From Scratch is an autobiographical romance about an American woman who falls in love with a Sicilian man while studying abroad in Italy and then builds a life with him in the United States. When she unexpectedly loses him to illness, she is challenged to pull herself through grief so she can raise their daughter as they would have raised her together: with hope, joy and infinite love.
Tembi Locke's sister, Attica Locke When They See Us, Empire, will adapt the book and serve as showrunner. She executive produces with Zoe, Cisely and Mariel Saldana; Witherspoon and her Hello Sunshine partner, Lauren Neustadter; and Richard Abate, Jermaine Johnson and Will Rowbotham of 3 Arts Entertainment.
"Attica and I are honored to be adapting From Scratchwith the visionary Reese Witherspoon, Lauren Neustadter, Richard Abate and the incredibly gifted Zoe Saldana," said Tembi Locke. "We have a shared interest in championing stories that bring a rich tapestry of experiences to the screen. I am thrilled that this global love story has found a perfect home at Netflix."
Added Saldana, "This is a profound true story of love and family, deprivation and nourishment, that needs to be brought to life on the screen as Tembi Locke brought it vividly to life for me on the page. We are grateful to Netflix and thrilled to be working with Reese, Lauren, Attica and 3 Arts on this wonderful project."
From Scratchwas published in April by Simon and Schuster. The book was the May pick for Reese's Book Club, which has become a powerhouse in the publishing industry. The partnership with Hello Sunshine has helped several titles become best-sellers.
"Tembi's memoir is a raw and tender exhibition of life in all its pieces," said Witherspoon. "She brings you into her love, her loss and her resilience with such vulnerability and strength. We immediately fell for Attica and Tembi's vision and feel honored to have the opportunity to help bring it to life onscreen. We could not imagine more perfect partners for this than Zoe and her sisters and 3 Arts Entertainment, along with the incredible team at Netflix."
"Between the Locke sisters and the Saldana sisters, I've never seen a show that's more of a family affair," said Channing Dungey, vp original series at Netflix. "Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine have been producing really exciting content, and we're thrilled to make this powerful and emotional series with them."
Comedy is one of the most personal genres of entertainment, as subjective and divisive as politics. Thank heavens, then, for the wide library of Netflix, which is here to service all of our laughter needs. Craving a traditional laugh-tracked sitcom? A more serious, single-cam series? A mockumentary? Done, done, and done. So here are the 15 funniest shows on Netflix streaming right now.
Related: The Best Dark Comedies On Netflix Right Now
NBC 1. The Office U.S.
9 seasons, 201 episodes | IMDb: 8.8/10
While this The Office owes its existence to the original, this is a great example of the rare success of an American remake of a beloved British property. The U.K. version was the original cringe comedy, starring Ricky Gervais as clueless boss David Brent, whose desperate attempts at connecting with his underlings are a painful exercise in futility. Steve Carell plays his American counterpart, though his Michael Scott, while equally awkward, proves himself to be more sympathetic as time goes on. There are some who will never see the U.S. version as anything other than a pale imitation of its British predecessor, and it's true that its overextended existence it really should have ended when Carell departed in season seven takes some of the shine out of the series. But both can and should be viewed on their own merits, and when enjoyed as such, have moments of equal, cringe-inducing brilliance. Unfortunately, the U.S. version is the only one on Netflix right now.
NBC 2. Parks and Recreation
7 seasons, 125 episodes | IMDb: 8.6/10
The idealism of longtime public servant Leslie Knope can seem a little hard to swallow in these post-2016 election times, but that's precisely why we need Parks and Rec: Leslie's optimism makes us believe that government — and life itself — can truly be good if you stand by your work and imbue everything you do with passion and an undying hunger for waffles. And if you aren't ready to adopt such a sunny disposition for yourself just yet, you can always look for distraction and a laugh in a classic like “Flu Season.” Or “Lil' Sebastian.” Or “The Debate.” Or “Halloween Surprise.” Or any number of episodes populated by the hilarious, delightfully demented residents of Pawnee Perd Hapley, Joan Callamezzo, Ethel Beavers, and so many more and the stacked cast of regulars populating the Parks Department Chris Pratt, the MVP of non-sequiturs and pratfalls; Jim O'Heir, the perennially upbeat punching bag Jerry/Larry/Terry/Garry. And if nothing else, Parks gave us Ron Swanson, a pyramid of greatness unto himself. You had us at “meat tornado.”
Fox 3. Arrested Development
5 seasons, 91 episodes | IMDb: 8.8/10
Setting aside its disjointed fourth season a divisive effort that's best viewed as its own entity, Arrested Development is a modern comedy classic, a screwball farce masquerading as a mockumentary about an inherently unlikable clan of rich folks who are as out of touch how much could a banana cost — ten dollars? as they are dysfunctional Motherboy XXX. When patriarch George Sr. is arrested for fraud, it sends the clueless Bluths into a tailspin, desperately trying to cling to their remaining cash and the last vestiges of their lavish lifestyle, propping up the illusion tricks are something a whore does for money in increasingly ridiculous ways and prompting increasingly exasperated commentary from narrator Ron Howard. Breakfast Family may be the most important thing, but when it's populated with hop-ons, nevernudes who blue themselves, and Franklin the puppet, can you blame Michael for continuously threatening to bail on his? Fortunately, you won't have any reservations about sticking with the Bluths, especially since the first three seasons — and their intricate, carefully plotted jokes — reward multiple viewings.
NBC 4. The Good Place
3 seasons, 37 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
Michael Schur The Office, Parks and Recreation, Brooklyn Nine-Nine steps away from his usual workplace sitcom for this afterlife comedy, which focuses on Eleanor Shellstrop Kristen Bell, who finds herself in “the good place” after her life comes to an end. Though told this is because she's led a good, altruistic life, Eleanor knows she's pretty much a terrible person and is only in this utopia because of its architect's Ted Danson mistake. With this limitless, fictional world, Schur is able to take chances and create a truly goofy show that still deals with morality and other philosophical issues. While the first season is great, a spoiler-filled twist really opens up the show's potential in its second season.
Netflix 5. Bojack Horseman
6 seasons, 76 episodes | IMDb: 8.6/10
BoJack Horseman might originally turn off viewers in its first few episodes due to its silliness. But it gets deeper than a show about a horse-man and fellow animal-people should get, getting very real and very depressing in some spots. But there's always a layer of comedy woven into its intricate plots that are only ened by the sadness. After all, there's a recurring character named 'Vincent Adultman' who is very clearly a few young children stacked up inside a trench coat. That's the kind of show we're dealing with here.
