Amy Adams. Channing Tatum. Scoot McNairy. Ewan McGregor. Tom Hiddleston. Bobby Fischer. Peter Serafinowicz. All of them are on their way to Amazon Prime Video in the UK this August, and their names are a clue as to how impressive the streaming service’s line-up is for this month, despite comprising only a few titles.
Quality over quantity has often been Amazon’s remit, compared to the huge spending of rival Netflix on content, but this summer sees that really pay off. Not only has it saved two kids’ originals for the school holidays – Lost in Oz and the return of Tumble Leaf – but it’s got two new original series for adults: Comrade Detective, an amusingly silly actioncomedy about a spoof Romanian series, and The Tick, Amazon’s first superhero series, fresh from Comic-Con. If that’s not summer blockbustery enough, there’s also the arrival of, erm, Arrival, Amy Adam’s stunning sci-fi, and the final episodes of Preacher’s explosive second season.
Best of all, though, is the long-awaited fourth and final season of Halt and Catch Fire, which airs on Amazon weekly, hot on the heels of its US broadcast. That’s worth £5.99 a month on its own.
Here’s what’s coming soon to Amazon Prime Video UK in August 2017:
Comrade Detective – 4th August
Channing Tatum and Joseph Gordon-Levitt lend their voices to dubbing over a Romanian TV series, purportedly from the 1980s. The action comedy follows two detectives, Gregor Anghel and Iosef Baciu, who team up to uncover the truth behind a national hero’s death – and protect Romania from the evil influence of capitalist America.
Lost in Oz – 4th August
Amazon’s latest kids’ original is a modern adaptation of the Oz books from L. Frank Baum. It sees 12-year-old Dorothy Gale discover her mother’s magical travel journal hidden beneath the floorboards of their Kansas home. The book triggers a tornado, which rips her house from its foundation and transports Dorothy and her dog, Toto, to Emerald City, a bustling, modern metropolis. In order to get home, Dorothy learns she must acquire every element on Oz’s “periodic table of magic” – while the city faces the worst magic drought in eons. Along the way, Dorothy and Toto meet unlikely allies in West, Ojo, Reigh the Lion, Scarecrow, and Glinda the Good, who are each eager to help, but struggling with their own problems. Together, they navigate the magical landscape of Oz while undergoing their own unique journeys of self-discovery.
The Light Between Oceans – 4th August
Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander shine in this picturesque and powerfully emotional weepie, from Derek Cianfrance, the director of Blue Valentine and The Place Beyond the Pines.
Arrival – 11th August
Language is essential to life. It can define a community, it can exclude outsiders, and, at its most primal, cognitive level, it can, to some degree, influence the way we think. The thought of aliens touching down on our planet, then, is a linguist’s dream. So why do so many science fiction movies brush over it? Not so with Arrival. Denis Villeneuve’s film embraces that grammatical nerdiness with intelligence and emotion, taking the logic of first contact to profound heights not seen since Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The result is one of the best films of the year – science fiction at its most thoughtful, elegant and moving.
Pawn Sacrifice – 13th August
Edward Zwick’s biopic about chess prodigy Bobby Fischer stars Tobey Maguire, as the legend takes on Soviet Grandmaster Boris Spassky (Liev Schreiber) in the 1972 World Chess Championship. Hot on the heels of its UK cinema release on 11th August, this is set to stream on Amazon Prime Video.
Tumble Leaf – 15th August
After its spring special in April, Amazon’s award-winning original returns for a third season. The stop-motion-filled show follows Fig, a delightfully curious blue fox, and his best, wiggliest caterpillar friend Stick, as they embark on nature-filled adventures and discover science through play. The series is created by Drew Hodges (Community) and executive produced by Hodges and Kelli Bixler (The Roadents) of the studio Bix Pix Entertainment.
Halt and Catch Fire: Season 4 – 20th August
AMC’s series, which began in the 1980s, captures the rise of the PC era in the 1980s, focusing on four main characters attempting to innovate against the changing backdrop of technology. Those players are, of course, Cameron Howe (Mackenzie Davis) and Donna Clark (Kerry Bishé), co-founders of online gaming company Mutiny, Donna’s husband, Gordon (Scoot McNairy), Gordon’s former business partner, Joe McMillan (Lee Pace), and tech veteran John Bosworth (Toby Huss). This fourth and final season will see our characters navigating the early days of the Internet and web browsers, pondering their destinies both personally and professionally, while the competitive nature of the tech world continues to complicate and affect their relationships.
The Tick – 25th August
Amazon’s first ever superhero series, based on the infamously unusual comic books, is created by executive producer and original illustrator of The Tick, Ben Edlund. In a world where superheroes have been real for decades, the show follows an accountant with zero powers, who comes to realise his city is owned by a super villain. As he struggles to uncover this conspiracy, he falls in league with a strange blue superhero. That superhero is brought to life by none other than Peter Serafinowicz, with Griffin Newman (Search Party) playing Arthur, who becomes his unwitting sidekick, with Valorie Curry (Blair Witch) as his sister, Dot. Expect hilariously absurd things.
Other new releases coming soon to Amazon Prime Video in August 2017:
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