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In seemingly less than a week's time, the coronavirus changed American life – at least for the time being.
In the hopes of encouraging social distancing – therefore slowing the spread of the virus and lessening the impact and pressure on our nation's hospitals and health care centers – just about everything has closed, from sports arenas to music halls to bars and restaurants, and movie theaters.
In short: We're all going to spending a lot of time at home. And sure, we could try to convince ourselves that we're going to spend that time getting around to those cleaning projects we've been putting off, learning a new skill or talking to our fellow quarantined family members, but the reality is we're going to streaming a ridiculous amount of movies over the next ... a long time. So, to help your social distancing go as entertainingly as possible, here's a list of 100 good movies – from awesome action flicks to cool choices for children to stellar sports stories and even a movie about Daniel Radcliffe literally farting his way across the ocean – you can currently find on Netflix.
So stay home, stay healthy and watch away, everyone; we're in this together. And if we do this right, I won't have to write about 100 MORE movies you can watch on Netflix while stuck at home.
"Casino Royale": Yeah, I'll say it: This is the best James Bond movie. It's got all of the class and cool of the originals with enough of the new to make the exhausted elements feel fresh and exciting again. The action is stellar (give me that parkour opening chase forever), it's funny without being goofy, Daniel Craig's take on 007 adds new depth to the old spy and his relationship with Eva Green goes beyond merely the best "Bond Girl" storyline. Plus, the villain is Hannibal Lector! Crying blood!
"Free Fire": What happens when you toss a bunch of guns and weapons into an empty warehouse with a bunch of ornery criminals in the middle of a deal gone wrong? You get this chaotic, crazy shootout of an action comedy, starring Brie Larson, Sharlto Copley, Cillian Murphy and Armie Hammer.
"GoldenEye": The new Bond movie may have been delayed until November, but at least Netflix has several of the old flicks on its service – the best of the Brosnan bunch being "GoldenEye," a solid and slick action movie with all of the Bond bravado while almost none of the shticky goofiness and gizmos.
"Haywire": While everyone's minds are on a different 2000s Steven Soderbergh movie, check out "Haywire" as well. You don't watch this actioner for the plot – and you definitely don't watch it for star Gina Carano's action skills. You watch it because she kicks and punches people in the face really hard – and you know what, sometimes, that's enough.
"Mad Max": Go see where Fury Road began with director George Miller's 1979 grimy post-apocalyptic action favorite about an Australian cop (Mel Gibson) at the start of a dystopia getting revenge on some lawless bikers.
"Raiders of the Lost Ark": You don't need me to tell you what "Raiders of the Lost Ark" is about – and you certainly don't need me to convince you to watch it. You just need me to remind you that it, along with its two sequels (What fourth movie? Don't believe they ever made one, nope!), is waiting for you on Netflix. Mission accomplished.
"Shadow": Did you miss this borderline black-and-white martial arts epic at the 2019 Milwaukee Film Festival? Good news: It's now available on Netflix, where you can bathe in the beautiful monochrome visuals, cheer on the outstanding action sequences – BLADED UMBRELLAS! – and make a flow chart trying to understand the plot. But did I mention UMBRELLAS WITH BLADES!?
"V for Vendetta": In a tyrannical future, a young woman (Natalie Portman) falls in with an infamous masked radical named V who is plotting to overthrow the country's fascist leaders with sharp cunning strategy and even sharper cutting knives.
"Airplane!": Still one of the greatest comedies ever made. Few movies throw as many jokes around as this '80s Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker spoof – and even few movies land as many of those jokes as "Airplane!" does. Watch at your own risk, because surely you will be quoting this movie for the rest of the week if you do. (And don't call me, Shirley.)
"Back to the Future": One of the great blockbusters in the history of Hollywood, Robert Zemeckis's '80s favorite sends Michael J. Fox back in time to make sure his parents fall in love at the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. The other two entries are also on Netflix – but you have to start with the iconic original.
"The Bling Ring": Kids these days, with their phones and their social media profiles and their robbing celebrities' homes in the hopes of feeling rich and famous no matter the cost. Sofia Coppola's starry comedy – based on a true story! – is a slick indictment of our starry-eyed obsession with wealth and celebrity.
