Connect with us

Movie News

The Best Of British Movies On Netflix

Sarah Casserley

Published

on

Rocks image
Film 4 Productions

We’re taking a look at the best of British movies currently available to stream on Netflix. Movies so good you should stop what you’re doing now and grab the remote.

Sometimes when sitting down to watch a film, we want something raw and gritty. The type of film that speaks the truth, gives us a snapshot into people’s lives or makes a fantasy or horror genre more realistic. There’s no better film category to fit this bill than an original or independent British film. They make you laugh, make you cry and make you think all in around 90 minutes.

As there are so many talented British screenwriters, directors and actors out there. We wanted to celebrate them and their films and achievements, with a list of seven British films on Netflix that you simply must watch.

So, next time you want a film you can really get your teeth into. Rather than scrolling endlessly, pick something from this list and get ready to be entertained.

1. Wild Rose (2018)

The film follows Rose-Lynn, played by Jessie Buckley, a young mother of two who dreams of becoming a country singer. This Film 4 feature follows her struggles between her reality, her dreams and how she can find a path that allows her to have both.

Star of the show

Jessie Buckley, also known for her roles in ‘War and Peace’ and ‘Chernobyl’, is an Irish actress and singer. Her singing skills definitely come across in this film especially in the original song ‘Glasgow’ (which she performed at the BAFTAS 2020). Her Irish accent, yet, is pretty much undetectable as she delivers an incredible performance as a Glaswegian. As well as Buckley, there are some equally amazing supporting performances in this film. Especially by Julie Walters, who plays her mother, and Sophie Okonedo, as her employee.

Writer and Director

‘Wild Rose’ was the first film to come from Scottish screenwriter Nicole Taylor. Better known for her TV work, such as the award-winning three-part BBC series ‘Three Girls’. For the making of ‘Wild Rose’, Taylor teams up with British TV and Film Director Tom Harper to bring to life this funny, outspoken character and the world around her. Harper’s credentials are also award-winning, as he directed ‘War and Peace’ and 3 episodes of ‘Peaky Blinders’.

Awards

Across 2019 and 2020, this film was nominated 34 times across several award shows. These included the BAFTA for Best Leading Actress (Buckley), and the British Independent Film Awards for Best Screenplay, Best British Independent Film and Best Supporting Actress (Walters), among 6 others. The film also won several awards, like a Circuit Community Award for Best Original Song. Plus, BAFTA Award Scotland for Best Feature Film and Best Actress (Buckley), and a British Independent Film Award for Best Music.

With all these nominations and awards under its belt, you can imagine that Wild Rose is a worthy watch. You don’t even need to like country music to love the message behind the story.

2. Tucked (2018)

If you want a film that oozing with charm and humour, ‘Tucked’ is for you. Set in Brighton, it sees two drag queens, Jackie (Darren Nesbit) and Faith (Jordan Stephens), make an unlikely bond. They struggle with gender, family and life issues together, and they find out who they are and what life is really about.

Stars of the show

TV and film veteran Darren Nesbitt, along with actor and one half of ‘Rizzle Kicks’ pop group, Jordan Stephens. They deliver such heart-warming, realistic and funny performances. Both the characters are relatable as they cross generations and their dynamic builds throughout the film. There is also another relatable cameo from ‘Skins’ actor April Pearson. Although her scene is short, the emotion she portrays adds to the relatability of the overall story in so many ways.

Writer and Director

Jamie Patterson was both the writer and director of this film. He is a prolific British filmmaker and co-founder of JumpStart Productions. Which has also bought us films such as ‘Home for Christmas’ and ‘Making Tracks’ (which is well worth the watch and on Amazon Prime to rent). In an interview with PremiereScene, Jamie explains that the inspiration behind this feature was from a drag show he watched in his hometown of Brighton. Where one of the queens left him wanting to know more about her and who she was under the make-up.

Awards

Tucked has won a host of awards for the film’s narrative from Filmfest Homochrom to L.A Outfest and Naples International Film Festival. As well as being nominated for the British Independent Film Award for Breakthrough Producer.

