Temperatures are rising, which means all the more reason to hole up indoors and get your Netflix on. This month, there are a ton of Smithsonian documentaries getting purged—which may or may not interest you—along with a pretty solid collection of romantic comedies, classic movies, and family-friendly musicals. Some pretty essential comedies will leave the streaming service come July 1st as well, including classics like Blazing Saddles and the original Batman film starring the late Adam West.
We can’t forget about the first six seasons of Futurama either, which like Bob’s Burgers a few months ago, was pulled by FOX. Even though there are many petitions circling the internet to save the series from Netflix abandonment, it’s not likely to make much of a difference, unfortunately. However, in between trying to nurse your crippling disappointment in humanity and trying to enjoy summer vacation, you’ll at least have plenty of excellent Netflix movies and TV shows to keep your company. These are the 15 Best Movies And TV Shows Leaving Netflix in July. Binge away, friends!
15. Futurama (Seasons 1-6)
There must be a sci-fi TV show curse. Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, and even Futurama all suffered the same fate—getting cancelled in their prime. Now, like the latter two, the majority of Futurama also won’t be available for multiple viewings on Netflix for much longer. That’s right; sadly, the rumors are true. Seasons 1-6 of Futurama are leaving Netflix as of July 1st. Unsurprisingly, those are the seasons produced by FOX, leaving the later seasons produced by Comedy Central untouched.
While diehard fans of the original episodes will certainly feel pangs of disappointment, some of the most memorable episodes of Futurama were in that last season. Remember when Bender brought Calculon back from the dead? Or when the whole cast were childish, mini versions of themselves? Those episodes are still available for binging to your heart’s content. Plus, now we have the Futurama mobile game, Futurama: World of Tomorrow, to look forward to, which will release right before the FOX seasons leave Netflix. There’s always a silver lining, or in this case, a shiny metal ass.
14. Blazing Saddles
One of the greatest comedies of our time, Blazing Saddles, is set to make a swift exit next month. Mel Brooks’ Western satire about a black sheriff in a racist town will make your sides split from laughter. As always, there are plenty of quotable one-liners in the film, in addition to Mel Brooks regulars like Gene Wilder, Harvey Korman, and Madeline Kahn. It’s full of comedy genius, poking fun at whitey and at bigotry in general.
If everything has to be PC, or you’re easily offended, this might not be the film for you. Everyone loves a good fart joke, though, right? Well, Blazing Saddles has an entire fart sequence guaranteed to make you giggle like a five year old no matter what your age or sense of humor. Although we can certainly thank the man who also brought us The Princess Bride and Young Frankenstein, beloved comedian Richard Pryor also co-wrote the screenplay. That’s right, you’re getting material cooked up by not one, but two comedy legends. Put this on your watch-list immediately.
13. Kevin Hart: Laugh At My Pain
It’s hard to believe that around ten years ago, no one knew Kevin Hart’s name. Nowadays, he’s selling out every tour, starring in movies, and putting out stand-up special after stand-up special because the demand for him is just that high. Midway into his career, he taped a special at the end of his 2011 tour, Laugh At My Pain. After ninety cities, he ended up at Los Angeles’ Nokia Theater, where he performed for 15,000 people. Produced by Comedy Central, the special was released in theaters for a few months before going to DVD and streaming services.
Released only a year after his previous stand-up special put him on the map, Laugh At My Pain highlights everything funny about Hart’s love life and family life. In the first fifteen minutes, we get to see where he grew up in Philadelphia—meeting some of the people that made him who he is. He plays up his ego and how fame got to his head, but it’s all just an appetizer for the real material. While it doesn’t quite reach the level of hilarity as his previous two specials, it’s still a funny and intimate look into the mind (and heart!) of Kevin Hart.
12. MacGyver (Seasons 1-7)
MacGyver was such a ridiculous show. The guy refuses to handles guns, yet he was in the Army Special Forces as a bomb tech? Granted, that’s the entire premise and what actually makes it so awesome. He uses his ingenuity to solve problems, preferring peace over violence. All he needs in life is a Swiss Army knife and some duct tape and he can patch up the world. The man is a genius. Who else would have thought to stop a radiator leak by cracking an egg over it? (What’s even more amazing is that the egg trick actually works. It was proven on an episode of MythBusters!)
Granted, the show can come off as a bit cheesy now—20+ years after it first aired—but it’s become such a TV classic that you just have to binge as much of the original as possible (oh yeah, there’s a reboot on CBS, but meh). A new word was invented because of the show. More than likely, you’ve heard someone say they’re going to MacGyver their way out of a situation, or MacGyver something into something else. Few shows have that kind of bragging rights, which is all the more reason to give this throwback series a chance.
11. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
Marilyn Monroe starred in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes at the height of her career in the 1950s. She hadn’t even hit thirty yet, but her role as Lorelei Lee has become one of her most iconic. Her character is a sweetly innocent, ditzy, gold-digging blonde on a mission to get rich—a typecasting which she became known for.