"Dolemite Is My Name": You may not be able to see anything on the big screen right now, but you can at least watch this jubilant tribute to the movies – and this wild yet heartwarming tribute to an under-appreciated mad genius movie-making mind in Rudy Ray Moore (an awards-worthy Eddie Murphy), who brought the blaxploitation character Dolemite to overlooked audiences across the country.
"Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga": Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams star in this Netflix Original about a duo of goofy Swedes attempting to take the globe by storm with their charmingly kitschy pop music in this toe-tapping and charming comedy. And seriously, Hollywood, cast Rachel McAdams in every comedy from here on out.
"Hail, Caesar!": The Coen Brothers go goofy with this gleefully eclectic Hollywood romp about a studio fixer (Josh Brolin) trying to solve a bunch of problems – from a missing star (George Clooney) to a Western actor trying his hand at glamorous melodrama and keeping his celebs out of the tabloids. Seem easy? Would that it t'were so simple...
"Kung Fu Hustle": Throw a classic kung fu action movie into a blender with a Road Runner/Wile E. Coyote bit, and you might get something like this kooky, consistently unpredictable live-action cartoon about some cons who get in hot water when the gangsters they've been impersonating come after them. Axe fights and super-fast landlady chase scenes ensue ...
"Monty Python and the Holy Grail": You've almost certainly quoted this comedy classic in the last few days – but have you actually watched this medieval lark recently? Remedy that; you'll certainly have the time.
"Ocean's 11": Hollywood entertainment doesn't get much cooler and slicker than this dazzling star-studded heist remake about robbing Terry Benedict's three Vegas casinos. But really it's about watching George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and company have a lot of smart, suave fun – and it is contagious. (Available until Nov. 30)
"The Other Guys": Aim for the bushes and jump for this very funny buddy cop comedy starring Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, Samuel L. Jackson and The Rock. It'll happily remind of you of the days when writer-director Adam McKay made goofy comedies like this instead of condescending political Oscar bait like "Vice"!
"Pineapple Express": Seth Rogen and James Franco team up for this dark stoner comedy about two reluctant buddies – a process server and his dopey drug dealer – who have to hide out together after the former accidentally witnesses a high-profile murder. Bring snacks – preferably Fruit Roll-Ups.
"The Sapphires": Based on a true story, this Australian music-fueled dramedy follows four young Aboriginal women who pursue their dreams of musical fame by creating a singing quartet and gaining a spotlight with the help of their oddball manager, played by popular scene-stealer Chris O'Dowd.
"Scott Pilgrim vs. the World": Need a jolt of energy? Edgar Wright's electric rom-com will give you the cinematic power-up you need, a blissful blitz of music, action and laughs as Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) attempts to defeat his new girlfriend's seven evil execs – a quest that includes bass battles, Chris Evans, vegan police and much more.
"Swiss Army Man": You know, just another comedy about a man trapped on a desert island who befriends a talking corpse – played by Harry Potter himself Daniel Radcliffe – that farts him like a jetski back to society. Hollywood: NO CREATIVITY THESE DAYS! As crazy as that all sounds, and the movie IS crazy, "Swiss Army Man" is funny, one-of-a-kind and strangely moving.
"Walk Hard": The world of musical biopics gets deliciously and scathingly grilled in this modern cult comedy hit about a bumbling country star who rises the ranks of the music industry, becomes friends with The Beatles, gets addicted to drugs and makes a daring comeback. I don't look forward to this movie leaving Netflix at some point – but when it does, at least I'll have my "WRONG MOVIE DIED!" joke ready on standby.
"The Battered Bastards of Baseball": It may have been minor league baseball, but the Portland Mavericks of the '70s – owned and created by Kurt Russell's dad – were major league fun in this sports documentary about these oddball outlaws who were juuuuuust a bit outside the norm.
"Capital in the 21st Century": Get ready for the most exciting and informative economics and history class of your life. OK, an admittedly low bar to get over, but "Capital in the Twenty-First Century" – a documentary based on the popular book by economist Thomas Piketty – does it and then some, combining slick and clever direction with a fascinating explanation of economics in modern history.
