MMT September 2017 Netflix Picks

Happy Saturday MMT Fam! This Fall equinox has brought with it some pleasant, cooler weather – the perfect time for a stay in movie weekend! I wanted to share a few of my Netflix choices from the month, and of course I want you to share some thoughts if you’ve seen or when you watch them – and if it’s the latter, it’s the perfect “Netflix and Chill (literally)” season … if you add anything to that chill part, it’s on you not me! 😉

First up is the Netflix original film WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY, starring Noomi Rapace, Glenn Close and Willem Dafoe. Rapace in the lead takes on the task of playing “seven” identical sisters, born in a dystopian era where the government has mandated that each family is allowed to have only “one” child – a rule that is monitored by the infamous Child Allocation Bureau (CAB).

Hidden by a rebellious grandfather (Dafoe) after their mother dies during childbirth, the sisters are raised and taught to survive using one sole identity, Karen Settman, while leaving their home on each one’s specified day – which corresponds to their names (Sunday through Saturday, respectively). When Monday goes missing, the remaining sisters fight to keep the truth hidden, avoid capture by CAB and its villanous head (Close), while simultaneously finding out what happened to their sister.

This movie had some campy parts, but at best it is an action-packed futuristic tale filled with “woman” power. Rapace was phenomenal at the task of portraying seven different people/personalities, and Dafoe and Close brought the heavyweight star power to the flick.

For a sci-fi story, there were a couple of plot holes that I thought could have been tighter, especially at the resolution, but the movie was enjoyable and entertaining to view nonetheless.

My second pick from September is the critical hit THE FOUNDER starring Michael Keaton as the late Ray Kroc – a travelling salesman who comes across brothers Mac and Dick McDonald – the originators of the McDonald’s brand – in 1950’s California, becomes enamored with their business setup, and positions himself to take the business away – subsequently creating a billion dollar franchise empire.

To say this story is fascinating, and disheartening, is an understatement. And Keaton is at peak performance, simultaneously making you both captivated by and despise Kroc throughout the entire film.

Written by Robert D. Siegel (The Wrestler) and directed by John Lee Hancock (Saving Mr. Banks), the movie also stars Nick Offerman (Dick McDonald), John Carroll Lynch (Mac McDonald), and Laura Dern as Kroc’s first wife Ethel.

If you haven’t seen this movie, it is truly a must see – and, if you eat at McDonald’s, it might make you question ever stopping by those “golden arches” again.

Okay, since I chose two serious ones, my final pick is really goofy but funny – if you like college boy humor – the original Netflix film NAKED starring Marlon Wayans.

The premise: immature guy (Rob) is heading out-of-town to marry his dream woman (Megan), but faces several obstacles including a reluctant soon to be father-in-law (Dennis Haysbert), a very accomplished ex-boyfriend of his fiancée (Scott Foley), and the unfortunate fact that he keeps waking up naked in an elevator and having to repeat parts of his wedding day before saying his I dos!

Comedy ensues, and led by Wayans and the extremely talented and funny Regina Hall (Girls Trip), the film boasts plenty of sophomoric laughs, and a cameo by singer/songwriter Brian McKnight, while Rob attempts to stop the insanity, change the course of his day, and get married.

Alright family, those are my picks for the month. Let me know what you think, and feel free to leave some recommendations for the coming months – there’s a huge selection on the streaming service and a chance that I haven’t seen them!

Until next thought, Thomasena

MMT Recommends: #FirstTimeISawMe Netflix campaign

I’m a little late to the party, but was so moved with this #FirstTimeISawMe campaign by Netflix that I feel inspired to share my thoughts. When I think back on representation in television and when I first saw images of myself, I was amazed at my reflections. Although I saw persons of color represented during the 70’s and 80’s, most remarkably for me were shows like “Good Times,” “The Jeffersons” and “The Cosby Show,” it wasn’t until the 90’s that I felt like I saw actual representatives of people I knew on TV.

I fell in love with the Charles Dutton led “ROC,” and I scheduled evening classes (i.e. I skipped out on the last hour of class every Thursday night!) around Fox’s old Thursday night lineup of “Martin” and “New York Undercover,” because it included “Living Single” – a series that featured four African-American women navigating life and friendship, to which I could certainly relate.