Monroe and her co-star Jane Russell travel on a French cruise while trying to find the right man to marry. They’re polar opposites. Monroe a blonde, Russell a brunette, and they’re supposed to represent the two types of women out there. While Monroe marries for money, Russell marries for love (although her attractions could be just as superficial).
The film also features the musical number “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend,” which is awe-inspiring in Technicolor even by today’s standards. Many a young actress and singer have mimicked the look and feel of that number, and Monroe’s image in general (Madonna & Lady Gaga, anyone?). All in all, classic movie buffs and Marilyn fans will eat up Gentlemen Prefer Blondes in all its colorful, sparkling glory.
10. Hip Hop: The Furious Force of Rhymes
We don’t often talk about music documentaries (or documentaries in general) here at Screen Rant, but this one warrants a mention—and a watch. Hip Hop: The Furious Force of Rhymes, traces the birth of not only a musical genre, but a movement and way of life. Hip hop has inspired the subjugated and disadvantaged, giving them a means to speak about the injustices they’ve experienced. Although it was born in the South Bronx over forty years ago, the rhythms and subject matter continue from generation to generation.
One of the many Smithsonian Channel historical documentaries leaving Netflix this month, it’s also by far one of the best. You’ll hear stories of hip hop’s impact across the world, with interviews from the director and musicians/lyricists from countries like Palestine, France, and Senegal. While it’s of obvious interest to music fans, anyone with an interest in the changing geopolitical landscape will find the stories of these rappers surprising and completely fascinating.
9. While You Were Sleeping
Sandra Bullock works best as the slightly quirky girl next door who often finds herself in awkward or troubling predicaments. In While You Were Sleeping, she’s the former—mistakenly identified as the fiancé of a man in a coma (Peter Gallagher), whom she rescued from an oncoming train. Before she can correct anyone, she’s welcomed into the man’s family, as his condition has brought them all together. Little does she know the wacky ride she’s on will really lead to love, although not to whom she expected.
While the film does become over the top at times, it features some pretty big comedic names like Peter Boyle, Glynis Johns, and of course, Bill Pullman. There’s a lot of great situational comedy, and Bullock is so endearing you can’t help but fall in love with her. As romantic comedies go, While You Were Sleeping has more charm than gag-worthy romance. While Bullock’s character does live happily ever after in the end, it’s not without a few snags and lessons learned in the process. Netflix and chill this one ASAP.
8. The Glades
Like a hybrid of House and CSI, The Glades features a main character who constantly asserts his genius when solving crimes. There’s a bit of a Sherlockian vibe as well, although Jim (Matt Passmore) stands to benefit from more charm and less cynicism. Unlike both House and Sherlock, however, Jim is a lot less concerned with doing his job than he is with playing golf. Or telling people what to do. Or making out with his love interest, Callie (Kiele Sanchez). The Glades is not your typical police procedural, although what it does take from similar shows served it well.
Aside from the weekly mysteries, what resonated most with fans was the romance between Jim and Callie. There’s no shortage of fan videos on YouTube depicting their intimate moments. Obsessed much? However, there’s something to that fascination. When you watch the two of them onscreen, it’s impossible not to grin when they smile at each other. That chemistry drove the show, but unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to save it beyond the season four cliffhanger. Nevertheless, it’s worthy of your time and is guaranteed to make you glad you don’t live in Florida.
7. An Unmarried Woman
Jill Clayburgh earned a Best Actress nomination for her role as Erica in An Unmarried Woman. Although she’s not a household name, Clayburgh has appeared alongside legends like Richard Pryor, Gene Wilder, Donald Sutherland, and Burt Reynolds over her career. This was her defining role as a conflicted woman whose husband leaves her for someone younger and prettier. In her newly found independence, Erica allows herself to feel and do, redefining who she is and always was, despite sharing her life with someone.
Basically, this is the perfect film to watch after a breakup (especially if you’re a woman). It will empower you to embrace your single status and explore your sexuality, which Erica bravely does herself after having only slept with one man for the past sixteen years. But aside from all the heartfelt moments of vulnerability, it also has a great pre-Risky Business underwear scene that’s really fun to watch. Gather up the gal-pals and give this one a chance.
6. El Dorado
Consistently ranking as one of the best Westerns of all time, El Dorado stars John Wayne and Robert Mitchum. At the time, they were top-billing stars when standard Westerns were still in vogue, although spaghetti-westerns had already begun to steal their thunder. Interestingly enough, the film is named after an Edgar Allan Poe poem, which depressingly equates the search for El Dorado as a search for death.
