FEATURE – If you must make a New Year’s resolution, why not make one you’ll actually keep?
A slew of new instant-watch entertainment offerings will debut on Netflix and Amazon Prime throughout January to kick off 2015. Savvy film fanatics should resolve to seize this opportunity and become immersed in the true American pastime: vegging out. It mattereth not whether you stream on a desktop, laptop, gaming system or other device; just channel your inner couch potato and schedule some quality time with popcorn, loved ones and some on-demand entertainment.
Among the new additions to Netflix and Amazon, this humble reporter suggests the following must-sees in no particular order:
“It Happened One Night” | 1934 | Amazon Prime: Starring screen legends Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert, this 1934 gem should be on the list of every self-proclaimed movie buff. Some say Gable’s portrayal as diamond-in-the-rough reporter Peter Warne was the inspiration for that wacky animated icon Bugs Bunny, whom film fans met six years after this film was released. (Watch Gable’s carrot-eating scene in the film and you’ll see what I mean.) Yes, this movie is in black-and-white – and if you can’t hack that, you ain’t no true movie lover!
“Breakfast at Tiffany’s” | 1961 | Amazon Prime: Based on a novella by Truman Capote (the movie is much better than the book – trust me on that), “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” became a classic among classics. What would the world be without that enchantingly dysfunctional leading lady Holly Golightly – brought to dazzling life by Audrey Hepburn, one of the most graceful ladies to ever light up the silver screen? If you haven’t seen this movie, you should be thoroughly ashamed – but 2015 is the time to redeem yourself.
“Friends” complete series | 1994-2004 | Netflix: This is probably the most exciting addition Netflix has announced for this month. Could you easily waste an entire day watching “Friends” reruns? So could I!
“Mean Girls” | 2004 | Netflix: If you’re into teen comedies (which I am – as long as they’re actually funny and not merely stupid), “Mean Girls” is just a great guilty pleasure. It stars a pre-drugs, pre-rehab, pre-tabloid Lindsay Lohan; “Saturday Night Live” alums Tina Fey and Amy Poehler; Rachel McAdams when she was just a wee thing; and Amanda Seyfried in her very first movie role. It’s just fun cotton candy for the brain.
“The Quiet Man” | 1952 | Netflix: In a rare non-Western role, John Wayne plays a shy prizefighter who runs from his past to the land of his heritage: Ireland. A vibrant Maureen O’Hara – full Technicolor with her flaming red hair streaming in the wind and emerald Ireland in the background – is the feisty Irish spinster who catches his eye. While, strictly speaking, this movie is a drama, some of the funniest, most delightful moments in film history can be found here – including one climactic scene in which, while a lively Irish tune rollicks in the background, John Wayne and his Irish brother-in-law beat each other to a pulp across several square miles while their countrified neighbors – including a couple of priests – follow along in sheer delight, cheering for their favorite “contender” and placing bets on who will give in first.
A bit of trivia: In “E.T. the Extra Terrestrial,” this is the movie E.T. is watching while Elliot, off at school, boldly liberates a biology lab full of frogs and then grabs a girl and kisses her good – while, back at home, John Wayne is grabbing and kissing Maureen O’Hara on the TV screen.
Here is the full list of shows scheduled to hit Netflix and Amazon this month:
- “101 Dalmatians”
- “Bad Boys II”
- “Batman & Robin”
- “Bruce Almighty”
- “Cast Away”
- “Get Low”
- “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas”
- “Fort Bliss”
- “Jeepers Creepers 2”
- “Mean Girls”
- “Shall We Dance?”
- “To Be Takei”
- “The French Connection”
- “The Quiet Man”
- “The War of the Worlds”
- “Wayne’s World 2”
- “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit”
- “Brick Mansions”
- “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”
- “Iliza Shlesinger: Freezing Hot”
- TV shows
- “Dallas” season 3
- “Friends” complete series
- “White Collar” season 5
- “Psych” season 8
- “Z Nation” season 1
- “Being Human” season 4
- “Wolfblood” season 3
- “The Adventures of Puss in Boots” season 1
- “The Fall” season 2
- “Beauty and the Beast” season 2
- “The Amityville Horror”
- “Amityville II: The Possession”
- “Barbershop 2: Back in Business”
- “Beverly Hills Cop II”
- “Beverly Hills Cop III”
- “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”
- “Footloose” – Seriously, Southern Utah, if you haven’t seen this it is now, by some accounts, the “must-see” of the year.
- “It Happened One Night”
- “Mr. Mom”
- “On the Waterfront”
- “Shall We Dance?”
- “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit”
- “Starred Up”
- “The Congress”
- “Big Fish”
- “Bottle Rocket”
- “The Winning Season”
- “Justified” season 5
- “Hit By Lightning”
- “Patton Oswalt: Comedy Plus Tragedy Equals Time”
- Sundance announces films in US, world competitions; 2015 Sundance Film Festival
- Edgar Allan Poe inspires independent film production
- Pineview Stadium 10 hosts premiere of ‘Saints and Soldiers: The Void’
- Where stars, fans meet: Western Legends Roundup continues in Kanab; STGnews Photo Gallery
- What the HAYnes? That guy who fell asleep at the movies, he’s a real hero
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