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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction

Notable Tarantino classics from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Reservoir Dogs
Reservoir Dogs

Reservoir Dogs (1992)

Directed by Quentin Tarantino

Cast: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Steve Buscemi, Chris Penn, Lawrence Tierney, Edward Bunker, Quentin Tarantino, Randy Brooks, Kirk Baltz

Quentin Tarantino's directorial debut is a one-of-a-kind violent, profane, macho epic. When a discreetly-planned robbery gets botched, newcomer Mr. White (Harvey Keitel), professional Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi), stern Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen), dying Mr. Orange (Tim Roth), and vice-mastermind Nice Guy Eddie (Chris Penn) agree that there is a mole in the group, and start a bloody guessing game to unveil who it might be. Reservoir Dogs, in all its filthy glory, is cleverly and humorously written. The cast, despite being a sausage-fest of an ensemble, delivers tough, believable, solid performances. The story, despite being slightly complicated, is unique, smart and innovative. And Tarantino, despite being renowned for having a fetish for brutality, brings a plentitude of class and thrill to the filmfrom the stylistic opening to the jaw-dropping ending. An almostif not completelyperfect masterpiece. HD Available.

Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Heartbreaker, Welcome

Notable romantic French titles from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Heartbreaker
Heartbreaker

Heartbreaker (2010)

Directed by Pascal Chaumeil

Cast: Romain Duris, Vanessa Paradis, Julie Ferrier, Fran├žois Damiens, Helena Noguerra, Andrew Lincoln, Jacques Frantz, Amandine Dewasmes

Romain Duris (The Beat That My Heart Skipped) and Vanessa Paradis (The Girl on the Bridge) star in director Pascal Chaumeil's feature directorial debut. Alex (Duris), an indebted con artist who breaks couples up for a living, is hired by a rich entrepreneur to prevent his daughter Juliette (Paradis) from marrying her fiance. The expert heartbreaker then struggles through the hardest challenge of his career, as he slowly realizes that he has already fallen in love with his subject. Not just your regular chick-flick, Heartbreaker features an original story and compelling performances from the leads. Duris' gentlemanly mojo perfectly complements Paradis' independent spirit. The scenes are also cleverly written and shot, with stylish lines and catchy sequencing. But most exceptionally, Heartbreaker isn't showered with generous amounts of cliché and cheesiness. That's like lifetime achievement for a rom-com. In French with English subtitles. HD Available.

Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Eat Drink Man Woman, The Road Home

Notable romantic Chinese titles from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Eat Drink Man Woman
Eat Drink Man Woman

Eat Drink Man Woman (1994)

Directed by Ang Lee

Cast: Sihung Lung, Yu-Wen Wang, Jacqueline Wu Chien-Lien, Kuei-Mei Yang, Sylvia Chang, Winston Chao, Chao-jung Chen, Lester Chit-Man Chan, Yu Chen

Long before Brokeback Mountain, Chinese director Ang Lee was making films that explore traditional society's norms and depict how people break away from them. In Eat Drink Man Woman, Lee tells the story of a Taiwanese master chef and his three daughters, and how they transcend conventional Chinese thinking through their unusual love life’s. Using food as a metaphor, the movie excels in delivering a deeply philosophical message in a fairly simple manner. The script, with all its subtle humor and wit, develops the film's homey feel. The plot, although not the most elaborate element in the film, is unpredictable. The actors' standout performances catch the audience off-guard and can break the toughest of hearts. And the cameos of food, schools and streets give us a glimpse of the colorful Chinese culture. Overall, a film that would fill empty your stomach but fill your heart, and leave you feeling so damn good.

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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Lovely, Still and Bonneville

Acting-powerhouse sentimental dramas from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Burstyn and Landau see eye-to-eye
Burstyn and Landau see eye-to-eye

Lovely, Still (2008)

Directed by Nicholas Fackler

Cast: Martin Landau, Ellen Burstyn, Adam Scott, Elizabeth Banks, Mark Booker, Candice Rose, Har Mar Superstar

Lovely, Still follows the life of eighty-something grocery store employee Robert (Martin Landau) as he strives to get through another Christmas by himself. Luckily, he meets Mary (Ellen Burstyn), a white-haired woman of the same age, and as they embark on a bumpy relationship, Robert learnsor rather, rememberssecrets about his past.

The film has a genuinely touching vibe, and Landau and Burstyn produce performances that are both tear-jerking an believable. The script has a few moments of awkward misdirection, but the simplistic dialogue also adds a nice sentimental touch and transcends the thin line between drama and reality on which the film sits. Not to mention the must-see ending. Overall, a one-of-a-kind cinematic treat.

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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Big, Stripes

Notable 1980s comedy titles from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Big (1988)

Directed by Penny Marshall

Cast: Tom Hanks, Elizabeth Perkins, Robert Loggia, John Heard, Jon Lovitz, Mercedes Ruehl, Jared Rushton, David Moscow, Josh Clark, Kimberlee M. Davis, Oliver Block

A less flabby Tom Hanks stars in this lighthearted comedy about Josh Baskin, an unappreciative teenager turned into a 30-year-old man by a devilish Zoltar machine in a carnival one night, and the misadventures that befall him in his newfound maturity. With no one believing his transformation and with nowhere else to go, Josh seeks help from his best friend Billy (Jared Rushton) to find the machine again and reclaim his body. Yet, it's not going to be easy. In his journey, Josh has to learn how to live alone, to find a job, to act like an adult and to fall in love. Overall, Big is a pure and sincere tale with a heartwarming feel, hilarious antics and, hard as it can be found in modern-day flicks, moral lessons. And as always, Hanks does a marvelous job of portraying his bizarre role, making this film a must-see for audiences, young and old alike.

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Couch Potato

I Like to Watch (Instantly): Heavenly Creatures, Dead Alive

Notable Peter Jackson titles from the Netflix Watch Instantly world

Heavenly Creatures
Heavenly Creatures

Heavenly Creatures (1994)

Directed by Peter Jackson

Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Kate Winslet, Sarah Peirse, Diana Kent, Clive Merrison, Simon O'Connor, Jed Brophy, Peter Elliott, Gilbert Goldie, Geoffrey Heath, Kirsti Ferry, Ben Skjellerup, Darien Takle, Elizabeth Moody, Liz Mullane, Moreen Eason, P

Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson directs this bold tale about two girls' obsessive friendship. When introvert schoolgirl Pauline (Melanie Lynskey) meets the beautiful and self-confident Juliet (Kate Winslet, in her big-screen debut), the two form a deep emotional relationship so deep, their parents plot a plan to separate them. Juliet's father will send her to South Africa "for the good of her health," and Pauline's folks won't let her come. Pauline needs to counteract, and soon, she knows just what to do: kill her mother. Set in the 1950s, the film exudes a creepy yet classy feel that makes the story seem so unbelievably real. The homosexual implications add a gripping touch, and may have possibly gotten it nominated for an Oscar in 1995.

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Today's Events

Josh Blue at The Stage @ Santa Ana Star

Josh Blue likes to defy expectations.

A night of stand-up comedy from the "Last Comic Standing" champion.

Gizmo Garage at North Valley Public Library

Summer Nights Concert: Boris McCutcheon • Americana at ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden

More Recommented Events ››
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    High Mountain Hideout
    High Mountain Hideout8.30.2014