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Mumsnet’s What to Watch Club: 14 latest releases for families, teens and date night

In the mood to marathon the latest movie and TV releases? Here’s our round-up of the top 14 blockbusters and box sets to watch together - or when the kids are in bed!

By Rebecca Roberts | Last updated Jul 21, 2022

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Do you find yourself lost each night, looking for something to watch in the endless scrolls of films and TV shows? Agreeing on a film or TV show that brings joy to everyone can be a tough job at times, and the arguments that ensue if you choose the wrong one can put you off any future attempts at arranging a shared night in front of the TV together ever again.

Finding the right film or show isn’t impossible though… Whether you’re seeking something to watch on an evening together or you want to arrange a family movie night, we’re here to help.

In our edit of the latest film and TV show releases, we’ve teamed up with to launch the ‘What to Watch Club’ - where you and your family can become part of something new and get the hottest recommendations for the best and latest titles to own and watch right now. 

Over the next few months, there's something for everyone, from Sandra Bullock in the comedy-adventure The Lost City to the big screen outing in Downton Abbey: A New Era, or how about a hairbrush singalong with Camila Cabello in the magical re-imagining of Cinderella? Alternatively, immerse yourself in Disney’s magical family favourite Encanto, featuring Lin-Manuel Miranda's stunning soundtrack or catch up with the latest series of the scandalous Gentleman Jack. We've got you covered no matter what you're in the mood for!

So without further ado, pop everyone’s favourite snacks in a bucket, get comfortable, and press play… Here’s our pick of the top film and TV releases for a night in front of the telly with your loved ones.

Don’t forget to share your film and TV opinions in our first home entertainment club here, too.

1. Encanto (U)

© 2021 Disney the Colombian mountains. But when Mirabel, the only ordinary family member, discovers the magic surrounding their home is in danger, she may be her family’s last hope. 

Filled with catchy songs like ‘Surface Pressure’, ‘What Else Can I Do?’, and everyone’s favourite ‘The Family Madrigal’, Encanto is a must watch for any family who still haven’t had the chance to watch it. And if it’s your 138th viewing, so what? Enjoy the magic with your little ones!

What Mumsnet users say:

"We all loved Encanto! I loved Luisa - particularly her song Surface Pressure about being the one everyone expects to do the (literal & metaphorical) lifting. I liked that the majority of magical characters were female. My kids love the songs, especially We Don't Talk About Bruno and the overall storyline. We felt quite sorry for Maribel though, for being without powers." greyinganddecaying

"This is a very positive movie for my son who sometimes worried he is not as gifted at certain things as others and this is ok as we are often gifted in other ways unbeknown to us. We will probably watch this movie another 10 times or more!" Liglig

2. Sing 2 (U)

© 2021 Universal Studios. All Rights Reserved.

“I loved it, even more than the first one. So lovely sitting in the cinema watching the DC faces eating popcorn and enjoying a movie.” Sebastianthecoo

Another film suitable for a younger audience, Sing 2 is the next chapter in Illumination’s smash animated franchise. For those who enjoyed the first film, Sing 2 should prove another endearing instalment. 

Can-do koala Buster Moon and his all-star cast of animal performers prepare to launch a dazzling stage extravaganza in the glittering capital of the world. There’s just one tiny hitch - he has to find, and persuade, the world’s most reclusive rock star to join them! What begins as Buster’s dream of big-time success quickly becomes an emotional reminder of the power of music to heal even the most broken of hearts. 

Every bit as entertaining as its predecessor, this toe-tapping musical will leave a tear in your eye and is sure to have your kids dancing and singing along.

What Mumsnet users say: 

"I loved the car part and Meena falling love." ArtyChoc

3. Turning Red (PG)

© 2022 Disney & Pixar

This ground-breaking entry into Disney and Pixar’s catalogue introduces Mei Lee, a confident, dorky 13-year-old torn between staying as her mother’s dutiful daughter and the chaos of adolescence. 