And after the template was laid in “Living Single” came one of my all-time favorite sitcoms “Girlfriends.” Ooh and the oh, so missed Showtime drama “Soul Food.” Those shows displayed reflections of, not only myself, but people around me. I could empathize with their struggles, because I knew, or knew of, them.

Filmmaker Ava DuVernay shares a similar thought about identifying with characters later in life here:

 

MMT Fam, do you remember the first time you saw yourself on-screen? Do you identify with any character on TV today?

We all know that seeing people who look like you and deal with similar life experiences is powerful, because you inevitably believe you can achieve anything once you’ve seen someone else do it first. Just listen to what MMT fave Marlon Wayans has to say about watching his older siblings:

 

So, shout out to Netflix for all of the shows added to its platform where people are seeing representations of themselves and beautiful representations of others as well. Personally, I’m loving shows like “Luke Cage” and “Daredevil” and enjoy adding movies and shows, where I’ve enjoyed seeing representation, in my queue – like “Mississippi Damned,” “Being Mary Jane,” and “Greenleaf.” Maybe Netflix will work on adding Soul Food the series, Girlfriends and Living Single? Just asking for a friend…lies, you know it’s for me!

And MMT Fam you can check out some of the past reviews of our Netflix Picks, and get some good recommendations for those queues by clicking here.

Until next thought family, Thomasena

 

 

 

MMT June 2017 Netflix Picks

Happy Thursday MMT Family! I’m officially on vacation, but wanted to share a few “Netflix Picks” for you from June. To say I was fascinated, and often overwhelmed, while viewing my first choice – THE KEEPERS – is a gross understatement. This seven part docuseries is centered around the 1969 unsolved murders of Sister Catherine Cesnik and Joyce Helen Malecki – and their link to a priest accused of horrific sexual assaults/abuses.

Unfortunately, I was not aware of the latter part prior to watching this highly recommended series, and so I want to caution readers and give an extreme trigger warning – as multiple victims give very detailed descriptions of various assaults.

As grotesque as the subject matter is, the documentary was brilliant in its depiction of crimes committed over four decades ago – and the cinematography often resembled that of a sophisticated horror/thriller, with elements of deception, spook and dread.

I don’t want to give too much away, as there is something to the “what happens next” vibe of this crime show, but I will say that it doesn’t end in a justice as we’d like it way – since many of the alledged perpetrators of the crimes committed have died, in additional to the several legal hiccups discussed in the film.

What I do want to emphasize is the bravery exhibited by many of the victims, in particular Jean Wehner – who was manipulated by the priest (Joseph Maskell) at the center of the abuse scandal and describes not only sexual abuse, but a repressed memory of Maskell taking her to view Sister Catherine’s corpse, while simultaneously issuing a threat to her life.

Wehner was part of a class action 1994 lawsuit against Maskell – with her and an additional complaintant losing per Maryland’s statue of limitations.

Also worth mentioning is the amazing investigative journalism and crime solving performed by two amateurs and former students of Sister Catherine – Gemma Hoskins and Abbie Schaub – with a passion for exposing the truth and finding justice for their beloved teacher. You can follow their continued fight at The Keepers Official Group — Justice for Catherine Cesnik and Joyce Malecki facebook page.

My second pick deals with the same topic of abuse – with a viewing payoff in knowing it is not only a true story, but that justice was served. I’m referring to the film SPOTLIGHT – which highlights the Pulitzer prize-winning Boston Globe news team that unearthed a cover-up of abuse throughout the Roman Catholic church. You can read my full November 2015 review of the film in the archives (sorry family, my hyperlinks aren’t working on this computer I’m using temporarily in New Orleans!).

And for my third pick from this month was one I’d also previously reviewed in November 2016, but it was recently put on the streaming service and I needed the comic relief. So, after you watch the heaviness mentioned above, you can get a few healthy, fun and kid-friendly laughs with one of my favorite 2016 films – TROLLS. Not only is the music phenomenal, but it really is a fun story – and I didn’t think it was as overtop for kids as some of the kid films I’d viewed the last couple of years.

