The independent entertainment company Amazon Studios went into producing Original Films back in 2015. Mind you, this is about the exact time Netflix also decided to produce Netflix Original Films. While Beast of No Nation was directed by a relatively lesser-known director Cary Joji Fukunaga (at least for 2015 as the guy is directing the latest bond film), Amazon Original Films kicked off with a Spike Lee Joint. We are in 2021 now and Amazon Original Films have taken the market by storm. Not only are they more consistent than Netflix Originals but also superior in their content (albeit the occasional mishaps).
In the following list, I will be looking back at the Amazon Original Films that are currently streaming over their OTT platform Amazon Prime Video (globally); ranking them from worst to best. Please take into consideration that this is an ever-updating list with an exception for those I haven’t already seen.
10. Last Flag Flying (2017)
Richard Linklater can really hold up conversations. In Last Flag Flying, he follows a trio of Vietnam War Veterans – the medic Doc Shephard (Steve Carell), ex-Navy Corps – Sal (Bryan Cranston), and Richard Mueller (Lawrence Fishburne). All of them are carrying their no-so-heroic past on their shoulders. To add to that, mental scars have been ingrained into them for life. What Linklater does here is setting up a thin line between social and political commentary by making these three characters collide with each other when a sorrowful situation brings them together. Funny, charming and only the right dose of melancholic, this is a film that can be often undermined due to Linklater’s exceptional oeuvre.
Related to Amazon Original Films – LAST FLAG FLYING : HAPPINESS, SORROW AND ALL THAT’S IN BETWEEN
Watch/Stream Last Flag Flying Online Here
9. One Night in Miami… (2020)
Regina King’s adaption of the fictional stage play where four famous black icons just talk to each other is definitely one of the most relevant things to exist. One Night in Miami is also like a stage play that plays out for 90 minutes but every single minute of it feels like a loaded analogy to the times we live in. While there is very little scope here to really allow any of these fascinating actors to breathe life into their characters; the fact that King manages to move them around in a room – just enough to shake up believes and disbelieves (especially when it comes to repression and taking a stand) is really something.
Watch/Stream One Night in Miami… Online Here
8. Time (2020)
“Desperate people do desperate things,” says Fox Rich – A lady who has been waiting the last two decades for the release of her husband from prison. She is referring to the robbery both of them committed in the late 90s while narrating these incidences as we walk past intimate moments of her life. These moments are captured on camera as memories for her husbands’ release. Apart from being an entrepreneur, she is also a mother of 6 boys as she leads a fight against America’s prison complex. Director Garrett Bradley must have come to the picture much later when as we see a transition from the old quality footage with a digital one, but ‘Time’ captures a singularly moving portrayal of resilence. One that encompasses years and years of patience with an incredibly touching human core.
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Watch/Stream Time Online Here
7. Beautiful Boy (2018)
As far as Amazon Studios produced films are concerned, I doubt that there will ever be a more mature, unflinching, and realistic portrayal of drug addiction. Beautiful Boy features both – Timothée Chalamet and Steve Carrel in exceptional form. While not as emotionally investing as could have been, Felix Van Groeningen’s direction constantly focuses on the addiction and interpersonal relationship between a father and son. Making the whole journey resonate universally with every individual who has often relapsed and run away from the one hug that could mean everything.
Also, Read – 3 Films That Accurately Portrayed Drug Addictions
Watch/Stream Beautiful Boy Online Here
6. The Report (2019)
One can’t deny the fact that 2019 was the year of Adam Driver. The American actor had a ball with two consecutive films that had him at the top of the game. While his performance in Noah Baumbach‘s Marriage Story was universally lauded (with his first Oscar nomination for Leading Actor), his excellence in The Report can’t be put under the rug. Scott Z. Burns’ political drama has since been forgotten but one simply can’t avoid the fact that it’s really good. Following the life of Daniel Jones (former United States Senate investigator), the film is an eye-opening account of the CIA’s use of torture and the coverup that went into hiding that story.
Similar to Amazon Original Films – The 50 Best Films Of 2019
Watch/Stream The Report Online Here
5. Blow the Man Down (2020)
Who doesn’t enjoy a good murder mystery? Moreover, a mystery that ropes in an ensemble that is clearly having the time of their life is a big plus. Danielle Krudy & Bridget Savage Cole are first-time directors who take their Fargo-Esque inspiration to a level that holds no boundaries. Set in a town run by women, Blow the Man Down follows the life of two sisters caught in a complete mess. This is not just one of the best Amazon Original Movies of 2020 but it is also a cunning, conniving little film that uses its setting, humor, and macabre characters to build an ambitious dark comedy about trying to go up the ladder.
Similar to Amazon Original Films – The 50 Best Films Of 2020
Watch/Stream Blow the Man Down Online Here
4. Sound of Metal (2020)
Riz Ahmed is the voice, eyes, and soul of Sound of Metal. His vacant looks convey enough about Ruben that words simply can’t. It is a fully lived-in character study of a drummer who is slowly losing his hearing. Though not an original premise by any measure (check out It’s All Gone Pete Tong (2004) & subsequent Hindi remake Soundtrack (2011)), Darius Marder’s film superimposes incredible sound design with a complex look at passion and addiction. Marder’s film is more focused on making the character understand his present state, accepting the stillness of life, and starting off anew. This makes the film one of the most important and well-articulated representations of the deaf community.
Also, Check out – Download the Script of Sound of Metal
Watch/Stream Sound of Metal Online Here
3. Photograph (2019)
There’s only so much one can say when there’s no one to listen. In Ritesh Batra’s Photograph – the best hindi Amazon Original movie to date, Miloni (Sanya Malhotra) has been so submerged in her academic life that she has forgotten what she needs to say to people. Her middle-class Gujarati family seems to have never told her about her beauty and their appreciation of a dress she wears never comes from her liking. This is until Rafi – A street photographer clicks her in front of the Gateway of India calling that her smile will be transfixed in her picture, even when sadder times come in her life. Photograph is about two emotionally distant people trying to find common ground. Its real charm lies in moments of silences and melancholy that flow like poetry – often left incomplete and untouched.
Similar to Amazon Original Films – Photograph  ‘NYIFF’ Review: A minuscule love story containing multitudes of suppressed emotions
Watch/Stream Photograph online Here
2. I’m Your Woman (2020)
As far as Amazon Original movies of 2020 go, “I’m Your Woman” was the biggest surprise for me, personally. It is a whip-smart, sharply written subversion on the gangster-on-the-run trope. In Hart’s story, Rachel Brosnahan stars as Jean – a clueless, trophy wife who finds herself in the midst of a run when her gangster husband becomes prey to a dangerous cross-fire on the work front. Director Julia Hart only makes us aware of Jean’s motivations as much as required. This because she is constantly understanding herself and how her world has just been turned upside down. In the mishap, her character transformation is being chartered in a muted, believable way. Making it one of most underrated Amazon Original Movies ever.
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Watch/Stream I’m Your Woman Online Here
1. Wonderstruck (2017)
Todd Haynes’s “Wonderstruck” was first screened at Cannes and also competed for the prestigious Palme d’Or before having a much-need, though small theatrical run. In hindsight, is about braving the sadness that is constantly trying to make and shape you into becoming someone. It is an adventure into the unknown that makes one understand what true love and compassion really mean. Shown through the eyes of two children who share common deafness, the film uses the single most beautiful (structurally and visually) way in which it examines adolescence and the constant feeling of trying to belong somewhere.