Blue Is the Warmest Color (IFC Films)

(Photo by Netflix. Thumbnail image: Focus/courtesy Everett Collection)

The 30 Best LGBTQ Movies on Netflix Right Now

In celebration of Pride month, we compiled a list of the best Fresh lesbian, gay, trans, and queer films you can watch on Netflix right now. You’ll find Netflix originals (like recent documentaries Circle of Books and A Secret Love) as well as award-winning theatrical releases.

The titles below are sorted from the best LGBTQ films on Netflix and ranked by adjusted Tomatometer score (which takes into account the number of reviewers weighing in, and the number of reviews per film for movies released in a given year). To be included, films had to have a Fresh Tomatometer score (60% or above).

#30
Adjusted Score: 85731%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: This film celebrates Armistead Maupin, one of the world's most beloved storytellers, following his evolution from a conservative son of... [More]
Starring: Armistead Maupin
Directed By: Jennifer M. Kroot

#29

Transformer (2017)
100%

#29
Adjusted Score: 70671%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A former Marine and record-breaking powerlifter faces his most challenging test of strength yet -- transitioning from male to female.... [More]
Starring:
Directed By: Michael Del Monte

#28

I Am Michael (2015)
62%

#28
Adjusted Score: 63905%
Critics Consensus: I Am Michael takes a determinedly balanced approach to its complex subject, and although the results don't always add up, they're anchored by strong work from James Franco.
Synopsis: Based on the fascinating, true-life story of Michael Glatze (James Franco), a gay activist who becomes an anti-gay Christian pastor.... [More]
Directed By: Justin Kelly

#27

The Danish Girl (2015)
67%

#27
Adjusted Score: 75983%
Critics Consensus: The Danish Girl serves as another showcase for Eddie Redmayne's talent -- and poignantly explores thought-provoking themes with a beautifully filmed biopic drama.
Synopsis: With support from his loving wife Gerda (Alicia Vikander), artist Einar Wegener (Eddie Redmayne) prepares to undergo one of the... [More]
Directed By: Tom Hooper

#26

The Perfection (2018)
71%

#26
Adjusted Score: 75501%
Critics Consensus: Led by a pair of compelling performances, The Perfection is a smart, gripping thriller that barbs its wild twists with cutting wit.
Synopsis: A troubled musical prodigy and a new star pupil embark down a sinister path.... [More]
Directed By: Richard Shepard

#25
#25
Adjusted Score: 79552%
Critics Consensus: A time capsule assembled with honesty and sensitivity, Edge of Seventeen overcomes youthful fumbles to capture a time of life -- and an era.
Synopsis: Set in 1984 in Sandusky, Ohio, it follows the coming-out of a naive 17-year-old at exactly the moment when gender-bending... [More]
Directed By: David Moreton

#24

Alex Strangelove (2018)
81%

#24
Adjusted Score: 80670%
Critics Consensus: Alex Strangelove offers a refreshingly insightful -- and fittingly adult -- take on teen sexuality enlivened by smart humor and a fearlessly progressive approach.
Synopsis: A high school senior plans on losing his virginity to his girlfriend. Things get complicated when he meets a handsome... [More]
Directed By: Craig Johnson

#23

Holding the Man (2015)
81%

#23
Adjusted Score: 81796%
Critics Consensus: Heart-wrenching performances center Holding the Man, an achingly beautiful portrayal of love and death that may be too real for some.
Synopsis: In the 1970s, two teen boys in Australia fight all obstacles thrown their way and refuse to renounce the love... [More]
Directed By: Neil Armfield

#22

Let It Snow (2019)
81%

#22
Adjusted Score: 81773%
Critics Consensus: Comfortably cliché, Let It Snow wears its influences on its sleeve, but works anyway thanks an excellent ensemble and just the right amount of holiday cheer.
Synopsis: A snowstorm brings a group of young people together.... [More]
Directed By: Luke Snellin

#21

Lovesong (2016)
83%

#21
Adjusted Score: 84355%
Critics Consensus: Wise, well-acted, and emotionally resonant, Lovesong explores emotionally resonant themes through the ups and downs of the bond between two women.
Synopsis: Neglected by her husband, Sarah (Riley Keough) embarks on an impromptu road trip with her young daughter and her best... [More]
Directed By: So-yong Kim

#20

Handsome Devil (2016)
83%

#20
Adjusted Score: 85769%
Critics Consensus: Handsome Devil offers a charming, well-acted variation on the coming-of-age story with a few fresh topical twists.
Synopsis: Two opposites, a loner and the top athlete at a rugby-obsessed boarding school become friends, and the authorities test their... [More]
Directed By: John Butler

#19
#19
Adjusted Score: 81469%
Critics Consensus: Smart, stylish, and well-acted, What Keeps You Alive proves it's still possible to spin an engrossing horror yarn without fundamentally altering established formula.
Synopsis: Jackie and Jules are a couple celebrating their first anniversary at a secluded cabin in the woods belonging to Jackie's... [More]
Directed By: Colin Minihan

#18
#18
Adjusted Score: 87826%
Critics Consensus: The Boys in the Band brings the classic stage play back to the screen with a well-acted adaptation containing surprising -- and poignant -- modern relevance.
Synopsis: A visitor turns an evening upside down when he interrupts a gathering of gay men in New York City in... [More]
Directed By: Joe Mantello

#17

Other People (2016)
85%

#17
Adjusted Score: 88868%
Critics Consensus: Other People resists easy melodrama, rewarding viewers with a smart, subtle look at family dynamics with a talented cast and a finely calibrated blend of funny and serious moments.
Synopsis: A struggling comedy writer, fresh from breaking up with his boyfriend, moves to Sacramento to help his sick mother. Living... [More]
Directed By: Chris Kelly

#16

Girl (2018)
83%

#16
Adjusted Score: 85136%
Critics Consensus: Girl uses one aspiring dancer's story as the framework for a poignant drama that approaches its difficult themes with fittingly alluring grace.
Synopsis: Lara, a 15-year-old girl who was born in a boy's body, is committed to becoming a professional ballerina.... [More]
Directed By: Lukas Dhont

#15

I Care a Lot (2020)
79%

#15
Adjusted Score: 89934%
Critics Consensus: A searing swipe at late-stage capitalism, I Care A Lot is an exhilarating pitch black comedy with a wicked performance from Rosamund Pike.
Synopsis: Poised with sharklike self-assurance, Marla Grayson (Academy Award nominee Rosamund Pike) is a professional, court-appointed guardian for dozens of elderly... [More]
Directed By: J Blakeson

