Yes, we’ve got some good movies and television shows to talk about, that have been added on Hulu, Amazon and Netflix. So let’s get right to it!
Hulu has some good additions this week, but the most surprising is that they’ve already made their January edition of Into the Dark available, with New Year, New You. This one’s directed by Sophie Takal(Always Shine) and features bullying, social media and the internet, and a woman’s attempt at revenge. Suki Waterhouse stars as Alexis, with Carly Chaikin as her nemesis, a self-improvement star on You-Tube, and Kirby-Howell Baptiste and Melissa Berglund round out the cast. I love the fact that this is a mainly female production, the first of it’s kind for the In The Dark series and theplaylist.net says it’s a ” brutal & harrowing take on New Year’s Eve and social media.” And it gets a 7.4/10 on IMDb. Well worth watching. Also, new on Hulu, is Bastards, a 2013 French/German film. This, too, is a story an attempt at revenge, this one by a man who believes his brother-in-law’s suicide was caused by his creditor. Bastards stars Vincent Lindon,Chiara Mastroianni, Julie Bataille, Michel Subor, Lola Créton and Alex Descas, and was first screened at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival. The film was inspired by Akira Kurosawa’s The Bad Sleep Well,and it gets a 6.1/10 on IMDb and a 65% on Rotten Tomatoes. Hulu has also added A Most Wanted Man, the 2014 Philip Seymour Hoffman movie. Based on the novel of the same name by John LeCarre, Hoffman stars as Günther Bachmann, a disheveled intelligence man in Germany, trying to turn Arab people into informants for his government. It has a stellar cast, with Rachal McAdams, Willem Dafoe, Robin Wright,Grigoriy Dobrygin, Derya Alabora, Daniel Brühl,Nina Hoss and Herbert Grönemeyer. This was Hoffman‘s last major role before his death and Richard Roeper called it one of the best spy thrillers in years, and it gets an 86% on Rotten Tomatoes. And, finally, Hulu has added
The Devil’s Doorway, a 2018 horror film. This takes place in Northern Ireland, directed by Aislinn Clarke, and is inspired by the Magdalenian Laundries, where “fallen” women were imprisoned and used as virtual slaves, by the Irish Catholic Church. So, when Father Thomas(Lalor Roddy) is sent by the Vatican to investigate a statue weeping blood at a laundry, you know it can’t be good. It also stars Ciaran Flynn, Helena Bereen and Lauren Coe, and is mostly shot with 16mm film and has a homemade, shaky look.And it gets a 76% on Rotten Tomatoes and a 5.2/10 on IMDb. Don’t watch alone.
The biggest add on Netflix this week has to be Watership Down, an animated mini series. Based on Richard Adams classic 1972 novel of the same name, this is animation for adults, not for children, as this is the sometimes violent, sometimes heartbreaking story of a group of rabbits trying to survive man’s violence and destruction. This is the magical and lyrical tale of the rabbits, who have their own language, mythology and poetry and this production has an all-star cast, including Tom Wilkinson, Ben Kingsley, Olivia Coleman, Gemma Arterton, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult,John Boyega and Daniel Kaluuya, to name a few. This is CGI animation, not hand painted, but it’s such a wonderful and touching story with amazing voice acting, too. And it gets a 7.1/10 on IMDb and a 71% on Rotten Tomatoes. The other striking addition on Netflix this week is Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, a new interactive movie. It features a young programmer(Fionn Whitehead of Dunkirk), as he tries to adapt a fantasy novel into a video game, in 1984. It also stars Will Poulter, Asim Chaudry, Craig Parkinson, Alice Lowe and Tallulah Haddon. You will be given a short tutorial, based on the kind of device you’re viewing with, about the interactive qualities of the film. Along the way, you make choices about what a character does, or what will happen, with a chance to go back, and change your decision. And, depending on what choices you make, the film can last any where from 40 minutes to 2 and 1/2 hours! And, at the end, you can change your last critical choice, to get another ending. phew. A little complicated. But Bandersnatch gets an 8.3/10 on IMDb, so watch, if you feel up to the challenge! Also, new to Netflix is When Angels Sleep, a Spanish thriller. In this movie, a businessman falls asleep at the wheel, hitting a young woman, and her frightened friends search for the truth. It stars Ester Exposito, Sira Alonso de Alarcon, Asia Ortega, Julian Villagran, Daniel Jumilla, Marian Alvarez and Christian Mulas and is directed by Gonzalo Bendala. It is violent, rated TV-MA and gets a 5.4/10 on IMDb. Netflix also has Hashoter Hatov, an Israeli comedy series. Hashoter Hatov translates to “The Good Cop” the good cop is Danny Confino, a bit overzealous and even violent, sometimes, recently split from his girlfriend and so, living with his parents, as he tries to deal with petty criminals and others. It stars Yuval Semo, Liora Rivlin,Guy Loel, Amit Lior and Yigal Adika and is directed by Tomer Avivram and Eitan Zur. And it gets a 7.6/10 on IMDb. And, finally, Netflix has The Innocents, the heartbreakingly beautiful French movie from 2016. This movie tells the tale of Benedictine nuns, who, at the end of World WarII, were raped and impregnated by Soviet soldiers. Lou de Laâge stars a doctor trying to help them and Agata Buzek and Agata Bulesza(Ida) play two nuns, and the cast is rounded out by Vincent Macaigne,Joanna Kulig and Katarzyna Dąbrowska. It was nominated for the Cesar Award(Best Film) at Cannes, and other festivals and gets an amazing 94% on Rotten Tomatoes. I’m definitely watching.
The huge addition on Amazon is Hereditary, the 2018 horror movie starring Toni Collette. Collette plays a miniaturist whose family unravels the sinister story of their past, after her mother’s death. The cast also includes Gabriel Byrne, Ann Dowd, Alex Wolff and the superb Milly Shapiro as Collette‘s daughter Charlie. Even the trailer was too scary for me, and Peter Travers of Rolling Stone called it “the scariest movie of 2018” and calls Collette‘s performance a “tour de force.” And it gets an 89% on Rotten Tomatoes. Amazon also offers The Guardians, an amazing WWI drama from France. Co-written and directed by Xavier Beauvois, it’s is the story of World War I at home, how the ordinary people survived, or tried to survive, on a farm, with all the male workers gone to war. It stars Nathalie Baye, Laura Smet and Iris Bry,Olivier Rabourdin and Cyril Descours and has cinematography by Caroline Champetier. That cinematography led to scenes compared to “Monet come to life” by reviewer Christy Lemire of rogerebert.com and Rotten Tomatoes gives The Guardians a whopping 94%! I am definitely watching. And finally, Amazon has added the Doctor Who Christmas Specials, from 2012 and because you can never get enough Doctor Who. Doctor Who has always had fabulous, gothic Christmas specials, as you know, but these are the three that star Matt Smith(one of my favorites). It also stars Karen Gillen, Arthur Darvill,Claire Skinner, Holly Earl, Maurice Skinner, Jenna Coleman(in her first appearance as Clara) and the great Michael Gambon, as a scroogish Kazran Sardick. And plenty of monsters and mystery, too. And Doctor Who gets an 8.7/10 on IMDb. And if you haven’t ever watched Doctor Who, now is the perfect time to binge and catch up, and Amazon has a lot of other Doctor Who episodes to keep you happy.
So enjoy a wonderful holiday weekend, binging on holiday treats and exciting movies and TV shows from your favorite chair!