Netflix has made great horror more accessible to the masses, but the platform’s best original content deserves physical releases.
Physical media is important to many because it is a way to preserve and connect with a creative piece on a deeper level. In addition to personal accessibility, physical media can include commentaries from the film’s creatives and other bonus features that demystify the process of filmmaking. It provides cultural and historic context that a streaming release does not allow for. Bonus materials are a huge reason that a lot of people collect physical media.
But one of the biggest streaming services in the world, Netflix, refuses physical releases.
Some of their films and shows are released on DVD and Blu-ray because they are in affiliation with another studio. For example, The Haunting series was made via a partnership with Paramount and thus was able to be released on disc thanks to Paramount. (Truly, thanks, Paramount!) However, Mike Flanagan’s other Netflix release Midnight Mass was made exclusively with Netflix, and as of now, Netflix will not release the series to home media.
Mike Flanagan himself has pleaded with the company to release not only Midnight Mass but also his other films either made with or acquired by Netflix.
1. Midnight Mass
(Recommended by Frankie Lyle)
I was beyond thrilled when I heard about Mike Flanagan’s Midnight Mass premiering on Netflix. After watching (and crying over) his other shows and movies, I was curious to see how he would portray Christianity in this mini-series. It ended up being one of the most authentic representations I’ve seen in a long time.
It’s a phenomenal story with stellar performances from the entire cast that hooked me onto the show and is one that I’ll continue to recommend to anyone looking for something new to binge. The intricate and strange mysteries left enough clues for the audience to piece together but still managed to surprise in a way that was authentic to the plot.
Something odd is happening to the residents of Crockett Island, a small village where the once-booming fishing industry was smothered in the wake of an oil spill. The arrival of a new priest marks the beginning of strange miracles that amaze and terrify.
Most horror plots that feature theology tend to fall under unintentional Christian propaganda.
I struggle to think of any mainstream supernatural horror film where the solution isn’t a Catholic exorcism. It’s one of the first chances to see both the Church and its community as the ones at fault.
However critical these points may be of Christianity; Flanagan’s point wasn’t to disparage it. Instead, it offers a refreshing view of the Church for what it is: human and not without flaws.