This week, I am going to be doing something a little different. As excited as I was to see Harrison Ford and an needlessly computer animated dog form a friendship in early 20th century Alaska in “Call of the Wild,” I was not able to make it to the theater this weekend. Instead, I am going to go over a few things I have watched on streaming platforms over the past few weeks. This will give me the opportunity to talk about some recently released shows and movies I would not otherwise get the chance to discuss.
On Netflix, I watched David Lynch’s new short film “What Did Jack Do?” Lynch is known for his uniquely dream-like brand of surrealism, and this short is no different. It consists entirely of a detective, played by Lynch himself, interrogating a monkey whom he suspects in a murder. The dialogue is full of non-sequiturs, and the film is shot to look like a hard-boiled detective noir. Even so, the crackly sound design stands out the most to me. I found “What Did Jack Do?” really funny on my first watch, though I think it must have had to do with the monkey’s movements and the novelty of what I was seeing. On my second watch, I was surprised by how totally uninvested I was. It does not get anywhere close to matching Lynch’s best work—“Blue Velvet,” “Twin Peaks,” “Mulholland Drive”—but the complete absurdity of it makes it at least entertaining enough to watch once.
Also on Netflix, I finished the final season of animated comedy-drama series “BoJack Horseman.” Though it definitely got off to a slow start, “BoJack” kept on getting better and better as it went along and we got more familiar with the characters. This final season does not quite reach the heights of the previous couple of seasons—though one particular scene in the penultimate episode certainly stands among the show’s famous emotional gut punches—but I still enjoyed all of the episodes a great deal. I did feel satisfied with how things ended, and I feel comfortable calling “BoJack Horseman” my favorite show of all time.
Next, I watched about the first 20 minutes of “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before: P.S. I Still Love You” only because I did not have enough things to talk about here and I wanted to be able to say something about what seems to be Netflix’s most recent and popular original movie at the moment. I actually have seen the entirety of the original 2018 movie, though I could not tell you why I watched it apart from just being super bored. I thought it was an average high school teen romance movie. It could have been a little better, but it also could have been a whole lot worse. From what I saw, it seems like the sequel provides more of what the first movie provided. That can be a good or bad thing depending on where you stand, but I would say it is probably among the least insufferable of the generic teen romance movies.
Last, I saw the Amazon-produced drama “Honey Boy.” It first garnered notable attention for the story behind its inception. Shia LaBeouf wrote the semi-autobiographical screenplay while in a rehab facility, and it is clear this is extremely personal to him. While the script would be impressive enough on its own, LaBeouf truly shines in the role of what is clearly meant to be a representation of his own father. His performance really makes the movie worthwhile. I watched an interview where LaBeouf said it was very therapeutic for him to apply so much empathy for this person he had so much resentment for. I do not make this criticism often, but I really wish it had been a little longer and things had been a little more fleshed out. As things stand, there is a kind of satisfying resolution, but I feel like it could have had a stronger effect with a little more time. The story behind “Honey Boy” may be slightly more interesting than the movie itself, but the central character study and performance make it something I would recommend, even if I do feel it could have been better.
Drew Eckhart is a junior history and pre-law major from Edmond, OK. He has loved movies for as long as he can remember but thinks his passion really began when he watched “The Dark Knight” for the first time. His favorite type of movie blends comedy and drama seamlessly, and he loves great action films. His favorite movie is “The Graduate.”