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The Nerd's Watch: The Best Sci-Fi and Fantasy Streaming in August

Casino Royale is coming to streaming this month.
Casino Royale is coming to streaming this month.
Photo: MGM

Streaming is more important than ever. As huge numbers of people stay home during the global pandemic, many have turned to the plethora of services for a much-needed escape. At the start of each month, most streaming services do a little shuffle, adding new movies and taking some away, and io9 is here to help with your decision making.

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Welcome to The Nerd’s Watch, our monthly column where we curate the most interesting sci-fi, fantasy, and horror movies coming to the biggest streaming services. Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and Disney+ are all ready for August, so let’s get to it.


Netflix

Eternal Sunshine is coming to Netflix.
Eternal Sunshine is coming to Netflix.
Photo: Focus
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Available August 1

A Knight’s Tale - Heath Ledger, Paul Bettany, Alan Tudyk, A Knight’s Tale is a movie you forget has an amazing cast. Plus, its modern spin on classic historical action is as fun now as it was in 2001.

The Addams Family - They’re creepy, kooky, and coming to Netflix. This 1991 hit breathed new life into the 1030s cartoon by cartoonist Charles Addams and the 1960s TV show about a very macabre family. It blended humor, music, and a cast that is not just perfect, they became those characters wholeheartedly.

Being John Malkovich - Malkovich! Malkovich! Spike Jonze directs one of the best films of the ‘90s about a couple who find a portal into the mind of John Malkovich. When this movie came out, you couldn’t believe it existed. Today, it remains a true marvel.

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Hardcore Henry - What would a movie look like if the whole thing was shot like a first-person shooter video game? It would look like Hardcore Henry which is a better exercise than a movie but still well-worth watching.

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Jurassic Park, The Lost World, Jurassic Park III - First we’re hearing of these. Something about dinosaurs and a park and Steven Spielberg? Maybe we should check them out. Or at least the first one.

Mad Max - Before he was a Road Warrior, Beyond Thunderdome or on Fury Road, Mad Max was just...Mad Max. This is the 1979 George Miller film that started it all.

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The NeverEnding Story and The NeverEnding Story 2: The Next Chapter
- Odd that these didn’t hit Netflix to go along with the latest season of Stranger Things (if you know then you know) but Falkor, Atreyu and the gang are finally streaming and perfect for the whole family.

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Available August 13

Safety Not Guaranteed - Before Jurassic World and almost Star Wars, director Colin Trevorrow made this unassuming, charming, sci-fi film about a man who claims to be able to time travel. Not everyone is a fan of this one but I truly enjoy it. Maybe you will too.

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Available August 14

Fearless - Fearless is a Netflix original film which I have not seen but this description was too good not to include here: “A teenage boy must babysit a trio of alien superhero babies, who escaped from their daycare, until their dad can get to Earth.”

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Project Power - Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Jamie Foxx star in a Netflix original about a world where a pill exists that gives you random superpowers for five minutes. The trailer looks okay but the premise is more than intriguing.

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The Legend of Korra - All four books - Air, Spirits, Change, and Balance - are coming to Netflix to join Avatar: The Last Airbender. We know fans are pumped about this.

Available August 28

Cobra Kai - Before season three debuts sometime in the future, one of the best streaming series out there makes the jump from YouTube (where a few people saw it) to Netflix where, now, everyone can see it. I can’t recommend this Karate Kid sequel show enough. It’s phenomenal.

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Available August 28

Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace - James Bond movies have been pretty easy to find on streaming services...save for the Daniel Craig ones. But that seems to be changing in August as the first two Craig Bond’s come to Netflix as well as Hulu.

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Amazon

Inception is coming to yet another streamer.
Inception is coming to yet another streamer.
Photo: Warner Bros.
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Available August 1

Inception - If for some reason you haven’t rewatched Inception in the past few weeks, and only have Amazon for streaming, now you are in luck. We think it’s Christopher Nolan’s best film.

