Netflix Picks – 20th March 2015



Thankfully, the weekend is once again upon us, and whether you want a TV series to sink your teeth into, an intriguing documentary to devour, or a fine film to feast on, we have picked a selection of Netflix, just for you.


New Series – Bloodline


Created by the same team behind Damages, and hoping to follow in the footsteps of other Netflix originals Orange is The New Black and House of Cards, all 13 episodes of the first season of Bloodline are available to stream from today. The series tells the story of the Rayburn family, an ordinary Florida family, whose everyday life is threatened when the return of the oldest son threatens to expose a dark family secret. Bloodlines not only has an intriguing story, but an outstanding cast, with Kyle ChandlerLinda Cardellini, Sissy Spacek, and Sam Shepard starring.


Documentary – Life Itself


Year after year the announcement of the Oscar nominations always delivers some controversy over films that were left out. The biggest shock this year was the omission of The Lego Movie from the Best Animated Feature category, but one that also caused a stir was Life Itself being missed out of the Best Documentary field. The film explores the life and career of the world-famous film critic, Roger Ebert, following him through his early newspaper days, his At The Movies television series with Gene Siskel, and sadly, onto his long-running battle with cancer and how it affected him and his family. A personal yet highly entertaining documentary, Life Itself is a must see for film fans, and anyone familiar with Ebert’s work.


Classic – Miller’s Crossing

miller's crossingRevisiting Joel and Ethan Coen’s  Miller’s Crossing, it’s amazing to think that it came so early in their career (it was their third film behind Blood Simple, and Raising Arizona). Telling the story of Tom Regan (Gabriel Byrne), an advisor to a crime boss who tries to keep the peace between battling mobs, set in the Prohibition-era, Miller’s Crossing is a stylised gangster film, with a complex plot. It’s no screwball comedy like Raising Arizona, nor is it quite as serious as Blood Simple, instead it lies somewhere in between. With the usual mix of colourful characters we have come to expect from the Coen’s, witty, rat-a-tat dialogue, and beautiful cinematography, Miller’s Crossing should be considered as one of their best films.


Guilty Pleasure  – 22 Jump Street

Jonah Hill, left, and Channing Tatum in Columbia Pictures' "22 Jump Street."I’m not going to pretend this is a great film, but it is perfect for the sort of mindless, Friday-night film viewing that you sometimes want from Netflix, and actually, isn’t half as bad as you think it is. The follow-up to the incredibly popular 21 Jump Street, sees cops Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) graduate from their undercover high-school assignment, and move on to college. Directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the pair behind The Lego Movie, the film has a high joke rate, most of which land successfully. Although I’m not a fan of either of the leads, they do play their parts to very well, with Tatum in particular on top form. The biggest laughs probably come from the end of the film, where they send up the potential for ongoing sequel to its very limits.