Witchdoctor kicks and lunges its way through the televisual glut to find the most interesting viewing choices.
TV Shows –
Already showing –
If you missed Marvel’s most idiosyncratic and trippy series, Legion, during its stay on Neon, then luck is on your table tonight. All three seasons are available now on Disney+ and Witchdoctor urges you to check ‘em out! Made between 2017 and 2019, the show stars Dan Stevens as a young schizophrenic who believes he has superpowers. Does he, or is it all in his imagination? Find out!
Those of us with aspirations towards phenomenal success in business start-ups will possibly want to watch Super Pumped (Neon) despite its middling critical reception. The true story of Uber sees Joseph Gordon-Levitt as former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, and it’s his perspective we get on the business.
Who wasn’t bored shitless by the Series 6 of Vikings? Well, we’ve got a soft spot for this stuff because rumour has it that Witchdoctor staff have Nordic blood! Vikings Valhalla (Netflix) is a sequel that’s set at the tail end of the Viking conquests and, well… you know what to expect.
Trust (Disney+) is a 10-episode programme telling the true story of the abduction of one of the world’s richest men, John Paul Getty III. Well-received, the series features actors of the calibre of Donald Sutherland and Hilary Swank. Worth a quick dip, we reckon.
Another series based on a real story – this time medical fraudster Elizabeth Holmes – The Dropout (Disney+) strikes us as a rather icky character to pick apart. Oh well, there’s some solid talent on board this hot-off-the-presses show including the likes of actors William H. Macy and Stephen Fry, and it may just shine a light on one of the most bizarre stories of belief over the facts in modern times.
Another brand new series, Our Flag Means Death (Neon) is one of the hottest propositions to hit TV-land this month, even if details about it are a little on the sketchy side. Apparently it’s sort-of about an aristocrat his gives up his land-lubbin’ ways to become a pirate, and the pilot episode is directed by Taika Waititi, who also makes a guest appearance alongside the likes of Rhys Darby as the gentleman pirate.
Old boomers who admired the philosophical nature of Star Trek: The Next Generation in the 1980s and the clear Queen’s diction of Patrick Stewart as Captain Picard will probably have already sunk their teeth into the well-received first season of Star Trek: Picard (Prime Video). Here’s the second instalment!
7 March –
Anne (Acorn) tells the true story of Anne Williams, whose 15-year-old son was crushed to death at the 1989 FA Cup Final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest. Anne, played by Maxine Peake, fights for justice for the 96 people who lost their lives in this riveting miniseries.
9 March –
Last year Disney+ had The Velvet Underground (Andy Warhol’s pet band) and now, Netflix has The Andy Warhol Diaries (Netflix), an AI-voice assisted documentary series about the pop-art legend. “After he’s shot in 1968, Andy Warhol begins documenting his life and feelings. Those diaries, and this docuseries, take a peek behind his persona.”
14 March –
Described as Nordic noir meets sunny Mediterranean, in The Paradise (Acorn) a Finnish detective travels to Spain to solve a complex murder mystery.
16 March –
Big meat eaters are going to love this one. Bad Vegan: Fame. Fraud. Fugitives (Netflix) is a sensational four-part documentary series by the director of Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened that explores the bizarre story of former celebrity restaurateur Sarma Melngailis. Simply astonishing, it seems.
22 March –
Here you go guys, now’s your chance to skill up on what turns the old lady on. The Principles Of Pleasure (Netflix) is a documentary series that “celebrates the complex world of women’s pleasure – and puts stubborn myths to rest.” (Next: the male version. Trouble is, it’s only 1-minute long!)
25 March –
We’re not so sure about Bridgerton (Netflix) here at Witchdoctor but the first series was the most-watched programme on Netflix, so if you can’t fight ‘em, pretend to join ‘em! Series 2 of this period drama will no doubt be eagerly anticipated.
