The summer movie season might be postponed this season — or perhaps canceled — but the streaming solutions nevertheless appear to be handling May as the opportunity to begin trotting out blockbusters. The accomplished television founders Ryan Murphy, Greg Daniels, Loren Bouchard, and Hannah Gadsby, have new jobs coming next month. And popular series such as “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “Homecoming” is coming. The conclusion of the month may even bring the introduction of HBO Max. This new service will unite HBO’s existing content using programming and a healthful range of titles in the WarnerMedia catalog.
Here are our selections for the top new films and T.V. series premiering in May, in addition to a roundup of another notable title that will be available to flow. (Notice: Streaming services sometimes change schedules without providing notice.)
Begins streaming: May 1
The writer-producer Ryan Murphy took some flak a couple of years back to his backstage melodrama “Feud,” which depicted the real-life competition between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford in manners both enjoyable and factually shaky. For Murphy’s newest Hollywood-focused mini-series (made with Ian Brennan), he defies the precision police further by devising a whole alternative history of the American film company after World War II. Darren Criss, Patti LuPone, Jim Parsons, and Dylan McDermott — all veterans of all previous Murphy jobs — combine Samara Weaving, Queen Latifah and Mira Sorvino to get a story inhabited by actual big-screen celebrities of decades ago (such as Rock Hudson, Hattie McDaniel, and Anna May Wong) in addition to literary characters, all interacting using an edition of late 1940s Hollywood in which girls, people of color and homosexual, homosexual men and women reach positions of power. The situation may not be “accurate” per se, but using “Hollywood,” Murphy intends to supply an attractive counterfactual.
Begins streaming: Can 8 May
The “La La Land” and “Whiplash” filmmaker Damien Chazelle returns into the area of jazz — and also into the daily chaos that always seems to encircle musicians — such as “The Eddy,” a mini-series where he functions as a producer and a manager. André Holland plays with Elliot Udo, a persnickety ex-pianist who runs a fighting Parisian nightclub and needs a great deal of its house band, directed by the both strong-willed Maja (played by Joanna Kulig, by the superb Polish play “Cold War”). Powered with a diverse ensemble cast, the complicated and episodic narrative — written by Jack Thorne — deals with topics of enthusiasm, loyalty, family members, and sorrow. Chazelle’s lovers will also love the show’s design, which can be immersive and kinetic, utilizing a “you are there” method to catch the pressures of the music industry as well as the joys of cooperation.
‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt vs. The Reverend’
Begins streaming: May 12
The beautiful Netflix sitcom “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” aired a superb series finale this past year, which attracted the heroine back to wherever her story started: the crumbling New York apartment building where she met her first real friends, after spending her young adult years held captive with a religious zealot. It’s possible to think about the new unique, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt vs. The Reverend,” for an epilogue, permitting the show’s founders, Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, to pit Kimmy (Ellie Kemper) contrary to her nemesis, Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne (Jon Hamm), to get a more cathartic standoff. Additionally, it provides another opportunity for Fey and Carlock to research their series-long fascination with life-changing options and roads. An interactive experience, this particular enables the viewer to decide what Kimmy and her friends do, at a narrative where the Reverend’s return complicates her wedding day.
‘Hannah Gadsby:’ Douglas’
Begins streaming: Could 26
Given all of the controversy and acclaim made by Hannah Gadsby’s 2018 stand-up special “Nanette,” the Australian comic faced a difficult challenge in providing a follow-up — particularly considering that “Nanette” was part about her understanding telling jokes would be an insufficient means to process injury. As stated by the glowing reviews that encircle Gadsby’s new series “Douglas” when she chose the first material on tour this past year, the sequel to “Nanette” stays a private, thoughtful and righteously impassioned bit of comic performance art, using short punch lines around patriarchal privilege, the purchase price of success and our enduring obsession with putting labels on people and artwork.
“All Day and a Night”
“Half of It”
“Jerry Seinfeld: 23 Hours to Kill”
“Dead to Me” Season 2
“Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics”
“Trial by Media”
“The Wrong Missy”
“She-Ra and the Princesses of Power” Season 5
“Patton Oswalt: I Love Everything”
New to Hulu
Begins streaming: Can 8
Our present pandemic catastrophe has led us to think more about the future of the human race and also to wonder if cautious preparation and innovative technology can help us endure whatever environmental or epidemiological catastrophes anticipate us in the years ahead. Matt Wolf’s absorbing documentary “Spaceship Earth” will not be much comfort, alas. The filmmaker behind the excellent docs “Wild Combination,” Teenage,” and “Recorder” brings his keen critical attention and also his interest in our shared culture ago to the narrative of Biosphere 2, the experimental terrarium job that was designed to demonstrate people could flourish within a closed platform. Together with “Spaceship Earth,” Wolf believes how noble idealism is frequently thwarted by cruel reality.
