9 things to watch on Netflix right now

Muhammad Zunair
Apr 5, 2020 · 10 min read

Not sure about what to watch on Netflix? Don’t worry, I can help you with that!

Image from Unsplash

It’s only the 13th day of quarantine and I have already read a dozen of tweets, saying the same thing, ‘I have finished Netflix.What? I mean, are you guys sure that there isn’t anything left on Netflix that you can see? Is that what you’re trying to imply?If that’s the case, I think I have some news for you. You can’t finish Netflix, doesn’t matter how much free time you have! You simply cannot.

Just kidding.

I get that it was sarcasm and people didn’t mean in literal sense that they had finished Netflix. I get that. However, as I told you guys the other day that there is a self-proclaimed movie-geek within me, who finds it difficult to take these remarks/comments lightly. Thus, I have prepared a list of content for you guys, in particular for those who are struggling to find something good on Netflix. Hopefully, this list will serve you for at least a week as you now have a week-lasting supplies of thrill, drama and entertainment.

Yeah, thank me later.

Moreover, I have heard people, complaining about the lack of ‘worth-watching’ content on Netflix. I can’t say that their grievances are justifiable but they do have a point. It is not that Netflix doesn’t provide a load of ‘worth-watching’ content rather the problem is we are mostly focused on movies and TV series, ignoring a major chunk of valuable content on Netflix. If you’re still wondering, I’m talking about Documentaries or as they say Docuseries on Netflix. So, instead of just listing movies and TV series, I have also added documentaries on the list, which you can binge-watch on Netflix right now.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the list.

Documentaries:

1. Formula 1: Drive to Survive

Image from Netflix

You might be thinking that it’s some kind of docuseries for the Formula 1 fans only and from the name, it appears to be the case. However, if you don’t know anything about Formula 1, nothing at all, this series will give you more to enjoy.

Sounds weird? Let me explain. I have been following sports for longer than I can remember but I didn’t know anything about Formula 1 until I watched this series. (Confession Time!) Being a sports fanatic, I knew that Lewis Hamilton had been the champion for the past couple of years but I didn’t know anything else. Thus, the series proved to be a gateway for me to know this sports better and have an exclusive behind the scenes as well. As a result, it doubled the joy. Got it?

Formula 1 and Netflix collaborated to produce this series back in 2018 and it has two seasons, as of now. They are more to come, for sure. But given the lockdown, I think you guys will not be able to see any Formula 1 race in the near future. So, irrespective of whether you’re a Formula 1 fan or not, it’s the perfect time to binge-watch this series.

You guys will surely love it.

2. Inside Bill’s Brain: Decoding Bill Gates

Image from Netflix

Although it has received mixed reviews, yet I believe that this 3-part/episode documentary is a must watch for you guys. I totally agree with the critics that this documentary didn’t convey what its name suggested. From the name, it felt like that the documentary would help us know and understand the mind of one of the greatest tech visionary, business leader and philanthropist. But it provided us with too little in this regard.

Not spoiling it for you but the first part/episode of the documentary looks into the Bill Gates-The Philanthropist, the second part makes an effort to give us something about Bill Gates-The Person, but still not much, and the third part is again centered on his post-Microsoft ventures i.e fight against climate change etc.

Directed by Davis Guggenheim, this series is more focused on Gates’ efforts for better sanitation in India and his search for climate change solutions than the man himself. In my humble opinion, Davis Guggenheim could’ve done better, he could’ve addressed more distinct aspect of Gates’ personality more, could’ve talked more about his competitiveness, could’ve highlighted his strategies for success etc. That ‘Decoding’ part was somewhat missing.

Still, it’s the best available documentary, if one wants to know Bill Gates better. I don’t care much about the reviews and neither you should. So, give it watch and decide it yourself.

3. Who Killed Malcolm X

Image from history.com

Those who know me personally are aware that I’m a big fan of Hajj Malik El-Shabazz aka Malcolm X. Although he doesn’t need any introduction but for those who are living the life of ignorance, Malcolm X was one of the most prominent figure of African-American’s civil rights movement in the 1960s. And whenever I get a chance to read about him or watch anything related to him, I don’t give it a second thought. I simply do it.

Directed by Rachel Dretzin and Phil Bertelsen, this miniseries is based on the works of Abdur-Rahman Muhammad, a historian and tour guide-turned-activist, and it investigates the details surrounding the assassination of Malcolm X.

The best thing about this series is that it is quite fascinating and frustrating at the same time.(Spoilers ahead!) Fascinating in a sense that due to the persistent and three-decades long struggle of Abdur-Rahman Muhammad,we get to know the identities of the true killers. Frustrating in a way that a lot could’ve been done better. The true killers could’ve be arrested years ago if the things were done in the right way.

Nonetheless, it’s a great series and it is also not that long. The series is of 6 episodes and it certainly is an added bonus for your guys.

TV Series:

A round of applause for myself, I guess!

