Camp Firewood is more than just a summer camp. It’s a way of life. And an odd cult comedy from 14 years ago, starring Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd and Elizabeth Banks.
As they reunite for a prequel series in July – the original film is also available – Netlix is paving the way with a month of summer blockbuster releases, from The Lone Ranger and Butch Cassidy to The World’s End and Despicable Me 2. There’s even a Nic Cage film for good measure.
All that and the return of everyone’s favourite alcoholic horse celebrity, BoJack Horseman? Who said summer was about going outside and getting a tan?
Note: Release dates are subject to change – titles can often appear 24 hours earlier or later than stated.
Human Capital – Wednesday 1st July (TBC)
Rich people, eh? They’re not very nice. Everyone knows that. So a film about a guy getting involved with Italy’s upper class might not sound like a must-see, but Human Capital – an Italian drama about an estate agent eager to sit at the big table with the wealthy sharks, only for his investments to go sour – is bitingly good stuff.
Pompidou: Season 1 – Wednesday 1st July
You might not put Matt Lucas in the same sentence as Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Jacques Tati, but that’s the aim of his six-episode BBC sitcom, which follows a nice-but-dim lord of the manor (played by the Little Britain and Shooting Stars comedian) and features almost no dialogue at all.
Margin Call – Wednesday 1st July
Two young employees of an insurance company discover that their company is heading towards disaster in this tense financial drama. The cast boasts everyone from Kevin Spacey and Demi Moore to Paul Bettany and Stanley Tucci, but the film’s seemingly perpetual pertinence is what makes it so important to watch.
The Lone Ranger – Thursday 2nd July
Misjudged or misunderstood? Gore Verbinski’s take on the iconic Western character sees Armie Hammer wear the mask of outlaw Reid and Johnny Depp don the face paints of his sidekick, Tonto. Whatever your view on the film, the finale – complete with an arrangement of the famous theme by Geoff Zanelli and Hans Zimmer – is rousing stuff.
Knights of Sidonia: Season 2 – Friday 3rd July
A hero rises to save a world that’s also a spaceship under siege by an alien threat in this Netflix original anime series based on the popular Manga comic.
Admission – Saturday 4th July
Paul Weitz’s rom-com follows a university admissions officer and her former college classmate. The fact that it stars Tina Fey, Paul Rudd, Michael Sheen, Lily Tomlin and Wallace Shawn is enough to put it on anyone’s watch list.
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid – Wednesday 8th July
After owning Glastonbury, Burt Bacharach takes on Netflix with the arrival of this fantastic Western by George Roy Hill and William Goldman. Paul Newman as Butch and Robert Redford as Sundance make the story of these Wild West outlaws as funny as it is flashy. The performance of Bacharach’s Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head, complete with bicycle, seals the deal.
Chris Tucker Live – Friday 10th July
Photo: Netflix/Chris Tucker Entertainment
Actor and comedian Chris Tucker’s first ever full-length stand-up special sees him return to his hometown of Atlanta, Georgia, as he shares his experiences from childhood to the big time.
Coherence – Monday 13th July
Writer-director James Ward Byrkit’s debut feature is a no-budget talker doomed to obscurity by its near-complete lack of marketing moolah, which is a huge shame because it’s exactly the kind of cracking, creepy brain-boggler you used to catch on Channel 4 in the middle of the night. Imagine Friends, if Central Perk were an inter-dimensional portal to existential terror and you’re part way there. (Read our full review.)
Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley’s Island of Dr. Moreau – Tuesday 14th July
What went wrong with Richard Stanley’s 1996 adaptation of The Island of Dr Moreau? This behind-the-scenes documentary explores the inexperience, ego and bad luck that capsized the handling of H.G. Wells’ story.
Money Train – Wednesday 15th July
Ah, 1995. The year brought us Toy Story, GoldenEye and this buddy action flick, which brings together Woody Harrelson, Wesley Snipes and Jennifer Lopez as a group of transit cops planning to rob the “money train” on the New York Subway.
Stan Lee’s Mutants, Monsters & Marvels – Wednesday 15th July
How did Marvel legend Stan Lee get into comics? Far from a big-budget biopic, this low-budget 2002 documentary sits the writer down with Kevin Smith for a 95-minute conversation.