Alright family, you’ll be hearing from me next week, but until then I’ll be living it up in the Big Easy! Share a comment or two after you’ve viewed the picks mentioned and let me know what you think.

Until next thought, Thomasena

 

 

 

 

 

 

MMT April 2017 Netflix Picks

What’s new MMT Fam! I have to be honest, between catching up on work-related projects, taking care of home tasks, the MS Walk campaign, and watching a few of my TV faves – Underground, American Crime, Feud: Bette and Joan, Shots Fired, Black*ish, Empire, and Greenleaf have all had my full attention 😉 – I didn’t watch anything new on Netflix this month. But that doesn’t mean I don’t have any recommendations for you to check out, and it doesn’t mean I haven’t been on the service…raises hand slowly to admit I started re-binging the Netflix Celia Cruz telenovela and completely re-binged the first season of Queen Sugar now on Hulu! 🙂

The first thing I want to acknowledge is the passing of celebrated writer/producer/director Mr. Jonathan Demme, whose seminal works include hit films like Philadelphia, Rachel Getting Married, and the harrowing psychological thriller The Silence of the Lambs – the latter of which won him the Academy Award for Best Director, as well as introduced us to Anthony Hopkin’s Oscar-winning portrayal of Dr. Hannibal Lecter (a character first seen in the 1986 Michael Mann film Manhunter) and Jodie Foster’s equally lauded Academy and Golden Globe award performance as Clarice Starling.

Although I wish all of the aforementioned Demme films – in addition to the movie adaptation of Toni Morrison’s novel Beloved starring Oprah Winfrey, Thandie Newton, Kimberly Elise and Danny Glover – were on Netflix, they are not. However, there are two films – one drama and one concert feature – directed by the iconic director currently streaming on the service.

So, the first pick from this month is The Manchurian Candidate, the 2004 remake of the 1962 classic starring Denzel Washington, Liev Schreiber, Meryl Streep and Kimberly Elise. The movie follows Major Ben Marco (Denzel Washington), a Gulf War veteran who finds himself having terrible nightmares years after his squadron was ambushed. He begins to suspect everything he previously remembered from that event – which includes squad-mate Sergeant Raymond Shaw (Liev Schreiber), now a vice-presidential candidate, being a hero. As Marco’s doubts deepen, and his clarity sharpens, Shaw’s nears his political goal and Marco must figure out the truth and stop and diabolical plan against immeasurable odds.

Similar to experiences I have with the films Philadelphia and Silence of the Lambs, when I catch this political thriller in syndication anywhere I feel compelled to watch – no matter that I own them all either in physical or digital copy.

My next pick is the Demme directed 2016 performance film Justin Timberlake + The Tennessee Kids. This entertaining movie highlights Timberlake’s energetic Las Vegas show, which was the culmination of his two-year 20/20 Experience tour. Filmed over the final nights of the tour, Demme gives a 90-minute look at both the background players and the man of the hour, as well as the final dynamic stage result.

My last pick ties into those previously mentioned TV faves, since the first season of the OWN series Greenleaf is now streaming! The series follows the lives of the fictional, Memphis mega church owning Greenleaf family, centering on the story of Grace – who returns home after a 20 year absence to mourn the tragic loss of a younger sibling. Betrayals and abuses are uncovered, and hidden secrets are revealed throughout the season.

Now in its second season, the season one premiĂšre of this show drew 3.04 million viewers – more than any other show on the OWN network at that time. It really is “must see” TV viewing and I caution you not to start it unless you have time for another episode or two. 😉

And I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that the last episode of another fave mentioned earlier – Shots Fired  which airs on the FOX network on Wednesday nights – was directed by the late Jonathan Demme, who passed on the same day it aired. I call that providence. Rest in Peace Sir.

Until next thought, Thomasena

 

 

 

 

 

 

MMT March 2017 Netflix Picks

Happy Friday MMT Fam! So, here are my Netflix picks from the month of March, albeit the first is a repeat since you must be prepared for the April 7 release of season 2 of THE GET DOWN.

