Over time I’ve become less adventurous with my movie choices. Usually what I really crave is to just sit down on the couch and watch something familiar, that will make me laugh – or at least feel good.
When I’ve been in the mood to branch out, though, I’ve found some really great movies. Theoretically, I love a great movie (I’m just not always in the mood to watch one), so I figured I’d share my recommendations in case you’re in need of one for your next movie night!
The Talented Mr. Ripley
I watched this about a year ago, and almost every conversation I’ve had about movies then, I’ve thought about bringing it up. It’s considered an intellectual thriller, so it’s not exactly scary, but it’s ever so slightly chilling, in a way that holds your attention throughout the movie. I had NO idea what was going to happen next – the storyline was so original, and the filmmaking style was beautiful and artistic. (If you need further reason to watch it, I give you Matt Damon AND Jude Law.)
Manchester by the Sea
When this came out, I heard good reviews about it, but it didn’t sound like something I’d ever watch. I did want to know what it was about, though, so I looked it up on Wikipedia. I ended up reading the entire plotline! After I read it, I was so intrigued, I just had to watch it. It’s so touching in a real-life way – not sad for the sake of being sad, but just genuinely showing human emotions. Even that last description doesn’t do it justice, because I honestly don’t usually enjoy dramas, but trust me – this movie is moving and deep. There’s also a secret that’s so large and overwhelming, you’ll be captivating wondering what it is, and once you find out, you’ll be thinking about it nonstop. I also bawled like a baby after it ended… and I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve cried at a movie. I think it touched me particularly because it brought up so many emotions related to my current life stage. Regardless – don’t be turned off if you hate movies that make you cry! The acting is great and the characters seem so realistic. Don’t miss it.
Introduced to me by my French teacher, this true story is about the relationship formed when a good-humored, dexterous lower-class man begins taking care of a strong-willed, wealthy, cerebral handicapped man. Their contrasting personalities but friendly attitudes make for a light-hearted movie about difficult circumstances, and how even unlikely friendships can be life-changing. Bonus: great soundtrack! (Subtitled).
Best in Show
Whit and I had no idea what to expect from this totally off-the-radar satire, but it was much better than we would have imagined. If you enjoy dry humor like in the movie Clue, you will love Best in Show. We were impressed with the acting – the cast (many of whom are familiar) nailed all the various, stereotypical characters. I couldn’t believe how entertaining the actors made such dull people seem! Weird and off-beat and very quotable. “Where’s Bizzy-bee???”
This is one of those movies that I only had to see once, and then I replayed it in my head over and over again, reliving every detail. The ending is SHOCKING. At least, it was to me. It’s based on a book and I have to say, if you like the movie you should definitely also read the book. It gives a much more full picture of what’s going on back on earth, and also what’s going on in Ender’s mind. This is a story about the government using genius children to prepare for war, which is somewhat of a heavy topic, but I really appreciate how the author commends the creativity and bravery that sometimes only children have. FYI: Not scary at all – I love sci-fi but have a hard time finding movies that don’t freak me out, now that I deal with anxiety.
[Bonus Pick! TV Series]
Big Little Lies
If you haven’t yet watched this series, go to Amazon, get a free trial of HBO, and start watching. Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley (from Divergent) bring to life young moms trying to get their children through Kindergarten, when something very terrible happens in their community. The scenery is gorgeous, the soundtrack compelling, the characters are so realistic, and every episode reveals more hints and brings up more questions about the crime that took place. My husband jumped in halfway through an episode, and was so sucked in that he had to finish the rest of the season with me. It’s addicting!! (I need to watch the second season!)
What have you watched lately that’s stuck with you??