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New to Streaming: ‘The World’s End,’ ‘Only God Forgives,’ ‘Charlie Countryman,’ ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ & More

Written by on November 15, 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.

Barbara (Christian Petzold)

What’s so greatly appealing about Christian Petzold‘s Barbara is that, for a good chunk of its 105-minute runtime, the film douses itself in an atmosphere of restrained mysteriousness, as if to suggest the possibility that layers upon layers will be peeled back if we only remain attentive and patient. In particular, Nina Hoss‘s lead performance — as the title character, an intelligent, mature-looking doctor relegated to work in a deserted village after attempting to flee the German Democratic Republic of 1980 — seems to be an exercise of almost pictorial passivity, hinting at a second gear that we’re sure is going to be unleashed in due time. – Danny K. (full review)

Where to Stream: Netflix

Charlie Countryman (Fedrik Bond)

Point in fact, very little is necessary about Fredrik Bond‘s mostly dreadful feature debut Charlie Countryman. Starring Shia LaBeouf as the titular Charlie and Evan Rachel Wood as the young woman from Bucarest who steals his heart, Countryman is a visually and audibly distracted aggravation of a movie, constantly searching for a reason to keep going and constantly failing to make a valid case for itself. The basic gist of this disaster is that Charlie’s mom has just died, so he decides to go to Bucharest to “find himself.” In the process, he falls in love with a mysterious woman named Gabi (Rachel Wood) who’s still married to an abusive gangster named Nigel (Mads Mikkelsen). What follows is some version of the star-crossed lover story, with a lot of drugs and nudity and Sigur Ros and M83 music. – Dan M. (full review)

Where to Stream: iTunes, Google

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: Netflix

Grabbers (Jon Wright)

We’ve seen aliens turn up in New York City, Tokyo, Los Angeles, London and many more locales around the world, but they picked the wrong place to invade in the latest creature feature. In Jon Wright‘s Irish horror comedy Grabbers, their one weakness is alcohol and yet they landed in the Irish countryside. After premiering at Sundance Film Festival last year, the film which follows a fishing village that comes under attack by some nasty, face-sucking monster, is now available to stream on Netflix.

Where to Stream: Netflix

A Hijacking (Tobias Lindholm)

A Hijacking revolves around the unraveling of the mystique of bravery and its risks and rewards. To be brave does not mean to be smart. When Danish cargo ship MV Rozen, with seven crewmembers, is hijacked by Somali pirates, an outside consultant is hired by the corporation that owns the boat to help in negotiations and tactics. Instead of following his specific advice, though, the CEO of the company wants to handle the direct negotiations instead of utilizing an outside negotiator. We learn early on that he runs a hard bargain when dealing with clients, but those matters aren’t life and death. While we see the tremendous toll and pressure that it places on the CEO, we also learn what it’s like to be part of that seven man crew as well. – Bill G. (full review)

Where to Stream: Netflix

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