Quaranstream Diary

Pretty much wherever you are in the world, you’re spending far more time at home than ever before. Here in Kent, we’re on lockdown so I’ve been streaming up a storm the last 4 weeks. Here are my top picks for your continued quaran-stream’s, let us know what you’ve been watching too!

Teen Spirit (2018) – Currently streaming on Amazon Prime

Teen Spirit

I had never seen or heard of this film before until it randomly popped up as a suggested in Amazon’s incredibly frustrating user interface system. Elle Fanning plays Violet Valenski, a teenager growing up in a rural village somewhere on the Isle of Wight with her Polish single mother. When an X Factor like contest arrives on the island, she seizes her opportunity to escape, and step out of the shadows. It was a strange but stylish film, and Fanning was incredibly convincing in the title role. This and All The Bright Places have me thinking I should be paying more attention to her.

Watch if you want a coming of age/Cinderella story that actually feels almost realistic and focuses on a character from a working class background. And the songs are great too.

Marvellous Mrs Maisel (2017 – current)
Seasons 1 – 3 currently streaming on Amazon Prime

The Marvelous Mrs Maisel

Why oh why did I wait so long to start this absolutely charming, delight of a show. I’m already thinking of re-watching it, because quarantining in a small flat is made so much easier watching Midge gallivant through 50’s New York. The writing is smart as a whip, and I should have known, coming from Amy Sherman Palladino of Gilmore Girls fame. Rachel Brosnahan is an absolute find as the titular Mrs Maisel, but the entire cast list shines, and it’s no surprise it’s become a multi award winning hit for Amazon.

If for nothing else, watch it for possibly the best costumes on TV in the last 5 years

Snatch (2000) – Currently streaming on Amazon Prime

Snatch

I’d avoided Guy Ritchie films for a long time, as British and gangster are two synonyms I want nowhere near my film viewing. That changed when I had to see The Gentlemen at the start of this year and was shocked to find I really enjoyed it and laughed. Multiple times!

Snatch was somewhat similar, and whilst I missed the gloss of the newer Gentlemen, I can see why Snatch was such a big hit, and wow, I think I often forget what a brilliant character actor Brad Pitt can be. Vinnie Jones is surprisingly brilliant too.

Watch to see Brad’s amazing accent and THAT body.

Cat People (1942) – Currently streaming on BBCiPlayer

Cat People

Simone Simon is adorable in the lead role of Irena, a Serbian born New Yorker hiding a dangerous secret about herself. Both leads are charming, and whilst I was chuckling at the fact she managed to be gifted a kitten, an engagement ring and a marriage to a charming and wealthy New Yorker without so much as kissing him and I can’t get a guy to call me back in 2020, the story managed to keep itself moving through a pacey 70 minutes. For a modern audience, there’s not quite enough shocks and bangs, and there’s no visual pay off a la An American Werewolf, but the film still manages to hold up.

Watch if you want a break from 2020 (who doesn’t?) and fancy dipping your toe in to the world of classic cinema.

Ugly Betty (2006 – 2010) – Seasons 1 -4 currently streaming on Amazon Prime

Ugly Betty

Sometimes you just need a background show whilst you’re doing what feels like the 100 th round of washing up, or hanging out your laundry. Ugly Betty has quickly become that for me. I’ve not revisited the show since it ended in 2010, but it’s amazing how many of the storylines and scenes I can remember. It’s a show that I don’t think could exist a mere 10 years later, and there are issues with xenophobia, transphobia and abhorrent clichés around eating disorders and sexuality. But for 2006, it felt ground-breaking and it’s fun to revisit what now feels like a much simpler time.

Give it a go if you want to remember Becki Newton (Amanda)’s comic genius and the insane clothing we used to call fashion.

Hook (1991) – Currently streaming on Netflix

I’ve managed to avoid this film for the last 29 years, as it just looked naf and as a younger kid – like a boy’s film. Oh, I was wrong, and yes world, you were indeed right. What a charming delight of a film. Williams is lovable even when he’s the angry Dad, and the kids were all adorable. I honestly expected to hate every moment, but I was completely entranced.

Watch if you want a dose of heart warming nostalgia, or if like me, you managed to miss this one – it’s truly worth giving a go.

Upcoming over the next few weeks are Future Man, Dietland, Catastrophe and DEVs, as well as a trip to the Bonghive with Snowpiercer. Remember to reach out on Twitter if you have something to recommend! 

Clare Brunton

Ex film teacher and frequent couch potato. I try and see at least one new release a week, but I've somehow got to 30 without having seen The Godfather?