People often complain about the selection of movies on Netflix- we pick out some undiscovered gems.
Most films on the lower rungs of Netflix occupy that position for a single reason: they’re downright terrible. The acting is at best laughable and at worst cringe-worthy, whilst the script seems to be the product of baboons who possess a slightly above average intelligence. Elsewhere, the special effects are seemingly artefacts from design software that became obsolete once Windows 98 was released and the goofs and continuity errors come thick and fast. But amongst the schlock, the horribly ill-conceived box office flops and throwaway Chuck Norris vehicles are a selection of films hardly deserving of their placement amongst the vast expanse of Hollywood detritus. We’ve all sifted through the lower echelons of the vast Netflix database, ambivalently scrolling past Beverly Hills Ninja and Death Wish 4 and laughing at the hilarity of shoe-string budget horror C-movies such as Return Of The Killer Tomatoes and Strippers Vs Werewolves. Hiding amongst the most forgettable and artistically hollow filmic endeavours are some criminally overlooked works of cinematic art. Here is a selection of filmic diamonds who have unfairly found themselves confined to the Netflix motion picture ghetto:
Rebellion (2011), Director: Matheiu Kossovitz
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There's a lovely simplicity to this quietly unnerving story about two brothers who have never had a break in life. And while it is relentlessly grim, it's also elegantly well-made, held together by another revelatory performance from Emile Hirsch as a talented guy whose path has been dictated to him by forces outside his control.
The title refers to the way two brothers have lived since their mother died: in a sleazy motel just off the strip in Reno. Frank (Hirsch) has had to be the responsible one, moving from job to job to support his chaotic, disabled older brother Jerry Lee (Stephen Dorff). And now that Jerry Lee has been involved in a fatal hit-and-run accident, Frank is trying to find a way to get out of town. He turns to his old car-dealer mentor (Kris Kristofferson) for advice and considers getting in touch with his ex Annie (Dakota Fanning), even though their relationship ended very badly. But first he hits the casinos to raise some cash with his pals (Joshua Leonard and Noah Harpster).
Sibling filmmakers Alan and Gabe Polsky give the movie a darkly introspective tone, taking us into Frank's thoughts through evocative flashbacks to the brothers' struggles as teens (played by Andrew Lee and Garrett Backstrom). And as Frank tells Jerry Lee stories to help him cope with life, these tales fill the screen in gorgeous sketch-style animation that matches Jerry Lee's artistic skills. All of this gives the film a quietly moving tone that finds spiky humour and emotional resonance when we least expect it.
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