What to stream: Consult this list when you need a delightful movie

Katie Walsh, Tribune News Service on

Published in Entertainment News

A couple of Saturdays ago, I asked Twitter to recommend me "a really good, fun, delightful movie." Times are tough, and movies, well, sometimes, they should be easy, and yes, delightful. In response, I received almost 200 different suggestions, so I compiled them into a list to refer to whenever I need a really good, fun, delightful movie. This knowledge should be shared, and I want to share it with you.

The most overwhelmingly popular title suggested in the thread was John Carney's 2016 rock musical "Sing Street," and I couldn't agree more. Set in 1980s Dublin, young Conor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) sets out to form a band to impress a girl (Lucy Boynton), using inspiration from his older brother, Brendan (Jack Reynor), and his epic collection of '80s pop and New Wave records. The songs, co-written by Carney and Gary Clark of '80s Scottish band Danny Wilson, are inspired by the popular groups of the era, and Clark and Carney demonstrate an incredible knack for writing earworm knockoffs of Duran Duran, The Cure and Hall & Oates hits that are genuinely great. Plus, it's a wonderful coming-of-age love story. There's nothing not to like about "Sing Street," so stream it for free (with ads) on Tubi, or rent it for $1.99 on Amazon or YouTube. Another fun music movie suggested was Tom Hanks' "That Thing You Do," available on HBO platforms and DirecTV.

There were also several suggestions for Studio Ghibli animated films. Many of the classic titles from this beloved Japanese animation studio are newly available on HBO Max and Netflix. Filmmaker Julia Hart ("Miss Stevens," "Fast Color," "Stargirl") suggested the 1989 film "Kiki's Delivery Service" (available on HBOMax), the coming-of-age story about a young witch overcoming self-doubt while setting off on her own. Other uplifting Ghibli favorites suggested were the cozy 1988 film "My Neighbor Totoro" (HBOMax), about two sisters who befriend some cuddly forest spirits, including the titular Totoro, and 2008's "Ponyo" (HBOMax), a whimsical fantasy about an underwater child princess.

Legendary horror actress Barbara Crampton suggested the 1979 Hal Ashby dark comedy "Being There," starring the legendary British comedian Peter Sellers (best known as Inspector Clouseau in Blake Edwards' "Pink Panther" films) in one of his last roles. "Being There" is available for a $3.99 digital rental on various platforms. If the film sparks your interest in Sellers, check out the 1963 "The Pink Panther," available on DirecTV and for a $3.99 digital rental. Or watch "The Ghost of Peter Sellers," a documentary released this summer by filmmaker Peter Medak, whose own pirate comedy "Ghost in the Noonday Sun" was sunk in part by the antics of the mercurial Sellers in 1973 ($3.99 rental on the usual digital platforms).

Another Ashby film recommended by many was the life-affirming "Harold and Maude," about a relationship between a death-obsessed teenager and an octogenarian. That one is free to stream on Amazon Prime, HBO Max, and free with ads on Tubi and Pluto. This black comedy is a true delight: Ruth Gordon and Bud Cort give unforgettable performances, and the Cat Stevens soundtrack will warm your soul.


There were lots of classic screwball comedies suggested, including two Preston Sturges films, "The Lady Eve," and "Sullivan's Travels," both available for $3.99 digital rental, and "My Man Godfrey" (a favorite of mine), available on Amazon Prime Video, and free to stream with ads on Tubi and Pluto TV.

I hope you find a bit of joy and delight in one of these movie suggestions. We could all use some right now.

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