Like most streaming services, Peacock is thought of first as a TV platform. It hosts classic NBC series like The Office as well as some original shows that are available only to premium subscribers. In addition to the series that it offers, though, Peacock is also home to a number of great movies that span the history of cinema as an art form.
Some of these movies are available to all those with a Peacock account, but others are available only to those who have a paid subscription to the service. This list will pull titles from both groups, so if you want to be sure you have access to all the movies that Peacock has to offer, you’ll have to be $5 a month to access them.
Basically the second that Bridesmaids came out, it was recognized as a comedy classic, and it’s earned that reputation. The film, which follows a maid of honor who finds that her life is in shambles as she prepares for her best friend’s wedding day, is wonderfully character driven, even as it makes sure to squeeze in plenty of laughs. Thanks to a stellar lead performance from Kristen Wiig and a particularly memorable turn from Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids sings from beginning to end. It’s one of the funniest movies of the 21st century, and it’s got a warm, fuzzy center to boot.
Director: Paul Feig
Main Cast: Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Melissa McCarthy
Runtime: 125 minutes
IMDb Rating: 6.8
Train to Busan
From the second it starts, Train to Busan is essentially a non-stop thrill ride. This South Korean action horror film features an ensemble cast who are all on a train to Busan as a zombie outbreak begins to infect their car. The film features plenty of small character arcs, but what makes the movie effective is the way it moves from set piece to set piece, only allowing the audience to breathe for seconds in between. Train to Busan is a great watch precisely because it never lets up, and because it finds a way to make the zombie apocalypse feel fresh through its precise direction and careful attention to character.
Director: Yeon Sang-ho
Main Cast: Gong Yoo, Ma Dong-seok, Jung Yu-mi
Runtime: 118 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.6
About a Boy
There was a time when Hugh Grant was the most charming screen presence in the world, and in About a Boy, he turns all that charm on its head. Grant plays Will, a man-child who has no responsibilities and believes he’s happier that way. After inventing a child in order to meet women, he meets and eventually grows fond of a young boy whom he spends quite a bit of time with. As the movie moves toward its conclusion, it’s clear that Will is the one who has things to learn, and although it may sound cloying, it’s his interaction with a young boy that ultimately gets him out of the rut he’s put himself in.
Director: Chris Weitz, Paul Weitz
Main Cast: Hugh Grant, Nicholas Hoult, Toni Collette
Runtime: 101 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.1
The Cabin in the Woods
From the second it starts, there’s something a little off about The Cabin in the Woods, but as it turns out, that’s exactly the point. The movie is designed as a broad parody of the horror genre, and it turns out to be a hugely effective one. The film follows a group of teenagers who get picked off one by one after arriving at a secluded cabin for a weekend retreat. In this version of the story, though, they’re human sacrifices who have to die in a specific, ritualistic way to keep the more primordial forces of the world at bay.
Director: Drew Goddard
Main Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Bradley Whitford, Richard Jenkins
Runtime: 95 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.0
Spike Lee can make treatises on race that are among the best films ever made, but he’s also great at just making a highly competent thriller. In Inside Man, Spike follows the story of a bank robber who shuts down a huge section of Manhattan. The robber is convinced that he’ll get away with the crime, and he’s squaring off against a negotiator played by Denzel Washington who knows that the system he’s working within is fundamentally broken. Inside Man is a thriller, to be sure, but it also has ideas, and that’s what really takes the movie to the next level.
Director: Spike Lee
Main Cast: Denzel Washington, Clive Owen, Chiwetel Ejiofor
Runtime: 129 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.6
Brad Pitt is one of the greatest movie stars of all time, and Moneyball is proof. In the film, Pitt plays Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland A’s who decides to use statistics to radically transform what it looks like to build a baseball team. The thing about Moneyball is that it turns this nerdy story into one of the great sports films ever made. It’s a story about underdogs triumphing, but also about one man’s determination to see the game differently. It’s an electrifying film, and Pitt’s performance is one of the great leading man turns in movie history.
Director: Bennett Miller
Main Cast: Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Philip Seymour Hoffman
Runtime: 133 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.6
Being John Malkovich
Like all of Charlie Kaufman’s scripts, Being John Malkovich has a pretty dizzying central conceit. The film tells the story of an unemployed puppeteer who discovers a portal into the mind of actor John Malkovich. Eventually, he reveals the portal to the two women in his life, who fall for one another and leave him behind. Along the way, though, Being John Malkovich provides a strange and hilarious journey that examines what identity really is. Inhabiting another person is not possible in exactly the way it happens in Being John Malkovich, but the movie makes you sit up and wonder how hard it would be to become someone else.
Director: Spike Jonze
Main Cast: John Cusack, Catherine Keener, Cameron Diaz
Runtime: 113 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.7
Away From Her
Away From Her is as heartbreaking as any film on this list. The film tells the story of an aging married couple who find their marriage is fraying after the wife is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. After checking her into a care facility, her husband discovers that she’s grown close to another patient there and has begun to forget their relationship. It’s a heartbreaking portrait of old age, but Away From Her is fully human from the second it starts. There are no plot contrivances or cheap gimmicks, only characters trying their best to love each other under impossible circumstances.
Director: Sarah Polley
Main Cast: Julie Christie, Gordon Pinsent, Olympia Dukakis
Runtime: 110 minutes
IMDb Rating: 7.5
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