Everyone knows the best thing about winter break is giving your brain a reprieve from all the reading, writing, and cramming you’ve been doing for the past few months. And what better way to tune out than to tune in to some Netflix? Once you’ve caught up on all your Breaking Bad and Orange is the New Black binge-watching, check out some of the lesser-known but incredibly entertaining shows and movies available on Netflix right now.
1. Short Term 12
Short Term 12 is a drama that follows the trials and tribulations of the employees and residents of a group home for troubled teenagers. It was written and directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, who based the film on his own experiences living in a group home as an adolescent.
2. The Imposter
The Imposter is a gripping documentary in which a French 16-year-old approaches a Texas family and claims to be their son who has been missing for three years. Based on the title, you can guess how things turned out . . .
If you like intense dramas like Homeland, you’ll love MI-5, an espionage drama from the United Kingdom, in which head officer Harry Pearce leads a band of top-notch spies.
4. The Trip
If you have an incurable case of wanderlust, you’ll love The Trip, a comedic mockumentary following two Brits as they set off on a foodie road trip across England.
5. Jane Eyre
Have a penchant for literary classics and period pieces? Look no further than the 2011 version of Jane Eyre, starring Mia Wasikowska in the title role. It’s dark, moody, and painfully romantic.
6. Being Human
If you’re all about Twilight and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, check out Being Human, a TV drama in which three Boston roommates—who happen to be a ghost, a werewolf, and a vampire—struggle to conceal their identities and survive in the real world.
7. Ugly Betty
You might’ve been too young to have appreciated this show when it originally aired on ABC, so there's no time like the present to catch up on it. Ugly Betty follows the misadventures of an awkward but optimistic young girl who’s doing her best to earn her stripes at a glossy fashion magazine. Heartbreak and hilarity ensue in equal measure.
8. The Forsyte Saga
Before Downton Abbey there was The Forsyte Saga, an epic miniseries that charts the course of the Forsyte clan in Victorian England (some folks even claim that this show is—gasp—better than Downton Abbey).
Alphas is a highly entertaining series that will satisfy even the most rapacious of sci-fi obsessions. It follows a team of individuals who have extraordinary neurological abilities and are tasked with solving high-profile crimes.
10. Stuck in Love
If you’re both bookish and a music lover, you’ll adore Stuck in Love. Greg Kinnear plays a successful author who is obsessed with his ex-wife and pushes his son and daughter to achieve greatness in their own writing. This thought-provoking movie has one heck of a screenplay and an even better soundtrack.