most popular original movies

Netflix has been notoriously stingy when it comes to releasing viewership data, but for the first time, the streaming service has revealed a list of its 10 most popular original movies. The Chris Hemsworth-led action movie Extraction still reigns supreme, but find out where the Sandra Bullock thriller Bird Box, the David Spade comedy The Wrong Missy (yep, that’s on there), and more rank on the full list below. Read More »

best foreign movies and tv streaming

(Welcome to Pop Culture Imports, a column that compiles the best foreign movies and TV streaming right now.)

As this quarantine wears on, I know you’re all bored enough that you will give a foreign film a try. And with studios releasing some of their biggest theatrical and festival hits on digital platforms early, now is never a better time. Neon’s romance for the ages, Portrait of a Lady on Fire, hit Hulu early last week, while Netflix has some word-of-mouth hits on its hands with the electric K-drama Itaewon Class and the Spanish dystopian thriller The Platform. Those films and more are in this week’s Pop Culture Imports.

Let’s fire up those subtitles and get streaming.

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The Platform Trailer

There are countless science fiction films that serve as provocative allegories about society at large, ranging from Fritz Lang’s classic Metropolis all the way back in 1927 to Neill Blomkamp’s District 9 from 2009 and plenty more in between and beyond. Netflix is bringing us another one from Spain by way of director Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia.

The Platform takes place in a vertical prison where inmates are assigned to a level and forced to ration food from a platform that moves between the floors. The top floors get exquisite feasts while the lower levels get less and less as the meal platform comes down to them. Sure, it’s a bit on the nose, but if you watch The Platform trailer, you’ll see that this looks outstanding. Read More »

The Best Prison-Set Movies You’ve Never Seen

(Welcome to The Best Movies You’ve Never Seen, a series that takes a look at slightly more obscure, under-the-radar, or simply under-appreciated movies. This week we go behind bars for a look at great films that take place in jails, prisons, and other places of involuntary incarceration.)

Most of us will never spend time behind bars, incarcerated for a crime we did or didn’t commit, and that lack of first-hand experience might be part of what makes movies about prison life so popular. They come in all forms and genres from Stephen King-penned (The Shawshank Redemption, 1994) to horror (Prison, 1987) to comedy (The Longest Yard, 1974) to exploitation (The Big Bird Cage, 1972) to action (Boyka: Undisputed, 2016) to the effortlessly engaging and entertaining (Cool Hand Luke, 1967), but not all of them get the attention they deserve.

So consider this a down and dirty primer on some less popular prison movies that are all well worth your time despite their absence from the general conversation.

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The Platform Review

“Hunger unleashes the madman in us. It’s better to eat than be eaten.”

Goreng (Iván Massagué) has volunteered to enter The Pit for six months in order to earn his associate’s degree, have some quiet time to finally read Don Quixote and kick his smoking habit. But what The Administration hasn’t told him is that The Pit is a vertically stacked prison leaving its inmates to starve or cannibalize each other, in Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia’s sci-fi dystopian horror The Platform.

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