Get rich, furious and blown away – without leaving your couch
Shocking doccies, lives of the filthy rich, spy sagas and an insightful look at Nigeria - we’re spoilt for choice
On Becoming a God in Central Florida — Showmax
A 1990s drama with plenty of twists, pathos and humour that explores the struggle of Kirsten Dunst’s working-class water park mom who infiltrates a get-rich quick conglomerate in revenge for the devastation it has wrought on her family. Dunst is excellent as a woman who must adopt some of the nasty characteristics of her antagonists while fighting the difficult battle to not let them overwhelm her. It’s a blackly comic but relevant fable about the traps of allowing our ambitions for money to let us fall for those who claim to have figured out the easy road to making it.
Totally Under Control – Apple TV
Oscar-winning documentary maker Alex Gibney collaborates with directors Ophelia Harutyunyan and Suzanne Hillinger to produce this shocking examination of the failure of the Trump administration to handle the Covid crisis – just in time for the US election. Filmed using special technology to accommodate the restrictions of the pandemic, it’s filled with mask-wearing, righteously exasperated interviewees who are on the front lines of the US organisations and government departments tasked with battling the virus. It’s a portrait not only of the too-easy ways in which politics has been allowed to interfere with the job of saving lives, but also of the end of the American empire and the ways in which its lunatics have been allowed to run the asylum into the ground.
Bad Boy Billionaires: India – Netflix
A three-part series examining the extravagant lifestyles, dodgy practices and questionable ethics of some the filthiest-rich men in one of the world’s most populous and unequal societies. Meet the cast of the King Midas con men who have made millions of dollars at the expense of India’s poor by capitalising on its recent hypercapitalist devoted society. There’s “King of Good Times” liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya, dodgy diamond dealer Nirav Modi, and Surbata Roy, head of the Sahara conglomerate and Ponzi scheme scammer. They’re not nice but their stories are intriguing and serve as warnings of the ravages of personal greed on the lives of ordinary citizens – something we South Africans are only too well aware of.
Alex Rider — Showmax
Anthony Horowitz’s beloved and hugely popular series of young adult novels about a young James Bond-type secret agent gets a decent and thrilling enough adaptation here in a show that takes a moment to get going but then quickly provides rollercoaster thrills and spills for young and old alike. It’s not Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy but it’s a solid piece of safe, adventure-filled family fun.
Journey of an African Colony – Netflix
For the 60th anniversary of Nigeria’s independence, Netflix has released this fascinating and far-ranging look at the history of the country. In the company of narrator and host Olasupo Shasore, historian, writer and former attorney-general and commissioner for justice in Lagos state, we embark on a centuries-long journey into the turbulent, bloody past of the region and its complicated slave era and colonial history. It’s a little-known story to outsiders and provides an insightful look at the history of one of the continent’s most powerful countries and its long relationships with the rest of the world.
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