As I found last year, a field of excellent books was in general surpassed by an exemplary array of streaming seasons and films. A half year of lockdown viewing (some of it diving back into late 2019) yields seven TV seasons and three movies, of which only one is a documentary, four are thriller/mystery, three are sci-fi/fantasy, and two are contemporary dramas. I rated Succession Season 2 as a flawless 10/10, six films as 9/10, and four as 8/10. In no particular order (where one or two creators “created” the end product, I’ve listed them as authors, but often movie/seasons involve too many creators to cite):
Undone by Raphael Bob-Waksberg & Kate Purdy—who would have thought an animated sci-fi head trip movie would be one of 2019’s stronger offerings?
Unbelievable—a fine team of writers, excellent direction, and stellar acting make this excellent series, a mix of nitty-gritty whodunnit and victim drama, a must-see.
Succession Season 2—every one of the ten episodes of this Shakespearian corporate drama had me transfixed … flawless execution.
Bosch Season 6—as dependable as ever but exhibiting no drop in quality, with justice-driven Harry Bosch only one of the compelling characters.
Juice by Tyson Culver & Robert Bryce—a scintillating and captivating documentary about a seemingly dreary topic, electricity … an exemplar of story and film-making.
Killing Eve Season 3—even as the dramas of Eve and Villanelle shift towards the slightly cartoonish, the visual and narrative content, and the acting, remain vibrant.
Giri/Haji—Yakuza in London … an intoxicating pleasure of plot, acting, cinematography, and even music.
Parasite by Bong Joon-ho—a weird upstairs/downstairs drama in Seoul, compelling viewing from the first frame to the coda, that justly won this year’s Oscar
Proxima by Alice Winocour—the science fiction storyline following a female astronaut training to go to Mars is in reality a prop for one of the most moving parent-child dramas I’ve ever seen.
Good Omens—Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett’s beloved fantasy extravaganza about an angel and a demon in the last days is crowned by stunning acting performances.