Have You Been Watching Netflix?

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I started watching and streaming Netflix when I was using my elliptical machine.  I would exercise for an hour, and the movies and shows they had kept me entertained for months.  Unfortunately,I quickly went through all the titles I liked and found myself having nothing to watch.  We were still getting DVD’s in the mail and the lack of streaming content wasn’t extremely important since we mainly watched DVDs.  Over time, Netflix increased their DVD price and we opted out of mail program.  We kept the steaming service, it was pretty cheap and the other members of my family watched it.

Slowly Netflix started creating their own content and the shows were fairly good: equal to network programs, and in some cases superior.  Netflix also streamed content from other sources like AMC, BBC, and others.  I found myself searching for new content and programming and I missed not being a premium cable subscriber.  I found a treasure trove of old and new shows, some original, some from other sources. I was intrigued! Here are some of my more interesting finds in no particular order of discovery.

You may know him now as Aquaman, but Jason Momoa’s portrayal of Declan Harp in the Netflix show Frontier is both grittier and more brutal than his superhero alter ego.  Harp is an outlaw trapper at odds with his former friend and employer Lord Benton of the Hudson Bay Company.  The plot is complex and the cast is full of intriguing characters portrayed by quality thespians and perfect sets.  The two season cliffhangers left me wanting more and waiting for the next season anxiously.  After each episode, I’m in shock, not believing how far the character will go for vengeance.  This one you must watch!

The reason I found Frontier was based on the Netflix suggestion algorithm.  It shows you similar shows to the one you are currently or have just finished watching.  I was watching Turn - Washington’s Spies.  I first became interested in this show, originally broadcast on AMC, when I read that it followed the actions of a group of spies working on Long Island, NY.  I have lived on Long Island my whole life and was intrigued by how the story used places I had frequented.  What I found was a story that followed “The Culper Ring” and a young farmer from Setauket from the years 1776 to 1781.  AMC perfectly uses history to weave a story based mostly on fact on how this group of spies eventually helps the Americans win the war against the British.  The clever use of new technology mixed with old fashioned spy craft, gives you an inside look to how simple folk were able to battle the world’s most powerful military.  History comes alive in this amazing series.

The Transporter movie franchise is a favorite of mine, and I was a tad upset when I saw they had made a spin-off series based on the show.  I got over it quickly! This French-Canadian action TV series shows the adventures of Frank Martin.  Chris Vance is the Transporter and he is great, equal to Jason Statham, and the show gives him a chance to act.  This series went two seasons before being cancelled, but I feel it could have easily gone on another season.  The action is first rate, the large budget allowed the show to go big and have movie style action, and they didn’t reuse the same sequences either. The show was produced and edited very well.  This was a great watch and I would recommend this show strongly to any fans of The Transporter.

God Of War is an Asian movie from 2017.  A wise general with a unique way of looking at the world must deal with the politics of the Ming Dynasty to lead his forces to victory against a group of pirates, who are backed by the Japanese, from invading.  The action is intense and the tactics are surprising, keeping the audience guessing to the very end.  This is more than a simple martial arts movie, this is an epic story on the grandest scale.  I also like subtitles since it allows the actors’ voices to tell the story the original way they portrayed the characters.

The 1990 Luc Besson film Nikita was a big hit in both Europe and America.  The show was adapted twice.  The first release on the USA network, Le Femme Nikita, was the highest rated drama on basic cable. It ran for 5 seasons and had a great deal of commercial successes.  I became interested at the relaunch of this show called Nikita and it starred one of my favorite stars, Maggie Q.  I had to watch, then my wife had to watch, and we loved the show.  Through twists and turns, Maggie Q. kicks ass!  The show was too good for TV and I believe many people missed this show.  I challenge you to find a better action show on American Television, and I was extremely happy to binge watch the 6 seasons.  Don’t watch at your own risk!

Faith is a TV show from South Korea that originally aired in 2012.  This show was released to Netflix as the The Great Doctor.  A warrior from the Goryeo empire is transported through time to meet and return to the past with a beautiful doctor.  Love develops between the main characters against the backdrop of the Korean Civil War of 1350.  The action is breath taking, the costumes are really cool, and the military intrigue is complex and surprising.  The plot twists and turns and make no mistakes with time travel and uses the knowledge of a modern doctor as an integral conflict point.  I know, some people hate subtitles, but if you do, you will miss out on a valuable gem like The Great Doctor.

I’m sure my wife will have another dozen suggestions for programs I should share, but this is a good start. And I’ll plan on doing another list of suggested Netflix shows.  I thank Netflix for their wide variety of foreign TV and films. It takes some looking, but there is wide range of entertainment on Netflix and looking for the more unique titles will really spice up your viewing hours.  Try something new today!