Streaming Surprises: Our picks for the best of streaming movies.

Image result for the weather underground
Stream a documentary on 1960s radicals that brings insights to our current times. Image via Snagfilms.

Filmworks board members and volunteers love movies.  It’s why we do what we do.  When we’re not busy putting together screenings at the Tower Theatre we spend much of our time watching movies at home and now we want to share some of our top picks with you.  This new blog will feature some of our favorite hidden gems that are available on various streaming media platforms that you might have missed.  So pop some popcorn, get a comfy spot on the couch, and settle in for a movie night at home.

“Wendy and Lucy”

Filmmaker Kelly Reichardt has been one of my favorite directors since I saw her tense, off-speed western “Meek’s Cutoff” about five years ago. In preparation to see her latest — “Certain Women,” one of my favorite films of 2016 that I was lucky to catch recently during its brief run at the State Theatre in Modesto — I first backtracked to Reichardt’s breakout 2008 drama and Cannes favorite. Michelle Williams stars as Wendy, a woman fleeing an unnamed family crisis, as she treks across the Pacific Northwest with her dog Lucy in an attempt to make it to Alaska and find work. Reichardt deftly presents us with an intimate portrait of a young woman quietly oscillating between independence and desperation, a fine line that can leave us stranded in innumerable ways.

Submitted by Jefferson Beavers. Available on Amazon Prime.

“The Weather Underground”

This 2002 documentary examines the rise and ultimate fall of the radical left in the 1960s and 1970s.  Directors Sam Green and Bill Segal use archival news footage and current interviews from surviving members of the radical political group The Weather Underground to untangle the mix of anger, principal, celebrity, and hubris that swept across the student activist movement of the 1960s to create the more extreme climate of the 1970s.  While the story of The Weather Underground has always been a fascinating study on the fine line between activism and terrorism, our current times brings a new poignancy to this rumination on the distinctions between thinking right, doing right, and being right.

Submitted by Fae Giffen.  Available on Amazon Prime.