The quarantines and enterprise shutdowns as a result of COVID-19 pandemic have had a number of main results on international locations world wide, however one of many many corresponding minor results is the best way it’s even additional splintered the leisure panorama. With main new theatrical releases on maintain, some viewers are in search of new streaming releases to observe collectively, and a few creators have been throwing on-line viewing events as social retailers. But if social media is any indication, an terrible lot of persons are simply enjoying catchup, delving deep into the streaming libraries of companies they have already got.
That explains the eclectic nature of this week’s “what we watched this weekend” installment, which delves into Netflix, Criterion, and on-line video leases, and is in all places when it comes to period and tone. This week additionally highlights the viewing undertaking that led one Polygon author to observe David Fincher’s Panic Room for the primary time — a focused effort to work by way of a single director’s whole output. Lots of people appear to be taking this time away from theaters, bars, eating places, and different social pastimes to create private initiatives for themselves, and a David Fincher undertaking is actually a worthwhile one.
Panic Room wasn’t the one factor these of us at Polygon watched this weekend. Below, we’ve collected our different favourite choices, so to watch them alongside us. Be positive to tell us within the feedback what you loved over the weekend, too.
File Kathryn Bigelow’s third function (after The Loveless and Near Dark) underneath the cinematic class of “fascinating mess.” The police drama stars Jamie Lee Curtis as Megan Turner, an NYPD patrol officer who weapons down a convenience-store robber on her third day on the job. Viewed in America’s present local weather, the incident is a surprising show of police brutality, however Bigelow isn’t investigating that problem, or working in that local weather. After a slap on the wrist, Megan’s drawback is that she’s a lady working in a world with zero respect for a feminine cop.
When a sadistic stock-broker weirdo (Ron Silver) makes off from the scene of the crime with the robber’s gun, Megan comes underneath fireplace from male superiors who don’t belief her. When the sadistic stock-broker weirdo goes on a homicide streak with the lacking weapon, Megan turns into a suspect, not a key investigator. When she unintentionally begins relationship the sadistic stock-broker weirdo, then discovers the reality behind his serial-killer methods, her fellow cops defend the person — in any case, why would a finance bro kill random individuals?
The reply, in an sudden twist, is near lycanthropy. The second half of the movie pivots to a slasher vibe, and Silver, who at one level bathes in a sufferer’s blood, goes full were-bro. Bigelow’s film begins like a sketch of her later movie Zero Dark Thirty, spirals right into a style train like her earlier movie Near Dark, and within the present political context, finally ends up being completely weird. —Matt Patches
Blue Steel is streaming without spending a dime on Tubi TV.
The Emperor’s New Groove
I had a thousand issues I ought to have watched this weekend, for upcoming work initiatives or simply to reap the benefits of the ton of films streaming free proper now from corporations leaping on the Black Lives Matter wave. So what did I do as an alternative? Inspired by Petrana’s eye-opening column on the weird historical past of Disney’s comedy The Emperor’s New Groove, I re-watched that as an alternative. It was a kind of “I can’t quite remember how that movie started, but it’s streaming, I’ll just watch the opening” poor-impulse-control choices, that so usually finish with, “Oh, guess I watched the whole thing.” But I’ve no regrets.
I bear in mind actually disliking this film when it first got here out — I used to be at all times hoping for extra severe grownup animation again then, and this movie simply appeared trivial and foolish. Turns out it is trivial and foolish, and there’s nothing unsuitable with that. The comedian timing in Emperor’s New Groove is aces, the surreal comedy is sudden, and all strikes alongside at an unbeatably reckless, wild tempo. Fun stuff for mild weekend enjoyment. —Tasha Robinson
The Emperor’s New Groove is streaming on Disney Plus and rentable on companies like Amazon.
Invention for Destruction
My favourite online game of 2018 was Return of the Obra Dinn, a time-bending journey set in 1807 on a ship of the East India Company. Creator Lucas Pope designed a visible filter that enables the sport to appear like the 1-bit, static graphics of early Macintosh computer systems, however now set in movement. This weekend, I found a movie on the Criterion Channel that accomplishes one thing equally marvelous, to nice impact: Invention for Destruction, Karel Zeman’s very free adaptation of the works of Jules Verne.
This 1958 movie mixes live-action actors with animated units to provide a movie that appears like a residing Victorian line engraving. Like Guy Maddin’s work, it captures an earlier period whereas additionally being distinctly fashionable. It’s a disorienting expertise made all the higher by the practically dozen particular options out there on the service, explaining how and why this movie was made. When I first noticed Return of the Obra Dinn, I couldn’t think about a precedent, however positive sufficient, 60 years earlier, an artist was experimenting with among the similar concepts, discovering one thing new throughout the previous. —Chris Plante
Invention for Destruction is streaming on Criterion Channel.
My husband and I’ve picked up a brand new quarantine exercise — making our approach by way of a director’s filmography in chronological order. We began with David Fincher, since he’s a giant blind spot for me. So far this experiment has taught me three issues: 1) Fight Club is a reasonably good film that faculty boys ruined by pondering it’s deep, 2) Brad Pitt is considered one of our weirdest actors, which we neglect as a result of he’s so fairly, and 3) Panic Room completely guidelines.
It’s actually a disgrace that it’s taken me 18 years to observe Panic Room, because it’s basically Home Alone (my favourite film) for grown-ups. (Forest Whitaker even references Joe Pesci’s iconic function as one of many bandits.) Jodie Foster and a tweenaged Kristen Stewart star as a mom and daughter who should cope with armed robbers of their New York City brownstone on their first evening residing there. They retreat to the house’s built-in panic room, and a lethal sport of cat-and-mouse ensues. Not solely does this present loads of alternatives for the characters to say the title of the film — at all times a delight — it additionally places a enjoyable twist on the home-invasion thriller, particularly because it turns into clear that the robbers (Whitaker, Jared Leto, and Dwight Yoakam) know all about the home’s quirks.
This type of mid-budget, date-movie thriller noticed a growth from the late ’90s to early 2000s (see additionally: Memento, Kiss the Girls, Fincher’s personal The Game), nevertheless it isn’t seen as usually lately, which is a disgrace, as a result of this sort of film is a number of enjoyable when carried out properly. We’re on to Zodiac subsequent, and whereas I’m trying ahead to Mark Ruffalo and Jake Gyllenhaal in ’70s costumes, I don’t assume they’ll prime Panic Room. —Emily Heller
There’s by no means a nasty time to observe Clueless, as a result of it’s an ideal film. But after I watched it this weekend, I spotted that if Paul Rudd’s character had no dialogue in any respect, his smile would nonetheless be sufficient to nonetheless make the film work. Seriously, look how charming it’s:
Anyway, if you wish to really feel higher about life basically, watch Clueless. —Austen Goslin
Clueless is streaming on Netflix.