Tig – Friday 17th July
This Netflix original documentary follows the comedian Tig Notaro, who has had a devastating year. Having just recovered from a life-threatening infection and still in mourning over her mother’s sudden passing, Notaro’s subsequent discovery of bilateral breast cancer left her no choice but to turn profound pain into an ongoing punch line, both on and off the stage.
BoJack Horseman: Season 2 – Friday 17th July
Season 2 of Netflix’s dark, adult animation sees Arrested Development’s Will Arnett reprise his role as BoJack, the equine 90s sitcom star, who has been trying to find his way through a muddle of self-loathing, whisky and failed relationships. We catch up with the stallion as he stars in his dream movie (a biopic of Secretariat) – but humbled by the events of last season, BoJack attempts to use his careers’ second wind as a springboard to becoming a newer, better BoJack.
A Most Wanted Man – Sunday 19th July
Anton Corbijn’s spy thriller follows Gunther, a German agent who is assigned with gleaning intelligence from Hamburg’s local Muslim community. When an illegal refugee enters the city and is suspected to be a terrorist, the cogs of espionage gradually turn to arrange a sting operation. The deliciously slow pace may not be to everyone’s taste, but it’s driven by one of the best performances Philip Seymour Hoffman’s career.
A Walk Among the Tombstones – Sunday 19th July
Liam Neeson continues to establish himself as the granddaddy of the action genre with this thriller about a private investigator who is hired to find a drug dealer’s wife. Neeson and guns? You know what to expect by now.
ABCs of Death 2 – Tuesday 21st July
This follow up to The ABCs of Death continues the same anthology premise, collecting together 26 short films, one for each letter of the alphabet.
The Unforgiven – Wednesday 22nd July
Netflix continues to expand its collection of older titles – and Westerns – with this 1960 film starring none other than Audrey Hepburn and Burt Lancaster. Directed by John Huston, the film’s troubled production seemed to doom it to failure, but its examination of racial themes makes it stand out from the rest of the Western pack.
Pain & Gain – Thursday 23rd July
Michael Bay’s crime comedy follows a trio of body-builders, who get caught up in a kidnapping that goes wrong. Based on real events, the satire is the closest the Transformers director has come to an indie movie – and stars a cast that includes Mark Wahlberg and an amusingly over-the-top Dwayne Johnson.
National Treasure: Book of Secrets – Friday 24th July
Jon Turteltaub’s sequel to the first National Treasure see Nic Cage return as the Indiana Jones-style treasure hunter in a mystery that involves the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Because if there’s one thing Netflix needs, it’s more Nicolas Cage films.
The Mighty Ducks – Friday 24th July
Emilio Estevez stars as attorney-turned-reluctant-ice-hockey-coach George Bombay in Disney’s family sports flick that ice hockey fans will remember fondly from the 1990s.
Despicable Me 2 – Saturday 25th July
The Minions seize centre stage in this sequel to DreamWorks’ animated comedy, which sees Steve Carell’s Gru go undercover to catch another super-villain, but its adopted daughter Agnes who makes this as adorable as it is funny.
The World’s End – Saturday 25th July
Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright team up once again for the final entry in their Cornetto trilogy, as a bunch of old friends reunite for a pub crawl in their sleepy hometown, just as aliens invade.
Wet Hot American Summer – Friday 31st July
Back in 2001, Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd and Elizabeth Banks starred in a summer camp comedy by David Wain, which went on to become a cult favourite. Now, the cast are reuniting for a prequel series on Netflix – despite the fact that they’re all 14 years older than when it was first made. (Read our beginner’s guide to Wet Hot American Summer.)
Other new releases coming soon to Netflix UK
Run: Season 1
Hector and the Search for Happiness
Wednesday 1st July
White Collar: Season 5
Warehouse 13: Season 5
Peg and Cat: Season 1
Friday 3rd July
Sex: My British Job
Saturday 4th July
The Manchurian Candidate
Sunday 5th July
Employee of the Month
Sunday 12th July
Tuesday 14th July
Things We Lost in the Fire
The Originals: Season 2
From the Dark
Wednesday 15th July
Mock the Week: Season 9
St. Elmo’s Fire
Saturday 18th July
Hardy Bucks: The Movie
Wednesday 22nd July
Without a Paddle
Friday 31st July
Aladdin and the King of Thieves
A Netflix subscription costs £7.49 a month. For more information, head to www.netflix.com
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