In my prior review, I described the series as “an unconventional, hip-hop fantasy/musical/drama inspired by the pioneering days of DJing and rapping.” I’ve read varied opinions of the show, expressing sentiments from love to darn near hate, but I believe a lot of people feeling the latter were not prepared, or not willing, to suspend disbelief and enjoy the fantasy parts – or they are just hardcore hip hop fans that don’t want their memories, and the culture’s history, “disturbed.” However, I still believe this series, and the story, is good TV. So, if you enjoyed the first season re-watch – and if you haven’t yet tuned in, take my recommendation and catch up so you can be ready for season 2!

My next Netflix pick is a film that was released last year and lovingly reviewed by Mr. Darryl King for this site, CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR. I viewed it again this month, and enjoyed it just as much, if not more, than when I watched it on the big screen – mostly because I was able to rewind some of my favorite actions scenes. 🙂

In Civil War, we find the Avengers against, well the Avengers – as the group splits on the decision to fight to maintain their independence or concede to monitoring and government control. It’s in this film that fans get their first introduction to Chawick Boseman’s Black Panther before the movie’s February 2018 release, as well as that of the new “Spiderman” Tom Holland before the release of Spider-Man: Homecoming (opening in theaters on 7/7/17).

My last pick is a bit of a somber one, but definitely gives good food for thought. BURNING SANDS is a fictional story that highlights the still current and controversial topic of hazing on college campuses. The film follows the journey of protagonist Zurich, a student pledging a fictional fraternity, and his final week on line which culminates in a very tragic “hell night.”

Prior to watching the movie, I’d read about some of the backlash to Gerald McMurray’s directorial dĂ©but, but here‘s a fair article, written by a member of Delta Sigma Theta, and interview with McMurray that may shed light on why he felt this story was important to tell. I really want to know your thoughts about this one if you’ve seen it already, or after you’ve viewed the film, in the comments.

I walked away with the belief the film didn’t “only” portray the negative side of Greek life, as some have mentioned, as there were scenes that displayed or noted positives such as charity and lifelong fellowship. But, it did paint a powerful portrait of the need to hold those accountable that engage in injurious – and sometimes fatal – actions towards others. Unfortunately, this is still a hotly debated and taboo subject on many campuses, not solely HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) – the latter being where the movie is set.

Okay, that’s it for March family. You know the drill, leave a comment or two and let me know what you think about this month’s picks!

Until next thought, Thomasena

 

 

 

“Weak”end of Netflix an MMT review of Iron Fist by contributor Darryl King

We have been spoiled! Over the past two years, bequeathed unto us by Marvel, has been some of the best binge worthy television. Spending a few days, or dedicating a weekend, to engulf shows like “Daredevil”, “Jessica Jones” and “Luke Cage” was a pleasure until
”Iron Fist.” Because of their incredible track record, I hunkered down and digested it and let’s just say it doesn’t measure up.

“Iron Fist,” or Danny Rand is the latest Marvel Netflix hero, the son of rich parents who die in a plane accident. Danny survives the crash and is saved by mystical monks who raise him in the magical city of K’un-Lun, a city protected by the Iron Fist.

The Iron Fist is chosen by winning a battle with a dragon, then endowed with the dragon’s power, and when the anointed one harnesses their ‘Chi’ that incredible power becomes a great weapon. Sounds cool, right?

So, where does this show go wrong? The problem starts with the show runner/producer. Unlike other Marvel Netflix series, Scott Buck presents a very lackluster and often boring series and mythos. Other Marvel show runners have shown the dexterity to adapt and change the original comic content and deliver a better and watchable product.

For example, one of the beautiful aspects of Marvel’s Netflix world is the characterization of New York. Fortified with vibrant colors and distinct locations, these shows have provided a lovely depiction of the Big Apple, but “Iron Fist” sorely lacks in this area. Add in the fact that we don’t visually visit the magical city of K’un-Lun, and the show suffers greatly and misses an opportunity at world building.