Tucked is truly a masterpiece, just make sure the tissues are close by!

3. I Boy (2017)

This film takes the British movies on Netflix category in a bit of a different direction. And, along with the realistic London settings, this Netflix-backed film also injects its own level of sci-fi, action and an unexpected modern vigilante.

After walking in on his friend Lucy (Maisie Williams) being attacked by a gang, Tom (Bill Milner) is shot whilst trying to call for help. When he wakes up from his coma, he discovers fragments of his smartphone have become embedded in his brain, which in turn gives him new abilities. This film does follow a superhero formula that we may be used to; but, it does have its own set of twists which keeps you interested until the end.

Stars of the show

Although this film has a lot of talented rising stars in its cast. The two leads – Bill Milner, who you would recognise from ‘Son of Rambo’ and ‘X Men – First Class’, and Masie Williams from ‘Game of Thrones’ – provide us with compelling performances. And even though Masie is still kind of kick-ass in this film, she connivingly portrays a different character to our beloved ‘Game of Thrones’ Aria.

Writer and Director

‘I Boy’ is based on a book of the same name by award-winning Kevin Brooks. The screenplay was taken on by Joe Barton, who also had a hand in writing the hit Channel 4 series ‘Humans’, so, we know we are in good sci-fi hands. Even though this was only director Adam Randell’s second feature film, he made the most of his limited budget and really got across the film’s storylines. There are even some great special effects in play too.

Although this film isn’t dripping in awards, I would still strongly recommend it as one to have on your list.

4. Only You (2018)

A lot of the movies on this British list for Netflix revolve around younger people and the coming of age struggles, but ‘Only You’ is aimed at a slightly older audience. It takes a romantic drama and spins it in such a commanding, realistic and enlightening way. It also shows that even in your 20s and 30s, there are still many life lessons to learn and even more time to ‘come of age’. In this feature, you follow a couple who meet on the off chance on New Year’s Eve and try to build on their relationship together. Don’t worry if you are not into rom-coms, as Only You throws out all the usual cheesiness that you usually get from this genre. It replaces it with a rawness that you can really tap into.

Stars of the show

Spanish actress Laia Costa, who you may also know from the award-winning Victoria (which you can rent from Amazon Prime) takes the female lead. Next to ‘The Crown’s Josh O’Connor. Their on-screen relationship is what makes this film what it is. You get sucked in by their chemistry together and both characters individually.

Writer and Director

Both the writing and directing of this film is the work of the very talented Harry Wootliff. Harry has also written for TV shows, such as ‘Waterloo Road’ and ‘Totally Frank’. For her first feature film, she achieved a pretty impressive 7 award nominations and 4 wins.

Awards

Award nominations for ‘Only You’ included a BAFTA for Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director, or Producer (Wootliff). The wins came from the British Independent Film Awards and Dinard British Film Festival, which included Best Actor (O’Connor) and Best Film. There was also a Writers’ Guild of Great Britain award for Best First Screenplay, which is very well deserved.

So, if you are in the mood for a realistic take on a modern relationship, give this one a watch.

5. The Last Tree (2019)

The first thing that will strike you about this film is the use of sound effects and music throughout the feature. It makes every scene very poignant, especially in the first 10 minutes. It’s a coming of age film that highlights the raw emotions that come with growing up in two different places.

Femi (Tai Golding/Samuel Adewunmi) goes from his happy childhood in the countryside with his foster mother to living with his birth mother in London. We take the journey with him, as he navigates from a teen to an adult, whilst working out the difference between who he is and who he wants to be.

Stars of the show

Tai Golding and Samuel Adewunmi both take the title lead in the film as Femi. For his first acting role, Golding’s performance is second to none and sets the pace for his older counterpart. Up and coming British actor Adewunmi was a standout in the older role of Femi and is an actor to look out for! Another stand out in this film was Ruhtxjiaïh Bèllènéa as Tope, who, again, is someone else to keep your eye on in future films.