While adjusting to puberty, she also needs to contend with her slightly overbearing mother, Ming, who is never far from her daughter - an unfortunate reality for the teenager. And as if changes to her interests, relationships and body weren’t enough, whenever she gets too excited, she “poofs” into a giant red panda!

Turning Red has all the hallmarks of a Pixar film: likeable characters, beautiful animation, and a vibrant colour palette. For adult viewers, the film offers an entertaining story that uses insightful metaphors to explore a range of complex issues. And for younger viewers? Well, we’re sure they’ll love this blast of energy. 

What Mumsnet users say:

“Just watched this with my daughters. Really enjoyed it, and its themes of coming of age, mother and daughter relationships, teen problems and importantly, a normal conversation about periods! Which I was very impressed with. Above all it was very funny and entertaining and we all loved it.” superoz

4. Sonic The Hedgehog 2 (PG)

©2022 Paramount Pictures and Sega of America, Inc.

The world’s favourite blue hedgehog is back for the next fun, fast-paced adventure in Sonic The Hedgehog 2. After settling in Green Hills, Sonic is eager to prove he has what it takes to be a true hero. His test comes when Dr. Robotnik returns, this time with a new partner, Knuckles, in search of an emerald that has the power to destroy civilisations. Sonic teams up with his own sidekick, Tails, and together they embark on a globe-trotting journey to find the emerald before it falls into the wrong hands. 

Packed with nostalgic adventure and fantastic representations of what a video game movie should be, this second instalment has arguably raised the bar with its visuals, cast, and the Easter eggs we’re sure fans of the video game franchise will enjoy spotting. This is one film the entire family will enjoy watching together. 

5. Cinderella (12)

This musically-driven, bold new take sprinkles some modern fairy dust on the oft-told tale. Directed by Pitch Perfect’s own Kay Cannon, Cinderella is filled with energy as we see our ambitious heroine (Camila Cabello) follow her dreams. With the help of her Fab Godmother (Billy Porter), she perseveres to make them come true.

With its all-star cast - including Frozen’s Idina Menzel, Minnie Driver, Nicholas Galitzine, Pierce Brosnan, and James Corden - the film offers a fresh and humorous take on the classic fairy-tale, with a fun soundtrack and great performances. Definitely one that’s going to go down well with your teens – prepare for a singalong!

6. The Lost City (12)

©2022 Paramount Pictures.

Some would say we need more comedy in this world, and there’s no better film to watch for some laughter at the moment than The Lost City, starring two of Hollywood's most lovable movie stars, Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum!

This romantic comedy adventure brings adult humour and fun, as we see Loretta Sage’s novels - filled with ancient tombs and daring adventures - become a reality for her after she’s kidnapped by an eccentric billionaire in his efforts to locate a legendary lost city. What ensues is a heroic, but hapless rescue mission by her handsome cover model, Alan.

Thrust into an epic thrill-ride through the jungle, the unlikely pair must work together to survive the elements, and survive each other, to find the city’s fabled treasure before it’s lost forever. Fun for adults and teens too this will having you laughing out loud throughout and look out for a very famous cameo!

What Mumsnet users say:

“I found it entertaining and there was lots of laughter in the cinema.” willingtolearn

7. Uncharted (12)

Street-smart thief Nathan Drake (Tom Holland, Spider-Man) is recruited by seasoned treasure hunter Victor “Sully” Sullivan (Mark Wahlberg) to recover a fortune lost by Ferdinand Magellan 500 years ago. 

What starts as a heist job for the duo becomes a globe-trotting, white-knuckle race to reach the prize before the ruthless Moncada (Antonio Banderas), who believes he and his family are the rightful heirs. If Nate and Sully can decipher the clues and solve one of the world’s oldest mysteries, they stand to find $5 billion in treasure and perhaps even Nate’s long-lost brother… But only if they can learn to work together.

