We spent 2021 watching a bunch of underrated content on OTT platforms, all of which we’ve reviewed every Friday!
This year has been spectacular for all things content on OTT platforms as well as those movies that we got to see on the big screen! And as much as we liked keeping up with what was trending this year aka Inside Edge, Sooryavanshi, the last season of Lucifer and Spiderman – No Way Home, we loved watching movies and TV shows that not too many people were talking about like Kadakh, Father, I Care a Lot. and Kaagaz.
While some of these movies and TV shows were a hit and miss, we found some real gems that we’d definitely recommend! Every Friday, we reviewed something old but new and made this exhaustive list of underrated content for you to check out!
Have a look!
Holidate – Netflix
Starring Emma Roberts and Luke Bracey, Holidate says nothing about anything! The title holds the meaning of the entire movie because there’s literally nothing more to it except gender stereotypes that are so passé. What are these lead protagonists doing between New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day? We have no idea because the film doesn’t delve into either of their lives.
If you’re looking to watch American girl meets prince, gets swept off her feet, leaves everything behind, and marries him for a happily ever after, then A Christmas Prince trilogy is right up your alley. This holiday rom-com trilogy leaves you with a zillion questions because the plot has massive flaws throughout the series.
Directed by Tobi Baumann, Over Christmas is an amalgamation of everything that one sees in holiday-themed movies and while that’s a genre we know and love, it feels implausible in this one. Split across three episodes, this TV series touches upon familiar topics like drama within the family, a struggling singer-songwriter feeling like a failure, and everything coming together because it’s Christmas
Given the rarity of chic flicks on OTT platforms, A Nice Girl Like You sounded so promising but turned out to be an immature and half-baked adaptation of a self-help book. It’s far too superficial to ever touch upon anything real, including its one-dimensional narrative on men, women, and sex.
I Care a Lot. has all the makings of a perfect thriller that leaves you mind-boggled throughout the 1 hour 58 mins! Just when you think you’ve understood the film, it leaves you with yet another, “One sec, whaaat!” It’s so smooth that it’s terrifying especially when it’s tapping into elder abuse and dementia.
After watching Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler together in Just Go With It, Murder Mystery seems to fall a little flat as far as The Spitz’s chemistry is concerned. This movie is lightweight which makes it perfect for days when you want to curl up in bed and watch something that doesn’t require you to use your brain.
Love Hard isn’t the modern tale it pretends to be. Starring Nina Dobrev and Jimmy O. Yang, this movie is hard to love if you like movies that make sense. It’s yet another ‘boy-meets-girl, followed by drama before they lived happily ever after’ kinda unrealistic romantic comedy that a lot of us enjoy watching, especially if it comes with a holiday theme! But even movies from this genre need an upgrade if they’re catering to a younger audience.
Directed by Dany Boon, Stuck Together is a hilarious-because-it’s-so-relatable medley based on 7 families living as tenants in one building on the rue de l’Humanité during the lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic! This movie also has a very clear theme throughout – humanity!
Having lived in India, there isn’t a single human who hasn’t dealt with ‘do din baad aana’ each time they’re in touch with anything sarkari, aka rigged bureaucracy under the tag of democracy. Satish Kaushik unveils this painful and neverending process in Kaagaz.
You won’t Mind the Malhotras if you like relatable sitcoms with deadpan humor. Remember those neighbors who keep trying to one-up you? Yes, Mr. and Mrs. Malhotra complain about that too! This TV show tugs at your heartstrings because it’s that relatable and it gives you a glimpse into how The Malhotras deal with daily petty issues too.
An extremely overpopulated country congested with those who feel zero shame in having big families but feel shy or ashamed at the mention of birth control; Yes this is precisely the crux of the problem and also the plot of Helmet! In spite of leading with such a promising concept, this film turned out to be an absolute snooze fest!
This movie handles one’s journey towards self-acceptance rather well. Set in rural Kildare, Ireland in 1995, this story highlights homophobic abuse, confusion about sexuality and gender identity, friendship, and self-acceptance over and above the terror that we call being a teenager in high school. Dating Amber is a great example of going above and beyond simply to fit in, whether it’s at home or with your peers.
Jamun tells the story of a middle-class doctor who deals with the after effects of Parkinson’s disease and the helplessness that comes with being a father. This movie gives us brilliance in the form of Raghubir Yadav! The frustration, helplessness of a father struggling to make ends meet has been portrayed so well in his expressions and his body language.
Directed by Florian Zeller, The Father is based on his own French play, ‘La Pere’ where we’re welcomed into Anthony’s mind, perceiving things the way he is at any given point throughout the 97 minutes. It gives us a fragmented narrative right from the start which leaves us wondering whether it’s a tale of Dementia or his family is playing mind games with a mentally ill person!
Directed by Rajat Kapoor, Kadakh on Sony LIV weaves a tale around adultery, mutton, a dead body and a house party. It tells the story of a couple that hosts a Diwali party while hiding a dead body in their house. This a-moral unconventional dark comedy will make you feel bad each time you laugh.
