The Best Movies To See in Theaters – New Movies Out Now

It may not officially be the summer blockbuster season yet, but with Michael Bay’s latest addition to the Transformers universe, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, it may as well as be. After all, with its cacophony of action, explosions, and souped-up sports cars capable of transforming into a variety of unique creatures, nothing sums up a summer blockbuster quite like the Transformers series.

Aside from Rise of the Beasts, this week may not boast the usual number of high-profile releases – but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of fantastic lesser-known movies arriving in theaters. For starters, there’s the moving Brian Cox-led drama film, Mending the Line, alongside the fairly decent family film, The Secret Kingdom, and the high-stakes thriller, 97 Minutes.

Along with those titles, you’ll also have time to catch up on some of the best releases from the previous few months, like the animated superhero film, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, the Disney live-action film, The Little Mermaid, and the third and final entry in James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy.

Here are all the movies you can find playing at your local movie theaters starting this weekend.

Updated: June 8.

Popular New Releases

All the movies that have audiences buzzing or that fans have been eagerly awaiting for months.

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts

Pete Davidson and Anthony Ramos in Transformers: Rise of the Beasts (2023)
Image Credit: cedric dumler/Paramount Pictures.

The seventh entry in the Transformers saga, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts follows in the footsteps of its immediate predecessor, Bumblebee, once again acting as a prequel set before the events of the original 2007 Transformers.

In the 1990s, Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen) leads a group of metamorphosing robot-animal hybrids known as the Maximals to Earth, searching for a key before it falls into the hands of the planet-devouring god, Unicron (Colman Domingo).

While not quite as critically successful as Bumblebee, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts has earned mostly mixed reviews, with particular praise aimed at its vocal performances and its sympathetic human characters (centered around Anthony Ramos’s financially struggling veteran). Many critics have also noted the movie is a major step-up from the franchise lows of Age of Extinction and The Last Knight.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 66%
IMDb score: 6.7

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (2023)
Image Credit: Sony Animation.

It’s been five long years since Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, and yet fans have continued to express pointed excitement at the prospect of seeing another addition to the cinematic Spider-Verse. Fortunately, viewers’ patience has paid off, with the newest entry in Sony’s franchise, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, finally hitting theaters this weekend.

A year after his previous adventure, teenager Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) once again helps the alternative versions of Spider-Man stop an otherworldly threat from destroying each and every one of their separate universes.

Repeating the momentous success of its predecessor, Across the Spider-Verse has earned all-around acclaim from critics, who have praised its colorful design, stellar action, impressive vocal performances, and its cliffhanger ending (which perfectly sets up its upcoming sequel, Beyond the Spider-Verse).

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 95%
IMDb score: 9.1

The Boogeyman

Sophie Thatcher and Vivien Lyra Blair in The Boogeyman (2023)
Image Credit: Patti Perret / 20th Century Studios.

Since the publication of his debut novel, Carrie, in 1974, Stephen King has been a treasure trove of horror, with many of his novels and stories over the years finding their way onto film. This weekend, the adaptation of King’s short story, “The Boogeyman,” joins the long list of movies based on King’s work, existing side by side with classics like The Shining, It, and Misery.

Following the loss of their mother, two girls (Sophie Thatcher and Vivien Lyra Blair) and their father (Chris Messina) are haunted by a demonic entity feeding off their shared grief and suffering.

The Boogeyman may fall flat at times when it comes to living up to King’s rich text, but the movie’s performances and atmospheric horror have helped it draw in positive reviews among critics.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 65%
IMDb score: 6.3

The Little Mermaid

Halle Bailey in The Little Mermaid (2023)
Image Credit: Walt Disney Pictures.

For the past decade, Disney has been hard at work remaking classic films from their past using a mixture of live-action and CGI technology. Fresh off the recent release of Peter Pan & Wendy last month, this weekend will see the newest arrival of these Disney remakes in the form of The Little Mermaid.

Wanting to experience life in the human world, a musically-gifted mermaid (Halle Bailey) sells her voice to a wicked sea witch (Melissa McCarthy) in exchange for human legs, allowing her to venture onto dry land and meet the alluring Prince Eric (Jonah Hauer-King).

