Once final exams are in your rear-view mirror, it’ll be time for you to take a well-earned breather. Enjoy winter break with some of the movies and TV your law school faculty and staff will be watching. You deserve a mental break!
Andy Spalding, Professor – “I recommend watching all four previous Daniel Craig James Bond movies at home, on Amazon, in the order in which they were made — “Casino Royale,” “Quantum of Solace,” “Skyfall,” and “Spectre” (don’t corrupt the process by watching any prior Bond movies, which are horrifically dated and largely devoid of redeeming social value) — and then go to the theater to watch “No Time to Die.” I’ve seen it four times now (and cried every time).”
Alex Sklut, Associate Dean of Students – “”Why Women Kill‘ on Paramount Plus. A dark comedy about the lives of three women in three different decades (60s, 80s, and now). The writing, acting, set design, costuming, and cinematography are awesome – a real hidden gem that I can’t believe has not gotten more attention!”
Kathy Greenier, Director of Emerging Careers – “I’ll be binge-watching Taste the Nation with Padma Lakshmi over the Winter Break. Season 2, just released earlier this month, is a four-part holiday edition highlighting the food, culture, and holiday traditions of indigenous and immigrant communities in America. From Korean New Year to the real story of Thanksgiving, Lakshmi brilliantly uses food to showcase our history and the diverse groups that have shaped our country.”
Jessica Erickson, Professor – “Succession! If family businesses and board dynamics sounded dull in class, this show brings them alive. It’s addictive!”
Joel Eisen, Professor – “My recommendation: The Great British Baking Show (9 seasons of 10 episodes each, available on Netflix). This genial competition surrounds your living room with the warm smell of baking, and what’s not to like about that? In each episode, amateur bakers from around the UK take on signature bakes, navigate through “technical challenges” and create amazing “show stoppers” to impress two judges who are veterans of British TV. You’ll find yourself cheering for the contestants, who are lovely, interesting folks who all just happen to bake really well. Yes, one of them departs the show each week until a final episode in which one of three is crowned that season’s winner. But what really what makes the show tick is that the competition is done in the most gentle way and the affection the contestants show for each other is genuine and heartwarming (sometimes even extending to helping each other in a pinch – imagine seeing that on an American competition show). There are also two hosts who amuse us with light slapstick. Binge on this and you’ll be flinging about Britishisms like “stodgy,” “claggy,” and the like in no time flat. And the baking itself will make you hungry for patisserie, bread and biscuits (cookies to us) . . . just in time for the holidays. It’s a warm, gooey treat that’ll make you forget all your cares. Now, on your marks, get set, BAKE!”
Joyce Manna Janto, Director of Public and Instructional Services – “I would recommend everyone watch Anatomy of a Murder. It was ranked as the 7th best courtroom drama by the American Film Institute. Fun legal trivia about the movie – it was written by a lawyer who based it on an actual murder case he defended. In the movie, the judge at the trial is not an actor. Joseph N. Welch was a lawyer in real life who represented the U.S. Army in the televised Army-McCarthy hearings in 1954.”
Jim Gibson, Professor – “I’ll be watching the new season of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia — awful people, awfully funny!”
Kathy Salandro, Library Acquisitions and Serials – “We have watched this show (three seasons with 6 episodes each) twice now. It is such a lovely show that any and all ages should enjoy. Unfortunately if you don’t have ACORN TV in the US you will have to pay for it – but it is worth the $6.00 per month. The Detectorists (ACORN or Pay per episode on Amazon Prime). Smartly written comedy with delightful, eccentric characters filmed in the beautiful English countryside. It also has a very catchy theme song!”
Janice Craft, Director of Professional Identity Formation – “I’ve four recommendations for students, each from a different streaming platform.
First, I recommend “Squid Game” on Netflix. Many students may have watched the series by now. For those who’ve missed out, nothing pairs with eggnog quite like a dystopian survival thriller.
Second, “Nine Perfect Strangers” on Hulu. From what I can tell, people ran hot and cold with this series. I’ll admit that some of the storylines are overwrought, but I’ll watch most things starring Melissa McCarthy. (Speaking of Melissa McCarthy, she and her husband produced the documentary “Bob Ross: Happy Accidents, Betrayal & Greed” on Netflix, which I’d also recommend.)
Third, “The Shrink Next Door” on Apple TV+. It’s based on a Wondery podcast by the same name. The show stars Paul Rudd, which is really all the endorsement it needs. If you don’t have Apple TV+, I recall that the podcast is good. If you go the podcast route, you may want to check out other Wondery true-crime faves like “Dirty John” and “Dr. Death.”
Fourth, “Vick,” an ESPN 30 for 30 documentary about Michael Vick. It’s a thoughtful two-part documentary that asks important questions about race, redemption, and forgiveness.”
Chiara Giorgetti, Professor – “I am happy to recommend “Call my Agent” (or in French, 10%), all seasons are available on Netflix. For full disclosure I have seen it all already, it was so much fun to see the dynamics of an actors agency in Paris, spot my favorite French actors (Isabelle Huppert, Juliette Binoche, Charlotte Gainsbourg and even Monica Bellucci and Sigourney Weaver) and of course keep up my French!”
Alex Clay Hutchings, Student Services Librarian – “I have been catching up on American Horror Story (10 Seasons, with the 11th on the way). I recommend the most recent season — Double Feature. One half vampires, one half aliens, all gory, campy fun! Some seasons are definitely better than others. Asylum, Murder House, and Cult are my favorites. Enjoy the show, boils and ghouls!”
Paul Birch, Computer Services Librarian – “Preston Sturges’ 1941 classic, “Sullivan’s Travels” (1941), is at or near the top of my Favorite Films Life List. I only sort of know why. At first blush it’s a good movie about moviemaking. Beyond that, it’s a breezy, yet plausible, exploration of the interplay between comedy and tragedy in life and in art. Fans of the Coen Brothers’ O Brother Where Art Thou? should consider it a must-watch, and not only because the O Brother took its title from a reference in the earlier movie. (While you’re at it, watching or re-watching O Brother wouldn’t be a half-bad idea either!)”