Missed Movies
by Joel Caris

Maysml.jpg There are too many damn movies coming out each year. Worse yet, most of the good ones are the ones you don't see. Still worse yet, because people don't see them, they assume they don't exist. But that's not the case. There are plenty of great movies that come out each year, they just don't always get wide releases or a lot of publicity. And I'm not just talking about foreign flicks and wacky art house films filled with odd people who don't quite know how to interact with the world (though I love those movies). I'm talking about all kinds of different genres--dramas, thrillers, comedies, crazy horror movies, and so on.

To help you out, then, I'm going to talk about three solid movies from the last few years that never were huge and you might have missed. Or you might have seen them. If you did, keep your mouth shut. (Actually, don't. Offer your opinion in the comments instead.)


Winged Migration
Okay, it's a documentary about birds. If you haven't seen it and haven't heard about it, you may be tempted to click off this page right now. But don't, because birds are pretty damn cool. And this documentary, despite the very little narration, is pretty damn compelling. The visuals are incredible and almost all real. The filmmakers managed to fly with birds, keeping steady, close shots on migrating flocks of birds. It's fascinating to view and makes your head hurt figuring out how they pulled it off. Meanwhile, they delve into all kinds of different birds, their habits, their migratory patterns, what drives them, and on and on. Depending on your point of view, it may sound boring, but it's incredibly interesting and will likely hold your attention throughout.

No, really, it will.

Birds are cool. Just deal with it.


May
This is a fucked up movie. Seriously fucked up. Majorly. And great. It's a horror movie from about five years ago, about a girl who has trouble connecting with people. Due to this trouble, she does some incredibly fucked up things in her increasingly desperate efforts to connect with other human beings.

This set up makes for one of those great horror movies that deal with real psychological issues, but in a bizarre and disturbing manner that leaves you wondering what the hell you just saw. Lucky McKee, who wrote and directed, hits all the right notes with this one, creating emotionally compelling characters who avoid devolving into mawkish clich├ęs yet never failing to remember that he's making a horror movie and never failing to deliver the obligatory creepy fucking scenes.

Oh, and the ending is fantastic. That's always nice and often rare for a horror movie.


Pieces of April
POAsm.JPG This is a nice, short, simple film dealing basically with a relationship and crazy family issues. It stars Katie Holmes, back when if you knew her, it was because of Dawson's Creek, not because Tom Cruise was slowly destroying her soul. She turns in a strong, subtle, convincing acting job in this movie and I really feel it's a model for the kind of acting she should be doing. Small character pieces seem to suit her well.

The basic plot is that her shitty family is coming to have Thanksgiving with her and her boyfriend in her shitty apartment. She's a bit of an outcast, they're all uptight and ridiculous, and it's clear they have issues with her life. Wacky hijinks ensue with the family as they make their way from their dysfunctional suburban home to April's run down city apartment. It's kind of along the lines of the family scenes in Little Miss Sunshine, though maybe not as entertaining. Frankly, it's been awhile since I watched the movie and I can't remember it well enough to directly judge it against Little Miss Sunshine.

It's good, it's amusing, it's a little depressing, and it's only about an hour and fifteen minutes. It's worth your time. Really.

And that's it. What are some of your little-known movie gems from the last few years?


Joel has a much longer list of movies he wishes he'd missed.


Lo-Fi Archives

Comments

Hi! Nice post. Really interesting movie and your right I don't even know that those movie that you review exist.

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May was a great flick. Really like that one.

The first really good flick that comes to mind is Man Bites Dog, a really fucked up French flick about a serial killer and a crew of documentary filmmakers that follows him around and eventually gets caught up with what he does. Really amazing flick.

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That sounds like a really interesting movie, Uber. I'll have to check it out.

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Winged Migration is wonderful (and I say this as someone who fears the evil creatures we call birds). Whenever I need a "time out" I put that on. Makes me feel serene. Hey, it beats heroin.

A movie everyone but me missed: . Very whimsical and weird. And it's got the original Pink Power Ranger doing things a Power Ranger shouldn't do. With the added bonus of Gary Oldman.

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Interstate 60

Never Been Thawed

Desert Blue

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Thanks Joel and Uber. I'm gonna check May out after those two endorsements.

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I screwed up my HTML, it was supposed to say Interstate 60. Did you know that, Mike?

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You should let me know what you think of it, Phil.

I'll have to check out this Interstate 60 since I've got two people recommending it.

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