Header image courtesy of Wish Dragon (via IMDb)
Netflix continues to deliver on its winning “something for everyone” formula with a mix of nature documentaries, psychological dramas, light-hearted animations, and tear-jerkers. Paul Hsiao, chart maker and film enthusiast at Movieconomist, lists his most-anticipated releases arriving on Netflix Hong Kong this June.
Even at 95 years old, broadcaster and historian David Attenborough—the voice behind the Planet Earth series— shows no signs of slowing down. His latest series for Netflix makes his message about environmental conservation even more explicit as he starts off by saying, “All is not well with our planet.” However, the documentary is not all doom and gloom, as Attenborough speaks with some of the world’s leading scientists about solutions to saving our planet and reversing the damage done by pollution. Available 4 June
Like this? Recycle, eat less meat, and volunteer to clean up our oceans!
In this fast-moving world, can millennials have both a stellar career and a fulfilling relationship? This South Korean romantic comedy—starring Jang Ki-Yong, Krystal Jung, and Chae Soo-bin—follows the story of an ambitious couple who fell in love at first sight. Some time into their relationship, however, their romance grows a little stale. At the same time, he struggles to climb the corporate ladder while competing with an attractive colleague for the same position at their company. Can love conquer all? Available 4 June
Like this? Consider What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim, another South Korean office rom-com series.
This film hits all too real for fellow insomniacs. Part psychological drama and part intra-platform advertising for Headspace, Awake tells the tale of how humanity collectively loses its ability to sleep, turning most of us into barely functional zombies after mysterious objects appear in the night sky and disable all forms of electronics.
Gina Rodriguez leads the cast as a former soldier who has to take her daughter, the only person who can sleep, to scientists in hopes of finding a cure before the world succumbs to death by insomnia. Available 9 June
Like this? Consider Children of Men, a post-apocalyptic tale set in the near future.
While we all collectively wait for the new James Bond film (or Jeff Bezos film…), Lupin Part 2 follows Assane Diop, the European gentleman thief played by Omar Sy, as he embarks on a journey of revenge against Hubert Pellegrini, his former employer who framed him. Like his British counterpart, we can expect stylish action, tuxedos, opera houses, and espionage wrapped up in a country-crossing caper. Available 11 June
Like this? Consider OSS 117: Cairo Nest of Spies, a French spy parody à la Austin Powers.
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: a young man uses three wishes from a powerful spirit to impress his crush. Wish Dragon refreshes elements of the 1990s classic Aladdin with the setting of Crazy Rich Asians. Din, a young adult making his way in the big city, finds an ancient teapot containing a magical dragon who can grant three wishes, which he promptly uses to impress his crush instead of, you know, quell geopolitical tensions.
This animation is a collaboration between Sony Pictures Animation and Tencent Pictures and features the talents of Crazy Rich Asians alums Constance Wu, Ronny Chieng, and Jimmy O. Yang, as well fan-favourite Asian-American actors like Jimmy Wong, John Cho, and Natasha Liu Bordizzo. Available 11 June
Like this? Consider Over the Moon, an Asian tale of a resourceful girl building a rocket ship to the moon.
The science is in: Hongkongers are amongst the most stressed-out people in the entire world, and that may have gotten even worse through the Covid-19 outbreak. What is the solution to that? Turn on your Netflix, of course. In collaboration with the mindfulness app Headspace, Netflix brings an interactive experience to its users, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch-style, that hopefully will reduce stress and amp up our collective feeling of being present in this increasingly stressful world. Available 15 June
Like this? Consider yoga.
Just in time for Father’s Day, blockbuster comedian Kevin Hart stretches his dramatic muscles by playing a newly widowed dad raising a young daughter. The film is based on a 2011 book called Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss & Love and is directed by Paul Weitz of About a Boy fame—another film that combines the comedy and tragedy of unconventional family situations. Available 18 June
Like this? Consider The Pursuit of Happyness, where single dad Will Smith tries to make it with his young child.
Have you ever dated anyone who seemed a little too perfect and maybe a little sus? Comedian Iliza Shlesinger has adapted a story from one of her comedy routines into a full-length comedic picture, detailing how she met the perfect guy on paper, but soon uncovers dark secrets about who he is. Good on Paper might be the summer’s sleeper comedic hit and also stars Margaret Cho and Ryan Hansen. Available 23 June
Following the outrageous first season, Naked Director: Season 2 continues the story of Japan’s burgeoning adult entertainment scene in the 1980s, seen through the eyes of an ambitious young director named Muranishi, played by a fearless Takayuki Yamada. Although there are plenty of comedic moments, the second season is likely to continue the heavy Shakespearean levels of a “rise-and-fall” narrative set up in season one. Probably best not to watch it with your parents... Available 24 June
Like this? Consider Sex Education, a Gillian Anderson-led comedic raunch.