They say there are two sides to every story. There are two sides to every movie too.
Every movie recommended this week definintely fits that bill. Each movie is flawed, yet manages to give the audience a mere nugget of its overall goal. That goal, whether it be to entertain or emote, is reached through a series of mistakes and missteps, but ultimately fallen on the audience as intended.
Feeling pent up about post-college life? Ever been in the witness protection program? (Probably best not to comment on that–if the answer is yes.) Ever cleaned up the remains of a dead body? Well, there’s a movie this week that will let you live vicariously through each of these situations.
Check out this week’s picks.
Popcorn Movie of the Week
Did You Hear About the Morgans?
Did anyone see this movie? A lame opening weekend, a mediocre box office take, and a completely invisible release on DVD made Did You Hear About the Morgans?a complete bomb. I suppose you can look to the fascination with Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie, but not anyone else a the reason. The Hugh Grant charm finally wearing off is another good option, but no. The real reason is The Morgans just isn’t that great a movie. It has a few laughs, a few exepcted ones actually, but the plot is completely see-through, and most of the time it just seems so ridiculous that most viewers will laugh and groan at its absurdity. When you get down to it though, for a lazy Tuesday night in, it’s still worth the watch.
The Whole Nine Yards (HD)
The Whole Nine Yards was a fresh and surprising comedy upon its release. What seems like a formulaic screwball comedy has so much more going for it. Bruce Willis pulls the same type of comedic genius that De Niro did in Meet the Parents (a.k.a. be a tough bad-ass who rolls out a few good lines while the other characters grovel and cower in fear). Props toMatthew Perrytoo. Honestly, this is probably the best performance on film by aFriendscast member. It blows away 98% of anything thatJennifer Anistonhas done, and manages to not be the same character that Matthew Perry played on Friends (Chandler). That in itself is a feat that Jennifer Aniston has never been able to really do. If you haven’t seen The Whole Nine Yards, then you are in store for a great time and ridiculously good fun. If you have, it’s been almost a decade, so a re-watching is in order.
The One That Got Away
Sunshine Cleaning has been out on Netflix for a while now, but I hadn’t watched it, or really cared to–until recently. Partly because it was just staring at me over and over saying, “It’s got Emily Blunt and Amy Adams… they are legit! Watch me!” After watching it, it was worth it. It’s a bit on the slow side, and definitely has a more independent feel, but Blunt and Adams work well together as sisters who are both down on their luck. Blunt is a recovering addict, while Adams is the head cheerleader from high school who ended up being a maid, with her one bright spot in life being the affair she has with her high school boyfriend (who was the captain of the football team). It’s definitely a tale of life gone wrong, with redemption at the end. Think of Sunshine Cleaning as Little Miss Sunshine, without all the magic. It’s just solid.
How to Lose Your Lover
Rom-coms are always a nice break from reality. Most rom-coms choose to really lay on the cheese and predictabilty, in-turn focusing on the lighthearted humor and charm of the lead actor and actress. Other rom-coms are definitely romantic comedies, but have that tinge of depression. This cynical depression gives them an entire different feel than your mainstream rom-coms. Have I said rom-com enough? How to Lose Your Lover is a bit cynical, yes, but it also includes a few moments of brutal sincerity and humor. It’s a brisk 1 hour and 33 minutes, which is just enough time for you to realize that Tori Spelling is in the movie, and she’s pretty decent.
For the Movie Buff
Kicking and Screaming
Noah Baumbach has reached a level of success that most filmmakers hope to achieve–famous enough to make the movies you want to make, but not so famous you become a “star”. His most recent work, Greenberg, starred Ben Stiller, who is by most accounts an A-List Hollywood guy. So, fame has its perks. The roots of Baumbach can be seen in full force with Kicking and Screaming, a 1995 effort about the post-college experience. Recent graduates should identify with little effort to the confusion, lost sense of belonging, and existential ennui posed by the coming “real world”. Any philosophy major should watch Kicking and Screaming just to catch all the witty references. How often can you say that about a movie?
Then She Found Me
Helen Hunt has always been a personal favorite of mine. Maybe it was her undeniable chemistry with Bill Paxton in Twister that warmed my heart (probably not), but she has always been underrated in my book. So, with her first directorial work, Then She Found Me, I had high expectations. While most of those expectations weren’t exceeded, they were at least met. Telling the story of a women desperately wanting a child, reccently divorced, and on the verge of a breakdown, who then runs into her biological mother (Bette Midler). As expected, mistakes are made, lessons are learned, and a slice-of-life-movie is once again complete. A solid first effort for Hunt, and an entertaining watch because of the performance by Colin Firth.
Sweet Streams. See You Next Week!
All movies this week are available on Netflix unless marked as Hulu.
Past Weeks of Flicks to Steam
Article written by Lee C. Jaster on GotchaMovies.com. Reposted with permission.