Prize for Social Distancing?

(Above: ‘Too Hot to Handle.’ Source: Netflix)

Netflix is debuting two films and three shows today, April 17, including one – Too Hot to Handle – that seems particularly suited for the social distancing era.

Too Hot to Handle (season one)

At first blush, this eight-episode reality dating game premise seems familiar – put a bunch of attractive, horny young people on a tropical island and let nature take its course. But Too Hot to Handle has a twist: The contestants must stay away from each other, which, in this case, means not having sex or even kissing. For every infraction, there’s a penalty to pay. The prize? Making a meaningful emotional connection…oh, and $100,000.

#blackAF (season one)

Black-ish creator Kenya Barris is the force behind this eight-episode comedy about an African-American man dealing with family, race and culture in the context of newfound success. Barris stars as a fictionalized version of himself. The cast also includes Park and Recreation’s Rashida Jones and Iman Benson.

The Last Kids on Earth (book two)

Produced by Atomic Cartoons and based on a book series by Max Brallier, the 10-episode second season or “book two” follows the animated adventures of 13-year-old Jack Sullivan (voiced by Nick Wolfhard) and his suburban middle school buddies who live in a tree house, play video games, eat candy, “and battle zombies in the aftermath of the monster apocalypse.”

The voice cast includes Mark Hamill, Rosario Dawson, Catherine O’Hara, Keith David, Bruce Campbell, Garland Whitt, Montse Hernandez and Charles Demers.

Book one, also on Netflix, consists of one 67-minute episode.

Sergio

This drama is based on the life of Sergio Vieira de Mello, the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights who was killed by terrorists in Iraq in 2003.

Wagner Moura stars as Sergio, a Brazilian man with a storied diplomatic career working in the world’s most unstable regions. Just as he prepares to retire to spend time with his wife (Ana de Armas), he agrees to one last assignment in Baghdad, which has just been invaded by the US.

Netflix also has a 94-minute 2009 documentary about him, also called Sergio.

Earth and Blood

Julien Leclercq directed and co-wrote this French thriller about a man, Saïd (Sami Bouajila), who wants to sell his sawmill located deep in the woods. Meanwhile, he is unaware that one of his apprentices was forced to hide a large amount of cocaine inside the building. When the bad guys come a calling for their stash, Saïd transforms the sawmill into an embattled camp, with a rising casualty count.

The cast also includes Eriq Ebouaney and Samy Seghir. 

Earth and Blood is in French, with English subtitles.

About Larry Greenberg

A former local beat reporter and film critic, co-founder Lawrence Greenberg has more than 25 years’ experience as a writer and public relations executive.

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