Again, the following three series are solely based on my taste, liking and biases. So, in case you think otherwise, I appreciate and respect your opinion.

1. Better Call Saul

Image from IndieWire

They are calling it the best spin-off but I believe it deserves more credit than just being labelled as a ‘great spin-off’. Being a Breaking Bad fan, I never thought that there would ever be a TV series, related to Breaking Bad, which would be anywhere closer to it, let alone equally good. However, thanks to the creators of Better Call Saul, this series has changed my perspective. Mad respect for Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould for creating such a masterpiece and not making it look like just another prequel.

Pardon my enthusiasm but Better Call Saul deserves to be at least in the top 20 TV series of all time, if not higher. However, it’s a debate for another article.

Coming back to the series, it films the journey of ex-con artist Jimmy McGill, traversing his days from a small-time attorney to his alter ego Saul Goodman.

Those who have watched Breaking Bad might not give it the love it deserves because of the expectations. Also, with all this pre-existing knowledge, it becomes difficult to admire Better Call Saul. However, if any of you haven’t watched Breaking Bad, which is highly unlikely, he would love this series.

Five episodes of the fifth season has already been uploaded on the Netflix and we’re getting closer to the complete transformation of Jimmy McGill into the Saul Goodman of Breaking Bad. So, hurry up, you still have time to catch up.

2. Dark

Image from The Nerd Daily

I don’t know why but I have this unusual connection with the Foreign Language TV series and movies. Sadly, the Foreign Language content often goes unwatched because of the language barrier and our racial biases. However, those who follow Foreign Language content know that these TV series and movies are equally good, or sometimes even better, than the mainstream English language content. Therefore, I am of the view that Dark deserves a mention on this list.

Created by Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese, the show is centered on four interconnected families and explores their secrets and fractured relationships, while keeping the audience puzzled with with science, fiction and mystery.

It is arguably the best TV series on time travel and goes beyond the usual and boring commonalities of time travel shows and movies. So, if you’re a science-fiction fan, who doesn’t mind some drama/mystery either, this show is certainly for you.

3. Fargo

Image from Collider

Yesterday, a friend asked me for some TV series recommendations and the first three names, which came to my mind were True Detective, Mindhunter and Fargo.

With the exception of True Detective(Season 1) and Mindhunter, I don’t think there is a TV series which can be ranked above this show. (Here, I’m not taking into consideration the Hall of Fame TV shows i.e Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, The Wire etc) As you know, True Detective is a HBO show and Mindhunter is far more popular than Fargo so, I thought of dedicating this last spot to Fargo.

The show tells the ‘mysterious tales of deception, intrigue and murder’, which are related to Fargo, North Dakota, one way or another.

This show has all, which you can expect from a crime-thriller TV series. And I think Noah Hawley, the creator of the show, deserves all the credit for giving us such a visual and cinematic treat.

Movies:

1. Sudani from Nigeria

Image from The Week

I can bet that almost 95% of you haven’t heard of this movie and my intention is not to showcase how great of a movie-geek I am rather the idea is to highlight that there are a number of great movies, which couldn’t find their way to the public because of certain reasons. Being a Malayalam language movie, the movie was destined to get less eyes. However, the movie was so good that it somehow found a way to our screens. And a lot of people, including me, are now applauding it for all the good reasons.

Directed by Zakariya Mohammed, the movie is about the struggles of a Nigerien footballer, Samuel, who comes to India to play football and earn some money. But Samuel gets injured and becomes bedridden. In such times of helplessness, his coach Majeed, lets him stay at his house and over time, they develop a close bond.

Moreover, this movie explores a number of subjects such as family, love and poverty and makes us all aware of the harsh realities of this life. So, don’t waste time watching some random Hollywood/Bollywood movies, watch this masterpiece instead.

2. Roma

Image from Moma

Roma is not underrated. Not at all. Rather Roma got all the praise and awards, which it deserved. Roma was in fact the first Netflix original movie to win the Oscar in a ‘big’ category. And it kind of paved path for other Netflix originals to be considered worthy of such awards.

Roma is a deeply personal story, based on director Alfonso Cuarón’s own childhood, and it explores the subject of social realism in quite a fashion. The movie revolves around Cleo, who works as a housekeeper and nanny, and it portrays the personal and social realities of her life.

It’s a great movie, indeed and it deserves to be on your watch-list.

3. The Irishman

The Irishman is about this truck driver Frank Sheeran, who in 1950s gets involved with a crime family and then climbs the ranks to become the top hitman.

When the genius of Martin Scorsese gets complemented by the very likes Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe PesciIt, you can expect nothing less than a haunting masterpiece.

To conclude, I believe this list will be useful for all such people, who don’t want to waste their free time, watching below-par content and for those who have ‘finished’ Netflix.

Honorable Mentions:

Documentaries: Icarus, Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond

TV Series: The People v. O J Simpson, Mindhunter

Movies: Marriage Story, El Camino

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