With so many films coming out in theatres and streaming, it’s hard to get to everything when it’s released. So here’s a quick catch-up on some of the Netflix Original dramas we missed this year. These are rapid-fire reviews of Calibre, How it Ends and Extinction.
Synopsis: A shocking deed turned their weekend trip into a nightmare. Now their only hope is to swallow their paranoia and act normal. (Netflix)
Starring: Jack Lowden, Martin McCann and Tony Curran
Writer: Matt Palmer
Director: Matt Palmer
Running Time: 101 mins
Calibre is a suspenseful and shocking Scottish thriller that delivers a painful, fast-paced and stomach-churning story. While the film has its flaws and plot holes, the strong characters, authentic performances, atmospheric cinematography and deep themes make for a bleak, but realistic look at the darkness of human nature. It is a well-crafted film with its fair share of jaw-dropping moments.
HOW IT ENDS
Synopsis: In the midst of an apocalypse, a man struggles to reach his pregnant wife, who is thousands of miles away. (Netflix)
Starring: Theo James, Kat Graham and Forest Whitaker
Writer: Brooks McLaren
Director: David M. Rosenthal
Running Time: 113 mins
How it Ends is a mundane apocalyptic thriller that somehow manages to waste a decent cast in a genre that is typically not hard to make a passable film in. While some of the actors give okay performances, their underdeveloped characters reside in a dull world that only goes downhill from the beginning making you not curious about how it ends, but when will it mercifully end. It is an achievement in itself to watch this film from start to end with never once fast-forwarding.
Synopsis: A father has a recurring dream of losing his family. His nightmare turns into reality when the planet is invaded by a force bent on destruction. Fighting for their lives, he comes to realize an unknown strength to keep them safe from harm. (Netflix)
Starring: Michael Pena, Lizzy Caplan and Mike Colter
Writers: Spenser Cohen and Brad Kane
Director: Ben Young
Running Time: 95 mins
Extinction is a bland, safe sci-fi that is void of any serious drama or thrills. While the concept looks good on paper, the execution fails to bring anything worthwhile to the table as the messy script, passable CGI and bored performances make for a slow story that easily surrenders and succumbs to its own shortcomings. It had such an interesting premise with a lot of potential in its themes, but became a dull addition to the genre.
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