My last blog on the pleasure of curling up to watch past episodes of favorite TV programs or programs and movies you missed while they were being released for the first time was on February 6, 2012 (“Netflix Instant Queue”–BBC’s Your Best Bet).
Netflix is now a juggernaut. For me the pleasures of Netflix downloading has tripled just like their stock. And just as Amazon is challenging the distribution of bricks-and-mortar publishing by promoting e-books, so Netflix is challenging the entertainment world of cinema and television with instant streaming.
A few recommendations in the movie category including some oldies as well as original content produced exclusively for Netflix viewers:
1) Blackfish (2013) (see last week’s review of April 19): A searing documentary about how SeaWorld treats the orcas in captivity for the Shamu show.
2) Page One: Inside the New York Times (2011): A reporter’s perspective on “dead tree” newsprint and the demise of the newspaper world as we know it.
3) House of Cards , seasons 1 and 2 (see my reviews February 11, 2013 and March 12, 2014. One of the best political thrillers ever. Not just a remake of the 1990’s British series, but an original drama of the corruption of politics in the US created expressly for Netflix.
4) Orange is the New Black (see my reviews of August 7 and August 15, 2013) A breathtaking example of narrative writing at its finest. Loosely based on true events, this Netflix original raises the question: How does one survive in a penal institution that can kill your soul?
5) Fargo (1996) This classic Coen brothers eccentric crime thriller is the basis for the riveting new television series by the same name that has just broadcast two episodes on HBO. There are very few similarities in story but the TV version of the quirky characters and personalities channel the cinema upon which the HBO series is based. Watch both!
6) Side Effects (2012) (see my review July 31, 2013) This limited-distribution Steven Soderbergh drama should have had considerably more traction! The crime revealed is bad, really bad. But the question is not who did it but who should be held responsible?
7) The World Before Her (2012) This haunting Indian documentary focuses on two young women, both believing themselves independent and feminist. Ironically (from an American’s point of view), one yearns to be Miss India while the other trains to become a militant nationalist. Riveting!
Try some of these on my list, let me know ones you would recommend, and continue to discover the more obscure but worthwhile cinematic treasures we have to choose from–more than ever before! At the click or swipe of a finger!