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Lucky Chan-sil, The Velvet Underground and other titles to watch this weekend

From Todd Haynes' rock documentary to a time-hopping Spanish series, here are our viewing recommendations for this weekend

A still from 'Lucky Chan-sil'
A still from 'Lucky Chan-sil'

Call My Agent (Netflix)

Along with the Hindi remake released last week, four seasons of the original Call My Agent are also on Netflix. We carried an ode to Andrea Martell, the ruthless and all-feeling heart of ASK: “Andrea — who is somehow, simultaneously the calmest and the most frenzied of agents — treats her clients with the weariness of an experienced babysitter. At work, it is remarkable to watch her toy with her celebrity offspring, but doubly so to see the empathy Cottin’s character builds with her clients. Never supplicating, never out of her depth, Andrea is perpetually able to reach and stay on their level. It is stunning to watch her lie back in the bed of a hotel room and build relatability with an actor who wants to have an affair, as well as one who is moments away from biting a dog.”

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The Velvet Underground (Apple TV+)

Todd Haynes' film on the Velvet Underground is his first documentary. It's a triumph, as we wrote: “This density of information and sensory overload is bracing: the thrill comes from the feeling that you are missing something with every passing frame. Popular film today just doesn’t take these kinds of risks, which is why it’s worth celebrating that Haynes could slip in something like an experimental film under the guise of a band biopic. This is also apt, because Warhol and his associates were at the vanguard of experimental cinema at the time the Velvets were emerging.” 

The Time It Takes (Netflix)

In this Spanish series, Lina (Nadia de Santiago) and Nico (Alvaro Cervantes) have broken up after nine years together. The story is told from the perspective of Lina, her heartbreak and the healing process. The surprise element is the format of the show: 10 episodes of 11 minutes each and the cues are in the episode titles. The first episode, titled "One minute in the present, and 10 minutes in the past", shows Lina rewinding to the past, how she first met Nico at a resort where both were working. With each progressive episode, as we go through the ups and downs of their relationship, Lina is spending less and less time in the past and emerging into the present. The title of the last episode—"Ten minutes in the present and one minute in the past".

Lucky Chan-sil (MUBI)

A 2019 South Korean romantic drama written and directed by Kim Cho-hee. It stars Kang Mal-geum as Lee Chan-sil, a producer whose faces a crisis when her mentor dies. Simultaneously, she starts to fall for a French teacher. There's plenty of charm in this sprightly film, particularly the conversations about cinema.   

The Crossing (Netflix)

This 10-minute short by Ameen Nayfeh is part of the Palestinian Stories collection launched on Netflix last month—32 movies and documentaries which highlight the plight of Palestinians. The Crossing shows three siblings at an Israeli checkpoint. They haven't seen their grandfather in four years and now he's in hospital. He lives on the other side of the separation wall which runs through the West Bank and divides Palestinian communities. The siblings have the permits required to cross over but the Israeli officer at the counter is turning down every application. But the Palestinians are not ready to give up so easily.

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