Best Netflix UK Movies and TV Shows - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The Hobbit, Russian Doll and More
While undoubtedly one of the kings of video streaming, Netflix still has competition to face. Amazon Prime, for one, has a huge selection of movies and shows, including some of its own original programming. And recently Disney+, while not actually operational yet, is looking to be another major player, with both Disney-made content and third-party material to provide a thorough challenge to the existing streaming giants. Happily for its subscribers, Netflix is still bringing its all, with high quality content across loads of genres. Some of the best of that content for UK users can be found below.
The Lovers and the Despot - NEW
Credit: Magnolia Pictures
Kim Jong-Il is infamous for being part of the dictatorial dynasty that rules North Korea. What is less known is is love of cinema. This documentary tells the story of the South Korean couple - one an actress, the other a director, who were kidnapped and brought to Pyongyang to make movies for the regime.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes - NEW
10 years after a viral pandemic, one of the last surviving groups of humans and a colony of intelligent apes that resulted from the virus, living near a ruined San Francisco, come into contact. Trust is in short supply on both sides, and while some are willing to let the other group go about their business peacefully, others want to increase tensions and invoke a war.
The Hobbit - An Unexpected Journey - NEW
Credit: Warner Bros. PicturesThe first part of the Lord of the Rings prequel trilogy is now available to watch on Netflix. Bilbo Baggins enjoys his quiet life in the Shire, until Gandalf the wizard brings a gang of dwarves to his home, seeking his help in taking back their ancestral home from a greedy dragon. With great reluctance, he sets off on a thrilling journey to the Lonely Mountain.
After fighting in the American Revolutionary War, Ross Poldark, played by the dashing Aiden Turner, returns home to his family’s Cornish estate to begin his peacetime life. Upon his arrival, he finds his father is dead, the woman he hoped to marry is engaged to his cousin, and his estate has fallen into disrepair. In order to help the villagers who depend on him, and in memory of his father, Poldark gets to work putting things right.
As guest of honor at a NYC party, Nadia should be overjoyed. Instead she has an awful evening, and then dies. Over and over again. What’s going on, and how can she escape this deadly time loop?
The Bucket List
Credit: NetflixJack Nicholson and Morgan Freemen play Cole and Carter, two old men grappling with their terminal lung cancer diagnoses. Rather than sit around waiting for death to come and get them, the pair set out on a journey around the world, their goals decided by Carter, and financed by the wealthy Cole.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
The tale of a young woman, rescued from a doomsday cult’s underground bunker, is about to end its run with the last half of its final season, comprising six episodes. Will she finally find her place in the outside world and let go of her past and the influence of Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne?
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Credit: NetflixAs human and mutants alike face extinction at the hands of the robotic Sentinels, Wolverine is sent back in time to try and end the conflict before it can begin. He unites old friends and enemies in the 1970s, to help him in his task, but some among them seek to influence the future for their own purposes too.
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia - New Series
Returning for its 13th series, IASiP begins without The Gang’s resident lothario/sociopath Dennis. But before you know it, they’re all once again having riotous adventures in and around their Philadelphia Irish bar, taking on recent issues and trends like escape rooms, #metoo and gay pride parades.
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures
In this film, dreams are not the idle imaginings of your sleeping mind, but a source of valuable information to be plundered by criminal masterminds. However, one such group are tasked with planting an idea instead. It’s unbelievably dangerous - death is a constant risk, and the worlds imagined by dreamers are rarely bound by normal physical laws. But for the thieves’ leader, completing the job is his only chance of seeing his family again.
The Punisher Series 2
Frank Castle returns as the Marvel Comics vigilante who isn’t scared of taking lives to save others, fuelled by grief and a sadistic enjoyment of his lethal brand of justice. This time though, Castle’s travelling the USA to get away from New York and his alter ego. But upon foiling an attempted murder, his relationship with his hero self will be put to the test.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
A musical centred around a magical car and its owners. On a scrapheap, two children discover the battered car and beg their father to buy it. After fixing it up and taking it to the beach for a picnic, the family, plus their military-obsessed grandfather and the charming daughter of a local confectionery tycoon, find themselves fending off the villainous Vulgarians, and their brattish leader Baron Bomburst, who seeks the enchanted vehicle for himself.
Credit: NetflixYears after leaving Batman’s side, Dick Grayson, the first Robin, is now a police detective. He encounters a troubled girl with psychic powers, who is being pursued by an amnesiac woman with her own fiery abilities. Gar, a boy with the ability to transform into a tiger completes the group, who, brought together by chance, have to stop the horrifying future that Rachel foresees.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch
Christmas isn't complete without a new season of Black Mirror, but this time the team is doing something different. Instead of separate episodes it has launched Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, an interactive movie that allows you to choose the fate of the people in it... and what cereal they have for breakfast. It may not be a whole season but there's around five hours of material to get through so this one deserves your attention.
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures
This adaptation of Roald Dahl’s book of the same name sees a young boy and his superstitious grandmother face off against a gathering of child-hating witches, who unfortunately are holding their annual conference in the same hotel they’re staying in.
A Series of Unfortunate Events
The third and final series of the Netflix Original show appeared on New Year’s Day, completing the sad and terrible tale of the Baudelaires. Sad for them at least, for the viewer it’s much more enjoyable, with a delightfully dark visual style, a peculiar and varied cast, and an intriguing mystery that spans all three seasons.
If men are struggling to find the words to say to the woman they really want to date, then ‘Hitch’, a professional dating coach, can help you kickstart what will hopefully be a wonderful relationship. But Hitch is thrown off his game when he himself becomes interested in a newspaper columnist - who just happens to be investigating him and his work.
Credit: Warner Bros. PicturesFrom a portal at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, monstrous ‘kaiju’ emerge, threatening the destruction of humanity. The only defence is via enormous mechs, but the vital thing for their function, the ability for the machine’s dual pilots to merge with each other’s minds, gives a film of enormous city-wrecking battles a crucial human edge to ground it.
The Good Place
After a brief hiatus, the surreal comedy full of moral and philosophical questions has resumed its third series. We won’t spoil what’s been going on recently, but if you’re not familiar with the show, it’s about Kristen Bell’s Eleanor Shellstrop going to ‘The Good Place’ having lived a noble life on Earth before her untimely death. But the problem is: she’s the wrong Eleanor, and desperately tries to learn how to be good from her new friends in the afterlife.
Credit:Participant Media, Esperanto FilmojWritten, directed, produced, photographed and co-edited by Alfonso Cuarón, the Roma of the title is not the capital of Italy, but Colonia Roma, the neighbourhood of Mexico City where Cuarón grew up. This semi-autobiographical film is being distributed by Netflix after a short period at independent cinemas and considering the overwhelmingly positive reception, is quite a coup for the streaming giant.