With plenty of action and a terrific cast - who doesn’t love Tom Holland? Uncharted is a solid adaptation of the games and a fun throwback to classic adventure movies of the past. A great family film to watch!

8. Lancaster (PG)

After their box-office smash hit Spitfire, David Fairhead and Ant Palmer return with a wartime history of the Lancaster bomber. A perfect watch for any Dad who’s a second world war buff or aviation enthusiast, Lancaster shares the story of the iconic WW2 bomber told through the words of the last surviving crew members.

Expertly bolted together from archive material, snippets of classic war movies, interviews and unique aerial footage, Lancaster takes us back to a country enduring the worst of The Blitz. The enemy is strong, and RAF Bomber Command is badly equipped. But eventually, the tide turns with the introduction of the ‘Lanc’. 

Responsible for some of the most famous, and infamous, missions in WW2 history - from the Dambuster raids to the controversial bombing of Dresden - there was a deadly price to be paid in the lethal night skies over Germany. 55,000 – half of all Bomber Command’s aircrew – died in the skies over Nazi occupied Europe, with an average age of just 22. 

Lancaster is a unique story of courage, fear, friendship, and the moral complexities of war. 

9. Respect (12)

“I saw it last night and was transfixed. It was the most life affirming but also heartbreaking film I've seen in a long time and I hope it gets all the awards it deserves…” squashyhat

A great one for date night, this biopic showcases the remarkable true story of Aretha Franklin’s journey to finding her voice. Respect follows the legend’s incredible career from a young child singing in her father’s church choir, to achieving international superstardom. 

Much like the Queen of Soul herself, the film serves up a powerhouse performance that holds nothing back and leaves audiences wanting more. Expect to find yourself singing along to all of Franklin’s greatest hits - and if you loved Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) and Rocketman (2019), this one is most definitely up your street.  

10. Death on the Nile (12)

© 2022 20th Century Studios

Here’s one on our list we recommend watching once the kids are in bed so you can enjoy it uninterrupted. This good old-fashioned murder mystery follows Belgium’s premiere sleuth Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh), as he plans a spectacular Egyptian vacation aboard a glamorous river steamer. But shortly after boarding, the trip turns into a terrifying search for a murderer after a picture-perfect couple’s honeymoon is cut tragically short. 

The film is based on Agatha Christie’s beloved novel - a tale of unbridled passion and jealousy that will have you guessing until the shocking finale - and features a blockbuster cast: Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman, 2017, Wonder Woman 1984, 2020), Annette Bening, and not forgetting our favourite British comedy duo, Jennifer Saunders and Dawn French. 

Complete with cinematic shorts of the River Nile and pyramids, wicked twist, turns and a lot of whodunnit thinking, Death on the Nile is a must-see and fantastic sequel to Murder on the Orient Express

What Mumsnet users say:

“I really enjoyed all of it, watching it was a really nice way to spend a wet Sunday afternoon. I also loved all the dresses and Russell Brand was very good.” CrimbleCrumble1

11. Downton Abbey: A New Era (PG)

© 2022 Focus Features LLC. All Rights Reserved.

The perfectly charming, worldwide phenomenon continues and if you’re anything like us, you’ll love this latest instalment and follow-up to the 2019 hit feature film extension of the globally popular TV show. The sequel reunites the original principal cast, who are joined by Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock, Nathalie Baye and Dominic West. 

Directed by Emmy® and BAFTA nominated director Simon Curtis and produced by Downton Abbey creator and Academy Award® winner Julian Fellowes, avid fans of the franchise will no doubt relish this highly satisfying, sentimental reunion… And should be enjoyed with a cup of tea and biscuits while the kids are napping or finally in bed! Plus, with the Jubilee season upon us, it’s a perfect, quintessentially British show to devour while we celebrate Her Majesty. 

12. Jurassic World: 5-Movie Collection (12)

© 1993-2018 Universal City Studios Productions LLLP and Amblin Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Celebrate Father’s Day this June with one of the biggest movie franchises of all time with the Jurassic 5-Movie Collection. From the moments when dinosaurs once again roamed the Earth in the 1993 original, Jurassic Park, audiences have been captivated by some of the most thrilling moments as we’ve witnessed the world of Jurassic Park expand over the years. 

