Yes, it’s the weekend again, and time to review the new additions to streaming, on Hulu, Netflix and Amazon. So let’s get started!
There are just a few new films added to Hulu‘s line-up this week, the best one being Nico, 1988, a 2017 Belgian/Italian production in English. It’s about a real star of the Velvet Underground, a singer named Nico, Christa Paffgen, a German singer/songwriter(said to be the first Goth) and her troubled life, in the eighties. It stars Trine Dyrhom in the title role and also features Sandor Funtek, John Gordon Sinclair and Susanna Nicchiarelli directed this film. It is an unsympathetic look at a star’s life, The New York Times called it ‘brilliantly unsentimental’ and it gets a 91% on Rotten Tomatoes. Also, new on Hulu is I am Not a Serial Killer, a 2016 thriller from Ireland and Britain. It’s about a boy, branded a sociopath, who has homicidal urges, who witnesses a murder, and more. It stars Max Records, Christopher Lloyd, Laura Fraser, Christina Baldwin and Karl Geary. This is way too scary for me, but it got a great review in The Guardian and it gets a 92% on Rotten Tomatoes. And it is very violent, so don’t watch with the kids. Hulu has also added Say You Will, a 2017 indie drama written and directed by Nick Naveda. This film stars Travis Tope(Boardwalk Empire) as a teenage boy, trying to deal with the suicide of his father, and maneuver his first relationship with a girl, as well. It also stars Katherine Hughes, Israel Broussard, Sam Trammell and Michelle Forbes. This is an unusually insightful treatment of teenage romance, and it gets a 7.4/10 on IMDb. Hulu also has Dirty Wars, the 2013 documentary about the ugly side of the War on Terror. It’ semi based on the book Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield by Jeremy Scahill and Scahill leads investigations, in the film, of crimes in Afghanistan and Yemen, that have been committed in the War on Terror. This film was directed by Richard Rowley, and was nominated for a 2013 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. And it gets an 85% on Rotten Tomatoes. And finally, Hulu offers Beyond the Hills, a 2012 Romanian drama. this is based on a true story, of two girls,Voichița and Alina, members of the Romanian Orthodox church-one of whom is later persecuted with exorcism and torture, for her love for the other woman. It stars Cosmina Stratan, Cristina Flutur, Valeriu Andriuţă, Dana Tapalagă and Cătălina Harabagiu and was directed by Cristian Mungiu. Mugiu won the Award for Best Screenplay at Cannes for this movie and Flutur and Stratan won for Best Actress, jointly, there, too. This movie is tough to watch, the New York Times called it “a tough and engrossing work”, but it’s magical too. And it gets a 90% on Rotten Tomatoes and a 7.6/10 on IMDb. It’s an amazing and important movie.
Netflix has the biggest new addition online this week, with Roma, the 2018 film written and directed by Alfonso Cuarón. This mesmerizing film is in black and white and about a family in Mexico City, during the early 1970′s, amid political and social turmoil. It stars Yalitza Aparicio, Marina de Tavira, Fernando Grediaga, Jorge Antonio Guerrero, Marco Graf and Daniela Demesa. And it has won the Golden Lion, at the Venice Film Festival, and has won a spot on the best ten lists of movies from the National Board of Review, and Time Magazine and the New York Critics Circle have both named it the Best Movie of 2018. It is also nominated for three Golden Globes, is set to be entered as Mexico’s entry as Best Foreign Film, in the upcoming 91st Academy Awards. And it gets a 97%(!) on Rotten Tomatoes. So watch already- I am, for sure. Netflix has also added Tidelands, a 2018 series from Australia. This series is about an ex-con, Cal McTeer, who returns to her hometown and a mystery when a dead body washes up on the beach. It stars Charlotte Best, Marco Pigassi, Aaron Jakubenko, Dalip Sondhi and Caroline Brazier. But this is not just a mystery, but fantasy as well, and it gets a 7/10 on IMDb. If you want a more serious Australian drama, try Wanted, now with Season 3 newly available on Netflix. This series is about two women who are suddenly mixed up in murder at a bus stop and corruption and forced to go on the run. It stars Rebecca Gibney and Geraldine Hakewill as the pair of fugitives and also features Stephen Peacocke, Ryan Corr and Veronica Neave. It’s tense and exciting and I love the two female protagonists. And it gets a 7.7/10 on IMDb. Netflix has also added Memories of the Alhambra, a new Korean suspense series.It features a CEO, who sells augmented reality games, who stays at a hostel in Spain, only to become mixed up mystery and the question of what is real in AR. It stars Hyun Bin,Park Shin-hye, Park Chan-yeol and Park Hoon and has lots of special effects. And it gets an 8.6/10 on mydramalist.com. Another new mini-series on Netflix is Trotsky, a new biographic drama from Russia. It stars Konstantin Khabensky in the title role, as it examines his life and amazing survival in elaborate detail. This mini-series also stars Olga Sutulova, Aleksandra Mareeva,Aleksandra Mareeva,Yevgeny Stychkin and Aleksandra Remisova. This is an absorbing drama, with lots of interesting details, and though it is skewed against Trotsky, and socialism, it’s still enlightening, and gets a 6.3/10 on IMDb. And finally, Netflix has added Season 3 of Travelers, the sci-fi series starring Eric McCormick. Covering a group of time-travelers, this series whose consciousnesses are transported back in time, to prevent to collapse of society. It stars MacKenzie Porter, Nesta Cooper, Jared Abrahamson, Reilly Dolman and Patrick Gilmore and the time travelers and the show was created by Brad Wright. And it gets an 8/10 on IMDb.
Okay, Amazon hasn’t added a lot of new stuff this week, but they have added Canada’s most popular comedy series, Corner Gas, from 2004. It features a gas station in the middle of nowhere and stars Brent Butt, Gabrielle Miller, Fred Ewanuick, Eric Peterson and Janet Wright. this show had some famous guest stars too, like Colin Mochrie(Whose Line is it Anyway?), Kevin MacDonald, Julie Stewart, and even some Prime Ministers, like Paul Martin, Steven Harper and Brian Mulroney. It won 9 Canadian Comedy Awards, 6 Gemini Awards, and it was nominated for an International Emmy in 2004. And it gets an 8/10 on IMDb. And that’s it for the new additions, but Amazon has some classics available, that I have somehow missed, like Boogie Nights, the 1997 classic written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. Boogie Nights introduces us to the world of porn in the 1970‘s, where Dirk Diggler(Mark Wahlberg) becomes a new porn star thanks to Jack Horner(Burt Reynolds). This movie has an all-star cast, with Julianne Moore, Don Cheadle, John Reilly, William H. Macy and Heather Graham. It was nominated for three Academy Awards, and it gets a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes and a 7.9 on IMDb. Amazon also offers Cabaret, the 1972 musical directed by Bob Fosse. Based on the stage play I Am a Camera, and taking place during the Weimar Republic in 1931 Berlin, Cabaret stars Liza Minelli and Michael York as two young naive people trying to build a life in a city where the growing Fascism is making life more and more dangerous. It also stars Joel Grey(!), Helmut Griem, Marissa Berenson,Elisabeth Neumann-Viertel and Helen Vita and won eight Academy Awards, including Best Actress for Minelli and Best Supporting Actor for Joel Grey. And it gets a 95% on Rotten Tomatoes. If you haven’t seen this movie, watch it now, it is especially prescient these days.
So sit back and binge this weekend on classics, new and old, on Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime!