Movies · Streaming Guides

11 Good Movies to Watch on Hulu in June 2016

By  · Published on June 2nd, 2016

A horse, some co-eds, several killers, and a gaggle of cannibalistic, humanoid, underground dwellers.

I’m here to tell you that there’s a cinematic streaming goldmine available on Hulu that includes recent hits, older classics, domestic releases, and foreign imports. It’s even home to hundreds of Criterion titles (for now). Sure there’s plenty of filler and seemingly thousands of titles I’ve never heard of before, but I’m I’m here to recommend some good movies to watch this month on Hulu.

Pick of the Month: Rules of Attraction (2002)

Dark comedies are delicate affairs that go awry far more often than they come together. It’s a difficult balance – humor and suffering – but the best ones leave you laughing, cringing, and maybe even crying. Roger Avary’s adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis’ novel is one of the best ones. Wonderfully absurd comic riffs bump against tragedies both physical and emotional, and characters are allowed a real humanity beyond simple caricature or cliche. Things get incredibly dark here, but the visual style, soundtrack, performances, and smart script keep things entertaining and satisfying. The terrifically eclectic cast is a big plus too including Shannyn Sossamon, Jay Baruchel, Jessica Biel, Kate Bosworth, Clifton Collins Jr., Faye Dunaway, Swoosie Kurtz, Kip Pardue, Fred Savage, Ian Somerhalder, Eric Stoltz, and James Van Der Beek. (Available June 3rd)

The Black Stallion (1979)

Carroll Ballard’s (Never Cry Wolf) epic yet intimate tale of a young boy trapped on a desert island with a wild stallion was one of my most memorable childhood movie-going experiences. It’s a gorgeously-shot movie and a terrific adventure, but the boy’s challenges and growth remain in focus throughout. His persistence in the face of adversity is a much-needed lesson for kids – it was for me anyway – and it plays out here in thrilling, invigorating fashion.

C.H.U.D. (1984)

New York City is facing a rash of strange murders – well, stranger than usual – and the killings appear to be the work of creatures living in the sewers. Sure it’s a familiar story, but what makes this one stand out is the presence of two unlikely leads in Daniel Stern and John Heard. They’re joys in supporting roles, but here they get a bigger toy box to banter in and both bring charm and personality to the horror. The monster effects, as evidenced above, are terrific, cheesy fun, and while the sequel tilts too far into (bad) comedy this one remains an entertaining romp throughout.

Criminal Law (1988)

Director Martin Campbell is destined to be best remembered as the man who reinvigorated the Bond franchise not once but twice (GoldenEye, Casino Royale), but he’s also responsible for this under-appreciated late ’80s thriller. It’s a twisted and occasionally brutal tale, and it’s also a rare example of Gary Oldman in a “good guy” leading role. His head to head scenes with an evil Kevin Bacon make for a tense film, and the suspense holds through to the end.

The Good, the Bad & the Ugly (1966)

Clint Eastwood’s third feature with director Sergio Leone – the final film in the unofficial Man With No Name trilogy – sees his quiet gunslinger working alongside the great Eli Wallach and Lee Van Cleef in a tale about treasure, greed, and death by six-gun. My favorite Eastwood western remains High Plains Drifter – it’s just so wonderfully dark and nasty – but this is a terrific spaghetti western filled with wide open vistas, plenty of gun play, and an iconic Eastwood performance.

La Haine (1995)

Paris has a reputation as a city of love, fashion, and more love, but it’s also a bit different from most of our own in its class geography. The city proper is a place of wealth, tourism, and privilege, while the suburbs are home to the “trouble-making” lower class. Writer/director Mathieu Kassovitz (the male lead in Amélie) sets his blistering, black & white tale in those tension-filled suburbs in the day after a large clash between locals and the police. It’s a sharp social commentary that doubles as a thrilling suspense film, and as is too frequently the case when it comes to societal critiques it’s just as relevant today as it was twenty years ago.

In & Out (1997)

Kevin Kline in a lead role is always reason to celebrate, and one of his many great ones is this late ’90s Frank Oz comedy inspired by Tom Hanks’ Oscar acceptance speech for his Philadelphia win. Some may disagree, but the film treats Kline’s character’s sexual reawakening with a fine balance of laughs and respect. The supporting cast is equally great including Tom Selleck, Joan Cusack, and Bob Newhart.

Love & Mercy (2015)

This biographical look at the troubled life of The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson is a triumph of casting with both Paul Dano and John Cusack tackling the legendary singer/songwriter at different stages. Some of the side characters are a bit off – I’m looking at you exaggerated Paul Giamatti – but there’s a lyrical peace to the way the film captures Wilson’s ups and downs. And this is no small feat, but the movie also gave me an appreciation for Beach Boys music (specifically Pet Sounds) that I’ve never had before. (Available June 4th)

The Presidio (1988)

Mark Harmon used to be a movie star, and this is one of his underrated films. (Summer School is also great, but everyone already knows that.) Peter Hyams’ San Francisco-set thriller casts Harmon alongside a gruff Sean Connery and a lovely Meg Ryan, and it features one of the ’80s best foot chases.

Switchback (1997)

Speaking of little seen films, which I was a few paragraphs back, writer/director Jeb Stuart’s late ’90s serial killer thriller is a dark, somber lesser gem that has a permanently scowling Dennis Quaid hunting for a murderer who may have abducted his son. Highlights include desolate Texas landscapes, some thrilling set-pieces aboard a train, and a supporting cast that includes Ted Levine, Danny Glover, William Fichtner, Walton Goggins, and a pre-obnoxious Jared Leto.

The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

Martin Scorsese’s highest grossing film is also one of his best as he focuses his gaze on the numerous excesses of Wall Street and, in some ways, the American dream. Despite criticisms to the contrary, the movie makes it clear that these people having the time of their lives, often at the expense of others, are villains through and through. Even at three hours in length it’s an incredibly energetic and lively movie filled with laughs, f-bombs, nudity, and the casual cruelties of the ambitiously wealthy.

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Rob Hunter has been writing for Film School Rejects since before you were born, which is weird seeing as he's so damn young. He's our Chief Film Critic and Associate Editor and lists 'Broadcast News' as his favorite film of all time. Feel free to say hi if you see him on Twitter @FakeRobHunter.