A few recommendations on Netflix

After a week-long Netflix binge, I stumbled across some great content that dropped this year, though some titles were more high-profile than others.

Raising Dion (2019)

This series is about a single mother (Alisha Wainwright) raising her young son (Ja'Siah Young) with superpowers, which were inherited from his father (Michael B. Jordan). As a mother, she needed to educate and protect her growing son and to add to this, she had to teach her child how to harness his new-found powers whilst protecting them from a fantastical force. Sticky situation!

Actually, my excitement with this storyline was ignited 4 years ago, when Dennis Lui shared his short film “RAISING DION” on YouTube. His film is the origin of this Netflix series. It is not common to find a show or film that gives us a first-hand experience of a superhero’s early beginnings in detail from a mother’s perspective. In this show, I found it interesting how their mother-son dynamic evolved throughout this unusual story and how their character progression was tied to one another.

This show highlighted some aspects of motherhood, particularly for single parents. The show does explore other issues, but it is a 12 age rated show, so you can understand why other areas of conversation are watered down. The CGI was questionable at times but it does not change that this was an exhilarating series to watch.

 

She’s Gotta Have It (2017-2019)

Prior to 2017, this was a film written and directed by Spike Lee in 1986, it is now adapted as a series on Netflix. Here we have Nola Darling (DeWanda Wise), an independent and gifted woman who manages three open-relationships whilst self-funding her art education at university. Her compact lifestyle does become hectic and is no longer feasible. We follow her as she makes changes to better her lifestyle and boost her happiness, with the support of family and friends.

Now I need to be honest, I was slightly irritated by the narrative given to some characters, particularly those who were non-American. Nevertheless, I really liked the powerful monologues delivered by Nola and the creative scene transitions. I think her character was highly layered and complex and with two seasons, we were able to get down to the core of her character. Nola is very empowering to those who lead a lifestyle, that does not align with societal expectations and she resonates with those who are looking to regain control of their life and excel in their craft.

 

Otherhood (2019)

Three best friends and mothers (Angela Bassett, Patricia Arquette and Felicity Huffman) travel and reach out to their adult children after an unsuccessful Mother’s Day, where they felt shunned by their own sons. The reunion between them and their grown sons did not go to plan, which leads to the realisation that they had lost their main purpose as mothers. The film monitors their bumpy path of self-rediscovery whilst they repair all the damage in their relationships.

Really and truly, I recommended this film because of Angela Bassett, she is one my favourite actresses. Also, it was just refreshing to see mothers with adult children, renavigating their lives in a high-spirited storyline.