#14

Lingua Franca (2019)
88%

#14
Adjusted Score: 90154%
Critics Consensus: Lingua Franca brings warmth and humanity to its social issue-driven plot with sensitive performances and writer-director Isabel Sandoval's gently empathetic touch.
Synopsis: An undocumented trans Filipino caregiver pursues a marriage to obtain a green card.... [More]
Directed By: Isabel Sandoval

#13

A Single Man (2009)
86%

#13
Adjusted Score: 92920%
Critics Consensus: Though the costumes are beautiful and the art direction impeccable, what stands out most from this debut by fashion designer Tom Ford is the leading performance by Colin Firth.
Synopsis: George (Colin Firth) is a college professor who recently lost his lover, Jim, in a car accident. Terribly grief-stricken, George... [More]
Directed By: Tom Ford

#12

Straight Up (2019)
93%

#12
Adjusted Score: 93078%
Critics Consensus: Well-acted and sharply written, Straight Up serves as an effervescent calling card for writer/director/star James Sweeney.
Synopsis: Intellectual soul mates bond.... [More]
Directed By: James Sweeney

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 97039%
Critics Consensus: A beautiful, epic Western, Brokeback Mountain's love story is imbued with heartbreaking universality thanks to moving performances by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.
Synopsis: In 1963, rodeo cowboy Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal) and ranch hand Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger) are hired by rancher... [More]
Directed By: Ang Lee

#10
Adjusted Score: 97358%
Critics Consensus: The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson uses its belated investigation into an activist's murder as the framework for a sobering look at the ongoing battle for equal rights.
Synopsis: Filmmakers re-examine the 1992 death of transgender legend Marsha P. Johnson, who was found floating in the Hudson River. Originally... [More]
Directed By: David France

#9

I Am Divine (2012)
96%

#9
Adjusted Score: 97536%
Critics Consensus: With warmth and affection, I Am Divine offers an engaging portrait of the complex personality behind a trailblazing cinematic figure.
Synopsis: The life and work of cultural icon, recording artist and actor Divine.... [More]
Directed By: Jeffrey Schwarz

#8

The Queen (1968)
96%

#8
Adjusted Score: 97168%
Critics Consensus: Celebrating its subjects without ever losing sight of their story, The Queen is a fascinating time capsule that has only gained resonance since its release.
Synopsis: In 1967, New York City is host to the Miss All-American Camp Beauty Pageant. This documentary from Frank Simon takes... [More]
Directed By: Frank Simon

#7

Pariah (2011)
95%

#7
Adjusted Score: 99745%
Critics Consensus: Pulsing with authenticity and led by a stirring lead performance from Adepero Oduye, Pariah is a powerful coming out/coming-of-age film that signals the arrival of a fresh new talent in writer/director Dee Rees.
Synopsis: Teenage Alike (Adepero Oduye) lives in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood with her parents (Charles Parnell, Kim Wayans) and younger sister... [More]
Directed By: Dee Rees

#6

Disclosure (2020)
98%

#6
Adjusted Score: 101006%
Critics Consensus: Disclosure engrossingly illuminates the history and effects of the way transgender lives are depicted onscreen -- and outlines how much progress still needs to be made.
Synopsis: A look at Hollywood's depiction of transgender people and the impact of this on American culture.... [More]
Directed By: Sam Feder

#5

Circus of Books (2019)
98%

#5
Adjusted Score: 101380%
Critics Consensus: Like the cheekily named store at this documentary's center, Circus of Books proves there are countless stories below the surface if we're only willing to look.
Synopsis: In 1976 a couple take over an adult book store, and the store becomes the biggest distributor of gay porn... [More]
Directed By: Rachel Mason

#4

The Half of It (2020)
97%

#4
Adjusted Score: 103572%
Critics Consensus: For viewers in search of an uncommonly smart, tender, and funny coming-of-age story, The Half of It has everything.
Synopsis: A shy, introverted student helps the school jock woo a girl whom, secretly, they both want.... [More]
Directed By: Alice Wu

#3

A Secret Love (2020)
100%

#3
Adjusted Score: 103006%
Critics Consensus: In telling one couple's story, A Secret Love pays understated yet powerful tribute to a lifetime of choices and sacrifices made in the name of enduring devotion.
Synopsis: A former baseball player keeps her lesbian relationship a secret from her family for seven decades.... [More]
Starring: Pat Henschel
Directed By: Chris Bolan

#2
Adjusted Score: 103674%
Critics Consensus: An absorbing and affectionate tribute to a unique individual, Mucho Mucho Amor should prove fascinating for Walter Mercado fans as well as first-timers.
Synopsis: Puerto Rican astrologer and psychic Walter Mercado discusses his life, career and post-fame seclusion.... [More]
Starring: Walter Mercado

#1

Milk (2008)
93%

#1
Adjusted Score: 102151%
Critics Consensus: Anchored by Sean Penn's powerhouse performance, Milk is a triumphant account of America's first openly gay man elected to public office.
Synopsis: In 1972, Harvey Milk (Sean Penn) and his then-lover Scott Smith leave New York for San Francisco, with Milk determined... [More]
Directed By: Gus Van Sant


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G.B.F.

(Photo by ©CBS Films/Courtesy Everett Collection)

The 20 Best LGBTQ+ Movies on Amazon Prime Right Now

In celebration of Pride month, we’ve compiled a list of the best Fresh LGBTQ+ movies you can find on Amazon Prime Video right now. You’ll find breakout hit comedies (Rocketman) alongside acclaimed documentaries like Tab Hunter Confidential and God Loves Uganda. 

The titles below are sorted from the best LGBTQ+ films on Amazon Prime Video – those included with a subscription, not those you have to buy or rent for an additional cost – and ranked by adjusted Tomatometer score (which takes into account the number of reviewers weighing in, and the number of reviews per film for movies released in a given year). To be included, films had to have a Fresh Tomatometer score (60% or above).

