As you self-isolate during the pandemic, here are some Netflix picks—from comedies to binge-watch options to thrillers—to keep you occupied.
Derry Girls A gaggle of northern Irish teenagers brave the daily indignities and unusual intensities of life in the 1990s, as the Troubles draw to a tumultuous close, in this achingly funny and beautifully lived-in comedy series from showrunner Lisa McGee, which will dramatically expand your knowledge of Irish slang when it doesn’t have you in stitches. Haven’t seen it yet? Catch yourself on, pipe down, and change that.
The Other Guys Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg top-line this irreverent action-comedy, still writer-director Adam McKay’s best film. Come for the high-octane antics as the duo’s outmatched New York City detectives take on corrupt cops and lethal hit men while unraveling a wide-reaching conspiracy. Stay for the belly laughs, as peacocks, bushes, and Gator the Pimp all factor into one of the most punchline-laden scripts this side of Planes, Trains, and Automobiles.
Russian Doll (one season) Natasha Lyonne is spectacular in in this unexpectedly delightful riff on Groundhog Day, about a smart-mouthed New Yorker who finds herself inexplicably dying each night and resetting to the same moment at her 36th birthday party. It walks a tricky tonal tightrope, balancing melancholy with hard-hitting laughs, and manages the feat with remarkable skill.
I Lost My Body This French animated gem follows a severed hand that comes to life and, surreptitiously, makes its way across Paris and back to its owner. Beautifully rendered in service of a story that’s as strange as it is ultimately soul-affirming, I Lost My Bodypushes the boundaries of both animated and philosophical storytelling.
The Umbrella Academy (one season) Who knew the best fix for superhero fatigue could emerge from the genre itself? My Chemical Romance’s Gerard Way is the driving force behind this hyper-stylized adaptation of his punchy, peculiar comic about a dysfunctional family of superpowered individuals born suddenly, in the same moment, to women who’d previously shown no signs of being pregnant. In adulthood, the siblings (played by the likes of Ellen Page, Tom Hopper, and Robert Sheehan) drift to different corners of the world, but when they reconvene for the funeral of the eccentric billionaire who adopted and raised them, a time-traveler from the future alerts them that they have a few days to prevent the apocalypse.