Netflix is one of the biggest providers of Internet streaming media, with over 44 million subscribers in over 40 countries around the world. From Hollywood blockbusters such as Avengers Assemble (2012), to British sitcoms like Knowing Me Knowing You (1994), Netflix has something on offer for all of the family. But what does Netflix offer in the way of cult and independent films?
5. Office Space (1999)
Office Space is based on Milton, a series of animated shorts created by writer and director, Mike Judge. The film is a satirical cult comedy that focuses on Peter Gibbons (Ron Livingston), a white-collar employee who works at the fictional IT software company, Initech. Fed up with the mundane tasks that include filling in TPS reports, Peter, along with his two friends at the company Michael Bolton (David Herman) and the often mispronounced Samir Nagheenanajar (Ajay Naidu), try to set up a virus that steals small amounts of money from the company. Mike Judge (Beavis and Butthead, King of the Hill) has created something truly special in Office Space. The film is a real treat for anyone who has suffered from the monotony of a tedious working environment and anyone who has had to put up with an unreasonable boss.
4. Robot and Frank (2012)
Set in the near future, Robot and Frank focuses on an elderly ex-convict named Frank Weld (Frank Langella) who is suffering with dementia. When Frank’s son Hunter (James Marsden) buys him a robot to look after his wellbeing, Frank rekindles his career as a cat burglar. Written by Christopher Ford and directed by Jake Schreier, these previously unknown filmmakers have pulled off a delightfully charming and quirky Indie drama. The film was praised for its comments on technology and mental health – something that a wide audience can really relate to.
3. Pulp Fiction (1994)
Distributed by Miramax films, Pulp Fiction is perhaps Quentin Tarantino’s most popular and well-known film. The 1994 crime film is structured around three interrelated storylines involving mob hit men and prize-fighting boxers. Pulp Fiction is everything that you want from a Tarantino movie; it visually aestheticizes violence, it’s witty and satirical, and it’s full of post-modern pop culture references. It’s not one for the whole family due to the violence and complex narrative that can only be explained visually, but it’s definitely worth a watch.
2. Manhattan (1979)
Manhattan is often considered by many critics as one of Woody Allen’s greatest movies. The romantic-comedy focuses on comedy-writer Isaac Davis (Woody Allen) and his problem with his job, as well as his issues with women. Shot in black and white, the film’s romance narrative is magnificently framed against the backdrop of New York City. The film also features one of the most iconic shots in the history of cinema – Woody Allen and Diane Keaton sitting on a bench admiring the sheer magnitude of the city, and the beauty of the night.
1. Jeff, Who Lives at Home (2011)
The Duplass Brothers (Jay and Mark) are considered by some as two of the founders of the Mumblecore aesthetic. Mumblecore is characterised by low production values, naturalistic dialogue and digital, hand-held shooting. Jeff, Who Lives at Home is the fourth feature film from the Brothers. Jeff (Jason Segel) is 30 years old, unemployed and living at home in his mother’s basement. He is inspired by Signs, the 2002 Sci-fi thriller directed by M. Night Shyamalan, and he believes that if you follow the signs in life, then you will uncover your destiny. Jeff’s destiny begins as a phone call from a wrong number asking for a man named Kevin. Jeff leaves his mother’s house on an errand, and sees a sign. He follows all of the signs until he meets up with his older brother, Pat (Ed Helms), and helps him deal with the problems in his marriage. The film is beautifully shot with quick zooms and wonderful performances from Jason Segel, Ed Helms and Susan Sarandon. If you were to watch only one film on Netflix, then without a shadow of a doubt, it should be this movie.