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All The Great Stuff Coming To Netflix In August

Updated: Aug 09, 2022 12:56
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The big reason to be excited about Netflix in August is the debut of the television adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s comic series “The Sandman.” Gaiman’s heavily involved in the adaptation, which looks as if it’ll draw from at least the “Preludes And Nocturnes” and “The Doll’s House” storylines.   

But even if comic book adaptations aren’t your jam, Netflix in August will see new seasons of such popular series as “Never Have I Ever” and  “The Cuphead Show.” True crime junkies can go on the run with John McAfee (“Running With The Devil”) or learn the true if sometimes weird story behind one of Argentina’s greatest bank heists (“Bank Robbers: The Last Great Heist”). Those who prefer something a little more offbeat should turn their eyeballs to a skateboarder negotiating both competitive skateboarding and gender transitioning (“Stay On Board: The Leo Baker Story”) or a jazz-inflected romantic drama (“Learn To Swim”).

Summer heat may make you want to melt into a puddle. Thanks to Netflix’s August offerings, you’re bound to find something that’ll restore your chill. 

Kakegurui Twin

August 2

Flight–When SouthJet Flight 227 goes out of control, pilot Captain Whip Whitaker (Denzel Washington) becomes a public hero when his controlled crash landing manages to save most of the passengers and crew on the flight.  But what the public doesn’t know is that Whitaker has a serious drug and drinking problem, and that he was intoxicated when the crisis occurred.  While the National Transportation Safety Board methodically investigates the crash, just how far will Whitaker go to keep his addiction problem from becoming public knowledge?

August 3

Buba–Meet small-time mobster Jakob Otto aka Buba.  After his parents die in a terrible accident, Buba and his brother Dante decide to live lives consciously free of either pleasant thoughts or attachments.  When Buba falls in love, his deliberate hardship lifestyle gets thrown off kilter…and brings some big problems as a result.  This prequel to the first season of “How To Sell Drugs Online (Fast)” tells the backstory of that season’s antagonist long before he had to worry about synthetic drugs or child trafficking.   

Trainwreck: Woodstock ‘99–The Woodstock ‘99 music festival was intended to be a 30th anniversary celebration of peace, love, and great music.  Instead, the festival wound up degenerating into an orgy of fires, riots, and destruction.  This docuseries takes viewers behind the festival scenes to show why this celebration became a disaster.  The ingredients for this cultural mishap would include a combination of corporate greed, lack of rules, and musical acts whose performances raised or lowered crowd temperatures. 

August 4

Kakegurui Twin–In this prequel spinoff to “Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler,” the viewer learns the backstory of Mary Saotome, who will become one of central character Yumeko Jabami’s antagonists.  Bright Mary Saotome is an ordinary girl who’s transferred to the elite Hyakkaou Private Academy.  Here, skill at gambling (which includes cheating) is key to advancement at the school.  However, unfortunate students who lose too much money wind up becoming involuntary housepets.  What price will Mary pay to succeed at the Academy?   

August 5

The Sandman–It’s the debut of this TV adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s classic comics series.  Morpheus aka Dream (Tom Sturridge) has the power to shape humans’ deepest fears and fantasies.  But when Dream is accidentally imprisoned for over a century, both his realm and the human realm gets thrown into chaos.  To restore order, this member of The Endless embarks on a journey across time and space to correct the problems that arose in his absence.  But his journey will also mean correcting some of his own ignoble actions.        

Skyfall–In Daniel Craig’s third outing as James Bond, the successful theft of a hard drive containing sensitive information on undercover MI6 and NATO agents leads to Bond involuntarily retiring.  An audacious cyberattack on MI6 headquarters gets Bond back into the espionage game.  The connection between the hard drive theft and the cyberattack turns out to be a former MI6 agent with a very personal grudge against M.  How can an emotionally damaged Bond succeed in saving the day?

The Sandman

August 9

I Just Killed My Dad—The new true crime docuseries from Skye Borgman (“Girl In The Picture”) may begin with a seeming open and shut case.  After fatally shooting his father Burt Templet, 17-year-old Anthony calls Louisiana 911 immediately and admits he performed the crime.  However, was the shooting an act of self-defense or premeditated murder?  The Templet family’s history muddies the investigative waters thanks to oddities such as Anthony’s disappearance at age 5 and Burt Templet’s rigging his entire house with cameras.

August 10

Bank Robbers: The Last Great Heist–You’ve seen the Mill Valley Film Festival 43 Opening Night Film “The Heist Of The Century.”  Now see the true story behind one of Argentina’s greatest bank heists.  On January 13, 2006, a group of bank robbers took 23 people hostage in a bank and were surrounded by nearly 200 police officers.  Yet the robbers got away unscathed, along with the millions of dollars and jewelry they stole from the bank’s safes.  What would make the heist particularly surreal were such things as ordering pizza and soft drinks for the hostages, using toy guns, and singing “happy birthday” to a lawyer.  

