Embark on an Epic Movie Marathon: Top 39 Must-Watch Films on Apple TV Plus!


| LAST UPDATE 07/25/2023

By Scarlett Adler
Best Movies On Apple TV Plus
MacFormat Magazine / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

Some might disagree, but we think Apple TV+ is a real contender in the online streaming industry. With fewer originals and production rights, you might wonder – how? It was strange to us when we thought of it, but when we watched some of the movies on Apple TV Plus, we knew we were wrong - we just needed to find the proof. Apple TV+ has also managed to rope in stars like Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand. So we decided to take the plunge to find out what movies are on Apple TV+ that give it its acclaim. And boy, were we happy to find our proof!

We’ve pored through them all, and this list of the best movies on Apple TV Plus was born. Safe to say, the tech giant has more to offer when it comes to entertainment. After checking out our list, we’re sure you’ll think so. Happy streaming!

Ghosted (2023)

Directed by the talented Dexter Fletcher, Ghosted is a must-watch film that stars the amazing Chris Evans and Ana de Armas as lead characters Cole and Sadie. In this film, Cole goes on a first date with Sadie, but soon after, she seems to be ignoring him.

 Chris Evans
Taylor Hill / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

In his quest to figure out why, Cole discovers that Sadie is actually a CIA operative, which completely changes the game and takes the film to a whole new level of excitement. With a mix of romance, action, and thrills, Ghosted is sure to be a movie that will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.

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Spirited (2022)

Get ready to deck the halls and jingle all the way with Spirited, the newest addition to your holiday watchlist. Starring the hilarious Ryan Reynolds and Will Ferrell, this musical retelling of A Christmas Carol is sure to have you feeling the spirit of the season. Reynolds plays Clint Briggs, a man unexpectedly visited by the jovial spirit of Christmas Present, played by Ferrell.

 Ryan Reynolds attends Apple Original Film
Cindy Ord / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

As the two embark on a wild adventure, expect a heartwarming story with a healthy dose of laughs and dance numbers to keep you entertained. With its star-studded cast and magical atmosphere, Spirited promises to deliver the holiday cheer we all need this year. Grab some hot cocoa and get ready to sing along!

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Tetris (2023)

For those of us who grew up with video games, Tetris is more than just a classic game – it's practically a cultural phenomenon. Yet few of us know about the man behind this addictive puzzle game, Henk Rogers. Fortunately, that's about to change. In Jon S. Baird's upcoming biopic, we'll get to see Taron Egerton bring Rogers to life on the big screen.

Frazer Harrison / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

And honestly, I can't wait to see how he interprets the Dutch video game designer's story, which involved more legal battles and logistical challenges than most of us will face in a lifetime. With Noah Pink's script providing the backbone of the movie, it promises to be an engaging and thought-provoking look at one of the most iconic games of the past century.

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Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie (2023)

For those who grew up watching Michael J. Fox on the big and small screens, the documentary Still is an absolute must-see. Director-producer Davis Guggenheim masterfully weaves together archival footage, personal interviews, and cinematic elements to create a comprehensive look at the life and career of this beloved actor.

Michael J Fox
Via gettyimages.com

Fox's journey from a skinny Army recruit to a Hollywood sensation is chronicled with care and detail, giving insight into how he became the iconic figure that he is today. Through Still, viewers young and old can learn more about the man behind the roles and appreciate the impact that he has had on the entertainment industry.

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Sharper (2023)

Max, a young man born into a wealthy New York City family who can’t seem to get his kin to recognize him for who he is, takes matters into his own hands by carrying out one of the most devilish schemes one can conjure - conning the billionaires in and around the five boroughs.

Briana Middleton, Julianne Moore, Benjamin Caron and Justice Smith (Photo by Dave J. Hogan/Getty Images)

Directed by Benjamin Caron (The Crown), Sharper stars Sebastian Stan as Max, with Julianne Moore co-starring and producing. This riveting heist film will captivate audiences with its clever plot, inspired by classic caper flicks like The Usual Suspects and The Sting.

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The Descendants (2011)

George Clooney gives one of his best performances in Alexander Payne's The Descendants, a film in the paradise of Hawaii. Despite its setting, this comedy is so much more than a pleasant good time - it portrays a man learning to accept his better feelings and having a happy ending.

The Descendants
George Clooney (Photo by Stefania D'Alessandro/WireImage)

Co-written by Payne, who was previously acclaimed for his work on "Sideways" (2004) and "About Schmidt" (2002), The Descendants is sure to engage viewers with its gripping story.

