Max may no longer have HBO in its name, but it does have the movie library of HBO, as well as nearly a century’s worth of Warner Bros. Pictures films, to draw upon. That makes Max one of the prime streaming destinations, especially for underrated movies that didn’t get enough love when they were in theaters.
This month, our selections include a game-changing performance by Jennifer Lawrence, a remake of a cinema classic, and one of the seminal crime thrillers starring the iconic Michael Caine. These are the three underrated movies on Max that you need to watch in November.
While Jennifer Lawrence shot to prominence after headlining The Hunger Games, her real ascension to stardom began two years earlier in Winter’s Bone, a little-seen drama that earned Lawrence her first Oscar nomination for Best Actress at only 20 years old. Lawrence stars as Ree Dolly, a teenager who has been forced into the role of the provider for her family due to her mother’s mental health and the fact that her father, Jessup, is nowhere to be found.
That’s the problem Ree faces, since Jessup is facing charges for making meth, and his bail bond put the family home up as collateral. Ree is informed that the family will lose what little they have if her father doesn’t show up for his trial. Thus, Ree has to take it upon herself to investigate his disappearance by diving into the criminal underworld in order to determine if her father is alive or dead.
Watch Winter’s Bone on Max.
The original 1962 adaptation of The Manchurian Candidate is such a classic film that the 2004 remake doesn’t get enough credit for being a great movie in its own right. In this version, the details have changed, but the core of the story remains. During the Gulf War, Raymond Prentiss Shaw (Liev Schreiber) and his army unit went missing in Kuwait. When they reemerged, Shaw was lionized for his heroism and placed on a political path that has landed him in Congress and on the short list to being the next vice president.
However, Maj. Bennett Marco (Denzel Washington) is slowly waking up to the realization that both he and Shaw, as well as the rest of the surviving members of their unit, were captured and brainwashed by Manchurian Global for an unknown purpose. Shaw’s mother, Sen. Eleanor Prentiss Shaw (Meryl Streep), is pulling her son’s strings on behalf of Manchurian. And if Marco can’t prove that the conspiracy is real, then the presidency itself may soon be controlled by Manchurian.
Watch The Manchurian Candidate on Max.
Michael Caine has been such a magnificent elder statesman actor that it’s easy to forget that he’s been doing this since 1950. Caine was a young man of 38 years when Get Carter hit theaters in 1971. This is one of the movies that established Caine’s legend, thanks to his portrayal of the title character, Jack Carter. Jack is a gangster who has had enough of his life of crime, which is why he plots his escape alongside Anna (Britt Ekland).
But before the lovers can put their getaway plan into motion, Jack is distracted from his plan by the death of his brother, Frank, which has been ruled an accident by the police. Unconvinced of those findings, and undaunted by the warnings his bosses, Sid (John Bindon) and Gerald Fletcher (Terence Rigby), Jack begins his own investigation into Frank’s death. And judging by the people who are suddenly targeting him, Jack has just kicked the proverbial hornet’s nest.
Watch Get Carter on Max.