Happy New Netflix Season! What’s on Netflix

stranger things

On set of Stranger Things at the Netflix Christmas event.

Now that Christmas and New Year has been well and truly celebrated and is all packed up and put away we can start turning our eye to the new year, new goals and what to watch on the telebox of an evening whilst the evenings are cold, dark and miserable.

Luckily Netflix has it covered with a huge selection to choose from and some very exciting stuff coming up.

Whats on Netflix for kids

A Series of Unfortunate Events

a series of unfortunate events

Firstly, just before Christmas Netflix sent us through a book to read, A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket – The Bad Beginning. I passed it to Alice who was between novel 3 and 4 of the Harry Potter series and she devoured it in a couple of sittings. She loved it and when I told her that Netflix were showing the series in January she was very excited. In fact we all are and it’s going to be one we all watch together.

Look out for A Series of Unfortunate Events on 13th January.

Voltron: Legendary Defender: Season 2

If you have a fan of Voltron at home then they will be delighted to hear that a second series is coming up on Netflix, watch out for the next 13 episodes as of January 20th.

Trollhunters

trollhunters

From 23/12 there are 13 hours to watch. Here’s the lowdown –

From the master storyteller Guillermo del Toro comes a tale of two worlds set to collide in the epic saga DreamWorks Trollhunters. When ordinary teenager Jim Lake Jr. stumbles upon a mystical amulet on his way to school one morning, he inadvertently discovers an extraordinary secret civilization of mighty trolls beneath his small town of Arcadia. Strong-willed and seeking adventure but wholly unprepared for the responsibilities thrust upon him, Jim is forced to take on the exalted mantle of Trollhunter, sworn to protect the good trolls from powerful enemies bent on revenge. The first human ever to hold the honor, Jim abruptly goes from fighting his way through the daily mayhem of high school to joining a war that has raged for centuries, a conflict that now threatens all of mankind and troll-kind alike. Accompanied by his closest human friends and a few key troll allies, the courageous fifteen-year-old must plunge headlong into a fantastical world of astonishing creatures, glorious cities, and fierce enemies desperate to destroy him. Suddenly destined to play a crucial role in an ancient battle of good and evil with stakes that couldn’t be higher, Jim is determined to save the world — right after gym class.

Whats on Netflix for adults

January is the perfect month for cosying up on the sofa with a mug of tea and a some good films. Netflix have some great movies and series to watch out for including:-

Coin Heist
Out on 06/01/17. An exciting film about four teens that hatch a daring plan to raise $10,000,000 when a crisis threatens to destroy their high school. Their first step is to break into the US Mint. 

Clinical

13/01/17 – A pretty female psychiatrist who, when treating a patient who has been horribly disfigured in an accident, is plagued by her own flashbacks to a terrifying attack

Have a great January

We are members of the Netflix Stream Team and receive free Netflix programming for the purposes of sharing reviews with our readers. 

Moana film review: introducing a new kind of Disney princess

moana film review

Two days into our Christmas holiday break I took the twins to see Moana the new Disney movie. I had watched the trailers at another recent movie trip and it looked good, plus who doesn’t like a Disney film?

Following the box office success of Frozen I was curious to see how Moana could possibly come even close to that success, after all Frozen is still as big today as it was when it first appeared.

The setting for the latest story is in the south Pacific, so the backdrop is breathtaking. We are taken onto an island, Motunui where a Polynesian tribe live and introduced to the chief’s daughter Moana who we first meet as a delightful toddler learning the tribe’s history from her grandmother as she tells their history in story form.

In the beginning, when there was only ocean, Te Fiti, an island goddess, emerged. Te Fiti’s heart, a small pounamu stone, possessed the power to create life and raise islands. But it also attracted monsters who tried to steal it for its creative power. It was stolen by the demigod Maui, who planned to give it to humanity as a gift. Upon removing the stone, Te Fiti was enveloped in darkness. As Maui made his escape, he was attacked by the lava demon Te K?, causing the heart to become lost in the ocean along with his magical fishhook.

Moana the toddler, searching for shells by the edge of the sea, is chosen by the ocean to receive the heart which her grandmother keeps safe for her. A few years later the fish becomes scarce, the vegetation starts to perish and the coconuts begin to spoil, Moana is urged by her dying grandmother to leave the island and reunite Te Fiti with her heart, by doing this she will save her tribe’s future.

Moana sets sail in search of Maui, a legendary demi God, in the hope of saving her people.

Moana the princess

moana film review

‘Im not a princess, I’m the chief’s daughter!’

Thank you Disney for finally creating a princess that isn’t waifer thin, white skinned and just sitting around waiting for her prince to come. Moana is a feisty, intelligent young girl who plays a great role in the day to day running of the island, learning everything from her father for the day she will one day take over. Moana has thick calves and a body that represents far more young girls out there. Moana is also trying to find her place in the world and the story focuses on her search to discover who she is.

‘The Gods aren’t the ones who make you Maui, you are!’

Her search takes her on a fabulous journey across the ocean with the demi God Maui and together they learn a lot from each other. For once there is no love interest at all, simply a story between two characters who meet, get to know one another and become great friends.

