What To Watch: Suggestions For The Current Way of Life.

Image courtesy of @thibaultpenin via unsplash.com

If you’re like me, cabin fever has begun to set in and you’re looking for an escape. If you’re outside the city, or even if you’re not, a walk in a local park is a solid pursuit – provided you can still maintain those social distancing recommendations – but you can’t only go for walks. So what to do?

PARTNER CONTENT

By now, I’m sure your Netflix account is on a steady rotation… but if you’ve been busying yourself with other things and are looking for some new streaming options, I thought I’d recommend a couple. Let’s dive in!

If you have a Netflix account, you may have already heard of Tiger King. It’s an absolutely bug nuts insane documentary series about several “big cat” caretakers in Florida.

Image courtesy of Netflix

I could tell you what it’s about but that would spoil the fun. Suffice to say that there is a murder-for-hire scheme, a woman who may or may not have fed a previous husband to her tigers, a man who is essentially living a polygamous lifestyle with all of his female employees, and if that weren’t enough, the nicest, most well spoken character on the show who seems the most… “normal,” is the guy who literally inspired Al Pacino’s SCARFACE.

The funniest description I’ve seen for the show? See the image below.

Image courtesy of Twitter.

If that doesn’t make you need to watch the show, I don’t know what would.

My recommendation: WATCH IT!

Next!

Image courtesy of Netflix

SPENSER CONFIDENTIAL. Spenser is, oddly, a big screen take on the old Spenser for Hire tv series (if you’re younger than your 40s, ask your parents about it) though it appeared to be so in name only. Mark Wahlberg stars as an ex-cop better known for making trouble than solving it. When we first meet him, he’s just got gotten out of prison and is planning to leave Boston for good. But he soon gets pulled into helping his old boxing coach and mentor, Henry (Alan Arkin), with a promising amateur named Hawk (Winston Duke of BLACK PANTHER). When two of Spenser’s former colleagues turn up murdered, he recruits Hawk and his foul-mouthed ex-girlfriend, Cissy (Iliza Shlesinger, the best thing about this movie), to help him investigate and bring the culprits to justice. SPENSER CONFIDENTIAL is from director Peter Berg, returning to work with Wahlberg here for the third or fourth time… and I could’ve looked that up, but honestly? I didn’t want to spend anymore time thinking about this movie. I was about an hour and a half into this movie and thought it had been going on for four hours.

My recommendation: SKIP IT!

Side note: If you’ve never seen LONE SURVIVOR, one of Wahlberg and Berg’s previous collaborations, do yourself a favor and seek it out. It’s an extraordinary true story of heroism and so, so well done that it makes me wonder how SPENSER even exists.

Now let’s look at Ozark Season 3.

The Byrde Family from Netflix series Ozark.
Image courtesy of Netflix

If you haven’t watched Ozark, man, you are seriously missing out. A contender for the post-Breaking Bad title of best series about decent people descending into very bad deeds, this series had a solid start, a killer second season, and has just returned this week for third round. It stars Emmy Award® Winner Jason Bateman, Emmy Award® Winner Laura Linney, Emmy Award® Winner Julia Garner, and Emmy Award® nominee Janet McTeer.

I’m two episodes in and this binge will consume me for the next several nights with ease. The acting is just top notch and the suspense is nail-bitingly good.

Here’s a rundown of Season 3 for those who are caught up: It’s six months after the ending of Season 2. The casino is up and running, but Marty and Wendy are fighting for control of the family’s destiny with Marty preaching keeping the status quo and Wendy making some bold moves of here own. Aided by an alliance with Helen and drug cartel leader Omar Navarro, Wendy plots for expansion. But when Wendy’s brother Ben comes into town, everyone’s lives are thrown into chaos.

We meet Wendy’s brother in the second episode and, I don’t know where this actor came from but he’s another stellar addition to an already excellent cast. 

My Recommendation: WATCH IT!

Those first couple of recs are… for after the kiddies go to sleep. If you’re looking for something to watch with the family, you could try:

THE LETTER FOR THE KING

Image courtesy of Netflix

Here’s the rundown: When a ruthless prince threatens to cast the world into darkness, a young knight in training named Tiuri (Amir Wilson) embarks on an epic quest to deliver a secret letter to the king. 

Along the way, he unexpectedly finds himself at the center of a magical prophecy foretelling the rise of a hero who can defeat the prince and restore peace. If he’s going to survive the journey, Tiuri will have to learn what it means to be a true knight — and a true leader. 

The story, told as a six episode series, is based on the best-selling novel of the same name and also stars Ruby Serkis (yep, her dad is Andy), Thaddea Graham and Gijs Blom. It was written by Will Davies (HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON) who also serves as executive producer. As a bonus, it was shot right here in the Czech Republic.

This one I can’t recommend, but only because I haven’t yet watched it. If you have, sound off in the comments below.

Looking for something more… hip? If you haven’t yet signed up for Disney+ (you can use a DNS to access it here in Czech) you should. It’s the only way to watch…

The Mandalorian

Image courtesy of Disney

The Mandalorian follows a bounty hunter trying to protect… “The Child.” If that makes no sense to you, you haven’t been keeping up with social media. The Child has been dubbed “Baby Yoda,” and is the star of a thousand memes and gifs.

“The Child” from Disney’s The Mandalorian
Image courtesy of Disney+

The show is a sort of Western set run the expanded STAR WARS universe and it’s a lot of fun. 

My Recommendation: WATCH IT!

Finally, thanks to theaters being closed globally, this Friday, April 3rd, you’ll actually be able to watch Pixar’s latest film ONWARD featuring the voices of Chris Pratt and Tom Holland.

I’ve yet to see it and, truth to tell, it doesn’t have the best reviews for a Pixar film but let’s face it… even middling Pixar is better than a lot of other stuff on the market.

My recommendation: WATCH IT!

So those are the recs. Hopefully that gets you a few new things to pass the time. If you check any of them out, share your review. Or if you have your own recommendations, be sure to let us know! We’ll be looking for our next binge soon.

Shaun O'Banion

Shaun O'Banion

Shaun O'Banion is a Gotham Award-winning independent film producer, writer, and teacher who has been living and working in Prague since 2015.
Shaun O'Banion
About Shaun O'Banion 57 Articles
Shaun O'Banion is a Gotham Award-winning independent film producer, writer, and teacher who has been living and working in Prague since 2015.