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New to Streaming: ‘Miami Vice,’ ‘Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda,’ ‘Black Panther,’ and More

Written by on September 7, 2018 

miami-vice

With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’re highlighting the noteworthy titles that have recently hit platforms. Check out this week’s selections below and an archive of past round-ups here.

Black Panther (Ryan Coogler)

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There’s a sentiment expressed early on in Black Panther that just because something works doesn’t mean it can’t be improved. It’s a fitting ethos for the 18th film in Marvel Studios’ ten-year assembly line of blockbusters. However same-ish or fatigued some of the cinematic universe might feel, on the balance sheet, they work. While Ryan Coogler’s deep dive into the titular character’s Wakandan homeworld keeps the assembly line working, it heralds not only an improvement on the MCU, but a striking and grandiose fantasy in its own right. – Conor O. (full review)

Where to Stream: Netflix

Did You Wonder Who Fired the Gun? (Travis Wilkerson)

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Throughout the remarkable Did You Wonder Who Fired the Gun? – director Travis Wilkerson’s attempt to learn more about and confront the murder of the African American Bill Spann by his white great-grandfather, S.E. Branch, through a cinematic essay on racism in America – there are many black-and-white images of houses, forests, and roads in Alabama, the state in which the killing took place. As interview subjects recount memories or details related to the crime — through either first-person testimony or Wilkerson’s second-hand paraphrasing — the film often eschews focusing on the speaker to dwell on local spaces, quietly moving through static shots of Alabaman milieus. These images are so still that, at first, they resemble photographs — specifically, old photographs of the sort that one might find in the photo album of someone who was alive when Bill Spann was killed. But if you look closely, you’ll see that the leaves and grass are actually moving, rustling ever so slightly in the breeze. – Jonah J. (full review)

Where to Stream: iTunes

The Emperor’s New Groove (Mark Dindal)

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The name David Spade is not usually synonymous with “best,” but, even as a Joe Dirt apologist, The Emperor’s New Groove will certainly go down as his best film — pending some sort of Spadeaisance. Mark Dindal’s animation went through so many changes that an entire documentary was dedicated to its troubles, but it’s proof that even the most contentious production can yield bountiful results. This madcap, joke-a-second adventure has so many non sequiturs and seemingly drug-fueled asides that it seems like a gem compared to most of the sanded-down studio output. It was released about a year before Chuck Jones died; we’re not sure if he was able to see it, but he can rest proudly knowing both his animation style and strand of humor were greatly honored here. – Jordan R.

Where to Stream: Netflix

Flower (Max Winkler)

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Equal parts vulgar and endearing, Flower joins the ranks of recent female-led comedies such as Ingrid Goes West and The Edge of Seventeen that force you to empathize with the main character, regardless of how unlikable they may be. Though not as socially conscious as Ingrid and not as cohesive as Seventeen, Flower remains an inventive and surprising entry that appears to be very aware of (and even afraid of) its own boldness. – Murphy K. (full review)

Where to Stream: Hulu

Godard Mon Amour (Michel Hazanavicius)

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It’s more Pastiche du Godard than Histoire(s) du Godard in Michel Hazanavicius’ Godard Mon Amour and that’s not a bad thing. The director’s slight but surprisingly playful account of nouvelle vague maestro Jean-Luc Godard’s marriage to actress Anne Wiazemsky and his re-radicalization in the late 1960s has the potential to infuriate the more devout of Godard followers but there is plenty of good-hearted goading and creative homage to savor for the less pedantic fan. – Rory O. (full review)

Where to Stream: Amazon, iTunes

The Good, the Bad, the Weird (Kim Ji-woon)

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The films of Sergio Leone have influenced a generation (or more) of filmmakers, both explicitly and subtly, but few products of inspiration have more madcap fun than Kim Ji-woon’s The Good, the Bad, the Weird. Featuring Lee Byung-hun (who would actually go on to star in another Sergio Leone remake last year), Song Kang-ho, and Jung Woo-sung, the perfectly-cast trio simply have a blast in this South Korean western, which never shortchanges both its sensibilities from its native country as well as the genre it’s embracing. – Jordan R.

