“Tangerine” (Netflix) — My full review is here. You might think a film about two transgender prostitutes working the streets of Los Angeles on Christmas Eve might be a bit of a downer, but Sean Baker’s film is bright, kinetic and awfully funny, even as it poignantly shows the power of friendship among those living on the margins of society.
“Top Five” (Amazon Prime) — My full review is here. Greatness eludes star-writer-director Chris Rock’s semi-autobiographical tale of a comedian-turned-movie-star navigating love and fame, but it’s still a lot of fun, especially when Rock and Rosario Dawson (playing a New York Times reporter) banter while walking the streets of New York City.
“A Hard Day” (Netflix) — My full review is here. A corrupt cop hits a pedestrian while driving back to his office to curtail an Internal Affairs investigation and must hide the body, a drawer full of money and his guilt in a wildly entertaining South Korean thriller that piles hardship after hardship on an antihero who kind of deserves it.
“Darkman” (Netflix) — While Sam Raimi is rebooting his “Evil Dead” franchise with the “Ash vs. Evil Dead” series on Starz, he ought to revive this 1990 sleeper starring Liam Neeson as a scientist, disfigured in a lab accident, who wears lifelike masks to confound and defeat his enemies.
“Stir of Echoes” (Netflix) — UW-Madison alum David Koepp wrote and directed this chiller about a working-class Chicago man who finds himself getting visions of a horrible crime in his neighborhood in an entertaining spin on a familiar genre.