#20

Believer (2018)
64%

#20
Adjusted Score: 44526%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Imagine Dragons' front man Dan Reynolds explores how the Mormon church treats its LGBTQ members. With the rising suicide rate... [More]
Directed By: Don Argott

#19

Lez Bomb (2018)
89%

#19
Adjusted Score: 50886%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A closeted woman brings her girlfriend home for Thanksgiving, only to have her coming-out efforts thwarted by the unexpected arrival... [More]
Directed By: Jenna Laurenzo

#18
Adjusted Score: 78194%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Henry Gamble, a 17-year-old preacher's son, wrestles with sexuality, alcoholism and faith during his birthday party.... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Cone

#17
#17
Adjusted Score: 64246%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Producer and manager Allan Carr's parties define the 1970s.... [More]
Starring:
Directed By: Jeffrey Schwarz

#16

4 Moons (2014)
86%

#16
Adjusted Score: 53344%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Love and disgust builds for four men from different generations as they face their conflicts and fears.... [More]
Directed By: Sergio Tovar Velarde

#15
Adjusted Score: 92039%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: ... [More]
Directed By: Hitesh Kewalya

#14

C.O.G. (2013)
69%

#14
Adjusted Score: 69612%
Critics Consensus: C.O.G.'s plot is a bit meandering, but the characters are always compelling and the ending is richly rewarding.
Synopsis: Determined to suppress his homosexuality, a college dropout (Jonathan Groff) heads to Oregon, takes a job picking apples and, ultimately,... [More]
Directed By: Kyle Patrick Alvarez

#13

Halston (2019)
77%

#13
Adjusted Score: 80004%
Critics Consensus: It may not illuminate much of its subject's inner life, but Halston should still prove a comfortable fit for viewers in search of an entertaining fashion documentary.
Synopsis: At the height of his fame, fashion designer Roy Halston Frowick's empire included couture, ready-to-wear, fragrances, and even uniforms, accessories,... [More]
Directed By: Frédéric Tcheng

#12

Any Day Now (2012)
79%

#12
Adjusted Score: 80998%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In the late 1970s, a gay couple take in a mentally impaired teenager who had been abandoned, but the three... [More]
Directed By: Travis Fine

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 83596%
Critics Consensus: Elevated by a unique perspective and a magnetic lead performance, Margarita with a Straw puts some welcome spins on the coming-of-age genre.
Synopsis: A rebellious young woman with cerebral palsy leaves India to study in New York. On her journey of self-discovery, she... [More]

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 82510%
Critics Consensus: While it doesn't fully engage with the topics it investigates, The Gospel of Eureka offers an optimistic perspective on the modern American culture war.
Synopsis: Love, faith and civil rights collide in Eureka Springs, Ark. as evangelical Christians and drag queens step into the spotlight... [More]
Starring:

#9

Heartstone (2016)
84%

#9
Adjusted Score: 84963%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A young man discovers he has feelings for his best friend as he watches him pursue a young woman.... [More]

#8

Dior and I (2014)
84%

#8
Adjusted Score: 85313%
Critics Consensus: Dior and I will obviously appeal to fashion fans, but this beautifully tailored documentary may draw in even the least sartorially inclined.
Synopsis: Gifted artisans help Raf Simons pull together his first collection in eight weeks.... [More]
Directed By: Frédéric Tcheng

#7

Saving Face (2004)
86%

#7
Adjusted Score: 88933%
Critics Consensus: A charming tale of a love affair that overcomes cultural taboos.
Synopsis: Wil (Michelle Krusiec) is a lesbian, but she not dare tell her widowed mother, Hwei-lan (Joan Chen), or her very... [More]
Directed By: Alice Wu

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 88660%
Critics Consensus: Tab Hunter Confidential offers clear-eyed perspective on a less-examined chapter from Hollywood's past -- and an enjoyable look at the life of a retired former heartthrob.
Synopsis: In the 1950s, Tab Hunter was a Hollywood golden boy and matinee idol, but his life as a closeted homosexual... [More]
Starring: Tab Hunter
Directed By: Jeffrey Schwarz

#5

Bound (1996)
90%

#5
Adjusted Score: 91422%
Critics Consensus: Bound's more titillating elements attracted attention, but it's the stylish direction, solid performances, and entertaining neo-noir caper plot that make it worth a watch.
Synopsis: Sparks fly when Violet (Jennifer Tilly) sets eyes on Corky (Gina Gershon) in an elevator. Violet is the girlfriend of... [More]

#4

Princess Cyd (2017)
95%

#4
Adjusted Score: 97376%
Critics Consensus: Princess Cyd defies coming-of-age convention to offer a sweetly understated - yet deeply resonant - look at pivotal relationships.
Synopsis: A 16-year-old girl visits her aunt in Chicago for the summer. While there, she falls for another girl, and she... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Cone

#3

Pride (2014)
92%

#3
Adjusted Score: 98186%
Critics Consensus: Earnest without being didactic and uplifting without stooping to sentimentality, Pride is a joyous crowd-pleaser that genuinely works.
Synopsis: Realizing that they share common foes in Margaret Thatcher, the police and the conservative press, London-based gays and lesbians lend... [More]
Directed By: Matthew Warchus

#2

God Loves Uganda (2013)
100%

#2
Adjusted Score: 100362%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Filmmaker Roger Ross Williams explores the role of American religious extremists in Uganda, as a bill to make homosexuality punishable... [More]
Starring: Scott Lively
Directed By: Roger Ross Williams

#1

Rocketman (2019)
89%

#1
Adjusted Score: 113737%
Critics Consensus: It's going to be a long, long time before a rock biopic manages to capture the highs and lows of an artist's life like Rocketman.
Synopsis: Young Reginald Dwight changes his name to Elton John and collaborates with singer-songwriter Bernie Taupin to become one of the... [More]
Directed By: Dexter Fletcher

New this week to streaming video, we have new original series from Hulu and Netflix, an Academy Awards’ Best Picture winner, a handful of Criterion movies from 1966, and plenty of Certified Fresh choices. Read on for details:


Available for purchase:

 

Man From Reno (2014) 95%

Set in an especially ominous San Francisco, this thriller follows a mystery writer who stumbles into a strange missing persons case.

Available now on: iTunes, Vudu


Wyrmwood (2014) 82%

Zombies ravage the Australian Outback in this gory action flick, which pays homage Mad Max and other Oz-sploitation classics.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes


The Dead Lands (2014) 70%

This adventure film tells the tale of a Maori warrior who seeks to avenge his father’s murder and stave off an attack from a rival tribe.

Available now on: iTunes, Vudu


New on Hulu:

 

Difficult People: Season 1 (2015) 88%

Misanthropic standup comedians and BFFs hang out and make fun of their fellow New Yorkers in this Hulu original series. Series premiere on August 5th.

Available now on: Hulu


New on Netflix:

 

The Hurt Locker (2008) 97%

Kathryn Bigelow’s Certified Fresh, Best Picture-winning Iraq War drama tells the tale of  three explosives experts charged with disarming and disposing of the homemade bombs.

Available now on: Netflix


Three Kings (1999) 94%

David O. Russell Gulf War heist picture follows a trio of U.S. Army Reservists (George Clooney, Ice Cube, and Mark Wahlberg) who find a map that leads them to a stash of plundered Kuwaiti gold.

Available now on: Netflix


Lassie (2005) 93%

Peter O’Toole, Samantha Morton, and Peter Dinklage star in this Certified Fresh family adventure about a collie who undertakes an epic journey to reunite with her previous owners.

Available now on: Netflix


Casting By (2012) 94%

This documentary offers an inside look at the world of Hollywood casting directors.

