Home Latest The Best Summer Movies to Stream on HBO Max – Collider

The Best Summer Movies to Stream on HBO Max – Collider

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Relax in the summer sun with Batman and Pennywise.
Summer is finally here, and with it are some big blockbuster franchises returning to the big screen, such as the high-flying action of Top Gun: Maverick and the prehistoric chaos of Jurassic World: Dominion. It's great to see box office numbers on the rise again and experience the unparalleled joy of seeing a film on a huge screen with impeccable surround sound. Still, Summer is ultimately a time of rest and relaxation, and some may prefer to experience some great films in the comfort of their own homes. That's where streaming comes in, and luckily HBO Max has an incredibly diverse catalog of both new and classic films to give you a break from that Summer heat.
If you don't have access to HBO Max or simply want to see what's available on other services, be sure to check out our other streaming guides for Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video.
Related:The Best Movies on HBO Max Right Now
Run Time: 2 hours and 56 minutes
Directed by: Matt Reeves
Written by: Matt Reeves and Peter Craig
Starring: Robert Pattinson, Zoë Kravitz, Jeffrey Wright, Colin Farrell, Paul Dano, John Turturro, and Andy Serkis
Even though the highly anticipated reboot of the Caped Crusader premiered in theaters only a few months ago, The Batman is already available to stream on HBO Max. The latest iteration of the cowled hero's story gives The Dark Knight a run for its money as the darkest and grittiest adaptation yet, with a serious and mature tone giving great agency to its tense detective storyline. It's a slower-paced, more methodical take on the iconic character, where Batman has to use his wits rather than his brawn to track down and stop the ruthless serial killer known only as The Riddler.
Watch on HBO Max

Run Time: 1 hour and 41 minutes
Directed and Written by: Gareth Evans
Starring: Iko Uwais, Ray Sahetapy, Yayan Ruhian, and Joe Taslim
We may still have to wait another year before we get to see another installment in the now-legendary John Wick series, but that doesn't mean that there aren't other films that can scratch that itch for some visceral and engaging action set pieces. The Raid: Redemption is one such film, centering on a young SWAT officer who is trapped in a building run by a psychotic crime lord and his band of ruthless gangsters (think Dredd without the science fiction elements). The action here, both in terms of cinematography and choreography, is second to none, and could easily be considered one of the greatest martial arts action films to be released in the last few years.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 2 hours and 7 minutes
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Written By: David Koep
Starring: Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, and Richard Attenborough
Jurassic World: Dominion is finally in theaters, and if you want to visit or revisit the adventure that started it all, the original Jurassic Park is available to stream on HBO Max. Science fiction novelist Michael Crichton's dinosaur horror masterpiece comes to life with unparalleled direction by Steven Spielberg as well as a legendary score from John Williams. What starts out as a dream zoological facility comprised of prehistoric creatures turns into a nightmare of evolutionary proportions when the amusement park's animals get loose and run rampant throughout the park, all while the small group brought to test out the facility tries to find a means of escape. If you watch Jurassic Park and are still in the mood for some more dino fun, the film's two sequels, Jurassic Park: The Lost World and Jurassic Park III, are also available on HBO Max.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 1 hour and 24 minutes
Directed by: Scott Sanders
Written by: Michael Jae White, Byron Minds, and Scott Sanders
Starring: Michael Jae White, Tommy Davidson, and Arsenio Hall
"He's super bad. He's out of sight. He's Black Dynamite." That tagline feels like it was ripped straight out off the poster of the blaxploitation films of the 1970s, and that seems to be the exact mindset that writer and star Michael Jae White had when he made the cult classic hit, Black Dynamite. The result is a very on-the-nose satire of that era and subgenre of films, being laugh-out-loud hilarious while also having some truly entertaining action set pieces. Michael Jae White's performance reflects that as the titular hero who exudes all manner of "badassery".