Martial Arts should have been the saving grace for this show but the choreography and stunt work at most times was abysmal and uninspiring
Daredevil was so much better. “Iron Fist” even botched the infamous hallway fight scene that has become the signature of Marvel Netflix shows. The cheesy music soundtrack during these fight scenes further hinders and shackles the action.

Speaking of sound, there were too many times when the sound mixing was uneven and particularly weak for a television show, at times the outdoor scenes sounded like they were recorded in a room.

The direction of the episodes was less than stellar, very slow paced with poor visual conception and amateurish editing – making an hour program feel longer. But ultimately, “Iron Fist” is derailed by average dialogue and a lead character who doesn’t capture your imagination and whom you never believe is Iron Fist.

Finn Jones who plays Iron Fist, portrays his character as a whining brat who never grows beyond his circumstances. I haven’t seen anyone this whiny since Hayden Christensen played Anakin Skywalker.

Overall, the show spends too much time on board room business intrigue – only without the intrigue. Danny Rand shares too much screen time with his childhood friends/partners/nemesis, the Meachum family, often spotlighting them as the main story.

The first 5 episodes could have been compacted into one or two episodes and the show doesn’t become binge worthy until the last 4 episodes.

What works for the “Iron Fist” series are the opening title sequence and some of its secondary characters. Rosario Dawson reprises her role as Claire Temple, who has become the glue of the Street Level series world, providing some much-needed heart and passion for this show. Wai Ching Ho (Madame Gao) continues her stellar portrayal of the Asian master/savant with mystical powers.

Clifton Davis plays a Board member of Rand Enterprises who adds some spice and gravitas to an otherwise stoic storyline. Colleen Wing, portrayed by Jessica Henwick, is a wonderful addition to the Marvel Netflix family with a character who is captivating and exciting and who has the greatest arc in the series.

What fans wanted was a show with great martial arts and the “power” of the Iron Fist, and we weren’t given either. “Iron Fist” is more disappointing than bad and it almost derails the up and coming The Defenders series. So, after a long weekend of binging, I can’t defend “Iron Fist!”

Darryl King is a video director, film writer and avid Marvel/DC comic book/movie lover. Check out his reviews of Luke Cage, Dr. Strange and Captain America: Civil War right here on MMT.

MMT February 2017 Netflix Picks

Happy Oscar Sunday MMT Fam! I must admit, since I’ve only posted an award schedule previously this year, that I’m a bit disinterested in the Academy Award area – but not for lack of something to celebrate! I am very much aware, and proud to say, that this year we’ll witness a record six black actors – Denzel Washington, Ruth Negga, Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, Octavia Spencer and Viola Davis – represented throughout each acting category, and Dev Patel as only the third actor of Indian descent and 13th of Asian descent to receive a nomination (Best Supporting for Lion).

It’s also worth noting that the Best Supporting Actress nominations of Viola Davis, Naomie Harris and Octavia Spencer is the first time multiple black nominees have been in that category since 1985 – when both Margaret Avery and Oprah Winfrey were nominated for The Color Purple. And the nomination of Ms. Viola also makes her the most nominated black actress in the history of the Oscars!

There are a couple of other areas that I’ll be noting, like the Best Documentary Feature category – where first time nominee Ava DuVernay  is being recognized for her work 13th – the first African American female director nominated for feature film – along with directors Roger Ross Williams (Life, Animated), Raoul Peck (I Am Not Your Negro) and Ezra Edelman (O.J.: Made in America) – and the one I’m most anticipating, Best Cinematography, where Bradford Young is the first African-American to receive the nomination for Arrival.

If you’re not familiar with Young’s cinematography, and you have a Netflix account, you’re in luck because there are several listed on the service. I’ve reviewed a few of them on this site previously, so I will put up trailers and hyperlink titles (if there’s a prior post) below for convenience. There are also two of his works – Mother of George and A Most Violent Year – that are no longer streaming on Netflix, but are available if you have the DVD plan.  But if you can find them somewhere else, and haven’t viewed already, they’re worth the find. I’ll never forget watching Mother of George at Blackstar one year, and the collective gasp the audience gave at the twist! It was truly a gut-punch moment.

Let me know if you’ll be watching the Oscars tonight, and what you’re most interested in seeing in the comments below. And let me know if you’ve seen any of the recommended films!