“Into the Dark: Delivered”
“The Painter and the Thief”
“Ramy” Season 2
New to Amazon
Begins streaming: May 1
For everybody still overlooking “The fantastic location,” here is yet another philosophical and heterosexual afterlife humor, now not out of Michael Schur, however from Greg Daniels, who had been Schur’s composing and producing partner on “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation.” “Upload” is a shade or two darker than “The fantastic location,” however, it exhibits equally eloquent and satirical humor. Robbie Amell plays with a prosperous coder who dies young, at a near-future at which the wealthy store their understanding at a boutique cloud host, which lets them experience eternity at a glamorous simulation of a hotel — with opportunities to invest more of their cash. Since the protagonist flirts with all the friendly customer service representative assigned to his accounts, he explores the mysteries surrounding his passing. He also belatedly laments the manners his society’s techno-utopia is determined by the have-nots to encourage the haves.
‘Homecoming’ Season Two
Begins streaming: May 22
The first period of “Homecoming” accommodated a favorite fiction podcast into among 2018’s most excellent T.V. series: a low-key political thriller about a therapist exploring her half-forgotten link to a dark military operation. The next season brings back a couple of characters — such as Walter Cruz (played with Stephan James), an ex-soldier still hoping to regain his hazy memories but introduces a new protagonist, played with Janelle Monáe, along with a new narrative. Monáe plays an amnesiac who wakes up at a ship in the center of a river, then slowly finds her link to the Geist Group, the company in the center of “Homecoming” Season 1. These brand new episodes lack the very first batch’s manager, Sam Esmail. Nonetheless, it remains a stylish and character-driven drama, with conspiratorial paranoia as the background to a study of belonging and isolation.
‘The Vast of Night’
Begins streaming: Could 29 May
In this wise and lively science-fiction play, two-year-old 1950s New Mexico teenagers — one a radio D.J., a phone operator — spend a crazy night with all of the tools at their disposal to ascertain whether an odd audio frequency comes with an unknown source. The film’s director, Andrew Patterson, functions similarly magical with his tight budget, building a movie that unlocks splashily — using an impressively well-choreographed shoot that moves through a whole little city — then settles to a run of lower-key scenes which function like a stage play or a radio play. Sierra McCormick and Jake Horowitz are attractive in the lead characters, whether they are chasing E.T.s throughout the wilderness or sitting in front of a mike. “The Vast of Night” is a charmer, and it is also the different artistic genre film that movie buffs can see their kids.
“Jimmy O. Yang: Good Deal”
“The Previous Narc”
New to HBO
‘On the Record’
Begins streaming: Could 27
Originally slated to run on Apple T.V. Plus, this eye-opening documentary — spotlighting the testimony of many girls who have accused the hip-hop leader Russell Simmons of sexual attack — has been dropped after one of its first manufacturers, Oprah Winfrey, attracted her aid. A mental world premiere in Sundance helped turn “On the Record” to a must-see, and the movie became HBO Max’s initial high-profile acquisition. Regardless of the challenging subject matter, this is a remarkable, far-reaching bit of journalism in the co-directors Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering, that utilize the situation against Simmons within an opening onto a larger conversation about how some actors can be so entrenched in popular culture which they become nearly untouchably strong.
“Natalie Wood: What Remains Behind”
“I Know This Much Is True”
“Craftopia” (HBO Max)
“Legendary” (HBO Max)
“Love Life” (HBO Max)
“The Not Too Late Show with Elmo” (HBO Max)
New to Apple T.V. Plus
Begins streaming: Could 29
Fans of the animated sitcom “Bob’s Burgers” understand that a number of the show’s funniest and most wondrous moments come when the characters burst into song. Now the founder Loren Bouchard has created what amounts to a cartoon version of a Broadway musical, including the voices of Kristen Bell, Tituss Burgess, Josh Gad, Daveed Diggs, and Leslie Odom Jr. Set in NYC, “Central Park” has Stanley Tucci is enjoying with the most demanding hotel magnate Bitsy Brandenham, with designs on completing the playground with high-rises. Odom plays with Owen, a playground supervisor using a crusading reporter spouse (Kathryn Hahn) and also two daring children (voiced by Bell and Burgess). Much like “Bob’s Burgers,” this is brilliant, warmhearted humor that balances an earthy sense of humor with some playful musical numbers.