If you’re like me, you spend more time looking for something to watch on Netflix than actually watching anything. The fact is there is just too much choice and there is a lot of garbage on there. After spending most of the past two weeks trudging through the Netflix categories and genres I found some hidden gems. Maybe if someone reading this hasn’t seen any of the movies and shows I picked it might encourage you to check them out.
Now, I’m not going to point out the obvious great things on Netflix (Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Wallace & Gromit *thats a joke* etc.) and the things that everyone on the planet has seen already. I tried to focus movies and shows buried deep in the Netflix catalogue and things you wouldn’t normally click on to watch. Of course, these are taken from US Netflix and may not be available on the far worse Canadian version. Here are some picks in no particular order.
This is a badass action flick from South Korea. It’s almost like Jet Li was cast in an old school Mel Gibson action movie. There are some slow points in the movie but overall it’s pretty solid throughout. People get F’d up in this movie and shit gets very stabby in the best possible way. This one ranks high in the “you should watch this right now if you haven’t already” category.
Specifically the serial called “City of Death”(pictured above). I’m not a Doctor Who or Sc-Fi guy at all but this is awesome in it’s shittyness. It was co-written by Douglas Adams who is best known for writing the Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy. Despite the ridiculousness of the premise of an alien trying to steal the Mona Lisa in order to travel back in time to save his race, it’s pretty grounded for a Doctor Who plot back in 1979. I’m just amazed a show was made with such an ugly lead actor.
If you like classic horror movies you’re going to absolutely love this movie. It was released in 2009 but you would have no idea watching it. Ti West, the director, did an incredible job making it look like a slasher movie from 1982. I actually rented this movie from Queen Video in Toronto on a recommendation from the cashier and was more than pleasantly surprised. I noticed it on Netflix and it got an instant re-watch. Don’t let the cover fool you!
This is another movie I rented before I re-watched it on Netflix. I was at Eye Sore Cinema looking for scary Halloween movies and the clerk suggested it after I said that Martyrs was way too fucked up. It’s a French suspense horror thriller that really gets to you because the plot is feasible. Highly recommended. I watched it after seeing Calvaire, a fucked up Belgian movie (not available on Netflix) and it still scared the hell out of me.
One thing Netflix has a shit ton of is nature and space documentaries. The entire Blue Planet series is worth watching. It’s visually stunning and narrated very well. “The Deep” episode is very fascinating. Seeing all those gross species of deep water fish with their gross faces. I listened to a Stuff You Should Know podcast on bioluminescence that I found interesting and this documentary puts a nice visual to it.
Not another found footage movie! Yes, another found footage movie but this one isn’t a horror. It’s actually more like a Lord of The Rings kind of found footage movie. There are definitely some eye roll moments in this one but it’s pretty fun. Some of the special effect aren’t mind blowing but if you buy into it being a movie and not a traditional found footage style documentary it’s a really good time. Plus, there are some laugh out loud moments at the ridiculous premise.
This is a late edition update to this post because I watched it just after posting. This is a wicked foreign sci-fi thriller movie. Just watching the layers of this story unfold is amazing. All I can say is that there’s time travel, middle aged violence and hot Spanish chick boobs. Need I say more? Plus, the character with the towel wrapped around his face looks like Darkman. It’s like a lame European version of Looper.
Some other great picks on Netflix that aren’t really hidden gems but are for sure worth watching or re-watching…
Bronson – Tom Hardy is a lunatic in this. If you haven’t seen it you’re just as nuts as he is.
The Game – Classic Michael Douglas. You’ve probably seen it a long time ago… watch it again. Trust.
Gangster No. 1 – Siiick movie. Malcom McDowell too.
Jiro Dreams of Sushi - A documentary about sushi. After watching this you’ll want to work really hard at one thing forever.
Okay… well, that was a lot. If there’s anything you highly recommend on Netflix that I didn’t mention please leave a comment and let me know.