PS – you know I wouldn’t mind seeing Davis, and Mr. Washington especially as writer/director/actor, take the gold for Fences! If you missed it, check out the MMT chat with stars Russell Hornsby and Jovan Adepo from the film here.

Until next thought, Thomasena

Middle of Nowhere

Mississippi Damned

Pariah

 

MMT January 2017 Netflix Picks

Happy Sunday MMT Fam! Netflix has added some great titles to its repertoire since I last posted recommendations back in November 2016. When I saw that it acquired the 2015 Fox Telecolombia series CELIA I was ecstatic! An 80 (yes, you read that right, 8-0) episode scripted series based on the life of Afro-Cuban music legend Celia Cruz, “Celia” is a fact and fiction mixed telenovela that explores the singer’s life from her young years in Havana, Cuba through her over four-decade career, to her death from brain cancer at age 77.

At its core – and even with themes of racism, colorism, sexism, and the rise of the Communist takeover in Cuba – this series is an extended love story of the “Queen of Salsa” (born Úrsula Hilaria Celia de la Caridad Cruz Alfonso) and her husband of 41 years and longtime manager Pedro Knight. Both characters are portrayed, wonderfully might I add, by two sets of actors – Jeirmarie Osorio and Modesto Lacen, and Aymee Nuviola and Willie Denton as the younger and older couples respectively. It was a bit odd once the switch happens, because I adored the chemistry between the former, so I’ll give you a heads up to brace yourself for episode 55!

Now, I emphasize again the word “telenovela,” i.e. soap operatic – with several characters that are highly or overly dramatic (think of “Ugly Betty” or “Jane The Virgin” as dramas). And note that the series is in Spanish, however there are subtitles in English. But, if you make it past the aforementioned, you are surely in for an entertaining treat. And with that many episodes, you can watch the series in between other favorites during hiatus. However, if you’re like me, you’ll do an almost two-week binge – it was highly addictive!

My next two picks are based on reviews that previously occurred on this site. The first is the newly added 13th: A Conversation with Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay, an interview where the journalistic maven sits down with acclaimed writer/director DuVernay to discuss her groundbreaking, and 2017 Oscar-nominated, documentary and the historically oppressive American prison system. You can read my review of “13th” and get additional information about the film here.

Lastly, the highly praised CGI fantasy adventure THE JUNGLE BOOK was also recently added to the streaming service, and I must admit I haven’t been able to fit in a watch (I’m still paying for my “Celia” binge!) but I’ve been waiting for this one since Darryl’s review – which you can read in its entirety here.

Alright MMT Fam, those are my choices from this month. Let me know if you’ve checked out, or plan to, any of the above, and/or share some recommendations of your own in the comments below.

Until next thought, Thomasena

PS – you can check out a trailer of “Celia” below:

 

MMT November 2016 Netflix Picks

Happy last day of November MMT Fam! This year has “flown” by, and it seemed especially challenging for me these last couple of months with being caretaker for both a sick parent and pet – the latter of whom passed last week, and I am still a bit heartbroken. But, I was able to take time to watch two films over the Thanksgiving holiday that I very much wanted to see since their addition to Netflix – 13TH and ZOOTOPIA.

I cannot emphasize properly how remarkable Ava DuVernay’s 13TH is in detailing the impact of the American criminal system on African-Americans from post-slavery to modern times – based on a loophole in the 13th amendment that specifies slavery is allowed as use for punishment of a crime. I was in awe of the documentary, the images and stories displayed, and the mixture of scholars, educators, historians, activists, and politicians who expounded on policies and cases past and present.

It is a heavy documentary, but oh so necessary, and offers a precise and well supported view of the duality of convictions/mass incarceration for persons of color vs. persons of non-color – especially for those who have difficulty, or simply refuse to believe there is a difference in treatment for the African-American population.

To further drive the last point home, and how it’s shaped cultural attitudes, towards the end of film DuVernay focuses on many who were killed at the hands of law enforcement (or those who self-identified as authority, i.e. George Zimmerman’s self-inflated neighborhood watch role) – with video and/or audio clips – also adding the case of Kalief Browder, the 22 year-old who committed suicide in 2015 after being falsely charged and arrested at age 16 and spending three years without conviction at Rikers Island.

