Hi friends. If you’re like me, you’ve got an endless list of movies that you want to watch. Films you know you’d enjoy, if you just had the time to watch them. Maybe you’ve forgotten about them. Or maybe it’s just been easier to rewatch your favourite sitcom for the hundredth time while aimlessly scrolling on your phone all evening. I get it, believe me.
This lockdown, I’ve made a list of those films I want to actually watch. I’m carving out time to sit down and watch some of them, so that I’m not only entertained, but I feel accomplished as well. And luckily for me, SBS On Demand has a ton of the films I’ve had on my To Watch list for so long.
Here are 10 great movies at SBS On Demand for those looking for lockdown entertainment, or anyone else looking for something great to watch.
Leon: The Professional
Director: Luc Besson
Starring: Jean Reno, Gary Oldman, Natalie Portman, Danny Aiello
Directed by Luc Besson, this critically acclaimed crime drama and thriller stars a very young Natalie Portman as Mathilda, a 12-year-old orphan whose family is murdered by a dirty DEA agent. Joining forces with Léon (Jean Reno) a reluctant Italian hitman, Mathilda becomes his protégée and sets out to avenge her family’s deaths. If you’re watching this one, a good one to pair it with is another Besson classic, La Femme Nikita.
Director: Noah Baumbach
Starring: Greta Gerwig, Adam Driver, Michael Zegen
If you loved Lady Bird and Greta Gerwig’s recent adaptation of Little Women, it’s time to watch Frances Ha. Written by and starring Gerwig, Frances Ha follows a New York woman whose life is catapulted into chaos when her best friend moves out, leaving Frances to bounce from apartment to apartment. This is a story about chasing your dreams and trying to make it all work, even when hope is dwindling.
Let the Right One In
Director: Tomas Alfredson
Starring: Kåre Hedebrant, Lina Leandersson, Per Ragnar, Henrik Dahl, Karin Bergquist, Peter Carlberg, Ika Nord, Mikael Rahm
If you’re into horror, this one’s for you. This 2008 Swedish flick is a classic, with the US adaptation Let Me In following in 2010. It follows Oskar, a young boy who’s being mercilessly bullied and dreams of revenge. He falls in love with a strange girl named Eli… who can’t stand the sun, doesn’t eat, and needs to be invited into a room before she can enter. Sound familiar?
Run Lola Run
Director: Tom Tykwer
Starring: Moritz Bleibtreu, Franka Potente, Ludger Pistor
Think Sliding Doors if it was a German action thriller. After receiving a call from her boyfriend Manni, who’s just lost 100,000 Deutsche Mark on the subway that was supposed to be delivered to a local criminal, Lola is given 20 minutes to come up with the money and save her lover. This is fast paced and fun, watching three alternatives play out as different variables affect the outcome.
We Need to Talk About Kevin
Director: Lynne Ramsay
Starring: John C. Reilly, Ezra Miller, Ashley Gerasimovich, Tilda Swinton
In this tale based on the Lionel Shriver novel of the same name, Tilda Swinton stars as Eva, a mother struggling to love her strange son, Kevin. Alternating between flashbacks and the present, Eva reflects on her efforts to love and raise her first-born while reckoning with the aftermath of his horrific act.
Director: Nadine Labaki
Starring: Zain Al Rafeea, Yordanos Shiferaw, Boluwatife Treasure Bankole, Nadine Labaki, Kawthar Al Haddad, Fadi Kamel Youssef, Cedra Izam, Nour el Husseini, Alaa Chouchnieh, Joseph Jimbazian, Samira Chalhoub, Farah Hasno, Elias Khoury
Arabic for “chaos”, Capernaüm follows Zain, a 12-year-old boy who has run away from his negligent parents. Hardened by life on the street, when Zain is arrested for committing a violent crime, he sues his parents for giving him life.
Director: Garth Davis
Starring: Dev Patel, Rooney Mara, David Wenham, Nicole Kidman
Based on an incredible true story, Dev Patel stars as Saroo. At 5 years old, Saroo is separated from his family on a busy train in India. Hundreds of kilometres from his rural hometown, Saroo is placed in an orphanage and ultimately adopted by an Australian couple, played by Nicole Kidman and David Wenham. Twenty-five years later, with the support and encouragement of his parents and girlfriend (played by Rooney Mara), Saroo returns to India in search of the family he lost.
Director: Phillip Noyce
Starring: Roy Billing, Kenneth Branagh, Jason Clarke, Deborah Mailman, David Gulpilil
Set in 1930s Australia, Rabbit-Proof Fence follows Molly, Daisy and Grace, three young Indigenous girls who are brutally torn away from their mother and family. Placed thousands of kilometres away, they are to be trained as “domestic staff” but promptly escape. Can the girls survive the distance and evade the people trying to find them in order to return home?
Director: Tom McCarthy
Starring: Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, Rachel McAdams, Stanley Tucci, Michael Keaton, John Slattery
The 2016 Best Picture Oscar winner and packed with an all-star cast, Spotlight is the true story of the Boston Globe journalists who exposed the cover-up of sexual abuse within the Roman Catholic Church. A year-long investigation brings light to decades of hidden sexual abuse, sending shockwaves and revelations through the church around the world.
The Skin I Live In
Director: Pedro Almodovar
Starring: Antonio Banderas, Elena Anaya, Marisa Paredes, Jan Cornet
After his wife is killed in a flaming car accident, scientist and plastic surgeon Dr Robert Ledgard (played by Antonio Banderas) tries to create perfect, synthetic skin that can withstand fire, cuts and any other damage. As he experiments on the flawless and mysterious woman he keeps locked in his lavish mansion, the scientific community begins to raise eyebrows.