Binged all of Succession S3? Need something to watch while you wait for the rest of Euphoria S2 to release? DisneyPlus Hotstar has a ton of fantastic series, sure, but if you're looking for something quicker to watch, we've got you covered. Here are the 20 best films on the platform (as of January 2022):
Considered one of the finest crime thrillers in Malayalam cinema, this KG George film explores the behind-the-scenes drama of a travelling theatre group and the mysterious disappearance of their unpopular tabla player (Bharath Gopy).
James Mangold's Oscar-nominated underdog tale features exhilarating race sequences, but is first and foremost a crackling human drama centered on the bromance between gifted engineer Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) and racing maestro Ken Miles (Christian Bale).
After having been banned from travelling and making films in Iran, director Jafar Panahi poses as a taxi driver to film life in Tehran, where disjointed accounts of different passengers form a complete narrative.
A compelling fictional retelling of the last trial by combat in medieval France, Ridley Scott's film unravels from three conflicting perspectives — the knight Jean de Carrouges (Matt Damon), his wife Marguerite (Jodie Comer), and his friend Jacques Le Gris (Adam Driver), the man Marguerite has accused of rape.
Directed by Rajeev Ravi, the film spans decades tracing the lives of key characters in Kammatipaadam from childhood to middle age. Like Chinatown, the film is about the crimes and bodies that big cities are built on and the sins that become impossible to punish.
Produced and directed by Peter Jackson, this intimate documentary is both — a lovingly preserved part of history and a fascinating look at the creative process. It features never-before seen footage of The Beatles conceiving of, writing and rehearsing their 1970 album Let It Be.
Soul follows an aspiring Jazz musician (Jamie Foxx) who attempts to escape death. Yet another winning Pixar venture, the film hits you in all the right places with how it marries a whimsical animated adventure with humanity and meaning.
This James Gray film is a brooding space melodrama, in which blasting off from earth is less an adventure than a primal form of therapy. It follows Major Roy McBride (Brad Pitt), an astronaut grappling with the absence of his father, who went missing on a mission near Neptune years ago.
AG Amid Rajathandhiram's thriller, starring Veera Bahu and Regina Cassandra, is about a heist that goes awry. Even when the going gets serious, the film still manages to keep things light with its subtle comedy.
Ram Madhvani's captivating hijack drama keeps you in a state of constant panic and uncertainty before packing an emotional final wallop that's hard to shake off. Based on a real-life events, it stars Sonam Kapoor in a career-best performance as flight attendant Neerja Bhanot who saved countless passengers after terrorists took over the flight she was on.
Milind Rau's Netrikann, about a CBI officer (Nayanthara) who loses her eyesight, is a good example of how one gets an adaptation just right. It is based on the 2011 Korean film Blind, but the process of rooting the story in Chennai feels seamless and organic to the point that you forget it is a remake.
Pedro Almodovar's dramedy follows two sisters — one whose husband tried to rape their daughter and the other, who believes that she is seeing the spirit of their late mother. For a film that deals with a supposedly supernatural subject, it is really the story of unflinchingly bold women, a theme the director frequently returns to.
Bad Education tells the true story of Frank Tassone (Hugh Jackman) – a district superintendent of schools who got entangled in one of the largest thefts of school funds in history. It features a career-best performance from Hugh Jackman, who is terrific as the likeable but deeply manipulative Dr Tussone.
This twisty, inventive Malayalam thriller stars Mohanlal as Georgekutty, an ordinary man thrown into extraordinary circumstances, who decides he will do whatever it takes to save his family. Georgekutty, a cable operator, must rely on his formidable knowledge of movie plots to help cover up a murder and evade police detection.
When the Madrigals, a gifted family, discover that the magic surrounding their town is in danger, they must rely on their only non-magical member (Stephanie Beatriz) for a solution. Immersive and beautifully animated, the film features original music by Lin-Manuel Miranda.
This multi-narrative set in Mumbai and directed by Raj and DK traces the lives of several loveable characters, mixing humour with depth, romance and thrills. It remains fresh more than a decade after its release.
Deftly plotted and endlessly thrilling, Drew Goddard's noir thriller revolves around seven strangers who check into the El Royale hotel in 1969, only to find themselves more enmeshed in each other's lives than they planned.
Terrence Malik's film is about Austrian conscientious objector Franz Jägerstätter (August Diehl), who refused to fight for the Third Reich in World War II and was executed in 1943, when he was 36. Where another filmmaker might have focused on the dramatic twists of a life, Malick composes a hymn about suffering.
Krishna (Nani) and Mahalakshmi (Mehreen Pirzada) are childhood sweethearts who have managed to keep their romance secret from their families due to fear of opposition. At one level, the film is the age-old story of a coward becoming brave so he can fight for his love. But director Hanu Raghavapudi's unique treatment makes the film interesting.
Written by Anjali Menon and directed by Anwar Rasheed, Ustad Hotel is set in Kozhikode, one of the cultural capitals of Kerala, and digs into the warm bond between a granddad (Thilakan) and his globe-trotting grandson (Dulquer Salmaan) who share a love of food.
Free Guy plays out like Truman Show (1998) adapted for the Fortnite generation. It's a thoroughly silly, charming film about a videogame character (Ryan Reynolds) who realises he's trapped in a meaningless existence, and the woman (Jodie Comer) who breaks him out of it.
Bioscopewala, a thoughtful adaptation of Rabindranath Tagore's Kabuliwala, thrives on its little updates and changes to the original short story. This film, with its striking metaphors, explores the bittersweet contradictions of growing up.
Mukti Bhawan is a film about death but it teaches you about life. On the Ghats of Banaras, amidst corpses, debris, ancient rituals and ruins, director Shubhashish Bhutiani finds joy, laughter, tenderness and a unique serenity.
Sanjay Leela Bhansali's first film, bereft of decoration, scale and reputation, remains his most memorable. Khamoshi, about a woman adjusting to life with her speech and hearing-impaired parents, contains the filmmaker's familiar obsessions – grief, and the healing powers of music.
This Sriram Raghavan movie, with its world of seedy hotel rooms and highways, a bag of money and a blank-faced hero, contains all the pleasures of a film noir.