Saturday 23 February 2019

Sick of festive partying? Lie low with our guide to what’s new on Netflix in January

Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro in Joy
Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro in Joy
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

You've dragged the last sorry dregs out of the party season and now there's nothing left to do but curl up and lick your self-inflicted wounds in front of the TV for the rest of the month.

At least there's Netflix to tide you over the dark days of January with life-affirming documentaries like He Named Me Malala to heart-warming flicks like Joy, Julie & Julia, The BFG, Pride and Annie.

If you're in the horrors and want to wallow, however, Paddy Breathneach's Irish set horror flick Shrooms should serve you well.

Also landing this month is the entire eight season run of Weeds as well as Seinfeld's new Netflix Original series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee Collections to raise a chuckle or two.

And we can't wait for A Futile and Stupid Gesture, a Netflix Original film about comedy king Doug Kenney, who co-created the National Lampoon, Caddyshack, and Animal House.

Kenney was at the center of the 70’s comedy counter-culture which gave birth to Saturday Night Live and a whole generation's way of looking at the world.  Our own Domhnall Gleeson plays Henry Beard, one of the founders of National Lampoon.  It lands January 26.

Another addition aiming to rise a smile is Netflix Original film The Polka King, starring Jack Black as Jan Lewan, a Polish immigrant who draws his fans into Ponzi scheme and ends up in jail.  It's based on a true story.

If you haven't already realised, the new series of Charlie Brooker's Black Mirror is already available since December 29.  If you have yet to experience the marvel that is Black Mirror (you lucky thing), the first three series and the Jon Hamm Christmas instalment are all there for your perusal too...

Here's the list of what's in store for January:


Die Hard 4.0

Len Wiseman's instalment sees New York cop John McClane assuming hero mode once again as terrorists kick off a plot to bring down the US in a cyber attack.  It's stupidly entertaining, which is fine by us for January 1st.

Weeds Seasons 1-8

Before Breaking Bad there was Jenji Kohan's brilliant series about a widowed mother of two boys who begins selling marijuana to support her family after her husband dies of a heart attack.  Perfect for a New Year's Day binge.


He Named Me Malala

After the Taliban tries to kill her for speaking out on behalf of girls' education, Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai emerges as a leading advocate for children's rights and the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.


Martin Luther: The Idea that Changed the World

History buffs will no doubt enjoy this doc which chronicles the life story of the penniless monk Martin Luther who in 1517 sparked the Protestant Reformation.


The Undateables series 1-3

Doc series following people with challenging conditions who are looking for love.  Like any dating show it's funny, moving, and sweet.


Great Interior Design Challenge: Season 3

You'll be staring at the four walls of your home all month so you might as well pick up some decor inspo.


Howards End (1992)

Romantic drama based on EM Forster's novel, produced by Merchant Ivory, and starring an impressive cast including Anthony Hopkins, Vanessa Redgrave, Helena Bonham Carter, Emma Thompson and Prunella Scales.  It was nominated for nine Oscars and bagged three and will get you through a tough morning.


The Paper: Season 1

MTV's reality TV show covering the lives of the Cypress Bay High School newspaper staff in Florida.


A Royal Night Out (2015)

Two years before The Crown landed on Netflix came A Royal Night Out  with Sarah Gadon in the lead role as a young Princess Elizabeth who sneaks out of Buckingham Palace to enjoy the VE Day celebrations. 


The Patriot (2001)

Roland Emmerich's historical fiction war flick.  It stars Mel Gibson but the late great Heath Ledger is in there too so worth a look.


Maddman: The Steve Madden Story

Feature length doc about the origins of the Steve Madden brand and the man behind the shoes.  It charts Madden's humble beginnings from overcoming addiction to going to prison over his involvement with Stratton Oakmont, the firm headed up by Jordan Belfort (of The Wolf of Wall Street fame), to building a billion dollar company.


Lovesick Season 3 - Netflix Original series

In his quest for true love, Dylan found chlamydia. Joined by friends Evie and Luke, he relives past encounters as he notifies all his former partners.  Starring: Johnny Flynn, Antonia Thomas, Daniel Ings


Riverdale Season 2

A new episode will arrive every Thursday.  THAT controversial Archie and Betty development comes with season 2...