Available now on: Netflix


Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp: First Day of Camp (2015) 93%

Elizabeth Banks, Michael Ian Black, Bradley Cooper, Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd, and many more team up for this prequel/reboot of the 2001 cult comedy about a summer camp in Maine.

Available now on: Netflix


The Way (2010) 83%

Emilio Estevez and Martin Sheen in this Certified Fresh dramedy about a man who treks across France in tribute to his late son.

Available now on: Netflix


Von Ryan's Express (1965) 90%

Frank Sinatra and Trevor Howard team up to liberate a group of British soldiers from a German POW camp in this action-packed World War II thriller.

Available now on: Netflix


The Skeleton Twins (2014) 86%

Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader star in this Certified Fresh dramedy about estranged twins who reunite as both are in the midst of personal problems.

Available now on: Netflix


Dear Frankie (2004) 81%

Gerard Butler stars as an anonymous seaman who agrees to help a single mother (Emily Mortimer) preserve the long-running lie that her son’s father is a sailor on a ship that just happens to be docking in town.

Available now on: Netflix


Marvin's Room (1996) 84%

Meryl Streep, Diane Keaton, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Robert De Niro star in this Certified Fresh drama about estranged sisters who try to mend fences whell illness strikes their loved ones.

Available now on: Netflix


Katy Perry: Part of Me (2012) 76%

The film follows Perry on her “California Dreams” world tour, capturing her eye-popping stage show as well as archival footage of her younger days and glimpses of backstage drama.

Available now on: Netflix


Top Secret! (1984) 75%

How silly can you get? Val Kilmer is Nick Rivers, a vapid American rock star on a goodwill tour of the Soviet bloc in Zucker-Abraham-Zucker’s classic spoof of spy movies and Elvis musicals.

Available now on: Netflix


Quills (2000) 75%

Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet, Michael Caine, and Joaquin Phoenix star in this biopic about the Marquis de Sade.

Available now on: Netflix


Fletch (1985) 77%

This comic murder mystery still stands as one of the best big-screen vehicles for Chevy Chase’s brand of smug silliness.

Available now on: Netflix


My Best Friend's Wedding (1997) 73%

In this romantic comedy, Dermot Mulroney is caught in the middle of a romantic tug-of-war between his longtime restaurant critic pal (Julia Roberts) and his 20-year-old fiancee (Cameron Diaz).

Available now on: Netflix


Starship Troopers (1997) 66%

Paul Verhoeven directed this cult favorite, a slyly satirical sci-fi action flick about an alien insect invasion.

Available now on: Netflix


New on Fandor:

 

Balthazar (1966) 100%

Robert Bresson’s masterpiece is a devastating look at man’s inhumaity to man, as witnessed by an oft-mistreated donkey.

Available now on: Fandor


Closely Watched Trains (1966) 100%

This coming-of-age drama about a lovelorn station guard classic of the Czech New Wave.

Available now on: Fandor


Violence at Noon (1966) 100%

Nagisa Oshima tells the story of a murderer and rapist — and the people affected by his crimes — in this disturbing, formally inventive classic.

Available now on: Fandor


The Battle of Algiers (1966) 99%

This riveting look at the French occupation of Algeria recreates the tumultuous late-1950s-early-1960s conflict so remarkably that you won’t believe it isn’t a contemporary newscast.

Available now on: Fandor


Masculine-Feminine (1966) 96%

Jean-Pierre Léaud and Chantal Goya star in Jean-Luc Godard’s French New Wave classic, whic is stuffed with ideas about politics, pop culture, and the battle of the sexes.

Available now on: Fandor


Persona (1966) 91%

Ingmar Bergman’s haunting, hypnotic Persona explores the fluidity of human existence. Liv Ullman plays Elizabeth, an actress who has suffered an onstage breakdown; she refuses to speak, and is cared for by Alma (Bibi Andersson).

Available now on: Fandor

As Birdman and Boyhood continue to rack up accolades en route to what is increasingly looking like an Oscar showdown in the making, it’s important to remember there were a ton of films this year that aren’t getting anywhere near the same kind of awards season buzz (and probably won’t), but still deserve a fair amount of love. With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of RT staff favorites that have either been largely forgotten or will pass through awards season with little to no fanfare. Read on for our off-the-radar recommendations of 2014!


Alan Partridge 87%

Alex Vo, Editor

Self-absorbed and misanthropic radio DJ Alan Partridge is Steve Coogan’s most popular creation in his home country and virtually unknown in the United States. This fact makes an Alan Partridge movie a tough sell here, especially since the character has been around for well over 20 years. For example, how much awareness of the character does one need coming into the movie? Fortunately, none! Alan Partridge more than stands on its own, with a barrage of hilarious jokes and scenarios rising out of the absurd “radio station gets held hostage” plot. Great tunes pepper the soundtrack, too, culminating with a memorable tribute to Sparks’ 1979 disco track, “#1 Song in Heaven.”

Watch Trailer

 


The Babadook 98%

Jeff Giles, Associate Editor

If you’ve heard anything about The Babadook, you’ve probably heard that it’s one of the scarier horror films of the year, and for good reason. Debuting writer-director Jennifer Kent envelops the viewer in a steadily encroaching atmosphere of cold, isolating dread, ratcheting up the tension so effectively that — as with many of the best entries in the genre — the movie’s titular villain hardly needs any screen time to establish his malevolent presence. But The Babadook isn’t just scary; in fact, it works just as effectively as a wrenchingly honest (and, in the end, almost sweet) examination of the ways in which unprocessed grief can draw us into darkness. Watch it for the icy chills, but don’t be surprised if The Babadook lingers long after you’ve stopped looking over your shoulder at night — and definitely be on the lookout for more from Kent.

Watch Trailer

 


Blue Ruin 96%

Grae Drake, Senior Editor

The idea of the revenge flick has been around for a loooong time. I imagine that the first one came out right after the Lumiere Brothers’ The Arrival of a Train, and featured a disgruntled passenger who had missed the train at the last stop. So now, in a cinematic landscape overflowing with recycled ideas, the revenge flick has to travel far from the beaten path to make a splash. Blue Ruin, directed and written by newcomer Jeremy Saulnier, is just such a film. Quiet and frantic, Blue Ruin slowly reveals the story of Dwight, who appears to be a lonely drifter with nothing but garbage dinners to keep him shuffling through life. Beneath the surface, however, lies a warrior who has suffered a great loss, and whose only desire in life is to restore balance through violence. One of the many problems Dwight has is that he is completely incompetent as an assassin, but where there’s a will, there’s a (messy) way. Dwight is the kind of samurai that I think I would be — full of enthusiasm and righteousness, but lacking in actual skill or know-how. Saulnier’s film never strays into slapstick territory, as the subject matter and Dwight’s life is too bleak to allow for lightheartedness. Somehow this movie manages to be poignant without being heavy-handed, and brutal without being judgmental.