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Raymond & Ray (2022)

Raymond & Ray offers a sober and emotionally complex look into the lives of two estranged half-brothers, Raymond and Ray, as they take on one last task for their late father. Viewers watch as the legendary Ethan Hawke and Ewan McGregor attempt to grapple with the difficult situation of not only saying goodbye to a loved one but also fulfilling their father's dying wish to have them dig his grave.

Raymond & Ray
Ewan McGregor (L) and Ethan Hawke (Photo by VALERIE MACON / AFP)

Laden with poignant dialogue, the brothers muse on some of life’s most challenging questions—why we love, what our purpose is, and how we can adequately thank those who have shaped our lives. In its unique exploration of one family's farewell, the movie reflects on loss and the power of familial bonds in times of chaos and confusion.

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The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse (2022)

The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse is an upcoming animated short film adaptation of Charlie Mackesy's novel. Directed by Peter Baynton and Charlie Macksey, written by Jon Croker and featuring prominent talents such as Jude Coward Nicoll, Gabriel Byrne, Idris Elba, and Tom Hollander voicing the titular characters, this animated drama centers around a group of friends in search for humanity, empathy and kindness as they form a bond in the wilderness on a spring day.

Charlie Mackesy
Charlie Mackesy (Photo by Aaron Chown/PA Images via Getty Images)

Plans to adapt The Boy, the Mole, The Fox and The Horse were announced after it earned immense success as a bestselling novel in early 2020. Cara Speller and producer Matthew Freud acquired rights to move along with an adaptation under their banner NoneMore Productions.

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Beastie Boys Story (2020)

Beastie Boys Story is a documentary film directed by Spike Jonze that tells the story of the legendary hip-hop group Beastie Boys. The film, available on Apple TV+, is an intimate and personal look at the band's journey, featuring never-before-seen footage and exclusive interviews with the group's surviving members, Mike Diamond and Adam Horovitz.

Beastie Boys Story
Beastie Boys (Photo by Lester Cohen/WireImage)

The film received widespread critical acclaim for its unique storytelling style and its ability to capture the energy and spirit of the Beastie Boys. If you're a fan of the band or a lover of music documentaries, "Beastie Boys Story" is a must-watch movie on Apple TV+.

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Causeway (2022)

Jennifer Lawrence delivers her career’s finest performance to date as Lynsey, the main protagonist of Causeway. A war veteran trying to adjust to civilian life, she takes up a job cleaning pools in her hometown of New Orleans but never expects to return to her childhood home.

Jennifer Lawrence
Stephane Cardinale - Corbis / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

In her struggles, she finds a friend in James, who is also trying to figure out his life after an accident. Causeway dives into what it feels like to experience trauma, and what it takes to climb out of that hole.

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Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me (2022)

Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me is raw and emotional, and even the worst critic cannot help but shed a tear. A celebrity of worldwide stature, Selena Gomez finds herself diagnosed with lupus, anxiety, and depression at the peak of her career. Unable to feel who she is, she falls into an abyss.

Selena Gomez My Mind and Me
Jon Kopaloff / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

But in her heart, she knows she has much more to give to the world and decides to rise to the center stage of her life. Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me is a journey about how she discovered herself again, and it’s a reminder that we are not alone in our struggles.

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Emancipation (2022)

A much-awaited movie headed by Will Smith, Emancipation tells the true story of Peter, a Black man who escaped his slave owners in Louisiana to fight for his freedom and that of his family. Will Smith’s enactment of the unbreakable Peter is complimented by the brutish, evil character of slave owner Fassel, played by Ben Foster.

Will Smith
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

Fassel is pure evil incarnate, and Ben Foster delivers a nightmarish, unforgettable performance here. A movie that reminds us about the dark history that the nation has, Emancipation is powerful and heavy. It will remain one of the best historical recollections depicted through a movie format.

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The Greatest Beer Run Ever (2022)

Everyone thinks Chickie Donohue is wasting his life away, and maybe he is. But one mission rings true to him – his support for his friends fighting the Vietnam war. In rebellion and outrageous support, he decides to fly to Vietnam and bring his fellow American soldiers a reminder of home – a can of American beer.

Zac Efron
Lisa Maree Williams / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

Based on a true story, The Greatest Beer Run Ever is a two-hour-long movie about a man who has never accepted the responsibility to become someone who sees the world as an adult, as he dives right into the middle of this controversial war.

