If you're seeking a streaming service focused on movies, it's not Amazon Prime or Netflix that deserves your attention - it's Now TV.
Sky's cord-cutter service is far better-served with newer, bigger-name films than either of its main rivals, with at least one new movie being added every day to an already-huge collection.
The sheer size of that collection means it's not always easy to immediately find something to watch though (y'know, the paralysis of choice, and so on). Which is where we come in. The Stuff team has picked out a selection of must-see cinematic masterpieces, so the next time you're settling down for an evening on the sofa, you can conserve your brainpower for picking the right snacks rather than the right movie.
After an opening ambush sequence to rival Saving Private Ryan’s Omaha beach landing, explorer and fur-trapper Hugh Glass’s (Leonardo Di Caprio) tussle with a grizzly the size of a transit van – remarkable for both its breathtaking brutality and CGI – sets The Revenant’s epic tale in motion.
Director Alejandro González Iñárritu must hate Di Caprio because having survived his encounter with Yogi’s bad-tempered cousin he spends the rest of the film fending off everything the American wilderness has to throw at him. Travelling alone through this dog-eat-dog, bear-eat-man, man-eat-whatever-he-can-lay-his-hands-on world, Glass’s grunting, gritted-teeth desire to hunt down the mercenary who left him for dead (played with an often barely intelligible accent by Tom Hardy), forces a startlingly physical performance out of Di Caprio, but it’s the craft of film-making that’s possibly the biggest star here.
Captain America: Civil War
If you’re going to only watch one of the 85 Marvel superhero movies released in the past few years, it might as well be Civil War. Ostensibly the third instalment in the Captain America franchise, it features such an insanely vast cast of costumed characters that it’s more a de facto third Avengers movie – albeit one in which the crew spends more time fighting each other than the real bad guy.
The sheer glut of Marvel movies might feel like too much, but if you’re in the mood for some conventional big budget entertainment, Civil War has the requisite booms, bangs and bombast (not to mention a bit of much-needed levity).
A History of Violence
When Viggo Mortensen's diner owner defends himself and his staff against a couple of thugs, his life takes a whole new turn – but is he hiding something about his former existence from his family and friends?
On paper, this is a simple thriller about how events can quickly shatter small town American life, but watch it with any sort of deft eye and its subversive nature becomes crystal clear. We shouldn’t be surprised, being that it’s directed by David Cronenberg, one of modern cinema’s greatest mavericks, but it’s not often a film so cleverly explores our conflicted attitudes towards violence.
Before his current role steering the James Bond series, former theatre director Sam Mendes made his big screen debut helming this unconventional drama – which went on to win no fewer than six Oscars, cement Kevin Spacey as one of the best actors of his generation, and ensure none of us ever looked at a discarded plastic bag in the same way again.
A bleakly comic examination of contemporary life, American Beauty shines its spotlight on the suburbs – a place of crushing conformity, banality and superficiality that, in certain moments, still remains capable of exhibiting the pure beauty that lies below it all.
A spooky forest, an aggressive goat called Black Phillip, creepy twins, missing babies and failed harvests – The Witch could hardly tick more classic horror boxes if it tried.
Ye olde worlde dialogue will put some off but it fuels the feeling of authenticity and adds to the unshakeable sense of otherworldliness. If you’re looking for jumps go elsewhere but if you see a creepier film this year we’d like to know about it.