5. The Greatest events of World War 2 in colour
This ten-episode Netflix doco gave an interesting and at times harrowing account of the key battles and moments that defined the six-year global conflict.
It includes archival footage mixed in with ‘expert’ commentary which gave the viewer the ‘Battle of Britain’, the ‘Siege of Stalingrad’, ‘D-Day’, the ‘Dresden Firestorm’ and many other turning points. Decisions are analyzed and the actions of the big 4, Hitler, Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt continue to be debated by history.
It’s an intriguing devastating period in time that had ever lasting effects on the world for decades to come.
4. Mystery Road
Was late to the game on this one but as always Detective Jay Swann was in brooding fine form. A decapitated body washes up in local mangroves and its game on, as our favorite investigator has to work out what local Police to trust and who is dirty.
The great Callan Mulvey plays ‘Simon’, a former cop who offers Jay help, but you get the sense he knows more than he’s letting on.
It’s the wild west of the outback with six episodes of great scenery, gun battles, fractured race relations and frontier justice.
3. Godfather of Harlem
The drug lord Bumpy Johnson (Forest Whitaker) comes out of hiding trying to navigate and disrupt the tensions within the Genovese crime family. The FBI want him to squeal and cracks appear at home with his wife Mayme.
Malcom X has his own assassination plot to deal with and mobster Chin Gigante’s daughter ‘Stella’ has a dark secret that threatens everything.
It’s race riots, killings and double crosses, all draped in historical events.
Giancarlo Esposito who plays congressman Adam Clayton Powell almost steals the season with his wonderful loveable rogue portrayal of the sinful politician.
2. Narcos Mexico
The third and final season of the drug cartel wars is living up to it’s predecessors. Felix the mastermind is languishing in prison, which has left a blood filled vacuum full of killings as the cartels all fight for control.
‘La Voz’ the independent Tijuana newspaper tries to print the truth of government corruption as the drug violence runs wild and DEA agent ‘Walt’ is embedded with the Mexican Army, who drip feeds him information.
Still running on ‘Stan’ it’s been a great season so far, let’s hope they land the ending in one of those rickety cocaine filled propeller planes.
1. Operation Odessa
I just couldn’t leave this out, even though it’s been released for three years, a rollicking wild tale about a Russian Gangster ‘Tarzan’ who owned a Miami strip club in the 90’s and his attempt to buy a Russian military submarine from the collapsed Soviet Union, all to move undetected shipments of cocaine.
It all starts through his mob connections and new friendship with a local exotic car dealer named Juan Aleida. They run across Nelson “Tony” Yester, who is part of Pablo Escobar’s Medellin cartel, he was once caught with 41 passports and featured on a 1999 episode of ‘America’s Most Wanted’.
The three of them are pure entertainment as they end up being chased by the DEA and the cartel, who they’ve ripped off. It’s a crazy cast of characters with a true story that is jaw dropping and funny. This was my favorite watch this year.