This five movie collection includes the original, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Jurassic Park III, and also the first two films in the Jurassic World trilogy: Jurassic World and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. With the third instalment in the Jurassic World trilogy due to release this year, now’s the time to catch-up on these exciting dino adventures. 

Of course, the films are rated 12 and above - although, some Mumsnetters will admit to their younger children watching it. You know your kid, and if you feel like they’re still too young this may not be the most suitable choice for a family movie night. Or if you think you’re ready - you can just skip the scary parts!

What Mumsnet users say:

“The first time the classic theme played, I got goosebumps all up my arms!“ WONAR

"Where do I start? There are so many memorable parts in the Jurassic films, my son was introduced to the franchise through the Lego films and now he’s a bit older I was thrilled to introduce him to the original films. Watching with a small boy meant the lawyer getting eaten whilst on the loo had us both laughing!" ArtyChoc

13. Morbius (15)

Fans of Jared Leto - this one’s for you, as he brings one of the most compelling and conflicted characters in Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters to life on our screens.  

Morbius sees Leto transform into the enigmatic antihero, Michael Morbius. He’s dangerously ill with a rare blood disorder and is determined to save others suffering his same fate - but Dr. Morbius takes a desperate gamble. And while it seems to be a radical success at first, a darkness inside him is unleashed.  

If you’re a fan of comic book adaptations, super-humans battling each other, and that good old cat-and-mouse chase plotline, then Morbius is certainly worth watching. Maybe leave the kids out for this one, though.  

It’s worth mentioning that Britain’s favourite Matt Smith (The Crown, 2016, Dr. Who, 2010-2013) stars alongside Leto - but we warn you, he’s not as friendly or as clean-cut as we’re used to seeing him. 

14. Gentleman Jack: Series 2 (15)

© 2022 Lookout Point Limited

Here’s one on our list that is probably more suitable for date night only, without the kids in tow. Gentleman Jack Series 2 sees the return of Suranne Jones as lesbian landowner Anne Lister. 

Set in Yorkshire in 1834, all eyes are on Anne Lister and Ann Walker as they set up home together at Shibden Hall as wife and wife, determined to combine their estates and become a power couple. But Anne's entrepreneurial spirit frightens the locals as much as her unconventional love life and, with Halifax on the brink of revolution, her refusal to keep a low profile becomes provocative and dangerous.

Admittedly, it’s not your average period drama - the show disrupts a lot of conventions of your typical dramatic form, and thanks to Jones’ big, charismatic performance to match Anne’s big charismatic personality, Gentleman Jack Series  2 makes for an unexpectedly comforting watch.

What Mumsnet users say:

“Enjoying the new series so far. A bit like Jane Austen on speed. There’s a lot of striding involved! Leaving everyone in your wake looks exhausting.” watcherintherye

"Loved the fact that time and again Anne Lister stands up for herself, believing she is equal to men and seeing no harm in doing things that "usually a man does". Well articulated story, clear diction, nice costumes." agnelcarol

And here’s what's to come...

There’s something for everyone coming in the next few months, as the biggest blockbusters and shows are exploding into your home this summer! Tom Cruise is soaring high in Top Gun: Maverick, the latest magical instalment of the Fantastic Beasts franchise apparates or witness the return of the Crawley family in Downton Abbey: A New Era.

Elsewhere, it’s to infinity and beyond with Disney/Pixar’s Lightyear or soak up the big-screen adaption of the worldwide book phenomenon, Where The Crawdads Sing. From Emma Thompson in Good Luck To You, Leo Grande to the award-winning French drama The Happening, it’s time to take the big screen home.

Want to share your thoughts on the latest films and TV shows available? Make sure you join in the discussion on our Mumsnet’s what to watch club

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