Happy August, and welcome to the end of summer vacation. Pull up a couch cushion and grab some popcorn to stream excellent new and classic movies and TV shows on The Roku Channel, Netflix, and Amazon Prime Video.
Highlights this month include the Coen brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis, the documentary Amy, season 3 of GLOW and season 2 of Mindhunter, The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, and the new original series, Carnival Row.
Now on The Roku Channel
The Roku Channel is available for free on any Roku device or Roku Television, like the TCL 4K 50″ Smart LED TV, and gives you access to stream movies and TV shows for without a subscription. Here are some of my favourite highlights that are available this month.
Inside Llewyn Davis – Joel and Ethan Coen directed this incredible drama about an aspiring singer-songwriter trying to make it during the 1960s folk-music scene in New York City’s Greenwich Village. The film stars Oscar Isaac as Llewyn Davis, with Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan, and Adam Driver, and features superb performances all around in this meticulously-set period film. On top of everything else, the film has a soundtrack that is frankly perfect.
Boyhood – Richard Linklater’s Boyhood is a film like few others. Filmed over 12 years with the same cast, the story is told through the eyes of Mason, who ages from 6-18 years old. Ellar Coltrane stars as Mason, while Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette play his parents, and it’s amazing to see the breadth of the storytelling in this incredible film that’s hard to sum up.
Celeste and Jesse Forever – SNL’s Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg star in this romantic comedy about longtime sweethearts, Celeste and Jesse, who married young, but are drifting apart. The two are so different that Celeste decides she wants a divorce, but she also still wants to stay friends. The catch? She soon realizes that she may be making a big mistake. The film is fun, and sweet, and warm, with fantastic chemistry between Jones and Samberg.
Amy – Director Asif Kapadia’s Amy is an essential documentary that looks at one of the saddest deaths in recent music history: Amy Winehouse. The singer was one of music’s most promising artists, and this documentary looks at her life, trials, and tribulations leading up to her death in 2011. The film is heartbreaking, and incredibly moving whether you were a fan of the artist or not.
Naked City – This is classic film noir, with two detectives investigating a suspected suicide that turns out to be murder. Set in 1940s New York City, the film is an old-school thriller that feels like the perfect segue from summer into fall.
New to Netflix
The biggest new arrival on Netflix this month is Glow, season 3, one of the best original shows on the service, that offers a lot more character development and deeper stories this season for the incredible cast that includes Marc Maron, Betty Gilpin, Geena Davis, and Alison Brie to name a few. Taking the show to Las Vegas this season, the group struggles with sexual tension and shifting priorities that may rip them apart.
New arrivals out this month already on Netflix include The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Mummy starring Tom Cruise, Training Day, Overlord, and Dunkirk.
Netflix originals arriving this month include season 2 of Mindhunter on August 16, with the Behavioral Science Unit’s killer instincts moving into action to hunt for a serial child murderer.
Volume 3 of Dear White People has the students of Winchester taking on new creative challenges, and romantic possibilities, as a charismatic professor shakes up life on campus.
Plus, season 3 of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power is out now, and arriving soon, watch for Bridget Jones’s Diary and Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory on August 15, and Blade Runner 2049 on August 26.
Finally, head to Netflix on August 30 for The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, a return to the world of Jim Henson’s Thra where three Gelflings discover a horrifying secret that lies behind the Skeksis’ power, setting off an epic journey, and rebellion, to save their world.
Coming to Amazon Prime Video
This month, Amazon Prime Video has a huge lineup of new and classic films and television, including 1408, Animal Kingdom, Balls of Fury, Destroyer, For a Good Time, Call, Ghost in the Shell, the series Hell’s Kitchen, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Motorcycle Diaries, Queer as Folk (1999-2000), Sammy David Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me, Seven Psychopaths, and Ultraviolet, with At Eternity’s Gate arriving on August 31.
Plus, watch Pearson season 1 starting on August 19 with StackTV, season 6 of Power on August 25, and The Big Lebowski on August 30, both on Starz.
Finally, Carnival Row arrives on Amazon August 30, and stars Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne in a Victorian fantasy world filled with mythological immigrant creatures. Feared by humans, they are forbidden to live, love, or fly with freedom. But even in darkness, hope lives, as a human detective and a faerie rekindle a dangerous affair. The city’s uneasy peace collapses when a string of murders reveals a monster no one could imagine.