Special Report

Best Movies to Stream on Amazon Prime This Month

The Western, that most American of movie genres, figures prominently in the film offerings of Amazon Prime in May, as do the works of some of cinema’s greatest and most influential directors. (On Amazon and elsewhere, here are some of the best movie classics you’ve never seen available to stream right now.)

To determine the best movies to stream on Amazon Prime this month, 24/7 Tempo developed an index using average ratings on IMDb, an online movie database owned by Amazon, and a combination of audience scores and Tomatometer scores on Rotten Tomatoes, an online movie and TV review aggregator, as of early May 2023, weighting all ratings equally. We considered only movies with at least 5,000 audience votes on either IMDb or Rotten Tomatoes, and ruled out documentaries. Data on streaming availability, also current as of early May, comes from the streaming guide Reelgood. Directorial credits are from IMDb.

Among the Westerns on this list are the William Wyler classic “The Westerner,” Don Siegel’s “The Shootist,” the Coen brothers remake of “True Grit,” and the quintessential “spaghetti Western,” Sergio Leone’s “Once Upon a Time in the West.” (These are the 30 best Westerns of all time.) 

It’s hard to think of Westerns without thinking of John Wayne, who appears here as the star of “El Dorado” and “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.” The latter movie was one of The Duke’s 14 collaborations with director John Ford, with whom he also partnered on the non-Western “The Quiet Man,” No. 18 on the list. Other actors with more than one movie represented here include Dustin Hoffman (“The Graduate” and “Little Big Man”) and Robert Mitchum (“El Dorado” and “Night of the Hunter”).

Click here for a list of the 50 best movies to stream on Amazon Prime this month

Ford is one of a pantheon of distinguished directors from Hollywood’s Golden Age who have films on the list. Among them are William Wyler, Alfred Hitchcock, Charlie Chaplin, Fritz Lang, William Wellman, Frank Capra, and Howard Hawks. Among the more contemporary film helmsmen here are Ron Howard and Joel and Ethan Coen, who each have two films on the list, as well as Ang Lee, Wes Anderson, Gus Van Sant, and Quentin Tarantino.

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