Whether you get HBO via its traditional cable channel or via streaming on HBO Now, the premium movie and TV service has hundreds of current and classic movies to watch. The selection of HBO films changes monthly, so we are here to show you the best ones currently available.
Best movies on HBO:
Editor’s note: We will update this list of the best movies on HBO regularly as new ones are released on the streaming service.
1. First Man
It’s hard to believe there was never a major feature film about the first manned moon landing until 2018, when First Man was finally released. Director Damien Chazelle (Whiplash, La La Land) offers an emotional and human story about the events that led up to the Apollo 11 moon landing. Actor Ryan Gosling does an excellent job portraying astronaut Neil Armstrong, a man who remains a somewhat enigmatic figure in the history of space exploration. First Man is definitely one of the best movies on HBO, so give it a watch.
This 2018 film secured Spike Lee his first Academy Award for best director, and it’s easy to see why. An African-American police detective, with the help of a white partner, managed to infiltrate a chapter of the Ku Klux Klan in Colorado Springs in the early 1970s. John David Washington plays the role of Stallworth perfectly and is assisted by Adam Driver as his partner. Look for Topher Grace in the movie as well, playing none other than the most famous Klansman of all, David Duke.
3. Bohemian Rhapsody
Bohemian Rhapsody tells the story of popular rock band Queen. Lead singer Freddy Mercury, like many other rock stars, did not live a peaceful life. The protagonist’s story is full of partying, passion, drama, business conflicts, love life disasters, and more. This film was praised for its outstanding production, amazing musical sequences, and Rami Malek’s acting. Though some critics were harsh at first, this is without a doubt one of the best movies on HBO, as well as one of the most important films of 2018. It deserves all 134 minutes of your time.
4. Love Actually
This 2006 film has turned into a Christmas movie tradition, but this romantic comedy from writer-director Richard Curtis can be watched and enjoyed any time of the year. He seamlessly brings together a massive amount of characters and storylines, linking all of them as they encounter a number of memorable events during the holidays in London. Hugh Grant may be at his best in this movie as the Prime Minister of Great Britain, who suddenly finds himself in love in an unexpected way.
5. 127 hours
Aron Ralston (James Franco) finds himself in one of his many adventures into the wild, only this time things don’t go as planned. After his hand is caught between a boulder and a canyon wall, he must do everything he can to survive in this isolated location. The film takes you through five days of suffering, psychological torture, sacrifice, and survival. Though most of the movie takes place in one spot, it manages to keep you at the edge of your seat.
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6. My Big Fat Greek Wedding
This small indie film came out of left field in 2002 to become one of the biggest box office hits of that year. Nia Vardalos wrote the script and stars as the lead character, based on her real-life courtship and marriage of a non-Greek man, and how that affects her traditional Greek family. The humor comes not from obvious jokes, but from what feels like real situations that most people can relate to. It makes this film one of the best movies on HBO.
Director Paul Verhoeven’s 1987 classic sci-fi action movie may actually be more relevant today than when it was released over 30 years ago. The story of Detroit police officer Alex Murphy, played by Peter Weller, is at the center of this movie. He’s gunned down by a criminal gang, but is revived by a corporation and turned into a cyborg who’s only thoughts are to “serve the public trust, protect the innocent, uphold the law.” At least that’s what OCP wanted to happen. As you will see, Robocop blends action, satire, and pathos to bring us a story that’s highly entertaining.
8. Big Trouble in Little China
Direct John Carpenter’s previous collaborations with actor Kurt Russell were all serious films (the Elvis TV biopic, the action movie Escape from New York, and the classic horror remake The Thing). Big Trouble in Little China, released in 1986, was a complete 180, as this movie is played mostly for laughs. Russel plays Jack Burton, a man who has lots of confidence but is something of a screwup. He wants to help his friend and his fiance defeat an ancient sorcerer in San Francisco’s Little China. The mix of comedy and action is pretty much perfect and you can look forward to watching some funny moments, along with great fight sequences and much more.
9. United 93
This is not an easy film to watch, but there’s no doubt that the 2006 drama is perhaps the most effective movie made so far about the events of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the United States in 2001. The movie is filmed like a documentary and centers mostly on the passengers and crew of United 93, which was taken over by highjackers with the intention of flying into an important building. The documentary-style makes this film more intimate, as the passengers attempt to retake the plane before the terrorists complete their mission. Again, this movie is not for everyone, but it still is one of the best movies on HBO.
10. A Star Is Born (2018)
The fourth version of this romantic, and ultimately tragic, film turned out to be a powerful drama that is helped by some great acting and musical performances. Bradley Cooper made his directorial debut with this movie, and stars as a highly popular country singer who is slowly losing his hearing and his audience. He finds a young female songwriter, played perfectly by Lady Gaga, and he helps her rocket up to stardom. The story has been told many times before, but the 2018 version of A Star Is Born feels more real and emotional than those previous films.
These are the best movies on HBO you should add to your watchlist in our opinion, although there are plenty of other great ones to choose from as well. We’ll update this post with new titles once they make it to the streaming service.