CBC 6. Schitt's Creek
5 seasons, 66 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara star in this Canadian sitcom about a wealthy family forced to scale down their extravagant lifestyle with hilarious results. Levy plays Johnny Rose, a rich video-store magnate who loses his fortune when his business manager fails to pay his taxes. O'Hara plays his wife, Moira, a former soap opera star who, along with her husband and their two pampered children, must move to a town called Schitt's Creek. Johnny bought the town as a joke when the family had more money than they could spend, but now, the town and its residents serve as a comedic wake-up call for a guy who has problems rooting himself in reality. Levy is brilliant in this thing and it's a damn shame the show is so overlooked by American audiences. Let's change that.
10 seasons, 236 episodes | IMDb: 8.9/10
There are some who argue that Friends was an overrated sitcom, with protagonists as unrealistic as they were lily-white. But like a big bowl of mac 'n cheese, Friends is TV comfort food: not exactly great for you, but sometimes exactly what's needed. From classic episodes like “The One With the Embryos” and “The One Where Everybody Finds Out” to its sprawling cast of eccentric supporting characters, the enduringly funny Friends will be there for you when you need to kick back and forget about the real world for a while.
8. Big Mouth
3 seasons, 32 episodes | IMDb: 8/10
The animated, coming-of-age comedy from Nick Kroll is full of familiar voices and even more familiar life problems. Centered on a group of pre-pubescent friends, Kroll voices a younger version of himself, a kid named Andrew who's going through some embarrassing life changes like inconvenient erections and strange wet dreams and bat-mitzvah meltdowns. All these traumatizing and hilarious happenings are usually caused by Maurice, Andrew's own Hormone Monster also voiced by Kroll who takes pleasure literally in abusing the poor kid. As painfully accurate as the show is, if you're lucky enough to be removed from that angst-ridden era of life, you'll probably appreciate the humor in all of it.
9. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
4 seasons, 62 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
The title may initially turn you off — as may its status as a rom-com/musical hybrid airing on The CW — but as protagonist Rebecca Bunch will tell you, the situation with Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a lot more nuanced than that. The genre-bending show spends just as much time churning out toe-tapping tunes as it does exploring the depths of mental illness, sometimes simultaneously, but stops just short of becoming an outright dramedy thanks to the impeccable comedic timing of its stellar cast, led by Rachel Bloom as Rebecca and Donna Lynne Champlin as Bex's coworker and BFF, Paula. There's plenty of comedy to mine from its music songs like “Settle for Me,” “Textmergency,” “West Covina,” and “Dream Ghost” are as catchy as they are key to plot development, but it's the throwaway moments that really make the show pop: Paula the singing raccoon, Daryl proudly declaring himself a “bothsexual,” Heather's expert knowledge of mating signals, every aside uttered by Father Brah. If loving this show makes us C-R-A-Z-Y, so be it.
8 seasons, 79 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
It helps if you've lived in and/or been to Portland, and like most sketch comedy, Portlandia is wildly hit and miss, but the hits are often huge, and the misses are easy enough to fast-forward through. It's clever and strangely understated for sketch comedy, and although it works best as a send-up of Portland, the absurdist comedy is still effective outside of the Northwest.
11. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
4 seasons, 51 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
This joyful series has no business being so sunny, especially considering its pitch-black premise: Kimmy, kidnapped as a teenager and forced to live among a doomsday cult in an underground bunker, is finally rescued, and trying to rebuild her life. But as played by the effervescent Ellie Kemper, this female is strong as hell, and determined to make the most of her freedom. A ragtag roster of supporting characters helps her through her transition her roommate Titus the most delightful among them, though pretty much everyone she encounters is comedy gold, whether it's figuring out what slang is outdated, or how best to kill the sentient robot you suspect is sleeping with your husband. Season two delves a little deeper into the psychological toll the Reverend's kidnapping had on Kimmy, but despite the darker material, the show maintains its madcap charm. Special shout-out to delightful guest star Tina Fey, who co-created the show with her 30 Rock collaborator Robert Carlock.
2 seasons, 13 episodes | IMDb: 8.3/10
Ricky Gervais followed up his nearly unfollowable first show, The Office, with Extras, another tale loosely based on his own life, only this time his struggles with finding and being satisfied with success in television. On the exterior, Gervais' character Andy Millman is much different from The Office's David Brent, but at their core they're the same, chasing fame and thinking they're better than they actually are. The show is stolen, though, by Millman's refreshingly platonic friendship with Maggie Ashley Jensen, his clueless agent co-creator Stephen Merchant, and the celebrities willing to poke fun at themselves in every episode including a bitingly memorable diddy from the late David Bowie. It's another two-series-and-a-Christmas-special show, so a binge'll take no time at all.
13. American Vandal
2 seasons, 16 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
“Who did the dicks?” The question seems juvenile at first, but it's the enigma that drives American Vandal. Netflix decided to produce a parody heavily inspired by one of its own shows, Making A Murderer, with this teen mockumentary that focuses on the vandalism of 27 faculty cars in a school parking lot. With all the evidence pointing toward the local troublemaker/burnout, the case seems wrapped up before it even begins, but once the protagonists start looking more closely at what really happened, everyone becomes a suspect. It's a hilarious show but also a tense one as the mystery gets deeper and deeper. Season two only builds on season one's success, this time having the teen investigate a poop conspiracy that makes those dick jokes look tame. Unfortunately, Netflix has pulled the plug on the show.
14. I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson
1 season, 6 episodes | IMDb: 7.6/10
Saturday Night Live and Detroiters alum Tim Robinson creates and stars in this 15-minute sketch comedy series that is perfectly happy to offer up a few irreverent laughs without all of the post-comedy commentary that weighs down other funny shows in 2019. It's a mixed bag of unconnected stories about toddler pageants and old men out for revenge and how Instagram has warped our social interactions in hilariously bizarre ways. What each of these skits has in common is Robinson's particular brand of comedy and his unrivaled ability to make you laugh.
15. I'm Sorry
2 season, 20 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
Andrea Savage is brilliant in this throwaway comedy series about a comedy writer, wife, and mom who attempts to forge a normal life despite her neuroses and odd job requirements. Kathy Baker and Tom Everett Scott also star, and some funny names, including Jason Mantzoukas, pop up occasionally, but the real star is Savage. She's witty and sharp and crass and perfectly fine with all of it. There aren't any huge, climactic plot point per episode — the show deals mostly with weird neighbors and common parenting mistakes and relationship humor — but it doesn't need any of that to make us laugh. It just needs Andrea Savage.
