It’s officially holiday season! Whether you’re searching for TV shows to download and watch on the train home, or making the most of the lazy weekends by curling up on the sofa, Netflix is on a mission to make itself indispensable this December.
And there are tonnes of exciting shows and films coming down the track, just in time for Christmas. Here’s our round-up of some of the best film and TV coming to the streamer this month.
Shaun the Sheep: The The Flight Before Christmas (2021)
What is more festive than everyone’s favourite sheep on a Christmas adventure? Eleven long years after We Wish Ewe A Merry Christmas, viewers join Shaun as he hunts for a bigger stocking. If the trailer is anything to go by, it’s going to be an absolute treat: expect a gang of sheep flocking to have fun against a backdrop of Christmas trees and lights, the Farmer dressed as Father Christmas and a snow-covered Mossy Bottom Farm.
Lady Chatterley’s Lover (2022)
Emma Corrin, who was so good playing Diana in The Crown, now plays Lady Chatterley in the Netflix adaption of D. H. Lawrence’s 1928 classic. Jack O’Connell (Skins) is her lover Oliver Mellors, Matthew Duckett is Sir Clifford Chatterley and award-winning director Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre (The Act, The Mustang) is behind the camera. Reviews have been largely positive, with one newspaper saying the film presents “sensuality as an almost religious revelation”.
Scrooge: A Christmas Carol (2022)
Every year there’s another A Christmas Carol adaption, and every year we’re just as thrilled to sit down and watch it. This time it’s an animated musical, with Luke Evans voicing the titular miser Scrooge, alongside a cast that includes award-winning actors Jessie Buckley, Olivia Colman and James Cosmo.
In this new documentary, Robert Downey Jr. plays tribute to his anti-establishment filmmaker father, Robert Downey Sr., who died of Parkinson’s in 2021. The documentary follows Downey Sr. as he is making his own documentary about his life, and explores the relationship between the father and son as well as looking into the life and career of Downey Sr..
Five-time Emmy nominee filmmaker Chris Smith, who most recently made Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, about the failed music festival, said: “Larger than life, but open and human as ever, it was such a pleasure and life-affirming experience to capture some glimpses of the highs, lows and everything in between.”
Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths (2022)
This black comedy drama from Alejandro González Iñárritu has been seriously dividing the critics since its theatrical release last week. One paper said it was “bloated with self-regard” while another said it was “exhausting”, but Oscar-winning director Guillermo del Toro said, “The movie is undeniably one of the most powerful things I’ve seen in terms of cinema, pure cinema”. Running for a whopping two hours and forty minutes, Bardo details the unravelling of a journalist/documentarian when he returns home to Mexico and starts to have an existential crisis. Spanish-born Mexican actor Daniel Giménez Cacho stars.
They Cloned Tyrone (2022)
John Boyega and Jamie Foxx star in this science fiction comedy mystery film about a series of strange events that end up launching a motley trio into a government conspiracy.
With Juel Taylor (who wrote Creed II and Space Jam: A New Legacy) directing and Teyonah Parris (WandaVision), Kiefer Sutherland (Melancholia) and J. Alphonse Nicholson (Just Mercy) also starring, it’s set to be a tonne of fun. Aesthetically extremely appealing (just look at the trailer) it is getting described as “pulpy”, but, surely, in the best possible way.
Too Hot To Handle (Season 4)
If you’ve watched this series you can already hear the three-tone chime of the rule-making cone Lana ringing in your ears. The premise is simple: a group of extremely good-looking sex-obsessed singletons are sent to a tropical island believing they are going to spend several weeks partying and coupling up for the cameras. But the twist is that they’re actually on a show where sexual relations of any kind (including kissing) are banned and they will lose precious prize money for every transgression.
Given the show’s success, it’s hard to believe that the contestants really think they’ve applied for a wild summer of sex, but they’re very good at pretending they are shocked when Lana pops up to read them the rules.
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (2022)
The third Pinocchio film to be released this year (Disney released a live-action remake of its 1940 classic in September, while Lionsgate released Pinocchio: A True Story in February) Guillermo del Toro’s stop-motion animated musical adaption is something very different. For example, he leaves Pinocchio unfinished: “To me, it’s essential to counter the idea that you have to change into a flesh-and-blood child to be a real human,” Del Toro told Vanity Fair. Set in Italy between the two world wars, Del Toro’s deals with topics including childhood, obedience and ethics in his stylish reimagination which is set against a backdrop of rising fascism in Italy.
The Recruit (Season 1)
Heartthrob Noah Centineo (who found international fame in Netflix’s 2018 teen favourite, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before) is CIA agent Owen in this new thriller series. In the first week on the job, Owen finds himself entangled in a web of power politics when he discovers a threatening letter from former asset Max Meladze (Laura Haddock). Aarti Mann (The Big Bang Theory), Colton Dunn (Key & Peele), Fivel Stewart (Atypical) and Daniel Quincy Annoh (Bus Stop) also star.
Emily in Paris (Season 3)
Emily in Paris has divided critics from the off, which has only, in fact, worked to its benefit, with hundreds of articles circulating the internet every season, dissecting every element of the show. Last season was left on a major cliffhanger, as the series stopped short of revealing whether Emily (Lily Collins) will follow boss Sylvie on her new business adventure, or return to America after being heartbroken by finding out that Camille and Gabriel have reunited. Now the wait is nearly over.
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (2022)
Daniel Craig returns to play Detective Benoit Blanc in the second instalment of the super successful 2019 thriller Knives Out. This time, an all-new cast is friends of tech billionaire Miles Bron (Edward Norton). They’re invited to his private Greek Island to play a murder mystery game, but it’s when someone dies that the real mystery begins. Starring Janelle Monáe, Leslie Odom Jr., Kate Hudson, Ethan Hawke and Dave Bautista.
The Witcher: Blood Origin (Limited Series)
Set 1,200 years before The Witcher, this four-part limited spin-off series stars Michelle Yeoh, Lenny Henry, Sophia Brown (Giri/Haji) and Laurence O’Fuarain (Game of Thrones) and details the creation of the first Witcher and the Elven civilization. With The Witcher season 3 set to be released in Spring of next year, this will surely plug the hole for fans, atleast for some time, as they await the next series.