Instant Gratification: “How to Train Your Dragon 2” and four other good movies now on Netflix

dragon2

Pick of the week: “How To Train Your Dragon 2” — Apparently the first movie didn’t provide ample dragon-training instruction, as there’s a sequel. But it’s a sequel that improves on the already strong first movie, with dazzling action sequences, sharp humor and a genuinely affecting family drama at its core. Plus dragons.

The Comedians of Comedy: The Movie” — Back in 2005, before they were huge, Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, Maria Bamford and Brian Posehn toured the country together as a package deal akin to the “Kings of Comedy.” This hilarious road documentary shows the comics on and off stage on the vanguard of a new kind of smart comedy.

Force Majeure” — My full review is here. In this exquisitely uncomfortable black comedy, a father on vacation with his family flees from what he thinks is an avalanche, leaving his wife and kids behind (but taking his phone). The ripple effects of this momentary but selfish act end up rocking the family to its core in Swedish writer-director Ruben Ostlund’s film.

Food Chains” — Somebody pays for that 99-cent cheeseburger. It’s often the itinerant farm worker, who makes a pittance picking tomatoes so that big corporations can keep their prices low. This eye-opening documentary connects the dots between cheap food and a $42 weekly paycheck for a family of four.

Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels” — Before he became the go-to guy for anachronistic blockbusters like “Sherlock Holmes” and the upcoming “Man from U.N.C.L.E.,” Guy Ritchie made funny, violent, complicated caper films. His 1999 debut, in which several gangs of various degrees of villainy collide over a stolen pair of antique shotguns, remains his best.

 

 

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