culture

12 Best Movies and Shows Added to Hulu in November

… and when and why to watch them this busy holiday season

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New Line Cinema / Lions Gate Films

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November 13, 2018

Hulu is slowly taking over from Netflix as the home of all of your favorite TV shows and movies—alongside its own original series. Here is what's coming to the streaming service in November (and if you're stuck on Netflix, check out our list of November shows here).

1. Pleasantville

Available: Starting Nov. 1 // Recommended by Trey Taylor

 

⌚️When to watch it: When racial tensions bubble over with your relatives, subtly put this on in the background.

 

Why watch it: Pleasantville is an allegory for race relations. Tobey Maguire and Reese Witherspoon are siblings who get sucked into the TV, forced to live out a '50s Leave It To Beaver-esque sitcom. It’s sort of like Back to the Future meets Do The Right Thing. The film starts out in black and white and slowly transitions to color—which seemingly threatens the status B&W quo of Pleasantville. “We don't like change!” the residents grumble when random citizens begin to live life in full color. It sounds confusing, but just watch it for young Paul Walker.

2. 28 Days Later

Available: Starting Nov. 9 // Recommended by Corban Goble

 

⌚️When to watch it: As far as sci/fi-horror hybrid movies go, Danny Boyle's foray into the genre might as well be Frozen. You can play it on a loop. 

 

Why watch it: As if Boyle’s involvement wasn’t enough to check out this cerebral zombie flick, one of the best and most influential sci-fi movies of all time, it also represents the beginning of Alex Garland’s ascent. Garland, who wrote 28 Days Later, directed the two best sci-fi movies of the past five years (Ex Machina and Annihilation, don’t @ me) and 28 Days Later is his storytelling at its most bare—and most effective.

3. Monster's Ball

Available: Starting Nov. 11 // Recommended by Brian Anthony Hernandez

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you're not having a ball this Thanksgiving or when you need a critically acclaimed-reality check on how much progress our world still needs to make on a myriad of social issues, turn on Monster's Ball.

 

Why watch it: This 2001 drama lasers in on interracial romance, racism and misogyny in America and earned Halle Berry an Academy Award for Best Actress, memorably making her the first (and still the only) black woman to win that coveted Oscar. She plays a widow named Leticia opposite Billy Bob Thornton, who portrays corrections officer Hank. Linked by tragedy, they attempt to numb their pain with intimacy, for better or worse.

4. Blue Chips

Available: Starting Nov. 1 // Recommended by Omari White

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you’re using your kid's bedroom as a recruiting pit to look for top talents to add to your fantasy hoops team.

 

Why watch it: Talk about "by any means necessary," this fictional sports flick introduces you to the cutthroat business of college basketball. All colleges and universities want to have a winning sports program. By hiring the best coaches available, it's their job to elevate the program one season at a time. But what does it take to make sure you bring in the right people to start or continue a winning tradition? Coach Pete Bell shows us how to win and lose it all in this epic hoops tale, where money is the most dangerous player in the game. Just ask Shaq and Penny!

5. Amélie

Available: Starting Nov. 1 // Recommended by Madison Russell

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you’re feeling culturally drained from too much political talk across the Thanksgiving table and need two hours and nine minutes of pure intellectual and visual delight.

 

Why watch it: Amélie is a quirky, French romantic comedy that observes a charming girl's expeditions in Paris's Montmartre (categorically the best arrondissement, IMHO). I've said it before and I'll say it again—Yann Tiersen's transportive soundtrack coupled with a rapid-fire list of tiny splendors (cracking crème brûlée with a spoon and submerging your hand into a satchel of beans) is movie magic. 

6. Big Hero 6

Available: Starting Nov. 10 // Recommended by Brian Anthony Hernandez

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you're surrounded by your nephews and nieces but need an easy way to entertain them while emerging from a turkey coma. 