Conan the Barbarian (2011)

A remake of the Arnie version with Jason Momoa in the title role. Ron Perlman and Rose McGowan also star.



Julie & Julia

Just the easy-watching, heartwarming tonic you'll need four days after the New Year celebrations!  Meryl Streep and Amy Adams star in this Nora Ephron comedy drama about a young New Yorker who sets out to cook all 524 recipes in chef Julia Child's cookbook over the course of 365 days. She wrote a blog about her endeavors which resulted in a book.  Streep plays Julia in flashbacks charting the early days of her career.



The End of the F***ing World: Season 1

A 17 year old who believes he's a psychopath hits it off with the new girl at school.  She persuades him to join her on a road trip in search of her real father. 


Think Like a Man Too

Romcom sequel.  The gang head to Vegas for a wedding.


Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 4

The excellent fourth season sees Jake and Holt moved to Florida under the witness protection program until the Nine-Nine helps them take down Figgis.


Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee Collections - Netflix Original series

According to Netflix, 'Jerry Seinfeld's roving talk show combines coffee, laughs and vintage cars into quirky, caffeine-fueled adventures with the sharpest minds in comedy' which sounds exactly right for January 5th.


Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency Season 2 - Netflix Original series

Eccentric amateur sleuth Dirk and his grudging assistant Todd make their way haphazardly through a peculiarly tangled, dangerous supernatural mystery.  Starring: Samuel Barnett, Elijah Wood, Neil Brown Jr.


Rotten - Netflix Original documentary

This docuseries travels deep into the heart of the food supply chain to reveal unsavory truths and expose hidden forces that shape what we eat.




Will Smith stars as Dr Bennet Omalu a forensic pathologist who fights against the National Football League trying to suppress his research on chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) brain degeneration suffered by professional football players.  Also starring Alec Baldwin, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Albert Brooks.



The BFG (2016)

Spielberg's magical flick brings Roald Dahl's strange and wondrous tale to life.  One to watch with the smallies (or just by yourself).


Star Trek Discovery Season 1

New episodes will arrive every Monday.  After a century of silence, war erupts between the Federation and Klingon Empire, with a disgraced Starfleet officer at the center of the conflict.Starring: Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, Shazad Latif



Pride (2014)

Heartwarming British comedy drama about UK LGBT activists who lent their support to the miners during their lengthy strike of the National Union of Mineworkers in the summer of 1984. 


The Jane Austen Book Club (2007)

Romantic drama adapted from the 2004 novel of the same name by Karen Joy Fowler.  Six Californians form a book club devoted to studying Austen and find parallels between her works and their own modern lives.  Starring Maria Bello, Amy Brenneman and Emily Blunt.


Disjointed Part 2

The Netflix Original series is back for a second run.  Chuck Lorre's sitcom stars Kathy Bates as a woman who opens up a weed store called Ruth's Alternative Caring. 


The Polka King

This Netflix Original film stars Jack Black as Jan Lewan, a Polish immigrant who draws his fans into Ponzi scheme and ends up in jail. Based on a true story.



Eye in the Sky (2016)

This was Alan Rickman's last role. He starred opposite Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul, and Barkhad Abdi in the film which charts the ethical challenges of drone warfare.


Homeland Season 6

We'll never have enough of Carrie Matheson (Claire Danes).  She's back in the US, living in Brooklyn with her daughter and working for an organisations working to provide aid to Muslims living in the US.  Peter Quinn survived but has suffered a major stroke while Saul Berenson and Dar Adal are still CIA operatives. 


Manolo: The Boy Who Made Shoes for Lizards

One for the shoe addicts.  Documentary profiling the legendary shoe designer Manolo Blahnik.  Includes interviews with fans including Anna Wintour, Rihanna, Palmoa Picasso, Iman, Naomi Campbell, Rupert Everett, Karlie Kloss and André Leon Tally.



