is one of the newer kids on the block in the world of streaming TV. The good news: It’s got some big names and some absolutely barnburner TV shows, from the first season of The Mosquito Coast to the heartwarmingly adorable Ted Lasso and Reese Witherspoon’s .
Like rivals Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime, Apple TV Plus is filled with exclusive, original content. But unlike the other services, Apple streams only content it’s made itself. That meant the catalog wasn’t huge when the service launched in November 2019, but it’s filling out fast.
The good news is that if you’ve bought an Apple product recently, you probably already have access to the streaming service for free. Here’s a selection of some of the best movies and TV shows on Apple TV Plus.
The Mosquito Coast
Apple TV Plus
Justin Theroux stars as Allie Fox, an oddball inventor taking his family off the grid in protest against society’s failings. Apple’s heavyweight drama is based on the novel by the actor’s uncle Paul Theroux (previously filmed with Harrison Ford in 1986). Now season 1 has wrapped up, Apple has already renewed this modern version of The Mosquito Coast for a second season.
You don’t need to like sports to love comedy series Ted Lasso. Produced by the show’s Golden Globe-winning star Jason Sudeikis with Scrubs creator Bill Lawrence, it follows relentlessly upbeat American coach Ted Lasso taking charge of a British team. Think of it as Friday Night Lights crossed with Saturday Night Live (in London). Season 2 streams on July 23, 2021.
Apple TV Plus
Adapted by Stephen King from his own novel, Lisey’s Story stars Julianne Moore as a grieving widow spookily revisiting her marriage to her late husband, a famous novelist played by Clive Owen.
Long Way Up
Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman get back on their bikes and head north from Argentina through South and Central America. In this sequel to the popular travel shows Long Way Round and Long Way Down, the petrolhead duo goes green. They cover 13,000 miles and 13 countries on Harley-Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycles. It premiered on Sept. 18 last year, and new episodes are streaming regularly on Apple TV Plus.
Apple TV Plus
A nature show, focused on small creatures, narrated by Ant-Man himself, Paul Rudd. Absolute genius.
Like seemingly every single one of these modern nature documentaries, Tiny World is gorgeously shot and brilliantly compelling.
Ordinary people dream big in Little America. A heavyweight cast tells stories of immigrants living their lives in a heartwarming anthology series packed with a mix of funny, sweet, romantic and often surprising tales.
Sixth Sense director M. Night Shyamalan brings his brand of creepy domestic drama to episodic TV in Servant, created and written by Tony Basgallop. After a devastating loss, two bereaved parents adopt a hyperrealistic baby doll to help them tackle their grief, but danger and deception lurks in the nursery.
Truth Be Told
Truth Be Told is a drama for true-crime fans, riding the recent trend of crime podcasts in a fictionalized form. Octavia Spencer and Aaron Paul play a podcaster and a prisoner united by a horrific crime years before, kicking off a whodunit that draws in both their families in an entertaining mix of a character-driven drama like Big Little Lies with true-crime stories like Making a Murderer and The Staircase.
Dickinson takes the story of real-life American poet Emily Dickinson and shoehorns it into a a period drama of sorts. It’s hardly historically accurate — Emily and her teenage friends act more like characters from Riverdale — but it is entertaining.
Home Before Dark
Inspired by the reporting of real-life journalist Hilde Lysiak, Home Before Dark follows the story of a young girl who moves from Brooklyn to a small lakeside town. It starts slow but features some strong central performances, particularly in the lead role.
A fantastically made documentary by Bryce Dallas Howard about what it is to be a dad in these times. Affecting, well-produced. A must watch, particularly for parents.
Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet
Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet is a must for anyone with even a passing interest in video games or the industry that produces them. It’s unique, funny and earnest in parts. It treads familiar territory but is well worth a watch.
Chris Evans stars in a dark-tinged legal drama about a family caught up in a Massachusetts murder mystery. Defending Jacob may be familiar territory, but fans of absorbing character-driven crime dramas will get sucked in.