Five random Netflix movies reviewed by a procrastinating NatSci

If my friends weren’t sure until now, this is definitely a call for help

It’s currently 00:13, I’ve only got one online lecture and one supo tomorrow, as well as an entire computing project due in a week that I’ve only half done.  So this is obviously the perfect time to justify my inability to do any real work by doing the Work of the People. By that I mean reviewing a random collection of five movies I’ve watched on Netflix over the past few weeks, so that you cool cats and kittens don’t have to.

1. Lost in Translation

Roll-up, roll-up, player number one! Here we have Lost in Translation, directed by the wonderful Sofia Coppola, with Scarjo and ya boi Tom Hanks as two randos who both happen to be staying in a Japanese hotel at the same time and form an ~unlikely connection~. This one was actually fairly cool, had a solid level of banter, and managed to make me feel a certain kind of way about life and human connection which was fun.

Loved, loved, loved the ending – my personal theory about it was that the ending was just Hanks’ fantasy of the perfect goodbye, hence why we don’t hear what he says to her because the scene is sort of a hazy dream sequence where he imagines himself saying something perfect and romantic, kissing her, and getting to walk away with the satisfaction of perfectly concluding their short time together.

Anyway, give it a watch because I think it was pretty cool, but be prepared to obsess over online theories about the ending until you manage to justify an only semi-satisfying conclusion that takes way too long to explain to your friends who have no idea what you’re talking about and are giving you that concerned look again.

How else would Scarjo suddenly end up on the street Hank’s looking at as he drives away?? He just saw her 5 minutes ago in the hotel when they did that first weird awkward goodbye? She went UP the elevator after he left!!! UP!!!

2. The Terminal

Coming in a close second (in terms of the chronological order I watched these in), we have The Terminal! Also featuring Tom Hanks so I’m starting to see a theme in my movie choice now. Can be summarised as: about a dude who gets stuck in an airport for like 9 months due to a political situation in his home country during his flight over, which invalidates his passport and prevents the American border control from letting the ol’ chap in legally.

Direct quote from my notebook immediately after I watched this number: “Stupid movie and I hated wasting 2 hours of my life on that non-sensical idiotic garbage”. From my memory I don’t think this one was actually that bad, probably committing the worst crime of being exceedingly mediocre. Glad it worked out for the dude in the end but might’ve enjoyed it more if they’d written him an actual personality beyond the vague concept of “Not American” xoxo

Sorry to do this to you Hanky Tanky but this movie just really ain’t the one.

3. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Next one up is the hugely popular, and deservedly so, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. I cannot express in words how much I love this movie. I’ve technically seen this one before but this dude is such a vibe I had to share it with my sisters and watch it again.

To all those who have not had the pleasure of seeing this already it’s basically another John Hughes classic about this high school dude who fakes being sick from school to go and have fun with his friends all day, and all the havoc that ensues. Favourite scene: parade float city sing song – my ultimate desire in life is to experience the same confidence, spontaneity and freedom of spirit that I envision Ferris feels as he jumps on that random parade float and manages to get the whole city bopping to Danke Schoen (and what a bop it is). You have my heart forever.

4. Red Joan

Fourth in line is Red Joan, a genuinely random movie I popped on when I decided I was suddenly interested in Russian culture and wanted to pretend to Educate Myself. Turns out that was not really what the movie was about (oops) and was instead about this true story of a British woman involved in spying for the Soviet Union during the cold war.

I’ll admit, I was totally distracted the entire movie by my intense crush on Joan’s sexy communist lover, Leo. Main takeaways: cool motive? Patriotism is sometimes bad, atomic bombs are definitely bad. Bonus points for Joan studying natsci at Cam (we love to see it), negative points for studying physics (boo).  But then I checked her Wikipedia page and it turned out that Joan’s entire background was made up????  She actually went to the University of Southampton, studied Latin and logic, and dropped out after a year.  So now I betrayed.  Also, what was the deal with Leo running off having a kid with Sonya???? Weren’t they cousins?  Not cool man.

Why are the cute ones always so toxic and constantly asking for government secrets 🙁

5. Death of Stalin

Last on my list was Death of Stalin, recommended to me by my historian friend as a movie that actually had some real Russian history in it! Woooo! And this one mostly stuck to historic events! Yay!

The plot is kind of given away in the name here but in case you didn’t guess: Stalin dies. Now, the central committee have to fight over who gets power next. This one was fun and even managed to make me look up the Wikipedia page for Stalin’s death afterwards, which I shall count as a win for education.

It did make me realise that Voroshilov was missing from the movie though ☹ Where you at dude?

I know watching one historical comedy and reading a Wikipedia page doesn’t make you a humanities student, but I spent more time on this than on my earth sciences essay tonight, so I’ll take it.

Got me acting as if I know Russian for being able to pronounce 7 Russian last names.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand that’s a wrap! Thanks to those plucky few who stuck it out with me till the end. It’s now 01:41 so will be dropping off the face of the earth until approximately 12pm tomorrow.

I need some new hobbies… and maybe a chat with my tutor about healthy time management.


All photos are the author’s own screenshots from Netflix UK.