Thursday, June 11, 2009

Movies You Ought to See (for good reasons)

Here are a few movies that I have seen recently that would be good to see. Some of these movies I have not seen recently, but I was reminded of them by seeing some of the others. I stand behind all of these recommendations. I guarantee you will like them, or I'll refund the price you paid to read this blog entry.
  • Doubt- Philip Seymour Hoffman is the best actor in American movies today. He is great, as usual, as a priest accused of sexual abuse with a minority student at his school. Meryl Streep plays the nun who thinks the worst in every situation. She raises suspicions and evil thoughts in every possible situation. Amy Adams plays the young nun who is caught in the middle and doesn't know what to think. Although we never learn whether or not the priest is guilty, we learn and grow a lot in the experience. Pay special attention to the sermons on doubt and gossip.
  • Henry Poole is Here- This could easily become my favorite movie. Luke Wilson is a terminally ill man who has given up on life and hope when his neighbors begin to notice an image of Jesus on the side of his house. Henry deals with his own disease, his impending death, his nosy neighbors and the miracles that start happening in thought-provoking ways. Again, you will be left with as many questions as answers, but the trip is worth it.
  • Leap of Faith- This Steve Martin film of several years ago raises many of the same questions as the Henry Poole movie. Does God heal? Who can you trust? What about a person's motivations? It's fun and funny, but be sure to wear your thinking cap.
  • Up- A great new animated feature in which an elderly man deals with his loneliness and a young boy works through his feelings of abandonment. These issues are packaged in a delightful story with wit and sensitivity.
  • Bella- Although I felt I was being preached at on a couple of occasions, this film is only part propaganda. It is mostly great. The issues surrounding abortion are dealt with seriously without flinching. Nina is a pregnant waitress who is fired for being late. She is befriended by the restaurant's chef. As the two of them spend 24 hours together we see the conflicts in Nina's life, as well as how great Jose (the chef) is. It does not have a traditional story book ending, but you will not be disappointed.

Watch one. Watch them all.

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