Watch Trailer

 


A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night 96%

Tim Ryan, Senior Editor

Plenty of movies can be described as “more style than substance.” A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, on the other hand, is something else altogether: a movie whose style is so striking that it becomes the substance. Describing the plot of A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night makes it sound utterly generic (lovelorn vampire seeks companionship) and its unofficial tagline (“It’s the best Iranian feminist vampire Western ever made!”) makes it seem like some kind of campy stunt. But A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night emits a weird vibe that’s hard to shake, from its haunting black-and-white cinematography to its pulsing soundtrack. Every once in a while, I’ll see something that feels so unique and fresh that I want to tell everyone I know to see it now! This year, A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night was that movie.

Watch Trailer

 


Rob the Mob 81%

Kerr Lordygan, Review Aggregator

The true story of small-time crooks Tommy and Rosie Uva is a pretty incredible one, and it’s brought to vivid life in the little-seen Rob the Mob. Written by Jonathan Fernandez and directed by Raymond De Felitta (City Island, Booker’s Place: A Mississippi Story), the film is funny in its portrayal of a couple with enough chutzpah to steal from the mafia, but it’s touching, too; Tommy (Michael Pitt) and Rosie (Nina Arianda) love each other so much, they’ll do whatever is necessary to keep their passion alive. Struggling to pay the bills, they pull mini-heists to stay afloat, but after Tommy serves a stint in prison, he decides to try robbing private clubs owned by the Mafia, and Rosie is forced to go along for the ride. With a cast that includes solid pros like Ray Romano, Andy Garcia, and Griffin Dunne, the film is sure to entertain while pushing a few buttons. And tickling your funny bone. The actors are spot-on, commanding an unlikely empathy through their performances and making this modern day Bonnie and Clyde story worth more than just a glance.

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The Skeleton Twins 86%

Beki Lane, Editorial Coordinator

A surprisingly heartfelt drama starring well-known comedians Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig, The Skeleton Twins is a soft-spoken success. I was amazed to find such simple and clear acting by two people who are usually known for over-the-top comedic performances. This story of estranged twins is easy to relate to and you get the distinct impression that you are peeking in on everyday lives in progress. It is also a study of depression, and the struggle of those who fight to live in the face of it. The Skeleton Twins is Certified Fresh at 87% on the Tomatometer, and is worthy of diving into.

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Snowpiercer 94%

Catherine Pricci, Review Aggregator

Considering it came in at number two on our Summer Movie Scorecard — Certified Fresh at 95 percent, no less — it’s hard to believe so few people have heard of Snowpiercer, let alone seen it. Imagine a frozen, post-apocalyptic Earth whose only survivors are living on a train that perpetually circles the globe, and all of the train’s inhabitants are divided by class. Curtis (Chris Evans) and a ragtag bunch of his fellow
proletarians are fed up and plan a forward assault to the front of the train in an attempt to secure better living conditions. As they progress through each car, they discover increasingly shocking things. There are extremely dark tones in this film that will resonate with most and the morals they live by. Snowpiercer is a rock-solid action film, but it’s hard to miss its allegorical concerns, especially at a time when economic hardship is a reality for so many of us.

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Teenage 77%

Marya E. Gates, Social Media Specialist

Writer/Director Matt Wolf’s documentary adaptation of Jon Savage’s book, Teenage: The Prehistory of Youth Culture: 1875-1945, is more of a visual collage than a traditional documentary. Certified Fresh at 74 percent, Teenage uses archival footage and filmed recreations to tell the true story of four teenagers in the years building up to World War II. Narrators (including Ben Whishaw and Jena Malone) read excerpts from Savage’s book — much of which was taken from diaries and newspaper articles — to bring these four examples to life. A haunting musical score by Atlas Sound ties everything together, and the film ends with a montage of archival footage from post-1945 that celebrates the exuberance, despair, passion, and hope that comes during those tumultuous teenage years. While Teenage might not be for everyone, it’s definitely not like any other documentary you’re going to see this year.

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Under the Skin 84%

Sarah Ricard, TV Editor

At the same time that she was kicking supervillain ass as Black Widow in Marvel’s blockbuster Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Scarlett Johansson was also quietly burrowing her way into the gloomy outskirts of Glasgow, Scotland as a mysterious, beautiful, and dangerous stranger in Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin. Laura, whose name is easy to miss, drives a van through town seducing male strangers into coming home with her. While the men can’t believe their luck, they ought to remember that some things are too good to be true. Going home with a gorgeous woman, only to find that her apartment is actually an infinite quagmire of black goo, should be something of a real red flag. Under the Skin may frustrate many on account of its equally gooey pace and almost-too-subtle plot, but Johansson’s performance is at once beguiling and creepy, leaving you with two questions by this mesmerizing and shocking film’s end: What the heck did I just see? And when can I see it again?

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We Are the Best! 96%

Ryan Fujitani, Editor

Coming-of-age films are a dime a dozen these days, but the vast majority of them — even the comedies — seem intent on filtering adolescence through the adult lens of wistful, melancholy nostalgia. This is one of the reasons why Lukas Moodysson’s We Are the Best! feels so refreshing, even as its themes ring familiar. Set in the early 1980s but never cloyingly era-specific, the film follows a trio of outcast middle-school girls in Stockholm who come together to form a punk band, and it never devolves into the dire melodrama or awkward sexual awakenings of its genre kin. Instead, We Are the Best! embraces the joyful, devil-may-care rebellion of youth in all its ephemeral glory, best illustrated by the scene when the girls panhandle for change to pay for a new guitar, only to spend all their money on a candy and ice cream binge. There are some ups and downs in the movie, to be sure, but Moodysson’s affection for raucous Klara, sheepish Bobo, and demure Hedvig is so clearly on display that I’m inclined to declare you heartless if you don’t at least crack a smile when the girls finally break out into the titular chant.

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Whiplash 94%

Matt Atchity, Editor in Chief

It’s easy to understand why Whiplash got a little bit lost when it was released in October; it was a small film overshadowed by wider releases, and its leads (Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons) aren’t exactly box office draws on their own. But this film absolutely deserves all of the accolades its received so far, including the Grand Jury Award at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Miles Teller plays a talented drummer studying at a New York music conservatory who falls under the sway of a tyrannical bandleader, played by J.K. Simmons. The movie explores artistic achievement and obsession in a way that will have you on the edge of your seat, as Simmons and Teller repeatedly face off on the bandstand. The movie features an especially chilling performance from Simmons, balancing charm and abuse in equal measure. Sure, the movie takes a bit of license with jazz history, but the tense and thrilling climax will stick with you long after the film is over.