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Luck (2022)

Sam Greenfield was created by the same studio that brought you Toy Story and Cars. She’s the unluckiest person you would ever want to meet. It's so bad that you would worry that it could be contagious. But she manages to get her hands on a lucky penny, which, as her luck would permit, she flushes down the toilet.

Gregg DeGuire / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

Following a chase sequence with a lucky black cat, she finds herself in the Land of Luck, where her presence threatens to break down the entire operation. And when it does happen, she makes it her mission to undo her bad luck. A great family movie that is simple to follow, Luck has a lot of charm and appeal.

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The Sky Is Everywhere (2022)

A certain magic comes out of this movie The Sky Is Everywhere, possibly due to the majestic presence of the redwood trees of Northern California. But this magic doesn’t help with the grief 17-year-old Leslie has over the loss of her older sister.

Pico Alexander
Walter McBride / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

But the entry of Joe Fontaine promises to change things for Leslie, even despite the complicated things happening in her life. Something is comforting about this movie’s excessive romanticism, and it’s a hit for the younger generations.

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Cha Cha Real Smooth (2022)

Cha Cha Real Smooth is nothing like you expect – which is Cooper Raiff’s directional prowess. This makes it all the more enjoyable, watching the cast's chemistry and how the entire movie plays out.

Cha Cha Real Smooth
Roy Rochlin / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

The movie follows the life of 22-year-old Andrew, who has an inborn talent to get the party started and his fuzzy and unclear relationship with Domino, a local mom. Trust us, you’re going to love this movie.

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9/11: Inside the President's War Room (2022)

Building on the events of September 11, 2001, 9/11: Inside the President’s War Room follows the environment around President Bush and his advisors, as they navigated through holding a country together after such a horrific accident. In a word, this movie is powerful, and an essential watch to etch the importance of this historical moment in US history.

911 Inside the President's War Room
The White House / Handout Via Gettyimages.com

We cannot say enough about this documentary – because it captures some of the tensest times America has gone through precisely like it was.

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Prehistoric Planet (2022)

Prehistoric Planet is a marvelous depiction of the world inhabited by ancient species before man's arrival. By combining top-notch filmmaking and the latest paleontology findings, the cherry on the top is David Attenborough narrating the facts of dinosaur life to us.

David Attenborough
Tim P. Whitby / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

According to us, this documentary is the best way to represent the exotic wildlife on this planet. The CGI interpretations are the crown achievements in the movie because of their perfection. This kind of show comes around once in a while, but when it does, you should not miss out on the chance to savor it.

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The Essex Serpent (2022)

Cora Seaborne, a Londoner who has just been widowed, decides to move to Essex after researching The Essex Serpent, a sea dragon rumored to devour people in the area. With a folk-like environment and the romantic threads that intertwine, this 19th-century drama with Claire Danes and Tom Hiddleston as the lead actors give us their best performances to date.

Claire Danes
Amy Sussman / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

We think this show is a little dark to be binge-able, but the storyline is captivating such that the characters will remain in your head even after turning off the TV.  

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Shining Girls (2022)

Kirby Mazrachi is a woman with a broken past who feels she fails to piece it together. As a newspaper archivist, she suddenly spots a pattern eerily similar to the attack that happened to her. After teaming up with the police, she discovers that her attacker may be again on the prowl.

Elisabeth Moss
Samir Hussein / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

But as her reality keeps shifting, she has to stay ahead to save the next woman who could be the next victim. Shining Girl has a writing team that did an outstanding job, and it is a terrific thriller to engage your time with.

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Slow Horses (2022)

Gary Oldman runs the Slough House – the division MI5 agents who have made career-damaging mistakes end up. Now, when such a bunch of misfits find themselves in the middle of a dangerous encounter between terrorists and MI5, what else would they do instead of jumping in to prove themselves?

Gary Oldman
Matt Winkelmeyer / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

Slow Horses is a satirical comedy that brings the failed-spy thriller sequences into the mix. The delicate juggling between the comedic and serious tones deserved appreciation, and Gary Oldman carries the show with his acting prowess. Overall, a fine show with a little too many twists.

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Greyhound (2020)

Based on the setting of World War II, we are taken through U.S. Navy Cmdr. Ernest Krause’s mission was to lead an Allied convoy across the Atlantic. Pursuing on their heels are German U-boats and this is Krause’s first wartime mission, but Krause’s patient performance soon turns this chase into the Battle of the Atlantic, the most extended, most complex naval battle in history.