And for anyone who wishes to show the documentary in public, and is seeking clearance, Ms. DuVernay tweeted yesterday that Netflix has given its first ever, general waiver:

My second pick from this month is the Disney CGI animated hit ZOOTOPIA. A funny, and socially relevant on a pre-school, school age level, film featuring Officer Judy Hopps, who becomes the first bunny on the force and is forced to solve a mystery/conspiracy, with sly fox Nick Wilde, before entire species are forever banned from Zootopia.

Witty, socially savvy, and just plain fun, “Zootopia” is a great watch for the entire family, and is packed with positive messages of acceptance, perseverance, and community.

Okay MMT Fam, those are my two picks from November. Let me know if you watch, especially 13TH, and leave a comment or two sharing your thoughts!

Until next thought, Thomasena

 

 

 

 

MMT October 2016 Netflix Picks

Hey MMT Fam! So the picks from this month are all dedicated to those in the family that enjoy a good old scare or thrill around this time of year! I don’t celebrate Halloween, but I can appreciate a good thrill ride or a scare or two, and several of the films I’ve enjoyed in the past have made their way to Netflix.

The first pick isn’t scary, but it’s a good one for ages 13 and up – THE ADDAMS FAMILY. A reboot of the classic family TV comedy, the film stars the late Raul Julia and Anjelica Huston – who were spot on as Gomez and Morticia Addams – and rounds out the cast with Christopher Lloyd (Uncle Fester), Christina Ricci who was a fabulous fright as Wednesday, and Jimmy Worksman as Pugsley.

The next pick is a nod to Marvel/DC contributor Darryl King, and the sequel for one of MY favorite Marvel characters, BLADE II. Also infused with humor, this is R-rated action with gore and definitely not for little ones. Highlighting Wesley Snipes and his real life martial arts inspired moves, the film finds the titular character battling super vampires and helping those (vampires) being targeted. Mind you, Blade hates both – notwithstanding he is part vampire…oh, just watch it! Highly entertaining, and you’ll get to see a very funny Ron Perlman as the vampire Reinhardt.

So I know that Lifetime did a remake for this next pick – FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC – but I still enjoy the 1987 version based on the V. C. Andrews novel. Forbidden family secrets, child neglect and murder are entangled in this psychological horror thriller – that was actually supposed to be directed by Wes Craven, who’d created a draft screenplay, but it ended up in the hands of Jeffrey Bloom. It’s campy and creepy, and a good choice for those who don’t enjoy as much gore as a “Blade.”

And speaking of the late Wes Craven, you can’t mention the horror genre without including at least one of his films! So, I’m first recommending the documentary NEVER SLEEP AGAIN: THE ELM STREET LEGACY which chronicles the creation of his classic “A Nightmare on Elm Street” franchise. And thrown in for good measure is WES CRAVEN’S NEW NIGHTMARE where the infamous Freddy character begins to stalk real life actors from the franchise, including Heather Lagenkamp who famously played lead character Nancy in the first film. I mean, at first he haunts dreams, and then he comes to life…you can’t win! I’ll dedicate that last one to horror contributor Samantha, we all know she likes it scary!

Trivia question: which famous actor, with a knack for playing the macabre, made his début in the first Elm Street movie? Leave your answer in the comments, and share a favorite scary movie or two for others to check out!

And, for the MMT Fam without Netflix, there are a slew of scary movies/thrillers over on the free apps Crackle and Tubi TV! I’ve downloaded both, and recently watched one of my faves THE DEAD ZONE starring Christopher Walken on Tubi. And Crackle has a few faves that I’d recommend, including “The Craft,” “The Skeleton Key,” and “Tales From the Hood!” You can use both apps on mobile, tablet and desktop.

PS – is it me or is Donald Trump doing a Martin Sheen from “The Dead Zone” impersonation? 😉

Alright that’s it for me fam. Let me know if check out any of the listed choices! Until next thought, Thomasena