THE KING (2019) Stream on Netflix. Falstaff looks as if he has cut down on the sack and sugar in this loose adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry plays. Falstaff, the usually rotund companion to Prince Hal (the future King Henry V), is played here by a relatively lean Joel Edgerton, opposite Timothée Chalamet as a stylish Hal-Henry. The film focuses on Hal’s evolution from sot to sovereign, ditching Shakespeare’s language in favor of a modern English script by Edgerton and David Michôd, who also directs. The story builds up to a climactic Battle of Agincourt, with help from a supporting cast that includes Ben Mendelsohn, who plays an ailing King Henry IV, and Robert Pattinson. “Michôd has a gift for screen violence and is generally good with actors,” Manohla Dargis wrote in her review for The New York Times, “yet time and again your attention drifts from Hal-Henry to the story’s edges, where the supporting actors nibble at their tasty bits.”
CHIMES AT MIDNIGHT (1965) Stream on Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and YouTube. A scruffier Falstaff can be found in this variation on Shakespeare from Orson Welles. “Chimes at Midnight” stars Welles as Falstaff in a story cobbled together from several Shakespeare plays. In a 1975 article in The Times, Vincent Canby wrote that this “may be the greatest Shakespearean film ever made, bar none.” Ownership disputes made the movie hard for potential audiences to track down for a long time; only in recent years did it become easily viewable.
THE SQUID AND THE WHALE (2005) Stream on Tubi; Rent on Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and YouTube. “Marriage Story,” a divorce tale with Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson that hit theaters this week, is the latest Brooklyn story from the filmmaker Noah Baumbach. This earlier movie from Baumbach also deals with the breakup of a Brooklyn marriage — with the parents played by Laura Linney and Jeff Daniels. Jesse Eisenberg plays their 16-year-old son, who witnesses the unraveling of the relationship in mid-1980s Park Slope.
FARMING (2019) Rent on Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and YouTube. The actor and filmmaker Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje mined his own experiences for this, his feature directorial debut. “Farming” revolves around Enitan, a child of Nigerian immigrant parents who grows up with a British foster family in England (Zephan Amissah plays a young Enitan; Damson Idris takes over after the character reaches adolescence). The plot is mostly concerned with the teenager, who winds up joining a local skinhead gang. “Exactly what enables Enitan to harbor this degree of cognitive dissonance is both the crux of ‘Farming’ and a point on which this provocative if slightly plodding movie remains elusive,” Ben Kenigsberg wrote in his review for The Times.
What’s on TV
CONAN 10 p.m. on TBS. The latest in a series of travel specials starring Conan O’Brien brings him to Ghana, where he makes his wisecracks in the West African setting. The actor and comic Sam Richardson (“Veep,” Detroiters”) goes with him.
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