School Tales: The Series–In thisThai horror anthology series, seasoned horror directors tell tales of terror taking place at night on the grounds of a high school.  Among the stories are: cafeteria food made from human flesh, a devil infested room, and a classroom where only dead students attend class.  

August 11

Dope–Forest Whitaker helped produce this unusual coming-of-age dramedy set in the Inglewood high-crime neighborhood known as The Bottoms.  Geeky high-school friends Malcolm, Jib, and Diggy love 1990s hip hop music, fashion, and their punk band.  Malcolm even harbors dreams of going to Harvard.  But the geeky teen’s plans seriously change thanks to a request he can’t refuse regarding local drug dealer Dom’s nightclub birthday party.  When Malcolm discovers he’s been saddled with a gun, an iPhone, and a lot of Ecstasy, it’s going to take plenty of luck and fast thinking to get rid of the contraband and stay one step ahead of the people who know he has the drugs…and know where he lives.  Supporting cast includes Kiersey Clemons, Lakeith Stanfield, Zoe Kravitz and ASAP Rocky. 

Stay On Board: The Leo Baker Story–Meet competitive skateboarding icon Leo Baker.  He’s facing the pressures that come with preparing for the 2020 Olympics.  Now add to Baker’s emotional plate an increasing sense of disconnect between how the world perceives him and who he feels he really is.  This documentary follows Baker’s journey to stay balanced while navigating several incredibly gendered worlds.

August 12

Stay On Board: The Leo Baker Story

13: The Musical–Tamra Davis helms this adaptation of the all-teenage cast Broadway musical.  (“13”’s stage iteration would mark the professional debuts of Ariana Grande and Elizabeth Gillies.)  12-year-old Evan Goldman has been uprooted from New York City to a small town in Indiana.  In his new surroundings, the boy must now negotiate such big challenges as his parents’ divorce, his impending Bar Mitzvah, and his new school’s social circles.  To sweeten Davis’ adaptation, three new songs have been added to the soundtrack.

 A Model Family—In this new Korean crime drama, Dong-hwa is a cash-strapped professor on the brink of both bankruptcy and divorce.  But when he stumbles on a crashed car filled with bloodied corpses, things are about to get worse for him.  He finds a duffel bag filled with money, and takes the cash in hopes of solving his financial problems.  The trouble is, the cash belonged to a drug cartel, and the cartel’s second-in-command Gwang-cheol makes clear to Dong-hwa that he must become a drug mule for them…or else.  Worsening the situation, the police now consider Dong-hwa and his family persons of interest in their investigation of the cartel.

Never Have I Ever Season 3–The Mindy Kaling-helmed high-school romantic dramedy returns for a new season with more romantic curve balls being thrown at its lead character.  Indian-American teenager Devi has seen her social status rise from zero boyfriends to two boyfriends to a relationship with the man of her dreams.  Needless to say, she’s attracted lots of side eye from the popular kids at school.  Throw into the mix the headaches of maintaining a real relationship and the introduction of the handsome private school student Des, and let’s just say Devi’s romantic life is about to get Real Interesting..   

August 15

Learn To Swim–Sleeper film of the month is this love story set in the jazz world.  Dezi is a saxophone player who’s also a music producer.  People who know him say he has both ego and control issues.  Selma is a chanteuse who wants more from her life than to just be the pretty girl who sings.  The film switches back and forth in time as it follows the course of Dezi and Selma’s romance.  But it also features a soundtrack filled with catchy original compositions.

August 16

Untold: The Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist–The second season of Netflix’s sports documentary series begins with this look at the Manti Te’o catfishing hoax.  For the uninitiated, “Untold” looks at the real untold stories behind headline-grabbing events from the world of sports.  This segment tells how native Hawaiian linebacker and golden boy Te’o gets hit with a double tragedy in September 2012.   Both his grandmother and his girlfriend Lennay Kakua pass away on the same day, and Te’o earns a lot of public sympathy.  Then it turns out Kakua was an online creation of transgender woman Ronaiah “Naya” Tuiasosopo.  The furor over the hoax winds up threatening Te’o’s future and legacy.     

August 18

Inside The Mind Of A Cat—Does playing “Stray” not satisfy your yen for furbaby-related media?  Then take a play break with this documentary featuring cat experts explaining how a furball’s mind works.  Ignore the haters who say cats have no mind to speak of.

August 19

The Cuphead Show

The Cuphead Show Season 2–It’s the return of the animated series based on the award-winning retro animated video game.  Main characters Cuphead and Mugman continue to have misadventures roaming the Inkwell Isles.  But this season will see them clashing with several bosses from the original game including Captain Brineybeard and Baroness Von Bon Bon.

