Watch List Weekly Recap 4/14/23

An Argentinian classic, a fine new film about art and artists, and 12 movies to make your Netflix subscription worthwhile.

Watch List Weekly Recap 4/14/23

This is the Friday recap of Ty Burr’s Watch List postings for the week. If you’d like to cut down on in-box clutter and receive this weekly email ONLY, please go to your account page and under “Email notifications” uncheck every box except “Weekly Digest.” If you’d prefer to not receive it at all, uncheck just “Weekly Digest.”

I put the word out on Monday to paid subscribers about a fascinating Argentinian classic, “Prisioneros de la Tierra,” that was screening online this week in a restored version courtesy of Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation. If you missed that window, the movie’s available in DVD as part of Martin Scorsese’s World Cinema Project, Volume 4, available on Amazon or at better libraries near you.

Tonight Only: "Prisioneros De La Terra"
A quick heads up for paid subscribers: A restored print of the excellent Argentinian melodrama “Prisioneros De La Terra” (⭐⭐⭐⭐, 1939) was made available this past Saturday in a 72-hour online window courtesy of Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation, which means you can watch it until midnight tonight (Monday 4/10). If you can clear your schedule, there’s a

Substack rolled out a social media platform called Notes on Tuesday; it bids fair to become a gentler version of Twitter while letting a lot of great writers and engaged readers swap ideas. Give it a try if you’d like.

Join me on Notes
To my readers: Do we really need another social media platform? I’m not entirely sure, but faithful followers of the Watch List know my feelings about Twitter’s de-evolution under Der Muskmeister, and the launching of Notes, Substack’s entry into the space, has the benefit of annoying Elon while also being writer-driven and therefore hopefully less gramm…

For paid subscribers, a mid-week movie round-up and the latest in my eternal search for a decent film on Netflix. I came up with 12 this time, including the wonderful 2001 Bollywood epic “Lagaan” (above).

12 Good Movies on Netflix Right Now
Regular readers of the Watch List know my opinion of Netflix’s movie offerings: A mountain of uncurated junk within which are about 150 films that are watchable and maybe half that many that are actually good. But since it’s the one service everyone has (although I increasingly wonder why), I consider it my occasional duty to point you to the gems among the dross. Here are a dozen titles currently playing the service that you may or may not have heard of but that you’ll most likely enjoy.

For the Friday New Release report, I spent some time mulling Kelly Reichardt’s luminous “Showing Up” (⭐⭐⭐1/2) and the pleasures of movies that steep audiences in present-tense presence. Plus: Short reviews of “Hilma,” “Tori & Lokita,” “Mafia Mamma,” and more.

What to Watch: Present, Tense
One of the great magic tricks of the movies is to seduce us into an imagined present. In the actual present, we’re sitting in a movie theater eating Junior Mints or skootched back on the TV room couch at home, but all that drops away when the story is good and the characters seem real and an onscreen world built from edi…

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