While perhaps not as momentous or as singularly great as the 1989 animated film it’s based upon, 2023’s The Little Mermaid has earned largely mixed to positive reviews. Many critics have complimented the movie for its performances and stunning visuals, though others have said the film lacks the same imagination and playfulness that made the original film so remarkable in the first place.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 71%
IMDb score: 8.0

Fast X

Vin Diesel, Jason Momoa, Brie Larson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson
Image Credit: Universal Studios.

With the son of a powerful Brazilian crime lord (Jason Mamoa) looking for revenge, Dominic Torreto (Vin Diesel) is forced to leave his retirement behind to protect his family and former crew.

With preliminary plans having been announced for an eleventh and twelfth multi-party entry to wrap up the series, it seems that the Fast & Furious series is taking its gradual first steps towards a definitive conclusion.

Before its epic finale, however, the hit crime series returns with its latest installment, Fast X, delivering the same high-speed thrills fans look for and crave in a Fast & Furious film. Though drawing in weaker reviews than its predecessors, most critics believe it packs enough of a punch to satisfy longtime viewers of the Diesel-led series.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 57%
IMDb score: 6.2

Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 3

Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Sean Gunn, Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, and Pom Klementieff in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023)
Image Credit: Marvel Studios.

Almost assuredly the final film in the Guardians of the Galaxy series (or at least the last one that will be directed by James Gunn), Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 acts as a fitting swan song to the original lineup of the titular Guardians, bidding farewell to the ragtag superhero group audiences have spent the past nine years bonding with.

As they continue to grieve for the loss of the original Gamora (Zoe Saldaña), the Guardians of the Galaxy defend the universe from the mad scientist (Chukwudi Iwuji) responsible for Rocket’s (Bradley Cooper) creation.

After the mixed response of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has been credited with helping Marvel get back on track, returning to the MCU’s successful blend between comedy and action. Most critics have deemed it a satisfying ending in the Guardians trilogy, rounding out Gunn and the cast’s time in the series in the best way imaginable.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 79%
IMDb score: 8.4

You Hurt My Feelings

Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Tobias Menzel in You Hurt My Feelings (2023)
Image Credit: A24.

A24 may not be altogether well-known for family dramas or comedy films, but thanks to recent movies like Close, Showing Up, When You Finish Saving the World, and You Hurt My Feelings, the powerhouse indie production company is starting to gain a foothold in the dramedy genre.

Beth (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) is a successful novelist locked in a happy but boring marriage to her therapist husband, Don (Tobias Menzies). Overhearing Don’s true thoughts regarding her latest book, Beth can’t help but feel betrayed, threatening the otherwise peaceful harmony of their relationship.

A film about the mundane lies we tell our loved ones in the relationships that matter most in our lives, You Hurt My Feelings has been universally praised by critics. Many have called it a smart, funny, and heartily honest depiction of married individuals approaching middle age, and a brilliant follow-up to director Nicole Holofcener’s similarly well-received Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 95%
IMDb score: 7.2

Other Movies of Note

Notable films that will likely continue playing for only a few more weeks.

Book Club: The Next Chapter

Candice Bergen, Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, and Mary Steenburgen in Book Club: The Next Chapter (2023)
Image Credit: Focus Features.

In 2018, ‘70s/‘80s comedy icons Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, Candice Burgen, and Mary Steenburgen teamed up to collaborate on the generally well-received comedy, Book Club. Five years later, the foursome return to the screen with its later sequel, Book Club: The Next Chapter.

Journeying abroad to Italy for their next book club, four elderly friends (Fonda, Keaton, Burgen, and Steenburgen) become embroiled in the adventure of a lifetime, taking them on a madcap journey that reveals some long-dormant secrets along the way.

Taking the action of its narrative to the wonderfully scenic city of Venice, Book Club: The Next Chapter gets points for shaking up its main storyline, but otherwise earns the same mixed response as its predecessor. While the four leads themselves are enjoyable to watch together, the film’s middling humor and general corniness hasn’t done much to win critics over.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 45%
IMDb score: 5.7


Image Credit: Charades.

