Most of the movies and TV series I watch come from my Netflix Instant Queue. It has been my go to for over five years now. I like to use it to find hidden gems, but not everyone wants to commit two hours of their free time to a decent looking movie poster. I’ve watched a ton of garbage over the years, but have missed even more, so there’s always something I want to watch, whether it’s revisiting an old favorite, or finally catching something I missed over the years. Instant Cinefessions will list some weekly recommendations based on what’s new on the Netflix service. It will also include my “Pull List”, which are films I’m interested in watching in the coming weeks. Look for reviews of the movies in my pull list in future columns. Also featured are brief reviews of films I’ve watched off the Pull List.


It’s been a rough few months for me with my wife having emergency surgery, me helping her recover, and lots of follow-up doctor visits, but I’m ready to get back into things with her having a clean bill of health. I figured I’d start with what I missed in July this week, recap all of August in one giant post next week, and then we’ll get back to a more weekly schedule for Instant Cinefessions.

Netflix BigNew Films added to Netflix from 07/15 through 07/31
24 Days (2014)
52 Tuesdays (2014)
A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
Almost Mercy (2015)
An Act of War (2015)
An Amish Murder (2013)
Analyze That (2002)
Analyze This (1999)
Cantinflas (2014)
Changeling (2008)
Christie’s Revenge (2007)
Come Drink with Me (1966)
Comet (2014)
Complicit (2013)
Da Sweet Blood of Jesus (2014)
Dial a Prayer (2015)
Eugene Mirman: Vegan on His Way to the Complain Store (2015)
From the Dark (2014)
Hercules (2014)
Imaginary Friend (2012)
Interview with the Vampire (1994)
Java Heat (2013)
Jim Norton: Contextually Inadequate (2015)
Kangaroo Jack (2003)
La Ciudad (1998)
Martial Arts of Shaolin (1986)
Of Girls and Horses (2014)
Out of the Dark (1995)
Pastor Brown (2009)
Peace After Marriage (2013)
Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1987)
Penguins of Madagascar: The Movie (2014)
Perfect Stranger (2007)
Plague (2014)
Set Fire to the Stars (2014)
Shaolin Martial Arts (1974)
Staten Island Summer (2015)
Still (2014)
Strange Voices (1987)
Sword of Vengeance (2014)
Teacher of the Year (2014)
The Avenging Eagle (1978)
The Comedian (2012)
The Forgotten Kingdom (2013)
The Guest (2014)
The Keys of the Kingdom (1944)
The Krays (1990)
The Mystic Masseur (2001)
The Physician (2013)
The Skeleton Twins (2014)
The Unwanted (2013)
Todd Barry: The Crowd Work Tour (2014)
Vandal (2013)
Zero Motivation (2014)

Ashe’s Seal of Approval
These are the films or series that are on Netflix that get my seal of approval. In lieu of something not showing up that I’ve seen with recent additions to Netflix, which is a good problem to have if you’re looking for something new, I’ll recommend something that I’ve seen recently or that I know will be on the service for a while.

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984, dir. Wes Craven)
A killer with metal claws on his hands begins hunting teenagers in their dreams, but can you fight something in your dreams while you sleep? Sometimes a good horror film will come along that just sets a high bar. We’d been getting some copycat slasher flicks for a while in the early ‘80s, and while Freddy qualifies as a slasher, his methods are definitely uniquely his own, as well as his look and personality. He’s just as iconic as Michael or Jason, and I have to say I’d still watch this over pretty much any other slasher film out there. Craven hits all the right notes to play on our fears, and Freddy really feels like he could do just about anything without having to show it. While some parts of the soundtrack haven’t aged that well, the theme itself is still just as creepy as it ever was.
three_and_a_half_stars

Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1987, dir. Tim Burton)
The eccentric and childish Pee-wee Herman embarks on a big adventure when his beloved bicycle is stolen. Armed with information from a fortune-teller, and a relentless obsession with his prized possession, Pee-wee encounters a host of odd characters and bizarre situations as he treks across the country to recover his bike. Bizarre, fun, really freaking odd, and yet, still amusing on a bizarre level. When you go to rent this one, just remember that Large Marge sent you.
two_and_a_half_stars

