Netflicked: Netflix Instant, September 6-13

Tuesday, 13 September 2011 08:54 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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Netflicked: Netflix Instant, September 6-13

Netflix's streaming Watch Instantly service is fast becoming America's favorite way to watch movies (instantly). 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 even some enjoyable calamities out there in the instantly watchable wilds.

MOVIES

over the last few decades, spoof movies have been little more than cheap, lazy pop-culture shout-outs that forget to actually be, you know, funny.  Airplane!, which spoofs the disaster movies of the 1970's, is arguably one of the funniest movies ever made.  It doesn't forget to spoof its target, but more importantly, it's packed with absurdity, visual invention, and seemingly endless cleverness.  Required viewing.

Another bit of required viewing: John Carpenter's Big Trouble in Little China, a comedy adventure starring Kurt Russell as a truck driver who gets involved in supernatural martial arts shenanigans.  Carpenter's most fun movie that holds up to viewing after viewing without ever losing its propulsive, ridiculous joy.

Like its title, Good Will Hunting is exceedingly on-the-nose and thematically tidy, but solid direction from Gus Van Sant, a strong central performance from Matt Damon, and a couple knockout monologues make it worth watching and enjoying for what it is.  Also, Ben Affleck's surprisingly funny here, as in the scene where poses as the title character and demands a "reee-tain-ahhh" from a potential employer.

In John Hughes' Weird Science, two dorky virgins use science to create the teenage boy's idea of the perfect woman, played by Kelly LeBrock.  Her magical powers allow for all manner of nuttiness, including a massive party crashed by Road Warrior villains, making Weird Science a reliably good time.  Also, a young Robert Downey Jr. plays a thoroughly 80's bully.

The seventh and probably closing film in the Saw franchise, Saw: The Final Chapter, was released in 3D last year, which allowed audiences to experience rusty, horrific torture contraptions in three dimensions.  Having never seen the film in either format, I can't say whether it holds up in two dimensions, but the series definitely has its hardcore devotees.

TELEVISION SERIES

it's up for debate whether or not Breaking Bad is the best series currently on television, but I'm going to go ahead and make the in-no-way-controversial assertion that Breaking Bad is, in fact, the best series currently on television.  The first seasons of the AMC series are now available to stream on Netflix, and it's exactly the sort of show that will keep you up until 4:00 am saying, "Just one more episode."  The story only gets better as the show goes along, and the central performances from Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul only get deeper and more rewarding.  Don't think about, jut start watching.  Or rewatching.

Beavis and Butthead are returning to MTV with new episodes in no time at all, but Volume 1 of The Mike Judge Collection will allow you to familiarize yourself and go back to a simpler time when two giggling half-wits shocked the parents of America.

ON THE WAY OUT

One episode of the wonderful BBC oceanic documentary The Blue Planet: Seas of Life - Tidal Seas/Coasts expires on Thursday, September 15th.

Francis Ford Coppola's masterful The Conversation, which stars Gene Hackman and John Cazale, stops streaming on Friday, September 16th.

Supercop, which teams Jackie Chan and Michelle Yeoh to appropriately action-packed effect, should be streamed before Sunday, September 18th.

Crazy-fun cult sci-fi comedy The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension expires on Monday, September 19th.

DOC OF THE WEEK

By all rights, your streaming week ought to be busy with three seasons Breaking Bad, but if you're down for some documentary action, King Corn: You Are What You Eat should cover the requisite bases.  Directed by Aaron Woolf, the doc is entertaining and funny, but is more importantly, it's a smart and informative examination of the subsidized agriculture in America.  It is, in many respects, a frequently-shocking examination of corn's ubiquity in the food industry and how it impacts us as humans who eat in the modern U.S.

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