Best Films to Watch in London and Stream This Week

From cinema releases to streaming gems, including a harrowing odyssey through war-torn Poland and Director Bong on the big screen

Fancy a film but can't make your mind up what to see? Look no further: we’ve assembled the best of what's showing in London, plus the latest streaming releases, and gathered them here to make choosing a great movie as easy as possible. Whatever you're in the mood for, out in the world or in the comfort of your own home, WeLoveCinema has you well and truly covered…

 

New Releases

The Painted Bird

Where to watch it: Get London showtimes or watch on various streaming services

A truly hellish ride, set at the end of World War II, this harrowing, explicit, and frankly deranged vision of a young boy’s odyssey through a decimated Poland won’t win any prizes for subtlety. Based on the novel of the same name by Jerzy Kosiński and directed by controversial filmmaker Václav Marhoul, it’s a gorgeously shot but bloody attempt to grapple with the weight of history – a kind of modern day reinvention of Russian masterpiece Come and See.

 

Cuties

Where to watch it: Netflix

Hit with a wave of unnecessary controversy in the weeks before its release and prejudged by internet hordes, Cuties – the debut film from the immensely talented French filmmaker Maïmouna Doucouré – announces its writer-director as a major talent to watch. The story finds a young Muslim girl who finds herself being pulled between two worlds, touching on themes of hypersexualisation and internet culture. Think Girlhood with something of Sofia Coppola’s The Bling Ring.

 

The Broken Hearts Gallery

Where to watch it: Get London showtimes

This affable romantic comedy hones in on a New York gallery assistant who decides to create an exhibit showcasing important and sentimental items from her previous relationships. Starring Geraldine Viswanathan – excellent in Blockers and Bad Education – and produced by Selena Gomez, it’s a worthy ode to relationships, past and present. Dacre Montgomery, Phillipa Soo, and Molly Gordon round out the cast.

 

La Haine

Where to watch it: Get London showtimes

One of the most acclaimed and influential movies of all time, Mathieu Kassovitz’s groundbreaking, inventive masterpiece – now 25 years old – returns to the big screen following a brand new 4K restoration. Based on true events, it follows three friends – one played by Vincent Cassel in a star-making turn – over the course of a single day in the Parisian housing projects. As timely today as it was upon first release, La Haine returns as a bold and beautiful triumph.

 

Memories of Murder

Where to watch it: Get London showtimes or watch on various streaming services

Parasite deserves every inch of praise that has come its way, but is Bong Joon-ho’s definitive masterpiece actually his second feature? His 2003 masterpiece Memories of Murder returns to cinemas and streaming platforms as a brilliant, singular vision, showcasing the genre-bending filmmaker at the height of his powers. Based on the true story of South Korea’s first serial killer, it’s as hilarious as it is harrowing.

Still in Cinemas and Streaming

I'm Thinking of Ending Things

Where to watch it: Netflix

Acclaimed writer-director Charlie Kaufman has given us yet another cerebral drama about the unknowable nature of relationships, this time based on a novel by Iain Reid. I'm Thinking of Ending Things stars Jessie Buckley as a young woman who considers splitting with her boyfriend, played by Jesse Plemons, only for the thought to trigger an incalculable number of scenarios, shifts, and possibilities during a trip to meet his parents. Do you really think it's possible to explain a Charlie Kaufman film in a paragraph? (read our full review).

 

Mulan

Where to watch it: Disney+

Delayed several times due to the pandemic, Mulan – the latest Disney classic to get the live-action treatment – arrives not, as one might have expected, in cinemas, but on streaming service Disney+. Eschewing the talking dragon and iconic musical numbers, this version finds an altogether less cynical approach, leaning less heavily on nostalgia and more on “historical epic” territory and the long tradition of Chinese wuxia movies.

 

Les Miserables

Where to watch it: Get London showtimes

Thankfully, you won't find Russell Crowe doing any singing here. Instead this acclaimed French drama tells the story of a cop who moves to Paris to join the Anti-Crime Brigade of Montfermeil, only to find himself entangled in an underworld of warring factions. Directed with visual panache by Ladj Ly, it's loosely based on the real-life instances of police violence which took place in Paris back in 2008.

Tenet

Where to watch it: Get London showtimes

After being delayed three times due to the global pandemic, Christopher Nolan's latest mindbender – about a temporal agent trying to prevent World War III using “time inversion” – has finally arrived in cinemas. Was it worth the wait? That'll depend on your tolerance for a plot that refuses to explain itself in any coherent way and seems designed to baffle audiences into a stupor. It's hugely ambitious, bold and extremely Nolan. Whatever your take, it must be said that this filmmaker doesn't do things by halves (read our full review).

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Reviews

The Great Buster: A Celebration review – icon of silent film is still the pinnacle

Peter Bogdanovich’s documentary on Buster Keaton is a decent portrait of an early cinema hero – but you’ll learn more from Keaton’s own, uproarious work

76 Days review – eerie look at the start of the pandemic

This brave chronicle of four Wuhan hospitals battling the first cases of COVID-19 makes for bleak but essential viewing

Time review – two decades of love intercut by an unjust America

This deeply moving documentary maps the failings of the prison-industrial complex through one woman’s journey to reunite with her husband

Monsoon review – quiet and contemplative journey to Vietnam

Henry Golding stars as a man returning to his country of birth in this thoughtful, entrancing travelogue from filmmaker Hong Khaou