Netflix Picks: 5th December 2014


Have you ever sat in front of Netflix and spent so long trying to choose something to watch, that when you finally decide, you have no time left to watch it?  You are not alone!  We have searched through the darkest depths of Netflix to bring you the streaming service’s hidden gems.


New to Netflix – Dallas Buyer’s Club


Matthew McConaughey, a man once known for his prominence in generic romantic comedies, gives an outstanding performance in Dallas Buyer’s Club, one which won him the Best Actor Academy Award. With Jared Leto also picking up an award for Best Supporting Actor, this film is full of great performances.  McConaughey plays the role of Ron Woodruff: a man who when diagnosed with AIDS in 1985, refuses to accept the doctor’s insistence that he only has 30 days left to live.  Instead, he starts smuggling drugs into America in attempt to help himself and fellow sufferers.  Based on a true-story, Dallas Buyer’s Club, much like its leading man, is captivating and charming, packing a serious punch without lacking in humour.


Indie Hit – Safety Not Guaranteed

safety not guaranteed

With all the excitement surrounding next year’s Jurassic World, and with the release of the trailer last week , why not look back at director Colin Trevorrow‘s previous film to see what’s in store.  Granted, there aren’t any raptors or Chris Pratt in it, but Safety Not Guaranteed does star his Parks and Recreation wife,  Aubrey Plaza.  Following journalists as they investigate the origin of a wanted ad asking for a companion to travel back in time with the author (Mark Duplass), the film is funny and intelligent, combining romance and science-fiction with endearing characters.


Documentary – Cutie and The Boxer

cutie and the boxer

This is a brilliant documentary, focusing on ‘boxing’ painter Ushio Shinohara, and his relationship with wife Noriko.   Cutie and The Boxer joins artist Ushio as he prepares for a show, hoping that it will reignite his career, however it is wife Noriko who comes away as the star.  Noriko, is shy and unassuming where Ushio is extroverted and arrogant.  Also an artist she seeks recognition in her own right, creating illustrations of ‘Cutie’ (a version of herself) which depicts the ups and downs of their chaotic marriage.  The couple is completely fascinating, appearing to be total opposites, but joined together through their love of art.


Catch Up – The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey


It’s already been two years since the first film in The Hobbit trilogy was released, and with the closing film, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies being released next Friday, now’s the time for a refresher on Bilbo’s epic journey.  Martin Freeman stars as reluctant hobbit Bilbo, who, joined by a company of dwarves, sets out to reclaim the Lonely Mountain, and the gold within, from the evil dragon Smaug. Visually stunning, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is an exciting adventure, evoking the same tone as director Peter Jackson’s The Lord of The Rings trilogy.


Classic – Network



Four-time Academy Award winner Network feels as relevant today as it did when it was released in 1976.  Anchorman Howard Beale (Peter Finch) is forced to retire to make way for younger talent.  An on-screen meltdown where he threatens to kill himself, results in high ratings, causing the news network to exploit Beale’s rants and ravings in an effort to increase viewing figures.  In its exploration of decaying news values, Network has inspired films such as Anchorman and more recently Nightcrawler, which is a reflection of its continuous relevance.  With brilliant performances from Finch, and Faye Dunaway (as programming executive Diana), and a phenomenal script, Network truly is a must-see.

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Hannah Newton

I have a passion for all things Spielberg, old school hip hop, and bad action films on a Friday night. My favourite films include Jaws, Annie Hall, The Jerk, Mulholland Drive, and Double Indemnity.

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