A suspense movie with comic moments, this is also 117 minutes of thinking how awesome Blake Lively looks in a suit. I felt the script pointed me in a clear direction early on; this turned out to not be the actual direction, so when things resolved themselves it took some time for me to let go of my framework and accept what the movie was telling me. Other than that, this was a crisp, succinct fabulous movie.*
Cost: $6.00 Where watched: McMenamins St. Johns Theater with Matt, who is an Anna Kendrik fan.
*This film is more evidence of my hypothesis: Paul Fieg is the best white male director for stories about women.
For me, it’s the most forgettable Ocean’s movie* but that doesn’t really matter because it’s another opportunity to hang around with the crew. Though lacking in both Julia Roberts and Catherine Zeta-Jones, Ellen Barkin does some great work. And there’s that funny bit with Linus’ nose.
Cost: free from library Where watched: at home, with Matt
*Unlike the other two movies, I remembered nothing about the plot.
In this movie, Sanaa Lathan is mesmerizing in all her various stages of hair, but never more so as she drunkenly shaves her head. Hair is the framework for a reinvention of a life not quite fully lived, and it’s great to see Lathan’s self discovery along the way. This is another romantic comedy that tilts more toward empowerment than happily ever after, a tilt I heartily endorse.
Cost: Netflix monthly charge ($7.99) Where watched: at home.
I enjoy a good movie that explores class, and if you throw in one that also examines “friendship” between the help and their employers, all the better. But alas, this movie didn’t give me many places latch on and really care; people were interesting (or abhorrent) but so what? It also had one of those endings that is supposed to be all art-y and deep, but really felt like they hadn’t really figured out how to end the movie.
Three things I loved about this movie: the way young women’s sexuality was treated with respect; the casting of actors who looked like normal teenagers; and how hilarious it was. While much of the humor was based on exaggerated situations that would not happen in real life and some of it wasn’t my cup of tea, I laughed a lot while watching this movie. All six actors on that poster were great.*
When I discovered Anna Faris a few years back, more than one person mentioned they liked her in this film, which was a film that was not in the holdings of the Multnomah County Library. Now that I have access to movies via my TV, I could see Ms. Faris’s performance. She, as usual, had great comic timing, although the Happy Madison production company tends to produce films that are not to my tastes; this was no exception to that rule.
Cost: $2.99 via Google Play (though free due to credit) Where watched: at home, movie four of four while recovering from a migraine.
Of note: the four movies I watched were all via different movie delivery methods: streaming via Hoopla, DVD from library, Netflix, rented via Google Play.
My second viewing, I still love how director Taika Waititi takes everything really good about the Thor movies and adds a layer of comedy that completely works. Cate Blanchett makes for a worthy villain and even though the humor is turned up to 11, the stakes are still high. This is the best Marvel movie to watch when you want to laugh.
Cost: Netflix monthly charge ($7.99) Where watched: at home, movie three of four recovering from a migraine
Another Lynn Shelton film to delight in, this is a story of steadily rising stakes, both between the two friends, Mark Duplass and Joshua Leonard, and also Duplass and his wife. One-on-one conversations are the main reason to watch this, with layers upon layers of nuance. It’s a story that is mostly uncomfortable, but in a pleasurable way.
Cost: free from library, streamed via Hoopla Where watched: at home, movie two of four while recovering from a migraine.