9 seasons, 110 episodes | IMDb: 8.7/10
The long-running Showtime series understands better than any other drama on television what it's like to be poor in America. Set in Chicago, Shameless follows the lives of the Gallagher family as they struggle beneath the poverty line to make ends meet. The family is afflicted with alcoholism, drug addiction, mental illness, poor decision-making skills, and the kind of terrible luck that so often follows poor families, but they've also got each other, their resilience, and a determination to break the cycle, but in Shameless, impoverishment is the boogeyman that always comes back, hilariously and heartbreakingly.
11 seasons, 275 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
Mike Schur, the creator of Parks and Recreation, is an avowed disciple of Cheers, citing the NBC sitcom as his favorite show and driving influence. It's not hard to see why: Cheers is a classic for a reason, a sitcom populated with colorful characters Norm!, complicated relationships Sam and Diane, and reliably hilarious hijinks that legendary Thanksgiving food fight that easily sustain its 11 seasons. Schur has often said that he modeled the protagonists of Parks on the characters of Cheers, people who genuinely liked each other in spite of their differences. Sure, Cheers frequently features caustic one-liners particularly those delivered by Carla and grating personalities why anyone hung out with Cliff is a bit of a head-scratcher. But despite the occasional unpleasantness, Cheers isn't just a place where everybody knows your name — it's where everybody's family, misfit barflies and all.
18. The Inbetweeners
3 seasons, 18 episodes | IMDb: 8.3/10
Plenty of comedies focus on those awkward teenage years, but few are as painfully funny as The Inbetweeners, a Britcom about four pals struggling to make it through high school, and all the bullying, underage drinking, and thwarted sexual encounters — so, so many thwarted sexual encounters — that go with it. The lads can sometimes revert too easily to their archetypes Will is the impossibly nerdy protagonist who can't seem to ever do or say the right thing; Jay, the crude skirt-chaser whose intact virginity is the bane of his existence, but you'll be laughing too hard at their boneheaded antics and horrendous luck to care.
19. Jane the Virgin
5 seasons, 100 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
This genre-defying telenovela send-up has one of the weirdest premises of any show, ever: Jane Villanueva, a devout Catholic who's vowed to remain a virgin until marriage, is accidentally artificially inseminated during a routine gynecological visit, and becomes pregnant. It sounds more soap operatic than comedic, but that's where Jane proves naysayers wrong, infusing the title character's unlikely journey with countless laugh-out-loud funny moments that shock and delight viewers at every turn. While Gina Rodriguez's radiant performance as Jane is the heart of the show, its comedic success is largely thanks to two characters: Her long-lost father, telenovela superstar Rogelio de la Vega Jaime Camil; and the Narrator brilliantly voiced by Anthony Mendez, whose helpful explanations and perfectly timed interjections make him as integral to the proceedings as Jane herself. The Narrator is both an audience stand-in regularly exclaiming “OMG!” at surprising developments and the ultimate insider showrunners have teased that his connection to the characters runs deeper than just an omniscient voiceover presence. The preening Rogelio steals the show; the Narrator keeps you coming back for more.
20. The End Of The F***ing World
2 seasons, 16 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
The End of the F***ing World is a dark comedy based on the comic series by Charles S. Forsman about James Alex Lawther, a withdrawn and disturbed 17-year-old who believes he is a psychopath, and his burgeoning Bonnie & Clyde-like relationship with Alyssa Jessica Barden, a classmate damaged by a dysfunctional family. Written by Charlie Covell and directed by Jonathan Entwistle and Lucy Tcherniak, the series is akin to a high school version of True Romance and about two deeply troubled, misanthropic teenagers who find comfort in one another and who are willing, if necessary, to perpetrate crimes to maintain their relationship. It's bleakly funny but things take a more serious turn in season two, when Alyssa is left managing the aftermath of the pair's crime spree and a new psychopath enters the mix.
Cops and robbers have been some of the most durable subjects for TV since the inception of broadcast television: Jack Webb's Dragnet was the original docudrama. And Netflix is no exception, with great shows like Orange Is The New Black, Breaking Bad, and Peaky Blinders tackling everything from the emotional connections between gang members to the struggles of surviving prison. But, when you're done with those, there are thousands of hours of mysteries, questionable crimes, and dangerous criminals, but we've narrowed it down to the fifteen best crime shows on Netflix to binge on.
Related: The Best Crime Movies On Netflix Right Now
American Crime Story
2 seasons, 19 episodes | IMDb: 8.5/10
Ryan Murphy has made a name for himself on TV thanks to his nightmare-inducing anthology series, but this mini-series, which chronicles the events leading up to and following the murder trial of O.J. Simpson, proved the showrunner can do drama like no one else. Employing an award-winning cast including Sarah Paulson, Sterling K. Brown, Courtney B. Vance, Cuba Gooding Jr., and John Travolta, Murphy charts the fall of one of the most beloved sports stars in a case that gripped the nation. The events are well-known, but it's the meat added to the behind-the-scenes details, particularly Paulson's portrayal of Marcia Clark, that make this a worthwhile watch. In its second season, the show moves focus on the assassination of design legend Gianni Versace by Andrew Cunanan. While not as strong as the amazing ensemble in Season 1, Season 2 boasts memorable portrayals of conflicted, complex figures by Darren Criss, Penelope Cruz, Édgar Ramírez, and surprisingly Ricky Martin.
1 season, 6 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
The UK's most popular new drama has made its way across the pond. The procedural thriller stars Game of Thrones' Richard Madden as David Budd, a military vet turned police officer tasked with protecting a high-profile politician during a particularly dicey time. There's plenty of suspense and action to string you along, coupled with a vulnerable performance by Madden, who ditches his King of the North swagger to play a man conflicted by his past and his present duty to his country.
Making A Murderer
2 seasons, 20 episodes | IMDb: 8.6/10
This is one of Netflix's most popular documentary series, and you'll understand why after one episode. The show follows the case of Steven Avery and his nephew Brendan Dassey, who were arrested for the murder of photographer Teresa Halbach. But what initially appears to be a clear-cut case becomes much more questionable once filmmakers Moira Demos and Laura Ricciardi take you inside a system that seems designed to generate guilty verdicts rather than discover the truth. The show's second season, perhaps its strongest, follows Avery's appeal process led by a tough-as-nails attorney who digs past the red tape to expose corruption at the highest levels of our judicial system. If the first season is a whodunnit, the second explores how such a crime was pinned on what very well could be an innocent man.
