South Africa’s two biggest video streaming services, Netflix and Showmax, offer a range of new movies and TV shows to enjoy at home this weekend.
With lockdown level 4 remaining in effect until at least Sunday and a possible extension likely, you won’t be able to visit the movie theatres anytime soon.
The country’s biggest cinema chain Ster-Kinekor is currently not even allowed to operate its drive-ins.
Those who still enjoy the cinema experience and want to support the industry should be first in line to buy movie tickets when cinemas are reopened.
For the time being, however, South Africans can watch Hollywood blockbusters and binge-worthy TV shows in the comfort of their home.
The vast libraries of Netflix and Showmax make it easy to stay in front of the screen for hours.
This week, Netflix added its first Resident Evil TV show to its catalogue.
Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness is a four-part anime series, which critics have said is really made for fans of the video game franchise’s lore.
Set between the events of Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5, it centres around protagonist Leon S. Kennedy’s investigation into a cyber hacking incident at the White House, which also falls prey to a zombie infestation.
Leon later meets another well-known name in the Resident Evil universe, Claire Redfield, who’s been investigating a strange drawing made by a child refugee while working on a TerraSave-led mission to oversee the construction of a welfare facility in Africa.
Top of the list for Showmax subscribers who have not seen it yet should be 2019’s critically-acclaimed Joker.
For his portrayal of DC Comics’ infamous villain, Joaquin Phoenix was awarded the Oscar for Best Actor in 2020.
Joker’s plot revolves around how failed comedian Artur Fleck morphs into the clown prince of crime.
Be warned, however, Joker is a dark and gloomy film, so it’s not for those looking for a heartwarming story or a sincere chuckle.
For the type of laughter that is truly “the best medicine” (and not borne from a maniacal urge to murder), Netflix subscribers can now watch the second season of “I think you should leave” with Tim Robinson.
In each segment of this hilarious sketch comedy series, the former SNL writer and his guests do whatever they can to try to drive someone to the point that they need — or desperately want — to leave.
If you are up for a bit of lighthearted drama, Showmax is also streaming the first season of the drama series Normal People.
It currently enjoys a whopping 91% Rotten Tomatoes critics score and 93% rating among audiences.
The show has been heaped with praise for its portrayal of the on-again, off-again relationship of its lead characters, Irish small-town teenagers Marianne and Connell.
The Guardian has labelled it a “small-screen triumph” that “captures the beauty and brutality of first love perfectly”.
If none of these movies or TV shows are to your liking, there are plenty more to choose from that were added to the services in the past week.
Below are 10 of the best-rated movies and TV shows to watch on Netflix and Showmax this weekend.
Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness
IMDb – 7.0
Federal agent Leon S. Kennedy teams up with TerraSave staff member Claire Redfield to investigate a zombie outbreak.
IMDb – 8.4
Joaquin Phoenix gives a brilliant performance, earning him an Oscar. Shunned by society, a socially inept clown finds solace in being Gotham City’s most wanted man.
Fear Street Part 2: 1978
IMDb – 9.1
A summer of fun turns into a gruesome fight for survival as a killer terrorizes Camp Nightwing in the cursed town of Shadyside.
Normal People – S1
IMDb – 8.5
Following Marianne and Connell, from different backgrounds but the same small town in Ireland, as they weave in and out of each other’s romantic lives and start to grow up.
I think you should leave with Tim Robinson – S2
IMDb – 7.8
Actor Tim Robinson stars in this sketch comedy series – which he also co-created – that sees him trying to get people to go away.
IMDb – 7.6
Jamie Foxx and Michael B. Jordan are two men fighting for justice in this powerful true story.
IMDb – 7.5
As a career criminal considers going clean, his secret involvement with a recent heist victim threatens to expose him and his crew of bank robbers.
IMDb – 5.3 to 8.1
It all began with Rocky, the classic boxing drama written and starring Sylvester Stallone. Rocky had enough guts, glory and tenacity to win hearts worldwide, becoming the highest-grossing film of 1976.
Atypical – S4
IMDb – 8.3
This heartfelt comedy follows Sam, a teenager on the autism spectrum, who has decided he is ready for romance.
The Secret Life of Pets
IMDb – 6.5
Max is a spoiled terrier who enjoys a comfortable life in a New York building until his owner adopts Duke, a giant and unruly canine.