The Marvels to Rebel Dykes: the seven best films to watch on TV this week

<span>Girl power … Brie Larson as Captain Marvel AKA Carol Danvers in The Marvels.</span><span>Photograph: Disney</span>
Girl power … Brie Larson as Captain Marvel AKA Carol Danvers in The Marvels.Photograph: Disney

Pick of the week

The Marvels

We are now midway through Phase Five of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (keep up, people), and Nia DaCosta’s light-hearted contribution to the saga welcomes back Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers. The problem of Carol being blessed with rather too many superpowers is solved here when she finds her abilities swapped with those of WandaVision’s Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) and Kamala Khan AKA Ms Marvel (Iman Vellani, providing the “oh gosh” teen angle previously the domain of Tom Holland’s Spidey). Zawe Ashton adds a dash of sophistication as space-splitting baddie Dar-Benn, while Samuel L Jackson’s indomitable Nick Fury owns the one-liners.
Wednesday 4 February, Disney+



Putting the comic back into the comic-book Avengers series, Paul Rudd’s insect-sized hero also brings the fantasy down to a recognisably everyday Earth. In Peyton Reed’s 2015 adventure, Rudd’s recidivist thief (and errant dad) Scott Lang stumbles on an incredible shrinking suit developed by scientist Dr Hank Pym (Michael Douglas). Scott’s small stature is played largely for laughs, but there’s enough sparkly action to satisfy most tastes as he helps Pym and his daughter Hope (Evangeline Lilly) recover another suit that’s about to end up in the hands of terrorists.
Sunday 4 February, 3.45pm, BBC One


An American in Paris

With a 17-minute dance sequence to rival the famed episode from The Red Shoes for visual and dramatic invention, Vincente Minnelli’s 1951 MGM musical is one of the greats. Gene Kelly provides the choreography and also stars as the titular struggling artist who falls in love with Leslie Caron’s Lise, though she is already involved with celebrated singer Henri (Georges Guétary). The film ladles on the romantic exoticism – at least for a US audience – of the French capital, while George Gershwin’s classical-jazz score (I Got Rhythm, ’S Wonderful) still feels fresh.
Sunday 4 February, 8pm, Sky Arts


Rebel Dykes

A revelatory documentary about a subculture of “young, punk, poor” lesbians in 1980s London who took the spirit of the Greenham Common peace protests into the squats and underground spaces of the city. The largely forgotten group of activists, most of whom were involved in notorious S&M club night Chain Reaction, have been brought back into the spotlight by directors Harri Shanahan and Siân A Williams to relive an era of gay-bashing, Aids and section 28 – but also of wild fun, solidarity and life-changing defiance. An inspirational history lesson.
Tuesday 6 February, 2.20am, Channel 4



Ian McEwan’s brilliant novel of mistakes and consequences has been moulded into an assured, mature drama of devastating emotional impact. Written by Christopher Hampton and directed by Joe Wright, it traces the consequences of a misguided decision in 1935 by 13-year-old upper-class girl Briony (Saoirse Ronan) that destroys the lives of her elder sister Cecilia (Keira Knightley) and the housekeeper’s son Robbie (James McAvoy). Tragic and exhilarating.
Wednesday 7 February, 10.40pm, BBC One



Steve McQueen releasing a new film, Occupied City (essential viewing), is a good excuse to revisit two of his earlier features. Irish republican prison tale Hunger is at 1.55am, preceded by another extreme Michael Fassbender performance in this intense, explicit 2011 drama. He plays Brandon, whose high-flying New York job and pristine if soulless lifestyle barely hide a sex addiction that threatens to engulf him. And when his singer sister Sissy (Carey Mulligan) – the more passionate, less in-control sibling – turns up, he struggles to tamp down damagingly repressed emotions.
Wednesday 7 February, 11.50pm, Film4



Simon Amstell’s follow-up to his futuristic vegan mockumentary Carnage is a more conventional affair. A witty relationship drama with a self-deprecating but politely direct lead character who could be an avatar for Amstell himself, it follows Benjamin (an engagingly vulnerable Colin Morgan), a film-maker working through the ambivalent response to his latest, semi-autobiographical feature. Then he meets music student Noah (Phénix Brossard), and their stop-start romance provides the meat of an appealing if meandering story of awkward feelings.
Friday 9 February, 2am, Film4