It’s Father’s Day this weekend, and if you’re up for spending a lazy day on the couch with your dad (or if you’re a dad, with your kids), we recommend streaming these 14 movies focused on fathers and the love they give or inspire.
Titles range from black-and-white classics and movies from all over the world, to modern-day adventure classics and even a father-daughter zombie movie. Some movies are gentle and quiet while others are violent and exciting. In other words, there’s something here for just about everyone, on any side of the generational gap.
Sometimes movies and TV shows are of their time. They manage to capture the concerns of the people at a given point. This week, among the new and notable streaming fare, we have a movie about the endless war in the Middle East, a comedy special about cultural tolerance, a nightmarish thriller about the seamy underbelly of “normal” America, a chiller about a victim of violence who takes charge of her destiny.
Sometimes genre films indirectly express our fears and desires, as is the case with this collection’s two superhero films, as well as a zombie flick, ghost story, and tale of murder. Alas, there’s also some good old escapism, if reminders of reality are a bit too much, in the form of a trapped spaceman and a couple of wisecracking robots making fun of bad movies.
War Machine (Netflix)
Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Return (Netflix)
Hulu’s new series The Handmaid’s Tale might seem too frighteningly post-apocalyptic —and too relevant—to watch, but I checked out the first few episodes, and it’s positively gripping. Still, if that’s not your cup of tea, there are 11 other worthy streaming choices here, including plenty of laughter—from stand-up to sit-down comedians—plus some singing (heavy metal), and dancing (penguins).
There’s also a weird 1970s detective and a deranged 1990s baseball fan, crazy killer toys, and crazy killer monkeys. Or, if your taste runs a little toward the daring, there’s a renowned Stanley Kubrick war movie and an amazing French film about a man who writes an entire book using only his eye to communicate. Finally, there’s a classic swashbuckling action movie that’s so spectacular, it gives today’s blockbusters a run for their (considerable) money.
I wanted to review one of Netflix’s new, original movies this week, but after checking out The Discovery, Sandy Wexler, and Win It All, I was uninspired. (Perhaps they’ll all be candidates someday for Netflix’s very welcome reboot of Mystery Science Theater 3000.) In any case, I dug into some other, much brighter gems to highlight.
How about an underrated Steven Spielberg movie? (Yes, one exists.) How about a couple of Oscar-winners for Best Screenplay? How about a couple of horror movies that wouldn’t be out of place at a 1970s grindhouse? How about a couple of sci-fi movies that are based on actual ideas rather than explosions? How about a couple of smart, funny comedies starring Jack Black? (Yes, there are at least two.)
I could go on, but don't just take it from me. Peep the whole curated list of 13 movies below—and then start streaming. Enjoy!
Baseball season is here again, and to celebrate, we’ve got seven baseball-related movies: baseball comedies, baseball gangster films, baseball father-daughter dramas, baseball documentaries, and even Babe Ruth being knocked around in the back of a crazy taxi cab.
But there’s more to life than baseball. We also have Japanese warlords, talking cartoon rabbits, and punk rock pioneers. Add to that list an early film written by one of the world’s poppiest, peppiest screenwriters, and a bold, moving, absolute must-see documentary about five legendary filmmakers who went to war, photographed it, and came back to tell the tale, and it’s fair to say you won’t be wanting for entertainment anytime soon.
Spring is arriving, so it seems fitting that several of this week’s streaming selections take the action outdoors, whether it’s telling the story of a couple sisters turned wannabee train robbers, or following a college baseball team in the last few days of summer, or exploring a black family living in the Louisiana Bayou.
Some movies ask you to ponder heavy subjects, like assisted suicide or children’s fear of abandonment. And some on this list are just plain goofy.
If you were heading into the weekend without any firm plans, consider the matter closed.
The great film critic Pauline Kael was interviewed after her retirement in 1990 and before her death in 2001, and she remarked that there was a certain “lostness” in the air that the movies simply weren’t capturing. This week’s batch of now-streaming movies, I think, captures that thing she was talking about. It’s refreshingly cathartic to witness others going through challenges that tap into our own daily worries.
These stories of searching take many forms, from a dark comedy-turned-crime story snapped up from the Sundance Film Festival just weeks ago, to a recent superhero story about a man looking to replace something he felt he was missing, to a crime film about a man with a memory problem, and a story of two men trying to restore an old friendship.
Mind you, this week's selection isn't all contemplative and heavy. There are two hilarious mockumentaries—one about vampire roomies, and another cult favorite about an aging rock band. All told, you're looking at an array of fine entertainment.