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What’s on TV Thursday: ‘The Willoughbys’ and ‘Will & Grace’ | Press "Enter" to skip to content

What’s on TV Thursday: ‘The Willoughbys’ and ‘Will & Grace’

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THE WILLOUGHBYS (2020) Stream on Netflix. “If you love stories about families that stick together and love each other through thick and thin, and it all ends happily ever after — this isn’t the film for you, OK?” That line is delivered by the narrator in the opening of this animated movie (the voice, fittingly, is Ricky Gervais’s). Adapted from a satirical children’s book by Lois Lowry, “The Willoughbys” concerns neglected siblings (voiced by Will Forte, Alessia Cara and Seán Cullen) who hatch a plan to get rid of their comically inattentive parents (Jane Krakowski and Martin Short). The ensuing story involves chases, betrayals and many nods to famous children’s books — including the presence of a friendly nanny (Maya Rudolph) and a candy man (Terry Crews). “Though it tends to feel disjointed as a whole,” Natalia Winkelman wrote in her review of the movie for The New York Times, “‘The Willoughbys’ thrives when it embraces its grim plot and lets mischief reign.”

CUNNINGHAM (2019) Stream on Hulu; rent on Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and YouTube. Audiences who missed this documentary about the influential choreographer Merce Cunningham when it hit theaters late last year have new reasons to consider watching, given that live dance is on hiatus. “Cunningham,” directed by Alla Kovgan, mixes new filmed performances of old works (from 1942-1972) with archival footage, mostly eschewing a traditional biographical overview of Cunningham’s life and instead exploring the work itself. “The well-chosen selections in ‘Cunningham’ reproduce the variety of a Cunningham Event, and give the Cunningham experience of luminous instants,” Brian Seibert wrote in his review for The Times. Seibert called it “an excellent introduction to a great body of work that can be hard to get a handle on” — though home viewers will miss the 3-D technology that the film used in theaters.

GOLDIE (2020) Rent on Amazon, iTunes and Vudu. The fashion model Slick Woods plays a Bronx teenager in this drama, Woods’s film debut. After her mother (Marsha Stephanie Blake) is arrested, Goldie (Woods) takes charge of her two preteen half sisters, searching for stability for them while pursuing her own dream of becoming a successful dancer. “Colorful as a box of Skittles, ‘Goldie’ (written and directed by the Dutch filmmaker Sam de Jong) turns its section of the Bronx into a world of pizza slices and hand-to-mouth cash deals,” Jeannette Catsoulis wrote in her review for The Times. She added that Woods “gives Goldie a steel spine and a feisty resourcefulness.”

WILL & GRACE 9 p.m. on NBC. When the original run of “Will & Grace” wrapped up in 2006, it ended its story with its titular best friends, Will Truman (Eric McCormack) and Grace Adler (Debra Messing), each married, and left them to live an apparent happily ever after. The show was revived in 2017. Wednesday night’s series finale will be the end of the new story line — and an answer to how to end a sitcom twice.


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