With the holidays approaching, you’re no doubt looking for some good movies to watch. Amazon Prime Video has a bevy of new additions to its streaming library this month, which can help narrow down the choices of exactly what to watch on the intimidating streaming platform. We’ve gone one further and curated a list of the best new movies on Amazon Prime Video in December 2021, singling out some swell movies that have either been newly added to Prime Video’s streaming library or are brand new releases hitting Amazon this month. They run the gamut from thrillers to romcoms to an underrated horror-comedy, so there’s a little something for everyone to enjoy – which is key when you’re watching with the whole family.
Check out our list of the best new movies on Prime Video in December below.
Director Tim Burton was on a roll when he turned his attention to a fairy tale called “Edward Scissorhands.” The 1993 film came on the heels of the success of Burton’s “Beetlejuice” and “Batman” films, and while “Edward Scissorhands” has an undercurrent of darkness just like all of Burton’s work, it was a far sweeter and more emotional film than he had made before. Johnny Depp stars as an unfinished humanoid of a benevolent inventor who died before he could complete his vision. Edward is subsequently discovered years later living in the inventor’s decrepit mansion, and is whisked to the suburban town below by a door-to-door Avon saleswoman (Dianne Wiest). Once in town, he fights being “othered” and strikes up a relationship with the woman’s daughter, played by Winona Ryder. There’s a Christmas tingle to the whole proceedings, and the film boasts one of Danny Elfman’s best musical scores.
“Sleepless in Seattle”
Once upon a time, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan were the King and Queen of romantic comedies. Their second film together, 1993’s “Sleepless in Seattle,” still stands as one of the most romantic and moving romcoms ever made. Ryan plays a Baltimore Sun reporter engaged to a man she doesn’t really love who hears on the radio one night a widower (Tom Hanks) recounting the story of losing his wife and raising his young son. What ensues is her fascination with this man, and attempt to track him down. Nora Ephron co-wrote and directed the film, and that heartwarming finale still gets us choked up all these years later.
“The Hunt for Red October”
Before John Krasinski was Jack Ryan (and Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck), there was Alec Baldwin. 1990’s “The Hunt for Red October” is the first Jack Ryan adaptation, and remains one of the best. Baldwin fills the role of the CIA analyst who deduces that a rogue Soviet naval captain (played by Sean Connery) wishes to defect to the United States while aboard an advanced submarine. Ryan races against the clock to convince his superiors he’s right, while the Naval captain’s motives remain murky aboard the Soviet sub. Connery and Baldwin are terrific in the film, which is a nail-biting thriller directed by “Die Hard” filmmaker John McTiernan.
If you’re someone who loves finding hidden gems, “Jennifer’s Body” is waiting to be rediscovered. Written by Oscar-winning “Juno” screenwriter Diablo Cody and directed by Karyn Kusama (“The Invitation”), the film was marketed as a sexy horror film starring Megan Fox, but in fact is a subversive horror-comedy about the objectification of women. Fox plays a high school student who is ritualistically sacrificed by a struggling rock band in order for them to gain fame. Fox’s character, Jennifer, is then possessed by a demon and begins luring horny teenage boys and then devouring them. Amanda Seyfried plays Jennifer’s best friend who tries to save her before it’s too late. This one is sharp and funny, and has become a cult favorite since its 2009 release.
“The Royal Tenenbaums”
For a shot of whimsy and dry humor, you can’t go wrong with filmmaker Wes Anderson’s acclaimed 2001 comedy/drama “The Royal Tenenbaums.” Featuring a robust ensemble cast, the story concerns a dysfunctional family whose three children were prodigies as kids, but are now struggling as adults. Ben Stiller, Luke Wilson and Gwyneth Paltrow play the children, Gene Hackman is their grumpy and semi-estranged father, and Anjelica Huston plays their loving mother. Bill Murray, Danny Glover and Owen Wilson round out the cast of what feels like an adaptation of a book that doesn’t actually exist.
“Theory of Everything”
For all those Oscar drama lovers out there, 2014’s Stephen Hawking biopic “Theory of Everything” is now streaming on Prime Video. Eddie Redmayne won the Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of Hawking, as the film traces the theoretical physicist’s life from his college days up through present day, with his relationship with his eventual wife (and ex-wife) Jane Hawking (played by Felicity Jones) serving as the backbone. The film deals heavily with Hawking’s ALS diagnosis, and his struggle to overcome his physical limitations while still trying to push the field of physics forward. Charlie Cox, Emily Watson and Simon McBurney co-star.
“Being the Ricardos”
Available: Dec. 21
And if you want something brand new to watch, writer/director Aaron Sorkin’s Lucille Ball film “Being the Ricardos” will be streaming on Amazon Prime Video starting on Dec. 21. The film takes place over the course of one week of production on “I Love Lucy,” and finds Lucille Ball (played by Nicole Kidman) and Desi Arnaz (played by Javier Bardem) dealing with a trio of controversies – a tabloid story about Desi’s infidelity, Lucy’s pregnancy, and a report claiming that Lucy is a communist. The film features the pitter-patter expected of Sorkin’s work, and offers unique insight into the life of Lucille Ball that few in the public understood.