When They See Us
1 season, 4 episodes | IMDb: 9/10
Director Ava DuVernay's limited series about the wrongfully accused men in the Central Park Five case is an emotionally heavy reimagining of a truly tragic event in our history. The series sheds light on racial profiling and corruption in the NYPD as a group of young Black men are targeted for a heinous crime and put on trial with little evidence. It's a gripping, heartbreaking retelling, but one that feels sadly relevant.
2 seasons, 19 episodes | IMDb: 8.5/10
Based on the book by John Douglas, the real-life FBI agent who made “criminal profiler” a job Hollywood thought every FBI agent had, David Fincher's moody procedural series is less focused on the whodunit, as usually that's solved by the time they show up, and more about the psychological wear and tear that comes from trying to explore the minds of people compelled to murder, or do it because they're bored, or any of a host of other reasons. It's a fascinating character drama about crime and how some crimes eat at us.
2 seasons, 20 episodes | IMDb: 8.3/10
Ozark, from part of the team behind Ben Affleck's The Accountant, is an example of what I call stress-watching television. A combination of Breaking Bad and Bloodline, Ozark sees a money launderer Jason Bateman and his wife Laura Linney move from Chicago to backwoods Missouri in an effort to clean $8 million in three months, lest their entire family be killed by a Mexican drug cartel. It's not a fun show, and it's barely entertaining, but like Bloodline, it's the kind of series where the viewer is anxious to binge through it just to see if the antagonists will survive and how. It's a seedy, well-written, well-acted series, and Bateman is terrific, but the entire point of Ozark is to put the viewer through the wringer: It's tense and stressful, and we don't watch for resolution; we watch for relief.
2 seasons, 13 episodes | IMDb: 8.5/10
This ironically titled show follows beat cop Catherine Cawood Sarah Lancashire as she juggles her job, her complicated feelings about a local man, and the brutal crime that drove her daughter to suicide. As she methodically assembles the case against who she thinks the perpetrator is, a tragedy begins to come into focus. Happy Valley can be a tough watch, but the focus on day-to-day policing, and Lancashire's rich performance makes it a show we're glad Netflix tracked down.
4 seasons, 40 episodes | IMDb: 8.8/10
With Narcos, Netflix takes on the rise and fall of Colombian kingpin Pablo Escobar and the Medellín drug cartel. Splicing together dramatized scenes and actual news footage, Brazilian filmmaker José Padilha Elite Squad combines Scarface and Goodfellas to track the life of Escobar. However, the real story here is not the characters as much as it is the Colombian drug trade and the spread of cocaine from South America into the U.S. in the 1980s. Escobar is used as a vehicle to illustrate the futility of the American drug war and the toll it took on both the criminals in Colombia and the authorities in the U.S. The show's fourth season, billed as an entire separate entry, gives us a stylish re-imagining of the early days of Mexico's drug war with Diego Luna playing the new big bad, a drug lord looking to expand his reach, while Michael Pena plays the fed tasked with busting his operation.
5 seasons, 63 episodes | IMDb: 8.3/10
Originally airing on A&E, and adapted from a popular mystery series, Longmire follows the sheriff of the title as he solves murder mysteries in and around the Wyoming county he's elected sheriff of, while battling with local tribal authorities, the county government, and powerful families. What makes Longmire such a fascinating series is that what could just be Law & Order: Wyoming quickly becomes a series about aging men struggling with their feelings, their choices, and the truth hollowing out the comfortable world they've built for themselves, often looking squarely at the tropes of the Western and how they do and don't hold up in the modern world. Anchored by Robert Taylor in the title role you might remember him as one of Agent Smith's sidekicks in The Matrix and Lou Diamond Phillips as Henry Standing Bear, Longmire's good friend and a man often stuck between his native heritage and the “white” world he's expected to blend into, it's a thoughtful, unexpectedly engaging series.
Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes
1 season, 4 episodes | IMDb: 7.9/10
Ted Bundy is one of the most infamous serial killers in American history so you'd think we'd know the whole of this sociopath's exploits by now, but this docuseries manages to find a new angle on the story of Bundy's descent into madness. Through confessional recordings, victims' testimonies, and investigative reporting, the short series charts how Bundy, a handsome, educated white man, was able to deceive so many for so long, murdering young women along the way. What's even more interesting about this series is that, while the show explores how Bundy's crimes made him an idol for some, it also does justice by his victims, detailing their backstories and interviewing their surviving family members.
2 seasons, 22 episodes | IMDb: 8/10
Jessica Biel stars as a woman with a dark past in this mystery series with Bill Pullman and Christopher Abbot. Biel plays Cora, a wife and mother who commits a horrific act of violence during a family beach trip for no apparent reason. It's only once a detective Pullman begins looking into her life before the murder does he discover a conspiracy plot as tangled as it is gruesome.
1 season, 10 episodes | IMDb: 8.2/10
It's the question every TV fan hears sooner or later: “Have you seen The Wire?” Sadly, The Wire is over at Amazon, but on Netflix, there's a sometimes overlooked spiritual sibling worth looking into. Irish novelist and screenwriter Ronan Bennett's series follows Ra'Nell, a boy struggling to survive in public housing when his mother is committed to an institution, and two young drug dealers find themselves working their way up the food chain to the top of a questionable heap. Bennett's warmth and humanity helps bring into focus the very real struggles preteens at the bottom of Irish society and makes for a series you won't soon forget.
7 seasons, 92 episodes | IMDb: 8.7/10
If Orange Is The New Black is taking forever to come back for you, consider picking up the more serious Australian take on women in prison, Wentworth. A reimagining of the classic Australian drama Prisoner, it follows a woman in jail for attempted murder as the court figures out her case. It's a compelling take on the prison drama with unexpected turns, being in Australia, and one of Netflix's best sleeper series.
5 seasons, 100 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
Ostensibly a story about the city of Batman while Batman is still just young Bruce Wayne, Gotham quickly became the kind of sprawling, bizarre campy drama that shows like Law & Order: SVU and NCIS can only wish they were. While the show has recognizable Batman villains and even makes characters like Jim Gordon and the Penguin central to the plot, in the end it's a grandiose melodrama about an utterly corrupt city and the one man at its center hoping to change it one case at a time. Also a character is kidnapped by pirates. No, really. That happens.
