Netflicked: Netflix Instant, April 19-26

Tuesday, 26 April 2011 15:57 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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Netflicked: Netflix Instant, April 19-26

Netflix's streaming Watch Instantly service is fast becoming America's favorite way to watch movies.  The library of available titles is so vast and mutable that you, the avid instant watcher, could no doubt use a guide as you navigate the streaming frontier.  Luckily for you, we'll be here every Tuesday to update you on the latest titles available for instant-watching, as well as bringing attention some gems and enjoyable trainwrecks out there in the instantly watchable wilds.



MOVIES

Not only was Easy A a surprise hit last year, but the high school-set update of 'The Scarlett Letter' also proved that Emma Stone is an outstanding lead actress, more than capable of carrying a breezy comedy with seemingly effortless charm.

Angelina Jolie gets up to her ridiculous cheekbones in equally ridiculous sleeper cell espionage in last summer's Salt.  It's your standard big, dumb summer action movie, with Cold War-style Russian boogeyman and an unstoppably resourceful protagonist, only this time, the hero is played by  crazy-beautiful lady.

Bruce Greenwood, who played Captain Pike in the Star Trek reboot, lends his gravelly voice to Gotham's foremost vigilante in Batman: Under the Red Hood, an animated film in which the Dark Knight goes up against a mysterious and brutal vigilante.

In the sex-obsessed comedic drama Y tu mama tambien, you can see some very different content but a strong stylistic connection to the subsequent work of Mexican auteur Alfonso Cuaron, and outstanding performances Ana Lopez Mercado, Gael Garcia Bernal, and Diego Luna make all their characters' choices feel unfailingly authentic.

Also sex-obsessed, but in a wholly different way, is last year's comedy Hot Tub Time Machine, starring John Cusack, Rob Corddry, Craig Robinson, and Clark Duke as four guys sent back to 1986, where they naturally attempt to keep from interfering with the future.  Unapologetically stupid and unabashedly goofy, you'll either get a kick out of waiting for Crispin Glover to violently lose his arm, or you'll loathe the whole film.

TELEVISION SERIES

Bizarre, non sequitur-heavy animated comedies for kids are all over the place now, but when Hey Arnold! debuted in 1996, it was one a few boldly out there shows on Nickelodeon. 

Check out sexy doctors having sex and practicing medicine over six seasons of the medical drama Grey's Anatomy.

It's rare to be so familiar with the tropes of a show you've never seen, yet pretty much everybody knows how MacGyver rolls.  All seven seasons of industrious action are available instantly to teach us all how to be more resourceful.

Unfortunately, Idris Elba will never get to play the detective Alex Cross in a feature film, but he did star as another detective in ten excellent episodes of the British series Luther.

ON THE WAY OUT

The melodrama Jack, in which Robin Williams plays a ten year-old boy who ages at four times the normal rate, expires on Wednesday, April 27th.

2 Fast 2 Furious, the first sequel in the enduring franchise, ends its Instant run on Sunday, May 1st.

David Lynch's Eraserhead also ceases streaming on Sunday, May 1st.

Horror sequel The Descent: Part 2 plunges into the horrifying steamingless depths on Wednsday, April 27th.

Tim Burton's Batman, starring Michael Keaton as the Caped Crusader and Jack Nicholson as the Joker, expires on Sunday, May 1st.

Natural Born Killers is another film on the way out as of Sunday, May 1st.

DOC OF THE WEEK

Marwencol is a new addition to the Netflix Instant library this week, and it's wholly unique.  In 2008, Mark Hogancamp was followed outside of a bar by five men and beaten almost to death, requiring extensive reconstructive surgery, spending nine days in a coma, and waking up with severe neurological damage, including near total amnesia.  With no memory of his former, alcoholic self and struggling with severe mental and physical limitations, Hogancamp began using old fashioned GI Joes and Barbies to create a fantasy narrative as a means through which to engage with himself and the world.  Gradually, he built a minutely detailed and astonishingly elaborate fictitious WWII era Belgian town, which he christened Marwencol.  The debut directorial feature from editor Jeff Malmberg follows the exploits of Hogancamp's GI Joe doppleganger, while also charting his increasing notice as an artist.  Hogancamp is unfailingly earnest, and the film is at times painfully awkward in its intimacy, but it is also quite moving.  More than that, it tells has some sincere insights about the narratives we all create not just in order to survive a trauma, but to live our daily lives.

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