After a few weeks of empty offerings from streaming services across the board, finally, the likes of Netflix, Amazon, MUBI and Apple TV have heeded the call from fans, providing a mouth-watering slate for the second weekend of July.
As always, we’ve got you covered for all your entertainment needs this weekend, with our list of the ten best films and TV programmes to stream containing brand new releases and old classics that demand repeat viewings. Featuring filmmakers such as Mario Bava, Noah Baumbach, Tobe Hooper, Mike Leigh and Stephen Frears, this week’s list is certainly stacked with some big hitters.
One of the most notable releases goes to the new Apple TV+ series, Black Bird, with the new programme being essential viewing purely for the reason that it represents Ray Liotta’s final TV role.
So, without any more preamble, let’s take a look at the very best new releases to watch this weekend on your favourite streaming sites.
The 10 best new releases to stream this weekend:
10. Blood and Black Lace (1964) – MUBI – Available now
The best director you (maybe) have never heard of, the Italian filmmaker Mario Bava would help to define the Giallo subgenre of horror in the 1970s with his films of bloody violence, shadowed killers and surreal camerawork. His 1964 movie, Blood and Black Lace, is undoubtedly one of his very best, telling the story of a masked killer who brutally murders models in a fashion house in Rome.
Known as the ‘Master of Italian Horror’, if you fancy an education in movie history this weekend, there are few better films to go for.
9. Dodgeball (2004) – Amazon Prime – Available now
A comedy favourite of the early noughties, Dodgeball directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber, is an all-star romp that illustrates the joyful silliness of the genre at the turn of the new millennium. Telling the story of a group of rag-tag gym-goers who enter a dodgeball tournament to save their local facilities, the film brings together the talents of Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Rip Torn, Christine Taylor, Jason Bateman and Hank Azaria.
An absolute joyride of fun, the film is also full of some perfectly outdated cameos, including Chuck Norris as a dodgeball judge and even Lance Armstrong who gives an ironic speech about never giving up, no matter what.
8. While We’re Young (2014) – MUBI – July 10th
Filmmaker Noah Baumbach is hot property right now, with the release of the forthcoming Barbie movie, co-written by him and Greta Gerwig, sure to draw significant attention from fans and critics in 2023. Like Gerwig, however, Baumbach’s back-catalogue is pretty remarkable too, with his recent 2014 movie, While We’re Young proving to be a charming rom-com about the struggles of growing up in the midst of middle age.
With a loveable cast that includes Ben Stiller, Adam Driver, Naomi Watts and Amanda Seyfried, While We’re Young is as much a thoughtful drama as it is a tickling comedy.
7. Dangerous Liaisons (1988) – Netflix – July 8th
A fiery romance with a shining Hollywood cast, Dangerous Liaisons is a period drama based on the play by Christopher Hampton that follows a scheming widow and her manipulative ex-lover who make a deceitful bet. Whilst Glenn Close and John Malkovich lead the line as the protagonists of the tale, they are joined by a fantastic supporting cast that includes Michelle Pfeiffer, Keanu Reeves, Uma Thurman and Peter Capaldi.
Inspiring countless period dramas in the 1990s and modern era, make sure you check out this classic movie, particularly if you’re a fan of the Netflix series The Crown.
6. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) – Amazon Prime – July 4th
There are few horror films quite as good as Tobe Hooper’s iconic Texas Chain Saw Massacre, a film that continues to inspire the genre to this very day, almost half a century since its release. Framed as a true story upon its release in the mid-1970s, despite its near-complete fiction, the film follows two siblings and three of their friends who fall victim to Leatherface and his cannibalistic family after venturing into the baron Texas countryside.
Captured on a budget 16mm camera with fine grain, Hooper’s film manages to acquire a suffocating tone, documenting a living nightmare of raw, brutal authenticity.
5. Vera Drake (2004) – BritBox – July 7th
Well-known as one of the finest British directors in the history of cinema, it is his 2004 movie Vera Drake, however, that is his most relevant to modern politics following the tragic overturning of the Roe v. Wade decision in America. The film itself follows a working-class abortionist living in 1950s London who tries to help the women of the community, despite her beliefs resulting in tragic consequences for her family.
Starring Imelda Staunton in the lead role, her incredible performance is bolstered by a supporting cast of characters played by the likes of Sally Hawkins, Phil Davis, Lesley Manville, Jim Broadbent and more.
4. Incantation (2022) – Netflix – July 8th
Diversifying their content for modern audiences, Netflix is releasing a brand new Taiwanese horror movie this week named Incantation, which judging by its compelling trailer, isn’t to be missed by any fan of the genre. Shrouded in mystery, the mockumentary horror story looks to follow a woman and her daughter who are trying to reverse a curse by solving a series of puzzles.
From director Kevin Ko, the filmmaker of Invitation Only, the exciting new horror film stars Hsuan-yen Tsai, Sean Lin, Ying-Hsuan Kao and Mohamed Elgendy.
3. The Sea Beast (2022) – Netflix – July 8th
Already being showered with praise by critics, The Sea Beast, by the director of Bolt, Big Hero 6 and Moana, tells the story of a young girl who hides away on the ship of a legendary monster hunter, sparking an epic adventure. Helmed by Chris Williams, the creative behind such aforementioned Disney movies, the script is co-written by himself and the debut feature film screenwriter Nell Benjamin.
Featuring an impressive voice cast that includes such names as Dan Stevens, Kathy Burke, Karl Urban, Zaris-Angel Hator and Jared Harris, Netflix’s latest movie could blow the likes of the new Minions film out of the water.
2. Black Bird: Season One (2022) – Apple TV+ – July 8th
Significant for starring the late Ray Liotta in his final television role, Black Bird from Apple TV+ tells the story of Jimmy Keene, a man sentenced to 10 years in prison before he cuts a deal with the FBI to befriend a serial killer and cut down his jail time. Featuring the Kingsman star Taron Egerton in an altogether different role, he features alongside Liotta, Greg Kinnear and Paul Walter Hauser.
Looking like a slick, sinister crime drama, Black Bird demonstrates Apple’s continued proficiency in acquiring the finest pieces of entertainment on the market.
1. This Much I Know to be True (2022) – MUBI – July 8th
We loved this Nick Cave documentary so much that we already covered it earlier this summer, giving the movie a glowing review. Exploring the creative relationship between Cave and Warren Ellis, the film tracks their process in delivering their last two studio albums ‘Ghosteen’ and ‘Carnage’. Seeing the collaboration of both these musical icons on screen is an utter joy to behold.
In our review from May, we stated: “Amid the chaotic movie, there is so much meaning that this seems to be the point of its shuffled synopsis—you find your own story within it. This is what Cave near enough remarks upon in a meta sense when he says that there is always meaning in people—that meaning is imperishable”.