New on Netflix, HBO, Amazon, and Hulu October 2018
No tricks, just treats when it comes to streaming in October, with your favorite horror movies, and more, coming to the small screen.
Here's what you should watch this month:
Full Metal Jacket (Amazon Prime) – Stanley Kubrick's ice-cold take on the Vietnam War divided audiences in 1987, but it contains some of the director's finest work. Matthew Modine stars as a seemingly pacifist soldier, but the movie is dominated by R. Lee Ermey's awesome, profane performance as a drill instructor. The second half falls a little flat because of Ermey's exit halfway through.
The Human Stain (HBO) – An underrated adaptation of the great Philip Roth novel inspired by President l Clinton's impeachment and the Monica Lewinsky scandal. The casting of Anthony Hopkins as a New England professor with a secret and Nicole Kidman as a campus cleaning woman was widely criticized at the time, but their performances hold up. Writer-director Robert Benton showed great respect for Roth's book.
The Mist (Netflix) – This 2007 adaptation of a Stephen King story is one of the most genuinely frightening horror films of the modern era. A group of ordinary people is trapped in a Maine supermarket when a weird mist rolls in, bringing with it unearthly creatures of various shapes and sizes. Marcia Gay Harden gives a terrifying performance as a religious hysteric trapped in the store.
The Post (HBO) – Meryl Streep received her 21st Oscar nomination for her strong work as Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham in this 2017 Steven Spielberg drama about the publication of the Pentagon Papers. Tom Hanks doesn't get as much screen time as Post editor Ben Bradlee, but he partners Streep well. It's an important piece of modern history brought to the screen with intelligence.
Valley of the Dolls (Hulu) – One of the best examples of a so-bad-it's-good camp classic. The 1967 hit was intended as a serious adaptation of Jacqueline Susann's bestselling novel about Hollywood excesses, but audiences took it as a comedy and laughed their heads off. Patty Duke is wildly miscast as a Judy Garland-type, but her over-the-top emoting triggers much of the unintentional hilarity.
Winter Passing (Amazon Prime) - Virtually no one saw this movie written and directed by playwright Adam Rapp when it had a brief theatrical life in 2007. But it's a little gem about a famous reclusive writer in the J.D. Salinger vein who is forced to reunite with his adult daughter over a plan to publish his letters. Ed Harris is wonderful as the writer and Zooey Deschanel matches him as the daughter.
Schitt's Creek, Season 4 (Netflix) – The Canadian comedy series, starring Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara, qualifies as a cult show because fans simply cannot get enough of it. Levy and O'Hara play a formerly rich and powerful couple who lose everything and are reduced to living in a small town they once bought as a joke. They are forced to live with their grown children who are played brilliantly by Dan Levy and Annie Murphy. It's a classic fish out of water set-up that results in one of the best comedy series ever.