Yikes! There’s a lot leaving Netflix this week. Most of it, thankfully, is pretty bad. No one’s going to miss ‘Transmorphers,’ ‘Zombie Death House,’ or ‘3 Ninjas Kick Back,’ but there’s some classic stuff in there that you absolutely need to see while you’ve got the chance.
12 Monkeys (8/31)
1995 was a big year for Brad Pitt. After a fairly long stretch of being pretty without contributing a lot to movies, he starred in both ‘Se7en‘ and ‘12 Monkeys,’ which gave him a reputation as a real actor. This was also a fantastic opportunity for Bruce Willis, taking him out of that ‘Die Hard‘ role and showing off his acting chops. It’s also one hell of a good movie, and one of my favorite Terry Gilliam flicks.
The War Wagon (8/31)
Just as ‘Inception‘ is a heist movie with some neat science fiction elements, ‘The War Wagon‘ is a heist movie that’s presented like a traditional western. That’s not to say that ‘The War Wagon’ isn’t a great flick – it’s a fantastic watch and stars the combination of John Wayne and Kirk Douglas.
The Dead Zone (9/1)
Before David Cronenberg made his other mainstream horror flick, ‘The Fly,’ he helmed ‘The Dead Zone,’ an adaptation of the Stephen King novel of the same name. ‘The Dead Zone’ may not carry the same artistic weight as movies like ‘Eastern Promises‘ or ‘A History of Violence,’ but it’s a solid movie with performances by Christopher Walken, Tom Skerritt and Martin Sheen.
I try to call out important films in Leaving the Stream – movies that should be a part of anyone’s quest for film literacy or that are just generally great. ‘Hatchet‘ isn’t one of those. It’s just a funny movie with some horror elements that stars Joel Moore, who you’ll recognize as J.P. from ‘Grandma’s Boy’ and Norm from ‘Avatar.’ I think he’s completely underrated as a comedy actor, and ‘Hatchet’ gives him plenty of room to show off.