Spring is right around the corner. So befor it gets warm and sunny out (and maybe a bit rainy), why not stay home and cozy up with a good film, show, or read? We suggest you do just that, and we have some recommendations. This week's collection of suggestions from Team Windows Central includes the 2018 Academy Award winner for Best Picture, a quirky British sitcom, and a classic Canadian TV series.

Everything included here is worth a look, but if nothing grabs your attention there are plenty of additional suggestions from weeks past at the link below.

More media recommendations from Windows Central

Movies

Green Book

Recommended by Al Sacco, managing editor

At last month's Academy Awards, Green Book took the award for Best Picture. And for good reason; it's an excellent movie, and probably my favorite film of 2018.

It's the story of an African American musician in the U.S. during the early 1960s, played by Mahershala Ali, who goes on tour across the American South. Before leaving New York City, he holds a set of job interviews for a driver to get him from gig to gig but to also protect him for the problems he is almost guaranteed to face in the southern states, due to his race. Viggo Mortensen, a tough Italian handyman of sorts, gets the job. And the embark together on an eventful road trip.

The movie is simultaneously uncomfortable, funny, heartwarming and smart. And both Mortensen and Ali are authentic and memorable. I loved it, and I bet you will too.


Thor: The Dark World

Recommended by Richard Devine, reviews editor

The chronological journey through the MCU continues ahead of Endgame's arrival in April, and this week it's back to Asgard for Thor's second outing. Following on in the aftermath of the first Avengers movie, The Dark World sees Loki facing the music and Asgard in new peril, this time from the Dark Elves. And of course, Thor doing a lot of fighting.


TV

Trailer Park Boys

Recommended by Cale Hunt, staff writer

If you're Canadian, chances are you've heard at least a whisper of Trailer Park Boys, the cult hit TV show that debuted in 2001 and is still going today in some form or other. It's a mockumentary type show, where a film crew follows around Ricky, Julian, and Bubbles as they attempt every season to get their lives together and stay out of jail.

They've lived all their lives in Sunnyvale Trailer Park, where Jim Lahey, accompanied by his assistant (and lover) Randy, is the Supervisor. Lahey also happens to be a wicked drunk, and the boys can usually play him as they go about growing dope and other unlawful activities. The show is crass, uncensored, and often over the top, but in every episode there's a message of friendship, family, and freedom.


Blackadder

Recommended by Rich Edmonds, staff reviewer

Blackadder is a series of four BBC pseudo-historical sitcoms, showcasing British comedy at its finest. Originally aired in the 1980s, the series starred Rowan Atkinson and Tony Robinson as anti-hero Edmund Blackadder and Baldrick, respectively.

Each series was set in a different historical period, with the two protagonists accompanied by different characters. Should you enjoy dark humor and witty liners such as you'd find in Fawlty Towers, you'll enjoy Blackadder.


Books

Utopia for Realists — Rutger Bregman

Recommended by Dan Thorp-Lancaster

I started reading Utopia for Realists by Rutger Bregman, a Dutch historian and journalist, this week and I haven't been able to put it down.

It's amazing to me how Bregman lays out how a number of "progressive" policies are more feasible than either side of the political class (at least here in the U.S.) would have you believe and, indeed, are natural progressions of a path humanity has been on for hundreds of years. After all, ask someone in the 14th century to describe their ideal world (read: utopia) and they would likely come up with a list of things we enjoy today: unfettered access to food for most of the population, the virtual eradication of common deadly diseases, and a whole host of other ideas that seemed unattainable for most of humanity's history.

Bregman touches on everything from topics like the enormous benefits of universal basic income (UBI) for lifting people out of poverty (did you know President Nixon, of all people, was very close to passing a UBI bill?), to shorter work weeks and more. Bregman doesn't lay out an exact blueprint, but the basis of the book lies in envisioning what our generation's aspirational "utopia" should be, backed up by plenty of data showing that we can afford these policies in ways that satisfy both the right and left of the political sphere.


Return of the Native — Thomas Hardy

Recommended by Asher Madan, contributing news writer

The Return of the Native illustrates the tragic potential of romantic illusion and how its protagonists fail to recognize their opportunities to control their own destinies. It's one of the best novels by English novelist and poet Thomas Hardy. The way he surprises the reader with unpredictable characters has to be experienced.

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