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 1 hour and 41 minutes
Directed by: Hayao Miyazaki
Written by: Hayao Miyazaki and Melissa Mathison
Starring (English dub): Tina Fey, Liam Neeson, and Cate Blanchett
Really any film created by the great Studio Ghibli could be featured on this list, as every single one of them is available to watch on HBO Max. For the Summer season particularly, however, we have to recommend Ponyo, a visually stunning semiaquatic tale about a young boy who forms a close friendship with a magical goldfish princess. Ponyo has grown tired of living with her controlling father and wants to experience a normal life within the nearby coastal town, not realizing the potential dangers and consequences that could follow her and affect her new friend's life in ways neither of them could imagine.
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Run Time: 1 hour and 47 minutes
Directed by: Gore Verbinski
Written by: Gore Verbinski, John Logan, and James Ward Byrkit
Starring: Johnny Depp, Isla Fisher, Ned Beatty, Bill Nighy, and Alfred Molina
On paper, Gore Verbinski's follow-up to the huge success of the original Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy being an animated family film with talking animals set in the wild west seems like an extremely weird idea. Rango is fittingly an extremely weird movie, but in all of the best ways. The titular lizard is a self-proclaimed actor who stumbles upon a remote town that feels trapped in the culture of the 1800s west. When the town's vital water supply goes missing, Rango must play the part of a heroic sheriff and come face to face with a multitude of colorful characters, including an intimidating rattlesnake gunslinger. Though families seem to be the target demographic for Rango, much like the original three Pirates films it isn't afraid to get a bit darker and play with more existential themes and styles, leading to a western romp that will entertain younger audiences while giving something a little more to older fans of the genre.
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Run Time: 1 hour and 54 minutes
Directed and Written by: Jon Favreau
Starring: Jon Favreau, John Leguizamo, and Sofia Vergara
In a passion project that very much seems to be inspired by his own life and career, Jon Favreau's Chef is an absolutely delightful and heartwarming comedy about the struggle an artist has between financial success and creative success. Favreau's character Casper should have everything he's ever wanted, being the head chef of a well-renowned and successful restaurant. Yet, Casper still can't help but believe that he is currently in a "creative rut", meaning that he feels like the food that he is producing isn't meaningful aside from making money. This kickstarts Casper's quest, where he starts his own food truck and is not only finally able to make the food that he wants to make, but is also able to finally reconnect with his family whom he lost touch with.
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Run Time: 1 hour and 37 minutes
Directed by: Herbert Ross
Written by: Nora Ephron
Starring: Steve Martin, Rick Moranis, and Joan Cusack
In a rare role where Steve Martin doesn't have his signature white hair, Vinnie Antonelli finds himself living an entirely different life in an unfamiliar part of the country when he moves from the big city to the quieter suburbs. The reason for the move isn't a simple vacation for Vinnie, as he's actually a full-time mobster whose been placed in witness protection by the FBI. His handler, played by 80s and 90s comedy legend Rick Moranis, then has to deal with Vinnie's constant antics and plans to escape, all to hilarious results.
