Yes, it’s the weekend again, and time to review the new movies and television shows added to Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime. So lets get started!
One of the biggest additions online this week has to be Hulu‘s Destroyer, the 2018 crime drama starring Nicole Kidman. The tale of a cop who formerly worked deep undercover with a California gang, only to be ruined by what she did, and how she seeks to set some things straight, years later. The cast also include Sebastian Stan, Toby Kebbell, Tatiana Maslany, Bradley Whitford,Jade Pettyjohn ,Scoot McNairy and Natalia Cordova-Buckley and the director was Karyn Kusama(Girlfight). There was a lot of talk about this movie and Kidman‘s physical transformation as she looks quite different, but not as much attention given to the fact that it’s a much different role for her, with the tough, gritty and unhappy character portrayed here. She was nominated for several awards for the part, including a Golden Globe and she might have won, if it were a happier movie. Manohla Dargis of the New York Times said of the director Kusama in this film”she has a singular unapologetic idea about what women can and cannot do onscreen, one she lets rip with verve and her superbly unbound star.” And it gets a 74% on Rotten Tomatoes and a 6.4/10 on IMDb. Hulu has also added Follow Your Feet, a 2018 British comedy. This movie follows Sandra Abbott, played by the wonderful Imelda Staunton, as she finds her husband of 30 years, played by John Sessions, has been cheating on her, and she moves in with her outspoken sister Bif, played by Celia Imrie. The all-star cast also includes Joanna Lumley(AbFab), Josie Lawrence and Indra Ové, and the director is Richard Loncraine. And it gets a 6.6/10 on IMDb. Hulu has also added The Oath a 2018 comedy starring Tiffany Haddish. Written and directed by Ike Barinholtz, this movie considers a family already torn by politics, who are confronted by a “Patriot Oath” to the president required by the government. Meanwhile, Haddish and Barinholtz host a Thanksgiving dinner for the family, including characters played by Carrie Brownstein, Nora Dunn, Jay DuPlass, with agents played by John Cho and Billy Magnussen. Okay, it only gets a 62% on Rotten Tomatoes, but it’s got such a good cast of comedians, I can’t resist. And, finally, Hulu has The Pledge, a 2018 horror show. I wouldn’t recommend this movie to anyone but the horror fanatic, but I know you’re out there, so here goes. A trio of freshmen in college, played by Zack Weiner,Phillip Andre Botello and Zackery Byrd, apply to join every fraternity on campus, only to be turned down by all but a secret society which offers wild parties, etc. If you can survive the hazing. This movie also includes Aaron Dalla Villa, Cameron Cowperthwaite, Jesse Pimentel and Erica Boozer. It’s gross and disgusting, but Jeannette Catsoulis of the New York Times says “if you like your torture movies tight, twisty and decently executed, then “Pledge” is for you.” So there you are. And it gets a 74% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Netflix has two good sci-fi shows added this week, the first of which is The Silence, starring Stanely Tucci and Keirnan Shipka(Chilling Adventures of Sabrina). This is a horror film based on a book of the same name by Tim Lebbon, in which a family tries to evade a swarm of Pterosaur-like creatures who hunt by sound. Tucci Plays the father, with Shipka playing a hearing impaired daughter. Sound familiar? Well, this movie is quite like A Quiet Place, reviewed last week, but The Silence novel came out before writing on A Quiet Place began. the cast also includes Miranda Otto, Kate Trotter, John Corbett and Kyle Harrison Breitkopf. This movie doesn’t get as good of reviews as A Quiet Place, with a 5.5/10 on IMDb and a 27(!)% on Rotten Tomatoes, but I love the cast, and there are interesting ideas put forth in this drama, as well. The other new sci-fi addition on Netflix is Black Summer, a 2019 American series about the early days of a zombie apocalypse. It stars Jaime King, Christine Lee, Justin Chou Cary,
Mustafa Alabssi , Gwynyth Walsh, and Kelsey Flower as a group of survivors, frantically trying to outlast the zombies, while looking for family members of their own. This is a super-tense, gory series(I barely made it through the trailer!) and it gets a 6.6/10 on IMDb. Watch if you dare, there are 8 episodes available now on Netflix. And Netflix has added another cool series online, with Special, a 2019 comedy series starring Ryan O’Connell. This series is written and directed by O’Connell is adapted from his book, I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves, and is about a young man with Cerebral Palsy who decides to be openly gay, instead of hiding his identity. Special also stars Jessica Hecht(Breaking Bad),Punam Patel,Marla Mindelle,Augustus Prew and Patrick Fabian. It gets a stunning 8.2/10 on IMDb and there are 8 episodes available now to stream. Netflix also offer Huge in France, a 2019 comedy series. Gad Elmaleh stars as ...Gad Elmaleh, a huge comedy star in France, who decides to leave all that behind and come to the U.S, to be a better father to his resentful son, and the relative obscurity he enjoys in L.A. This series also stars Matthew Del Negro,Erinn Hayes,Jordan Ver Hoeve,Scott Keiji Takeda and Keana Marie, but also has cameo appearances of big names, like Jerry Seinfeld, to whom Elmaleh had been compared. I like the series and The Decider says of it”isn’t a laugh riot, but it has an appealing mix of comedy and sincere emotion, and Gad Elmaleh is a compelling lead.” And it gets a 5.6/10 on IMDb. And, finally, Netflix has Super Lopez, a Spanish comedy from 2018. This a great riff on the Super Hero movie, with Dani Rovira starring as a super hero undercover, trying to lay low and seem mediocre, so he won’t be hated by his peers in school, not realizing he is from the planet Chiron and vested with a vital secret to save that planet. The movie also stars Alexandra Jiménez ,Julián López, Pedro Casablanc, Gracia Olayo and Maribel Verdu as Agatha. It is funny and sarcastic, and gets a 5.6/10 on IMDb.
Amazon Prime hasn’t added a lot this week, but they do have a few gems mixed in there that I haven;t mentioned. One is Origins, a French crime series from 2014. In this series a genealogist, played by Maud Forget, teams up with a cop, played by Julien Baumgartner, in France. It also stars Christian Rauth, Maud Forget, Micky Sébastian,Vanessa David,Philippe Dusseau and Nathalie Blanc. It has subtitles, too, of course, and it gets a 6.9/10 on IMDb. I’m watching. Amazon also has Spiral, the 2006-2013 crime procedural series,again from France. This one stars Caroline Proust, Gregory Fitoussi, Philippe Duclos as people investigate different criminal cases, as seen by different authorities of the criminal justice system, from the police to the lawyers and justices at the Palais de Justice, in Paris. It also stars Audrey Fleurot, Theirry Godard, Fred Bianconi and Grégory Fitoussi. It’s a grim and dark series, but it gets an 8.5/10 on IMDb. And, finally, Amazon has added Guava Island,a 2019 Amazon original movie from Donald Glover. It stars Glover as an out-of-work singer, who dreams of writing a song to save his country, Guava Island, and Rihanna as his muse, and the movie also stars Letitia Wright,Nonso Anozie. It’s a hard show to define, but there’s lots of music and of course, some social commentary, and, like Atlanta, comedy. And it gets a 7.7/10 on IMDb.
So sit back, relax and binge this weekend, on great movies and tv, new and old, on Amazon, Netflix and Hulu!