Although the rewards season is already upon us, it certainly isn’t. Like so much else in 2020, Hollywood is undergoing a change. Even if you wanted to it might be hard to name 10 great movies that came off the top of your head this year. That said, 2020 hasn’t been a total loss for the big movies – as long as you know where to look. And if you want to look back even further (as any serious filmmaker should), you’ll find that there are a lot of movies you’ve probably overlooked in the past 20 years that are definitely worth revisiting. . They don’t all stream on major networks, but they can be rented from Amazon, Apple TV +, or YouTube. (We’ve included where you can get the streaming ones below.)
The big question, of course, is: what constitutes an “underrated” movie? For the sake of this list, we looked at movies that tanked at the box office (although they did earn a better reputation once they were available on video on demand), movies that seemed to invite quite a few. negative reviews and were worth giving a second chance, and movies that were well reviewed by critics and viewers, but never seemed to find an audience. With that in mind, here’s everything you need to catch up on your feet before you start your next 20 years of watching movies.
Ozark Star Julia Garner delivers a brilliantly subtle performance as Jane, an assistant recently hired by a major Hollywood actor. While most of her day involves monotonous tasks like answering the phone and replenishing the refrigerator’s water supply, it is in these trivialities that Jane – and the audience – begin to notice little details around the desk that suggest that not everything that happens in camera is appropriate. Garner’s performance, paired with the film’s low-key approach to the frantic objectification of the film industry and outright abuse of women, are what make Assistant so effective. Writer / Director Kitty Green (Casting JonBenét) trusts his audience to read between the lines and understand that this is a timely version of Hollywood’s Harvey Weinsteins. While Assistant received good reviews almost everywhere, the film didn’t have much of a theatrical release (and only grossed $ 1 million). Hope that can change now that it’s streaming.
Where to broadcast it: Hulu
Lena (Natalie Portman) is a cell biologist whose husband Green Beret Kane (Oscar Isaac) suddenly shows up at the house a year after being dispatched by the government to scan a notorious anomalous area “The Shimmer”. Kane has no memory of where he was or how he came back. As her condition deteriorates, Lena is called on a mission to explore The Shimmer on her own. But when she and her team arrive, strange things start to happen and it becomes clear that not everyone will make it out alive. While Annihilation was received fairly well by critics, it was quite polarizing among audiences, and it’s almost easy to see why. The film was written and directed by Alex Garland, the man behind Ex-Machina (2014) and this year’s FX miniseries Developers—Both projects that mix science fiction themes with deep philosophical questions. Annihilation is no different, and will have you thinking about life, death and the nature of mankind itself for days.