Thursday, June 20, 2013

10 of the Best Movies that you might have missed!

As I made my dinner tonight, I heard a small fragment of a musical theme, and guessed from the kitchen, "Stardust?" to my husband who was watching this movie in the living room beyond. (I was correct.) Then I got to thinking that probably not many people have seen this awesome flick, hence, today's topic: TEN of the Best Movies that you might have missed!

1. STARDUST. (2007) This movie is delightful. Spectacular musical accompaniment reminiscent of a Spielberg or Lucas film, and it was directed/co-written by Matthew Vaughn. (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch, X-Men First Class, and Kick-Ass. He's even married to Claudia Schiffer!) Besides the incredible cast: Danes, Pfeiffer, DeNiro, Ian McKellen, Henry Cavill (the new Superman!), Sienna Miller; they all deliver solid performances with witty/hilarious dialogue and engaging plot. It's not often that there is an unpredictable, enjoyable plot, with believable action and magic, and not to mention powerful female characters that delivers in a way that my husband always watches it every time it's on t.v. Rent it/Stream it. Tonight.

2. Coco Avant Chanel ("Coco before Chanel."- 2009) The ultimate French chic-flic about Coco Chanel. Starring the lovely miss Audrey Tautou as a believable Coco long before she became the famous clothing designer. It satisfies the "foreign romance" category as well as the "haute couture" category and is all together endearing and romantic.

3. The Fifth Element. (1997) Believe me, I hope you've already seen this one. Surprisingly, I have non-Sci-Fi geek students (and adult friends) who have never watched Star Trek: Next Generation, or even seen Star Wars: any of them. It's equal parts horrifying and unbelievable to me. However, if you're going to see ONE sci-fi/fantasy movie this year, make it The Fifth Element. It's a cult classic for a reason. Bruce Willis is on fire with his expressions and sarcasm, Milla Jovovitch is a formidable supernatural being that saves the Earth, and the dialogue/script is one of the best in memory. Finally: Gary Oldman is one of the best villains of all time. Also, you'll understand why my entire family has adopted the word "chee-kon" to mean chicken.

4. Overboard. (1987) Another film I have to attribute to my husband's choice. A grip-your-gut comedy with Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn, where she is a rich socialite who stiffs him out of pay for a subcontracting job and gets amnesia, and he takes advantage of her by pretending she's his wife and mother to wild, country kids. Eventually everything works out to the couple's advantage, but it's always fun to watch the privileged clean. A quirky and hilarious comedy.

5. The Holiday. (2006) Every time the ditzy Los Angeles based Cameron Diaz drives in the snow, backwards in England, screaming her lungs out passing cars, I remember how good this film is. It's become a Holiday-time staple in my house, but it's still too new to often be on t.v. The budding romance between Cameron Diaz and Jude Law is heartwarming and hilarious, and Kate Winslet's heartbreak conquering is so admirable. It's "just right" in all the ways that count.

6. Excess Baggage. (1997) I own this film because I got tired of wanting to watch it at least once per year. A comedy of errors where a young socialite fakes her own kidnapping only to be really kidnapped by a car thief by accident. He tries to remedy the situation only to get them into further and further mischief...a true 90's gem.

7. Empire Records. (1995) Speaking of 90's gems, this movie, (like 5th Element) makes my top ten list of movies of all time. Move aside, Breakfast Club and Sixteen Candles, this is the 90's staple: it's about a record store that is bleeding cash and about to close, and the charming characters that work there who try to save it. Cue the amazing soundtrack (which of course I own on actual vinyl), the great acting talents of young stars like Renee Zellweger, Ethan Embry and Liv Tyler, and the ensuing hilarity that is the store, EMPIRE RECORDS and you're in for a happy and  nostalgic two-hour trip back to the 90's.

8. How to Steal a Million. (1966) I'm often irritated that many Audrey Hepburn fans haven't seen this flick. It's clearly one of her best. It's a great way to meet Peter O'Toole, and incredible actor as well. Audrey's dad is an art-imitator, until a museum hosts one of his fakes. Audrey is determined to get the small statue back before the museum finds out and hires O'Toole to
help get it back. Another delightful comedy of errors- this one is perfect for the whole family to enjoy. Put it in your queue. NOW.

9. The Boondock Saints. (2000) The ultimate Boston mafia revenge movie where the lead characters, Irish brothers, target mobsters and killers for judgment. Completely satisfying in an overly violent revenge plot on other bad guys kind of way. Not for kids, or my mom.

10. Secondhand Lions. Saving the best for last! I show this film during my "character development" unit in seventh grade because I love the good values, ethics and fabulous storytelling in this movie. It's absolutely magical. I made everyone in my family watch it: parents, brother, grandparents: everyone loved it. It's beloved by all generations, proving it to be a classic. Once you watch this movie, and realize that these choices are legitimate, please go back and watch the rest on this list.