Writer and Director

Like with a few of the other films on this list, both the writing and directing was by one person. This time it’s Shola Amoo, who also has another original film on Netflix called ‘A Moving Image’. The film just missed a mention on this list, but is still worthy of a watch.

Awards

This is another one of our amazing British films with a bag of nomination, including Best Sound at the BAFTA Awards and 3 wins. British Independent Film Awards – Best Supporting Actress (Ruhtxjiaïh Bèllènéa), Most Promising Newcomer (Adewunmi), and a Writers Guild of Great Britain award for Best Screenplay.

6. Storage 24 (2012)

So, this is the oldest one on the list; but, we couldn’t have a best of British list without having at least one Noel Clarke film in here. I’ll be honest, unfortunately, it’s not as good as some of his other work. But it is an entertaining watch – and as far as scary movies go, it’s a good one, with a few twists and turns, even if they’re a little predictable.

The storyline and setting are quite imaginative – I bet you’ve never seen a scary movie filmed in a storage unit before, have you? Well, in Storage 24, a group of friends find themselves trapped inside a storage unit after a suspicious classified aircraft crashes in central London. Unfortunately for the characters, it looks like whatever was being transported in the plane is trapped in the same storage unit too.

Stars of the Show/ Writer Directors

The main male lead of the film, Charlie, is played by Noel Clarke. Who not only had the original idea for the feature, but also wrote the screenplay and is one of the producers. Noel Clarke is also behind a host of other incredible films, such as ‘Kidulthood’ (2006), ‘Adulthood’ (2008), ‘Brootherhood’ (2016). And the TV series ‘Bulletproof’, among others.

Director Johannes Roberts is also no stranger to the horror film world, as he also directed ‘47 Meters Down’, ‘Dark Hunters’ and the upcoming 2021 version of ‘Resident Evil’.

Awards

‘Storage 24’ didn’t bag a lot of nominations, but it did get one for Outstanding Foreign Film at the Black Reel Awards in America. And let’s face it any nomination for a film is a great feat.

For something completely different, with a bit of gore, this is a great Friday night film. I would recommend keeping a cushion or two close by, just in case you need to hide behind them.

7. Rocks (2019)

I’ll be honest with you here; we’ve left the best till last! This film follows Shola ‘Rocks’ Omotoso (Bukky Bakray). A Hackney school student, as she navigates through school life and being sole carer for her younger brother, after her mother leaves them on their own. The acting in the film from all the young people is so inspiring and relatable.

Stars of the Show

Every single cast member in this film is a star and most of them didn’t have much if any, acting experience. Most of the main cast members were in their mid-teens at the time of filming, except D’angelou Osei Kissiedu who played Emmanuel, Rock’s younger brother, who was only 7. The talented young cast not only gave unforgettable performances but also was the main force behind the film’s narrative.

Writer and Director

Whilst promoting her film ‘Suffragettes’ in 2015, director Sarah Gavron and her team noticed that there was a lack of recognition and films about young women. In a BBC interview, Gavron explained that when they broached the idea, they wanted to do it in a way that the young people involved in the film were central to the story and film-making process. So, they started with workshops in schools around London, where they also conducted auditions to start to gather their cast.

“We had no story ideas at that point, as we wanted to discover them during the process and build the film with a team and, crucially, with the young cast.”

Two of the first actresses they cast were Bukky Bakray (Rocks) and Kosar Ali (Sumaya). They quickly developed a natural bond and their friendship became one of the central features of the film. The storylines built from there. Using the cast and team around them to shape the dialogue and narrative to the film. Thus making Rocks a collaborative effort from everyone involved.

Awards

After watching this film, it’s very clear to see why the film got 27 nominations and 5 wins in the award season. 14 of those nominations came from the prestigious British Independent Film Awards for accolades. Including Best Screenplay, Best Actress (Bakray), Best Director (Gavron) and Most Promising Newcomer (Bakray and Ali). Their wins included awards from both the Dublin and the Brussels International Film Festivals for Best Ensemble and Best Director, as well as an Online Film Critics Society Awards for Best Non-US release.