 

Why watch it: It’s an animated superhero flick from the minds behind Disney’s Frozen ... What more convincing do you need? This 2014 gem from Walt Disney Pictures follows the life of robotics wunderkind Hiro Hamada, inflatable robot friend Baymax and armor-clad crime-fighting friends that look like Disney-fied Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.

7. The Wolfpack

Available: Starting Nov. 12 // Recommended by Trey Taylor

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you want to hole up for the weekend and not feel guilty for not leaving the house.

 

Why watch it: Crystal Moselle's feature debut is wild. Seven children are holed up in their NYC apartment at the behest of their father, unable to leave because of his fears of the modern world. So they spend the majority of their time consuming any and every movie ever made, writing out the dialogue, making homemade costumes and performing them for the camera. When they do finally rebel and begin to venture outside of their apartment, we see these boys truly come into their own. It's dead fascinating.

8. Vanderpump Rules: Season 6

Available: Starting Nov. 3 // Recommended by Corban Goble

 

⌚️When to watch it: There’s an episode of Vanderpump Rules that speaks to every single feeling on the emotional spectrum, from scoured-out sociopathy to boundless love and loyalty. Take your temperature and go forth, and then watch the next three episodes after that one.

 

Why watch it: Season 6 took Vanderpump Rules’ spiraling, sprawling metafiction to new heights. "Pasta" is used as a codename for cocaine. Jax almost leaves a dramatic situation of his own devising to tweet for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Lisa’s puppetry of the Toms—who are opening a cocktail and tapas restaurant with Lisa, despite the fact that they seem to be the only ones paying for it—is a modern business tutorial. I don’t like when people throw around the term “Shakespearean,” but I really don’t like it here because Shakespeare never had characters this layered. See you next Tuesday.

9. Married With Children

Available: Starting Nov. 9 // Recommended by Brian Anthony Hernandez

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you need an instant pick-me-up about the state of your life and your family relationships, watch any or all of this 11-season comedy and revel in seeing the Bundy bunch bicker.

 

Why watch it: The Bundys are a dysfunctional family of four who shade the hell out of each other, essentially making any other family seem normal and nice. Al, Peggy, Kelly and Bud are the fantastically abysmal four that show us life can be full of lows but there’s always someone out there, likely in your own family, who can out-low you.

10. Escape at Dannemora

Available: Starting Nov. 18 // Recommended by Trey Taylor

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you want to break out of the prison that is time with your family over the holidays.

 

Why watch it: I imagine Patricia Arquette will win an Emmy for this. The miniseries—directed by Ben Stiller—is incredibly competent and uses all of its characters, played by Paul Dano, Benicio Del Toro and Eric Lange, to great effect. Inmates who are locked up in a high security prison do their best to break out with the sneaky help of Tilly (Arquette), who has a massive crush on inmate Sweat (Dano). People will be talking about this series for the rest of the year.

11. The Birdcage

Available: Starting Nov. 1 // Recommended by Trey Taylor

 

⌚️When to watch it: Whenever you feel that twinge of pain because you miss Robin Williams—so like, now.

 

Why watch it: This was Robin Williams’s Tootsie moment. Yeah, he got the Oscar for Good Will Hunting, which is great. But his best (and most underrated) supporting role? The Birdcage, wherein he plays gay drag club owner Albert with a kid from a former one night stand who shows up and declares he's getting married. The catch: His kid's fiancée is the daughter of this ultraconservative Republican senator. So Albert (Williams) has to re-enter the closet to play straight. And it's hilarious.

12. The Little Death

Available: Starting Nov. 12 // Recommended by Trey Taylor

 

⌚️When to watch it: When you are struggling in the bedroom department with your significant other or just need a good laugh.

 

Why watch it: This anthology film explores different sexual fetishes. Each set-up features a wacky fetish that one couple tries out and the repercussions of going the distance. For example, one woman's fantasy is to have sex forced upon her, so her husband, who naturally interprets it all wrong, dresses up in disguise and corners her in a public place only for it to hilariously backfire. Another couple explores phone sex for the deaf. I can't bring myself to describe any more of this comedy. Just… watch.