"The Force": A selection at the 2017 Milwaukee Film Festival, "The Force" is a gripping behind-the-scenes look inside the Oakland Police Department as it tries to build trust in the community while also battling its own controversies. A severe yet sympathetic look at an unsolved conflict in our country.
"Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992": As you'd expect from a documentary going through a decade of tension and strife, "Let It Fall" is a dense and (at almost two and a half hours) extended watch. But it's essential and gripping viewing when it comes to understanding one of the country's largest and most notorious riots in recent memory.
"Pick of the Litter": The best way to make quarantining during a pandemic better? PUPPIES! And better yet, puppies that are as altruistic as they are adorable as this film festival favorite doc follows a batch of puppers as they go through remarkable seeing-eye dog training.
"Tread": The fascinating but frightening true story of an unassuming man in a small Rocky Mountain town who decides he's had enough of his neighbors and creates a bulletproof bulldozer to ran rampant through the city – no matter who or what he destroys in the process.
"20th Century Women": One of the best movies of the past decade, Mike Mills' coming-of-age drama follows a teenage boy being raised by a collection of women in the late '70s. Watch this movie and cry because it's great – and then cry because somehow Annette Bening wasn't nominated for Best Actress.
"A Serious Man": One of the Coen Brothers' most under-appreciated projects, "A Serious Man" is a fascinating and funny dark comedy about a professor whose seemingly normal existence and faith is rattled when his marriage, job and reputation begin to unravel.
"A Single Man": In a just world, Colin Firth would've won his Best Actor Oscar for this stellar drama (directed by fashion icon Tom Ford) about a gay man in the '60s shook by the recent death of his boyfriend.
"An Education": Carey Mulligan becomes a star in this Oscar-nominated coming-of-age drama about a teenager in 1960s London who starts dating an older man (the perennially underrated Peter Sarsgaard) and learns about culture, life, love and that you can't trust men.
"Atlantics": Part drama and part ghost story, this alluring should've-been-Oscar-nominated film from Senegal follows a young woman sent adrift when her lover leaves the country to find better work across the ocean. Meanwhile, back at home, young women keep getting possessed by angry spirits. So that's not good! (But the movie is.)
"Black Sea": Think having to practice social distancing is stressful and claustrophobic? Think about the poor stars of this tense and taut aquatic thriller about a bunch of thieves stuck in a submarine trying to hunt for gold at the bottom of the sea.
"Boyz n the Hood": Back in 1991, the late great John Singleton set the record for the youngest Best Director nominee at 24 years old with this star-studded inner-city drama about several young black men living in Crenshaw and thinking about their futures while trying to survive day to day amongst the area's gangs.
"Da 5 Bloods": Spike Lee takes on Vietnam in his pained and passionate follow-up to the Oscar-winning "BlacKkKlansman," following four veterans (headlined by an award-worthy Delroy Lindo) as they return to the country they fought across to recover their fallen comrade – and recover a trunk of gold bars that they vowed to return for back in the day.
"Django Unchained": Quentin Tarantino goes back to the historical revisionist well with this wildly entertaining revenge story about a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) who teams up with a bounty hunter (an Oscar-winning Christoph Waltz) to save his wife from a sadistic slave owner (a should've-been Oscar-winning Leonardo DiCaprio).
"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind": Part romance, part comedy, part tragedy, all one-of-a-kind quirky surreality, the Oscar-winning "Eternal Sunshine" stars Jim Carrey as a loner who undergoes an strange medical procedure to erase his ex-girlfriend (Kate Winslet) from his memory. But the real stars are Charlie Kaufman's silly yet sad, mesmerizingly melancholy screenplay and director Michel Gondry's lo-fi visual style.
"Fargo": Oh hey derr, watch this classic Coen Brothers darkly comedic crime story, ya? About a real schmuck of a car dealer guy derr setting up a kidnapping only for it to blow up right derr in his face, wouldn't ya know? And I tells you, it earns its reputation as a smart, jetblack comedy.
"The Florida Project": A lovely indie project from acclaimed director Sean Baker, "The Florida Project" hangs out at a bright pink motel outside of Disney World with its even brighter characters – from an exploration-happy little girl to her unpolished young mother to the strained man (an Oscar-nominated Willem Dafoe) who tries to contain the chaos at the building.
