Amazon Prime Video: the best movies according to you, and the press reviews May 2021

We updated this selection with the best films from Prime Video’s catalog in May 2021.

After Netflix, it’s Amazon Prime Video’s turn to be entitled to selections from the best of its catalog. Today, Amazon’s SVoD platform is better known for its series than for the films it offers. This does not prevent it from regularly enriching its catalog with excellent feature films, even if “original” productions are still quite rare.

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Each month, you can find here an updated selection of the best movies showing on Amazon Prime Video. If you have any questions or suggestions about Monthly Chosen Ones, please feel free to comment on this article or let us know on CNET’s social media.

In May, the selection does not change. Usual Suspects always wins. On the press side, it’s Gladiator who wins, as spectators choose The Godfather. Into the Wild is the bonus movie of the month.

Before starting, a little methodological point:

  • In the following selection, two films are chosen in all subjectivity by the editorial staff. This is the platform’s best ever addition to the catalog and another landmark feature available on Prime Video. Then, failing to base ourselves solely on our own feelings, we also used that of others to make our choice.
  • The other “winners” are therefore the program best rated by the specialized media, and the other the best rated by subscribers. The first is the average of the scores assigned by four reference titles (Télérama, Les Inrockuptibles, Large Screen, Le Blog du cinéma). If one or more of them did not evaluate the selected program, we refer to the rating of another direct competitor. The second takes up the process with user evaluations from five sites well known to serial fans (Allociné, Sens Critique, Rotten Tomatoes, IMDB, Metacritic).

What are the best movies of the month on Amazon Prime Video (May 2021)?

1. A very good film to watch or re-watch in May

Usual Suspects: Fool’s Game

The summary of the film

It is complicated to summarize Usual Suspects without draining it of its essence. Just know that in a Californian port, a massacre took place aboard a cargo ship, then set on fire. Only two people survive: a Hungarian in a bad state because of the burns and Verbal Kint, a crook on the small week, crippled moreover.

His questioning is the common thread of the film. We quickly discover that behind the killings and the fire hides a coup set up by several criminals and a legend of organized crime …

A quick review

It is THE film not to be revealed, because it is famous for its reversal of the situation, the one which explains everything, but which also makes you doubt what you have seen. The spectator is like the policeman during the interrogation: he is suspended on the word of Verbal (the name is rather well chosen) to understand what happened.

We then enter a story within history. The scenario is clever and it blurs the tracks from the start, with its assemblage of characters ravaged by life: Fenster the misunderstood, McManus the borderline, Keaton the rogue, Kint the disabled or Hockney the pyromaniac firefighter.

From their first scene, that of the identification by the police, the five burst into laughter, a sequence that was not planned, but that director Bryan Singer kept for the film, believing it had potential. The stunt is then dismantled, and its protagonists go all over the place.

We try to relate to what Verbal Kint says to the police, but we are a little more confused by the arrival in the story of Keyser Söze, a bandit so elusive that we do not even know if he really existed .

This film is a paradoxical experience: the spectator is jostled, confused, stuck between the facts and how they are told. Until this famous denouement. It’s a feature film, see twice: once to experience the surprise, a second to understand how and why we were surprised.

  • Here’s a trailer for the movie:

2. The best feature film for critics

Gladiator: V for Vendetta

The summary of the film

Emperor Marcus Aurelius, near death, chooses his general, Maximus, to succeed him in power, and not his son, who bears his name badly, Commodus. The latter, outraged and jealous, assassinates his father, and asks Maximus to submit to him.

The latter refuses, escapes an assassination attempt, but loses everything that mattered to him. Then begins his long road to revenge …

A quick review

My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, Commander-in-Chief of the Armies of the North, General of the Legions Felix …“and you certainly know the sequel to that famous quote from Gladiator. If not, check out this superb film. This is your chance to see a feature film that has helped resuscitate the peplum genre. .