Watch on HBO Max

Run Time: 2 hours
Directed by: Jonathan Lynn
Written by: Dale Launer
Starring: Joe Pesci, Marisa Tomei, Ralph Macchio, Mitchell Whitfield, and Fred Gwynne
When Bill Gambini and his best friend are falsely accused of murder, there's only one lawyer he can afford: his cousin Vinny. The only problem is that Vinny Gambini's experience in the courtroom is minimal, to say the least, having never actually represented anyone in a high-profile murder case. Armed with the weaponized sass of his long-time fiancée Mona Lisa Vito, Vinny takes an extremely unorthodox approach to the court case, which proves difficult considering the extremely strict southern judge that he needs to appeal to.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 1 hour and 48 minutes
Directed and Written by: M. Night Shyamalan
Starring: Gael García Bernal, Vicky Krieps, Rufus Sewell, Alex Wolff, and Thomasin McKenzie
M. Night Shyamalan's latest isn't perfect, but Old is still a fascinating psychological horror that takes full advantage of its refreshingly unique concept. A small group of people staying at the local hotel are invited to visit a nearby secluded beach. It seems like a little slice of paradise except for one thing: something about the beach is causing everyone to age extremely rapidly. Even worse, the same mysterious force that is causing them to rapidly age also seems to be preventing them from leaving, so now the families have to find a way out before they essentially turn to dust.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 2 hours and 15 minutes
Directed by: Andy Muschietti
Written by: Chase Palmer, Cary Joji Fukunaga, and Gary Dauberman
Starring: Bill Skarsgård, Jaeden Martell, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Chosen Jacobs, Jack Dylan Grazer, and Wyatt Oleff
Fans of the original Stephen King novel had long-awaited for a more updated adaptation after the decent yet dated 90s miniseries version of It. We finally got to see Pennywise in all of his homicidal clown glory in a much more serious and terrifying light with the 2017 adaptation, wisely choosing to only focus on the section of the story where the Losers Club were children. The killer clown has never been so scary, and the film offers a shocking amount of levity and humor to keep its audience members from constantly having their eyes covered. If you want to see more of Pennywise, HBO Max is the place for you, as you can also watch the entire 1990 miniseries as well as It: Chapter 2 on the service.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 2 hours and 24 minutes
Directed by: Michael Bay
Written by: Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, and John Rogers
Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Megan Fox, Josh Duhamel, John Turturro, Peter Cullen, and Hugo Weaving
The Transformers franchise has always had its fair share of ups and downs, but the original live-action film based on the popular toy line and animated series stands out as one of the ups. It's hard to deny for even the staunchest of critics of Michael Bay's take on the robots in disguise is jam-packed with all the action and spectacle you would expect from a Michael Bay Transformers movie. Seeing the Autobots and Decepticons duke it out on a big 4K television is the exact kind of show one would want to watch when they're in the mood for a glossy Summer blockbuster.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 2 hours and 7 minutes
Directed by: David Fincher
Written by: Andrew Kevin Walker
Starring: Morgan Freeman, Brad Pitt, and Gwenyth Paltrow
Though many theorize that Se7en may take place closer to purgatory rather than hell, you can still feel the profound sense of heat from this amazingly intense thriller from David Fincher. Detectives Somerset and Mills are attempting to track down the culprit behind a string of murders, with the only link connecting them is they all appear to be based on one of the seven deadly sins. Their trail eventually leads them to some answers and also takes them to one of the most iconic and shocking conclusions in a neo-noir film of all time.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 2 hours and 8 minutes
Directed and Written by: Brian Helgeland
Starring: Chadwick Boseman and Harrison Ford
In 1947, a baseball legend was born when Jackie Robinson played his first game with the Brooklyn Dodgers, becoming the first black man ever to play major-league baseball. 42 is the story of Robinson's professional baseball journey, detailing the trials and tribulations he faced both on and off the field. It's a deeply entertaining underdog story framed around America's favorite pastime and its elevated great performances from both Harrison Ford and Chadwick Boseman.
Watch on HBO Max
Run Time: 1 hour and 38 minutes
Directed by: Harold Ramis
Written by: Harold Ramis, Brian Doyle-Murray, Douglas Kenney
Starring: Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Bill Murray, and Ted Knight
Caddyshack could possibly be the ultimate Summer film. It doesn't have the deepest or most complex of stories, but it does encapsulate that feeling of entertainment and relaxation that you'd want to feel in a season like this. It's essentially just a bunch of high jinks with some young high school kids trying to find the best ways to have fun working as golf caddies at a snobby golf club. Basically, the whole movie is just like the character that Rodney Dangerfield plays in it. It's not about the logistics of the game. It's about having fun and not caring what other people think.
Watch on HBO Max
Aidan Kelley is a resource writer for Collider, as well as an independent filmmaker and lover of all things cinema.
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James has found ultimate joy all through his 23-year-long journalism career by writing for national and international newspapers, websites, and blogs. From technology to politics to sports to entertainment, he has been able to express ideas and pen opinion pieces on whatever triggers his interest.