"Fruitvale Station": Before they teamed up on "Creed" and "Black Panther," director Ryan Coogler and Michael B. Jordan first made their names with this potent and powerful based-on-a-true-story indie drama following 22-year-old Oscar Grant's final day alive before he's shot and killed by Bay Area police during an altercation. A heart-filled and heartwrenching portrait of life and death that also happens to preview the start of an excellent filmmaking friendship.
"Good Time": Did you love "Uncut Gems"? Then you'll love this fellow gritty and delightfully stressful trip into the criminal underworld from the Safdie Brothers, starring Robert Pattinson (make a "Twilight" joke at your own risk!) as a crappy thief trying to get his brother out of prison after a job gone wrong.
"Her": I get it: A movie about a man falling in love with an app sounds REAL strange. But Spike Jonze's romantic drama is bittersweet, lovely, smart and painfully human for a movie about a guy loving an operating system.
"I Lost My Body": Animated movies don't come much stranger – but also much better – than this Oscar-nominated hand-drawn bittersweet and bizarre beauty about a sentient severed hand crawling its way back across the city to its rightful owner.
"The Irishman": Listen, you've finally got a lot of time on your hands. So now there's no excuse for not checking out Martin Scorsese's excellent gangster epic. It's a gripping gut punch of a movie, immaculately performed, but it's also not without its entertainment value. (Give me EVERY Al Pacino line-reading, please.) It's a powerful (seemingly) final statement from Scorsese.
"Kon-Tiki": Is there a better movie to watch when you can't leave your house than an adventure movie about men out on the incredible open sea? I argue no. This thrilling 2012 adventure about two explorers setting sail on a raft and the obvious dangers they meet along the way might be just what the doctor ordered, getting you out on the gorgeous ocean without leaving the couch.
"Lady Bird": Greta Gerwig's breakthrough directorial effort is one of the most effortlessly charming and wise coming-of-age stories you'll see, following a young snobbish high schooler (Saoirse Ronan) as she both bonds and battles with her weary hard-working mother (Laurie Metcalf). There's bound to be at least one moment you'll feel like was ripped out of your own high school or family's experience.
"Legend": What's better than one Tom Hardy? TWO Tom Hardys! That's the selling point of this gangster drama, a true-life caper about twin British mobsters Ronnie and Reggie Kray in the '60s.
"Marriage Story": One of the best movies of last year is at your fingertips thanks to Netflix with this biting drama about a husband and wife (Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson, never better) trying to survive a cross-country divorce.
"The Master": Another Paul Thomas Anderson masterwork, Joaquin Phoenix stars as a military vet lost at home after the war but finds a new purpose with an intense new religious sect (led by Philip Seymour Hoffman's Lancaster Dodd) that definitely isn't scientology.
"Moonlight": The 2016 Oscar winner is a beautiful, bittersweet and all-too-deserving Best Picture choice, following the life of a young Miami black man through three essential periods in his life.
"Nightcrawler": A Jake Gyllenhaal in desperate need of a sandwich stars in this darkly comedic, nocturnal news thriller as a creepy guy in desperate search of a job who finds his dream occupation: ambulance chasing to crime scenes and car accidents to film them for the evening news. And the higher he climbs up the ladder at the station, the lower his bar sinks for content.
"One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest": Skip the ridiculous "Ratched" prequel series and just stick with the original Oscar-winning classic about a wildman (Jack Nicholson) who's admitted into a mental institution and unites his fellow inmates against the facility's cruel and uncaring lead nurse.
"Pan's Labyrinth": Before he won Best Picture for "The Shape of Water," writer-director Guillermo del Toro's gorgeously gothic imagination earned him three Oscars with this fairy tale about a young girl who escapes the scary war-scarred world around her via a magical fantasy that may end up being just as dangerous.
"The Perks of Being a Wallflower": Growing up is hard; just ask the high school outsiders in this Stephen Chbosky's winning adaptation of his own bestselling coming-of-age novel of the same name.
