The best movies new to streaming this July (2024)

July is finally here, and the release calendar for summer movies is really heating up! We’ve got Longlegs, Twisters, and to look forward to, not to mention all the exciting recent releases coming to streaming and VOD this month, like Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, The Bikeriders, Thelma, and more! If you’re looking for some great flicks to watch from the comfort of your own home in between this month’s biggest releases, though, we’ve got you. We’ve pulled together the best movies new to Netflix, Hulu, Max, and more this July for you to stream.

This month, we’ve got a stone-cold Steven Soderbergh classic starring George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez, the new animated fantasy from Studio Ghibli successor Studio Ponoc, a sci-fi manga adaptation about a doe-eyed cyborg from Robert Rodriguez, and a whole lot more.

Here are the movies new to streaming services you should watch this month.

Editor’s pick: Out of Sight

The best movies new to streaming this July (1) Image: Universal Pictures Home Entertainment

Where to watch: Criterion Channel
Genre: Crime comedy
Director: Steven Soderbergh

Jennifer Lopez has attempted a bit of a movie star comeback over the past few years. After her critically acclaimed turn as resident den mother Ramona Vega in Hustlers, Lopez has starred in bad rom-coms (Marry Me, Shotgun Wedding), bad action movies (The Mother, Atlas), and bad bizarre vanity projects (This Is Me... Now: A Love Story). We have to go back to when Lopez was a legitimate movie star. We have to go back to Out of Sight.

Undoubtedly the sexiest movie in Steven Soderbergh’s oeuvre, Out of Sight adapts an excellent Elmore Leonard novel (as if there is any other kind) about Jack Foley, a career bank robber (George Clooney), and U.S. Marshal Karen Sisco (Lopez). After Foley breaks out of jail, the two share a moment and an instant connection, and the rest of the movie follows their cat-and-mouse game as she chases him for work and they chase each other for pleasure.

Clooney and Lopez’s chemistry is absolutely scintillating, and it’s a master class in putting two extremely attractive, charismatic people on screen and letting them do their thing. Out of Sight also has great supporting players for them, too — Ving Rhames, Don Cheadle, Steve Zahn, Luis Guzmán, Nancy Allen, Viola Davis, and even cameos from Michael Keaton and Samuel L. Jackson. This was the first of many collaborations between Clooney and Soderbergh, and a high point in Lopez’s film career that has yet to be matched. —Pete Volk

New on Netflix

The Imaginary

The best movies new to streaming this July (2) Image: Studio Ponoc/Netflix

Genre: Fantasy
Director: Yoshiyuki Momose
Cast: Kokoro Terada, Rio Suzuki, Sakura Ando

Studio Ponoc, the Japanese anime production company formed by Studio Ghibli veteran Yoshiaki Nishimura (producer of When Marnie Was There and The Tale of the Princess Kaguya), returns to full-length feature filmmaking for the first time since 2017 with the fantasy adventure The Imaginary. It’s the third major film this year about imaginary friends, and easily the best of them. Its lyrical playtime sequences loosely tap into Calvin & Hobbes energy, as imaginary friend Rudger and his creator, a young girl named Amanda, go soaring through her imagination.

But it also has a bit of a Toy Story 2/Inside Out vibe, as Rudger gets angsty over what happens to him when Amanda grows up and forgets him — and then winds up having to navigate existence without her earlier than he expected. It’s filmmaking in the Ghibli mode, with one major exception — a villain with a real sense of menace to go with his sunny smirking disposition. More for kids than adults, but a great one for generations to watch together, and worth noting for fans of expansive anime visual showcases. —Tasha Robinson

New on Hulu

Alita: Battle Angel

The best movies new to streaming this July (3) Image: 20th Century Fox

Genre: Sci-fi action
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Cast: Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly

I know Alita: Battle Angel became a bit of a meme, but I’m here to tell you it unironically rules and is an absolute joy to watch. The Robert Rodriguez-directed adaptation of the hit manga takes place in the year 2563, in the run-down, crime-ridden slums of the last known city on Earth. Meanwhile, the social elite live safe and pampered in a floating city that hovers above the surface of the planet, separating them from the less fortunate citizens below. The movie follows an amnesiac cyborg named Alita who has incredible powers, and fights to defy the underlings of the fascist government that prey on the people trapped on Earth.

