By Phillip Swann
The TV Answer Man – @tvanswerman

HBO Max today has added 40 new movies to its streaming lineup. Here are the three best, in my humble opinion:

Alpha Dog
Based on a true story, the 2006 drama stars Emile Hirsch as a young drug dealer in a Los Angeles suburb who kidnaps the brother (Anton Yelchin) of a customer who won’t pay his debts. What begins as a truth or dare situation ultimately spins out of control, leading to chaos and tragedy.

Alpha Dog, which has an incredible supporting cast of stars in the making (Justin Timberlake, Olivia Wilde, Amanda Seyfried, Ben Foster, Amber Heard), is an absorbing commentary on young egos and misdirected passions. You think it couldn’t happen to you, but this movie says it can happen to any family.

This underrated film, which is directed and written by Nick Cassavetes (John’s son), also has Bruce Willis and Sharon Stone in support. Don’t miss it.

The winner of the 2020 Oscar for Best Picture. The drama, which is based in South Korea, is the story of a lower-class family that tricks a wealthy family into hiring them as their personal assistants. However, the scam backfires when the lower-class family encounters an unexpected turn of events once inside the luxurious house.

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Directed and co-written by Bong Joon Ho (The Host, Okja), Parasite is an original and clever tale of intrigue, class warfare and Hitchcockian surprises., which tracks critical reviews, gives the movie a score of 99 out of a possible 100 based on a survey of 477 critics.

“An urgent, brilliantly layered look at timely social themes, Parasite finds writer-director Bong Joon Ho in near-total command of his craft,” the site states.

Step Brothers
The 2008 comedy, directed by Adam McKay, co-stars Will Farrell and John C. Reilly as two grown men who are forced to live and act as brothers when their single parents marry. The crazy concept somehow works thanks to Farrell and Reilly’s comic chemistry, seen earlier in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. There are also some delightful supporting performances from Seth Rogen, Kathryn Hahn and Horatio Sanz. Step Brothers is fun for fun’s sake.

Here is the complete list of new films added today to HBO Max. (Movies with HBO in parenthesis were also added to the cable/satellite version of HBO.

Absolute Power, 1997 (HBO)
Alpha Dog, 2006 (HBO)
American Honey, 2016 (HBO)
As Tears Go By, 1988
Betrayed, 1988 (HBO)

Black Mass, 2015 (HBO)
Blue Valentine, 2010 (HBO)
Calvary, 2014 (HBO)
Coffee and Cigarettes, 2003
Daddy Day Care, 2003 (HBO)

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Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears A Who!, 2008 (HBO)
Dreamer: Inspired By A True Story, 2005 (HBO)
Eat Pray Love, 2010
The Forbidden Kingdom, 2008 (HBO)
Heartbreakers, 2001 (HBO)

The Hole In The Ground, 2019 (HBO)
Hustle & Flow, 2005 (HBO)
I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry, 2007 (HBO)
The Karate Kid, 2010
Kingsman: The Secret Service, 2014 (HBO)

The Last Castle, 2001 (HBO)
Lord Of Illusions, 1995 (HBO) (Director’s Cut)
Lucky You, 2007 (HBO)
Man Of The House, 2005 (HBO)
Mid90s, 2019 (HBO)

Midnight Sun, 2018 (HBO)
Mirror Mirror, 2012 (HBO)
Mirrors, 2008  (Extended Version) (HBO)
My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, 2016 (HBO)
Paper Moon, 1973 (HBO)

Paranoia, 2013 (HBO)
Parasite, 2019 (HBO)
The Rookie, 2002 (HBO)
Shark Night 3D, 2011 (HBO)
Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow, 2004 (HBO)

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Soapdish, 1991 (HBO)
Some Like It Hot, 1959 (HBO)
Sorority Row, 2009 (HBO)
Step Brothers, 2008
Windtalkers, 2002 (HBO)

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— Phillip Swann