Amazon Prime streaming is really doubling down in October, in what we imagine is a power grab to help keep subscribers interested for the longer, darker, colder months ahead. We’re seeing one or two new original series’, as well as a bunch of excellent classic films and some solid TV show additions. Look for excellent horror titles, third party TV shows, ‘90s classics and a few seriously good sci-fi and psycho thrillers.
Invasion of the Body Snatchers
This epic sci-fi classic is considered by many to not just be one of the best alien invasion movies of all time, but also one of the best political allegories ever produced. Filmed in 1958, Invasion of the Body Snatchers stars Kevin McCarthy as Miles Bennett, a doctor from a small Californian town who realizes that aliens are slowly invading earth and replacing people with zombie-like “pod people.” On the surface, it’s an excellent alien flick, but underneath, it’s a provocative commentary about the absurd McCarthy-era hysterics and America’s war against communism in the 1950s.
This ‘90s classic is one of those movies that we just can’t help but watch when we see it. Essentially a time capsule featuring everything from JNCO jeans to episodes of Beavis and Butthead, it reminds us of a better time; an America less concerned with North Korea, and more concerned with third-wave ska music and skateboard ramps. Cracked did a breakdown on why Clueless is such a great story and they made some excellent points. What looks like a fairly straightforward plot on the surface actually follows a hell of a lot of healthy character development and personal empowerment, so you can read into that as much as you want. You could also take a walk down memory lane. Either way is totally valid.
Fargo is one of our absolute favorites of all time. A complete mind fuck of a film, it tells the story of a desperate car salesman’s attempt extort his rich father-in-law by staging the kidnapping of his wife. Unfortunately, things get completely out of hand when the people who are hired to do the kidnapping kill a state trooper who pulls them over. Even just a general breakdown of the plot would take us pages, but all you really need to know is this: A lot of people die and a wood chipper helps.
There’s a certain level of mental preparation that needs to be done before viewing a film like The Machinist. It presents a very vivid and seemingly realistic picture of one man’s descent into complete madness. Christian Bale is Trevor Reznik, a machinist who suffers from insomnia among many other psychological issues. His perpetual exhaustion lead to a series of workplace violations that eventually cost him his job. Worse, while these things are going on, it becomes increasingly clear that Trevor is seeing and creating people that don’t exist, all of whom in some way or another contribute to his increasing paranoid delusions. Eventually it all becomes too much for Trevor, and the audience learns the reason for his emaciated state, insomnia, and psychological issues. It’s a valuable but sometimes difficult to watch lesson in owning up to one’s mistakes, and it’s an honestly brilliant film. If you haven’t seen it, definitely take that time to give it a go.
The Americans, Season 5
The Americans is one of those series’ that’s really taken off over the last couple seasons, and we really, really love this show. It’s sixth and final season is gearing up to air next year, but it’s fifth season is coming to Amazon Prime in October. The show centers around the lives of Elizabeth and Philip Jennings, two Cold War-era (Early 1980’s) KGB spies who have to navigate the difficult life of a married couple with children, while also having to keep their secret of being two international espionage agents. The best thing is, the show’s creator and executive producer Joe Weisberg was himself a CIA agent, which lends a very solid air of authenticity to the events in the show. It’s a good one, for sure.
Lore, Season 1
Every good—and horrifying—story is rooted in truth, and that’s exactly what Lore is aiming to prove. From executive producers of both The Walking Dead and X-Files, Lore is a horror-driven anthology that aims to tell the real stories behind some of the most well-known horror stories of our time. The best thing about this original series is that every story is different, and each one is true. So while you don’t technically have to binge watch every single episode to be kept in the loop, we’re willing to bet you’re going to be compelled to, anyway.
American Horror Story, Season 6
Seeing as American Horror Story premieres its 7th season just next month, it’s perfect that Amazon is debuting the total 6th season for it’s Prime subscribers this month. Season 6, titled American Horror Story: Roanoke, follows the story of Shelby and Matt Miller as they move from their comfortable life in Los Angeles to the very strange, obviously paranormal world in Roanoke. However, it’s presented in a very weird kind of pseudo-documentary style, which only helps build on the real (fake) horror to unfold. If you’ve somehow managed to not yet discover the series, definitely start here.
Arrival is one of those sci-fi movies we love because it’s subtle, incredibly intelligent, and doesn’t lend itself to the kind of action-packed alien space attack shtick that’s been played out time and time again. Essentially, when 12 mysterious alien spacecrafts land in several countries throughout the civilized world, acclaimed linguistics professor Louise Banks (Amy Adams) is tasked with trying to figure out their language so that we can communicate with them. Even if you’re not a sci-fi nerd like us, it’s worth checking out because it’s not really about aliens as much as it is about human relationships, foreign diplomacy, and our willingness/unwillingness to communicate effectively with one another. It currently holds a 94% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and we definitely think it’s worth that.
While you’re here, why not check out our picks for Netflix?