30 March –
Nicola Walker stars as a Norwegian DI based in Scotland in Annika (Neon), a new cop series in which the dynamic between Annika and her teenage daughter, Morgan (Sylvie Furneaux), is an ongoing theme. Bad accents notwithstanding (at least, according to The Guardian), this is a damn good piece of televisual entertainment, apparently.
Who knows what the sixth TV series in the Marvel universe will be like, but regardless, Marvel fans will be clustering expectantly around their TVs, tablets and smartphones for the debut of the six-part mini-series Moon Knight (Disney+) starring Oscar Isaac as a mercenary who suffers from dissociative identity disorder. Sounds promising!
Already showing –
Against The Ice (Netflix) is based on the true story of Denmark’s 1909 polar expedition, wherein two men exploring Greenland’s vast landscape for a lost map must fight to survive. Sounds like a ripping (if frigid) tale.
If you’re in the mood for some nail-biting, then No Exit (Disney+) could fulfil the need to be frightened out of your gourd. This new thriller stars Havana Rose Liu as a young woman who gets stranded in a blizzard with some very shonky characters.
Fans of westerns will want to see The Kid (Disney+) despite poor to middling reviews. Another variation on ye olde Pat Garrett and Billy The Kid stories, the 2019 film stars Ethan Hawke as Pat Garrett.
Angelina Jolie fans will doubtless be up for 2021 film Those Who Wish Me Dead (Neon) despite what seems like a rather ludicrous scenario, in with Jolie (playing a firefighter) has to deal with, well… fire, while keeping a wee lad safe from evil assassins. Could be amusing…
Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins (Neon) is the kind of mega-action bomb that Witchdoctor loves. This G.I. Joe reboot/origin story fuses our hero with, um… Japanese Ninja skills, and it’s all too silly. Watch it for free on streaming TV and you’ll have a good laugh without feeling ripped off.
The King’s Man (Neon) is the third instalment (and a prequel) in the spy action movie franchise based on a comic book. Starring Ralph Fiennes as a spy network leader, the film was released in December last year to fairly negative reviews, which means that it’s probably really entertaining, in a dumb kind of way.
Just what we need in these trying (and worrying) times is a new version of this celebrated musical. Directed by Stephen Spielberg and – like the original 1957 version – featuring the songs of the Bernstein/Sondheim partnership, West Side Story (Disney+) has got more Academy Award nominations than you could shake a stick at and therefore, is a must-see.
Notturno (DocPlay) is “an achingly poetic, humane meditation on life in the shadow of war and the Islamic State…” Gianfranco Rosi’s story captures everyday life in the aftermath of war, “following people living along the border that separates life from hell.”
Pieces Of Her (Netflix) is a new mystery thriller series that looks like a quite compelling proposition. Based on the New York Times bestseller and starring Toni Collette and Bella Heathcoate. If you’ve ever really wondered who your mother really is, then this is for you!
Described as a darkly comic thriller, Fresh (Disney+) stars Daisy Edgar-Jones as a young woman whose new boyfriend harbours a terrifying secret. We’re not sure what to make of its description but we’re intrigued enough to find out!
I can imagine conservative Christian subscribers to Disney+ being up in arms about AKA Jane Roe, a documentary filmed in the last year of the life of former pro-abortionist legend Norma McCorvey, who has some shocking admissions to make. This one is bound to be a fascinating watch.
Watch the trailer for Made In Italy (Neon) and you know exactly what you’re going to get – a heart-warming tragi-comedy with solid performances by the likes of Liam Neeson and loads of romantic shots of Tuscany. Take that as a warning or a recommendation, depending on your predisposition.
Mubi is celebrating the work of Paolo Pasolini this month and La Ricotta (Mubi) is but one of the legendary director’s films that our favourite art film platform is streaming. This short film is considered “the height of Pasolini’s creative powers and social criticism.”
7 March –
Disney is such a huge franchise now that it’s hard to imagine it being originally the work of one man. Walt Disney (DocPlay… not Disney+, natch!) unravels the life and legacy of the genius enigma in this intimate biography.