Interview with the Vampire (1994, dir. Neil Jordan)
A vampire relates his epic life story of love, betrayal, loneliness, and dark hunger to an over-curious reporter. Brad Pitt plays the lead character really well, and you can tell Tom Cruise is having a blast as Lestat, but the stand out has always been Kirsten Dunst as the little girl they turn to be their companion. This has some really great shots, a decent conversion from the book, and an amazing score that fits the film so well. I can’t tell you how many times I saw this in theaters. I love it.
four_stars

Hercules (2014, dir. Brett Ratner)
Hercules was the powerful son of the god king Zeus, for this he received nothing but suffering his entire life. Over the years he warmed to the company of six similar souls, their only bond being their love of fighting and presence of death. These men and woman never question where they go to fight or why or whom, just how much they will be paid. Now the King of Thrace has hired these mercenaries to train his men to become the greatest army of all time. It is time for this bunch of lost souls to finally have their eyes opened to how far they have fallen. This isn’t, by any stretch, a great film. Once they establish the characters and move a bit through the plot, you can easily pick apart the events that are going to happen. The interesting thing about this is, instead of being terrible, the actors actually manage to make this not just watchable, but fun. I do like the realistic-yet-unreal take on events, and while a lot of the CGI doesn’t look quite right, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson manages to sell the scenes anyway. This is a popcorn eating, sit on the couch, and turn off kind of film.
two_and_a_half_stars

Ashe’s Pull List
The Pull List is a list of films I’m interested in but haven’t seen that have been added to Netflix since the beginning of the year. These listed below are the films that have been added to the Pull List since last issue. Look for reviews of some of these in future issues of Instant Cinefessions. Don’t be surprised if I don’t end up clearing out this entire list either.  Even I can be picky sometimes.

An Amish Murder (2013)
Analyze That (2002)
Analyze This (1999)
Cantinflas (2014)
Changeling (2008)
Come Drink with Me (1966)
Comet (2014)
Da Sweet Blood of Jesus (2014)
From the Dark (2014)
Imaginary Friend (2012)
Of Girls and Horses (2014)
Perfect Stranger (2007)
Plague (2014)
Sword of Vengeance (2014)
Teacher of the Year (2014)
The Avenging Eagle (1978)
The Forgotten Kingdom (2013)
The Keys of the Kingdom (1944)
The Skeleton Twins (2014)
The Unwanted (2013)
Zero Motivation (2014)

Ashe’s Pull List Picks of the Week
So what did I watch off my Netflix Pull List for this week? I did actually squeeze in a film during TV show binge watches and the Scream podcast for you all.  So what have I got for you this week? A film I had really low expectations for.

The Expendables 3 (2014 , dir. Patrick Hughes)
He helped assemble their team, now this arms dealer wants to destroy them. For the Expendables, this time it’s personal. This feels as “cookie cutter action movie” as you can get, and while I like the characters, even the new team members, it feels like this is just obligatory, and by the numbers. Once they have the big reveal about who the arms dealer really is, I basically called every event in order, as it happened. It’s at least a bit fun, but it’s hardly original, and they push the bounds of the popcorn flick and start heading into the realm of the last few seasons of Dukes of Hazard ridiculous with some of it. This is not nearly as good as the first film, but overall, on par with Expendables 2, which wasn’t spectacular either.
two_and_a_half_stars

Make sure to check back here on the site for more reviews and recommendations from the Netflix Instant Queue in Issue 26 of Instant Cinefessions!


Source: Whats on Netflix and Netflix

Ashe Collins
Film Critic at Cinefessions

Born the same year as Star Wars, it seems Ashe was destined to be into films with big impacts, explosions, and laser swords. With a love for sci-fi and horror, Ashe has a thing for games of both the tabletop and video variety. He is living a charmed, married life of sixteen years, along with several cats, a dog, and a bearded dragon. Ashe currently writes for Diehard Gamefan, covering video and tabletop games since 2008. Starting with Cinefessions just a few years ago, he has decided to tackle one of his original passions: film.