Arnold Schwarzenegger pumps himself up for success in George Butler's documentary 'Pumping Iron.'

‘Pumping Iron’ on Netflix

Anyone who believes that Arnold Schwarzenegger’s rise to Hollywood superstar was a fluke needs to see Pumping Iron (1977), George Butler’s documentary on bodybuilding culture of the 1970s which did more to popularize the sport in the culture at large than anything before or since. The film follows a handful of bodybuilders preparing for the […]

Richard Dormer, Sofie Gråbøl, Stanley Tucci, and Michael Gambon in 'Fortitude,' also starring Christopher Eccleston

‘Fortitude: Season One’ on Amazon Prime

Fortitude, a British-American co-production set on a remote Norwegian island in the Arctic Circle, shot largely on location in Iceland, and featuring an international cast, begins as a murder mystery and turns into something closer to biological horror. The town of Fortitude is called “the safest place on Earth” for its almost non-existent crime (the […]

Edie Falco is TV's most functional drug addict in the Showtime series 'Nurse Jackie."

‘Nurse Jackie: Seasons 1-7’ on Netflix and Showtime Anytime

Nurse Jackie: Seasons 1-7 – TV thrives on damaged heroes and Jackie Peyton (Edie Falco), the head nurse in New York hospital emergency room, is one of the most damaged. Tough, confrontational, fiercely dedicated to her most vulnerable patients and wickedly vindictive with rude patients, thoughtless visitors, inattentive doctors, and unfeeling administrators, Jackie’s mantra is […]

Susanne Wuest in the German horror drama 'Goodnight Mommy,' directed by Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz

‘Goodnight Mommy’ on Amazon Prime

Goodnight Mommy (2015) is an unsettling horror film built on scars (physical and psychological) that upset the connection between a mother (Susanne Wuest) and her sons, adolescent twins named Lukas and Elias played by real-life twin brothers Lukas Schwarz and Elias Schwarz. That fraternal connection is apparent in every scene, not just affection but the […]

Ethan Hawke and Denzel Washington in 'Training Day,' directed by Antoine Fuqua

What to watch: ‘Training Day’ and more on Netflix, Amazon, and VOD

Training Day (2001) earned Denzel Washington an Oscar for Best Actor for his performance as a corrupt narcotics cop. In part it’s because he’s playing against type: Denzel earned his reputation as Hollywood’s bedrock of decency and morality: his screen heroes fight fear, prejudice, and self-doubt for their goodness. Detective Alonzo Harris proved that the […]