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Streaming services have been around for quite some time now, with many of them popping up over the last couple of years to compete with the big boys like Netflix and Hulu. But one streaming service to note as of late is actually Apple TV+, the streaming service that is of course connected to the famous technology company.
While you can rent your favorite shows on the platform, the actual streaming service has so much to offer. From amazing documentaries that talk about hit pop singers like Billie Eilish to the awesomely animated Wolfwalkers, there are plenty of options to suit your tastes. While the shows are just as fun to watch, the movies are as great too. Here are the best Apple TV+ original movies you can check out now.
Beastie Boys Story
Have you ever been curious about the lives of one of the most famous musical groups of all time? That’s exactly what Beastie Boys Story is all about. Band members Mike Diamond and Adam Horovitz came together to share the story of their band and the forty-year friendship that came along with it through every up and down they could have imagined.
For people like us who never really get to understand what’s on the inside of the music industry, it’s certainly one of my absolute favorite pieces of work that I have watched regarding it. For a ban that has been around as long as the Beastie Boys, hearing about everything they have been through is inspiring, and will make anyone want to get up and achieve their dreams with their buddies by their side.
Do you remember that Justin Timberlake is not only a great singer but an awesome actor? Because I did when I watched Palmer. In this drama, Timberlake plays a former high school football star, Eddie Palmer, who has to get his life back together after spending twelve years in prison. But outside forces threaten his chance at a new life.
If you want a heartwarming story about love and compassion along with a determination that can’t quit, Palmer is for you. Justin Timberlake does a fantastic job of showing off his acting chops, and you really start to believe the friendship between him and Sam, a young outcast from a troubled home, which makes you want what’s best for them both. As a viewer, prepare to get invested in these characters' lives and hope that it all goes well somehow after everything they go through.
When I talked about award-winning documentaries, this is certainly one of them. Boys State, which was the winner of the Grand Jury Prize for documentaries at the Sundance Film Festival, goes over the week-long tradition that a Texas high school had of gathering all their seniors for an intensive mock exercise in which they build their own state government.
For me, it was eye-opening. Not only because it was funny to see how some of these young adults tried to find solutions to problems, but also because of how little many of them knew about governments or how things are properly run. You’ll find yourself becoming the student in this mock exercise as well, learning through every step of the way, as well as seeing the tense differences that can arise between political views as early as high school.
I mean, who doesn’t love Tom Hanks and a great WWII story? In Greyhound, we follow Captain Ernest Krause, a man who leads a convoy of ships across the Atlantic ocean to somehow deliver thousands of soldiers and supplies to Allied forces, but with several problems along the way and many treacherous paths that he must take.
What more can you ask for from a great movie? An awesome cast list with Tom Hanks, Elisabeth Shue, Stephen Graham and more, a great premise for a story to begin, and the thrilling background of war upping the stakes for the characters as they need to reach their destination as quickly as possible. Trust in me when I say you won’t regret watching this drama. You’ll feel as if you are there on the boat, riding along the waves to somehow find your way back to land.
Billie Eilish: The World’s A Little Blurry
2019 was one of the biggest years in music, namely for one young star named Billie Eilish. And in Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry, we get a first-hand look into the life she led when she shot up to fame, and how her life differs from being at home to on stage and writing her debut album “WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?”
If you don’t know the story of this amazing singer and want to learn, this is your best bet. Not only is it captivating and motivating to listen to Eilish’s story and hear what she has gone through, but the documentary again gives a look into the music industry from a different point of view. Billie Eilish has many more years ahead of her in her career, but even getting this slight glimpse into her life at the beginning is interesting enough to keep you watching.
Bruce Springsteen’s Letter To You
And now we go from a fresh face in the music industry to one of the most known singers and performers of all time, Bruce Springsteen. In Bruce Springsteen’s Letter to You, Springsteen opens up about everything in his life to his fans as a tribute to the E Street Band, rock ‘n’ roll in general, and how music has shaped his life.