Moana meets many challenges and difficulties on her journey to restore Te Fiti with her heart but she is strong and determined, showing viewers that it can be done even if it takes a couple of times to achieve your goal.

Maui the demi God

moana film reveiw

The male main character also steps away from the usual Disney characters, Maui is huge, he is also covered in tattoos which tell his life story. He has made a huge mistake in the past, at first he doesn’t want to admit it and justifies his wrong saying it was done to help others, however, we watch him come to terms with the fact and then put the past right with Moana’s help.

I really enjoyed this film and hope it gives the twins the knowledge that they don’t need a man in their life. They don’t have to stay home, behave and wait for a man to appear but they can grow and discover themselves. They can experience life by themselves before thinking of marriage and princes. Having spent the past five years watching the girls play marriage I really hope this gives them another role play, a better role play to follow.

I learnt it on Netflix! Project Mc2, Beat Bugs and more

Netflix twins

It’s time to talk about Netflix again and what we have been watching because although it’s the summer holidays and there is lots going on there is still time for Netflix. Everyone needs some chill out time and that’s where Netflix comes in to being for us.

So what have been watching?

Beat Bugs

The twins turned their nose up when our box of goodies came through, they are going through a ‘That’s too young for us!’ stage with very clear boundaries of what is right for them and what isn’t, they are 8 *raises eyes skywards*. However I persisted, I chose a day when they were sitting on the sofa, tired from a lot of running around. I had a massive pile of ironing to catch up on, as is frequently the case, and I started to play episode 1 of Beat Bug.

What you need to know:  The cute Beat Bugs tell uplifting and life-affirming stories filled with hope and melody. They are a group of five friends who discover life’s most important lessons in their garden. The Beat Bugs live out their childhood adventures to the words and music of The Beatles. Created by Josh Wakely, Beat Bugs incorporates more than 50 songs from the Lennon/McCartney ‘Northern Songs’ catalogue and features covers by world-leading music artists.

What did we think? Well the ‘big girls’ watched the entire episode and went on to watch another straight afterwards! The stories are well told, the illustrations are gorgeous and the music fits perfectly. I think this is ideal for youngsters and although my 8 year olds watched it I think they are at the stage they want something a bit older.

Project Mc2

Project Mc2 is perfect for them, it’s about a group of school girls who dress fashionably but at the same time are a bit geeky and know how to handle themselves. A kind of girl power in the classroom taking all the best bits about girls.

I really love this program as I find it inspirational for the twins who are on the lookout for good role models, any girl who is happy to let everyone know she is intelligent is a good role model in my book. It also makes school more exciting.

The Little Prince

I have a very fond place in my heart for The Little Prince as it is one of the books I read with Thomas my eldest back in the day. We both loved it and read it more than once together. So I was very pleased to see it was on Netflix too.

What you need to know: The story is about a Little Girl and her mother who are preparing her for the world we live in, only they hadn’t bargained on The Aviator, their eccentric and kind hearted neighbour becoming part of their plans. The Aviator introduces the Little Girl to his friend The Little Prince and she discovers with them a world where anything is possible. The film features voice work by Jeff Bridges, Rachel McAdams, Paul Rudd, Marion Cotillard, James Franco, and Ricky Gervais.

What did we think? LOVED IT and I will certainly be watching this again. I may even go and buy the book again just for old times sake, thank you Netflix for bringing this beautiful story back into my life.

The Good Wife

One last shout out for mums (and dads) on another of my mammoth ironing sessions I chose to start watching the series The Good Wife and I have fallen in love with it. It’s utterly superb. It’s an American legal and political drama series. The show revolves around Alicia Florrick, whose husband and former Cook County, Illinois, State’s Attorney, Peter Florrick has been jailed after being found guilty of corruption and sex scandal. She returns back to her job as a litigator in a law firm in order to provide for her two children. It’s gripping.

Netflix mari

What’s next on my list?

Tallulah

Tallulah, was written and directed by Sian Heder (Orange is the New Black) and tells the story of a young homeless girl, Lu who lives in a van and is very independent living day by day.  A chance meeting convinces her to ‘save’ a baby from the drunken mother and she turns to the only person she thinks can help, Margo who is led to believe she is the girl’s grandmother. I have only watched the trailer below and I just know this is going to be brilliant.

Disclosure: I am a member of the Netflix #StreamTeam 2016

Newbie Netflix | What to watch on Netflix?

Netflix strem team

When the Netflix #StreamTeam got in touch and offered me a 12 month subscription in return for my thoughts over the year I was quite embarrassed … I had never watched anything on Netflix and didn’t even know how to set it up. *gulp*

Having said that I knew, via my Facebook page that there were a lot of my friends engrossed in all sorts of binge watching, Breaking Bad, Orange Is The New Black, Suits and many more. I had read the status updates and scrolled on, ‘What on earth could be so good about them?’ I wondered.

However when presented with the option, curiosity got the cat.

I wonder? I asked myself. Could Netflix be for us?

I accepted knowing I was moving into an entirely new area of entertainment, after all if I didn’t like it I could just say so and move on, right? Funnily enough Netflix allow all Newbies a month’s time free of charge to decide whether it is for you or not. So go dive in and see for yourself.

