Netflix Picks: 16th January 2015

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After a brief hiatus over the festive period, Netflix Picks has returned.

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.

Documentary – 20 Feet from Stardom

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Over the Christmas period you will have no doubt heard “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” playing in shops and on radio stations. The singer of that hit, Darlene Love, is one of the main focuses of this insightful documentary. The film explores the role of the backup singer, and looks at some of the big names in the business. An enjoyable watch, with some  extremely talented protagonists, the documentary walked away from last years Oscars with ‘Best Documentary Feature, and a rather memorable acceptance speech from Miss Darlene Love.

Classic – Heathers

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On the surface Heathers looks like a standard teen movie from the late eighties, but in reality it is so much more. For starters it is dark, very dark, and incredibly funny. Veronica (Winona Ryder) tries her hardest to fit in with the ‘in crowd’ (a group of three girls, all named Heather). That is, until she meets rebel J.D. (Christian Slater) who teaches her that she doesn’t need to fit in with any crowd, in fact, there doesn’t need to be any in crowds at all…Perfect if you like your comedies black and dry.

Anime – Ghost in the Shell

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With last weeks news that a live action version of the classic Japanese anime starring Scarlett Johansson is planned for release in 2017, now is as good a time as any to get (re)acquainted with the original. The film revolves around a female cyborg cop who, along with her partner, must hunt down the powerful and mysterious hacker, The Puppet Master, wanted for illegally hacking into people’s minds. Ghost in the Shell is an intriguing sci-fi with stunning animation.

TV – The Office (US)

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We now all know how funny Steve Carell is, and now he has just been nominated for an Oscar, we know he is talented too. Cast your mind back to 2005 however, and a young(ish) Carell was cast as the lead in a remake of the British The Office. After stumbling through the first season, Carell get’s into his stride, and makes the role of bumbling boss Michael Scott his own. Not as cold as the British version, The Office (US) is consistently funny without being either too schmaltzy or too nasty. Admittedly, it does stutter a bit after Carell leaves at the end of Season 7, but it has fantastic supporting characters that still put it above most other sitcoms. If you are a fan of Parks and Recreation, this is made by the same team. Both shows come highly recommended as an example of how American comedy can get it right.

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