Vittorio Zunino Celotto / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

During the 92 minutes of runtime, you’ll be hard-pressed to take your eyes off the screen, and Tom Hanks stardom is a large reason for this. Greyhound is possibly the best war movie to come out in recent history, with its strong focus on the values of leadership and team heroism.

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The Banker (2020)

The Banker is easily one of the top three of our favorite movies on Apple TV+, and we invite you to spend 15 minutes on this movie and see for yourself why. With the powerhouse of Anthony Mackie, Samuel L Jackson, Nicolas Hoult, and Nia Long.

The Banker
Michael Tran / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

The movie follows the true story of Bernard Garrett and Joe Morris, two Black entrepreneurs who devise a devilish plan to buy land in White-dominant properties and give it out to other folks of the Black community, to bring the American Dream to reality. Sounds interesting? This is just the cherry on the cake.

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The Elephant Queen (2018)

Chiwetel Ejiofor has always been an actor of a different class, but now we think he’s the contender for the voice of God, after Morgan Freeman. The Elephant Queen is a documentary about Athena, the female leader of the elephant herd, as she takes them through the harsh African landscape to a land that can provide much more for her herd.

Mark Deeble
Dave Kotinsky / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

The simplest goal that this movie achieves is to give us awe at the magnanimity of Nature, and the larger goal of making us aware of the slow death of Nature is met, albeit in a brooding manner.

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Billie Eilish: The World's a Little Blurry (2021)

Billie Eilish rose to fame rather quickly, even if she showcased the talent to back her rise as a global icon. Billie Eilsh: The World’s a Little Blurry is a deeply intimate look into her life and journey, and it’s a release, though uncomfortable at places, to our imagination of the easy life of a global superstar.

Billie Eilish The World's a Little Blurry
Koury Angelo / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

A star with 55 billion streams, Billie Eilish takes the rise to stardom with grace although she does hit her rough patches, and she welcomes us to explore these bumps with her. It is not easy to be a 17-year-old with 5 Grammy awards, and there’s a thing or two we can learn from Billie’s life.

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Boys State (2020)

Boy's State is a show that puts up a mirror in front of American society. The mirror reflects the prevalent electoral process's ruthlessness and victory-at-any-cost mentality. The show brings to light a future of American leadership through the vehicle of the Boy's State, an 1100-member party of teenage boys from all parts of Texas.

Amanda McBaine
Suzanne Cordeiro / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

We can't say whether this show will scare you or give you hope for the future. We can't say. But if nothing else, Boy's State is accurate to the point about the current electoral circus, and the characters' processes of self-discovery are sure to keep you hooked.

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Bruce Springsteen’s Letter to You (2020)

If you're a fan of rock music, you've heard of Bruce Springsteen's album Letter to You. This documentary offers a behind-the-scenes look into the making of the album, and if there were a perfect companion to any album, it would be this.

Bruce Springsteen’s Letter to You
Ilya S. Savenok / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

Bruce Springsteen’s experiences and thoughts about life are displayed when he recorded this album. And it offers viewers an illuminating insight into the life of a man who seemed to have it all but was looking for something all along...

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Wolfwalkers (2020)

Wolfwalkers is an adventure trip for our minds and a treat to our eyes. Robyn Goodfellow is a young hunter on a mission to wipe out the last wolf pack with his father. As they explore this magical world outside their city, Robyn becomes friends with Mebh, who has the power to transform into a wolf at night. Robyn finds out that Mebh is on a journey to save her missing mother and is drawn to this quest.

Ross Stewart
Hollywood Critics Association / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

This leads them both down the mysterious, enchanted path of the Wolfwalkers, which becomes the entire show's premise. Wolfwalkers has strange magic that draws us to it and keeps us watching, unable to break the spell. A fantasy show of this depth and warmth is hard to find, and we’re happy we didn’t miss out on this gem!

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Swan Song (2021)

Cameron, played by Mahershala Ali, is a man who has an all-loving wife and a happy family with a second baby on the way. But when a terminal illness strikes him out of the blue, he is given an alternative solution to replace himself with a carbon copy clone.

Mahershala Ali
Matt Winkelmeyer / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

What seems to be a good move to take care of his family becomes an emotional roller coaster for Cameron. However, he holds our hands through this journey to push his desires and sacrifices for his family to give them a happier life. Even if Swan Song is presented shortly, the movie promises we do not lose our humanity in a world of accelerated technological leaps.   

