11 top new movies to stream this week on Netflix, Max, Hulu and more (March 5-March 11)

Emma Stone in "Poor Things"
(Image credit: Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures)

March is here and Spring is just around the corner. Also around the corner? A ton of new movies on Netflix, Max, Hulu and other major streaming services.

In fact, many of the top movies this week already hit streaming services today. Atop the list of those movies you can watch right now is "Mean Girls." Yes, it's an adaptation of an adaptation, but surprisingly, it's still pretty good. There's also "Perfect Days," a critically beloved Japanese-language film from German director Wim Wenders that could be an Oscars winner this time next week.

Speaking of 2024 Oscar nominees, you can finally watch "Poor Things" on Hulu this week. It was one of the best movies from 2023 and was the biggest movie to hit paid video-on-demand (PVOD) streaming services last week. Now, you don't even need to pay for it provided you have a Hulu subscription.

Some of these titles are newly available via digital release, so you can purchase them for a premium price, but for others, all you need is the right streaming subscription. And while you're here, make sure to check out the new TV shows to watch from streamers this week and the best of what's new on Netflix.

Here are the top new movies streaming this week.

'Perfect Days' (PVOD)

"Perfect Days is really four stories in one. Starring Kōji Yakusho as Hirayama, a toilet cleaner who lives by a regimented daily routine, the movie is a thoughtful examination of the mundane daily existence of man and the little things that make those mundane days "perfect." It also has an excellent soundtrack thanks to Hirayama's love of listening to music on cassette tapes.

This movie has received near-universal acclaim from critics and won two of the three awards it was nominated for at Cannes, including Best Actor for Yakusho's performance as Hirayama. It's now up for Best International Feature Film at the 2024 Oscars, though it faces fierce competition in that category.

Buy or rent on Amazon now

'The Marsh King's Daughter' (Hulu)

This psychological thriller stars Daisy Ridley as Helena, a woman living an ordinary life with her husband Stephen (Garret Hedlund) and their young daughter. However, she’s hiding a dark and dangerous secret — her estranged father is the infamous "Marsh King" (Ben Mendelsohn).

Based on the Karen Dionne novel, this movie gets dark. Mendelsohn's "Marsh King" went to prison after abducting Helena and her mother and keeping them captive in the wilderness for years. Now, he’s escaped prison and Helena, who grew up idolizing her father, now knows the truth and fears for her and her daughter’s safety. 

Stream now on Hulu

'Mean Girls' (Paramount Plus/MGM Plus)

This movie is based on the 2017 Broadway musical that was based on the hit 2004 movie starring Lindsey Lohan as Cady Heron. After a decent theatrical run and a brief stint on paid video-on-demand streaming services, "Mean Girls" (2024) is now available on not one, but two streaming services — Paramount Plus and MGM Plus.

This version of the popular coming-of-age story stars Angourie Rice as Cady Heron, a teenage girl who doesn't fit in, and Reneé Rapp as Regina George, leader of a group of mean-spirited popular girls dubbed "The Plastics." Cady eventually joins the Plastics to become popular, but she struggles to do that without betraying who she is as a person. If you like musicals or the 2004 original, "Mean Girls" is worth checking out this week.

Stream now on Paramount Plus and MGM Plus

'The Teacher’s Lounge' (PVOD)

Like "Perfect Days," this movie has been beloved by critics and film festival juries. It's also up for Best International Feature Film, though like Wim Wenders' Japanese-language film, this German movie is also facing a tough battle to claim the award.

"The Teachers Lounge" stars Leonie Benesch as Carla Nowak, an idealistic teacher at a new school. The school has a thief in its midst though, and things quickly devolve into chaos. Unfortunately, Carla only drags things further into chaos, despite her good intentions.

Buy or rent on Apple TV now

'Argylle' (PVOD)

If you've heard about "Argylle" you've probably heard about how bad it is. I mean ... it's not "Madame Web" bad (probably), but it's the worst film I've seen this year. This is a shame, because after watching the trailer for Matthew Vaughn's follow-up to "The Kings Man," I was initially intrigued by the premise of a spy novel writer shockingly predicting a real-life espionage tale.

Unfortunately, the movie just doesn't live up to the potential of its premise. It never quite figures out what it's doing or what movie it wants to be, and some roles are arguably miscast. If I had to recommend this movie for anything, Catherine O'Hara's performance is fun, and there is an action scene or two worth watching. I'd wait for the movie to hit Apple TV Plus though rather than buying or renting it today.

Buy or rent on Apple TV now

'Poor Things' (Hulu)

"Poor Things" is absurd, surreal and unhinged. It's a steampunk fantasy about a Frankenstein's monster-like character (Emma Stone) who is the reanimated corpse of a suicide victim with the intelligence of a baby. That reanimated corpse then goes through a sexual awakening that serves as the focal point of the story.