While there are definitely more than a few deaths in the film, it’s more about restoring law and order to the town. A frontier war of sorts has been going on between two rival ranchers, and it’s up to John Wayne and a pre-Sonny Corleone James Caan to set things straight. Although El Dorado came later in Wayne’s career, he’s as magnetic as ever, inspiring the cowboy lifestyle with every viewing. Tough as nails, Wayne’s Cole Thornton character also survives near paralysis in a time when medicine was nowhere near equipped to handle that kind of injury. Basically, he’s the Old West’s very own superhero, saving the day in the nick of time.
The heartwarming story of a small French village brought together by, what else, chocolate. Chocolat has the pacing of a novel, and it is in fact based on one written by Joanne Harris. There’s some narration, but primarily, it moves along with the characters and their desires, much like Juliette Binoche’s character does.
If the name alone makes your mouth water in anticipation, you’d better have some chocolate handy while you watch. Juliette Binoche plays a chocolate witch of sorts (Vianne Rocher) who blows into town with her young daughter (kinda like Mary Poppins). She just happens to know exactly what kind of chocolate each of the townspeople will enjoy, which ends up bringing them together, despite the initial objections of their mayor.
Johnny Depp also arrives by boat looking very gypsy-like, pre-Pirates of The Caribbean, and steals Vianne’s heart away. Basically, Chocolat is Willy Wonka for adults, but it’s more romance than fantasy (although it has elements of that too).
Get ready to turn up the nostalgia with a viewing of the 1982 classic film adaptation of Annie. Originally based on a comic strip from the New York Daily News in the 1920s—which took its name from a Victorian-era poem—if you’re going to watch one of the many versions of the 1970s musical, this is it. What better way to spend a weekday night then singing all the lyrics to “Tomorrow” and “It’s the Hard Knock Life” while pretending to scrub your floors?
It’s a blast watching little curly-headed orphan Annie go from rags to riches, but not before the bad guys try to use her in a con. Even if the kiddie storyline isn’t your taste, Annie’s worth watching just for the dynamic between Carol Burnett (Miss Hannigan), Tim Curry (Rooster Hannigan), and Bernadette Peters (Lily St. Regis). Their version of “Easy Street” is pretty much the best thing ever.
Based on the children’s novel by Brian Selznick, Hugo tells the story of another orphan—living in a French train station—who unravels a cinematic mystery. Directed by Martin Scorsese, the film features an all-star cast including Ben Kingsley, Sacha Baron Cohen, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Lee, and Jude Law. While it was marketed as a family-friendly kids film, the stellar acting and imaginative visuals lets you suspend your disbelief with child-like wonder no matter how old you are.
It’s a shame if you missed out on seeing it in 3D upon its release, which really is the best way to see it, but Hugo is one of those films that will amaze you no matter what. Essentially, it’s a tribute to the history of cinema; in particular, French cinema before the 1930s. Film buffs will get a kick out of the plot surrounding famed director and illusionist Georges Méliès, who created some of the very first horror and sci-fi films in existence. It probably would have won Best Picture at the Academy Awards had it not been up against another film paying tribute to the history of cinema—The Artist.
2. The Last Samurai
From screenwriter John Logan—who has written some of the most iconic films of the past fifteen years (Gladiator, anyone?)—The Last Samurai will no longer be available on Netflix come July 3rd. Arguably one of Tom Cruise’s best roles, but generally an underrated film all around, The Last Samurai was largely overlooked when it came out, having been overshadowed by Lord of The Rings: The Return of the King, which swept awards season.
Nevertheless, the film has some of the most epic and heartbreaking battle sequences around, inspired by true events surrounding the death of feudalism in Japan. It’s by no means 100% historically accurate, but it’s an interesting peek into traditional Japanese culture and the ancient way of the samurai.
Aside from cheering on the last remaining samurai who attempt to fight back against westernization, you’ll likely find yourself in awe of the costume work and cinematography on display as well. There’s even a bit of romance sprinkled in among the violence, which (surprisingly) doesn’t take away from the story. Don’t be afraid of the two and a half hour run-time. It’s a poignant film that deserves more love than it gets.
After Adam West’s death over a week ago, we’re not sure this one will stick. Nevertheless, Batman is scheduled for a Netflix departure in July. For many, West was the original and best Batman, expertly portraying the campy, over-the-top comic book humor while still managing to be sexy and cool as all hell.
The film was a companion piece to the television show, which ran for 120 episodes in the mid-60s. It features all of the classic Batman villains we know and love like The Joker (Cesar Romero), The Penguin (Burgess Meredith), The Riddler (Frank Gorshin), and a purr-fect Catwoman (Lee Merriweather). Although the premise is somewhat ridiculous (a weapon that dehydrates people, really?), it’s a real treat to see these four supervillains working in conjunction with one another.
Be prepared for countless Bat-puns, more Bat-vehicles then really necessary, and of course, all those comic-book style ‘biffs,’ ‘bangs,’ and ‘pows.’ Just don’t forget your shark repellant!
Which of these soon-to-be-gone titles just shot to the top of your Netflix queue? Let us know in the comments.
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