Reel Dad: Giving streaming movies like ‘Morning Glory’ a second chance

Julia Roberts, left, and Tom Hanks are shown in a scene from “Larry Crowne,” which is currently streaming on Hulu.

Julia Roberts, left, and Tom Hanks are shown in a scene from “Larry Crowne,” which is currently streaming on Hulu.

Bruce Talamon / AP

Related: Streaming films get a second chance part 2

The hot summer continues without the chance to enjoy a first-run movie at a theater. So, this can be a good time to give movies a second chance when they stream.

Here are seven films that are currently available to stream online. What makes them interesting is that, while I didn’t like them the first time around, they each deserve another viewing. Who knows, maybe this time, I may like them better!

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968, Amazon Prime)

In the 1960s - after the success of Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music - every studio jumped onto the musical bandwagon. This tune-filled adaptation of a story by Ian Fleming (the creator of James Bond) features a flying car and a score by Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman who wrote the songs for Poppins. Despite Dick Van Dyke’s charisma, the film never took off when I saw it the first time. Maybe I was disappointed that Julie Andrews had turned it down. Will the second viewing be the charm?

Christopher Robin (2018, Netflix)

On paper, as I wrote in my review when the film opened, the concept sounds promising, to “take the beloved characters of the famed stories for children, package them with the polish that computer generation can create, and give them voices from talented vocal actors.” But something happened between concept and production and this well-intentioned family films loses its momentum within the first 30 minutes. Maybe it will play better this time.

Five Flights Up (2015, Netflix)

“If you follow New York City real estate, savor any opportunity to watch Diane Keaton and Morgan Freeman on screen, or melt when you see a cute dog in a movie, you should enjoy,” as I first reviewed, this gentle look at how people who age consider where to live. “But if you need special effects, action sequences or loud music to accompany your popcorn, you should move on.” Maybe this quiet film may feel more comfortable today than it did five years ago?

Larry Crowne (2011, Hulu)

While any significant event, such as the 2008 economic meltdown, offers parents the chance to share insights with children, this disappointing film, as I wrote when it opened, “tries to fit these lessons into the framework of an engaging romantic comedy. But the very busy Tom Hanks - the film’s star, director and co-writer - works so hard to try to tell too many stories that he ends up serving a mixed-up mess.” Sharing the confusion is his under-used costar, the lovely Julia Roberts.

Morning Glory (2010, Hulu)

When this comedy opened, I wrote, “Movies like Morning Glory portray worlds that are impossible to believe, pretend to offer meaningful messages to audiences hungry for a moral and preserve dated notions of how women in the workplace must act in order to professionally progress. Such films - usually comedies with a slight dramatic edge - flood the movie market each year at a rate that makes them almost impossible to tell apart.” Oh, my. Maybe I will I like it better this time?

Quartet (2013, Netflix)

Joining a wave of films about senior citizens in the early 2010s was this first film directed by Dustin Hoffman. As I wrote, “this entertaining visit to a retirement home for professional musicians may not develop its characters as effectively as The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel or offer the insight of Amour into aging, but this tasty movie snack offers marvelous actors roles moments to shine even if the film never challenges the mind.” Maybe, this time, it will feel more substantive?

Soapdish (1991, Amazon Prime)

My son (and fellow film critic) Jonathan loves this zany comedy about life in front of and behind the television screen of a popular soap opera. With Sally Field chewing a lot of scenery as an overly-emotional actress, and Whoopi Goldberg delivering one-liners as her trusted assistant, the film always felt forced to me, as if writer Robert Harling (of Steel Magnolias fame) never fully trusted his sense of humor. But Jonathan continues to urge me to give the movie a second chance. I will.

As you continue to look for entertainment at home, consider a fresh look at films from your past. You never know what you may discover the second time around.