I’m a Movie Watcher – Best Flicks I’ve Seen Lately

TV really doesn’t draw me in so much. I have some shows that I really enjoy but honestly I have a hard time tuning in week after week. What really gets my entertainment gears going are movies.

Movies range from a little over an hour to upwards of three but the same thing rings true for them all… You get the whole range within that time period – the plot starts, thickens and the movie is resolved upon ending (unless it is a series, but whatever).

In the long run, movies are much shorter time investments than television shows and that is something I can really get behind. But don’t get me wrong. I’m not one of those jerks who is too good for TV. I do have my shows I like even if I don’t always watch them.

One huge exception is Big Brother – every summer I apparently have 3 hours a week exclusively for that load of BS but I just can’t help myself. I loves it so much and in however many years it has been on, I’ve never, ever missed an episode. (but I don’t get all crazy with the live feeds and all of that expensive nonsense).

Because I really take to heart recommendations of others with similar interests to mine, I thought I’d share with you the 10 movies I most enjoyed the past month or so. Some are oldies and others are fairly new DVD releases… some I’ve seen just once and others I watch whenever I get the chance.

Butter_Screenshot

BUTTER – 2012

The Gist: Butter carving is sort of a big deal in the Midwest making appearances at state and agricultural fairs. The Picklers are picture perfect movie couple played by Jennifer Garner and Ty Burrell (the dad on Modern Family) who have reigned supreme over Iowa butter scene for years. But things change and wifey finds herself in charge of maintaining the family legacy. Enter an opportunistic stripper (Olivia Wilde) and the cutest little adopted girl to mix things up and put a few kinks in the plan.

Why You Should Watch It: I’ve seen that this movie is getting so-so reviews which is a part of the reason I avoided it for a while. Basically you need to like comedies that are a bit dark and weird. If those two things appeal to you, I really think you’re going to dig this film. Plus, I absolutely love Olivia Wilde in this film and her interactions with the little girl are great. Be sure to stick around during the credits because some of the outtakes (especially between the girl and her adopted dad) are hilarious!

The_Elephant_Man

THE ELEPHANT MAN – 1980
The Gist: The Elephant Man is based on the true story of Joseph Carey Merrick (often incorrectly called John). Joseph Merrick was a man with large and abnormal growths and thick hide-like skin on his body, most notably his face, torso and right arm (although his left arm and I believe man bidness were perfectly normal). He became known as the Elephant Man on the sideshow circuit where he made his living. In the film directed by David Lynch, the fabulous John Hurt is hidden away as our Elephant Man and Anthony Hopkins gives an incredibly keen performance as the doctor who takes Merrick in and gives him a life free from abuse and shame.
Why You Should Watch It: While many movies based on true life garner an awful of criticism regarding authenticity, I’ve never heard such a thing stated about this particular film. While the film is said to very closely resemble the memoirs upon which it is based, it does portray Merrick as being weaker (I presume emotionally) than he was in real life. Whether or not you’re a fan of black and white films, you really must give this movie a go.
Girl_Next_Door_Screenshot

THE GIRL NEXT DOOR – 2004

The Gist: Here we’ve got a really, really good kid who gets good grades, raises money to bring Cambodian geniuses over to America and wants to one day be both a Georgetown graduate… and president of the United States. When our good boy meets the girl next door, who just so happens to be an adult film star, his life gets turned irrevocably around and hilarity ensues.

Why You Should Watch It: This movie is funny and silly and, to be honest, I actually started it by accident. But once I started watching it I remembered just how funny it is and one single reason to watch it all the way through… and that would be the scene above. I also love rewatching an older flick to see some current and notable stars in teeny roles (Olivia Wilde before hooking it in Butter). Secondly, and almost as importantly, the soundtrack is awesome. Proof’s in the pudding… bam and double bam. Tolja.

Goon_Screenshot

GOON – 2011

The Gist: Doug Glatt is a goon. What he lacks in intelligence he makes up with brawn. He’s a bouncer who frequently kicks the snot out of patrons. At a local hockey game Doug’s bestie taunts at the opposing team when one of the players decides to haul himself out of the penalty box and into the stands. Doug hands the fellow his rear with a knock out punch and later gets sought out to join the team. Although he can’t skate, Doug becomes the hometown team’s enforcer. This film is kind of, sort of, based on retired pro hockey player Doug Smith’s real life.

Why You Should Watch It: This is a film that I had to convince others to watch and once completed I always heard “That was such a great movie!” I’ll be the first to admit when I saw Seann William Scott I kept thinking “I freaking hate Stifler, I freaking hate Stifler” which I know sucks to do to an actor. But because I love Jay Baruchel who stars in and co-wrote the movie I had to give it a go. You’ll love what a standup guy Doug is and you’ll find yourself rooting for him as he beats the crap out of everyone on the ice. Plus, I’m going to be checking out more Seann William Scott movies in the future – sorry buddy.

Heathers_Screenshot

HEATHERS – 1989

The Gist: In high school popularity is the only thing. At Westerberg High the girls every girl wants to be and every guy wants to bag are the Heathers – Heather Duke, Heather McNamara, and Heather Chandler. Winona Ryder plays, Veronica an EMO who is suddenly becomes a part of the clique and gets herself a hot, if a bit disturbed boyfriend (Christian Slater). When things in the group start to go south between Veronica and the head Heather, a blue hangover cure sets this movie, and the falling apart of the Heathers, in motion.

