An Amazon Prime membership’s benefits go way beyond giving you super-speedy deliveries for free – there’s also a fantastic streaming video service included, offering up loads of movies and TV shows for instant viewing.
Like Netflix, Amazon is constantly adding fresh eyeball fodder to its streaming library, so much so that it can be difficult to keep up with all the new stuff. So, as we do with Netflix each month, we’ve decided to dedicate a regularly-updated article to what’s new – as long as we deem it worth watching, of course.
Looking for the latest thing to stream? Read on, and allow us to guide you through all the best recent additions.
And why not check all these out with a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime Video here.
Note: the newest stuff is at the top of the list, with material getting progressively older as you scroll down.
If you must stream a bona fide blockbuster this weekend, why not make it one that’s basically got only one character and some of the most potentially nausea-inducing set pieces in cinematic history? If pure visual spectacle is what you’re seeking, you’ll find it in spades in Alfonso Cuarón’s one-woman-against-physics disaster movie, which features Sandra Bullock as an astronaut facing down the cold, lonely expanse of space, which has come back to Amazon Prime after a long spell away.
All the President’s Men
The true story of one of the major conspiracies of our time, the Watergate affair, Alan Pakula’s movie stars Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman as journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein. While covering what appears to be a minor break-in at the Democratic Party HQ, they stumble into a plot that reaches the highest echelons of the US government.
With Robert Mueller’s IRL investigation into collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia potentially sparking a new Watergate-level scandal, it’s the perfect time to revisit this classic.
Best in Show
16 years after This Is Spinal Tap alerted us to the concept of the mockumentary, its director and star Christopher Guest returned with Best In Show, a movie that uses a similar format to explore – and of course, poke gentle fun at – the weird world of dog pageants.
Focussing on several entrants to Philadelphia’s prestigious Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show (which is a real thing!), much of the film’s humour comes from improvised dialogue. Guest (who plays one of the competitors himself) realises that human behaviour is stranger than any animal’s, and mines this seam ruthlessly. Hilarious and just a little bit heartwarming.
16 years on from Ocean’s Eleven, Steven Soderbergh came out of retirement to direct Logan Lucky, another ensemble cast heist movie – but one that’s worlds apart from the glitz and glamour of Las Vegas. Set in rural West Virginia and starring Channing Tatum and Adam Driver as working class brothers planning to rob the nearby speedway, it’s a more human take on the genre – and all the better for it.
Instead of trotting out the usual good ol’ boy country stereotypes, Logan Lucky subverts them, and does so without feeling trite, tacky or sentimental. It’s also a fast-moving blast, full of twists and turns and memorable characters – including safe-cracker Joe Bang, played by a bleach-blond Daniel Craig looking a million miles away from 007.
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
The Two Towers is arguably the weakest movie in Peter Jackson’s trilogy – it’s tough being the middle film – but it’s still ten times better than the average blockbuster. Highlights include Andy Serkis’ wonderful Gollum coming to the fore, and the 45-minute Battle of Helm’s Deep sequence featuring Legolas and Gimli’s “who can kill the most orcs” contest.
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
The finale in Peter Jackson’s adaptation of the Tolkien fantasy trilogy redefined the word “epic” – and strained the bladders of countless cinema-goers with its succession of endings. This version realigns the timing of the novels based on appendix notes to include elements from The Two Towers – Sam and Frodo’s rift over Gollum never happens in the book and the more tragic story of the Steward of Gondor is dulled down. But the two epic battle scenes and the sweeping emotion of the trilogy’s climax more than makes up for that.
The Great Gatsby (2013)
Being a Baz Luhrmann film, this big budget adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s great American novel is a glitzy, glamorous spectacle that assaults the senses – and doubtless assaults many viewers’ ideas of how such rarefied subject matter should be treated.
With its all-star cast, eye-popping CGI and anachronistic music, it certainly veers towards the brash side of the line in presentation, but those that can stomach Jay-Z soundtracking the Roaring Twenties will find the plot follows Fitzgerald’s book quite closely, and presents its themes quite clearly – even if all the spectacle can become a little distracting.
A Brit horror romp that melds psychological twistedness with more traditional there’s-something-lurking-in-the-woods terror, The Ritual follows a group of old university friends who get together for a hiking holiday in the rain-sodden uplands of Sweden. When an attempted shortcut leaves them lost in a creepy forest, it seems that someone – or something – is stalking them through the pines, dredging up past trauma as well as opening new wounds…
Michael Mann’s 1995 action-thriller is perhaps best known for putting Robert De Niro and Al Pacino on screen together for the first time but, even leaving aside this impressive feat of casting, it’s a belting, influential movie that deserves watching.
De Niro plays a master thief planning the perfect pre-retirement robbery, while Pacino plays the veteran cop trying to stop him. It’s a simple setup, but the two legendary leads’ performances, the grudging respect between their characters and the film’s exceptional heist scenes add depth aplenty.
The buddy cop movie that spawned several sequels, dozens of imitators and propelled Mel Gibson into international superstardom (only for Mel’s off-camera behaviour to bring him back down to earth with a bump a couple of decades later), Lethal Weapon is a highly potent mix of snappy dialogue, slick action and extremely late 80s music and haircuts.
When Danny Glover’s curmudgeonly detective is forced to partner up with Gibson’s reckless live wire loose cannon, it’s clear that sparks are going to fly – but if one thing can keep the pair from each other’s throats, it’s the group of highly-trained drug smugglers currently turning Los Angeles into a war zone. The prickly dynamic between the two leads elevates Lethal Weapon beyond many of its imitators, and means it’s still a diverting watch 30 years after its release.