"Platoon": Oliver Stone's searing Best Picture winner about the Vietnam war still packs a potent punch almost 35 years later, following a small group of soldiers that finds themselves in the middle of a intergroup coup between the volatile Sgt. Barnes (Tom Berenger) and the more benevolent Sgt. Elias (Willem Dafoe) that infects the rest of the soldiers' own mental health.
"Roma": Alfonso Cuaron's Oscar-winning character study is a gorgeous black-and-white slow burn, following a maid as her life changes along with the rich family she works for. It's mesmerizing work.
"The Social Network": A movie about Facebook sounds terrible. (Movies about computers, in general, are terrible.) But the combined forces of David Fincher's shadowy and ominous direction, Aaron Sorkin's whip-snap script, and pitch-perfect performances from the likes of Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Armie Hammer, Rooney Mara and even Justin Timberlake turned a bad idea into the best movie of the last decade.
"Spotlight": Watching a crew of journalists in bland khakis do their jobs and do the often-tedious shoe-leather necessary to break a story shouldn't be exciting and engaging – but this Best Picture-winning procedural drama, about the uncovering of the Catholic Church's cover-up of sexual assault cases by some of its priests, makes it a slow-boiling thrill. A low-key excellent film.
"The Squid and the Whale": If you enjoyed "Marriage Story" – OK, maybe "enjoyed" is a strange word to use – be sure to check out writer-director Noah Baumbach's breakout indie hit "The Squid and the Whale," which tells the story of a bitter divorce instead from the viewpoint of a teenager caught in the crossfire.
"Steve Jobs": Screenwriter extraordinaire Aaron Sorkin ("The Social Network") sets his pen on another tech superstar in this wildly watchable drama, showcasing three massive moments in the Apple savior's life. Sharply written, sharply directed and sharply performed, it deserved better than to be a flop in theaters – so check it out now.
"Taxi Driver": Another Martin Scorsese classic, this drama follows the infamous Travis Bickle (Robert De Niro, an iconic role) as he patrols a scuzzy '70s New York City in his cab and decides he will play savior for a young prostitute – played by Jodie Foster in a breakthrough performance – by any means necessary. It's like "Joker" – but good.
"There Will Be Blood": Paul Thomas Anderson's American masterpiece follows Oscar winner Daniel Day Lewis as the iconic Daniel Plainview, a viciously opportunistic oil man waging a war against a local pastor trying to found a new church on the land. Grand and gorgeous.
"Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy": Quick: Name a British actor. Yep, they're probably in this tense, taut, impeccably crafted and impenetrably twisty spy thriller about a spy (Gary Oldman) trying to find a Soviet mole inside British intelligence.
"Uncut Gems": We live in stressful times – so not watch a movie that'll make you EVEN MORE STRESSED! This scintillatingly scuzzy New York gambling drama is a unstoppable 150-minute panic attack you can't turn away from as Adam Sandler's Howard Ratner ruins his life in pursuit of a crazy sports bet. Watch it, then take a nice soothing bath afterward. You'll have earned it.
"We Are Your Friends": This Zac Efron drama about a DJ trying to make it big in the electronic music world is ... about as dumb as it sounds. But it's got a sweet, electric, well-intended bro energy to it that just might just be the perfect brainless binge during heavy times.
"Wildlife": Paul Dano's debut drama is a low-key stunner about a family of three falling apart after the father (Jake Gyllenhaal) loses his job and decides to head into the woods to help fight forest fires while his wife (Carey Mulligan) tries to reassert herself back into her own life.
"Zodiac": If you love true crime stories, you'll love David Fincher's incredible serial killer drama "Zodiac" about the various police officers and newspapermen trying to track down one of the nation's most notorious murderers. It's one of the young century's best movies – even though it will absolutely ruin the song "Hurdy Gurdy Man" for you forever. (Available until Nov. 30)
"The Croods": I get it: An animated movie about uncouth cavemen, starring Nicolas Cage, isn't the most appealing prospect. But this Dreamworks cartoon adventure is quite funny and, at the end, maybe even tear-inducing.
"Hugo": Yes, the guy behind "Goodfellas" and "Casino" made a kids movie – and a very good one at that, a whimsical story about a young Parisian orphan living in a train station who gets embroiled in a mystery involving his dead father and his incredible machines.