What’s even cooler about this awesome documentary is that we get to see Bruce Springsteen record with his full band live in the studio for the first time since Born in the U.S.A., one of his most famous songs. As someone who grew up listening to all different kinds of genres, it warms my heart to see Springsteen so affected by music and understanding where it has taken him in life. For people who love music, this documentary will definitely be the one for you.
The Elephant Queen
Learning about animals is one of my favorite pastimes, so why not have the chance to do that while also viewing a documentary at the same time? The Elephant Queen is a documentary that goes over what life is like in an elephant herd, with the focus being Athena, a fifty-year-old elephant and the matriarch of a herd of African elephants.
These creatures are so beautiful. I feel like that is said a lot when it comes to elephants, but they truly are. The Elephant Queen only captures that and makes you understand their beauty even more. One of my favorite parts is learning how the group really coexists and moves when things start to get tough in Africa, and it’s so intriguing to see how they work as a herd. Truly, for animal lovers, you won’t be able to take your eyes off the screen.
Okay, I’m going to be honest, animation is one of my favorite genres, and I hope that if it is for you, then you will surely check out Wolfwalkers. In this Academy-Award nominated film, we follow the story of Robyn Goodfellowe, a young hunter who goes to Ireland with her father in an attempt to wipe out the last wolf pack during a time where magic and superstition run wild.
I hope I can scream this to the heavens because oh my God, this is one of the most beautifully animated films I have ever had the privilege to witness. It’s such different animation from the typical CGI-madness that we get on a daily basis and I believe that it’s something everyone should see, even if animated films have never been your thing. It’s euphoric to see a film like Wolfwalkers streaming that is so vividly pleasing as this one.
On The Rocks
Jeez, this whole list has been filled with dramas and documentaries – I think we need a bit of comedy in here! On the Rocks, directed by Sofia Coppola, tells the story of a father and daughter who have suspicions about the daughter’s husband's fidelity, and decide to team up and see if something is amok.
Starring comedy legend Bill Murray alongside Rashida Jones and Marlon Wayans, you will surely be holding your chest crying from laughing with this film – or you just might be crying because you feel connected to it in a way you didn’t get. This story is a great exploration of love and loss, but with plenty of comedic gold sprinkled in-between. And I mean, it’s Bill Murray – how can you not love him?
I’ll preface this by saying that I grew up Catholic, and because of that, I was never exposed to how other religions acted for a long time. That’s why a movie like Hala was so necessary for me to be properly informed. In Hala, we look into the life of Hala Masood, played by Geraldine Viswanathan, and her becoming a teenager with her own values and life that are in conflict with the views of her Muslim family.
Again, I never got to experience anything as a younger child because it wasn’t what I grew up around, so having a chance to really get to explore what it’s like in other religions opened my eyes to things I never thought I’d see. Conversations I never thought I’d have. For Hala, it’s the classic self-discovery story of a young teenage girl, mixed in with some serious themes that anyone from today could understand, and how family and your own life sometimes don’t always mix so well. It’s truly a movie of the times, and a great one at that.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like if Captain America and Nick Fury were in a movie together? Well, that’s what The Banker does, with Anthony Mackie and Samuel L. Jackson taking the lead in this drama film. We take a look at the real story of Joe Morris and Bernard S. Garret, who were the first two African-American bankers in the United States back in the 1950s.
Anthony Mackie and Samuel L. Jackson have some amazing chemistry in this film and they work so well off of each other, but the cast list besides them is something to behold, too. There are stars like Nicholas Hoult from The Great, Nia Long from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Jessie T. Usher Jr. from The Boys, and so many more. Plus, the story itself is based on a true one, so you get a history lesson along with some awesome entertainment.
With all these options to choose from, you’ll surely be entertained for some time now. I can’t wait to see what new 2021 movies end up coming out on AppleTV+ as well over the next couple of months. If they are as entertaining as these, then sign me up. If you want to sign yourself up for Apple TV+, check it out here.