She may not be an altogether universally recognized actor yet, but Margaret Qualley has to be among the most exciting young actors working today. For clear evidence of her imminent talents, just look at her masterful performance in the new dark comedy, Sanctuary.

Recently promoted to an influential new position at his company, a businessman (Christopher Abbott) tries to end his ongoing sessions with a dominatrix (Margaret Qualley), only to realize she has no intention of letting him go quite so easily.

Earning overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics, Sanctuary has been praised for its ability to keep you guessing, and for creating a budding sense of suspense in spite of its limited setting and characters. Abbott and Qualley are sensational in their lead performances, the entire film delivering thought-provoking questions related to power, romance, and success.

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%
IMDb score: 7.2

The Super Mario Bros. Movie

Super Mario Bros Movie
Image Credit: Nintendo & Universal.

Mario (Chris Pratt) and Luigi (Charlie Day) are two everyday plumbers who travel to a magical world filled with fantastic creatures. After Luigi is kidnapped by the Koopa king Bowser (Jack Black), Mario teams with several residents of the Mushroom Kingdom to rescue him.

Movies and TV shows based on beloved video games are a notoriously tricky thing to pull off. Sometimes, the results can be extraordinary, surpassing the expectations of gaming fans everywhere (as with HBO’s recent Last of Us series). Other times, they completely fail to capitalize on its premise, ushering in atrocious movies like 1993’s Super Mario Bros.

Transecting this fine line is the 2023 Super Mario Bros. Movie, Illumination’s latest animated film. Though the animation is indeed stunning and its adherence to its source material has been positively received, many critics felt the movie’s plot was on the thinner side.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 53%
IMDb score: 7.5

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret.

Rachel McAdams and Abby Ryder Fortson in Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret. (2023)
Image Credit: Dana Hawley/Lionsgate

Taken from Judy Blume’s famed book of the same name, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. may have taken years to get off the ground, but the final product shows the film was well worth the wait.

Moving from New York City to suburban New Jersey, pre-teen Margaret (Abby Ryder Fortson) tries to decide which religion is right for her, torn between her mother’s (Rachel McAdams) Christian background and her father’s (Benny Safdie) Jewish upbringing.

Rather than reverting to the same old nostalgic presentation of one’s teenage years, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. has been praised for its frank depiction of puberty and the existential worries older children face as they cross over into adolescence.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%
IMDb score: 7.6

Evil Dead Rise

Lily Sullivan in Evil Dead Rise (2023) Cabin in the woods
Image Credit: New Line Cinema

It’s been five long years since the end of Ash vs. Evil Dead and an entire decade since its previous cinematic installment, but on April 21, the Evil Dead franchise returned with the most recent addition, Evil Dead Rise.

Reading from a strange book found in their apartment basement, a family is haunted by a supernatural presence, who appears to be possessing the otherwise kind-natured mother (Alyssa Sutherland).

Like 2013’s The Evil Dead, none of the trademark dark comedy is present in Evil Dead Rise. While some fans might miss the zany one-liners of series protagonist Ash Williams (Bruce Campbell), Evil Dead Rise proves that Evil Dead is still one of the most terrifying series in mainstream horror, most critics lauding it as a satisfying expansion of the series’ universe.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 96%
IMDb score: 7.7

Beau Is Afraid

Joaquin Phoenix in Beau is Afraid
Image Credit: A24

From Ari Aster – the director behind Hereditary and Midsommar – comes another highly unconventional horror success: Beau Is Afraid, perhaps the darkest and strangest of Aster’s films to date.

Planning to see his celebrated business magnate mother (Patti LuPone), the anxious Beau (Joaquin Phoenix) confronts some of his worst fears, enduring nightmare after nightmare on his long odyssey home.