Echoes–In this thriller mini-series, Michelle Monaghan plays a dual role.  Leni and Gina (Monaghan) are identical twins who’ve kept a lifetime secret.  From youth to adulthood, they’ve enjoyed switching their lives with each other with no one the wiser.  As a result, the twins now secretly share two homes, two husbands, and a child.  When one of the twins goes missing, this carefully orchestrated situation turns into chaos.

Kleo—This German revenge series with moments of dark comedy begins in 1987, when Germany was still divided between East and West.  Shortly after Stasi assassin Kleo Straub completes a mission to kill a West German businessman, she becomes the victim of a setup that ends with her getting thrown in prison and her name permanently tarnished.  After the Berlin Wall falls in 1989, the former assassin gets released from prison.  She soon learns that her imprisonment was part of a vast conspiracy.  To get answers she’ll need to find out who betrayed her and why.  However, getting those answers and her revenge also involves avoiding capture by West Berlin intelligence officer Sven.

August 23

Chad & JT Go Deep–-Comic activists Tom Allen (aka Chad Kroeger) and JT Parr hit the streets of Southern California to spread awareness on “important issues.”  They also hit city council meetings to push for such things as a second Independence Day holiday (in honor of the titular alien invasion movie) and the right to party in the state of Delaware.  But when the duo accidentally get cancelled, they work to earn the public’s good graces and trust again.  Any resemblance between this TV comedy show and the duo’s weekly podcast “Going Deep With Chad & JT” might not be as coincidental as you might hope.

August 24

Running With The Devil: The Wild World Of John McAfee

Mo Season 1–Mo Najjar (comedian Mo Amer) is a Palestinian refugee who has fled with his family to Houston, Texas.  There, he finds himself constantly straddling “the line between two cultures, three languages, and a ton of bullshit.”  The refugee wants to get ahead in life and eventually become a US citizen, but he constantly finds himself beset by setbacks.

Running With The Devil: The Wild World Of John McAfee–John McAfee made his fortune creating an incredibly popular antivirus software.  However, the insanely rich man became an international fugitive after the Belize police considered him a person of interest in the murder of his neighbor Gregory Faull.  The fugitive software developer then asked a documentary film crew to record his evading both the authorities and a Mexican drug cartel or two.  This film is the result, as it follows the fugitive’s path through Belize to Guatemala to a boat heading for the Bahamas.  For McAfee, life on the run means carrying lots of guns, illicit drugs, and alcohol.  

August 25

Rilakkuma’s Theme Park Adventure Season 1–It’s a new stop-motion animation series about the misadventures of the titular cuddly bear.  (Think something in the vein of Hello, Kitty.)  Here, Rilakkuma and friends Korilakkuma, Kiiroitori, and Kaoru have come to an amusement park for an adventure.  However, Rilakkuma’s party has arrived way too close to the park’s closing time.  Can they squeeze a day’s worth of fun into a really tiny amount of time?  Yes, if their attempts to enjoy themselves involve an awful lot of mishaps and incidents.

August 26

Drive Hard: The Maloof Way–Meet legendary racer Sammy Maloof and his family of stunt drivers and wrenchers.  In this reality show, watch the Maloof clan use their tech expertise to create customized high tech potentially victorious race cars for their clients.  Along the way, get ready for a behind the scenes look at the worlds of professional racing and stunt car driving.

Seoul Vibe

Seoul Vibe–It’s 1988 and the Summer Olympics are coming to Seoul.  The city may be in the grip of Olympic fever.  But for the ragtag drivers and mechanics of Sanggye-dong Supreme Team, they’ve got more important concerns on their minds.  Expert driver Dong-wook and his team members have discovered some very suspicious activity at a VIP slush fund.  That hinky activity turns out to be related to a massive money-laundering operation.  As Dong-wook and friends try to stop this criminal enterprise, expect lots of visual nods to the 1980s aesthetic of hip-hop, retro fashions, and colorful visuals.

August 31

Club America vs. Club America–Club America of Liga MX is one of those soccer clubs that you either love passionately or hate with a purple passion.  This docuseries aims to satisfy both sets of viewers by taking them behind the scenes of this long-controversial club.  Aside from learning the history of Club America, see the club’s coaches and players deal with such thorny concerns as contracts, families, and fame.

I Came By–In this crime drama, Toby and Jay are rebellious young graffiti artists who specialize in painting their masterworks inside the homes of the wealthy.   However, when a zap on the home of former high court Judge Sir Hector Blake (Hugh Boinneville, “Downton Abbey”) reveals a shocking secret, Toby is forced to go on a terrifying cat-and-mouse journey through London’s streets.   It’s not sure if he or his friends are safe.

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Peter Wong

Peter Wong

I've been reviewing films for quite a few years now, principally for the online publication Beyond Chron. My search for unique cinematic experiences and genre dips have taken me everywhere from old S.F. Chinatown movie theaters showing first-run Jackie Chan movies to the chilly slopes of Park City. Movies having cat pron instantly ping my radar.