Thursday, April 2, 2015

Netflix '80s Fix: This Is Twins Driving Miss Daisy In A Different World

April is here and Netflix is not fooling around with the new '80s titles now available on it's streaming service. Although this month's selection doesn't compare to some of the blockbusters we received last month, several critically acclaimed movies are now available to add to your queue. Plus, we've finally got a a couple new TV shows that are worthy of rediscovering!

This month's fix includes a new 80s Pop Twenty countdown and a recommendation for newly-added film that just missed the decade. Also among this month's list is a 2014 documentary about Atari that you shouldn't miss. It's time to get your fix!



This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
Rated R Add to queue
Rob Reiner's cult satire about a fictional heavy metal group named Spinal Tap spoofs nearly every facet of rock 'n' roll -- from vacuous modern songwriting and half-baked album promos to over-the-top pyrotechnic-filled concerts.

I saw this movie very late, probably sometime in the '90s on cable. I won't take anything away from it's cult classic status, but I personally never connected with it as some people have. It's still a funny movie with many quotable lines used to this day.



Twins (1988)
Rated PG Add to queue
When he discovers that he has a twin he never knew existed, the studious Julius Benedict (Arnold Schwarzenegger) sets out to find his long-lost sibling and is shocked to discover that his brother is a diminutive petty crook (Danny DeVito). Kelly Preston, Tom McCleister and David Caruso also star in this hilarious 1988 laffer from veteran comedy director Ivan Reitman (Ghostbusters, Kindergarten Cop).

I vividly remember watching this in the theater and thoroughly enjoying the movie. I know I had seen a couple cable-edited Schwarzenegger movies by this point in my life, but I know this was the first time I had watched him on the big screen. A lasting experience.



Driving Miss Daisy (1989)
Rated PG Add to queue
After wealthy and strong-willed Atlanta widow Miss Daisy Werthan crashes her car, her son insists she hire a chauffeur. Miss Daisy's stubborn reluctance gives way as she slowly warms up to her new driver and the two strike up an enduring friendship.

I watched this movie on cable several years ago, but definitely one I haven't watched nearly enough to truly appreciate it's Oscar-winning heritage.



A Different World (1987-93)
Rated NR Add to queue
A spin-off of "The Cosby Show," this sitcom set at the fictional Hillman College launched with Lisa Bonet reprising her role as Denise Huxtable. By the time Bonet left the show in the second season, the solid cast had come into its own. Standouts include Kadeem Hardison as the irrepressible Dwayne Wayne, Jasmine Guy as snooty Whitley Gilbert, Dawnn Lewis as divorced older student Jaleesa Vinson and stand-up comedian Sinbad as coach Walter Oakes.

I LOVED this show and it probably gave me my first concept of college. Denise was probably my least favorite character on The Cosby Show, but the cast around her was what really made the show so great. It also propelled me into watching the stand-up comedy specials of Sinbad released in the '90s.



Atari: Game Over (2014)
Rated NR Add to queue
Explore the demise of gaming giant Atari, along with claims that it hid its biggest flop, 1982's "E.T.," by burying the cartridges in the desert.

Of course this is not an '80s movie but I'd highly recommend it to video game fans. It's actually fresh on my mind as I just watched it last night. To me, it was a big piece of the puzzle surrounding Atari's collapse in the mid '80s and confirmed the position I've taken that E.T., while not the greatest game, wasn't the sole reason for the company's downfall. The biggest eye-opening moment was the work environment surrounding the engineers at Atari. Note that there is strong language used during the film, but if that isn't bothersome, it's definitely worth your time.



Nine To Five (1980)
Rated PG Add to queue
Three women fed up with their "sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot" of a boss entertain fantasies about revenge. But fantasy turns into reality when they think they've inadvertently poisoned Mr. Hart's coffee and try to cover their tracks.

I definitely know the theme song better than the film as I can't even be sure I've ever watched the entire movie.



New adds this month also include the action films Death Wish 2, Enter the Ninja, and American Ninja 2. Sci-Fi films include Star Trek V: The Final Frontier and The Dead Zone. If horror is your style, Cujo and My Bloody Valentine are now available. Plus don't miss the Oscar-winning Amadeus and Adam Sandler's film debut in Going Overboard. Plus, all 11 seasons of the popular medical dramedy M*A*S*H are also available.


'80s Pop Twenty
Here are the 20 most popular '80s movies and shows currently available on Netflix and their location on the previous month's countdown. I think the only way Roger Rabbit gets dethroned will be if it's removed from streaming. And speaking of, several popular films were removed leaving open spaces for new films.

  1. Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (11th consecutive month)
  2. Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (no change)
  3. Ferris Bueller's Day Off (+2)
  4. Manhunter (+2)
  5. The Thin Blue Line (+3)
  6. Day of the Dead (+5)
  7. Trading Places (+3)
  8. Romancing the Stone (+4)
  9. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (+4)
  10. The Cook, Thief, His Wife and Her Lover (+4)
  11. Heathers (+4)
  12. Labyrinth (+4)
  13. The Fox and the Hound (+4)
  14. Stand By Me (+4)
  15. The Dark Crystal (+4)
  16. Pee-Wee's Playhouse (new)
  17. Eddie Murphy: Delirious (new)
  18. Planes, Trains, & Automobiles (new)
  19. The Great Mouse Detective (new)
  20. The Muppets Take Mahattan (new)
Just missed...
Here's a movie that just missed the '80s that is newly available.


Glengarry GlenRoss (1992)

Rated R Add to queue
Jack Lemmon, Al Pacino, Ed Harris and Alan Arkin chew the words of David Mamet's script (based on his own stage play) as a group of Chicago real estate salesmen vying for the best "leads" at a small firm that sells property in resort areas.
So many big name actors in this film and that's really the attraction for me rather than the actual story itself. If you've been in the cutthroat industry of commission sales, its really compelling much like the more recent film The Boiler Room which I really enjoy as well.



If you've missed a previous month's post, check the Netflix '80s Fix archive. Some featured titles could still be available to stream. Also, feel free to comment with any movies or shows you've recently rediscovered.

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