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My Bloody Valentine - This is the 1981 original film, not the remake, about a killer in mining gear who goes on a murder spree on the romantic holiday. It’s not quite Halloween or Friday the 13th but it’s a fun slasher film.

Spider-Man 3 - Even if Spider-Man 3 is the worst of the Sam Raimi Spider-Man films, it’s still a Spider-Man film. It’s noteworthy. Beyond that, James Whitbrook says everything that needs to be said right here.

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Available August 3

Dora And The Lost City Of Gold - I missed this 2019 live-action movie based on the popular Dora the Explorer TV show but, apparently, it’s rather good! Now we can all check it out. (Also on Hulu.)

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Hulu

Hellraiser is coming to Disney+. No. Sorry, Hulu.
Hellraiser is coming to Disney+. No. Sorry, Hulu.
Photo: Anchor Bay
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Available August 1

Child’s Play - One, two, Chucky’s coming to Hu-lu. The original, not the remake. We’re talking pure 1988 Chucky. The only thing better than that would be like...another awesome, gory, creepy horror film from the same era. Maybe like...

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Hellraiser - Perfect. What a horror combo.

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Legend Of The Guardians: The Owls Of Ga’Hoole - Long before it comes to HBO Max, the Snyder Cut is being released on Hulu! The Snyder cut of...Legend Of The Guardians: The Owls Of Ga’Hoole but a Snyder cut never the less. Here there isn’t a bat-man, but talking owls in a pretty great animated adventure.

Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Star Trek: Insurrection - It’s true. You can watch the first five Star Trek movies on Hulu in August, then skip several and be totally lost for Insurrection!

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Disney+

The 2000 X-Men is coming to Disney+.
The 2000 X-Men is coming to Disney+.
Photo: Fox
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Available August 7

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time - The sands of time have kind of forgotten that Jake Gyllenhaal was the star of this mega-budget video game adaptation. And though it ended up bombing, there’s surely some fun to have in a quick stream.

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The Peanuts Movie - As if Disney needed another major name brand on its streaming service, the Fox deal means they own this 2015 animated film starring Charlie Brown and the gang. The film was a critical success but came out around the same time as Star Wars: The Force Awakens. So, if you missed it, now you can check it out.

X-Men - The film that started it all. Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, Halle Berry’s Storm, Sir Patrick Stewart’s Professor X, the list goes on and on. Not the best X-movie by a long shot but a hugely important film.

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Available August 14

Ant-Man and the Wasp - One of the last few films from the MCU still not on Disney+ finally makes its way to the streamer. It’s this hilarious sequel that brings Wasp to the forefront along with Ant-Man.

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The One and Only Ivan - This story of talking animals who live in a shopping mall was supposed to be heading to theaters. Instead, like Artemis Fowl before it, Disney skipped its theatrical run and have dropped it on streaming. Unlike Artemis though, this film has a ton of star-power including Bryan Cranston and the voices of Sam Rockwell, Angelina Jolie, Danny DeVito, and Dame Helen Mirren.

Available August 21

Beauty and the Beast - The animated classic is already streaming but, later this month, the mega-hit live-action remake will finally be available. And while yes, it’s kind of pointless, damned if the film isn’t grand and lovely.

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Available August 28

Fantastic Four - The 2015 Josh Trank film is already on Disney+ which means this is the (oddly superior) 2005 version with Chris Evans and Jessica Alba. Let’s just hope the next Fantastic Four movie that gets added is many years down the road and part of the MCU.

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Entertainment Reporter for io9/Gizmodo

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DISCUSSION

lightninglouie
lightninglouie carries the "Demon Seed"

The 2015 Josh Trank film is already on Disney+ which means this is the (oddly superior) 2005 version with Chris Evans and Jessica Alba. Let’s just hope the next Fantastic Four movie that gets added is many years down the road and part of the MCU.

Not particularly awful, just kinda half-assed.