the country superstar is backed by a live orchestra, choir and her band. John Legend makes a special appearance and viewers will get a behind-the-scenes look at Underwood's 5-year-old son, Isaiah, recording his vocals for their version of "Little Drummer Boy."

-- AP Music Editor Mesfin Fekadu

0 Comments
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 
Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.