While on a long plane flight home last week, I watched every single film trailer to get the scoop on the latest movies for you. Oscar season is upon us and there are a lot of excellent titles that you can borrow from your library. For your benefit, I have also researched reviews of these films and have listed them in order of popularity with the critics and the public alike. Here goes!
Iris is about fashion icon Iris Apfel: the quick-witted, flamboyantly dressed 93-year-old style maven with an out-sized presence on the New York & Palm Beach fashion scenes. Despite the abundance of glamour in her current life, Iris continues to embrace the values and work ethic established in her middle-class Queens upbringing during the Great Depression. If you are a fan of documentaries, art, fashion, individuality or life-long love, borrow this brilliant film! Great quote: “My mother worshiped at the altar of accessories!”
Do you like Hitchcock? The Gift is a smart thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. In fact, it was just too scary for my husband so we had to turn it off. Simon and Robyn are a young married couple whose life is going just as planned until a chance encounter with an acquaintance from Simon’s high school sends their world into a harrowing tailspin. This is not a story about one individual following a family; it’s about the past following you. “You think you’re done with the past, but the past is not done with you.”
Bridge of Spies stars Tom Hanks as the American attorney tasked with negotiating the release of a U-2 spy plane pilot who was shot down over Russia at the height of the Cold War in this historical drama. Everyone likes this movie and it’s going to be shown at Everett Public Library (February 27th at noon at the Evergreen Branch) as part of Oscar Fest 2016! It is directed by Steven Spielberg and has been nominated for Best Picture. You don’t want to miss this one!
Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation stars the other Tom (Cruise). You’re hooked right from the start with a jaw-dropping opening sequence which looks completely free of computer generated imagery, and a great but sinister twist on the iconic mission briefing. From there, it’s a fun roller coaster ride and although there are plenty of twists and turns to keep the audience guessing, it stays coherent. There were more than a few improbable moments and the bad guys suffer terribly from an inability to shoot straight, but if you’re ready to suspend your disbelief on occasion, it’s a fun movie. Get into the hold line for this popular action film.
Of course, The Martian is a wildly popular movie and deservedly so because the book was so great. After a bad storm blows across Mars, astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead and left behind. Now stuck on a hostile planet he must find a way to signal to Earth and in the meantime, survive on limited supplies. Smart, thrilling, and surprisingly funny, The Martian offers a faithful adaptation of the book that brings out the best in leading man Matt Damon who has been nominated for Best Actor.
Straight Outta Compton is super violent and super profane, but also super popular. It is a very well-directed, provocative and comprehensive biopic that shines with exquisite camera movements and amazing performances to tell this compelling story of the five young men who popularized the gangsta rap movement that came up in the 1980’s. Using brutally honest rhymes and hardcore beats, they put their frustration and anger about life into the most powerful weapon they had: their music. Up for Best Original Screenplay.
Trainwreck is super funny and a decent romantic comedy. It is a typical Judd Apatow movie with its heart in the right place, flawed characters, truthfulness with sharp humor, and hilarious work from Amy Schumer. Amy is a party girl who starts to wonder if there may be something to the monogamy thing when she starts to have feelings for the charming and successful doctor (Bill Hader) she is interviewing for an article. If you liked Bridesmaids, this one’s for you.
Ant Man stars Paul Rudd (Love him!) fully aware of the silliness of someone shrinking down to insect size while remaining a threat to human beings. The last Marvel film of phase 2 decides to just have fun with the concept. The showdown makes great use of the possibilities of people shrinking and growing back to size within seconds and makes for one of the smallest and funniest end fights in movie history.
Evergreen Branch Manager Alan loved Mistress America. This is a wonderful movie filled with excellent performances, some hilarious lines,a fantastic screenplay and sophisticated dialogue, wonderful score and such a big heart. Tracy is a lonely college freshman in New York, having neither the exciting university experience nor the glamorous metropolitan lifestyle she envisioned. But then she is taken in by her soon to be stepsister, Brooke, and she is rescued from her disappointment. Heartwarming!
Aloha stars Bradley Cooper as a celebrated military contractor returning to the site of his greatest career triumph, the U.S. space program in Honolulu, Hawaii. This romantic comedy has something for everyone: love, a space rocket story and a beautiful island setting. It didn’t get great reviews, but I liked it because of the Hawaiian setting and, hey, Bradley Cooper. It is at the bottom of this list, but still worth your time.
That’s all folks! Check out these films and others at the Everett Public Library.