Netflix Streaming Surprise: The Wave

Here’s a new “whenever I feel like it feature” that will run periodically throughout the site. I’m hooked on Netflix instant now, and though it has its problems (that’s a whole other post), there are a decently huge amount of good movies on it that you can watch for $8 a month, or whatever the hell it costs.

I do my best to try to find hidden gems I haven’t seen, but sound interesting and have a coveted user rating of 3.1 stars+ on the site (seriously, The Godfather would be like a 3.4 on the Netflix rating system). What I’ve turned up this week is a German film called “The Wave.” It’s based on a true story of “The Third Wave,” an experiment which took place in a California high school that aimed to show how a movement like the The Third Reich could get an entire nation swept up and do unspeakable things they wouldn’t normally do.

Obviously this was a very ballsy film to make in Germany, where Hitler and his brownshirts will forever be sore subjects, but it’s a must-watch for anyone who wants to understand the principles behind his rise to power and autocracy in general. In the film, the teacher starts with small steps (standing while speaking in class), but soon things evolve (wearing a white shirt every day) and then get insane by the end of the experimental week as The Wave takes on a life of its own inside, and outside of school.

Much like another German film, Das Experiment, based on the Stanford Prison Experiment, details have been changed from the original ending to make it more of a “movie.” Things escalate past the point of redemption, and while that’s not what actually happened, it makes for a powerful ending and valuable lessons. Check it out on Netflix this week.

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  1. Good find, Tassi. This sounds fascinating. People think it can’t happen here, but there is no fundamental difference between the human brain in Germany and the human brain in America. They can easily be made to do the same things for the same reasons and I see evidence of it every day. Adding now.

  2. I had to watch this film during social studies in the 8th Grade. There are tons of weird films poping up on Netflix that I thought I would never see again. The kind of films you watch and a few months later you wonder if you really saw it or just made it up.
    Try Bad Boy Bubby

  3. You missed it when it came out ? This is not a Netflix movie, it deserves to be seen in a theatre…

    Love it ! Try Good Bye Lenin also, or Soul Kitchen, not the same style, but great movies !

  4. I watched this over the weekend and I thought it was fantastic. It was a little predictable as to where it was going but it was very well done and, as you mentioned, very brave to do in Germany of all places.

    I can’t believe this movie received 65% on Rotten Tomatoes. That’s the last time I give that place any credence.

    You should definitely keep this “Netflix Recommendations” stuff going. It’s great.

    P.S. If you want to laugh your ass off for a full hour, watch Bill Burr’s standup special on Netflix now. It’s the funniest thing I’ve seen in a long time.

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