"ParaNorman": A zombie invasion doesn't seem like kids movie material generally – but the incredibly inventive folks at Laika pulled it off with this mesmerizingly crafted and playfully creepy stop-motion movie about a young boy battled the ghosts and ghouls infesting his small town.
"Ralph Breaks the Internet": Everyone's favorite delightful video game villain (sorry, Wario) presses start on another adventure in this Disney sequel, this time trying to save the Sugar Rush arcade game by adventuring into dangerous territory: the internet. God help him ...
"Shaun the Sheep: Farmageddon": I watched this animated kids charmer when it came out near the beginning of the pandemic, and for 80 lovely, witty and wonderful minutes, I forgot the world was imploding. So I guess what I'm saying is that I highly recommend "Shaun the Sheep: Farmageddon," a movie about a nice but mischievous sheep trying to help a little lost alien get home. I want to hug this movie.
"Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse": I'm just saying that this is quite possibly the greatest superhero movie ever made. With gorgeous and inventive animation that constantly gives your eyes something new to see, a whip-smart script with equally exciting comic book-esque action and a surprisingly strong beating emotional heart, "Spider-Verse" is outstanding.
"The Willoughbys": The concept – four siblings concoct a scheme to kill their uncaring bougie parents – may not the most exciting one for parents, but this Netflix Original is both somehow charming and macabre, gorgeously animated with jokes delivered at blazing speed and a sour-yet-sweet story about sticking together as an unconventional family.
"Cape Fear": Martin Scorsese: He's not just about gangsters! For instance, he makes the occasional dabble into horror – like this scuzzy, creepy and expertly crafted horror thriller about a family (led by Nick Nolte) stalked by the convict (Robert De Niro) the lawyer family wronged in court.
"The Evil Dead": A movie about the dangers of social distancing. (But not really.) Sam Raimi's gory cult classic follows a group of friends heading out to a cabin getaway only to accidentally awake the violently evil dead after reading a book they shouldn't have read. Whoops.
"The Gift": A couple's move to a new home gets an unwelcome housewarming gift: a visit from an old former school friend of the husband who seems to have some old gripes to bring into their new house. A creepy thriller of manners – with an A-grade casting pick in Jason Bateman as the husband.
"The Guest": Get ready to fall in love with Dan Stevens ... and then be equally ready to be terrified of Dan Stevens, who plays a mysterious guest who begins menacing a small-town family in this thrillingly unpredictable and impressively unique '80s pastiche.
"The Invitation": A group of friends gather for a wine night ... annnnd that's all I'm telling you. Truly the less you know, the better with this outstandingly intense slow-burn smart thriller.
"It Comes At Night": Why not liven a real-life pandemic situation with this moody horror thriller about a family living during a deserted apocalypse, whose solitude is broken by the arrival of a new family looking for shelter?! It's a tense thriller much more about paranoia and dread than blood and guts.
"Poltergeist": Did Tobe Hooper direct this '80s horror classic? Or was it actually Steven Spielberg in secret? The world may never know – but whoever did delivered one terrific horror movie, a Halloween hit both wonder-inducing and wicked about a family menaced by ghouls in their new house.
"Session 9": Pro tip: If anyone ever offers you a job at a creepy abandoned mental hospital with a controversial and eerie past, maybe just stick with driving Uber to make some extra cash. Unfortunately for the cleaning crew in "Session 9," they ignored my advice – but fortunately for you, it results in a very creepy, spine-chilling, low-budget psychological freakout now available to stream.
"Unfriended": I know you've had enough of looking at Zoom screens and virtual meet-ups, but make an exception for this viciously mean, darkly funny and cleverly executed horror flick about a group of teens menaced by an odd visitor to their group chat – all told via computer screens.
"About Time": General Hux plays a young British man who falls in love with Rachel McAdams but messes it up. Luckily, the men in his family just happen to have the ability to travel in time in this charming tear-jerking romance from the creator of "Love Actually."
"My Best Friend's Wedding": A very likable romantic comedy about some very unlikable people, as Julia Roberts stars as a woman who falls in love with her best friend's fiancee ... and, like any good friend, decides to do her best to steal him away. Bad, bad Julia Roberts – good movie, though!