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Finch (2021)

Post-apocalyptic worlds offer a quiet that supplements character development in any show. Tom Hanks, playing the role of Finch, is a robotics engineer and one of the survivors of this world. But a decade underground Finch builds a robot to care for his dog Goodyear when he can no longer.

Alberto E. Rodriguez / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

As they venture out to explore the West, Finch tries to show Jeff the robot the joys of being alive, even in a world where humankind is almost completely exterminated. A sci-fi show with an immensely human depth, Finch finds a way to touch the humanity inside us - the part of us that craves to understand ourselves better.

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The Velvet Underground (2021)

It would be an understatement to say that the Velvet Underground is one of the iconic bands that defined the rock n’ roll genre. This documentary, visualized through the eyes of Todd Haynes, takes us back to the time when the band rose to popularity and soon became a cornerstone of American culture.

The Velvet Underground
Gijsbert Hanekroot / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

Pieced together with in-person interviews, never-before-seen performances, and recordings, this documentary on the controversial band is pure bliss for those who enjoy their music, making us feel closer to the band personally. We realize that the band was a mix of contradictions, but this gem will find common ground with both the music aficionados and the common people of their era.

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The Year Earth Changed (2021)

David Attenborough is a man who can transport us into a different world with his deep voice and soothing narration. The Year Earth Changed is a stark documentary about how Nature and her other creations found a way to bounce back from the insistent beatdowns by the human race during the lockdown. We were happy to see how our time indoors, fearing an invisible virus, allowed Nature to thrive.

The Year Earth Changed
Danny Martindale / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

It would not be far from the truth to say that Attenborough delivers his most powerful message through this documentary: perhaps humankind needed a pandemic to truly coexist with the other species on the planet.

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Come From Away (2021)

Come From Away is the cinematic representation of a story about 7000 people stuck in the tiny town of Gander on September 11, 2001. Originally performed as a Broadway musical and a receiver of the Academy Award, the show dives in to provide an insight into the American mind-space during 9/11.

Come From Away
Noam Galai / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

At a time when almost every topic of discussion can seem inflammatory, Come From Away finds us with empathy and invites us to be compassionate to one another through the medium of this charming, warm, marvelous story. Watch this show, and we promise you will walk away with a happier heart and a smile, despite the somber premise.

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Hala (2019)

The immigrant teenager's struggle is real, and Hala conveys this spectacularly. Hala, played by Geraldine Viswanathan, is a Pakistani American teenager who doesn’t have it easy. As she struggles to find a way to reconcile her family and their cultural and religious beliefs with her environment, we are taken into a mysterious world, hidden in plain sight, where Hala has to tread lightly.

Geraldine Viswanathan
Jemal Countess / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

Hala, at its core, is the story of every confused immigrant teenager in a foreign country and offers us the solace that they are never alone.

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On the Rocks (2020)

When we watched On The Rocks, we strongly felt that it could be a role model for romantic comedies that come after it. Suddenly unsure about her marriage, Laura decides to tail her husband - and who does she choose to accompany her? Her playboy father, Felix.

Rashida Jones
James Devaney / Contributor Via Gettyimages.com

While this show might sound predictable, we assure you that underneath the surface, there is a layer of complexity in the humor performed. Bill Murray and Rashida Jones have an onscreen chemistry that matches their roles of father and daughter trying to get to know each other better. The movie is a pleasure to watch, we can promise.

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CODA (2021)

CODA stands for something you might not have guessed – Child Of Deaf Adults. Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a CODA and the interpreter for her entire family. Born into a not-so-privileged family that fishes for a living, Ruby’s days start with helping on the fishing boat, rushing to school, and returning home again.

Mike Coppola / Staff Via Gettyimages.com

But when she joins the high school choir and discovers her innate talent for singing, she has to choose between being around her dependent family or pursuing her dreams. The movie is not flashy but rather a coming-of-age under unique circumstances that vow to linger in your heart for a while after you finish the film.

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The Tragedy of Macbeth (2021)

If this movie sounds dark and dim, you should feel excited knowing that this theme is delivered through the amazing performances of Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand - two stars of Hollywood. As the name suggests, The Tragedy of Macbeth is an adaptation of Macbeth through the vision of Joel Coen. If this cannot be called one of Joel Coen’s finest works, we don’t know what could be.

Jim Spellman / Stringer Via Gettyimages.com

The movie is beautiful, to say the least, with the cinematography paying homage to Shakespeare in the right order. We cannot recommend this movie enough, and though it is a dark movie of cunning deception and ambition, we would watch it again and again!

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