‘Rocks’ should really be on everyone’s watch list. Not only for the unique way the film was workshopped and put together but also for the amazing performance by the talented young cast.

So, there we have it, seven must-see British movies on Netflix. Obviously, there are lots of other British films on this platform for you to explore, but these were our favourites.


Thanks for reading about the best of British movies on Netflix. If you know of any you think should’ve been in the list, or can recommend any British films streaming on other platforms that we should watch, comment below.


Read about 10 hidden gems on Disney Plus HERE.

Read IMDB information about Rocks HERE.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Movie News

9 Movie Remakes That Should Never Have Been Made

Aaron Phillips

Published

on

Total Recall 2012 image
Columbia Pictures

Let’s have a look at nine movie releases remakes that definitely shouldn’t have never been made to seen the light of day.

It seems that in recent years, Hollywood have run out of original movie ideas. There has been remake after remake of films that were initially successful. As it often the case, film execs decide to cash in and remake these films for a new audience.

Now, sometimes this works. Oceans Eleven; The Jungle Book and Woman in Black are some examples that come to mind.

But sometimes it can go spectacularly wrong. This can be due to poor box office sales or being critically panned by the critics. Or it could just be the fact that the writing is utterly diabolical.

9. The Omen (2006)

If you’re going to have a pop at remaking a horror classic, then you have to bring something new to the table. The David Seltzer-penned 1976 original is a horror classic. Brooding and sinister, it doesn’t rely on shock scares. Instead, it uses atmosphere; some fantastic actors; a great script and an Oscar-winning musical score. This remake from 2006 didn’t live up to its predecessor’s brilliance. In fact, there’s no good reason why it was made. The plot follows almost the exact same story as the original film. A large majority of the scenes are practically identical, which seems pointless. You can’t blame the cast as there was some fine actors involved – Mia Farrow, Pete Postlethwaite and Michael Gambon to name a few. But their acting skills were not enough to make this movie good.

It adds nothing new to the original story; it’s just the same film with a different cast. It did make a healthy profit at the box office ($120 million), but the critic reviews were not good for the reasons I’ve mentioned. Fan-reviewed websites also have pretty poor reviews for it, so don’t just take my word for it.

8. Robin Hood (2018)

There have been a few Robin Hood movies over the years. Some are better than others, but this remake from 2018 is truly terrible. There are many factors involved and the two lead men are fine actors, but just not in this movie. Taron Egerton and Jamie Foxx have a great filmography, but their ham acting is just cringeworthy here. Blame should also go to the script, which is cheesier than a large cheese pudding. There is plenty of action sequences, but the costumes and dialogue are all anachronistic. This all adds to the clunkiness of the whole debacle. It was also a box office bomb and universally panned by critics. If you want a good Robin Hood movie that doesn’t take itself too seriously, watch Robin Hood: Men in Tights from 1993.

7. Get Carter (2000)

The 1971 original is often hailed as one of the greatest movies of all time. A lot of that had to do with the charismatic Michael Caine as the lead character. A gritty Londoner out for revenge after the murder of his brother. In 2000 the movie was remade, but this time it’s set in Seattle with Sylvester Stallone as the lead character. The premise is still the same as the original film, but Sly Stallone kicking butts in Seattle just doesn’t have the same impact. Yes, there are some cool fight scenes and Sly does a good job on the acting front. But it doesn’t have the coolness or panache of the original. It just another Sly fronted action-thriller with little substance. Critics and audiences agreed, and it was universally panned. It also lost $40 million at the international box office.

Psycho (1998)

I’m going to open with the same point I made earlier in this article. If you are going to remake a classic movie, then be innovative and do something new. Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 original is a masterpiece of creepy psychological filmmaking. Unfortunately, this 1998 remake failed to improve on any of that. Vince Vaughn played the Norman Bates character with Anne Heche playing Marion Crane. They do a fair job in portraying these iconic characters but bring nothing new to them. I guess seeing the film in colour helps bring a modern feel to it; especially as fake blood was used as opposed to chocolate sauce in the original. But interesting facts aside, it’s pretty much a shot-for-shot remake of the original.