Where to Stream: MUBI (free for 30 days)

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (J.A. Bayona)

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A once-dormant entity is resurrected and vulgarly mutated to fit the irresponsible demands of an entire population in the name of capitalist greed–this is not only the core narrative throughline of the newly-resuscitated Jurassic Park franchise, but also the primary goal of the executives at Universal Pictures. In Fallen Kingdom, we literally see dollar signs light up across the eyes of a megalomaniacal business tycoon (i.e. Universal) as his new technologically advanced breed of dinosaurs (i.e. this new iteration of the franchise) sell for millions to thrill-seeking bidders (i.e. the audience). One would think these parallels are obvious enough to be intentional, yet the new batch of Jurassic films seem to be completely bereft of a much-needed sense of self-awareness. – Jordan R. (full review)

Where to Stream: Amazon, iTunes, Google

Lilo & Stitch (Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois)

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What other film can pull off starting with an all-out sci-fi adventure and transition into a heartful ode to culture and family? Before they delivered an even more impactful variation on a similar sort of creature-human bond with How to Train Your Dragon, Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois created this touching tale. Featuring a return to watercolor-painted backgrounds for Disney, as well as a reliance on 2D animation, it’s one of the company’s last in this era to have that long-missed tangibility. As often repeated in the film, “Family means nobody gets left behind,” and, by the end credits, you’ll feel like you’ve added a few new members to your own. – Jordan R.

Where to Stream: Netflix

Miami Vice (Michael Mann)

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I dare you to find a movie that is more self-assuredly cool than Miami Vice. I dare you to find a film that is more in love with itself than Miami Vice. I dare you to find two characters more cool-infused than Jamie Foxx and Colin Farrell as Ricardo Tubbs and Sonny Crocket (respectively) in Miami Vice. This movie burns with the fire that only the truly un-self-conscious can embrace, and every scene drips with style and grace. The violence is sudden and real while still managing to be thrilling and electrifying. Every beat is calibrated for maximum sleekness, and thanks to the investment of the actors and the determination of writer-director Michael Mann, that cool is achieved. The soundtrack thumps, the sun shines, and the bullets fly. This is the pinnacle of action in the new millennium. – Brian R.

Where to Stream: Amazon Prime

My Winnipeg (Guy Maddin)

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It’s some time after midnight, and you’re riding the bus. The rehearsed movements from here to bed are already running through your head: ten or eleven more blocks, fifty steps to the building door, up two flights of stairs, three doors in total. Effectively, you’re already asleep. So your mind wanders into a waking dream space encased in this bus. The lights, buildings, and trees around you reflecting from one window to the other intermingle with your recollections, from what you did two hours ago before you got on the bus to what you did six years ago on that bench you’re about to pass. Maybe you can see the city skyline, or, on occasion, a passing car or a silhouetted person. Perhaps, for a second, you dream about what’s way out there, off the bus route and past the skyline. The narrative of Guy Maddin’s My Winnipeg comprises this split second. – Nate F. (full review)

Where to Stream: MUBI (free for 30 days)

Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda (Stephen Nomura Schible)

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The genius artist Ryuichi Sakamoto is not only responsible for elevating the films of Nagisa Oshima, Bernardo Bertolucci, Brian De Palma, Pedro Almodóvar, and more, but he’s as prolific as they get, releasing over 20 solo albums, not to mention many other contributions to the world of music. He’s now the subject of a new documentary which delves into both his career and recent trauma in his life, and it’s now streaming.

Where to Stream: MUBI (free for 30 days)

Also New to Streaming

Amazon Prime

Beirut

HBO Go

Sleight

FilmStruck

Cul-de-sac
Kes
The Cage
Dead Man
What’s Up, Doc?

MUBI (free for 30 days)

Living Still Life
Boro in the Box
The Lebanese Rocket Society
Spring Night, Summer Night

Discover more titles that are now available to stream.


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