And yet ... it's a surprisingly grounded journey of self-discovery, and highly relatable. Yes, there are body horror elements, but Emma Stone's Bella Baxter loses her childlike naïvety in a way that feels all too familiar when you get to the core of the story.

That said, "Poor Things" movie is still definitely weird, which is on brand for director Yorgos Lanthimos. Watch this Best Picture contender now before the Oscars this weekend so you can judge it for yourself.

Stream on Hulu starting March 7

'Ricky Stanicky' (Prime Video)

"This is a really bad idea." One could make the argument that a raunchy comedy about three friends who have been lying about a fake friend for 25 years and then hire an "X-rated rock 'n' roll impersonator" to play that fake friend so that everyone doesn't find out they've been lying is also a really bad idea.

But with this cast, it just might work. Starring Zac Efron, Andrew Santino, and Jermaine Fowler as real best friends Dean, JT, and Wes, and John Cena as their fake friend Ricky Stanicky, this movie does look like it could be funny. Does it feel like it's maybe beneath Oscar-nominee William H. Macy, who plays the friends' boss? Perhaps, but it's casting like that that could take this movie from a bad idea to a good time.

Stream on Prime Video starting March 7

'American Fiction' (MGM Plus)

While it has its flaws, I definitely get why "American Fiction" got its flowers from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The story is clever, the performances are excellent — and heartfelt. While marketed largely as a laugh-a-minute biting satire, this movie has more than its share of deeply emotional moments, which nearly all land. 

Granted, it's still a biting satire of the role white guilt and stereotypes of Black culture play in the tastemaking process in America. And it is hilarious at times. Watching Jeffrey Wright try and tell meaningful stories only to have white publishers prefer "My Pafology" written by the fictional "Stagg R. Leigh" will have you laughing, though sometimes uncomfortably (in a good way). Honestly, my biggest complaint is that it's streaming on MGM Plus rather than Prime Video, but thankfully there's a seven-day free trial.

Stream on MGM Plus starting March 8

'Damsel' (Netflix)

Happily ever after for some may be a nightmare for others. This fairy-tale-gone-wrong stars Millie Bobby Brown as Princess Elodie, a dutiful damsel who thinks she found her prince charming in Prince Henry (Nick Robinson). However, it turns out that she's been selected for a much darker purpose — a sacrifice to a dragon that threatens to bring down the whole kingdom.

Also starring Robin Wright and Ray Winstone as the Queen and King and Angela Bassett as Elodie's stepmother, this Netflix original has the potential to be a surprise hit for Netflix subscribers and fantasy fans alike. Don't miss it when it debuts this Friday (March 8).

Stream on Netflix starting March 8

'To Kill a Tiger' (Netflix)

Yet another Oscar nominee makes the list this week. This Hindi-language Canadian documentary tells the true story of a family in Jharkhand, India, fighting for justice after the brutal rape of their teenage daughter. Obviously, proceed with caution on this one given the sensitive subject matter.

While this documentary didn't really take off in the U.S., it's been a major success in the Canadian film industry and raised awareness for the family's struggle. Prominent actors with connections to India Dev Patel, Mindy Kaling and Priyanka Chopra Jonas were also all involved in getting this movie made and distributed. It's won most awards it's been nominated for and next up could be the Best Documentary Feature Award at this weekend's Oscars ceremony. 

Stream on Netflix starting March 8

'Wonka' (Max)

While "Dune: Part Two" will probably be the most memorable Timothée Chalamet performance of the past 12 months, "Wonka" will still be an important step in his road to movie stardom. This Willy Wonka origin story stars Chalamet as the eccentric chocolatier as he tries to break through the cartel of evil chocolate makers controlling the candy industry, and he's by far the main attraction.

Plus, you get some song and dance numbers from Chalamet and others, something I promise you will be noticeably absent from the "Dune" sequel. So whether you need a family-friendly movie or another musical to watch after "Mean Girls," this movie is worth watching on Max this week.

Stream on Max starting March 8

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Malcolm McMillan
Senior Streaming Writer

Malcolm McMillan is a senior writer for Tom's Guide, covering all the latest in streaming TV shows and movies. That means news, analysis, recommendations, reviews and more for just about anything you can watch, including sports! If it can be seen on a screen, he can write about it. Previously, Malcolm had been a staff writer for Tom's Guide for over a year, with a focus on artificial intelligence (AI), A/V tech and VR headsets.

Before writing for Tom's Guide, Malcolm worked as a fantasy football analyst writing for several sites and also had a brief stint working for Microsoft selling laptops, Xbox products and even the ill-fated Windows phone. He is passionate about video games and sports, though both cause him to yell at the TV frequently. He proudly sports many tattoos, including an Arsenal tattoo, in honor of the team that causes him to yell at the TV the most.