As summer approaches after a quarantined spring, it seems as if the impossible is happening: you’re running out of things to watch. You’ve checked off all the essentials on our lists of the best movies on the various streaming services; you’ve caught up on all the buzzworthy shows; you’ve even watched (gulp) “Tiger King.” (Again.)

So it’s time to get a little looser with your viewing choices. The great thing about the streaming services is the sheer volume of available movies; that’s also their biggest problem, since their terrible algorithms and useless interfaces so rarely help you find the hidden gems, obscure documentaries and cuckoo genre pictures hidden there. And that’s where we come in. Here are nine options to get you started.


It plays, at first, like a gender-swapped millennial “Cast Away,” as a young woman (Kiersey Clemons), the sole survivor of a boating accident, washes up on a desert island and does her best to stay alive all alone. And then … she discovers she’s not alone after all. It’s a simple premise, elegantly executed (it clocks in at a tight 82 minutes, not one of them wasted). And the director, J.D. Dillard, balances genuine scares with subtle social commentary.


Quinn Shephard was all of 20 years old when she wrote, directed, edited, produced and starred in this sharply intelligent and uncommonly complex coming-of-age drama. She plays Abigail, a young actress whose Method approach to her role in a high school production of “The Crucible” causes no shortage of offstage drama. Shephard displays abundant talent as an actor and director, but the picture’s real value is in its verisimilitude; her proximity to this world makes for a teen movie of abundant authenticity.

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