The Old Guard movies july

Charlize Theron in The Old Guard

The top movies to watch in theatres and at home in July

From prestigious dramas, period biopics and political thrillers to possession horror, fantasy-adventure and Funny or Die comedy.

Whether in cinemas or at home, there are plenty of new movies to see in July.

After months of uncertainty, movie theatres finally reopened this month. The schedule remains extremely tentative; some theatres have opted to fill their screens mainly with films that have already been released in pre-COVID-19 times (Parasite, Le grand bain and Portrait de la jeune fille en feu), and news of brand-new releases are coming slowly and without too much certainty. We’ve already seen Christopher Nolan’s Tenet delayed several times (at this point, to Aug. 12) as the COVID-19 situation in the U.S. remains unstable. One of the first movies intended to hit theatres in early July was Unhinged, a truck-driver thriller starring Russell Crowe from director Derrick Borte (London Town, American Dreamer); it, too, has been bumped to July 31. 

The first new release to hit theatres in Montreal — on July 10 — was Target Number One (aka Most Wanted), a political crime thriller from local director Daniel Roby (Funkytown, Dans la brume). Josh Hartnett (interviewed here) stars as real-life hotshot reporter Victor Malarek, who investigates the case of a Québécois ex-pat (Antoine-Olivier Pilon, interviewed here) who is jailed in Thailand for trafficking heroin. Geraldine Viswanathan (Blockers) and Dacre Montgomery (Stranger Things) star in the Toronto-shot romcom The Broken Hearts Gallery, from first-time filmmaker Natalie Krinsky (a writer on Gossip Girl), out Aug. 7 (pushed back from July 17).

Saint Maud movies July
Morfydd Clark in Saint Maud (The top movies to watch in theatres and at home in July)

Kelly Reichardt’s First Cow was poised for release just as movie theatres were closed in March. Resisting the allure of VOD, it will now see release on July 10 (see our interview with Reichardt here). John Magaro and Orion Lee star as a couple of travellers in the 1820s who find a lucrative money-making scheme that involves the unlawful use of a cow that doesn’t belong to them. Another victim of the shutdown was the British horror film Saint Maud, which also saw its release pulled with a day or two to spare — it’s now slated for July 17. Directed by Rose Glass, it’s the story of a hospice nurse who suspects she may be possessed. 

Celebrated Canadian director Atom Egoyan returns with one of his best-received films in years in Guest of Honour, a drama featuring David Thewlis as a health inspector whose daughter has been jailed for sexual assault. (Read our interview with Egoyan about the film here.) Actor and former Montrealer Jay Baruchel’s second feature, Random Acts of Violence (July 31), is a comic book adaptation that premiered to overall positive reviews at Fantastic Fest last year. Baruchel and Jesse Williams (Gray’s Anatomy) star as a couple of comic-book artists whose serial-killer-centric work starts having repercussions in the real world.

July streaming highlights

Radioactive July movies
Rosamund Pike in Radioactive (The top movies to watch in theatres and at home in July)

Charlize Theron stars in the Netflix original The Old Guard, based on the comic-book of the same name. Directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball), the film focuses on a pack of immortal mercenaries. Kiki Layne, Matthias Schoenaerts and Chiwetel Eijiofor also star. Anna Camp, Nasim Pedrad and Heather Graham star in Desperados, a comedy from former Funny or Die director LP. Both of these films are streaming on Netflix now.

Marjane Satrapi (Persepolis) might seem like an unusual choice to direct a biopic of Marie Curie. That’s certainly how many took it when Radioactive premiered at TIFF last year. The film, which stars Rosamund Pike as Marie Curie and Sam Riley as Pierre Curie, was received with cautious optimism by many who applauded Pike’s performance but criticized some of its storytelling choices. It hits Amazon Prime Video on July 24.

Find Montreal film showtimes here.

For more coverage of new movies and TV series, visit the Film & TV section.