Perhaps as a gesture to the short month of February, the first of the month looks a little smaller than the usual massive amount of titles Netflix likes to dumb on you at the start. But there are some gems to be found.
The Brothers Bloom
The Brothers Bloom is the underrated second film from Rain Johnson, the brilliant director of Brick and Looper. In many ways this film is his ode to movie making and storytelling as it features Mark Ruffalo and Adrian Brody as a couple of con artists trying to put one over on Rachel Weisz. The real scene stealer of the film is Rinko Kickuchi (Pacific Rim) as a trigger happy character who's naturally called Bang Bang. It's funny, touching and the multiple levels of who's-conning-who will keep you guessing.
Plus: You may want to get a Nic Cage fix in with the moody Joe, scratch an anime itch with the fourth movie in the unstoppable Bleach franchise with Bleach the Movie: Hell Verse, or perhaps remember that time when Sean Penn and Robert DeNiro were onscreen together in David Mamet's We're No Angels.
Dead Snow: Red vs Dead
Dead Snow: Red vs Dead is the sequel to the fun, low budget Dead Snow movie that put director Tommy Wirkola (Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters) on the map. If you've seen the first one, you'll know what to expect: Zombie Nazis. But, as sequels do, expect more of everything this time around. More blood, more undead Nazis and, perhaps most notably, in this sequel you get a lot more laughs. While the first one didn't take itself all that seriously - Dead Snow 2 definitely cranks up the carnage and the comedy.
[RoboCop](movie:23537) was the reboot that a lot of people were excited about for a while. Myself included! The cast of Joel Kinnamen, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Keaton and Gary Oldman sounded promising - as did the director Jose Padilha, who had just released the cool, tense Brazilian action flick Elite Squad. Alas, it kinda came and went with little in the way of praise or anger... It was just out there and then gone and the general consensus seemed to be, eh. Is it time for a reevaluation? Maybe it plays better on Netflix than as something you end up spending $20 in a theater for? We can all find out on February 21st.
Plus: Catch up with bizzaro indie auteur Gregg Araki and his fine cast of Shailene Woodley and Eva Green in White Bird in a Blizzard.
Open Windows is the most recent film from the crazy brain of Nacho Vigalondo. He made quite the debut a while back with Timecrimes - one of the best time travel mind benders ever crafted. Seriously, find it and watch it if you haven't three of four times already. Even though he may have peaked early, Nacho is never short on ideas or energy and Open Windows is no different. It finds Elijah Wood as the owner of a website devoted to his favorite actress who has to try and save her from some devious hacker/kidnapper. The hook is that the whole film plays out like we're watching Wood's laptop screen (which, as the movie plays out you might think is the best, most powerful laptop ever forged by man) - with Frodo's big eyes staring back at us. [Open Windows](movie:881620), like on your computer screen, get it! Given the stlye of the film, it is another one that might play better on Netflix than it did in the theater.
House of Cards
[House of Cards](series:726551) may be the biggest title for Netflix this month. After Frank Underwood murdered and manipulated his way the presidency last season, we're all ready to find out where he can possibly go from here? Will Frank be able to hold it all together? Will the new First Lady? Will the press finally catch up to him? Let's start doing our stretches and get ready for some epic binge-watching now.