Film critic Caryn James picks the biggest deals to watch this January.
Kaleidoscope – Kaleidoscope
It’s the timeline of your choice in this heist drama. Giancarlo Esposito stars as Leo Pap, the mastermind of a gang that tries to rob Roger Salas (Rufus Sewell) of $7 billion held in his New York City vault. The eight episodes are designed to be watched in any order you choose (except the finale), so that different viewers perceive the potential crime in different ways.
Kaleidoscope is available now on Netflix internationally
The Lying Life of Adults – The Lying Life of Adults
Based on Elena Ferrante’s 2019 novel, this Italian-language series is a coming-of-age story set in Naples. The period is the 1990s, when teenager Giovanna (Giordana Marengo) overhears her father telling her mother that their daughter is ugly, just like his sister Vittoria. Giovanna seeks out Aunt Vittoria (Valeria Golino, The Morning Show), whose social status is much lower than that of her rich brother. Of course, neither aunt nor niece are ugly, inside or out, but Ferrante specializes in bringing to light the wild and hurtful comments that can change a life.
Lying Life of Adults is now available on Netflix internationally
Copenhagen Cowboy – The Copenhagen Cowboy
A surreal thriller, Nicholas Winding Refn’s series premiered at the 2022 Venice Film Festival. The series’ six episodes are set in Refn’s hometown of Copenhagen, where a woman named Miu (Angela Bundalovic) has been sold to the owners various who were able to harness her powers as a genie. Now seeking revenge on those who abused her, she travels through the city’s underworld, where one person she encounters wonders if she is a ghost and another wonders if she is the devil.
Copenhagen Cowboy is now available on Netflix internationally
The Rig – Rig
This big-budget supernatural thriller is set on an oil rig in the North Sea, far off the Scottish coast. Just as the crew is about to return to earth, a mysterious fog envelops them, cutting off communication with the outside world, causing chaos. Lights flicker, fires erupt, and the crew – played by Emily Hampshire (Stevie Budd in Schitt’s Creek), Martin Compston (Line of Duty), Iain Glen and Mark Bonner among others – are justifiably terrifying.
Koala Man – Koala Man
This adult animated comedy is a superhero satire set in an Australian suburb where an average middle-aged dad named Kevin puts on a Koala mask, straps a homemade cape around his shoulders and goes into battle. His main targets are pesky people who break the rules. Hugh Jackman voices Big Greg, the egotistical head of the City Council and Kevin’s boss at his day job at the office, and Sarah Snook (Shiv on Succession) is Kevin’s sometimes exasperated wife.
Koala Man premieres on January 9
The Traitors – The traitors
Just before Christmas, this high-concept reality show based on a Dutch format was a mega-hit in the UK. The format is: in a Scottish castle, contestants face challenges, all the while lying and cheating as players named The Faithful try to root out the Traitors and avoid being “killed” by them.
The Traitors premieres on January 13.