Watch Trailer

 

This week on home video, we’ve got a 1980s franchise reboot, a dystopian YA novel adaptation, Woody Allen’s latest film, and a couple of dramedies about dysfunctional families. Then we’ve got some notable TV releases — including the complete series of a popular anime — and some smaller films. Read on for details:



Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

21%

After some controversy surrounding whether or not the turtles in the Michael Bay-produced reboot would, in fact, be mutants, Bay himself came forward and told fans not to worry. As it turns out, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles had enough other problems for critics to point out. The story remains essentially the same: four turtles and a lab rat are transformed by science into walking, talking, butt-kicking humanoids, and an evil neo-samurai known as the Shredder threatens their fair city with a nefarious plot. The turtles still love pizza, and plucky reporter April O’Neil becomes an unexpected ally in their righteous battle. Directed by Jonathan Liebesman (Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, Battle: Los Angeles), the film featured plenty of callbacks to the beloved 1980s franchise (“Cowabunga!”) but little in the way of wit, compelling storytelling, or entertainment value in general, resulting in a skimpy 22 percent Tomatometer. The film comes in a regular Blu-ray/DVD package as well as a 3D release and features a handful of extras like a look at the character design and a look at the real-life evolution of turtles.



The Maze Runner

65%

The latest release in the increasingly popular genre of dystopian young adult novel adaptations is also one of the better-reviewed of the bunch. Starring a cast of relatively unknown young actors, the film centers on a young man named Thomas, who wakes up with no memory in a giant maze alongside others like him. He quickly discovers he and his fellow runners are trapped, forced to cobble together some semblance of a society as they attempt to figure out why they were brought to the labyrinth and how to escape it. Thanks to its unique premise, its embrace of bleak themes, and strong performances from its stars, The Maze Runner garnered a 63 percent Tomatometer score, though some critics wished for a more satisfactory third act. Special features include a long, multi-part behind-the-scenes doc, deleted scenes, gag reel, and more.



This Is Where I Leave You

44%

A dysfunctional family comedy wherein the dysfunctional family in question consists of veterans like Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, and Jane Fonda, as well as rising stars like Adam Driver and Corey Stoll, sounds like a pretty good idea on paper. And for what it’s worth, critics say This Is Where I Leave You has its moments, even if it ultimately underwhelms. Based on the book of the same name by Jonathan Tropper, the film centers around the Altman family, who come together for a week when their father passes away. They bicker, air dirty laundry, rehash past grievances, and attempt to make sense of their own lives, with mixed results. Critics acknowledged the amount of talent on display, which both helped to elevate the somewhat banal material and raised expectations for the end product — it unfortunately fell a bit short on the latter, resulting in a 42 percent Tomatometer score. The Blu-ray comes with a few extras on the making of the film and a deleted scene.



Magic in the Moonlight

51%

Uber-prolific director Woody Allen has had a rollercoaster career over the past several years, consisting of critical hits (Match Point, Midnight in Paris) and misses (Scoop, To Rome with Love). So it might have been wishful thinking to hope that his follow-up to last year’s widely acclaimed Blue Jasmine would also be a winner. Magic in the Moonlight follows a popular stage magician (Colin Firth) who travels to the French Riviera in order to debunk a young spiritualist (Emma Stone) claiming to be clairvoyant and who may or may not be taking advantage of a grieving widow. Critics were split at 51 percent on the Tomatometer; while some lauded the cinematography and period detail for creating a specific mood, others felt the laughs were few and the introspective themes treated with too light a touch.



The Skeleton Twins

86%

It’s not uncommon for comedic actors to diversify and pursue weightier roles as their careers progress — think Robin Williams, Bill Murray, and Ben Stiller, for example — and the end result is often unpredictable. With The Skeleton Twins, however, SNL alums Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig have landed on impressively solid ground. The pair star as estranged twins Milo and Maggie, who reunite under tragic circumstances, prompting Milo to move back home to New York and live with Maggie and her husband (Luke Wilson) for a while. Slowly, the siblings begin to repair their relationship and, with each other’s help, attempt to rebuild their own lives. Critics agreed that Hader and Wiig were in top form, and their strong performances and onscreen chemistry helped lend authenticity to the film’s more affecting moments, leading to a Certified Fresh 86 percent. Bonus features include a commentary track with director Craig Johnson, Wiig, and Hader, as well as outtakes, deleted scenes, and a 15-minute making-of doc.

Also available this week:

  • Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever (30 percent), starring the internet’s favorite cat in a holiday tale about a kitty who gets adopted by a young girl and helps avert a couple of crises.
  • At the Devil’s Door (24 percent), a horror thriller about a real estate agent who puts her sister in danger when she attempts to sell a house with a dark history.
  • One choice from the Criterion Collection: Sydney Pollack’s acclaimed Certified Fresh comedy Tootsie (88 percent), starring Dustin Hoffman as a notoriously difficult actor who resorts to dressing as a woman in order to find work.
  • Season two of Certified Fresh period drama The Americans (97 percent), starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys as a pair of Russian spies living undercover in 1980s America.
  • The Certified Fresh first season of Extant (83 percent), starring Halle Berry in a sci-fi drama about an astronaut who returns home with a secret after a year in space.
  • Season one of BBC America’s sci-fi series Intruders (39 percent), about a supernatural secret society whose members inhabit the bodies of others to achieve immortality.
  • And lastly, the complete series of the groundbreaking anime (it was the first to be broadcast on Adult Swim in the US, ushering in a wave of Japanese animation) Cowboy Bebop is available on DVD and Blu-ray.

This week on streaming video, we’ve got a couple of acclaimed indies and a feelgood culinary drama from Lasse Hallström. On Netflix, there is a treasure trove of newly available films, ranging from a couple of bona fide masterpieces to cult favorites to horror films and even a few James Bond flicks for good measure. Read on for the full list:


Frank
92%

Michael Fassbender, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Domhnall Gleeson star in this Certified Fresh dramedy about an artsy rock group whose eccentric leader wears a giant papier-mâché mask.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, Google Play


The Skeleton Twins
86%

Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader star in this Certified Fresh dramedy about estranged twins who reunite as both are in the midst of personal problems.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes


The Hundred-Foot Journey
68%

Escaping political turmoil in India, the Kadam family moves to a small town in France and starts a restaurant. However, they immediately run afoul of Madame Mallory (Helen Mirren), a local practitioner of French cuisine.

