7 best new to Max movies with 90% or higher on Rotten Tomatoes

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Max is far from old, but it's incredibly reliable when it comes to adding great movies every month. Yes, the rechristened HBO Max delivers a slew of fantastic movies in July, enough to remind us that it's still the home box office (even without 'HBO' in the name), as well as the best streaming service

This new batch of movies gives you a lot of options the best Max movies to watch throughout the month. Admittedly, we'll encourage you to watch now while you can,  as Max does not publicize when movies will leave the service anymore (look for "Last Chance" under "New & Notable" to get an idea of what's about to go).

To help cure your decision paralysis (a problem we all share), we're refining the massive list of new-to-Max movies with two filters. First, we cut the list down to only movies with 90% or more on Rotten Tomatoes. Then, we show you our picks from those that critics deemed universally-great. These are movies with scores of 90% or higher, which is essentially an A grade. 

And, as always, this list of the most critically-beloved movies new to Max aims to offer something for everyone. We've got a beloved drama, an under-the-radar thriller, classic action and adventure movies, a war film and a genre-defying crime/comedy/drama that's ultimately rewatchable, too.

Dunkirk (2017)

As you ready yourself for Oppenheimer, Christopher Nolan's latest massive film, it's a good time to go back to see his most recent film that critics loved. Dunkirk focuses on the titular World War II battle on the beach, where civilian and naval vessels helped rescue 330,000 Allied troops.

Unsurprisingly, Dunkirk is a tour-de-force of cinema, with Nolan proving that he's got more than enough technique to surprise and thrill. Not only is Dunkirk a great war film, but its tension creates an immersive experience worthy of any great home theater.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 92%
Genre: War
Stream it on Max

Pulp Fiction (1994)

Some people may stop right here, and open Quentin Tarantino's sophomore film on Max, possibly to avoid daring Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) to strike down with great vengeance and furious anger. We get it, because Pulp Fiction is just that good, ultimately quotable, filled with the flop-sweat of mistakes and danger and packed with more star power than most movies ever dream to offer.

The story is far from simple, and therein lies the fun: a series of miscreants linked together by mistakes, crime and chance. Should a washed-up boxer (Bruce Willis) take a dive for a pay-day? Can anyone find redemption? Is "what" a country you've ever heard of? The answers to these questions and more lie in Pulp Fiction.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 92%
Genre: Comedic crime
Stream it on Max

Headhunters (2012)

We've heard of side-hustles, but Game of Thrones' Nikolaj Coster-Waldau finds himself inside a situation on a different level in Headhunters. Roger (Aksel Hennie), appears to be just a smug corporate recruiter, but he's actually an art thief once he's
off the clock. So while Clas (Coster-Waldau) may have an incredibly valuable asset, his new association with Roger opens him up to a world of chaos.

Imagine if the Coen brothers, from their darker and earlier days, made a Norwegian cat-and-mouse movie that got grimy and leaned into the action. That's what you'll get with Headhunters, thanks to a sense of humor you might not see coming.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 93%
Genre: Drama
Stream it on Max

Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1982)

George Miller possibly heard all the critiques of the first Mad Max movie, including those that it was too grim. The Road Warrior made for a perfect follow-up, by expanding the world of Max Rockatansky (Mel Gibson), the former cop who lost his family, into a more exciting place. Now, Max accidentally finds a chance for redemption, thanks to the dangerous Humungus (Kjell Nilsson) and his marauders.

Light on plot, heavy on 'cool' action, Road Warrior is the movie that's responsible for the continuation of the Mad Max series. You could easily skip the first Mad Max movie (which is currently free with ads on YouTube), but watch 'Beyond Thunderdome' (also on Max), too. Annoyingly, 'Fury Road' is not on any streaming service, so you'll need to spend at least $4 to rent it online.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 95%
Genre: Action/adventure
Stream it on Max

Shoplifters (2018)

The lower class struggles seen in Parasite (also on Max right now) are seen from a different angle in Japanese writer/director Hirokazu Kore-eda's Shoplifters. Here, the the Shibata family has nothing, and needs to steal in order to survive. Even with their meager means, the Shibatas decide to take in Yuri (Miyu Sasaki), after discovering what they believe to be signs of abuse. But as the girl learns to shop-lift with the family, the family learns that she's a missing child at the center of a confusing story.

More meditative than Parasite, Shoplifters earned praise for its nuance and subtlety. Don't let subtitles scare you away from Shoplifters, as you'll miss a mountain of a movie.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%
Genre: Drama
Stream it on Max

Good Will Hunting (1997)

Will Hunting (Matt Damon) cleans the New England university he works at, and he's also smart enough to out-think its students as well. If only he could stop getting in fights, and finding himself in other trouble with the law. Fortunately, Will is given some guidance from Dr. Sean Maguire (Robin Williams), who is a better influence than Will's South Boston buddy Chuckie (Ben Affleck).

For as predictable as Good Will Hunting is, it's also loved for its strong performances and earnest drama. Oh, and it was also proof that Damon and Affleck would be a powerful force in the movie industry, as the two wrote it in college. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%
Genre: Drama
Stream it on Max

Bullitt (1968)

Frank Bullitt (Steve McQueen), a San Francisco Police Dept. lieutenant, is a super-cop who plays by his own rules, and gets mixed results along with the ire of top brass. And he doesn't care. That all may sound cliche, but McQueen's performance is top-notch. 

Heralded in its time for its amazing stunts and fantastic car chase scenes, Bullitt set a standard that is still being aped today. Its dialogue also won applause for its natural tone. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%
Genre: Neo-noir crime drama
Stream it on Max

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Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.