As the days get hotter with summer in full swing, there is no better time to stay inside and take in some movies from the comfort of your own home. Lucky for you, we’ve got you covered on what is coming to Amazon Prime Video this month. From an unconventional story of “love” to a daring rescue based on true events, we’ve put together a wide variety of options for you.
Director: Marc Webb
Writers: Scott Neustadter, Michael H. Weber
Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Zooey Deschanel, Chloe Grace Moretz
Starting off with a rather contentious selection, 500 Days of Summer is a film less about romance than it is about one delusional man who has to grow up. This man is Tom (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a lonely greeting card writer who aspires to be an architect. When he meets the titular Summer (Zooey Deschanel), he believes that she is the one he is meant to spend the rest of his life with. The two then form a tumultuous relationship that Tom has a whole heaping of resentment about and a deeply selective memory when looking back on. It is a film where his unlikeability is not a bug, but a feature. It shows his skewed perceptions and unreliable narration at every turn, even reaching points where he will contradict himself depending on his mood. When viewed through this lens, it provides an engaging look into a relationship and challenges us to look deeper at its many cracks. As we hear in the intro, this is not a love story. Instead, it is a time-jumping deconstruction of the concept that finds greater emotional resonance in uncovering the many flaws of its characters.
Director: Steven Spielberg
Writers: Brian Aldiss, Ian Watson, Steven Spielberg
Cast: Haley Joel Osment, Jude Law, Frances O’Connor
A film that received largely mixed reviews upon its release, AI: Artificial Intelligence is one of director Steven Spielberg‘s most underrated that deserves more praise for all it manages to achieve. Based on the 1969 short story Supertoys Last All Summer Long by Brian Aldissit centers on David (Haley Joel Osment) a robotic child who is being raised by parents whose own son has been placed in suspended animation after contracting a rare disease. After some initial hesitation, the humans begin to warm to David. However, their relationship soon becomes complicated and leaves us with the question of whether this artificial child can ever be a part of this family. The film was one that went through development hell after initially being eyed by Stanley Kubrick who eventually passed off directing duties to Spielberg. When it was eventually released after years of delays, it was dismissed by many. However, time has been kind to the film as it has gained newfound praise and appreciation. Even as the ending itself may still be divisive to many, it also is what makes it a work that is textbook Spielberg.
Director: Tim Heidecker, Eric Wareheim
Writers: Tim Heidecker, Eric Wareheim, Jonathan Krisel
Cast: Tim Heidecker, Eric Wareheim, Will Ferrell
From the comedic maniacs that are Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim, Tim & Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie is the duo at their most unrestrained. While they typically have been known for their bite-sized comedy from their show, this movie is the whole meal and then some. It is a work that may leave you feeling sick, though it is undeniably unique and an artifact of cinema that has to be seen to be believed. The story, for what little it matters, centers on two guys named Tim and Eric who get a billion dollars to make a movie of their own. However, that dream falls apart and they have to save a failing shopping mall to make their money back. The entire premise mostly exists just to have these boys get up to some wacky shenanigans. It’s a film that is hard to classify and left many critics confused on its release, though if you’re a fan of their comedy stylings then this remains a must-see in order to get the full Tim and Eric experience.
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story
Director: Jake Kasdan
Writers: Judd Apatow, Jake Kasdan
Cast: John C. Reilly, Jenna Fischer, Raymond J. Barry
Do you ever find yourself getting burnt out on all the musical biopics that come out every single year? Have you ever wanted to see something that gives them a much-needed kick in the pants? Well you’ve come to the right place my friend as Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story is the exact movie you must see. It is uproariously funny with a whole heaping of snark, transcending mere parody to become a work of comedic art that has gained greater acclaim over the years. It centers on the man, the myth, the legend himself: Dewey Cox (John C. Reilly). After a childhood tragedy, he’ll take a run at becoming a famous musician. Struggling with the challenges of fame, addiction, and love, Dewey will face it all down as he chases the ever-elusive stardom he desires. The film is one of those rare works that has only felt more relevant and incisive with each passing year, a testament to the lack of creativity that dooms most modern biopics. Walk Hard reads them all for filth while also being continually hilarious, making it one of the most enduring works of comedy filmmaking that you’ll see anywhere.
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
writer: Paul Thomas Anderson
Cast: Alana Haim, Cooper Hoffman, Bradley Cooper
A frequently silly yet enduringly bleak work of filmmaking from one of the best to ever do it, Licorice Pizza sees Paul Thomas Andersonbring us back to California’s San Fernando Valley in the 1970s. It’s there we meet Alana Kane (Alana Haim) and Gary Valentine (Cooper Hoffman), two aimless young people who get into a whole lot of trouble together. They hatch schemes, discover the perils of the time period, and spend a lot of time running around. It is a film that grows on you, revealing how the two characters are drawn to each other in ways that are potentially bad for both of them even if they don’t see it yet. It creates a romanticized portrait of an era and the people in it while also delicately uncovering the ugliness that lies just underneath it. It is not perfect, facing more than its share of criticism for how it plays around with stereotypes, though it also sees Bradley Cooper swooping in with an all-time great supporting performance. At the end of the day, it is a film that is all its own that burrows its way into your mind for just how layered the world it creates remains.
Director: Adam No, Aaron No
writer: Oren Uziel, Dana Fox, Adam Nee, Aaron Nee
Cast: Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum, Daniel Radcliffe
One of the surprise hits of the summer is the comedy adventure movie The Lost City. In addition to being a genuinely good time, it is further proof that Sandra Bullock is unmatched when given the right material to work with. It follows the lonely romance author Loretta Sage (Bullock) who gets kidnapped while on a book tour by the maniacal Abigail Fairfax, Daniel Radcliffe really having fun with the character, who believes she knows where to find lost treasure. The himbo king and cover model Alan (Channing Tatum) will then try to rescue her only for both of them to get lost in the jungle. You’ve seen this movie before though that doesn’t mean it isn’t a fun time that makes the most of its charming leads. It also has a great cameo that regrettably got ruined by the marketing that, if you’re lucky enough to not know it’s coming, may just be the best part of the movie.
Director: Ron Howard
writer: William Nicholson, Don MacPherson
Cast: Viggo Mortensen, Colin Farrell, Joel Edgerton
The second of now two cinematic tellings of a remarkable rescue that captured the attention of the world, Thirteen Lives takes the fictional approach to the true story. For those unaware, it takes us step by step from the moment a young Thai soccer team and their coach became trapped in the Tham Luang cave to the daring attempt at getting them out. Even as we know how this all ends up playing out, it remains no less tense and incredible to see it all unfold before us. This may be a tough watch if you’re even a little bit claustrophobic, though it is an undeniably engaging work that shows the power of people coming together for good.