What to watch on Netflix this month

By CLTure Writers

April 28, 2018

Our writers are dedicated to guiding you toward the very best entertainment in Charlotte and beyond, especially if you can watch it while choosing which front row seat to sit in because you want to see the new Avengers movie on opening weekend but waited too long to buy tickets. Our staff writers and creatives will help you sift through the myriad of options on Netflix to help you find very the best movies, documentaries, and TV series. Here is what we’ll be watching this season:

Here is what we’ll be watching:

Kodachrome (movie) – The latest Netflix Original, the Mark Raso-directed Kodachrome, focuses heavily on man’s relationship with art and the way futurist progression breaks down what makes art worth enjoying – the perception of tangibility. Music label rep Matt Ryder (Jason Sudeikis) is already having a rough day when he’s approached by a strange woman (Elizabeth Olsen). The woman tells him that his estranged father Ben (Ed Harris) is dying and that Ben wants Matt to accompany him on a cross-country journey to Parsons, Kansas, the home of the last shop using the Kodachrome process to develop photos. With the backdrop of technological obsolesce as the driving force within the story, Raso and his screenwriter Jonathan Tropper craft a grounded narrative of two men in crisis whose journey doesn’t so much repair them, as offer bittersweet closure. Replete with fantastic performances from a top tier cast, Raso’s enthralling direction, and Tropper’s meticulous and captivating script, Kodachrome is a highlight picture of 2018 that’s not to be missed.- Douglas Davidson, Film Writer

L.A. Confidential (movie) – In 1997, while teenagers directed a good portion of the American economy toward Titanic, grownups and film-lovers sought cinematic refuge in L.A. Confidential. Brilliantly adapted from James Ellory’s wickedly elaborate pulp novel, L.A. Confidential reminds us just how much fun film noir can be. The movie is rife with tough guy talk, heart-of-gold hookers, misdirected masculinity, dizzying double-crosses, and sawed-off shotguns. Where most movies of its kind are cloaked in shadow, L.A. Confidential is photographed in bright and sunny clarity, a sly California counterpoint to the corruption that bolsters the byzantine storyline. The all-star ensemble features a perfect pre-Gladiator Russell Crowe, an Oscar-winning turn by Kim Basinger and, given his fall from grace, a retrospectively poignant turn from Kevin Spacey as a not-so-good good guy. With its compromised characters, shiny surfaces, and sleazy underbelly, L.A. Confidential is a criminally enjoyable Lewinsky-era love letter to old Hollywood. Twenty years later, it’s still a helluva way to spend a Saturday night. – Dan Cava, Film Editor

Gerald’s Game (movie) – Stephen King adaptations are a dime a dozen but, within that analogy, Gerald’s Game is worth a good five dollars. It focuses a woman’s mental deterioration after her husband dies during sex…while she is still handcuffed to a bed. Things only get weirder from there. Put bluntly, Mike Flanagan’s minimalist thriller is the best Netflix original film to date and features some of the most harrowing scenes of physical, mental and emotional torture seen in any modern thriller in recent memory. Cap this off with Carla Gugino’s Oscar-worthy performance and you have a killer film worth getting kinky over. – Hunter Heilman, Film Writer

Ram Dass, Going Home (documentary short) – Ram Dass, born Richard Alpert, is a renowned American spiritual teacher with a fascinating and somewhat controversial history. After being fired from Harvard for offenses related to his experimental academic research with psychedelic drugs in the 1960s, Alpert went on to study with an Indian guru, who gave him his name change and introduced him to a spirituality based in mindfulness. Ram Dass wrote the seminal work Be Here Now in 1971 and is often credited with bringing mindfulness and a higher consciousness belief-system to mainstream America. Now 87 years old and on the other side of a stroke that left him paralyzed on his right side, Ram Dass has discovered there is more to learn than he could have ever imagined, even in the midst of what is likely the sunset of his life. This film captures the lush landscape of Maui, where Ram Dass resides, as well as the beautiful, peace-filled existence of a man who truly lives what he teaches. – Michelle Wheeler, Film Writer

On My Block (series) – If Goonies met Boyz in da Hood and had a baby, it’d be the beautifully diverse Netflix coming of age show On My Block. The series follows four city teens winding their way through a Los Angeles high school and their own emerging identities. Their bond is metaphorically the flower that grows out of the concrete in the inner city. Here we have rich characters that defy stereotypes, so much heart, authenticity, sincerity and interconnectedness that transcends the dreariness of their urban and often bleak reality. The best part of the show is the search for a MacGuffin that even Indiana Jones would approve of. – Ryen Thomas, Film Writer

6 Balloons (movie) – This Netflix release is an honest, gut-wrenching movie starring a relapsed Seth (Dave Franco, Easy) and control-freak Katie (Abbi Jacobson, Broad City) as siblings trying to keep their heads above water as they navigate the hurdles and stigma of Seth’s heroin addiction. The candid, impartial lens directs us through a single harrowing evening as the overextended Katie tries to drown out the fraying anxieties and pain of watching someone you love fall into America’s fastest growing public health crisis. The movie is grippingly head-on and, frankly, not easy to stomach – which makes it all the more important to watch and understand the nuanced heartbreak that comes from choosing to walk away while you still have that choice to make.  – Shirley Griffith, Writer

Wormwood (series) – This mind-blowing six-part mini-series from documentary king Errol Morris tells the story of Army scientist and family man Frank Olson who in 1953 fell to his death from a New York hotel window.  Was it suicide, an accident, or murder? The answer involves shady CIA dealings, a governmental cover-up, war crimes, and top-secret LSD experiments. It all unfolds in the form of interviews and archived media coupled with trippy, dramatic reenactments starring Peter Sarsgaard and Molly Parker.  Wormwood is a murder mystery, a paranoid conspiracy thriller, and a true crime documentary all twisted into one. In the case of Olson’s son Eric, with whom most of the interviews are conducted, it’s also a heartbreaking tale of a genius who got sucked so far down the rabbit hole that his obsession with finding the truth consumed his entire life. – Jonathan Shuping, Film Writer

Rapture (documentary Series) – Rapture is a refreshingly candid look at a diverse selection of current emcees and producers in hip-hop culture. It’s a glimpse into the lives and stories of the likes of Nas, Logic, Rapsody, Just Blaze, Dave East, A Boogie, 2 Chainz, and more. It’s real, rugged, and humanizes the same artists that many may glorify. Like the golden era documentaries Rhyme & Reason, The Show, and Backstage, Rapture captures the essence of hip-hop and how it has affected our lives and influenced a generation of people as it evolves. North Carolina’s Rapsody shines with authentic energy and light in her episode with appearances from Kooley High, 9th Wonder, among others. The Nas/Dave East and mega producer Just Blaze’s episodes are also a must-watch affair.

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