Available now on: Amazon, iTunes, Vudu, Google Play


Apocalypse Now and Apocalypse Now Redux
98%

Francis Ford Coppola reimagined Conrad’s Heart of Darkness for the Vietnam War, and the result is one of cinema’s most hallucinatory depictions of the horrors of war. Coppola’s longer director’s cut is also available this week.

Available now on Netflix: Apocalypse Now, Apocalypse Now Redux


The Hustler
96%

Pool hustlers Paul Newman and Jackie Gleason go mano a mano in this macho masterpiece from underrated director Robert Rossen.

Available now on: Netflix


Goldfinger
99%

Sean Connery dons the tux for the third time in one of the most iconic James Bond films, wherein 007 faces off against a nemesis with a penchant for gold.

Available now on: Netflix


The Truman Show
95%

Jim Carrey stars as the titular everyman who discovers his entire life is a lie, orchestrated as an ongoing reality show by a ratings-hungry producer (Ed Harris).

Available now on: Netflix


The Dark Crystal
79%

Jim Henson’s fantasy film, which follows a pair of “Gelflings” on a perilous journey to heal their planet, was decidedly darker than his previous work, but it amassed a cult following nonetheless.

Available now on: Netflix


Saturday Night Fever
82%

It’s got a killer soundtrack, a star-making performance from John Travolta…. and a narrative that’s far grittier and sadder that decades of parodies would suggest.

Available now on: Netflix


Almost Famous
89%

Cameron Crowe’s idealized self-portrait of his time as a young Rolling Stone correspondent is a funny, insightful look at the excitement and chaos surrounding a successful rock band.

Available now on: Netflix


American Beauty
87%

Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Thora Birch, Wes Bentley, Mena Suvari, Chris Cooper, and many more star in this Best Picture-winning portrait of suburban ennui and subsumed passions.

Available now on: Netflix


The Omen
86%

It seems like very other kid in the 1970s was possessed by the devil. The creepy and well-acted The Omen raised the stakes: its demonic tot was the honest-to-God spawn of Satan himself.

Available now on: Netflix


You Only Live Twice
73%

One of the last (and weakest) of the Connery Bonds, You Only Live Twice is still a reasonably good time thanks to its scenic locales and ninja battles (you read that right).

Available now on: Netflix


Ali
68%

Michael Mann’s biopic of boxer Muhammad Ali earned Will Smith an Oscar nomination, among a number of other accolades.

Available now on: Netflix


Labyrinth
74%

Another Jim Henson film that earned a huge following, Labyrinth stars a young Jennifer Connelly and a freakishly flambouyant David Bowie in a tale about a girl trying to save her brother from a devious goblin king.

Available now on: Netflix


Live and Let Die
65%

Roger Moore makes his debut as a lighter, more playful 007 in the eighth installment of the Bond franchise, which features a killer theme song by Paul McCartney and Wings.

Available now on: Netflix


Mission: Impossible
66%

Brian DePalma kicked off the M:I franchise with an explosive first installment full of double crosses and high tech gadgetry.

Available now on: Netflix


Batman Forever
38%

Switching out director Tim Burton for Joel Schumacher and star Michael Keaton for Val Kilmer didn’t do the Batman franchise any favors, but you have to respect the vision it took to cast Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face and Jim Carrey as the Riddler.

Available now on: Netflix


Friday the 13th, Parts 1 through 8
63%

Ever wanted to binge on the saga of Jason Voorhees and Camp Crystal Lake? Netflix has you covered, with the first eight chapters of the franchise available to stream now.

Available now on Netflix: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8

It’s that time of year again. The Gotham Independent Film Awards have announced their nominees for 2014, unofficially kicking the film industry into the beginning of the anual awards season. While we still have several prestige films yet to hit the big screen, acclaimed films from earlier in the year like Richard Linklater’s Boyhood and Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin are up for multiple Gotham Awards, alongside more recent releases like Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman and Justin Simien’s Dear White People. The awards ceremony is scheduled for December 1 in New York, but you can see the full list of nominees below:

Saturday Night Live celebrates the premiere of its 40th season this weekend, and to celebrate, we’ve compiled a list of critically-acclaimed films featuring SNL alums. The movies listed here aren’t necessarily the best or the best-reviewed movies from these stars; rather, we wanted to give a sense of the range and versatility of the not-ready-for-primetime players. Featuring those who rose to prominence during their time on the show (Eddie Murphy, Will Ferrell, Kristin Wiig) and a few you may have forgotten about (Robert Downey Jr., Julia Louis-Dreyfus), our list is a testament to SNL‘s continuing relevance as an incubator for some of the entertainment world’s brightest talents.


Adventureland
89%

Full of humor and nostalgia, and featuring wry supporting turns by Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader, Adventureland is a sweet, insightful coming-of-age comedy that will resonate with teens and adults alike.


Best in Show
93%

A fine example of writer-director-star Christopher Guest’s gift for improv comedy, Best in Show boasts an appealingly quirky premise and a brilliantly talented cast.


Bridesmaids
90%

A marriage of genuine characters, gross out gags, and pathos, Bridesmaids is a female-driven comedy features star-making performances from Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph.


City Slickers
91%

With a supremely talented cast (led by Billy Crystal) and just enough midlife drama to add weight to its wildly silly overtones, City Slickers uses universal themes to earn big laughs.


Elf
85%

A movie full of Yuletide cheer, Elf is a spirited, good-natured family comedy, and it benefits greatly from Will Ferrell’s funny and charming performance as one of Santa’s biggest helpers.


Enough Said
95%

Wryly charming, impeccably acted, and ultimately quite bittersweet, Enough Said is a grown-up movie in the best possible way, and it offers a chance to see Julia Louis-Dreyfus play an intriguingly complex character.


48 Hrs.
93%

Marking an auspicious feature film debut for Eddie Murphy, 48 Hrs. is a briskly paced action comedy that succeeds largely due to the outstanding chemistry between its two leads.


Ghostbusters
97%

An infectiously fun blend of special effects and comedy, Ghostbusters derives many of its biggest laughs from Bill Murray’s hilarious deadpan wit and Dan Aykroyd’s enthusiastic geekiness.


God Said, Ha!
86%

God Said, Ha! plumbs poignant depths, but Julia Sweeney’s sharp, graceful wit makes this one-woman monologue a wise, big-hearted burst of uplifting — and perhaps therapeutic — entertainment.


Good Hair
95%

Funny, informative, and occasionally sad, Chris Rock’s Good Hair is a provocative look at the complex relationship between African Americans and their hair.


Groundhog Day
97%

Smart, sweet, and inventive, Groundhog Day highlights Bill Murray’s dramatic gifts while still leaving plenty of room for laughs.


Innerspace
82%

A manic, overstuffed blend of sci-fi, comedy, and romance, Innerspace nonetheless charms, thanks to Martin Short’s fine performance and the insistent zaniness of the plot.


Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang
86%

Tongue-in-cheek satire blends well with entertaining action and a spot-on comic performance from Robert Downey Jr. in this dark, eccentric film noir homage.


Mean Girls
84%

Sharper and darker than the average teen comedy, Mean Girls benefits from refreshing honesty and a terrific cast that includes Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Tim Meadows.


National Lampoon’s Animal House
90%

The talents of director John Landis and Saturday Night Live‘s irrepressible John Belushi conspired to create a rambunctious, subversive college comedy that continues to resonate.


National Lampoon’s Vacation
93%

Blessed by a brilliantly befuddled star turn from Chevy Chase (as well as strong supporting work from Randy Quaid and a young Anthony Michael Hall), National Lampoon’s Vacation is one of the more consistent — and thoroughly quotable — screwball comedies of the 1980s.


Nebraska
91%

Elegant in its simplicity and poetic in its message, Nebraska is boosted by a poignant, bittersweet dramatic performance by Will Forte.


Obvious Child
90%

Tackling a sensitive subject with maturity, honesty, and wit, Obvious Child serves as both a showcase for Jenny Slate and a promising debut for writer-director Gillian Robespierre.


Punch-Drunk Love
79%

Odd, touching, and unique, Punch-Drunk Love is also delightfully funny, utilizing Adam Sandler’s comic persona to explore the life of a lonely guy who finds love.


School of Rock
92%

Full of high spirits and loads of heart School of Rock into a hilarious, rocking good time, thanks in part to sharp supporting work from Joan Cusack and Sarah Silverman.


Shrek 2
89%

Topical humor and exuberant vocal performances from Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy help to make Shrek 2 a funny, smart animated tale for audiences of all ages.


The Skeleton Twins
86%

Led by powerful performances from Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader, The Skeleton Twins effectively mines laughs and tears from family drama.


This Is Spinal Tap
95%

Smartly directed, brilliantly acted, and packed with endlessly quotable moments, This Is Spinal Tap is an all-time comedy classic, and represents a high water mark for stars Michael McKean, Christopher Guest, and Harry Shearer.


Trading Places
88%

Featuring deft interplay between Eddie Murphy and Dan Dan Aykroyd, Trading Places is an immensely appealing social satire.


The Truth About Cats and Dogs
85%

Sharp, witty, and charming, The Truth About Cats and Dogs features a standout performance from Janeane Garofalo.


Wayne’s World
79%

An oddball comedy that revels in its silliness and memorable catch phrases, Wayne’s World is also fondly regarded because of its endearing leads — played with infectious goofiness by Mike Myers and Dana Carvey.


Whip It
84%

Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut has enough charm, energy, and good-natured humor to transcend its many cliches — and it features fine supporting performances by Kristen Wiig and Jimmy Fallon.

Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig star in The Skeleton Twins in limited release this week. Referencing a lip-synching scene in the film, Kristen Wiig talks about what she sings when she’s by herself, and Bill takes that information and runs with it.


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    Ep. 050 – New movies, plus Dolphin Tale 2 & Skeleton Twins stars
    This week starts off with critics’ reactions to Dolphin Tale 2, and then Grae shares her interviews with cast members Ashley Judd, Harry Connick, Jr. and Morgan Freeman. The team talks about the cancelled screenings for No Good Deed, and Grae shares another interview, this time with Taraji P. Henson. Then the team talks about The Skeleton Twins and Grae shares a pretty ridiculous interview with stars Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig.

    This week at the movies, we’ve got an animal rescue drama (Dolphin Tale 2, starring Harry Connick Jr. and Morgan Freeman) and a home invasion thriller (No Good Deed, starring Taraji P. Henson and Idris Elba). What do the critics have to say?



    Dolphin Tale 2

    66%

    At a time when so much children’s entertainment can feel hyperactive and shrill, Dolphin Tale 2 seems decidedly old fashioned. The critics say that’s mostly a good thing — this gentle, thoughtful family drama isn’t particularly exciting, but it looks great and delivers positive messages with a minimum of schlock. Since being rescued and rehabilitated in the first film, Winter is doing just fine, but her companion has recently died. Thus, our heroes — a team comprised of marine biologists and animal rescue staffers — need to find Winter a new companion or she will be removed from the aquarium as required by law. The pundits say that while Dolphin Tale 2 is narratively thin and slackly paced, its heartfelt, inspirational story is likely to resonate with families. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which count down Morgan Freeman’s best-reviewed films, and watch our video interviews with Freeman and co-stars Harry Connick Jr. and Ashley Judd.)



    No Good Deed

    12%

    It looks like the people behind No Good Deed were afraid it would be punished by the critics, since it wasn’t screened prior to its release in theaters. It’s the story of an ex-district attorney (Taraji P. Henson) who tries to help a stranger (Idris Elba) who claims to have car trouble. However, once she invites him into her home, his real motives prove to be much more sinister. It’s time to guess the Tomatometer!

    Also opening this week in limited release:

    • Born To Fly, a documentary about the acrobatic group Extreme Action Company, is at 100 percent.
    • Stray Dogs, a drama about a man who works as a human billboard to support his children on the streets of Taipei, is at 93 percent.
    • The Skeleton Twins, starring Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader in a dramedy about estranged twins who reunite as both are in the midst of personal problems, is Certified Fresh at 88 percent.
    • Honeymoon, starring Harry Treadaway and Rose Leslie in a horror film about a woman who begins to act strangely while in a remote getaway with her new husband, is at 79 percent.
    • I Am Eleven, a documentary featuring interviews with 11-year-olds throughout the world, is at 79 percent.
    • The Drop, starring Tom Hardy and James Gandolfini in a crime drama about a late-night robbery that stirs up trouble within the neighborhood demimonde, is at 78 percent.
    • The Green Prince, a documentary about the collaboration between a member of Hamas and an Israeli secret service agent, is at 73 percent.
    • The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby, starring Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy in a drama that explores a couple’s relationship from both sides, is at 71 percent.
    • My Old Lady, starring Kevin Kline and Maggie Smith in a dramedy about a man who inherits an apartment in Paris only to find an elderly woman squatting there, is at 63 percent.
    • Bird People, starring Josh Charles in a drama about a businessman who decides to leave his life behind and hole up in an airport hotel, is at 60 percent.
    • Take Me to the River, a documentary about Memphis’ influential homegrown R&B sound, is at 50 percent.
    • Swearnet: The Movie, a comedy in which the Trailer Park Boys start an internet channel that features outrageous content, is at 29 percent.
    • At The Devil’s Door, a horror film about a real estate agent who discovers the house she’s trying to sell has a sinister secret, is at 14 percent.

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