Why You Should Watch It: Heathers is like mixing up The Breakfast Club and Dr. Strangelove and saying “There you go!” Distinctly dark humor, the film really portrays popularity and its effects on the population of a normal 80s high school. On the plus side, my favorite Heather, played by Shannen Doherty, is in itself a great reason to check out this awesome film.

Logans_Run_Screenshot

LOGAN’S RUN – 1976

The Gist: The future is a place where everyone is young, beautiful and happy. Emphasis is placed on needs and wants and everything is readily available at your finger tips. Logan is a police officer whose job is to chase runners. What are these runners running from? When the crystal in your hand goes from blue to red, you’re summoned to a ceremony where you don an anonymous robe and ascend into the sky until you explode like a cheap firecracker. When Logan’s light turns red, he and the woman he loves decide to make a runner themselves.

Why You Should Watch It: Movies about the future are always entertaining. Movies about the future made in the seventies are freaking awesome. The future is a “world beyond imagination” with strange futuristic cars on train tracks, nevermind the weird glowing crystals in people’s hands. The special effects are so 70s and everything is so serious that you’re gonna love this one.

Looper_Screenshot

LOOPER – 2012

The Gist - In the future time travel is possible but incredibly illegal. Crime syndacites are taking full advantage, however, with loopers. Hitmen in the past are hired to be at a specific place at a specific time when baddies and enemies of the mob of the future suddenly appear directly in front of them with a bag on their head. The target is killed and their pay day is silver bars strapped to the back of their “job”. Things go south for Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) when encounters his future self (Bruce Willis).

Why You Should Watch It: Now because I don’t watch a lot of TV I didn’t see many commercials for this so when the DVD hit about 15 minutes in I was all “whoa?” So many movies are the same premise with a little change ups here and there, but this plot feels fresh and new. While Gordon-Levitt’s makeup, especially eyebrows, sometimes seemed heavy handed and inconsistent (and that REALLY got on my nerves) he does a bang up job as a young Bruce Willis. He’s got the voice and mannerisms down like you wouldn’t believe. The story is great but the performance of young Joe is alone worth a watch.

Skin_Screenshot

SKIN – 2008

The Gist: Apartheid was a racial segregation enforced by the government, made official by general election in 1948. While blacks were the majority, their rights were limited in favor of white supremacy. This movie is based on the true story of Sandra Laing, a girl born to white parents and classified as “coloured”. After being sent to school where complaints were lodged against her attendance, her family fights to get her reclassified as “white” despite her appearance.

Why You Should Watch It: From what I understand, the film is incredibly accurate. You see Sandra’s life being raised as “white girl” in a remote village where her parents are shop keepers, all up to the point that she is old enough to make decisions for herself. Her life choices set in motion unforseen heartache and pain. Sandra’s life was hardly private – her parents battle to get her reclassified had her in the spotlight from a young age, and quiet, sweet Sandra proved always the class act. While¬†the movie has its downs, overall it is definitely worth the watch.

Super_8_Screenshot

SUPER 8 – 2011

The Gist: Produced by Steven Spielberg, this film is all about young teens who are in the process of making their own movie. Joe is the sherriff’s son who recently lost his mother. His buddy is a young film maker and needs assitance to make a zombie flick before a contest deadline. School kids are cast, including Alice a tough, daring, and underage driving 14 year old that Joe has been crushing on. While filming a scene at the train depot, the train goes off the tracks and things start to get weird.

Why You Should Watch It: This movie is oddly reminiscent of Goonies – which reminds me I really need to watch that one again soon. Joe and Alice are connected through more than just a crush and their budding relationship amid all of this crazy supernatural goings on is sweet. Things aren’t all G rated and there are some pretty heavy things going down. Sometimes I forgot that this is a movie set for the younger scene. I think this one is definitely worth the watch of adults out there.

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TOTAL RECALL – 2012

The Gist: Now I’m not entirely sure what year this is supposedly set in, but I know it is in the distant future. A huge global war has destroyed so much of the planet that only two areas are habitable – The United Federation of Britain (UFB) and The Colony (Austrailia). The UFB is where all the posh and fancies live and the Colony is rough, tough and totally blue collar. Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell) is a factory worker that experiences strange dreams and isn’t happy with his job. He goes to a place called Rekall where they implant ficticious memories. While in the chair and about to receive memories of a spy, special ops style dudes bust down the door and start shooting errbody up. Douglas, not being an idiot, decides – much like Logan – to run.

Why You Should Watch It: While I’ve never seen the original, I’ve been informed that this one is loads better. I totally love any movie that is set in a future that is all hover cars and crazy. The special effects are really, really great and I love the dirty, edgy backdrops that are the future. I think Farrell’s acting is top notch in this one and while it’s 90% action and 10% plot, I still think it’s great for a movie night when you don’t want to have to figure out who or what the baddie is, read subtitles or really think much in general.

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And those are my top ten as of lately… What good flicks have you seen lately? Suggest in the comments!!

I often link up at these parties.


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