4 seasons, 30 episodes | IMDb: 8.4/10
Sometimes the justice system fails, and the wrong person is punished for a crime they didn't commit. Rectify follows Daniel Holden Aden Young as, after spending half his life with a death sentence hanging over his head, is cleared by DNA evidence and has to adjust to life as not just a free man, even as many around him seek to undo his release.
Netflix founder and CEO Reed Hastings tackled a wide array of issues surrounding the streaming giant during a packed 30-minute keynote session at the New York Times‘ DealBook conference Wednesday.
Asked about Topic A, the unprecedented wave of streaming competition coming from Apple and Disney this month and then WarnerMedia and NBCUniversal next year, Hastings reiterated his confidence in his company. Reprising the sentiment he has expressed on recent earnings calls and other public appearances, he said customers would subscribe to several services. Subscription numbers, though, should not be the metric being tracked, he argued.
“The real measurement will be time,” he told moderator Andrew Ross Sorkin. “How do consumers vote with their evenings?”
Apple and traditional media players have spotted Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and YouTube more than a decade, Hastings said. “Everyone has realized, ‘Wow, this internet thing really works!” he cracked.
Content spending, which has reached a once-unfathomable $15 billion a year, is not going to moderate anytime soon, Hastings said. “We’re planning on taking spending up quite a bit.”
With linear TV around the world in a secular decline, there are plenty of viewers to harvest, Hasting said. Asked during the Q&A portion if the subscriber dip as business matures is going to be reversible, Hastings said,”We’re going to try to do the absolute best content that we can. And ultimately that’s going to draw in more subscribers. Whether that’s more or less than last year or next year, it’s hard to tell.”
Hastings defended Netflix’s decision to edit an episode of Patriot Act in which host Hasan Minhaj criticized Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman at behest of the Saudi government. “We're not in the news business,” he said matter-of-factly. “We're not trying to do ‘truth to power.’ … We can accomplish more by being entertainment and trying to influence the way people live, rather than being another news channel.”
Sorkin read from a New York Times editorial criticizing the move as rank censorship. Hastings shrugged, “You’re the New York Times. You’re in the truth-to-power business.”
As to movie release windows, Hastings said he didn’t expect any dramatic changes coming to the Netflix model. After intense negotiations, the company just released Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman in a limited run after large circuits declined to shorten the traditional window. While Hastings said he sees “a lot of movies in theaters” and enjoys the experience, he wasn’t inclined to move toward acquiring theaters, as some have speculated. The traditional lag between the big screen and the small deprives subscribers of what they want, he reasoned.
When David Chang opened Momofuku Noodle Bar in 2004, he almost immediately took the culinary world by storm. Within a few short years, he was one of the most widely known, wildly hyped, and deeply beloved chefs in America. More restaurants followed. In 2007, he was the James Beard Rising Star Chef of the Year. In 2009, he scored his second Michelin star. In 2011, he launched the much-lauded renegade food magazine, Lucky Peach — an outlet which helped make food conversation fun again.
With his stratospheric level of rekown, it was only a matter of time before Chang ended up on TV. After doing the fod competition judging rounds for a few years, he hosted the first season of the PBS-produced, Anthony Bourdain-created Mind of a Chef. In 2018, he hosted Ugly, Delicious on Netflix — delving deep into the food system. Last week, Chang returned to Netflix with Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. The show takes a more typical form of travel TV — “man goes to place, eats some stuff, sees some places, draws a few conclusions” — with one cool wrinkle: Chang is all too willing to cede hosting duties to his guests. It's an interesting wrinkle on an interesting show, one in which one of the best chefs alive explores the world with wide-eyes and an eager palate.
I spoke with Chang this week about the show, the loss of Anthony Bourdain, and the importance of travel in shaping our modern world.
One of the things I love about what you do with your different shows is that they're still kind of this fast and loose — a little bit shaggy. It's an “I'm figuring this thing out as I go” energy that I like. Is that intentional? Is that something that you do because you kind of are a post-modernist who wants to break the conventions or what's your thought on that?
Well, yeah, I can definitely see that. I don't know if I've ever thought about it other than what you see as me trying to figure it out, that's literally my daily existence. That's just who I am as a person. And if that comes across that way it's because I think that if I can summarize it, I think that's what people would say if they work with me or know me really well is I'm constantly figuring something out.
Something I really like about the show is that there's that energy of, “What are we going to do today?” kind of approach to eating and in Seth's case, smoking weed. Or in Chrissy's case, touring Marrakesh. Did you know from the outset that you wanted to let the guests lead the way? How much did you guys use fixers? To what degree did you kind of make sure that there was something happening vs. just meandering?
Well, the planning part was... how should I say? It was both easy and difficult.
Number one, right? Trying to find the right balance of things that we need to discover. And that was definitely the case for Cambodia, for instance. We're sort of on a time crunch. How do we do all the things that we want to do within a certain amount of time? And that's not easy. But also we sort of have to figure out what stories and what foods and which kinds of conversations are going to work. So that was hard, right? Just because you can go somewhere doesn't mean you should. Maybe it's already been covered or maybe it's not something that we want to do.
Sure. There are places that have been “travel show”-ed to death.
And maybe there's another way to talk about those places. Because, for instance, going back to Cambodia I feel like a lot of people would expect a visit to the Killing Fields. That's sort of expected when you make a show there. And of course that's important to cover. But maybe there's another way to talk about the atrocities of the genocide?
I don't know if we were successful, but that's at least one of the goals was, “How do we do something but do it in a different light?”
That was one part of it. The other part was, “How do we go to places that... for instance, Vancouver, this is a town that Seth is extraordinarily proud of — so how do we share that?” It becomes almost him editing what he wants to represent. So I think what was really difficult for me was going into these things is like, “I'm not a natural at this.” It was very difficult for me to figure out what kind of rhythm each guest wanted. Because it's not a show that's the same thing over and over again and I had to find a rhythm with the other person.
That was made easier because they're fantastic people. But I was nervous.
The show leans heavier into the use of guests than Bourdain did. And so you're very much at the whim of the guests, which I think is interesting. I mean what you're pitching is, “Hey, here are some really interesting people in cities they love!” essentially.
Right. Or cities they want to discover something about. If Ugly Delicious was using food almost as a Trojan horse to start talking about other things in culture. We're using food and travel in the same way — to talk about other things about the world or the guests.
That was part of the show from the beginning. Maybe there are different layers that we haven't looked at yet and, because this whole travel series is part of a genre that has been so well done, we really wanted to see if there were other ways to do it. And maybe that isn't from my perspective per se, but from the guest's perspective.