But beyond all that plot, Alita’s just a terrifically enjoyable movie. There are killer action set-pieces, weird vibey CGI that makes it look like a unique hybrid of live action and cartoon, and a super dangerous in-universe sport that’s basically Rollerball. It’s a bizarre, messy combination that doesn’t really make the most of its source material, but does make for a fascinating action blockbuster that’s weirder than any big-budget movie released since, and it’s well worth your time. —Austen Goslin

New on Max

Twister

The best movies new to streaming this July (4) Image: Warner Home Video

Genre: Disaster thriller
Director: Jan de Bont
Cast: Helen Hunt, Bill Paxton, Jami Gertz

There’s no easier way to date a film than by making cutting-edge special effects its primary selling point, but sometimes it works out. Upon its 1996 release, Twister’s dedication to realistically rendering one of the most terrifying weather events on the planet was all anyone talked about, to the point that a few years later Universal Studios opened a “ride” meant to impress upon guests how well nature’s fury can be replicated.

To its credit: Twister still looks great. But it feels great too. Director Jan de Bont spent much of the late ’90s swapping scripts with Steven Spielberg, and while Twister lacks the sort of richness Spielberg is known for, there’s still plenty of heart. Yeah, the main attraction is a bunch of computer-generated tornadoes, but the film’s ragtag group of weirdo storm chasers is what keeps you, and the emotional spine of former partners (played by Helen Hunt and Bill Paxton) realizing they do not want to go through with their divorce gives the spectacle just enough heart, too. A sequel is around the corner, so now’s a great time to catch up with a ’90s classic. —Joshua Rivera

New on Prime Video

Evil Dead Rise

The best movies new to streaming this July (5) Image: Warner Bros. Pictures

Genre: Supernatural horror
Director: Lee Cronin
Cast: Lily Sullivan, Alyssa Sutherland, Morgan Davies

Did you enjoy The Last of Us Part 2? If your answer is anything close to “yes,” I got another question: Did you “enjoy” the boss fight with the Rat King Infected in the Seattle hospital basem*nt? If you did, then I have some good news for you: The climax of Lee Cronin’s stand-alone sequel to Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead franchise has a confrontation on par with that one that’s just as intense, gnarly, and utterly horrifying. For anyone else, Evil Dead Rise is still a wickedly gory and satisfying horror film worth experiencing.

The film centers on Beth, the estranged sister of a struggling mother of three, who is forced to defend her nieces’ and nephew’s lives from her sister after she’s possessed by a malevolent spirit. Evil Dead Rise drips with as much atmosphere and tension as it does blood and bile, with gripping camera work and sickening practical special effects that’ll stick with you long after the credits roll. —Toussaint Egan

New on Kanopy

Anatomy of a Fall

The best movies new to streaming this July (6) Image: Neon

Genre: Legal drama
Director: Justine Triet
Cast: Sandra Hüller, Swann Arlaud, Milo Machado-Graner

One of 2023’s most-discussed movies didn’t make a huge splash at the box office, but it lingered in theaters for months, quietly building a reputation on word of mouth alone, while racking up awards and placements on year-end Best of 2023 lists. Justine Triet’s Anatomy of a Fall starts with what seems like a straightforward thriller premise — a famous author (Sandra Hüller) loses her husband when he falls from a window, and is later accused of murdering him. But the film winds up being a complicated window into the nuances of relationships, with plenty of juicy ambiguities and reveals worth discussing. It’s been widely compared to a Hitchco*ck thriller, but it’s both slower and more thoughtful than his work, adding layer after layer to the story as Triet gives viewers plenty to argue about. —Tasha Robinson

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