As Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, et al. add more content, it can be difficult to know what to look for amidst all of the new titles. Every month, I compile a list of particularly noteworthy and interesting movies and TV shows to add to your streaming queues.
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I consider my first viewing of Caddyshack a foundational experience. Granted, I didn’t understand everything that went on — I just thought it was funny when Bill Murray tried to blow up the golf course — but I’ve since come to appreciate Chevy Chase’s screwball humor, the endless site gags and puns, and of course, that sweet, smooth Kenny Loggins soundtrack.
The Shining (January 1)
If you’ve grown tired of jolly holiday cheer, then maybe you need a good horror movie to give you the shivers. And they don’t get any better than this Stanley Kubrick classic from 1980 starring Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, and the creepiest onscreen twins of all time.
Jim Gaffigan: Cinco (January 10)
The comedy giant’s latest stand-up special will be a Netflix exclusive. Suffice to say, there’ll be a lot of jokes about having lots of kids and eating lots of bad food. And they’ll all be hilarious.
It Follows (January 13)
The plot to this indie-horror film seems rather trite: an unstoppable entity tracks down people who’ve had sex and kills them — unless they have sex with someone else first. However, the film garnered lots of acclaim due to its level of suspense, visuals, and creepy soundtrack.
Voltron: Legendary Defender, Season 2 (January 20)
The first season of Voltron: Legendary Defender was a real treat, blending action, humor, and fantastic animation (courtesy of the same studio behind The Legend of Korra). The first season ended on a massive cliffhanger that immediately raised the stakes for the highly anticipated second season, as you can see in the trailer below.
Click here for a complete list of everything arriving and leaving Netflix in January 2017.
Amélie (January 1)
Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s movie about a young Parisian woman helping random strangers is as whimsical and charming as they come. Audrey Tautou is simply enchanting as the titular character and in Jeunet’s boundless imagination, Paris is a city full of endless wonders.
Lethal Weapon 1 – 4 (January 1)
In truth, the Lethal Weapon series probably went on too long, though Jet Li is phenomenal as the villain in Lethal Weapon 4. However, the first two Lethal Weapon movies are action comedy classics, and Danny Glover and Mel Gibson are a match made in movie heaven.
Mission Impossible (January 1)
The Mission Impossible series has grown bigger and crazier with each successive installment thanks to Tom Cruise’s insistence on bigger, crazier action and stunt set pieces (like this one). The first Mission Impossible film is a bit smaller in scope, and probably the closest to a suspense thriller.
WarGames (January 1)
This classic ’80s movie features Matthew Broderick as a smart aleck teenager who inadvertently hacks into a national defense computer and starts the countdown to World War III. I was a kid when WarGames came out; the Cold War was at its height and personal computers were becoming increasingly popular, both of which made WarGames’ concept incredibly cool and absolutely terrifying.
The Path, Season 2 (January 25)
I confess, I haven’t watched any of this Hulu series starring Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) as a man who gets caught up in a cult — but I’ve heard nothing but good things from folks I trust. Apparently, the first season ends with quite the twist that promises to take The Path’s second season in some interesting directions.
Click here for a complete list of everything arriving and leaving Hulu in January 2017.
American History X (January 1)
An incredibly gut-wrenching depiction of how racism and hatred corrupts, American History X stars Edward Norton as a former neo-Nazi who, upon leaving jail, attempts to prevent his younger brother from making the same mistakes he did. Director Tony Kaye disowned American History X due to studio tinkering but there’s no denying the film’s power, especially Norton’s performance.
Hellboy (January 1)
Guillermo del Toro’s adaptation of Mike Mignola’s acclaimed comic book is a solid blend of Lovecraftian horror, superhero action, and fantasy. Ron Perlman is perfectly cast as an extra-dimensional monster with the really big fist who fights with humanity against occult evils.
Swiss Army Man (January 30)
It’s that movie where Daniel Radcliffe (a.k.a. Harry Potter) plays a farting corpse. Paul Dano is a suicidal man trapped on an island who discovers Radcliffe’s corpse — a corpse with all kinds of surprisingly useful abilities (e.g., the aforementioned flatulence).
Click here for a complete list of everything arriving and leaving Amazon Prime in January 2017.