Tuesdays & Fridays comes across as a movie with no personality of it’s own. If Kal Ho Na Ho and No Strings Attached had a baby, it would look like this film! With a terribly promising trailer, this film bit off more than it could chew in one hour 46 minutes because it fails to commit to any one concept.
Like a Boss is something you’d enjoy watching if you keep logic aside for a while. It’s a run-of-the-mill movie that tells the story of two friends navigating their way through adult problems in the middle of a half-baked plot, one that makes no sense in the real world. It sounds like a Dear Diary entry of a 13-year-old.
A film that leaves you confused from start to end, Beckett is a man on the run thriller that circles around the politics in Greece. Directed by Ferdinando Cito Filomarino, this movie is about political agendas, conspiracies and incredulous last-minute heroics.
Disney and Pixar’s original feature film, Luca is a beautiful and colorful animated tale of two sea monsters wanting to explore the world with the help of a Vespa. This movie covers themes like honesty, acceptance, friendship, and freedom in a very simple yet intricate manner. An animated fairytale set in a seaside town on the Italian Riviera, Luca reminds you what it feels like to be carefree and full of wonder.
This Alicia Keys-produced Netflix release tells the story of an aspiring singer who is roped in by her best friend to go on a dreamlike escape to Mauritius to sing at a resort after her first break as a singer kind of falls apart. It’s a predictable rom-com about realizations, closure, falling in and out of love, and a beach vacation on a budget. Think of it like an all-inclusive rom-com minus the feels.
Misbehaviour is a real story about a women’s liberation group protesting against the concept behind beauty pageants that indirectly tells women that their worth comes from unrealistic standards of beauty. It also shines a light on the oldest running beauty pageant created by Eric Morley in the UK in 1951 that pits women against each other and judges them based on how flawless their skin is, the shape of their bodies, and pretty much nothing else. Over and above this, it talks about geopolitical agendas in the ’70s in the most subtle manner.
Directed by Ricardo Trogi, this French Canadian movie is terribly relatable in spite of being fiction. It makes one wonder if we’re suffocating children with multiple hobbies, classes, and unnecessary pressure in the name of giving them the very best in a society so obsessed with success and being picture-perfect.
Uno Para Todos aka One For All is a Spanish feature film about a classroom full of students burying their feelings and values that a teacher passes on while tackling these feelings. Directed by David Ilundain, this film weaves a beautiful story around forgiveness that’s conveyed via a feel-good storyline and a videogame. It talks about holding on, letting go and everything in between.
A crime thriller set in the early ’90s, The Little Things is directed by John Lee Hancock and was written by him over 3 decades ago. This movie highlights how the little details can make or break pretty much anything including the search for a serial killer. It also broods over the psychological turmoil that detectives face while working a case.
Good on Paper is written by Iliza Shlesinger who also plays the lead in the movie and a lot of what happens in this film is based on someone Iliza dated years ago. Directed by Kim Gatewood, this film is more of a thriller than a rom-com, which makes me wonder just how traumatizing this must be for people who get catfished in the name of love. The stand-up acts in this movie are extremely relatable if you identify as a girl from the 21st century.
Fatherhood keeps it real with new-age parenting, dirty diapers, a baby that just doesn’t sleep, a perfectly imperfect father-daughter relationship, and the struggles of a single working parent. It’s a real-life story of Matthew Logelin who lost his wife in 2008 and had to raise his daughter, Madeline by himself.
Directed by Manjari Makijany, Skater Girl on Netflix takes you through multiple barriers like caste, lack of education, and exposure that children face in rural areas like Khempur, a village in Rajasthan. These barriers keep them from dreaming and becoming something more than what they’re surrounded with and that’s precisely what Skater Girl touches upon by creating opportunities for children to thrive in.
There comes a moment in your comfortable and luxurious nine to five, drinking iced coffee and having hot bhajiyas, watching the rain from your couch life when you begin to wonder just how privileged you are. Watching movies like The Mauritanian do that for us. Directed by Kevin Macdonald, The Mauritanian tells the story of Mohamedou Ould Slahi‘s fight for freedom while he’s detained and imprisoned for 14 years by the U.S. Government without a single charge.
Based on a real story, The Blue Miracle tells a beautiful tale of hope, family, and putting one foot forward every day. It talks about a father entering the world’s highest-paying fishing competition to save his orphanage.
Written and directed by Lee Isaac Chung, Minari is the story of a Korean-American family chasing the American dream. Minari is not your run-of-the-mill, an immigrant family struggling to adapt to the American ways, story. This Oscar-nominated film is a beautiful tale of resilience, family, and running after the American dream.
Ahaan captures everything you’d expect from a film that tackles disorders like OCD and Down’s Syndrome. In a country full of stereotypical cinema, you rarely come across thought-provoking films that leave you feeling too many things. Nikhil Pherwani‘s directorial debut film, Ahaan does just that!
Which of these have you watched already? Tell us in the comments below.
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