3 great (HBO) Max movies to watch instead of the 2024 Oscars

A knight on a horse looks at a council in The Green Knight.

Here’s a hard truth: the Oscars aren’t for everyone. The speeches, the inane interviews, the chintzy dance numbers — it’s a bloated ceremony that is as off-putting to some people as it is appealing to others.

If you’re one of those people who isn’t going to be watching the 2024 Oscars, you probably need some suggestions for what to do instead. And you can do worse than watch some movies on Max. You should watch the three movies on the list below. One is a 2023 hit starring a Dune: Part Two lead actor, another is an underrated fantasy, and the last is a modern comedy classic.

Need more Oscar recommendations? Check out how to watch the 2024 Oscars for free, 2024 Oscar predictions, 10 biggest Oscar snubs ever, 10 best Oscar-winning movies ever, 10 most Oscar-nominated movies ever, and 5 great Oscar-winning movies on Amazon Prime Video.

In need of some more streaming recommendations? We also have guides to the best movies on Netflix, the best movies on Hulu, the best movies on Amazon Prime Video, and the best movies on Disney+ that are worth looking through. 

Wonka (2023)

A man tips his hat in Wonka.
Warner Bros.

Just because Wonka wasn’t nominated for any Oscars doesn’t mean it’s not worth a watch. An all-ages hit from last December, Wonka stars Dune: Part Two star Timothée Chalamet as Willy Wonka, the iconic character from Roald Dahl’s children’s novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and its first movie adaptation, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. This prequel shows how Wonka became the world’s greatest inventor, magician, and chocolate maker.

Wonka has what you’d expect a movie like this to have: amusing musical performances, candy-colored visuals, and Hugh Grant as a grumpy Oompa Loompa. Wonka is a charming movie that will make you forget about the Oscars by reminding you of all those delicious sweets you could be consuming.

The Green Knight (2021)

A giant reaches to touch a man in The Green Knight.

Craving a feast for the eyes? The Green Knight will do just fine then. Director David Lowery’s visually dazzling adaptation of the famous 14th-century poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight casts Dev Patel as King Arthur’s egotistical nephew Gawain, who must challenge the titular Green Knight and achieve glory for his kingdom.

The Green Knight boasts an impressive casts that includes Oscar winner Alicia Vikander and a pre-The Batman Barry Keoghan. More importantly, the movie incorporates surrealistic, breathtaking imagery to both update the millennia-old story and ground it in the ancient past. The Green Knight is unlike anything you have ever seen, and is perfect to watch on a night honoring the entertainment industry’s best and brightest.

The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

Meryl Streep sits at a desk in The Devil Wears Prada.
20th Century Fox

“That’s all.” With those two words, an iconic phrase was born, and a seemingly ordinary movie transformed into an enduring comedy classic. Adapted from Lauren Weisberger’s popular novel of the same name, director David Frankel’s The Devil Wears Prada chronicles recent college graduate Andy Sachs’ (Anne Hathaway) stressful tenure as a low-level assistant to Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep), the silver-haired editor in chief of Runaway Magazine and the titular devil who, yes, wears Prada.

Not much more can be said about this movie except that almost 18 years later, it’s just as sharp, clever, and entertaining as it was in 2006. Streep’s great, of course, as are Hathaway and Stanley Tucci, but it’s Emily Blunt (nominated at last for Oppenheimer) who steals every scene she’s in as the condescending co-assistant Emily. She views Andy and everyone else in the world with a contempt that’s not veiled in the slightest.