The Netflix Stream: Week of April 19th, 2011

I hate to say it, but this is a bad week for Netflix fans. We’re losing two movies that I highlighted in the past as some of the most interesting that Netflix has to offer, and we’re gaining another big group of movies I’ve never heard of. At least some of them have titles that remind me of good movies.

Entering the Stream
  1. Underworld(4/22): Sorry folks, there’s no Kate Beckinsale here, no Bill Nighy and definitely no cool fight scenes between vampires and werewolves. This is a 1996 thriller starring Denis Leary, Joe Montegna and Abe Vigoda. Reviews from critics are pretty mixed, but don’t stand out one way or another. If you’re a fan of ‘Rescue Me’, you might want to give it a go.
  2. Le Professionnel(4/22): Ready to be impressed? Without even looking it up, I was able to determine that ‘Le Professionnel’ translates to ‘The Professional’. Unfortunately, this one wasn’t made by Luc Besson, but by Georges Lautner – also French. To be completely fair, the movie looks pretty good and does feature the music of Ennio Morricone, which is always worth hearing.
  3. Heat(4/22): Nine years before Michael Mann made his ‘Heat’, and twenty years before he made the terrible ‘Miami Vice’, a man named Dick Richards used the title for a Burt Reynolds movie about gambling. According to Roger Ebert’s review of the movie, ‘Heat’ starts well and then goes downhill from there.
Leaving the Stream
  1. A Boy and His Dog(4/21): Back when we first started this blog, I did a few posts under the title “One From the Vault,” highlighting some of the movies that are readily available on Netflix streaming but unavailable on DVD or Blu-ray. The first one to come to mind, and the first I wrote about, is ‘A Boy and His Dog‘, which is still one of my favorites. It’s one of the finest post-apocalyptic movies I’ve seen, and it truly set the tone for the future of the genre.
  2. Alice(4/21): The second movie I highlighted is Jan Svankmajer’s bizarre stop-motion retelling of ‘Alice in Wonderland’. It’s not whimsical or fun, and it’s not a film that everyone will feel comfortable watching. The sound design, visuals and lack of music all make for a very strange viewing experience.
  3. Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome(4/22): Based on my love of the post-apocalypse, I should be a big ‘Mad Max’ film, but I’m not. It can be generally agreed that the third installment isn’t great, but it does give you the opportunity to tell this joke.

4 comments

  1. This version of Alice is, hands down, one of the coolest versions I have ever seen. Its Czech, so it is dubbed, but there is not a whole lot of dialogue. Give it a few minutes – the opening 2-3 minutes are pretty bad, but the show quickly grows to what is perhaps my favorite interpretation of this story!

  2. I’m guessing I’m one of the few who agree with Ebert about HEAT. I too, think it’s just a so-so film. Never understood all the “love” it gets from many movie fans.

    • The review he’s talking about here is the review for the Burt Reynolds ‘Heat’ that will be on Netflix, not the Michael Mann ‘Heat’ that I think you’re referring two. Ebert like Mann’s ‘Heat’, gave it 3 1/2 stars.

  3. yeah after you see this heat , you wont get the two confused. has anyone else noticed all the coming soon to instant on a lot of miramax titles? i guess that rumor a couple weeks ago is true.

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