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Barack Obama Loves ‘Fleabag’ Just as Much as You Do: See His Favorite Films and TV of 2019

Obama's eclectic end-of-year list includes many of your favorites, plus lesser-known titles like "Diane" and "Transit." No Tarantino here, however.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge, "Fleabag"

Phoebe Waller-Bridge, “Fleabag”

Amazon

Adding to the growing chatter of end-of-the-year lists on Twitter among critics and moviegoers, Barack Obama has shared his picks for the best films and TV of 2019. His eclectic list features plenty of talked-about favorites, such as “Booksmart,” “The Irishman,” “Little Women,” and “Parasite.” He also names “Fleabag,” “Unbelievable,” and “Watchmen” as his favorite television series. See Obama’s full Twitter list of film and TV favorites below.

Obama clearly knows his movies. On the film side, he includes some lesser-known, perhaps more cinephile-inclined favorites, from Kent Jones’ somber drama “Diane,” starring Mary Kay Place, to Christian Petzold’s revisionist World War II film “Transit,” Jia Zhangke’s cosmic “Ash Is Purest White,” and Ciro Guerra and Cristina Gallego’s crime epic “Birds of Passage.” Obama also is a fan of “The Last Black Man in San Francisco,” a mid-year release from A24 that has quietly appeared on critics’ 10 best lists as well.

However, you won’t find Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” or Todd Phillips’ “Joker” — arguably the two most hyped-about mainstream movies of the year — on his list. Looking back at the former United States President’s 2018 top-10 list, Obama tends to zig where others zag when it comes to movie-watching.

He also heralds distributor Netflix’s “American Factory” among the year’s best documentaries, a film that he and his wife Michelle Obama partnered on via their production company Higher Ground. Currently, you can watch a special conversation with the Obamas about the making of the film, which centers on a Chinese billionaire’s exploitative factory positioned in post-industrial Ohio, within an abandoned General Motors plant.

A biting portrait of the plight of working-class America and its clashes with tech-forward China, “American Factory” sits among the shortlisted frontrunners for the 2020 Best Documentary Academy Award. In his list below, Obama also champions the documentary “Apollo 11,” another Oscar frontrunner, as well as “Amazing Grace,” which didn’t make the 2020 shortlist.

 

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