The 7 Best New Movies on Prime Video in May 2023
If you’re looking for something new to watch on Amazon Prime Video, you’ve come to the right place. May brings a couple of high-profile 2022 releases to the streaming service for the first time, as well as the streaming debut of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s feel-good sports story “Air,” which opened exclusively in theaters earlier this year. Whether you’re looking for an auteur-driven drama, whimsical comedy or a full-on Western, there’s truly something for everyone in our curated list of the best films newly streaming this month.
Check out some of the best new movies to stream on Amazon Prime Video in May below.
Have you ever wondered how Nike secured the rights to Michael Jordan’s likeness and created the unstoppable Air Jordan brand? Well, even if you haven’t, here’s a movie that explains it anyway. Matt Damon stars as Sonny Vaccaro, a plucky employee of upstart Nike (which was on the verge of shutting down its basketball division), who comes across a Freshman player that he thinks has what it takes – Michael Jordan (who is never fully seen, just glimpsed in archival footage and from the neck down). He’s got to convince his boss, Phil Knight (Ben Affleck), his fellow Nike colleagues (including Chris Tucker and Jason Bateman) and, most crucially, Jordan’s parents (played by real-life couple Viola Davis and Julius Tennon). Oddly charming and uplifting for a movie nakedly about the triumph of capitalism, it is smartly directed by Affleck and features a ton of winning performances. Even if you don’t care about the Air Jordan brand and how it was secured by Nike, you’ll still be utterly riveted. – Drew Taylor
If you’re already a fan of Paul Thomas Anderson because of more recent films like “Phantom Thread” or “Licorice Pizza,” why not watch his very first movie, the barely-released “Hard Eight?” Originally titled “Sydney” (still PTA’s preferred title) and an expansion of Anderson’s 1993 short film “Cigarettes & Coffee,” the movie debuted at the 1996 Cannes Film Festival to a somewhat muted response. But all of Anderson’s stylistic tics and thematic concerns are all there, right from the beginning – his roaming, zooming camera (operated by cinematographer Robert Elswit, who would become one of his regular collaborators in that first stretch), his obsession with doomed sad sacks (John C. Reilly, in his first of many PTA sad sacks) and his nimble control of both tone and texture. (“Hard Eight” is his most openly “crime movie” movie.) Philip Baker Hall, Gwyneth Paltrow and Samuel L. Jackson all turn in outstanding performances, in a story about a young hustler who is brought under the wing of a seasoned vet in dingy Reno, Nevada. It’s rare to see a filmmaking talent as fully formed as Paul Thomas Anderson was with “Hard Eight.” But considering the rest of his career, it’s not in the least bit surprising. He was always one to bet on. – Drew Taylor
Wes Anderson’s 2012 ode to young love still stands as one of his best films thus far, and is a wonderfully melancholic look at romance. “Moonrise Kingdom” takes place in and around a fictional New England island where an orphan boy escapes from scout camp to run away with a girl with whom he’s in love. The film chronicles their solo adventure with a mix of whimsy and sadness, as their story of unbridled joy is contrasted with the lonely relationships of the adults surrounding them. Anderson brought some of the stop-motion techniques he used on “Fantastic Mr. Fox” to this film, resulting in a delightfully whimsical take on your typical coming-of-age story. – Adam Chitwood
Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio are receiving rapturous reviews for their latest collaboration, “Killers of the Flower Moon,” so now’s a good time to revisit possibly their most underrated film together: “Shutter Island.” The 2010 film is Scorsese’s take on a psychological thriller with DiCaprio playing a U.S. Marshal investigating a psychiatric facility in 1954 following the disappearance of one of the patients. Based on the book of the same name by Dennis Lehane, the film boasts a stacked cast (Mark Ruffalo, Michelle Williams, Ben Kingsley and Max von Sydow co-star) and offers a unique kind of movie from one of our greatest living directors: a paperback thriller. – Adam Chitwood
While “Till” received near-unanimous praise from critics when it was released last year, the film was ultimately shut out of the Oscar race (egregiously so). Now’s your chance to catch up with this powerful story on Prime Video if you missed it in theaters. Directed by Chinonye Chukwu, “Till” tells the true story of Mamie Till-Bradley (Danielle Deadwyler), the mother of 14-year-old Emmett Till who was abducted and lynched in 1955. The film chronicles how Till-Bradley fought for justice in the wake of her son’s murder, specifically in relation to the trial that followed Till’s murder. – Adam Chitwood
After winning a host of Oscars for their Western “No Country for Old Men,” the Coen Brothers went for something even more traditional in the genre with 2010’s “True Grit,” and the result is one of their best films. This film adapts Charles Portis’ 1968 novel of the same name rather than the previous film starring John Wayne and finds Jeff Bridges playing a drunken U.S. Marshal who accompanies a 14-year-old girl (Hailee Steinfeld) on a quest to find the man who murdered her father. They’re joined by a cocksure Texas Ranger (Matt Damon), and what ensues is a classic Western tale through the lens of the Coen Brothers’ worldview. It also boasts some terrific cinematography from Roger Deakins and a tremendous score by Carter Burwell that pulls from 19th-century hymns. – Adam Chitwood
The 2022 film “She Said” adapts the 2019 book of the same name by reporters Jodie Kantor and Megan Twohey that chronicles their New York Times investigation that exposed Harvey Weinstein’s history of sexual abuse. Previously streaming on Peacock, the film is now on Prime Video and offers a behind-the-scenes peek into one of the biggest news stories of the 21st century. Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan star as Twohey and Kantor, while the supporting cast includes Patricia Clarkson, Andre Braugher, Samantha Morton and Ashley Judd. – Adam Chitwood