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The streaming world is a pretty big universe, with several major players that everyone knows and loves dominating the landscape. But there are a whole bunch of worthy providers that fly under the radar, with just as many old favorites and hidden gems waiting to be discovered as the major competition hauls in every month. Which is why I’d like to introduce you to a new friend of ours: Plex!
A freemium streaming service that offers both TV and movies for the viewing public, we’ve decided to partner with Plex in these current times to bring you a list of some of the best movies they have to offer to the public! And the best part is, these movies are absolutely free and available right this moment for you to enjoy. If you see something you like in this hand-picked list go check out Plex here in addition to their entire library (it's free after all!). In the meantime, here's a venerable grab bag of movies that’ll help keep you entertained right in the comfort of your own home.
Lars and the Real Girl
Present day Ryan Gosling is a heartthrob who straddles the line between indie favorites and big budget delights. But it wasn’t too long ago that this Canadian treasure was making his way through the movie world in roles like that of Lars and the Real Girl. With Gosling playing the eponymous man, who strikes up a relationship with a realistic looking sex doll he treats as an actual person. Mixing comedy with heartfelt drama, it’s a perfect reminder of how Ryan Gosling became as popular as he is today, as his acting talents are put to the test in this unconventional romance.
Stream Lars and the Real Girl here.
The Adventures Of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension
Cult sci-fi classics like The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across The 8th Dimension don’t stick in the minds of fans for no good reason. Following the musician/physicist/genius that gives the film part of its name, an absolutely brilliant lineup of talent that includes Peter Weller, Jeff Goldblum, John Lithgow and Ellen Barkin takes this sci-fi comedy into adventurous and amusing territory. With several attempts to follow up on this ‘80s classic starting and stopping over the years, the beauty of this wildly original sci-fi comedy has kept such hopes alive to this very day.
Stream The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension here.
A documentary on the faith-based Kids on Fire School of Ministry, Jesus Camp provides an in-depth look at children of religious conviction and their upbringing in such a value system. Some have decried the film as unfair, while others, including filmmakers Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady, feel it’s a balanced depiction of the lives of the kids taking part in this religious camp experience. As usual, the audience is left to judge for themselves, and you can do just that by watching Jesus Camp.
Stream Jesus Camp here.
Halloween is upon us, and we could all use a couple good scares in our lives right about now. Naturally, you can find the usual suspects out there in streaming land, but you might be one of those people who are looking for something off the beaten path. Should you be one of those folks, the bloody and disturbing indie horror film The Void will more than fit the bill, as it's about a small town that finds itself under siege by a secretive cult, and some extradimensional horror waiting to get into our world.
Stream The Void here.
Parody films used to only be able to poke fun of the movies that they loved, but eventually there came successes like Edgar Wright’s Cornetto Trilogy, where the genres that were mocked were also lovingly paid homage. The Michael Jai White-starring film Black Dynamite is another prime example of a movie that knows the formula of classics such as Shaft and Dolemite, and skewers it while playing straight to its strengths. You’ll get your fill of laughs and badass attitude, should you choose to light the fuse on this explosive action-comedy.
Stream Black Dynamite here.
The Perfect Host
It’s been a year that’s seen things as simple as dinner parties with random strangers doesn’t sound like that bad of an idea. But if you feel like you need a reminder of just why you should know who’s pouring your wine, let The Perfect Host remind you why a little extra thought should go into your next RSVP. When a thief on the run (Clayne Crawford) drops into the home of a mysterious man (David Hyde Pierce) in an attempt to evade the authorities, what looks like a solid getaway turns into a twisted night of drinks, games, and imagination all complicate this off-beat dark comedy.
Stream The Perfect Host here.
Before acclaimed director/Academy Award history-maker Bong Joon-ho broke the world with the genius that is Parasite, his filmography ushered in a memorable creature feature in a modern era that still hadn’t seen Godzilla rise again. The Host sees South Korea plagued by a vicious creature that was, surprise, created by a very human mistake. With the wit and tension you’d expect from a Bong Joon-ho film, The Host is definitely bound to scare you, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself charmed in the process. Just don't confuse this one with the Stephenie Meyer adaptation, or the recent Shudder horror hit, which both share very similar names.
Stream The Host here.
It’s a rare occasion when Morgan Freeman gets to play anything approaching a greedy villain. So when a movie comes along allowing him the opportunity, it’s something to pay attention to, like in the ‘90s big ticket thriller Hard Rain. Pitting Freeman against good guy Christian Slater, a flooded Indiana town provides the battleground for our fresh-faced hero to try and outwit a crew of some bad folks who just want to cash in on a natural disaster. It’s hard to find a Morgan Freeman bad guy movie, but it’s even harder to find a movie like Hard Rain these days, in a world where finding an obscure ‘90s adventure on streaming feels more like a rarity.
Stream Hard Rain here.
The story of “Red Riding Hood” is not anything new to the world of the movies. When your story has been adapted by the director of Twilight for a major motion picture, you’ve pretty much got it made. Yet Freeway still stands as one of the most unique, and definitely most adult, interpretations of that story. With Reese Witherspoon as a young runaway, and Kiefer Sutherland playing the menacing predator who has his sights on her, this version of the classic fairy tale is absolutely not for children. But if you’ve always wanted to see a version of Red’s adventures that involved firecracker dialogue, adult themes and healthy amounts of violence, look no further.
Stream Freeway here.
Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Sukiyabashi Jiro is one of the most legendary sushi restaurants, with only 10 seats, and a massive reputation to uphold. At the center of it all is the man who gives the restaurant, and the documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi its name, sushi master Jiro Ono. Portraying the man, his family, and the restaurant that binds them in a loving portrait, director David Gelb’s film is still a well beloved story of the artistry of food. Even more wild is the fact that Ono’s restaurant and its many delights were so impressive to Gelb, he altered what was supposed to be a general sushi documentary into a more intimate portrait of one family’s craft.
Stream Jiro Dreams of Sushi here.
Each of these picks we’ve just shared with you are available through the Plex library right now. And if you’re looking for something beyond those titles we’ve highlighted, there’s plenty more that awaits your perusal! So happy browsing, and don’t forget to stream responsibly, keeping in mind that all titles are subject to change and availability.