Summer is very much underway but that doesn’t mean things have slowed down one bit in terms of new titles to watch. If anything, we can’t believe the number of summer movies on the horizon. You’ve been waiting quite some time to watch some of these films. Also, as we did with the June calendar of releases, we’re including new series, returning ones, films to watch at home as well as movies you can only see in theaters.
Here are the titles we’re most excited about in July of 2021.
July’s Many Releases on Netflix
Fear Street Trilogy (July 2, 9 and 16 ): This horror trilogy, which premieres over three consecutive Fridays, is set in Shadyside, a town haunted for generations. Part One is set in 1994, Part Two in 1978 and Part Three in 1666. In Part One a group of teenage friends discovers the ancient evil responsible for a series of murders that have plagued the town for centuries. The movies are based on R.L. Stine’s horror series Fear Street.
We the People (July 4): Set to original songs performed by H.E.R., Janelle Monáe, Lin Manuel-Miranda, Andra Day, Adam Lambert and poet Amanda Gorman, this animated series is produced by Barack and Michelle Obama and Kenya Barris (black-ish). The show consists of 10 three-minute music video episodes that cover basic U.S. civics lessons. Netflix describes the show as an “exuberant call to action for everyone to rethink civics as a living, breathing thing and to reframe their understanding of what government and citizenship mean in a modern world.”
Dogs (July 7): This documentary series for dog lovers is back with a four-episode second season that further explores humankind’s bond with our furry four-legged best friends. The new season explores the stories of an astronaut, a priest, a military contractor and the handler of a university mascot — and all of their doggie family members.
Gunpowder Milkshake (July 14), Netflix and select theaters: This action film stars Lena Headey (Game of Thrones) and Karen Gillan (Guardians of the Galaxy) as a mother-daughter duo of highly skilled assassins. If watching Headey in action mode post her Cersei Lannister’s days doesn’t sound enticing enough — and it should — let me add that Michelle Yeoh (Crazy Rich Asians), Angela Bassett (Strange Days) and Carla Gugino (San Andreas) round out the cast as the lethal (and sexy) Librarians.
The Last Letter from Your Lover (July 23): Based on the novel by Jojo Moyes, this movie starring Shailene Woodley and Felicity Jones interweaves two stories. Ellie (Jones) is a present-day London journalist who discovers a series of secret love letters from 1965. In them, Ellie uncovers the story of Jennifer (Woodley), the wife of a rich industrialist who fell in love with the journalist assigned to cover him.
Other Must-See TV on Streaming
The Beast Must Die (July 5), AMC+: Since the offerings from new streaming services never cease, here’s an AMC+ original starring Cush Jumbo (The Good Fight) and Jared Harris (Chernobyl). This six-part revenge thriller is based on a novel by Nicholas Blake. Jumbo plays Frances, a woman who poses as a novelist researcher to investigate and learn who was responsible for the death of her son Martie. She suspects George Rattery (Harris) and designs a plan to kill him. It’s still too early to know whether this show could bring AMC back some of its early-golden-age-of-TV glory, which was garnered with shows like Mad Men and Breaking Bad.
Monsters at Work (July 7), Disney+: This Pixar animated series is a sequel to Monsters, Inc. (2001) that follows the Monsters power plant the day they start harvesting children’s laughter instead of their screams to generate energy. Old favorites Mike (voice of Billy Crystal) and Sulley (voice of John Goodman) return alongside new characters like Tylor (voice of Ben Feldman), a recent graduate from Monsters University who must learn how to switch from Scarer to Jokester to succeed in his career.
The White Lotus (July 11), HBO: Shot on location in Hawaii, this six-episode limited series and social satire is set at an exclusive tropical resort. The show follows the staff and guests over a week as tensions start to arise and paradise starts looking less so. The ensemble cast consists of Murray Bartlett (Looking), Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights), Jennifer Coolidge (Promising Young Woman), Steve Zahn (Treme) and Alexandra Daddario (True Detective).
Turner & Hooch (July 21), Disney+: This 12-episode show stars Josh Peck as Scott Turner, a U.S. Marshal and son of Detective Scott Turner from the 1989 film of the same name with Tom Hanks. Scott inherits an unruly Dogue de Bordeaux dog who disrupts his life at first, but, of course, ends up being exactly the partner he needed all along.
