From superpower drug cartels in ‘Project Power’ to modern coming of age stories in ‘Chemical Heart,’ here are 11 films and shows we’re looking forward to streaming in August.
If you liked ‘The Old Guard‘ that premiered on Netflix in July, then you’ll definitely want to stream ‘Project Power:’ which looks to be a cross between action thrillers such as ‘Taken’ and ‘Limitless’ and just as fast-paced. Set in New Orleans, the film follows former soldier Art (Jamie Foxx) who is trying to track down the masterminds behind a new pill that gives users superpowers for five minutes — apparently created using DNA from his kidnapped daughter. Along the way, he teams up with a cop (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and a teenaged drug dealer (Dominique Fishback) in attempts to disrupt the supply chain.
Available August 14 on Netflix
‘Glow Up’ Season 2
Love watching makeup tutorials? These artists will blow your mind: ‘Glow Up’ premiered in 2019 as the show that was searching for “Britain’s next make-up star”. The reality show’s second season is set to air on Netflix as 11 aspiring make up artists compete in a range of challenges to showcase their talent and skill. At the end of the show, the winner will have the opportunity to assist some of the world’s leading make up artists. Focusing on everything from editorial make up for Vogue to more special effects challenges dealing with prosthetics, ‘Glow Up’ takes the audience’s fascination with makeover transformations and takes it to the next level.
Available August 14 on Netflix
Tsugumi Ohba’s original manga ‘Death Note’ had its moment in the early–mid noughties when it brazenly explored themes of morality and human arrogance. Centring on Japanese teenager Yagami Light, who discovers a supernatural notebook which brings about the death of anyone whose name is written in it, this live action film (with English subtitles) was released in 2006 alongside the original run of the anime of the same name. Compared to other ensuing movies, this one is considered to be the most faithful to the source material — available for fans to stream on Netflix at the end of the month.
Available August 25 on Netflix
‘John Was Trying To Contact Aliens’
Winner of the Short Film Jury Award at the Sundance Film Festival, ‘John Was Trying To Contact Aliens’ is a 16-minute-long documentary that will fascinate any keen UFO-hunters. Directed by Mathew Killip, the film follows John Shepherd, who has spent the last 30 years of his life trying to contact extraterrestrials. Shepherd has often been featured by local media in the Unites States for his work, known as Project Strat, near Torch Lake, Michigan. After building dozens of machines, including a two-storey-tall deep space transmitter, Shepherd pulls the plug on his work to focus on making connections on Earth.
Available August 20 on Netflix
‘The Umbrella Academy’ Season 2
‘The Umbrella Academy,’ originally a graphic novel series by My Chemical Romance’s Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá, released its second season on 31 July. It picks up shortly after the events of its first season, centring on the band of orphaned superheroes who were adopted by Sir Reginald Hargreaves — now scattered across a timeline in the early 1960s. Contending with an impending apocalypse, the siblings reunite to save humanity once again. Fast-paced with a plethora of twists as always, this is one we are looking forward to streaming on the weekend.
Watch on Netflix
Produced by Jordan Peele and J. J. Abrams, ‘Lovecraft Country’ follows Atticus Black as he searches for his father with his friend Letitia and his uncle George. Set in the 1950’s Jim Crow era in the United States, the series is said to be a dark fantasy horror show based on the novel of the same name by sci-fi writer Matt Ruff. The name is of course a reference to the creatures dreamt up by renowned horror author H. P. Lovecraft. The parallels with white supremacy and Lovecraftian monsters is doubly interesting, given that the early 1900s author was known for his racist views.
Available August 17 on HBO GO
Set in the near future, Taiwanese HBO series ‘Dream Raider’ follows a team of scientists who are trying to study dreams. The story revolves around a criminal conspiracy that uses technology to exploit human consciousness — whilst the authorities themselves race to use the technology to crack a a case. Executive produced by Cheang Pou-soi (the ‘Monkey King’ franchise), the show has obvious similarities to ‘Inception’, and stars an ensemble cast that includes David Wang and Vivian Hsu. It is HBO Asia’s first foray into the sci-fi genre.
Available August 16 on HBO GO
‘MAL.MO.E: The Secret Mission’
MAL.MO.E: The Secret Mission is the directorial debut of screen writer Eom Yu-na. The period fiction piece is set during the Second World War and follows members of the Korean Language Society as they attempt to create a Korean language dictionary under Japanese occupation. Laws that prohibit the teaching and use of Korean have been enforced in an attempt to strengthen political control over the peninsula. The Society must then operate clandestinely as their work could see them being thrown in jail. Loosely based on the actual events that took place from 1929 to 1942, the film stars notable Korean actors like Yoo Hae-jin and Yoon Kye-Sang among others and is said to be beautifully produced.
Available August 17 on NowE (with English subtitles)
This neo-noir is one of the darker films to be streaming this August. ‘Arkansas’ stars Liam Hemsworth, Clarke Duke and Vince Vaughn as members of a drug ring set in — you guessed it — rural Arkansas. Kyle (Hemsworth) and Swin (Duke) are originally dealers for Frog (Vaughn), the kingpin in the state. A string of events then sees them working against one another in order to survive. The film jumps between present day and 1985 to reveal what caused the obstacles each of the parties have to face — culminating in a surprising twist at the end.
Watch on Amazon Prime Video
Set to release late August, this Amazon Original is based on the young adult novel ‘Our Chemical Hearts’ by Krystal Sutherland. Starring Lili Reinhart (‘Riverdale’) and Austin Abrams (‘Euphoria’), the coming of age romance follows high school senior Henry Page as he falls for transfer student Grace Town. Dealing with issues of ableism and mental health, the romantic drama is a more nuanced look at the experience of falling in love for the first time.
Available August 21 on Amazon Prime Video
‘The Peanut Butter Falcon’
Starring Shia LeBeouf, Zack Gottsagen and Dakota Johnson, ‘The Peanut Butter Falcon’ is a feel-good film that has been described as a modern Mark Twain story. It follows Zak (Gottsagen), a 22-year-old with Down Syndrome who has escaped from a nursing home to pursue his dream of attending a wrestling school. He runs into a fisherman named Tyler (LeBeouf) who agrees to take him to his destination as they travel along the Southern Atlantic Coast. Zak’s caretaker Eleanor (Johnson) tries to track them down but is soon just as caught up in their quest.
Watch on Amazon Prime Video