I've spent my whole career sharing places with people as a travel writer, but also balancing that with fear of over-tourism. You expressed some of that in the Seth episode. You've seen what happens when we blow up certain places. Is that something that you were wrestling with as you produced the series?
Yeah, that's something that Seth and I spoke about and I've always had reservations about shining the light on places that I love a lot, because — even if they're struggling and they need more business — I just always wanted to ask them “was it okay?” Are they aware that if we do this, things will change?
That said, almost every person... if you tell a business owner, “Hey, you're going to be busier.” Now, I don't know anyone that — outside of maybe a few restaurants in Japan — but for the most part, most restaurants are going to be like, “Yes, we welcome the traffic. That would be wonderful.”
I feel like the work that you've done is such a big part of the American palate evolving and expanding into flavors that had maybe been marginalized. Is that something that you associate with: helping this explosion of young people who are able to talk about food and also open to foods that they weren't raised with?
I don't know if I thought about it so specifically, other than it's just what I sort of had to grow up with and then obviously using professional cooking as a way to express myself and finding out that, “Oh my God, there are so many stories that haven't been told or maybe 'culinary truths' that are wrong.” Maybe the way I was trained to cook something was misinformed because someone else taught it incorrectly.
That was the genesis for me. I would think, “Hey, if I discovered that certain things, particularly in the food world, are actually wrong, then what other stories are?” I'm not the first person to do that. Obviously so many of these conversations about travel and food revolve around Tony [ Bourdain]. He wasn't the first one either, but he was the first one that obviously made it incredibly popular. For instance, he was an advocate of Latin American workers in restaurants in general — these voices that should hit mainstream culture but don't. And if we can use that in any way to sort of raise awareness, great. But do it in a way that's not prescriptive.
He allowed people to open the door and walk through it.
With you being close to him, what lessons did you pull from him in preparation to do a full-on travel show?
I just think it wasn't even TV show related lessons. It's just: “Be a good person,” right?
Yeah, he definitely embodied that.
That seems simple enough, but it's always more difficult in practice. He was also all about constantly growing and seeing different perspectives and understanding that your world is not the only world that matters. And that wasn't just for me, as his friend, it was obviously the same message for the world over — which is why I think he impacted so many people.
Tony as a person, as an individual — that was no different than Tony who you saw on TV or in his books. It's the same man: There's a sense of discovery, a sense of knowing thyself, and a sense of getting better. I don't know if I think about or the people that make the show think about it, per se, but it certainly that year of filming weighed heavy on me for sure. Because the last thing I ever wanted to do was to... it was just heavy. Going to Cambodia was really hard because that's something that I would imagine Tony doing.
We tried really hard to make sure that the show was different. It was respectful but intentionally different from Tony's shows and I think it's hard for me to articulate this because I don't know if it can ever come across clearly enough, but we only wanted to do it differently and, by doing it differently, that was our way of paying respect.
Finding your own way to tell the story in a sense becomes a way to honor your friend and the way that he did things.
When you see the modern travel movement and the modern food movement, do you feel like some of these issues are more democratized than ever? That people are more thoughtful about them than ever? We're dealing with some really heavy nationalistic issues in the United States. Some really heavy immigration issues in the United States. When you're out on the road and you're seeing people try new things does it give you some degree of hope?
Hope, yes. But not in the way you might be thinking. I think it's hope in a more realistic way that if people go out and they see the world, they're going to see that people have problems and struggles that are the same things that everyone experiences.
When you understand that you are not the most important person in the world or your city or your culture or whatever — that's how travel allows you to have a deeper well of empathy to understand how someone else might go through something and allows you to genuinely put yourself in those shoes. And I don't know how that doesn't make you a better person. Maybe not immediately, but I think it gives you the perspective that you didn't have before. And I think that's happening when people travel. I hope.
But the downside of that is people are only doing the same kinds of travel.
And that's a paradox that I don't know if I have an answer for. Because, you know, if I go to Japan for instance, I see all the same spots being hit by all the same tourists. I don't know if that's a good thing. There's something about getting lost and discovering your own sort of narrative wherever you're traveling. And that's one of the best parts about travel. The unknown.
There's also a lot of localism going on in certain parts of the country right now. And there are these conversations about over-tourism... how are you wrestling with all that?
I think it's almost like, I think about it like in food, we need to really celebrate why we travel. And it's got to be right. For instance, if I go to think about Cambodia — if this answers your question, let me know after the fact.
A lot of my close friends have gone to Cambodia, my wife has gone to Cambodia, but as a whole, and I'm sure you would agree most people are like, “Oh Thailand and Vietnam. Do you want to go to Cambodia?” “No...” Or like, “Oh yeah, I went there, but it's sort of like a bummer.”
And they were on holiday. They want to have a good time. But maybe the travel that needs to happen is not the touristy places, but seeing the different side of destinations. And that's one of the things I love most about Kate. Kate was like, “I want to know about the dance and that tradition.” And I was overjoyed because that summarizes Kate. It should to everyone. She is open to new stories and most importantly I think the travel should be about paying respect and taking the right things, not stealing, and if there needs to be a cap on things, fine.
That's a really difficult question. I just feel like if the world continues to be explored and there's nothing left to do and everything becomes a tourist trap, I think that's... it's more of a computer simulation, maybe not a real thing. I think that more and more people are following the same path and maybe it could be something local, but I think at the end of the day, wherever you are there's something to see.
I remember I used to tell my cooks when they talked about going to China, Japan, or Asia, I'd be like, “Well first, travel to Chinatown! Literally get an Aibnb and just stay there. There's so much to see! Learn about the food there for two weeks first.”
There is so much to see in this world, it's hard to imagine that any one person is going to 'run out.'
The term “action movie” runs the spectrum of CGI explosion-filled spectacles and highly choreographed fight scenes to movies with heroes who deliver cheesy one-liners right before the last rocket-powered grenade is fired. It can mean shutting your brain off, or it can mean complex stories that use action to benefit the plot.
Luckily, Netflix has most subgenres covered when it comes to good action films, whether you want kung fu, superhero-ing, or anything in between. Here are the 20 best action movies on Netflix streaming right now, so grab some popcorn and enjoy.