Ted Lasso (July 23), Apple TV+: You may want to actually start paying for Apple TV+ to catch the second season of this workplace comedy set in London. Jason Sudeikis executive produces, writes and stars in this light-hearted story about a professional Premier League soccer coach, which is filled with jokes about cultural differences and the power of positive reinforcement. Thankfully you don’t need to know anything about football or even like the sport to enjoy the show.
2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics Opening Ceremony (July 23), NBC: You’ll only be able to watch the opening and closing ceremonies of the Tokyo Summer Olympics on NBC but the channel’s streaming service, Peacock, will offer highlights from both. Beginning July 24, Peacock will also air four live studio shows every day to catch viewers up on the must-see moments from the Olympic Games. And remember: you can subscribe to ad-supported Peacock for free.
Movies on Streaming
No Sudden Move (July 1), HBO Max: Set in 1954 Detroit, this Steven Soderbergh-directed film tells the story of a group of small-time criminals hired to steal a document. But when their calculated plan goes sideways, they need to figure out who hired them and why. The star-packed cast features Don Cheadle, Benicio Del Toro, David Harbour, Ray Liotta, Jon Hammer, Kieran Culkin, Noah Jupe and Amy Seimetz.
Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) (July 2), Hulu and theaters: This documentary directed by Questlove won both the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award at Sundance Film Festival. During the span of six weeks in the summer of 1969, The Harlem Cultural Festival was filmed but the footage remained unseen — until now. The movie features that footage along with concert performances by Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, Sly & the Family Stone, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Mahalia Jackson, B.B. King, The 5th Dimension and more.
The Tomorrow War (July 2), Amazon Prime: Initially planned for a theatrical release, Chris Pratt stars here as Dan Forester, a high school teacher and dad who decides to try to save the world. A group of time travelers arrive from 2051 to warn humanity about a war against an alien species, and they need soldiers and civilians from the present to go to the future and fight with them. Dan will be among those who get recruited.
Black Widow (July 9), Disney+ with Premier Access and theaters: The wait is finally over for the first Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) film to be released in two years after Spider-Man: Far From Home debuted in July of 2019. Scarlett Johansson reprises her role as Natasha Romanoff in this story set after the events of Captain America: Civil War (2016). Florence Pugh, David Harbour and Rachel Weisz also star in this first film of the MCU’s Phase Four.
Space Jam: A New Legacy (July 16), HBO Max and theaters: LeBron James stars alongside a bunch of Looney Tunes in this animated/live-action movie and stand-alone sequel to 1996’s Space Jam. The movie sees LeBron and his young son Dom (Cedric Joe) trapped by an A.I. system in a digital space. To free themselves, the basketball player will have to lead Bugs Bunny, Lola Bunny and the other Tunes against a group of digital versions of professional basketball stars.
Jungle Cruise (July 30) Disney+ with Premier Access and theaters: Catalan filmmaker Jaume Collet-Serra directs this adventure film for the whole family, which stars Emily Blunt as the researcher Dr. Lily Houghton. She travels from London to the Amazon and hires Frank (Dwayne Johnson) to guide her downriver on his boat. Her goal is to uncover an ancient tree with healing abilities before someone nefarious gets their hands on it. Expect solid comic performances from Johnson and Blunt.
And a Few Movies You’ll Only Be Able to Watch in Theaters
Old (July 23): Directed and produced by M. Night Shyamalan, and adapted from the graphic novel Sandcastle by Pierre Oscar Lévy and Frederik Peeter, this psychological thriller tells the story of a vacationing family. Relaxation time turns into something else entirely when they discover that the beach they chose is causing them to age rapidly, reducing their lives into a single day. The cast includes Gael García Bernal (Mozart in the Jungle), Vicky Krieps (Phantom Thread), Rufus Sewell (The Man in the High Castle), Ken Leung (Star Wars: Episode VII—The Force Awakens), Eliza Scanlen (Little Women) and Thomasin McKenzie (Jojo Rabbit).
Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origin (July 23): Henry Golding (Crazy Rich Asians) stars as the titular character. He learns the ways of the ninja warriors after saving the heir of a Japanese clan called the Arashikage and finding a home amongst them. But as his past is revealed, his honor will be questioned. The movie is based on Hasbro’s toy and media franchise and also stars Andrew Koji (Warrior), Úrsula Corberó (Money Heist) and Samara Weaving (Bill & Ted Face the Music).
The Green Knight (July 30): This fantasy adventure film is based on the legend of King Arthur and the knights of the round table. Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire) stars as Sir Gawain, King Arthur’s nephew. He embarks on a hero’s journey in a quest to confront the titular Green Knight.