The old and reliable titans of Netflix churn out action films like there’s no tomorrow. A bountiful amount for action fans to tucker into, it is just a shame so few are worth the while. Netflix’s repetitive industrialisation of fun and entertainment is the reason audiences receive projects like Kate, an action feature with a bit of drama at its heart when the leading, eponymous assassin (played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead) is poisoned. A nice twist and a strong leading cast member, but haven’t audiences experienced this and all the tones around it time and time again? Maybe so, but the beauty of the action genre is its repetition and how a good idea can be reproduced and reworked time and time again with surprisingly different outcomes.
Are we to truly believe the apocalypse around us if a madman living in a bunker tells us the world has ended? No questions asked, hunker down and thrive underground with a selection of VHS tapes and a sufficient amount of canned soup. Director Dan Trachtenberg hunches down and hides away from the apocalypse. 10 Cloverfield Lane may not have much to do with the original Cloverfield beyond panic on the streets of America, but it is the rapid genre change and pacing decisions that make this such an impressive sequel. It is barely even a sequel. Moving so far away from the core elements of handheld horror at the heart of the original, 10 Cloverfield Lane fashions out its own strand of tension.
I’ve been wanting to watch Swiss Army Man for years. Much like Naked, it had been on my watchlist since I’d very first kindled even an inkling of interest in film. No, I don’t know why it was such an early contender for me to watch, but I suppose it was the premise of Paul Dano dragging around a corpse played by Daniel Radcliffe that dragged me into the film at first. Being trapped on a fantastical island, alone, would be quite the terrifying thought, but having the man that played Harry Potter for eight films is an intensely horrific fever dream.