Rejoice! The season of hunkering down is upon us. The time has come to switch your swim shorts for your classic cashmere knit, and bid summer a fond farewell. But fear not – there are plenty of great new shows ready to keep you feeling cosy as the autumn nights roll in.
Netflix has once again cast its net wide to reel in some of the world’s best films, TV shows and documentaries — as well as bringing us more of its award-winning original content. Here’s what should be on your must-watch list for October 2020…
David Attenborough: Life On Our Planet, 4 October
The film that finally convinced Sir David to join Instagram (setting a new record by reaching 1 million followers in 4 hours, 44 minutes) hits Netflix this month and, as well as offering breathtaking footage of our natural world, highlights the troubling way in which humans are treating it. Produced by Silverback and WWF, the documentary sees Attenborough reflect on his extensive career, the moments that have defined it, the worrying changes he has witnessed and, most importantly, the solutions we can implement to save our planet.
The Haunting of Bly Manor, 9 October
The second instalment in The Haunting anthology series, which started with 2018’s phenomenally popular The Haunting of Hill House, relocates the ghostly action to 1980s England in a tale inspired by the supernatural works of Henry James. Following the death of his au pair, Henry Wingrave (Henry Thomas) employs young American nanny (Victoria Pedretti) to look after his orphaned niece and nephew. Joining the staff at the historic Bly Manor, she soon realises that all is not as it seems. Following the American Horror Story format, returning cast members include Oliver Jackson-Cohen and Kate Siegel.
Social Distance, 15 October
The first in what is undoubtedly going to be a tidal wave of pandemic-related content coming our way over the next few months, Social Distance is an eight-part series that shines a light on our shared experience of the strangeness of the past few months. Interrogating alternately the strength of the human spirit in times of crisis, our growing reliance on communication technologies to connect with each other and the emotional toll of being separated from our support networks, Social Distance was conceived and created entirely during lockdown and provides an elegant snapshot of this unique moment in history.
The Trial of the Chicago 7, 16 October
One of numerous attempts Netflix is making towards awards season success, this timely retelling of a peaceful protest gone wrong has been deemed worthy of a cinematic release two weeks before it hits the streaming service. Telling the story of a demonstration at the 1968 Democratic National Convention that devolved into a violent clash with the police and National Guard, the film follows the protest’s organisers – Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Tom Hayden and Bobby Seale – as they are arrested for inciting violence and subjected to one of America’s most explosive trails. Written and directed by Aaron Sorkin, an all-star cast including Michael Keaton, Eddie Redmayne, Mark Rylance, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Sacha Baron Cohen make this a must-see.
Rebecca, 21 October
Another film devised to take home the gongs, this new adaptation of Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca sees Lily James take on the role of the unnamed protagonist opposite a brooding Armie Hammer as Maxim de Winter. Arriving at de Winter’s family seat – Manderley – after a whirlwind romance, the naive but well-meaning heroine sets about finding her feet – only to be haunted by the memory of de Maxim’s deceased wife Rebecca and the determination of the estate’s sinister housekeeper Mrs Danvers (Kristin Scott Thomas) to keep her memory alive. Whatever your opinion on period dramas, this promises to be one of the most lavish and beautifully rendered films of the autumn season.
Notting Hill, TBD
Yes, we know you’ve seen it a million times but who couldn’t do with a little floppy-haired Hugh Grant charm right now? Throw in Julia Roberts’ mega-watt smile, some light relief courtesy of Rhys Ifans and that ionic Horse & Hound scene and you’ve got yourself an autumn date night sure to brighten even the dullest of days. If lockdown part two does materialise this month, we know exactly which movie we’re lining up.
Looking to bring a little more culture into your home? Take a look at your new favourite coffee table book…
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