Professors from the Department of Radio, Television, Film are sharing their “can’t miss” picks for entertainment while we all work and study from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In this second installment, Nicole Franklin, assistant professor of television production, recommends:
- The new season of Ozark on Netflix, as my roots are in Missouri. This is a jaw-dropping series that keeps the audience in survival mode along with the Midwestern couple who chop it up with the locals in order to stay alive. Character dramas are my thing. And Ozark’s characters always have a decision to make–and it could go to the extreme left or right, never in-between. As my Mom (my binging partner at the moment) says, “It’s all about Darlene!”
- If you want a movie break from binging a series, Netflix’s Uncorked is true gold. This film is such a detour from the usual narrative that audiences see when it comes to films starring Black characters that are backed by Hollywood studios. Kudos to Netflix for taking a chance on writer/director Prentice Penny’s vision. Great story, exceptional cast, and top acting. Loved “the African wine thing.” I say, “More, more, more!”
- The Black Museum on kweliTV. A number of museums are offering virtual tours, and this is the beautiful story of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. By the way, kweliTV is an app you can download via AppleTV, Roku, Android and iOS devices, and Amazon Fire; the channel currently plays my feature film called TITLE VII that has been described as a “chilling dystopian thriller.”
- The new season of Killing Eve on AMC is a must. Last season’s cliffhanger was fire! The writing offers up a James Bond-like chase to prevent world destruction, but it’s led by women who are psychologically complex and just as dangerous. Sandra Oh’s character is mentally three steps ahead of everyone else, and like her, we as the audience are on a thrill ride and take delight as we experience the character Villanelle’s villainous ways.
Nicole Franklin is an award-winning filmmaker of two features, including the recently released TITLE VII, a narrative film about the rarely discussed subject of same-race discrimination in the workplace. TITLE VII was nominated for the 2017 Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival HBO-sponsored Best Feature and the 2017 St. Louis International Film Festival Emerging Director Award, and won awards for Best Lead Actress and Best Supporting Actress from the I See You Awards in 2018. Her debut film, I Was Made to Love Her: The Double Dutch Documentary, was released in 2001.
Professor Franklin is a member of the Directors Guild, Producers Guild, New York Women in Film & Television, Film Fatales and the Black Documentary Collective. Her work as both a producer and director has appeared on numerous cable and streaming networks including Showtime, BET, IFC, Nickelodeon, and Sundance Channel. In television news, she has worked on several Emmy Award-winning teams including as a video editor on CBS Sunday Morning. At Hofstra, she teaches courses on single-camera television production, introduction to digital media, and episodic fiction in television production, among others.
Last week: Prof. Carlo Gennarelli’s picks.