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New to Streaming: ‘Frances Ha,’ ‘Tabu,’ ‘Twixt,’ ‘This is Not a Film,’ ‘The Last Days on Mars’ & More

Written by on November 1, 2013 

With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we believe it’s our duty to highlight the recent, recommended titles that have recently hit the interwebs. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and more. Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below, and shoot over suggestions to @TheFilmStage.

Big Sur (Michael Polish)

I’ve never read a novel by Jack Kerouac—the only Beat Generation tome I have leafed through is William S. Burroughs’ Naked Lunch—but I imagine the experience is similar to that of watching director Michael Polish’s adaption of the author’s 1962 work, Big Sur. The film is a literal stream of consciousness depiction of the legend’s own word, eight-five percent driven by voiceover narration assumedly being read directly out of the book. This is all backed by a sprawling Explosions in the Sky-lite score from The National and gorgeously composed images of the On the Road scribe’s (non)fictional band of bohemian hedonists and the California environment they inhabit. An ingenious way to bring the story to life, such an experimental visual form’s potential to captivate might leave something to be desired. – Jared M. (full review)

Where to Stream: Cable on Demand, Google Play

Cutie and the Boxer (Zachary Heinzerling)

For first-time filmmaker Zachary Heinzerling, Sundance Film Festival gave him quite a welcome. The helmer picked up the top directing award for his documentary Cutie and the Boxer, not to mention acquisition from The Weinstein Company off-shoot Radius-TWC. After a theatrical release this past summer, the film, which follows Ushio Shinohara and Noriko Shinohara, a couple dedicated to art, is now on VOD. Having been married for forty years, the film dives into their relationship and struggles that come with their craft. – Jordan R.

Where to Stream: AmazoniTunes, Google Play

Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach)

Mild, existing vestiges of its star’s “mumblecore” origins and its director’s acidic social preening are ultimately rejected in Frances Ha, a film that shows itself to have more kinship with the likes of Woody Allen’s Manhattan. (The black and white cinematography set amidst New York City being a bracingly obvious touchstone.) In its spirit, an alternately loose-limbed and tight-wired current runs through the Noah BaumbachGreta Gerwig picture, thanks to an inextricable bond between image, script, and performance: the camera casts a patient glance on people in apartments, subways, bars, and restaurants, capturing the casual doling out of personal revelations which, set over a brisk 80-or-so minutes, accumulate into the portrait of human beings that is often painful but, somehow, always an undiluted pleasure. – Nick N.

Where to Stream: AmazoniTunes, Netflix

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