Can you believe that August is here? Such a great month! These include Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy, Alex Garlands' cerebral sci-fi debut Ex Machina, Jim Jarmusch's Ghost Dog, and more.
In August 2022, here are 15 of the greatest new streaming movies.
Belle embarks on a journey in search of the Dragon, a powerful persona known for his reputation of causing havoc. Suzu becomes a digital pop idol and Belle becomes a reluctant high school student who returns to the vast online world of U in search of a new beginning.
This is Hosodas' most popular film to date, combining the distinctive themes and emotional narrative beats of his previous films and putting them into a stunning new world created by a select group of talented artists across the world.
Belle is now available for HBO Max subscribers.
This pre-DC Universe DC film is a supernatural neo-noir, with pre-John Wick Keanu Reeves as a very dubious John Constantine. Made very much in the style of an old detective thriller (but with supernatural elements), it's a campy fun time with a great cast (Reeves is joined by Rachel Weisz, Tilda Swinton, and Peter Stormare, among others) and more than a few silly visual gags.
Constantine is now available on Netflix.
Ex Machina, directed by Alex Garlands, stars Caleb, a young programmer who gets the chance to visit Nathan, an unknown tech executive at his luxurious and isolated home. Upon arrival, Caleb agrees to participate in Nathans latest endeavor: a Turing test to examine Ava (Alicia Vikander), an advanced humanoid robot.
Ex Machina is available to stream on HBO Max.
The third Hollywood film by John Woos (following Hard Target and Broken Arrow) is the first where he got to stretch the muscles that make a John Woo film a John Woo film. Face/Off is a delightfully over-the-top 90s action film that thrives on Woos direction and the two leading performances.
Sean Archer, an FBI agent, was murdered by Castor Troy (Nicolas Cage), a terrorist plotting to murder the older Archer. In his quest for vengeance, Archer decides to undergo an experimental face transplant surgery, becoming Troy. Of course, Troy does the same in return, becoming Archer.
When I saw it, I'm glad we got this one. PV: Mike Werb and Michael Colleary were interested in Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger when they wrote the script.
Face/Off is now available to stream on Paramount Plus and Prime Video.
Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai
Ghost Dog is a modern-day samurai who lives by the code in Hagakure (also known as The Book of the Samurai). He is mysterious even to those he works with when hired to kill a gangster but leaves an innocent bystander alive.
Whitaker is exceptional in his leading role, and Jarmusch's script and direction are perfect. However, Ghost Dog is hugely impressive as a result of the film's soundtrack, the first of its kind to be produced by the RZA. PV
HBO Max has released Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai for streaming.
Locke, a contained thriller shot entirely in a car, follows construction worker Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) as he drives from Birmingham to London the night before a major project. Locke discovers the woman he is having an affair with is about to have their child. As he travels across the country to join her, he juggles conversations on the phone with business associates and family members.
Locke is now available on HBO Max for streaming.
Man on Fire
Man on Fire, a 2004 film about Denzel Washington's role as a 9-year-old girl in Mexico City, was a revelation. With a brutal, deadly, and heartbreaking action thriller starring Harry Gregson-Williams and Lisa Gerrard, it's an electrifying watch.
Peacock is available to stream Man on Fire.
Jet Li plays many, many versions of himself before the modern multiverse slew of multiverse movies. The story follows a homicidal serial killer who travels across the multiverse to kill all other versions of himself, and a group of people who are attempting to stop him from accomplishing his goal.
Back to the Jet Lis. First there's Gabe Law, a police officer, and antagonist Gabriel Yulaw, the previously mentioned homicidal serial killer. Then there's Yu Fook Law (Rastafari Jet Li), Swen Law (surfer Jet Li), Seth Law (Jet Li with long hair), and so, so many more.
The One is a popular game due to its playful setup but also because of Lis's particular set of abilities. Lis personal action director Corey Yuen (Yes, Madam) displays his acrobatic ability with a dynamic energy, particularly in the moments when Li kicks people in midair like soccer balls. Also, Delroy Lindo and Jason Statham (with an American accent and a mostly full head of hair!)
The One is now available on HBO Max for streaming.
Dan Trachtenberg (10 Cloverfield Lane) is the best producer of the Predator series, taking the sci-fi villain and placing him in 18th-century America. Naru (Amber Midthunder), who has been teased by the men in her village for her desire to be a hunter, is the only one to anticipate this threat.
From our review:
Trachtenberg, who directed the similarly sturdy 10-down franchise 10 Cloverfield Lane, has one major feature to offer in Prey: efficiency. The other members of the Narus tribe are there to naysay and/or become Predator fodder; a late-arriving band of fur traders also offers up some huntable bodies.
Prey is now available on Hulu.
Sam Raimis Spider-Man Trilogy
Three of the finest Marvel movies ever released are now available on Netflix and Hulu. Yes, I said three.
Weve talked a lot about Sam Raimi's original Spider-Man trilogy at Polygon, including his excellent use of his horror background, a solid cast with outstanding villainous performances, and a strong moral center.
I'll happily join the masses in praising the first two films, which are both excellent, but I'd like to take a moment to praise the third one in a really interesting way (if you can get past the third act or all the Topher Grace as Venom stuff). In Spider-Man 3, the first two films leave Peter as an inadequate Spidey and, most importantly, a very disgruntled boyfriend to Mary-Jane. Much of this movie is about what it means to be a
The Spider-Man trilogy of Sam Raimis is now available on Netflix and Hulu.
The late, great James Caan (The Godfather) plays Frank, an ex-con and professional safecracker who wants to go straight and raise a family. Unfortunately for him, Frank is denied his share of his latest heist, forcing him to accept an assignment from the Mob in order to break even. Thief is a stone-cold thriller and a gem in the crown of one of the finest filmmakers working today.
Thief is now available for streaming on Prime Video.
The Safdies (Good Time) 2019 film is not only one of the best thrillers you can watch at home, but it is also one of the finest basketball films. Here, playoff basketball is transformed into a literal life-and-death situation; Uncut Gems is, simply put, a jewel of a film.
On Peacock, Uncut Gems is available for streaming.
Under the Skin
Under the Skin is a stone-cold thriller from Jonathan Glazer (Sexy Beast) that is beautifully paced slow-burn thriller.
From our list of the greatest movies of the 2010s, here are a few highlights.
Under the Skin, Jonathan Glazer's existential sci-fi horror film, about an alien who harvests men for painful and intense purposes, is a grim story with chilling implications. (Oh, and a shout-out to Micah Levis' piercing icy score.)
On HBO Max, Under the Skin is available for viewing.
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