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Gyllenhaal shines in remake and the show about nothing hits streaming: This week’s best and biggest on Netflix

Check out Jordan Parker's 'The week's best and biggest on Netflix' every Friday on

Check out Jordan Parker's "The week's best and biggest on Netflix" every Friday on

The Guilty

Remakes rarely hold a candle to the original, and this take on the original Danish film of the same name is no different.

That said, the Americanized version of The Guilty leaves plenty to recommend, and it's a stunning feat all on its own.

The plot-by-numbers is taken directly from the first film, but it's compelling nonetheless. A police officer — demoted after an incident that brought disciplinary action — is working his last day at the 911 dispatch desk when he receives a disturbing call.

A woman is kidnapped and he resolves to do everything in his power to help her while trapped in the confines of his chair with his headset on.

Written by True Detective season one scribe Nic Pizzolatto and directed by the incredible Antoine Fuqua, this is a masterclass of a thriller.

It's Fuqua's best film since Training Day, and Jake Gyllenhaal gives his best turn since 2005's Brokeback Mountain.

A voice cast including Peter Sarsgaard, Riley Keough, Ethan Hawke and Halifax's own Eli Goree elevate affairs.

Though it may not be Oscar bait, it certainly is a heck of a ride.

4/5 Stars


The best heist film ever made, Heat is one of those movies that showcases absolutely everyone at their best.

It follows a group of high-end thieves who pull off incredible heists. But when an overzealous detective and the Los Angeles Police Department get on their trail, they find themselves in the crosshairs.

Writer-director Michael Mann creates his magnum opus with this one, and it transcends the crime-drama trappings to become one of the most surprising films of all time.

Robert De Niro and Al Pacino go head-to-head in this one, and they're both incredible. For that matter, so are young Val Kilmer and Ashley Judd.

Filled with crackling dialogue and one of the best shootout scenes I've ever seen, Heat is a film that's impossible not to love.

4.5/5 Stars

Motherless Brooklyn

This adaptation of Jonathan Lethem's famous book was nearly a decade in the making, and it was a feat to even get it on the screen.

Writer-director Edward Norton put his heart and soul into this film, and it shows. A passion project for a skilled actor, it doesn't have the panache a seasoned filmmaker would have brought, but it's definitely worthwhile.

Norton also stars as Lionel Essrog, a private detective with Tourette's Syndrome who tries to solve the murder of his mentor.

The 1950s New York setting is truly great and lends itself to some wonderful cinematography.

Norton, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Alec Baldwin, Willem Dafoe, Bobby Cannavale and Bruce Willis are all fantastic here.

It's not a groundbreaking effort, and though not his debut, Norton could use more experience behind the camera. That said, Motherless Brooklyn is an interesting gem many probably haven't heard of.

3.5/5 Stars

The Ring

One of my favourite memories at the multiplex was seeing this little film with my mom. Neither of us had any clue what we were in for, but we were both horror lovers.

What we got was a film neither of us would soon forget. It's been nearly 20 years since I witnessed The Ring, a remake of Ringu, and it still haunts me.

Writer Ehren Kruger (Arlington Road) and Pirates of the Caribbean franchise director Gore Verbinski create a mesmerizing, terrifying film.

It's a visceral affair and intensely frightening. It follows a journalist trying to write a story about a videotape that causes the death of anyone who sees it.

The Ring catapulted Naomi Watts to fame, and Martin Henderson and Brian Cox give great performances.

This is one of the scariest movies I've ever seen, and it holds up.

4/5 Stars


Growing up, I absolutely hated this show. I couldn't relate to it and I didn't care about any of the plot lines.

But the older I got, the more I understood. This show about the awkwardness and intricacies of human interaction and emotion is absolute gold.

It follows four New York City friends, centred on stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld, and their exploits and horrible relationships with others.

The characters here are selfish, narcissistic and absolutely awful in so many ways, but creators Larry David and Seinfeld put up a mirror to the rest of us who keep our worse instincts inside.

Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Michael Richards and Jason Alexander all shine, and there are guests appearances that will have you rolling laughing.

This is classic TV comedy at its best, and it's certainly required viewing.

4/5 Stars

Jordan Parker's weekly film reviews can be found on his blog, Parker & The Picture Shows.

About the Author: Jordan Parker

Jordan Parker is a freelance journalist and runs entertainment firm Parker PR. He's been a movie nerd since he was old enough to walk.
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