It performed so well at the box office that it boosted sales of literary works by Cicero and Marcus Aurelius. We called it the “gladiator effect“. Gladiator is in the line of another peplum, Spartacus (1960), with less historical accuracy, however.

Ridley Scott’s film revisits History, like Stanley Kubrick’s film, but adds a story, that of Maximus, a sort of representation of Roman culture, of a certain art of living, but also of values. Remember that Marcus Aurelius wants to give him the power so that he makes Rome a Republic.

Like Spartacus, he then enlisted as a gladiator and opposed an ultra-personal, and even bloodthirsty, conception of imperial power.

Ridley Scott, whose career will decline (a little) after this film (his Kingdom of Heaven, a peplum in the same vein, is however not at all at the same level), held, with Gladiator, its large epic fresco. A film to watch or watch again without a hint of hesitation.

  • Watch a preview of this excellent feature film below:

3. The best film according to the spectators

The Godfather: my family first

The summary of the film

New York in 1945. Don Vito Corleone is the leader of the clan of the same name, one of the five most powerful of the Big Apple. Nicknamed the “Godfather”, he manages family affairs with a masterful hand and knows how to be respected (and feared) by everyone.

One day, Solozzo, the leader of the Tattaglia clan, offers him a lucrative deal to sell drugs. Don Vito refuses, even if his son Sonny insists, and the mob boss almost gets murdered for it.

But the Godfather escapes and Solozzo is killed in retaliation by Michael, his second son. The feature film dwells on the habits and customs of the Corleone family, their way of managing their affairs, the close ties between the members of the clan and the succession of the Don.

A quick review

A classic among classics that is unanimous among press critics. Do we really have to present The Godfather ? Even today, feature films remain a benchmark in the seventh art.

Impossible not to underline the quality of the interpretation of the various actors: in the first role, Marlon Brando is masterful, like Al Pacino, Robert Duvall or James Caan in the skin of other first-rate characters.

The script is excellent because it does not always take the viewer to the terrain he expected. Who says film about the mafia often says action galore and endless shootings. There are, but it is far from being what strikes the most while viewing The Godfather.

The first installment of the trilogy focuses above all on the Corleone family, the inner workings of the clan, the way it operates and the ties that unite its members. The staging is perfect, it is thanks to this meticulous work by director Francis Ford Coppola that the film enjoys such a unique atmosphere.

There isn’t always a lot of action, but you don’t get bored for a moment. No doubt because diving into the New York Mafia is as brilliant as it is epic.

  • Discover the trailer of the cult film:

4. A very good bonus movie: Into the Wild

The summary of the film

Freshly graduated from a major American university, everything seems to smile on Christopher McCandless. Big cars, money, health insurance, pavilion in a wealthy suburb … If he sticks to the plan drawn by his parents, his future will be paved with all the riches that the American consumer society can offer.

Problem, he rejects this way of life altogether. On a whim, he sends all his savings to the OXFAM association and sets off on an adventure on the roads, without ever looking behind him.

A quick review

Film adaptation of the novel Journey to the end of loneliness by Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild is a powerful film and a very beautiful ode to freedom. Fifteen years later, Christopher McCandless’s journey has not aged a bit and we still contemplate with as much bliss the immense expanses crossed during his journey.

The story (inspired by real events) is a bit naïve, but maybe that’s also what makes its charm. The hero embodies an ideal of daring and emancipation. There is something rather fantastical about his decision to give up everything to leave civilization. It is one of those desires that we often think of, but that we never dare to satisfy.

In addition, Emile Hirsch who plays the hero is perfect in his role. Without ever doing too much, he perfectly testifies to the candor that lives in his character until the end of the road.

  • Here is a preview of this great feature film:

Why trust us

Each series or film recommended in our articles has been previously viewed by the editorial staff. Our choices are made independently and based on our expertise, the overall impression left by the work and a few key points. The script, the direction, the acting or the dialogues are part of it, among others. They allow you to get a good idea of ​​the quality (or not) of the future blockbuster of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney +, OCS and others.

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