By: Justin Jang
Photos by: Sarah Mardjuki
This Thanksgiving, whether you’re travelling or lounging around at home, take some time to relax and view some of the finest that Netflix has to offer. Plus thanks to Netflix’s newest update, you can now download all of these shows and movies on your phone or tablet to watch on the go!
If you want to laugh but feel at the same time: Master of None (Seasons 1 & 2)
By this point you’ve likely heard of this critically acclaimed series, perhaps because of Aziz Ansari and Lena Waithe’s Emmy-winning episode, or maybe just by word of mouth. Even if you haven’t, it’s still definitely worth watching for its exceptionally realistic portrayals of life as a millennial, dating in the modern age, mediating bicultural identities, and finding one’s sense of purpose. This show is at once deep, hilarious, and teary all at the same time. If there’s any show I had to recommend from this list, it would have to be this one.
If you just want to laugh: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Seasons 1, 2 & 3)
Tina Fey’s newest television project, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, stars Ellie Kemper as a bubbly Kimmy Schmidt trying to rediscover the world after she was trapped in a bunker for fifteen years. The show has the comedic stylings of 30 Rock, with Jane Krakowski playing a leading role, as well as numerous cameos from different members of the 30 Rock ensemble. If you love and miss 30 Rock or just want to laugh for a couple of hours, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is the show to watch.
For the cook/foodie in all of us: Chef’s Table (Season 3)
Chef’s Table is a documentary masterpiece that not only depicts some of the most famous restaurants in the world, but also takes an introspective look at the lives of famous chefs and the paths that they took to gain culinary fame. Although Seasons 1 & 2 are both amazing in their own right, Season 3 takes a wonderful depth of cuisines from lesser-known areas and highlights them. A Jewish ramen star in Japan, a Korean Buddhist monk bringing her cuisine to Le Bernardine, and a Russian chef attempting to rediscover his country’s lost culinary heritage are all on display in the third season of Chef’s Table.
For the politically charged: War Machine (2017)
Brad Pitt, in his role as General Glen McMahon, satirically shows the futility of the American war in Afghanistan. War Machine shows the complications of bureaucracy in fighting an endless war for a not-so-clear reason. If you need a dose of politically-charged dialogue to instigate some interesting Thanksgiving banter, consider watching War Machine.
If you want to try something new: Okja (2017)
Bong Joon-Ho has been making sleeper hits for years, although a majority of his movies pander to a majority Korean audience. His international debut with Snowpiercer was stonewalled by a now-disgraced Harvey Weinstein, so it is timely to celebrate Bong Joon-Ho’s work by watching Okja (as well as the fact that Snowpiercer is currently unavailable on Netflix). Watch Okja to see Bong Joon-Ho’s Korean cinematic roots blend with an international cast in this tumultuous journey of a little girl and her genetically-engineered super pig.
For those who love to drink: Somm (2013)
This comprehensive documentary follows four sommeliers and the people closest to them as they attempt to pass the exam to become master sommeliers. Imagine taking Map of the Modern World, multiplying it by a scale of ten, and throwing wine tasting into the mix. You can see the raw ambition, fear, and contemplation that go into studying for such a prestigious exam and how it affects these sommeliers’ relationships with their friends, family, and loved ones. If you love to drink, love wine, or are just curious about another test that you could take, try watching Somm.