Sunday, March 29, 2015

My Netflix Picks #1

After what has felt like an endless wait, Netflix finally launched down here in Australia this past Tuesday, much to the joy of those who haven't already been accessing it thought the region making app Hola. I'm trilled to finally see it on my TV screen despite the fact the range of titles are currently limited. I present to you now my first set of "Netflix Picks" dating from the launch on March 24th to March 27th. I plan on posting these every Friday; providing my ISP data allowance holds out for the month.    

Men at Lunch 
Director: Seán Ó Cualáin
Year: 2012  
Category: Documentaries
Rating: ★★★★★ Loved it!

Upon first exploring the extensive library of Netflix I was instantly impressive the range of documentaries on a variety of subjects, including the simplest things such as chickens and chocolate. "Men at Lunch" explores the history behind a photograph that I'm sure most of have seen at one point or another. It's one the most polarizing photos of the twentieth century, shrouded in mystery and subject to it's fair share on controversy. This hour long documentary not only examines the photo itself but the diverse cultural history behind it. Highly recommend viewing! 

Leaves of Grass 
Director: Tim Blake Nelson
Year: 2009
Category: Independent
Rating: ★★★1/2 Liked It

Edward Norton plays a respected Ivy League professor who is lured back to is hometown in Oklahoma where his identical twin brother who makes a modest living as a small time pot dealer has landed himself in trouble with a local unsuspecting drug lord. By far the best thing about this entertaining mash up of genres is watching Edward Norton play off against himself, in the form of these two polar opposite characters. The film takes quite a few sudden violent turns which keeps things very interesting, often changing the course of the story. If you're Edward Norton fan alone, this one is well worth seeing.
This is England
Director: Shane Meadows
Year: 2006
Category: Drama
Rating: ★★★★ Really Liked It

Based on director Shane Meadows personal experiences this confronting story revolves around a troubled young boy growing up in England, set in 1983 at the height of the Falkland War. The film's depictions of blind hatred towards ethnic citizens and the exploiting of the young boy's vulnerability through a personal tragedy leaves the biggest impact. Performances are outlandish but realistic as many of the characters are very outspoken individuals, most notably Stephen Graham as a skinhead ring leader named Combo. This is England is the quintessential film about English jingoism; it's equally captivating and heart breaking.   

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