Related: The Best Sci-Fi Movies On Netflix Right Now
Warner Bro 1. The Matrix 1999
Run Time: 136 min | IMDb: 8.7/10 The Wachowskis created one of the greatest sci-fi films in cinematic history with their mind-bending Matrix trilogy, but the original is hard to top. Keanu Reeves plays Neo, a young man unplugged from the matrix — a kind of alternate reality that keeps humans docile, so machines can harvest their life energy. He teams up with a band of rebels fighting the machines Laurence Fishburne as Morpheus and Carrie-Ann Moss as Trinity and faces off against a henchman named Agent Smith Hugo Weaving. The real draw of this trilogy, besides its inventive storyline, is the CGI display. The movie also sports some of the most imaginative fight sequences you'll ever see on the big screen.
Sony 2. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2000
Run Time: 120 min | IMDb: 7.9/10
Ang Lee's Oscar-winning martial arts flick defied the odds to become one of the most influential films in the genre, crossing multicultural barriers and introducing audiences to some great talents in the international acting world. The film follows the story of Li Mu Bai, an accomplished Wudang swordsman who retires his legendary weapon only to be pulled back into a battle with his arch-nemesis, a woman who killed his master years earlier and seeks to claim his sword for her own. There's more happening plot-wise — Bai has a love interest in another skilled warrior, Yu Shu Lien, and they're both forced to face off against a Wudang prodigy that's been studying under their enemy — but the real draw here is the perfectly-mapped-out fight sequences, which include just enough special effect to be awe-inducing, but not too much to distract from the beautiful choreography that Lee puts on display.
AMC 3. Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse 2018
Run Time: 117 min | IMDb: 8.5/10
The Oscar-winning animated film is making its way to Netflix this summer, which means if you didn't get a chance to see it in theaters, you no longer have to wonder what all the hype is about. The story follows a young kid named Miles, who becomes the web-slinging hero of his reality, only to cross paths with other iterations of Spider-Man across different dimensions that help him defeat a threat posed to all realities. Mahershala Ali, John Mulaney, and Jake Johnson make up the film's talented voice cast, but it's the striking visuals and daring story-telling technique that really serves the film well.
Columbia 4. Black Hawk Down 2001
Run Time: 144 min | IMDb: 7.7/10
Ridley Scott's 2001 war drama boasts an impressive ensemble cast and a gripping true story, two essentials to any great war film. Josh Hartnett, Eric Bana, Ewan McGregor, Tom Hardy, Tom Sizemore, Sam Shephard, and a host of other A-listers star in this re-telling of the infamous Battle of Mogadishu, a 1993 raid by U.S. troops in Somalia that ended in tragedy. The objective of the mission was to capture a rebel leader responsible for inciting violence and genocide in the country. The film details all of the unfortunate circumstances that led to U.S. troops being pinned down in a remote village in Somalia, being forced to fight for their lives without backup, and ultimately, causing the U.S. government to decide to pull troops from the area. Hartnett gives a credible leading man performance as the young officer in charge of his first command, and the film finds its footing when it focuses on its main characters — men trying to survive in a hostile environment despite impossible odds.
Marvel/Disney 5. Black Panther 2018
Run Time: 134 min, IMDb: 7.4/10
Ryan Coogler's superhero flick revolutionized the Marvel Universe when it landed earlier this year, so it's only right that we're given the option to watch it over and over again. The film gives us a fully-realized, otherworldly Wakanda as it follows the trials and tribulations of a newly-minted king, T'Challa Chadwick Boseman. While trying to govern his people and embrace is Black Panther alter-ego, he's also got to fight off a would-be usurper in Michael B. Jordan's Erik Killmonger, who may just be the best villain Marvel has ever seen. And Coogler gives the women plenty to do in this as well with the Dora Milaje — T'Challa's all-female guard — and Lupita Nyong'o's badass spy getting ample screen time.
Columbia TriStar 6. Lock, Stock, And Two Smoking Barrels 1998
Run Time: 107 min | IMDb: 8.2/10
Guy Ritchie and Matthew Vaughn pair up for this British comedy about a group of friends who become entangled in a turf war of sorts after a card game gone wrong. Eddy Nick Moran is a card shark who buys into a high-stake game hosted by a mob boss named Harry. The game is rigged, and Eddy and his friends soon owe hundreds of thousands of dollars to the gang. To score the cash, they decide to rob a rival gang, who in turn have stolen money and weed from some local cannabis suppliers. Eventually, all of this thieving leads to shootouts and brawls over money, drugs, and two antique shotguns. Ritchie put himself and Jason Statham on the map with this one, patenting a fast-action, quick-witted type of storytelling that works well here and is a hell of a lot of fun to watch.
Radius-TWC 7. Snowpiercer 2013
Run Time: 126 min, IMDb: 7.1/10
Chris Evans stars in this sci-fi thriller from auteur Bong Joon-ho. The film, set years into the future following a devastating ice age caused by mankind, follows Evans' Curtis who lives in poverty on a train that continuously circles the Earth and contains all that remains of human life. Curtis is part of the “scum” that the people relegated to the back of the train while the “elite” enjoy the privilege of wealth and status that comes with living in the front. Curtis sparks a rebellion that ends in bloodshed and a devastating reveal when he makes it to the train's engine room and discovers just how the elite have been fueling their operation. It's a dark, grimy action piece that should give fans a new appreciation for Evans' talent.
Marvel 8. Thor: Ragnarok 2017
Run Time: 130 min | IMDb: 7.9/10
Before Black Panther became one of the highest grossing films in the Marvel Universe, Chris Hemsworth's hammer-loving hero gave the superhero franchise a much-needed dose of humor and fun with Thor: Ragnarok. Directed by Taika Waititi, the film follows the Asgardian warrior as he tries to save his home from the brutal reign of his long-lost sister Hela a wickedly good Cate Blanchett and fight his way out of off-planet gladiator pits with the help of the Hulk Mark Ruffalo and a Valkyrie played by Tessa Thompson.
Sony 9. Kung Fu Hustle 2004
Run Time: 99 min | IMDb: 7.8/10
The early aughts action-comedy borrows elements from famous Kung Fu films of the '70s and pairs them with a completely ridiculous plot and some impressive cartoon-style fight sequences to produce a wholly original flick that we guarantee you'll marvel at. The film follows the exploits of two friends, Sing and Bone, who impersonate gang members in the hopes of joining a gang themselves and inadvertently strike up a gang war that nearly destroys the slums of the city. Of course, the real draw here is the absurdist, over-the-top comedy that takes place during some of the film's biggest action sequences. It's laugh-out-loud funny, but only if you check your brain at the door.
