Some epic films we found in the mix on Paramount Plus for your next watch
With an ever-growing variety of streaming services blooming across the globe, sometimes it’s difficult to know exactly where to find the right movies to satisfy our constant hunger for escapism.
But fear not! With the recent launch of Paramount Plus here in Australia, we’ve been gifted with a fresh batch of movies to fix those never-ending cravings and to get you pumped, we’ve selected nine titles to start your new love affair with the platform.
Eyes Wide Shut
An erotic mystery that uses the politics of marriage to explore the nature of curiosity and desire, ‘Eyes Wide Shut’ is nothing short of a dreamlike masterpiece that found director Stanley Kubrick at the height of his craft before sadly passing in 1999.
In retrospect, the film is even more fascinating to watch for the simple fact that it used the real-life relationship of Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise to portray a couple whose marriage is put to the test after a dark secret is revealed.
It’s an elegantly crafted experience that blurs the lines between fantasy and reality with such precision, it’s virtually impossible not to be mesmerised from the first frame until the last.
Cast: Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Sydney Pollack and more
The Color Purple
The Color Purple is another gleaming example of why Steven Spielberg isn’t just one of the greatest filmmakers to walk the earth, but also one of the most versatile.
Bolstered by the thematic weight of Alice Walker’s heartbreaking novel about an African-American woman who was forced to endure a lifetime of domestic abuse, Spielberg’s radiant and sensitively handled direction transforms the source material into an emotionally rich tale and Goldberg’s powerful performance as Cecile will be sure to have you reaching for tissues before the credits roll.
Cast: Oprah Winfrey, Whoopi Goldberg, Danny Glover and more
Some say never mix business with pleasure, but Paul Thomas Anderson’s ultra-stylish Boogie Nights begs to differ.
Set in 1977, Jack Horner (Burt Reynolds) is an ambitious producer in the American porn industry who’s itching to take his art to the next level. After crossing paths with a busboy named Eddie (Mark Wahlberg), Horner sees a lucrative opportunity and wastes no time in turning the young man into an international celebrity overnight, but as the temptations of disco, recreational drug use and a newfound sense of stardom begin to take over, Eddie realises that the power of fame comes at a price.
Now if that story hasn’t already caught your attention, then its retro aesthetics will win you over in a heartbeat, that we can be sure of.
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Burt Reynolds, Julianne Moore and more
American History X
After serving three years in prison for leading a white supremacist group that were responsible for a string of unfathomable crimes, Derek Vineyard (Edward Norton) finally has a chance to make amends with the past.
In an attempt to keep his younger brother from going down the same violent road, Derek does everything he can to disconnect himself from the gang, but his road to redemption proves to be easier said than done. Tony Kane’s unrelenting crime drama pulls no punches and somehow manages to balance a difficult story with a searing social commentary and an unexpected amount of heart.
More importantly, it’s the kind of film that reminds us of how effective cinema is at exploring the past when it shows how often history can, unfortunately, repeat itself in the present day.
Cast: Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Fairuza Balk and more
World War Z
Perhaps a little too close-to-home considering the current state of our world, nevertheless, Marc Forster’s ‘World War Z’ still serves as a solid entry from the viral-outbreak subgenre and features some mind-blowing, horror-fuelled action perfect for a Sunday night outing.
Brad Pitt takes the helm as Gerry Lane, an ex-United Nations investigator whose life is quickly turned upside down when a mysterious disease starts turning entire populations into flesh-eating zombies. The story might not exactly sound unique, but Pitt is always fun to watch and the film is executed with enough adrenaline to keep us distracted from its minor downfalls.
Cast: Brad Pitt, Mireille Enos, Daniella Kertesz and more
Nightmare On Elm Street
As the most celebrated horror film of 1984 that also saw the birth of one of the genre’s most iconic villains, it’s understandable that Wes Craven’s no-sleep slasher still has the reputation that it does.
Like lambs to the slaughter, we see a group of teenagers get hunted down in their dreams by a serial killer with knives for fingers – pretty cool, huh? Even so, it’s not so much the creepy plot that’s the hook here, but the creative style in which Craven directed the hell out of it.
From the imaginative dream sequences with unforgettable kills that are also matched with a diabolical soundtrack, to Robert Englund’s career-defining performance as the notorious Freddy Kruger, Elm Street is worth losing sleep over for at least one night.
Cast: Robert Englund, Johnny Depp, John Saxon and more
If you’ve got an evening to spare and have never seen Francis Ford Coppola’s award-winning masterpiece…well, this is your chance.
It’s all too rare that we come across films that hold up so well almost fifty years after being officially released, but ‘The Godfather’ is one of those exceptions that cannot be challenged on both a thematic and technical level. With its multi-layered narrative, complex characters who are brought to life by some of the best actors in the biz and the most stunning cinematography ever captured in a Hollywood crime drama, this is an epic mafia movie of the highest calibre and demands to be seen.
Cast: Al Pacino, Marlon Brando, Diane Keaton and more
Best In Show
Master of the ‘mockumentary’ Christopher Guest has always had a knack for cinematic awkwardness and Best in Show arguably wins first place for more reasons than you could count on a set of fingers…or paws, in this case.
We follow the daily lives of five contestants preparing for a prestigious Dog Show in Philadelphia and it’s totally jam-packed with sharp humour by a cast who are very in-tune with how Guest likes his improvisational skits to unfold. Think about it – if you put Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara and Parker Posey into a room with some K9s, comical sparks are bound to fly.
Cast: Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy, Fred Willard and more
Rock Of Ages
A surprisingly fresh pop-rock bonanza that serves up a smorgasbord of musical treats plucked from the 80’s and 90’s with a modern polish.
Whatever the movie might lack in terms of originality it makes up for with its gleeful and inspired performances (including some unexpected highlights from Tom Cruise and Alec Baldwin) and playful energy that’s admittedly quite addictive.
With Spielberg’s ‘West Side Story’ and Chbosky’s ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ set for release in the not too distant horizon, Rock of Ages is just the kind of zany palette-cleanser we need before those big players come to town.
Cast: Julianne Hough, Tom Cruise, Diego Boneta and more
Watch now on Paramount Plus
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