The quarantines and enterprise shutdowns as a result of COVID-19 pandemic have had quite a lot of main results on nations all over the world, 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 look at collectively, and a few creators have been throwing on-line viewing events as social retailers. But when 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 all over by way of period and tone. This week additionally highlights the viewing mission that led one Polygon author to look at David Fincher’s Panic Room for the primary time — a focused effort to work via a single director’s complete output. Lots of people appear to be taking this time away from theaters, bars, eating places, and different social pastimes to create private tasks for themselves, and a David Fincher mission is actually a worthwhile one.
Panic Room wasn’t the one factor these of us at Polygon watched this weekend. Beneath, we’ve collected our different favourite picks, so that you could watch them alongside us. You’ll want to tell us within the feedback what you loved over the weekend, too.
File Kathryn Bigelow’s third function (after The Loveless and Close to Darkish) beneath 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. Considered in America’s present local weather, the incident is a stunning show of police brutality, however Bigelow isn’t investigating that difficulty, or working in that local weather. After a slap on the wrist, Megan’s downside is that she’s a girl 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 beneath hearth 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 by accident begins courting 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 folks?
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 Darkish Thirty, spirals right into a style train like her earlier movie Close to Darkish, and within the present political context, finally ends up being completely weird. —Matt Patches
Blue Metal 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 tasks or simply to make the most of the ton of films streaming free proper now from firms leaping on the Black Lives Matter wave. So what did I do as a substitute? Impressed 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 a substitute. It was a type of “I can’t fairly bear in mind how that film began, however it’s streaming, I’ll simply watch the opening” poor-impulse-control choices, that so typically finish with, “Oh, guess I watched the entire thing.” However I’ve no regrets.
I bear in mind actually disliking this film when it first got here out — I used to be all the time hoping for extra severe grownup animation again then, and this movie simply appeared trivial and foolish. Seems it is trivial and foolish, and there’s nothing mistaken 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. Enjoyable stuff for gentle weekend enjoyment. —Tasha Robinson
The Emperor’s New Groove is streaming on Disney Plus and rentable on companies like Amazon.
Invention for Destruction
My favorite video game of 2018 was Return of the Obra Dinn, a time-bending journey set in 1807 on a ship of the East India Firm. Creator Lucas Pope designed a visible filter that permits the sport to seem 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 unfastened adaptation of the works of Jules Verne.
This 1958 movie mixes live-action actors with animated units to supply a movie that appears like a residing Victorian line engraving. Like Man 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 accessible on the service, explaining how and why this movie was made. After I first noticed Return of the Obra Dinn, I couldn’t think about a precedent, however certain sufficient, 60 years earlier, an artist was experimenting with a number of the similar concepts, discovering one thing new inside the outdated. —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 via a director’s filmography in chronological order. We began with David Fincher, since he’s an enormous blind spot for me. Up to now this experiment has taught me three issues: 1) Combat Membership is a fairly good film that school boys ruined by pondering it’s deep, 2) Brad Pitt is certainly one of our weirdest actors, which we overlook as a result of he’s so fairly, and three) Panic Room completely guidelines.
It’s actually a disgrace that it’s taken me 18 years to look at Panic Room, because it’s basically Dwelling 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 need to cope with armed robbers of their New York Metropolis 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 identify of the film — all the time 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 Women, Fincher’s personal The Sport), however it isn’t seen as typically today, which is a disgrace, as a result of this type of film is quite a lot of enjoyable when performed nicely. We’re on to Zodiac subsequent, and whereas I’m trying ahead to Mark Ruffalo and Jake Gyllenhaal in ’70s costumes, I don’t suppose they’ll prime Panic Room. —Emily Heller
There’s by no means a nasty time to look at Clueless, as a result of it’s an ideal film. However after I watched it this weekend, I noticed that if Paul Rudd’s character had no dialogue in any respect, his smile would nonetheless be sufficient to nonetheless make the film work. Significantly, look how charming it’s:
Anyway, if you wish to really feel higher about life generally, watch Clueless. —Austen Goslin
Clueless is streaming on Netflix.