The Zero Theorem (2014)

Probably one for Terry Gilliam fans as it's unlikely to convert the unconverted.  Oscar-winner Christoph Waltz stars as Qohen Leth, a genius tasked with working a project given to him by Management (Matt Damon) designed to discover the meaning of life.  Also starring Melanie Thierry, Lucas Hedges, David Thewlis and Tilda Swinton.


Shrooms (2007)

Paddy Breathnach's horror about a group of American teens who take magic mushrooms in the woods in Ireland and live (or do they?) to regret it is genuinely terrifying.


Grace and Frankie Season 4

Season 4 of the Netflix Original series was renewed less than three weeks after the season 3 premiere, according to Variety, so it looks like the series is something of a smash hit.  The series stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin as Grace and Frankie, sworn enemies who find common ground when their husbands leave them for each other.  Lisa Kudrow will be joining for season 4 and we cannot wait.


The Open House

Netflix Original film stars '13 Reasons Why' actor Dylan Minette as a teenager who moves, with his mother (Piercey Dalton) to a new house where they start to be attacked by threatening forces.


Trolls: the beat goes on! Season 1

Netflix Original series for kids.




January is grim.  This film is grim.  It's the perfect match...


Fargo Season 3

Critically acclaimed third season of the hit black comedy.  Ste in 2010 it centers on Emmit and his younger brother Ray Stussy (Ewan McGregor).  Emmit is somewhat successful, Ray is not and he blames his older brother with tension simmering to the point of murder.  Mary Elizabeth Winstead plays Ray's girlfriend while David Thewlis and Carrie Coon round out the cast.  Excellent.



Black Lightning Season 1

New episode lands every Tuesday.  Based on the DC Comics character it stars Cress Williams as the retired superhero who becomes a vigilante opposite China Anne McClain, Nafessa Williams, Christine Adams. 



Joy (2015)

David O'Russell's charming film starring Jennifer Lawrence as Joy Mangano, a young mum who created her own business empire.  Also starring Robert De Niro, Édgar Ramírez, Diane Ladd, Virginia Madsen.  The ideal antidote to the end of the month blues.


Despicable Me 2

Fact: it's impossible to be miserable when the minions are around.  Watch on repeat for a zap of energy and joy and to keep your own bored-of-their-Christmas-toys-already minions entertained.



A Futile and Stupid Gesture

This Netflix Original film tells the story of comedy king Doug Kenney, who co-created the National Lampoon, Caddyshack, and Animal House.  Kenney was at the center of the 70’s comedy counter-culture which gave birth to Saturday Night Live and a whole generation's way of looking at the world.  Directed by David Wain it also stars Emmy Rossum, Seth Green, and Natasha Lyonne.


Annie (2014)

Fact: it's impossible to be miserable when Annie is on.  This is the latest adaptation of the 1977 Broadway musical featuring songs including Maybe, Tomorrow, and It's A Hard Knock Life.  Starring Quvenzhané Wallis, Cameron Diaz and Jamie Fox.


Perfect Stranger

A journalist goes undercover to ferret out businessman Harrison Hill as her childhood friend's killer. Posing as one of his temps, she enters into a game of online cat-and-mouse.  Halle Berry, Bruce Willis and Giovanni Ribisi star.


Dirty Money

Netflix Original documentary - From rigged cars to wildly inflated drug prices, this documentary series lifts the lid on shocking acts of corporate greed and corruption.


Llama llama Season 1

Netflix Original series for kids


The Adventures of Puss in Boots Season 6

Netflix Original series for kids



Retribution season 1

Netflix Original series.  A dishonest banker pays the ultimate price for his wrongdoings when he is held hostage in his own speeding car by a bomb-making extortionist.  Starring: Luis Tosar, Javier Gutiérrez, Elvira Mínguez


Entourage (2015)

Feeling flush again after payday?  Live vicariously through the Entourage lads in their big screen outing which sees Vincent Chase (Adrian Grenier) go over budget on his directorial debut.  The usual suspects are back - Kevin Connolly, Kevin Dillon, Jerry Ferrara and Jeremy Piven.

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