Entertainment Inquiry #5: Answers to Life Post-'Game of Thrones' And 'Reign' - Plus, What's Good on Netflix And More!

Since there is only so much time in the day to read 750+word reviews, it seemed right to boil down all of the sentiments expressed on Eclectic Pop into a simple question and answer format; getting to the point in a concise and clear manner that transforms those broader analyses into a bite-size read. 

If there is an entertainment topic you want a quick answer to, the Entertainment Inquiry aims to give it to you. These questions have been generated by taking into account current hot topics and the entertainment interests you already come to Eclectic Pop for coverage on.

In this edition of the Entertainment Inquiry, get the answers to which movies are worth watching on Netflix, what to watch now that ‘Game of Thrones’ has ended for the year and more...

[Image by Madman Entertainment]
Question: Is the ‘Animal Kingdom’ TV show based on the movie of the same name? Was the movie worth expanding on? Is it worth watching beforehand?

TNT’s TV adaptation of the critically heralded 2010 crime drama stars Ellen Barkin in the role that earned Jackie Weaver, an Oscar nomination and the action has been transported from Australia to the sunny beaches of Southern California. It will be interesting to see if the series can improve upon the movie’s stark and unremarkable premise.

For a film lean on plot and even thinner on intrigue, it gave rise to the careers of current silver screen staple Joel Edgerton and ‘Blindspot’ star Sullivan Stapleton. Since shows like ‘Bates Motel’ and ‘Scream’ have proven there is great potential TV that can be culled from a movie script, ‘Animal Kingdom’ has the capacity to surprise. To answer the 3 main questions: Yes, no and no.

Question: Is ‘Love and Mercy’ a biopic?

Not really. Like Ron Howard’s ‘Rush’ only covered a certain chapter of Niki Lauda and James Hunt’s respective lives, ‘Love and Mercy’ hones in on two separately pivotal timelines in the life of Beach Boy’s legend Brian Wilson. In odd choice of casting juxtaposition, Wilson’s younger self is portrayed by Paul Dano and his later incarnation by John Cusack. Yes, that takes some getting used to.

Question: What are some good movies that might be flying under the radar on Netflix?
Brendan Gleeson starrer ‘The Grand Seduction’ and ‘If I Were You’ starring Marcia Gay Harden and Leonor Watling definitely bring the good-hearted laughs, if you are looking for quality comedies.

For something in a darker vein, check out ‘The Oxford Murders’, which also stars the mega-talented Watling, this time opposite Elijah Wood and John Hurt.

[Image by BBC]
Question: With ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Reign’ having ended their respective seasons; what is an alternative program worth watching to dull the ache of their absence?

Netflix recently added the two-part BBC miniseries, ‘Gunpowder, Treason and Plot’ starring Clemence Posey. While not a historically sound work, it is highly entertaining. Albeit the first half more than the second.

For ‘Reign’ fans the allure is evident, as ‘Gunpowder’ covers the story of that series’ main protagonist: Mary, Queen of Scots. In fact, it picks up where Season 4 of The CW series left off, with Mary’s return to her homeland and the tumult she faced trying to rule there.

Part 2 covers her son James’ (played by ‘Once Upon a Time’ actor Robert Carlyle) rise to power as he takes the throne after Elizabeth I. For ‘Thrones’ fans ‘Gunpowder’ is a chance to re-immerse in the HBO series’ medieval motif and if you pay close attention, you might recognize one historical figure’s striking similarity to a certain favorite for the Iron Throne. If there is a purposeful connection, history hints it might not end well for them.

Question: What’s a great feel-good movie streaming on Netflix?

If you want something sentimental, try ‘Dear Frankie’ starring Emily Mortimer and Gerard Butler. It is one of the best movies currently available to stream on Netflix. 'Dear Frankie' tells the heartwarming tale of a devoted single mom (Mortimer), whose years of lying to her deaf son about his father, catches up with her.

As her son's growing curiosity puts her in the position of hiring a man (Butler) to pretend to be the boy’s dad. ‘Dear Frankie’ is one of the most moving little gems on the streaming staple.

[Image by 20th Century Fox]
Question: What is the best and worst part of ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’?
The best part is ‘Game of Thrones’ star Sophie Turner’s exquisite turn as Jean Grey. The worst part is the character of Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence). Ever since the prequel series kicked off, they have been trying to sell the rather dull and limited character as one the most complex mutants of all-time, and it really does not work in this latest movie.

She is angry. We get it. She thinks she is super powerful. We get it. She has a weird crush on Magneto/Eric and a simply weird dynamic with Prof. X/Charles. We get it. It is just enough, already. 

Question: How is the second season of ‘Bloodline?'

Find out with this spoiler-free recap of Episode 1 here and a full review of Season 2 here.

Do you have a question for the Entertainment Inquiry? If so, share it in the comment section below or tweet @EclecticPop and it might get answered in the next column!

[Featured Image by Lionsgate/Roadside Attractions/BBC/20th Century Fox]