With 2020 being the year of downtime, here are 10 movies that you might have missed.
“The Way Way Back” (2013)
This Jim Rash and Nat Faxon directed film features outstanding performances from Toni Collette, Sam Rockwell, Steve Carell and Maya Rudolph, and has a tear-jerking peak that is wrapped up beautifully with a heartwarming ending. The perfect film deals with family, loving water slides, and finding yourself during the summertime. You won’t want to miss it.
Available on: YouTube, Amazon movies, iTunes.
“Uncut Gems” (2019)
The film, directed by the red-hot duo of Benny and Josh Safdie, and starring the talented Jewish actor, Adam Sandler, it’s described by some as “a 2 hour and 15 minute-long heart attack,” will be sure to leave you glued to the edge of your seat. With gorgeous cinematography, an excellent script and an ending nobody sees coming, after this tale of the ins-and-outs of the New York jewelry game you’ll have a new view of New York City along with nothing but satisfaction.
Available on: Netflix, YouTube, Amazon movies
“The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” (2004)
Beautifully directed by Wes Anderson, this movie is just one of his brilliant pieces of art. It follows the amazing Steve Zissou (played by the iconic Bill Murray) and his team while they attempt to hunt down a jaguar shark that killed his friend for the scientific purpose of revenge. When Steve’s son (Owen Wilson) joins his crew, the fun really begins. This film has an amazing final quarter and the best soundtrack I’ve ever heard. I fell in love with this movie as soon as I saw it and you will too.
Available on: Amazon Prime, Amazon movies, YouTube.
“Sorry to Bother You” (2018)
An absolutely stunning film from Boots Riley, the crazy movie has anything you could ask for. In one of the best performances I’ve seen, LaKeith Stanfield plays a telemarketer living in an alternative version of Oakland who rises to the top of his place of employment by being a Black man who uses his “white voice” while talking to costumers. Watch this quirky comedy for its amazing action shots, an appreciation for art, a brief appearance from Armie Hammer, a dope soundtrack and an ending I promise you will not see coming.
Available on: Hulu, Amazon movies, YouTube, iTunes
“Raising Arizona” (1987)
This Coen Brothers classic says a lot about the lengths one is willing to go to for family, along with answering the question of what would happen if a convict and a cop got married. With amazing performances from both Nick Cage and Holly Hunter, combined with hilarious writing, it’s a movie that merges the lines between fiction and reality. It is one you’ll definitely want to watch.
Available on: Hulu, Amazon Prime, Amazon movies, YouTube, iTunes
“Me and Earl and the Dying Girl” (2015)
There’s a reason this unique teen comedy has been my favorite movie since I watched it for the first time. Insightful and pretty directing from Alfonzo Gomez-Rejon, a perfectly adapted script by Jesse Andrews, crazy-amazing performances all across the board, the cutest of soundtracks and an ending that’ll make you cry, laugh and smile – there is something that’ll hit home for everyone who lays eyes on it. If you watch one movie from this list, I strongly suggest it be, “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl.”
Available on: YouTube, iTunes, Amazon movies.
“Beautiful Boy” (2018)
Boy wonder Timothée Chalamet puts on the most emotional performance of his career and is complemented perfectly by a rugged Steve Carell, a soundtrack full of hits and gorgeous cinematography in order to make a movie that is nothing but beautiful. This movie will tug at your heart strings and prove that parents will go to the end of the earth to protect their kid. While this movie isn’t for those who get sad easily, when watched properly, this movie is nothing short of a masterpiece.
Available on: Amazon movies.
Film legends Spike Jonze and Charlie Kaufman team up for this obscure comedy in which Nick Cage plays both of the two main characters. This movie is riddled with physical metaphors and hidden meanings, as the movie itself is about Charlie Kaufman attempting to adapt a popular book onto a script for the big screen. Charlie is very awkward and has almost no confidence in himself whatsoever, even though he is an accomplished screenwriter. Not only does Cage do a great job playing Charlie, but he also does an amazing job playing Donald, Charlie’s brother and everything that he is not. Whether you are a writer or not, you will be in awe of this amazing script. With an ending that’s nothing short of gorgeous with a beacon of hope, definitely do not skip this movie.
Available on: Amazon movies, YouTube, iTunes, Pluto TV.
“Little Miss Sunshine” (2006)
The second movie on this list featuring both the great Steve Carell and Toni Collette, they are accompanied by amazing performances across the board with special shout-outs going to Greg Kinnear, Paul Dano and Alan Arkin. Both Johnathan Dayton and Valerie Faris direct this hope-inspiring family comedy that perfectly depicts what it’s like to be on a dysfunctional family vacation. While it shows the struggles of each individual and how sometimes family isn’t the best solution, it also shows that throughout it all, family always prevails.
Available on: Hulu, Starz, YouTube, Sling TV.
“The Prestige” (2006)
Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson and Michael Caine light up the screen in this Christopher Nolan mind bender. The story is bound to keep you interested, as you follow two late 1800s English magicians competing for popularity and attempting to sabotage one another. It is my opinion and many others that this film contains the craziest plot twist in cinema history, so make sure to watch and listen very carefully.
Available on: Hulu, iTunes, YouTube, Amazon movies.
Zachary Goldstein is a Shaker Heights resident and a senior at University School in Hunting Valley. An avid writer, he plans to study journalism in college.