This week the 7 best new films to watch online are headlined by one that just spent some time in theaters. That’s how big Netflix’s The Gray Man is: they thought it should get a limited release in actual movie houses.
The film stars Ryan Gosling as Court Gentry (your father may have read the spy novels that bear his name) a rogue CIA agent who is being tracked down by a very bad man named Lloyd Hansen (Chris Evans). The two go on a cat-and-mouse chase around the world, giving some of us the taste of travel we miss so much.
This is Netflix’s latest attempt (following The Old Guard and Red Notice) to make a big blockbuster action movie, so they brought in Anthony and Joe Russo, the pair behind many a MCU blockbuster. Expect a sequel or two, as Netflix goes big-budget to keep its title as one of the best streaming services.
You can also finally watch one of the year’s most unusual and unnerving horror movies from home, as A24’s Men finally hits streaming. Its protagonist Harper thinks she’s going on a calming getaway to the countryside, but the men in this town are very peculiar.
Elsewhere, on Paramount Plus, we get a big slice of Americana, Prime Video delivers a period piece and a bold YA romance and Hulu offers an important documentary and a birthday party gone wrong.
If that’s not enough for you, check out our list of the 7 new movies and shows to watch from this past weekend. And you can fill your calendar with the 17 new movies and shows to watch in July 2022 across all of the top streamers.
The Gray Man (Netflix)
Chris Evans, Steve Rogers himself, has played the ultimate good guy for so many years that he must have been thrilled to get the call for The Gray Man. In it, he plays Lloyd Hansen, a sociopath brought in by the CIA to take down Court Gentry (Ryan Gosling), a member of a black ops team who broke protocol after discovering some very bad things. Gentry, also known as Six, is very good at getting himself out of a bad situation.
Which is good, considering that Hansen will do all the wrong things to bring Six in, especially since the CIA is bankrolling the operation to take him down. I actually got to see The Gray Man in a theater, in its limited run before it hit Netflix, and I have to say, I think you’ll be better off saving the $18 and just staying home for it. Not that this spy thriller is bad. It’s just not exactly on the same level as, say, Top Gun Maverick. Evans is the best part of the movie, and it often feels like he’s doing an homage to Gary Oldman’s character from Leon: The Professional.
Stream it on Netflix (opens in new tab) on Friday (July 22)
The Day The Music Died: American Pie (Paramount Plus)
How often do you ever think about one song? In this day of streaming and shuffling, a song’s shelf-life isn’t that long. And so it feels like a good time to go back to the moment when Don McLean grabbed everyone’s attention, or as he says “I knew I had the tiger by the tail,” with the song “American Pie.”
While younger audiences may not exactly understand what that song is all about, this film looks to contextualize the track around the tumultuous history that birthed it. McLean also tells secrets about the song, while other musicians share their own interest and love for it.
Stream it on Paramount Plus (opens in new tab)
A24 and Alex Garland’s latest film is a very weird horror movie. For a while, it’s unnerving and frightening, as Harper (Jessie Buckley) makes the cardinal horror movie mistake of going somewhere new to get away from her troubles. Unfortunately, her time in a quaint remote village, where she’s got a proper home to spend time in, is besieged by a very odd man who follows her home one day.
Unfortunately, he’s just the beginning of her nightmare, as the townsfolk all seem a bit wrong in their own right. You know the phrase “not all men?” Well, Garland takes a very visual stance on the concept, and … you need to see it for yourself. And if you know anyone who looks familiar, Men will haunt you for a while. Men’s bizarre ending, though, may leave you laughing more than anything else.
Buy it right now on services such as Amazon (opens in new tab)
Aftershock, a new documentary from ABC News Studios and Onyx Collective, investigates a very troubling American problem: the high morbidity rates for Black women giving birth. The film’s story spins out of the tragic deaths of Shamony Gibson and Amber Rose Isaac, whose deaths send their families to fight for change in their memories.
We then meet the network of surviving Black fathers who have built a brotherhood, and are working with midwives and physicians to get legislation passed. Both the Sundance Film Festival and the Full Frame Film Festival gave Aftershock an award.
Stream it on Hulu (opens in new tab)
All My Friends Hate Me (Hulu)
Birthdays should be fun. Sometimes there’s some anxiety about growing up, but your friends and family are often there to make you feel better. Sadly, Pete (Tom Stourton) is learning that his birthday isn’t going to be like most birthdays, though. His university friends — who haven’t seen him in ages — have brought him out to the countryside for a shindig in a big fancy house.
That sounds nice, but many of these buddies are acting like … real bastards. Making Pete wonder if they actually hate him or not, preying on the internal concern some of us have. Beloved by critics (88% on Rotten Tomatoes (opens in new tab)), All My Friends Hate Me deftly pushes the line between humor and horror.
Stream it on Hulu (opens in new tab) on Friday (July 22)
Anything’s Possible (Prime Video)
The summer of excellent YA content — from Ms. Marvel to The Summer I Turned Pretty — continues. Anything’s Possible brings this genre to tell a new story, that of Kelsa (Eva Reign) a trans teen who is trying to get through her senior year in high school.
Kelsa’s life is currently complicated by the fact that she’s got a crush on a boy in her class named Khal (Abubakr Ali). And he has feelings for her too, actually. And he’s completely okay with her being trans. It’s all complicated by the fact that one of Kelsa’s friends Em (Courtnee Carter) has a crush on Khal. Directed by actor/singer Billy Porter (his directorial debut, even), Anything’s Possible looks to prove its title by showing that the narratives for trans teens don’t always have to be rooted in persecution and pain. They can get the last dance, too.
Stream it on Prime Video (opens in new tab) on Friday (July 22)
Prizefighter (Prime Video)
Russell Crowe, fresh off of being Zeus in Thor: Love and Thunder, now has a featured role in Prizefighter, a film telling the true and tragic story of bare-knuckle prize-fighter James “Jem” Belcher (newcomer Matt Hookings). Crowe plays Jem’s grandfather Jack Slack, who lives a boozy and debaucherous life.
Jem’s family warns him that he’s going to become just like his elder, and (sadly), his life story isn’t one made entirely of happy endings. Ray Winstone co-stars as Jem’s trainer.
Stream it on Prime Video (opens in new tab) on Friday (July 22)