How do I watch Netflix?

I know, it’s a dumb question but if you haven’t done it before it’s a valid one. The beauty of Netflix is you can watch it on all sorts of different mediums. A laptop or computer for example, streamed live over internet. Another very common way of watching Netflix is on a tablet like an iPad. A great medium for us is our Apple TV which plugs into out television and allows us all to watch films together. Other ways of watching include Playstation and Wii which we haven’t tried yet.

What to watch on Netflix

The second big question is what should I watch, where on earth do I start with their massive library?

what to watch on netflix

For me the natural way to find the answer to that question is put it to my lovely Facebook friends, they are the ones placed up and down the country and abroad. Both male and female, all different ages and loving different genres, let’s see what they come up with…

I had a fantastic response to my call out, there are some really keen Netflix watchers out there and in order of top votes this is what came up.

7   Orange is the New Black – I’m almost finished season 1 and I agree, I am loving this

6   Sons of Anarchy

6   The Good Wife

5   House of Cards – watching with husband

4   Suits

4   Making of a Murderer

4   Gossip Girl

4   Breaking Bad – tried this for a couple of seasons, I liked it, husband didn’t.

3   Once Upon a Time

3   Pretty Little Liars

3   Grace and Frankie

Of course some people named more than one program in their comment and the other suggestions that came up with 1 vote each are

Bloodline

Blackfish

Zombie

Falling Skies

Friday Night Lights

Scandal

Kimmy Schmidt

Community LOLZ

The Blacklist

The West Wing

As you can see, I’m going to be busy for a while! But I had to start somewhere and I went for the number one spot, Orange is the New Black. I had seen a lot of banter about it and the new season was about to start too, what could possibly be so good about it?

Orange is the New Black

Well, it’s amazing! I think I’ve watched the first 6 now, sometimes binge watching them clicking on next, straight after one has finished. Think girls in prison, some lesbian annotations and clever writing. I am gripped and am a bit gutted I started this one on my own as I think husband would enjoy it too but I don’t want to go back to the start so hey ho, he’ll have to watch it on his own channel.

Which is another point. We have been given the platinum account which means I have been able to set all four of us up and we can each select and tailor Netflix to our own preferences which is a great move.

what to watch on netflix

Husband, for example, has been a bit anti Netflix, turning his nose up at the thought of something he had no idea what it was so I decided to find something for us both to watch and went for House of Cards. We’ve watched about 4 episodes now. I love Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright and they do a spectacular job of portraying top American politics and the ruthlessness needed to succeed in such a tight environment. Husband is coming round although I think he needs to find a different series to truly fall in love yet. I’m going to try The Good Wife on him next.

Children on Netflix

my little pony

This was my most unexpected surprise with regards to Netflix as the twins have their favourite programs on a tv channel, who could convince them to move?

Silly question. The minute they found their own channels set up, they scoffed at Peppa Pig which was being offered but went straight in for Mako Mermaids and binge watched God only knows how many episodes. They have also watched LoLi Rock, Barbie, Mia and Me, Odd Squad, Rainbow Rocks and My Little Pony. They have really made this subscription work for them.

As I write they are watching a family film, The Unbeatables, and we have watched other family films together which is such a lovely moment.

Yes, Netflix is working for us and excuse me if I go but husband is out tonight and I can get another few episodes of OITNB in ;)

Disclosure: I am part of the Netflix #StreamTeam for 1 year but all of the above are my own opinions.

Stick Man DVD | review and competition

Stick Man DVD

Too old for Stick Man?

Never!

This weekend we all sat down together and watched Stick Man DVD. Watching a film together is one of our favourite family pastimes for those wet and windy days or those days when everyone just needs to chill out a bit. It gives us the perfect excuse to spend some quality time together.

Stick Man did not disappoint. It’s a story we have been reading for years but haven’t looked at in a while and there’s always something endearing to watching it played out on your television screen. Did it match what you had been seeing in your head?

Yes, it did!

Stick Man is written by Julia Donaldson, author of The Gruffalo, another of our favourite films. The tale is about a journey where Stick Man gets in to all sorts of trouble and it seems the more he tries to get back home the further he travels away.

Stick Man lives in the family tree with his Stick Lady Love and their three stick children and one day he goes on an unintentional journey. His epic journey takes him through different seasons and he encounters many obstacles on his way but he’s not an ordinary stick,

He’s Stick Man, he’s Stick Man, he’s Stick Man, you see.

Axel Scheffler’s fabulous illustrations are brought to life and we enjoyed the 27 minute film snuggled up on the sofa enchanted by the little man and wishing him to get back home.

Stick Man Activity sheet

If you have a Stick Man fan then please download the activity sheet which has lots of wonderful games to entertain.

Stickman-activity-sheet-forest-holiday-print_Page_1

Win a Stick Man bundle

Stick Man DVD

Win a Stick Man DVD plus two puzzles, a hardback copy of the book and a keyring, all in a cloth Stick Man bag. All you have to do is complete the Raffelcopter below and one person will be chosen at random a week from today.

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