This week’s home entertainment: from The Equalizer to Hit & Run | Television

Marco B Divaio

Television Queen Latifah takes centre stage in this reboot of the 1980s crime drama series of the same name. Latifah plays Robyn McCall, an enigmatic former CIA operative whose facade as a single mum quietly raising her daughter masks her reputation in the crime world as the defender of the […]

Television

Queen Latifah takes centre stage in this reboot of the 1980s crime drama series of the same name. Latifah plays Robyn McCall, an enigmatic former CIA operative whose facade as a single mum quietly raising her daughter masks her reputation in the crime world as the defender of the downtrodden. Chris Noth co-stars.
Tuesday 3 August, 9pm, Sky Witness

As well as creating, executive producing and writing this 10-part dramedy, Joseph Gordon-Levitt takes the lead role as a newly single thirtysomething wannabe musician coming to terms with his life as a fifth-grade teacher. The stellar supporting cast includes Debra Winger.
Friday 6 August, Apple TV+

An intense Dominic Savage drama centred on a startling performance from Suranne Jones as Victoria, a woman whose carefully assembled domestic bliss is jeopardised by her unravelling mental health. Ashley Walters stars as her husband Chris.
Thursday 5 August, 9pm, Channel 4

Under the influence … Dion Hesson. Photograph: Tricia Yourkevich

CBBC reporter Dion Hesson investigates the growing buzz around foreign exchange or Forex trading, with splashy adverts on Instagram and YouTube luring in people hoping to make easy money. Hesson signs up for two months’ training, trading on the live market, but he soon realises it takes a lot more investment.
Tuesday 3 August, BBC Three

Lior Raz stars in this flashy thriller as a former undercover agent whose family life is upended following his wife’s death. Grief-stricken, he vows to find out who was driving the car that killed her, but his investigations also uncover secrets that change everything he thought he knew.
Friday 6 August, Netflix

Set across three summers in the 90s, this US teen drama skips between timelines to unravel the mystery of missing high school student, Kate Wallis (Olivia Holt). Meanwhile fellow student Jeanette Turner (Chiara Aurelia) goes from outcast to national hate figure.
Friday 6 August, Amazon Prime Video

Podcasts

The Little Mermaid
Fished in … The Little Mermaid. Photograph: Allstar/Disney

Malcolm Gladwell’s podcast goes typically deep on Disney’s classic princess movie. So deep, in fact, that three episodes are necessary to fully unpick this somewhat problematic film. Sociology professor Laura Beth Nielsen is his guest; the pair have plenty to say about the film’s moral message and the effect it could potentially have on children.
Weekly, widely available

In the 1970s, Chicago film critic rivals Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert went from being barely on speaking terms to forging a TV partnership and friendship that endured until 1999 – and had the power to make or break a movie in the US. Brian Raftery, who grew up watching the show, hosts this affectionate new eight-part doc for the Ringer.
Weekly, The Ringer

Investigative reporter Stephanie Kirchgaessner and Michael Safi discuss the recent data leak which revealed how a powerful phone-hacking tool came to be sold to governments around the world. How did the Guardian and its partners break this story and what are the implications of the revelations?
Weekly, the Guardian

As the implications of lockdown began to fully dawn on Rob Beckett and Josh Widdicombe, they decided to turn their parenting disasters into a podcast. Lockdown is over (for now) but the pod is back for a third series. Previous series have seen guest appearances from Katherine Ryan, Peter Crouch and Jamelia.
Weekly, widely available

Music journalists and “on hiatus One Direction fans” Larisha Paul and Hannah Zwick host this exuberant overview of pop’s winners and losers. Topics include the sun-kissed return of Lorde, the ethics of listening to Doja Cat’s Dr Luke-produced album, and Ed Sheeran’s new video in which he plays a glittery vampire.
Weekly, widely available

Film

Idris Elba in The Suicide Squad
Shark attack … Idris Elba in The Suicide Squad. Photograph: Jessica Miglio/Warner Bros

(15) (James Gunn) 132 mins
Not so much a sequel as another go, this standalone movie finds Guardians of the Galaxy director Gunn drafted in to lighten up the weirdly stodgy tone of the original DC adaptation. Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn is the biggest name returning, with Idris Elba’s Bloodsport joining a plot to infiltrate an enemy-controlled Latin American island.
In cinemas

(15) (Kristina Lindström, Kristian Petri) 94 mins
Things did not work out well for Björn Andrésen, the teen picked by Luchino Visconti to star in his 1971 classic Death in Venice. Working back from the actor’s hermetic life in a council flat, the directors reveal the heartache that followed the highs.
In cinemas

(15) (Edgar Wright) 141 mins
It is hard to believe that a two-hour-plus doc about US art-rock duo Sparks – AKA Russell and Ron Mael – could leave anyone wanting a minute more, but Edgar Wright’s funny and infectious film expresses his passion for them and might inflame your own. It’s also a handy primer for their quirky new film musical Annette.
In cinemas

(12A) (Ben Sharrock) 103 mins
In contrast to the slew of harrowing docs and dramas on the refugee crisis, Ben Sharrock’s bittersweet, often dryly funny film takes a gentle approach. The setting is a remote Scottish island where UK asylum seekers and dreamers from all over the world are sent to await their fate.
In cinemas

Multiple prize winner Coda heads up a decent cross-section of titles from the US festival. Look out for eccentric animation Cryptozoo, berserk teen romcom First Date and Sean Durkin’s The Nest, starring Jude Law.
Picturehouse Central, W1, and select cinemas nationwide, to Sunday 1 August

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