There’s a lot to digest when watching Beau Is Afraid, the movie offering a phantasmagoria of lucid imagery wrapped around its surreal narrative. Though the film hasn’t received the same high marks as Aster’s previous films, it has been released to mostly positive reviews thus far, especially towards Phoenix’s performance and Aster’s inspired direction.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 75%
IMDb score: 7.4


The revolution will be orchestrated in the stunning musical biopic ‘Chevalier’
Image Credit: Fox Searchlight.

The beauty of biographical films is that they’re able to focus on more obscure but still endlessly fascinating historical figures, something that can certainly be said for Chevalier, a historical biopic centered around the French Creole musician, Chevalier de Saint-Georges.

In 19th century France, composer/violinist Joseph Bologne (Kelvin Harrison Jr.) rises through the ranks of the elite musical world, even as the inherent racism of the French aristocracy prevents Bologne from achieving his true musical potential.

After several years playing supporting roles in indie and mainstream film, Harrison – like his cinematic protagonist here – ascends to stardom as the prodigal genius, Chevalier. Nearly every critic who has seen the movie has praised Harrison’s performance, with many calling it a triumphant biographical film centered on its main historical figure.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 86%
IMDb score: 5.8

John Wick: Chapter 4

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Image Credit: Lionsgate

If John Wick continues at this pace, it might go down as the one action franchise without any weak entries. Only managing to improve with time, John Wick: Chapter 4 is yet another exceptional installment of Keanu Reeves’ hit franchise, full of heart-stopping explosions, pulse-pounding action, and stunning acting throughout.

Seeking revenge against the High Table, John Wick (Reeves) begins systematically targeting members of the faction, all the while combating the organization's most lethal operatives.

Building the universe of John Wick further, Chapter 4 makes for a satisfying blend of action and samurai-like rules regarding combat and nobility. Critics have been incredibly enthusiastic in their reviews of the movie, calling it another enthralling sequel that matches (perhaps even surpasses) everything that came before it.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 94%
IMDb score: 8.7


For those looking for something a little more emotional.

Mending the Line

Brian Cox, Sinqua Walls, and Perry Mattfeld in Mending the Line (2022)
Image Credit: Eros Hoagland/Mending the Line, LLC.

Thanks to the repeated acclaim of Succession, veteran Brian Cox has experienced a renewed resurgence in his career. With his prominent role as the foul-mouthed mogul Logan Roy behind him, Cox is set to star in the independent drama, Mending the Line.

Returning to the U.S. after being wounded in the Middle East, a young Marine (Sinqua Walls) meets an older Vietnam War veteran (Brian Cox) who teaches him about the joys of fly-fishing to cope with his painful combat experiences.

As sappy as that premise might seem, Mending the Line has proven to be incredibly popular among critics, all of whom have praised the nuanced performances of its cast and its hopeful outlook on overcoming personal trauma as particular high points in the film.

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 83%
IMDb score: 8.1

Padre Pio

Shia LaBeouf in Padre Pio (2022)
Image Credit: Maze Pictures.

Modern filmmaking auteur Abel Ferrara has always expressed a deep interest and affinity for religious figures, an interest that would manifest in Padre Pio, a biographical film centered around the titular 20th-century Franciscan Capuchin friar.

Shortly after World War I has ended and Italy undergoes its first free elections, a young Catholic priest (Shia LaBeouf) experiences a spiritual awakening, slowly becoming one of the most cherished figures in Catholicism.

In spite of Ferrara’s obvious passion for its subject matter, Padre Pio has earned mostly mixed to negative reviews. Critics have remained ambivalent to LaBeouf’s contemporary portrayal of Pio, with most consistently used the words “boring,” “dull,” and “monotonous” in their description of the movie.

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 38%
IMDb score: 6.6

A Thousand and One

Image 3 28 23 at 8.44 PM scaled e1680061527695
Image Credit: Focus Features.

When it debuted at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, A Thousand and One was an utter sensation, earning instantly rave reviews from virtually everyone who had the pleasure of seeing it at the time.

Concerned with her son’s foster family treatment of him, Inez (Teyana Taylor) takes in her six-year-old child Terry (Aaron Kingsley Adetola), raising him alongside her current partner Lucky (Will Catlett).