From genius animators to genius writers, Hemingway (DocPlay) is a new documentary that examines the visionary work and turbulent life of Ernest Hemingway, one of the most influential writers the world has ever produced.
9 March –
Guillermo del Toro. That name should be recommendation enough. Nightmare Alley (Disney+) is the great director’s 2021 neo-noir psychological thriller based on a 1946 novel that has been described as “a study of the lowest depths of showbiz and its sleazy inhabitants.” An all-star cast including Cate Blanchett, Toni Collette and Willem Dafoe make it even more of a compelling couch movie date.
11 March –
Don’t know about you, but we’re always scouring the streaming services to find another film or TV series that will captivate the wee monsters. Turning Red (Disney+) – an animated film about a Canadian kid who turns into a red panda – looks to be the best bet this month.
Here’s a documentary with a difference. A Song Called Hate (iWonder) is a 2019 film about Hatari, an outrageous Icelandic group – described as a “satirical anti-capitalist, BDSM techno band” – performing in the Eurovision competition.
We all have nights where we just need some sentimental entertainment and some whizz-bang SFX to go with the potato chips. The Adam Project (Netflix) seems to fit the bill. “After accidentally crash-landing in 2022, time-traveling fighter pilot Adam Reed teams up with his 12-year-old self on a mission to save the future.” Directed by Shawn Levy of the Night At The Museum series. Just leave your brain at the door.
17 March –
It might be terrible but Soil (Netflix) is worth taking a punt on, given both its exotic locale and intriguing comedic potential. In short, “to revamp the family business, a young entrepreneur sets up a bold yet risky plan of importing soil from Morocco to bury his community’s deceased.” What a hoot!
18 March –
If you’re titillated by the idea of a film from the director of Fatal Attraction, Indecent Proposal and 9-1/2 Weeks, then Deep Water (Prime Video) should yank your crank. Based on the Patricia Highsmith novel and starring Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas as a bored couple playing deadly games, it’ll no doubt have a captive audience.
Ann Hui – recent winner of the Venice Golden Lion For Lifetime Achievement Award – creates a visually stunning, sprawling melodrama on sexual freedom, transgression and fractured identities in pre-World War II Hong Kong in her 2020 film Love After Love (Mubi). Music by Witchdoctor favourite Ryuichi Sakamoto.
For those few who haven’t had enough of the current real-life end-of-world vibes, Black Crab (Netflix) looks like a compelling Swedish film. “To end an apocalyptic war and save her daughter, a reluctant soldier embarks on a desperate mission to cross a frozen sea carrying a top-secret cargo.” All the right ingredients, then. Brrr!
19 March –
Here’s one for those who love beautifully and intricately designed cinema. The French Dispatch (Neon) is a Wes Anderson anthology featuring filmic adaptations of the four stories in the final issue of a magazine. Described as a comedy-drama, there’s some fabulous acting talent (Adrien Brody, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson) in this unusual film.
20 March –
The Rising (Neon) will appeal to fans of supernatural thrillers. Neve (Clara Rugaard) is dead, but she’s determined to solve her own murder. Sounds kind of silly but the trailer suggests that it’s skilfully stage-managed and highly watchable, even if ghosts aren’t real.
25 March –
These days, M. Night Shyamalan can’t seem to make a movie that the critics like, but his latest, Old (Neon) still roped in the punters despite what would seem to be a ludicrous plot. In short, a family takes a vacation to a beach that, um… has a tendency to prematurely age its inhabitants. Oddness abounds.
If you missed it at the cinema, then set your calendar for March 30. That’s when the latest Bond film, No Time To Die (Prime Video) makes it to streaming TV.
30 March –
Zero Fucks Given (Mubi) kind of deserves to have a captive audience just for its audacious title. This 2021 starring a non-professional cast of actual flight attendants crafts “a vulnerable, sensitive study on grief and the Instagram-worthy lifestyle” in a tale of 26-year-old “airline hostess Cassandre who lives one day at a time and parties without a care for tomorrow.”