Instant Gratification: “I Am Not Your Negro” and four other good movies to watch on Netflix and Amazon Prime

baldwin

I Am Not Your Negro” (Amazon Prime) — My full review is here. Author James Baldwin’s words on race in America come to fiery life in this documentary, which artfully puts ’60s civil rights struggles hand in hand with Black Lives Matter protests to show how a society in which one man is allowed to subjugate another has a moral sickness that infects both oppressed and oppressor.

Zodiac” (Netflix) — David Fincher’s epic exploration of the hunt for the notorious San Francisco killer, as seen through the eyes of a pair of journalists and a pair of detectives, is both a masterful police procedural and that terrifying nightmare where that thing you’re trying to reach is forever just out of your grasp. Robert Downey, Jr. will never be better than as the cocky star journalist whose obsession with catching the Zodiac Killer ends up destroying him.

Young Frankenstein” (Netflix) — Mel Brooks’ classic and affectionate send-up of Universal horror movies comes and goes on Netflix, so catch it while it’s back. It’s also scarier than Tom Cruise’s ‘The Mummy.”

Blue Velvet” (Amazon Prime) — Viewers of “Twin Peaks” might want to take a breather and go back to David Lynch’s frightening 1986 masterpiece, which also peels away the veneer of an ordinary small town to show the lust and rot within.

The Sixth Sense” (Netflix) — Turns out the real twist ending was that, after making terrific thrillers like this and “Unbreakable,” M. Night Shyamalan’s name would somehow become synonymous with bad movies. Never saw that one coming.

 

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