A moving portrait of family, identity, and stability in the ever-evolving world of New York City, A Thousand and One is an ambitious and heart-melting indie film that’s been met with universal acclaim thus far.

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%
IMDb score: 7.4


For movie fans who like a rush.

The Machine

Mark Hamill and Bert Kreischer in The Machine (2023)
Image Credit: Sony Pictures.

How often do you see an entire film detailing how a stand-up comic earned his nickname? Such is the premise behind Bert Kreischer’s new movie, The Machine, based almost entirely on his popular stand-up bit explaining how he supposedly earned the moniker, “The Machine.”

Two decades after an alcohol-fueled college semester spent abroad in Russia, Bert (Kreischer) and his father (Mark Hamill) are kidnapped by those seeking revenge against Bert for his drunken hijinks.

Weaving in plenty of topical elements – including climate change and artificial intelligence – The Machine is a roving adventure film that mixes comedy with action as effectively as it can. The film has drawn mostly mixed reviews, benefiting greatly from Kreischer and Hamill’s generally enjoyable performances.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 22%
IMDb score: 7.6


For movie fans who love to laugh.

About My Father

Robert De Niro and Sebastian Maniscalco in About My Father (2023)
Image Credit: Lionsgate.

In addition to The Machine, this weekend will also see the release of the similarly meta-fictional comedy, About My Father, starring stand-up comic Sebastian Maniscalco as a loosely fictionalized version of himself.

Revealing his intention to propose to his longtime girlfriend (Leslie Bibb), Sebastian (Maniscalco) has his plans upended when his traditional-minded Italian father (Robert De Niro) demands to spend the weekend with his girlfriend and her parents.

Robert De Niro has made some … questionable career decisions in the past 20 years, About My Father serving as just one more disappointing romcom in a long list of disappointing romcoms. The film has earned routinely poor reviews, repeated criticism aimed at its humor, performances, and reliance on age-old genre tropes related to the romantic comedy.

Where to watch: Exclusively in theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 32%
IMDb score: 6.4


For audience members who want to be on the edge of their seats throughout.

97 Minutes

Peter Brooke, Kasia Koleczek, Slavko Sobin, and Austin Parsons in 97 Minutes (2023)
Image Credit: Black Hangar Studios.

After a band of hijackers seize control of a 767 commercial airliner, the U.S. government scrambles to find a way to resolve the issue before the plane runs out of fuel. The passengers’ only hope lies in an undercover agent (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers) posing as a member of the terrorist group.

From that initial summary, it’s easy to draw comparisons between 97 Minutes and Die Hard, a film most other action movies set in a limited location (Under Siege, Speed, Air Force One, etc.) look to for inspiration.

As with most action movies of its ilk, 97 Minutes has a hard time exiting the shadow of its monumental thematic predecessor, with most critics who have seen it giving mixed to negative reviews.

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: N/A
IMDb score: N/A

Fun For All Ages

Movies that are perfect for the entire family.

The Secret Kingdom

The Secret Kingdom (2023)
Image Credit: Little Monster Productions Pty Ltd.

Decent fantasy films require one thing about all others: imagination. Pragmatically speaking, the reason we watch fantasy movies is that we’re looking for an escape into realms beyond our own mundane world. And if pure imagination is what great fantasy movies thrive off of, The Secret Kingdom has that in spades.

Discovering an otherworldly kingdom beneath their bedroom, 12-year-old Peter (Sam Everingham) and his nine-year-old sister Verity (Alyla Browne) search for five magical objects to save their newfound friends from an evil presence.

Despite some wonky CGI in a few places, The Secret Kingdom has drawn in mostly positive reviews. Many critics praised the film for its exciting storyline and the imaginative universe it brings to the screen (populated by battle-armored pangolins, two-headed turtles, and insect-like pocket watches).

Where to watch: In limited theaters
Rotten Tomatoes score: 67%
IMDb score: 7.8

Grab your tickets ahead of time and skip the lines at the theater.

Richard Chachowski is a freelance writer based in New Jersey. He loves reading, his dog Tootsie, and pretty much every movie to ever exist (especially Star Wars).