Movies on which to catch up as cinematic world due to reopen

BY BEN O’GORMAN

Coming towards the end of cinema lockdown (although there are not many new movies on the horizon ) this is the last of my streaming service recommendations.

With the cinemas permitted to reopen on July 20, here are the last few films I will recommend as lockdown restrictions continue to ease.

Contagion

This was the first movie I recommended when I started the streaming articles. I went back to re-watch to see how it held up after living through a pandemic for a few months. It is pretty on point. Things did not quite descend to the madness in that film but not far off, and hey, not out of the woods yet are we? Still lots of time on the clock for Covid to throw a few curveballs. The scene where Matt Damon is told his wife died is heartbreaking. This is a peak everyman Damon, he has an air of Robert Redford about him.

Marriage Story

I read an article last week that a law firm in London is seeing a 40 per cent rise in divorce inquiries. If you are one of these people you should watch Marriage Story. It came out last year alongside a lot of other Oscar contenders and I really enjoyed revisiting it this week. Absolutely stellar work from the two leads Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver.

The Great Escape

I hadn’t watched this in years until it recently went up on Netflix. No surprise that it is still incredible, if you somehow skipped this or thought it looked too old fashioned I cannot stress enough how great it is. It is as good as any blockbuster released today - particularly the final 30 minutes.

Children of Men

I think you could make a pretty good argument that this is the best film of this century. It is amazing how prescient it is considering it is 15 years old. An unbelievable cast with career best turns from Micheal Caine and Clive Owen. Also quite a good companion piece for the game The Last Of Us II that was released recently for PS4 - which is also well worth your time.

Leave No Trace

I still can’t believe how few people saw this movie when it came out two years ago. Tom is an ex military man who is suffering from PTSD. He decides to move off grid but brings his young daughter with him. They live and survive in the woods. This is director Debra Granik’s feature follow up to the incredible Winters Bone from 2010. In that film she discovered Jennifer Lawerence and in Leave No Trace she has uncovered another incredible young actress in Tomasin Mckenzie. It is an interesting film about isolation, parenthood and turning back on government. Available on Netflix.

Lost In Translation

Before going to Japan last year I gave this a rewatch. It is about a young girl who builds a friendship with an older actor while they are both holed up in a hotel in Tokyo alone. Some of the humour now seems a little out of date, the Japanese characters are basically there to be the butts of jokes. They speak English funny and that is really all the movie has to say about the locals. However, the good stuff, is still really good. A fantastic soundtrack mainly from Irishman Kevin Shields of My Bloody Valentine, really great chemistry between the two leads and some really beautiful footage of Japan. It is not a flawless movie but there is a lot here worth your time. Available on Netflix.

Sense And Sensibility

I will admit I had a bit of a bias against this movie, when the film came out to rent on video in 1996. I wanted to rent Goldeneye but my dad and sister chose this. I didn’t watch it because it looked boring (and in fairness a 12-year-old me would have found it boring ). I kept that opinion (without having ever watched it ) until a few years ago when Alan Rickman died. Emma Thompson (who won an Oscar for the screen play, and still the only person to have won an Oscar for screenplay and acting ) wrote a beautiful short obit for Rickman, I decided to watch some of their many movies together and this was by far the best. Clever film with a sharp and genuinely funny script. Available on Netflix.

Brexit: The Uncivil War

This was a made for TV movie that came out a few months ago where Benedict Cumberbtach plays the man of the hour Dominic Cummings. Written for the screen by James Graham who just did a rather excellent mini series on ITV about the coughing major from Who Wants To Be A Millionaire. I’m excited for the sequel of the last year or so. My suggestion for the title “Herd impunity”. Available on Netflix.

 

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