Netflix never ceases to amaze us with its incredible selection of the world’s best—and most God-f*cking-awful—programming. Standup comedy, quirky cartoons, top-tier movies, classics, and even programming of its own, the digital pseudo-network is revolutionizing the way people watch TV.
Every month Netflix releases a ton of new programming for its loyal subscribers. And while a solid chunk of it is usually complete trash, there are always a few legitimate gems in there.
Don’t feel like churning through all that fecal matter? No problem. Here’s the short list of must-watch stuff coming to Netflix in the month of January:
Journey to Le Mans
Le Mans is perhaps the most challenging and rigorous endurance competition in all of automobile racing. The world’s oldest sports car race, it is considered an honor and privilege to compete in the 24-hour marathon. Journey to Le Mans tells the story of British Privateer Team Jota Sport on their road to compete in the race. The film is inspiring and real, and definitely worthy of your attention, even if car racing isn’t your thing.
What’s to be said about this 2001 American classic, starring Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawk? Action, drugs, corrupt government officials, crippled Snoop Dogg—this crime thriller really has it all.
Hey! Remember when John Travolta was an actor—and a half-decent one, at that?! One of Travolta’s [arguably] greatest films, Swordfish, is the tech-nerd’s dream movie. A former computer hacktivist gets conned into participating in a highly lucrative bank robbery conspiracy, which gets pretty violent. Plus, Halle Berry’s boobs make a cameo… So at least there’s that!
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season 10
If it’s wholesome programming interwoven with intelligence and grace you seek, look far, far away from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, an American sitcom starring three people who should probably be locked away deep, deep in a psych ward somewhere. The series follows the ridiculous and hilarious real-life occurrences of “The Gang,” as they—against all odds—survive even their most harebrained of schemes.
Tom Segura: Mostly Stories
One of the most exciting entries on this list, the new standup special from American comedy man Tom Segura, Mostly Stories, also makes its debut exclusively on Netflix in January. Segura’s matter-of-fact, deadpan humor, chaotic in its content but completely restrained in its delivery, is just perfect. We describe it as “dumb comedy for intelligent people,” but if you don’t believe us, feel free to check out his first special, Tom Segura: Completely Normal available to stream now.
Fans of the Netflix original Narcos may find this well-executed crime thriller appealing for its interesting plot line: Rosario Tijeras is a babely hit woman for hire who works for lower level drug lords in the slums of Medellin, Colombia, in the late 1980s. The movie, given from the flashback perspective of her friend, confidante, and lover Antonio, tells the story of Rosario, the murder of her brother, Jonhefe, her submergence in the Medellin underground and her attempts to make it out of “la vida” alive. Sex, drugs, and rock and roll—with English subtitles, of course.
Un Oso Rojo
Oso is sent to prison for robbery and murder, and serves 7 years in the pen, in this critically acclaimed Spanish crime drama. Upon his release, Oso, a reformed man, returns to his home in Bueno Aires, where he tries to reconnect with his estranged daughter, Alicia. Of course, things go awry, and Oso’s former love and mother of his daughter has found a new boyfriend, who, by the way, is unemployed and gambles away what little money he acquires. A local drug lord agrees to squash the debt the new boyfriend owes if Oso agrees to be the getaway driver for one last job. Not exactly a quaint coming-of-age flick for a Wednesday Netflix-and-chill session.
“Hilarious,” “intelligent,” and “groovy” are all words we’d use to describe Moonwalkers, an independent comedy starring Sons of Anarchy veteran Ron Perlman and the guy who played Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter movies, about the CIA’s plot to have famed sci-fi director Stanley Kubrick fake the 1969 moon landing. We loved the period-correct set and style design, and give a ton of bonus points to the solid writing. It’s just great.
Z Nation: Season 2
Have you watched all 5 seasons of The Walking Dead on Netflix, but still can’t get your proper dosage of daily zombie apocalypse? If you haven’t already heard, Z Nation is a pretty popular alternative. Just renewed for its third season, this comedy-slash-horror-slash-post-apocalyptic-fun-fest begins three years into the zombie apocalypse, where most of the world’s population has already been killed off by the virus and its flesh-eating benefactors. It follows a group of people trying to transport Murphy, the only known survivor of a zombie bite, from New York to California (the last-known functioning research lab in the world). For a relatively low-budget production, we were pretty stunned by the well-rounded cast of Hollywood somebodies.
This terrifying tell-all about the connection between video games and the CIA’s ever-expanding drone program will make you reconsider the entertainment industry’s role in our everyday lives, as it becomes clear that the popular and controversial use of drones in warfare is far less cut-and-dry than most people believe.