10 New Titles to Stream in May: Conspiracy Doc, ‘Paatal Lok,’ ‘I Know This Much Is True’ and More
From a gritty reckoning with democracy to a tale of two brothers–here’s what’s streaming this month
May spells a lot of drama for viewers what with neo-noir series Paatal Lok debuting and quenching the thirst for something as gritty as 2018’s Mirzapur while Mark Ruffalo returns to screens with a heartrending tale of siblings unearthing family history in I Know This Much Is True. Greg Daniels brings satire back with Upload and while most of us have yet to cut our teeth on The Good Place’s series finale, we can take some comfort in a new VR underworld starring Robbie Amell. Here’s a peek at what’s new to streaming this month.
Paatal Lok (Prime Video, May 15th)
Created by Sudip Sharma (NH10, Udta Punjab), Paatal Lok dives into the neo-noir lanes of immortality in modern-day Uttar Pradesh. The series is inspired by the Hindu mythological realms of swargalok (heaven), dharti lok (earth) and paatal lok (netherworld). Neeraj Kabi (Taj Mahal 1989) plays a journalist, Jaideep Ahlawat (Raazi) takes to the role of a cop while Abhishek Banerjee (Typewriter) essays a notorious gangster in the series exploring the interplay between the four estates of modern democracy.
I Know This Much Is True (Disney+ Hotstar Premium, May 11th)
Writer and director Derek Cianfrance condenses 900 pages of Wally Lamb’s 1998 bestselling novel I Know This Much Is True for this eponymous limited series. Mark Ruffalo stars as identical twin brothers Dominick Birdsey and Thomas Birdsey who deal with their mental illnesses in 20th century America. The series follows the parallel lives of the siblings who cope with instances of betrayal, sacrifice and forgiveness while unearthing family history.
Homecoming, Season 2 (Prime Video, May 22nd)
Homecoming, adapted from the eponymous psychological thriller podcast by series creators Eli Horowitz and Micah Bloomberg, returns for a second act with Janelle Monáe in the lead. Monáe plays Jackie, an amnesiac who wakes up adrift on a lake with no memory of how she got there–or who she is. Jackie’s ensuing search for identity leads her to discover a connection to the core of the Geist Group, the murky and unconventional company behind season one’s Homecoming Initiative.
Illegal (Voot Select, May 12th)
Starring Kubbra Sait (Sacred Games), Piyush Mishra (Gangs of Wasseypur), Neha Sharma (Tanhaji) and more, Illegal delves into two high-profile cases at the number one law firm in the country. Written by Reshu Nath (Bose: Dead/Alive), the legal drama questions the morality of legality. Do greed and ambition make mercenaries out of advocates or does it push them to lead defining judgments, thereby restoring faith in justice and humanity? Power will tell in this series.
The Last Narc (Prime Video, May 15th)
This four-part docuseries charts the details of the kidnapping and murder of American DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena in 1985. Former cartel insiders as well as decorated agents deconstruct the fable and propaganda of the case to piece together facts of the bone-chilling conspiracy that rocked Mexico and the U.S. The Camarena case also inspired facets of Narcos: Mexico (season one) wherein Michael Peña essayed the role of Camarena.
Betty (Disney+ Hotstar Premium, May 2nd)
This teen drama follows the triumphs and travails of a diverse group of young women as they navigate the male-dominated world of skateboarding in New York City. Said collective and main cast comprises the real-life members of NYC-based skateboarding crew Skate Kitchen, including Rachelle Vinberg, Nina Moran, Dede Lovelace, Kabrina “Moonbear” Adams and Ajani Russell. The six-episode limited series is a spin-off of the 2018 film Skate Kitchen and follows the close-knit group of female skaters who amidst redefining the game-view also embark on adventures big and small in matters of the heart, society and soul.
Mrs. Serial Killer (Netflix, May 1st)
As the name suggests, Mrs. Serial Killer follows a doting wife (Jacqueline Fernandez) who sets out to commit copy cat murders when her gynecologist husband (Manoj Bajpayee) is arrested for the killings of a string of pregnant women. Said crimes are committed to make the trail of clues go cold and get the husband out of jail ASAP. But as most trysts with criminal activity go, the real suspect just might be someone too familiar.
Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian (Disney+ Hotstar Premium, May 4th)
Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian is an eight-part docuseries that goes behind the scenes of the first live-action Star Wars television series The Mandalorian, which took the world by storm in 2019. Each episode dives into a different facet of the series–from the filmmaking process to the legacy of Star Wars, how the actors brought the cult characters to life, the tech that enables the series and more. Stitching together interviews, BTS footage and roundtable conversations, host and The Mandalorian creator Jon Favreau pulls back the curtain.
Upload (Prime Video, May 1st)
Coder Nathan (Robbie Amell) is faced with a choice after an almost fatal car crash–risk dying in the operating room or opt for an upload. Created by Greg Daniels (The Office, Parks and Recreation), the sci-fi series takes place in the near future. Nathan chooses to be uploaded and finds himself in Lakeview’s luxurious VR afterlife where upgrades can be bought and digital ties tested. Things begin to get particularly complicated when he dives deeper into the all-new world and begins to feel a connection with Nora (Andy Allo), Lakeview’s living customer service representative.
Billions, Season 5 (Disney+ Hotstar Premium, May 3rd)
Billions returns for a fifth reason, promising plenty of rivalry and new enemies. Navigating the politics of power and mega transactions, U.S. Attorney Chuck (Paul Giamatti) and hedge-fund honcho Bobby “Axe” Axelrod (Damian Lewis) find themselves (again) on the collision course with new sharks swimming the opportune waters. The Good Wife’s Julianna Margulies and House of Card’s Corey Stoll have recurring roles this season with Margulies playing an author and Stoll a social impact pioneer. The stakes have never been higher; power is not just an ambitious commodity anymore, it’s now the key to survival itself.