We’re halfway through 2023, and countless movies have already graced the screens, with some receiving massive critical and commercial acclaim while the rest were either global disasters or mediocre productions. In fact, every month has seen at least of few of the mix, which, while not on the caliber of being the year’s best, entertained the audiences enough to get them through the day.
In particular, the last month has seen a tremendous upsurge in the release of high-quality films such as Extraction 2, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, The Boogeyman, The Lesson and (debatably) The Flash. It should be noted that although many of the anticipated movies have already been released, many more are just waiting for the right time to indulge the viewers in a series of surprises. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of the best movies of this month, which range through all genres from comedy to action.
The Flood (July 14)
If there isn’t a creature feature on the calendar, it won’t be a properly fun movie month, no matter how many anticipated films are released. Luckily for us, The Flood has sneaked its way into July’s best horror movies with its scary premise based around ravenous alligators.
The story takes place in a Louisiana prison when massive hurricane floods unleash something far more terrifying than rising water levels in front of the survivors: a relentless horde of hungry alligators of abnormal size. With no way out, the prisoners and guards form an alliance to fight their way out in hopes of surviving the calamity.
Bird Box Barcelona (July 14)
Bird Box, which was released in 2018, was an instant success for Netflix, and many fans wondered why there wasn’t ever a sequel produced for this spectacular horror thriller. To their delight, after five years, a spin-off titled Bird Box Barcelona, which takes place in Europe during the same timeline, has been brought into the light through Netflix.
The story follows a business manager named Sebastian who, during the apocalypse, unites with his young daughter Anna and tries to fight their way through the barren streets of Barcelona in the hopes of finding a sanctuary where they may be free of all the terror. However, has it ever been that simple in the world of Bird Box?
Quicksand (July 14)
Movies about survival expose audiences to harsh realities even more so than the thrilling adventures they hope to see. The upcoming thriller film Quicksand depicts just that with its story showcasing the worst scenarios one could ever find themselves in the wild.
The movie stars Carolina Gaitan and Allan Hawco as an American married couple on the verge of divorce. During one of their work conferences, the couple hikes through a rainy forest which ends with them getting trapped in quicksand. With no one to help, the couple struggles for their survival in the sinking sand while dealing with a venomous snake.
Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part One (July 12)
With Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part One being the longest installment in the franchise with a runtime of two hours and 43 minutes, the stakes are higher this time around. Even though Tom Cruise is still riding on the success of Top Gun: Maverick, this seventh Mission Impossible film is expected to hit the fandom with quite a few surprises.
While the movie’s plot has never been made clear and remains a mystery to some point, Ethan Hunt will once again fight against a global threat, but this time for the benefit of both the world and his companions.
Insidious: The Red Door (July 7)
The Insidious franchise has evolved with each entry and proved the further you travel, the more terrifying and gruesome the journey will get. Furthermore, each film in the franchise has revolved around an appalling spiritual realm known as “The Further,” and the fifth installment, Insidious: The Red Door, decided to take the adventure to the next level with its frightening setting.
The movie will see the return of the Lambert family, who only appeared in the first two films but were absent in the subsequent ones. This time, Josh (Patrick Wilson) and Dalton (Ty Simpkins) will muster their unimaginable courage to traverse into the depths of The Further to confront the demons that lurk within.
Joy Ride (July 7)
Numerous films have tackled the concept of Asian immigrants trying their best to adjust after moving to Western countries like the US, but most don’t specifically emphasize the issue. In the upcoming film Joy Ride, we have a similar theme with the actors Ashley Park (Emily in Paris), Sherry Cola (Good Trouble), Stephanie Hsu (Everything Everywhere All at Once), and Sabrina Wu. The surprisingly dirty, raunchy, hard-R comedy breaks down stereotypes and assumptions in hilarious fashion.
The Out-Laws (July 7)
The Out-Laws is one of the most anticipated comedy films this year, directed by Tyler Spindel and produced by Adam Sandler. The film stars Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries), Pierce Brosnan (Tomorrow Never Dies), and Adam Devine (Workaholics), and follows a bank manager who is about to get engaged to the love of his life.
However, he soon finds out that a group of criminals known as “Ghost Bandits” had robbed his bank, and he suspects that his future in-laws are involved. Given the producer’s track record of success in the comedy genre, The Out-Laws should be an intriguing addition to the month’s lineup.
The Crusades (July 7)
Teenage can be pretty exciting for many people, especially if they have friends who can organize rocking parties on weekends and love affairs to help them get through those cumbersome emotional years. The upcoming comedy film with the tagline, “Love knows no age,” brings in the realities of high school where three friends at Our Lady of the Crusades, an all-boys high school, learn that their school is merging with the rivals.
Knowing that their lives will take a worse turn once it happens, they form a pact to have one last epic weekend where they break the rules, have love affairs, and make even more rivals while having an immeasurable amount of fun. If you like teen comedies, The Crusades could be a great movie to watch this month.
Bad Girl Boogey (July 4)
This may not be the best time for Halloween slasher films to be released, but Bad Girl Boogey insists on hitting theaters as soon as possible. The film hopes to create an authentically queer portrait while still retaining the main features of the slasher subgenre: gore and grit.
In the movie, blood was shed by a person dressed in a parasitic mask cursed with black magic one Halloween. 16 years later, Angel (Lisa Fanto) lost their best friend at the hands of the same killer, and they’re hell-bent on tracking him down. However, before they attempt such a daring feat, they must be willing to face their fears and save the ones they hold dear before the killer gets to them first.
Sound of Freedom (July 4)
Movies based on true stories always bring something unpleasant and disturbing to the light, probably due to the belief that these things are happening somewhere in the world right now. Sound of Freedom is one such film that tackles the reality of unfortunate younger souls who get caught in sex trafficking and spend the rest of their lives hoping someone will come to their rescue.
In this action biography directed by Alejandro Monteverde, we follow a former government agent as he embarks on a perilous mission to rescue several children from becoming the victims of trafficking. The movie was deemed to be powerful and incredibly compelling by audiences, especially conservative and religious ones.