Even the director Gus Van Sant admitted later it was an experiment to see if a shot-for-shot movie would work. It didn’t, as was proved by the critical and financial failure of the film. Then it barely made back half of its $60 million dollar budget. It was also given several Golden Raspberry awards for worst director and worst remake. This proves that you don’t mess around with Alfred Hitchcock.

5. Robocop (2014)

I remember walking into the cinema to watch this full of excitement. I left the cinema two hours later full of popcorn, but also full of disappointment. The original 1987 film is a cult classic. It’s mix of action; violence and satire made it one of the best movies of the decade. This remake from 2014 failed to hit any of those spots. Yes, it had some small elements of political satire and philosophical touches from the original, but little else. People with weak stomachs will applaud the lack of gore, but without it, the film seems too melodramatic. The updated effects make this remake look better, but the substance and excitement just aren’t there. Critics were overwhelming negative of the film too. There is also another reboot in the works. Why?!

4. The Fog (2005)

Enveloping fog has always been a good premise from a horror film. John Carpenter also thought so and made a creepy such film in 1980. The plot revolves around a mysterious fog that brings dead sailors to haunt and terrorize a Californian town. Sometimes the passage of time can allow for the special effects to improve, and it does here. But the gaps between the various grisly deaths are just dull. The characters are wooden, and you don’t end up caring when they meet their untimely demise. John Carpenter did produce this remake so it’s surprising there isn’t more depth to it. It did make a small profit at the box office but was universally panned by movie critics. If you do have to watch it just don’t engage your brain.

3. Total Recall (2012)

Another movie that tried to reboot an iconic sci-fi action film. 1990’s original was set on Mars and featured Arnold Schwarzenegger in the lead role. At the time, it was one of the most expensive movies ever made. This remake from 2012 had Colin Farrell in the lead role, supported by the brilliant Kate Beckinsale. This is another film that’s enjoyable to watch, just don’t try thinking whilst watching. There are plenty of spectacular action sequences that fizz, pop and bang, but don’t expect substance. It lacks any depth to the plot and misses the mark on the dry humour and character development that the original had. Pretty much all the movie critics agreed as well.

2. Bangkok Dangerous (2008)

Ah, Nicolas Cage. His movies in recent years have been a bit, well, hit and miss. And that’s being generous. It’s a shame as he is genuinely a great actor. But in recent years he’s picked terrible films to be in, and often dials in a performance. This remake from the Pang brothers Thai original from 1999 has none of the unique hallmarks of the original. For example, Nic Cage’s character is no longer deaf and mute like he was in the original. This seems odd as the brothers also directed this remake. A meandering plot; wooden performances and clunky cinematography make this a flop. It also received poor reviews and barely broke even at the box office.

1. Death Wish (2018)

The Charles Bronson 1974 original was a violent but successful vigilante movie. It also hit a chord with Americans at a time of increasing urban violence. It spawned several sequels, but this 2018 remake had Bruce Willis dishing out the justice. The original film had a point to make about taking the law into your own hands and did it with a visceral bang. The film was shocking at the time with its violence and rape scene, but it was relevant to explain how the lead character changed through the film. This remake doesn’t explore any of this.

It’s a brainless revenge movie that doesn’t have the same impact as the original and Bruce Willis dials in a lacklustre performance. It doesn’t add anything to the original film, and you’re left feeling empty after watching it. The whole thing seems pointless and morally bankrupt. In fact, it makes the 1974 original seem almost philosophical. It also received criticism for being released a few weeks after the Douglas High School shooting in Florida and for glorifying guns. It also barely made a profit at the box office and overwhelmingly received negative reviews.


And that’s our list of nine movie remakes that should never have been given the green light. Did we miss any? do you agree with us? Let us know in the comments below.


Read about what went wrong with the remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street HERE.

Continue Reading

Trending