Miramax 10. Sin City 2005
Run Time: 124 min | IMDb: 8/10
Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez team up for this stylish crime thriller drowning in corruption, comic book references, and A-list actors playing varying degrees of anti-hero. Based on the first, third, and fourth books in Miller's original series, the film jumps between three different stories all set in the seedy underworld of Basin City. Bruce Willis plays an aging police officer framed for crimes he didn't commit and who must protect a young woman he's come to love. Clive Owen plays a vigilante who protects prostitutes from bad guys. And Mickey Rourke plays a man seeking revenge for the death of his lover. It's a lot of action and bloodshed, all done in Miller's signature tone and Rodriguez' recognizable flair.
Weinstein Company 11. Inglourious Basterds 2009
Run Time: 153 min | IMDb: 8.3/10
Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger, Christoph Waltz, and Eli Roth star in Quentin Tarantino's imaginative World War II drama about a group of Jewish U.S. soldiers with a plan to assassinate Hitler. The film flip-flops between Pitt's Southern-accented Lt. Aldo Raine's mission to scalp Nazis and blow-up an exclusive event for SS officers in Paris and French actress Melanie Laurent, who plays a theater-owner with a devious plan of her own. It's full of mesmerizing performances and Tarantino's unique brand of humor — oh, and a lot of Nazi killing.
Universal Pictures 12. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World 2010
Run Time: 112 min | IMDb: 7.5/10
Edgar Wright's 2010 action comedy about a hapless boy, who must defeat evil ex-boyfriends in order to win the hand of the girl he loves, is a fast-paced ride that bombards the senses. Michael Cera plays a loveable goof in the titular hero, a young man enamored with a woman named Ramona Flowers Mary Elizabeth Winstead. In order to be with his lady love, Scott takes on her exes six guys, one girl that challenge him to truly strange contests. The film is a cinematic mash-up of Japanese anime and gamer culture, intended for the crowd who grew up on Nintendo and comic books, but it brings plenty of overall laughs all the same.
FilmDistrict 13. Olympus Has Fallen 2013
Run Time: 119 min | IMDb: 6.5/10
Gerard Butler proves he's still got it playing Mike Banning, a disgraced Secret Service agent who's pulled back in the fold when a terrorist attack on the White House puts the president's life in danger. Aaron Eckhart plays the Commander-in-Chief, who can also kick a surprising amount of butt, but most of the heroics are saved for Butler's Banning, who uses his inside knowledge of the White House to foil a highly-organized raid by a group of trained killers looking to set off America's nukes.
Paramount 14. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade 1989
Run Time: 127 min | IMDb: 8.2/10
Set fives years after Temple of Doom, The Last Crusade marks Indiana Jones' journey to rescue and reunite with his estranged father, a historian who goes missing after searching for the Holy Grail. Harrison Ford returns to play the swashbuckling archeologist while Sean Connery — most famous for his role as James Bond at the time — plays Indy's absentee father. Most of the fun in this film can be chalked up to the pair's chemistry. Indy and his dad don't get along and their bickering, even as they're avoiding assassins and tracking down ancient relics, is played up for laughs, rightly so.
Disney/Lucasfilm 15. Star Wars: The Last Jedi 2017
Run Time: 152 min, IMDb: 7.3/10
There's always going to be backlash when a studio decides to revive a beloved franchise and take it in a new direction but The Last Jedi continues to anger space fanboys everywhere and honestly, we're not sure what their gripe is. Rian Johnson gave us a masterclass in how to take something old and make it new again with his interpretation, injecting a bit of fun and fantasy into the age-old story. Mindblowing Jedi fights, Force connections, Porg, and Artic Foxes, the movie has something for everyone and it challenges both old and new characters alike with interesting arcs and climactic moments. Plus, did we mention Porgs?
Columbia 16. Bad Boys 1995
Run Time: 119 min | IMDb: 6.9/10
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence star in this foul-mouthed buddy comedy film as two detectives tasked with protecting a witness while investigating a case of stolen heroin from their own precinct's evidence storage facility. Marcus Lawrence and Mike Smith have been friends since childhood and are now working the beat together in Miami. When $100 million of heroin goes missing from their unit's storage facility, they're sent to track down who might have taken it before Internal Affairs intercedes. Smith and Lawrence have an easy, lived-in chemistry that really sells this thing, and the action's not too bad either.
Columbia 17. Hellboy 2004
Run Time: 122 min | IMDb: 6.9/10
Sure, Stranger Things star David Harbour is about to make the Hellboy franchise cool again, but before the Internet's sweetheart dons the horns and the fist, why not revisit this masterpiece starring Ron Perlman? Not only does Perlman easily sell a devil-may-care attitude while he's hammering bad guys in the face, battling Russian sorcerers, killing Nazis, and tangling with tentacled behemoths, but Guillermo del Toro directs this thing, which means the visuals are just as spell-binding as the action.
Mandarin Films 18. Ip Man 2008
Run Time: 106 min | IMDb: 8/10
In a town filled with aspiring martial artists, the best of the best is Ip Man, a father and husband who just wants to keep his quiet way of life even in the midst of the Japanese occupation of China. In discovering that sometimes fighting is the only way to keep the peace, Ip inspires many by taking a stand during war-torn times. As a subtle reflection on war mixed with a healthy dose of fast-paced, mesmerizing combat, Ip Man is actually based on the real life of Yip Man, the grand master who trained Bruce Lee.
Miramax Films 19. Equilibrium 2002
Run Time: 107 min | IMDb: 7.5/10
Christian Bale and Season Bean star in this Sci-Fi drama set in an oppressive future where all forms of emotion are outlawed. Bale plays a man named John Preston, who's charged with enforcing the law but when he accidentally forgets to take a dose of the medicine that suppresses feelings and artistic expression, he begins to question the system he upholds and eventually, leads an uprising.
Columbia 20. xXx 2002
Run Time: 124 min | IMDb: 5.9/10
Vin Diesel takes a break from jacking cars to play extreme-sports junkie Xander Cage in this action thriller with Samuel L. Jackson. Cage is recruited by the NSA to take down a Russian terrorist group planning to unleash a chemical weapon on major cities around the world. In exchange for clearing his criminal record, Cage spies on the group, learning their plans while performing some death-defying stunts. Diesel is the quintessential action man in this one, hooking up with girls, kicking a**, and saving the world, but the fight scenes and action sequences are just inventive enough to keep you interested.
Recent Changes Through October 2019: Removed: April And The Extraordinary World Added: Sin City