"The Notebook": Yes, it's the most manipulative romance movie pretty much ever. And yes, Noah is kind of a possessive creep who threatens to kill himself (?!) to get a date. And yes, this did help open the door to a whole mess of bad Nicholas Sparks movie adaptations. But come on, "The Notebook" is still lovely and sweet, with the one thing a romance movie needs above all else: a pair of performers (Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams) worth swooning over.
"Pride and Prejudice": Sorry, Colin Firth fans, this isn't the seven-hour BBC version. But the 2005 rendition, lusciously directed by Joe Wright and luminously acted by a plethora of future stars and famous faces (Rosamund Pike! Carey Mulligan! Angela from "Westworld!"), is very much worth falling in love with as well.
"Silver Linings Playbook": Looking for a silver lining right now? How about "Silver Linings Playbook," the Oscar-winning crowd-pleaser about two struggling Philadelphians (Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence) who help each other get by with dancing ... and maybe fall in love in the process.
"To All the Boys I've Loved Before": The rom-com isn't dead yet thanks to Netflix – and thanks to this charming teenage romance about a high schooler whose secret letters to her crushes get sent to them. The sequel, while not as fun, is worthwhile too. Hopefully the final chapter, "To All the Boys: Always and Forever, Lara Jean," keeps things cute.
"West Side Story": Before Steven Spielberg's remake hits the screen this Christmas (allegedly; nothing is certain in 2020), revisit the Best Picture-winning original musical featuring all of your beloved time-honored songs, gorgeous visuals and swooningly tuneful romance. (Available until Nov. 30)
"Midnight Special": Hypnotic and subdued, mysterious and grounded, "Midnight Special" is indeed a special blend, a uniquely intense and exciting sci-fi road trip drama about a father (the always-great Michael Shannon) trying to save his supernatural son from parasitic military forces and a strangely obsessed cult.
"Okja": Need another Bong hit after "Parasite" knocked your socks off last year? Luckily, Netflix has your back with his 2017 adventure "Okja," another undefinable feature about a young girl trying to protect an adorable giant pig from a factory wanting to turn it into meat.
"Snowpiercer": Another Bong hit! This one might actually be my favorite from the "Parasite" director, as he follows a train containing the last surviving members of humanity after a global freeze. But things aren't peaceful amongst the remaining few, as the poor are stuck in the back in terrible conditions while the rich control their ecosystem comfortably at the front.
"Total Recall": This mind-bending '90s thrill ride is the best of both worlds: It's everything you want from a dumb Arnold Schwarzenegger action movie, and it's everything you want from a brainy, twisty, clever science fiction story. No matter what you like in a movie, "Total Recall" (not the remake – good god, not the remake) has you covered.
"The Wandering Earth": As far as concepts go, this Chinese blockbuster (truly, it made more money overseas than "Toy Story 4" and "The Rise of Skywalker" in 2019) has one of the more delightfully strange ones: The sun is dying so the globe plugs rocket boosters across the planet and slowly shifts the Earth to a new solar system. With a plan that normal, who could expect that things might go wrong!?
"The Longest Yard": Football's back, but in case it's a Packers bye week – or you're a Bears fan and want something a little less tragic to watch – check out this sports film favorite starring the late great Burt Reynolds as a former pro quarterback stuck having to turn his fellow prison inmates into a football team against their awful warden and his guards. Spoiler alert: They're not very good – but they're still better than the Lions!
"Miracle": Again, there may not be any new hockey on television these days, but at least you can watch the best rerun in sports history: the United States Olympic hockey team rising up to beat the heavily favored Russians in 1980.
"Moneyball": Baseball may be over, but you can still watch one of the low-key best baseball movies ever made – one that's THAT good despite barely ever taking the field, instead following Brad Pitt's Billy Beane behind-the-scenes at the Oakland A's as his statistical revolution changes the game forever. It's a compelling underdog story with a snappy script (from screenwriting champs Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin), but what really makes "Moneyball" special is how well it captures the highs and lows, small victories and devastating heartbreaks, defeat and hope. (Available until Nov. 30)
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.