Instant Picks of the Week 8/4/17
Gone are the days of scrolling mindlessly through your queue! No longer will you have to sift through the vastness of what’s coming to the instant viewing wastelands this month! Whether you’re looking for a stellar film or an exciting new show to binge, Instant Picks of the Week brings you the hottest releases in film and television on instant viewing platforms that we know you’ll love, or at the very least not despise.
TAKE ME TO THE RIVER (Netflix)
Good, even great, even though it’s reminiscent of THE HUNT. But TAKE ME TO THE RIVER uses its red herrings like they’re magic cards, resulting in a film that feels more scripted than it does natural; good thing that virtually all of the narrative beats land. A lot of this could be a stage play, with all of its character imperfections coming to light in breathtaking fashion. Everything culminates in an explosive and absolutely nauseating third act, a gut-churning, disturbing, and wildly effective play on our expectations and emotions up to that point; it also happens to be really far-fetched. And yet, some of the more dramatic suspensions of disbelief contribute to some really effective emotional manipulation. I felt like play dough in director Matt Sobel’s hands. For what it’s worth, this is one hell of a debut.
TOKYO TRIBE (Netflix)
Never in my life have I had such regrets for not learning a language. I can only imagine the splendor of watching TOKYO TRIBE if you’re actually fluent in Japanese. There’s no need to read subtitles, and every clever rhyme registers as its own perfectly timed gag. And even as a foreigner, this is sonically, visually, and conceptually orgasmic to the nth degree. There’s really no need to tell anybody how good this is. TOKYO TRIBE operates in a ballistic ballpark, somewhere in the pantheon of Mount Olympus, right beside every other zany masterpiece. There nothing quite like it, and it’s addictively jaw-dropping. I mean, this is a trap-rap, gang-war, up-skirt, gore-opera; need I say more? I could go into a snobby tirade about how this elegantly borrows from Jacques Demy to Ridley Scott, capturing a universe blissfully populated with color, light, and patterns. It’s if THE WARRIORS was the coolest looking anime adaptation ever made. Or THE UMBRELLAS OF CHERBOURG existed in a brazenly misogynistic man’s world. Dare I drop a Kurosawa reference? The point is that TOKYO TRIBE looks and feels like so many things, but at the end of the day it’s all director Sion Sono; a stylist at his prime, firing off more novel concepts per minute than an entire year’s worth of Hollywood blockbusters.