We gave up on the summer of junky movies and turned to Blockbuster’s cheapest DVD rental plan instead. For just $8/month, we get two movies delivered and 2 more in-store rentals for free. Thankfully, we’ve uncovered some real gems using the service lately. Here’s a rundown:
Brick – 3 1/2 out of 5 – Joseph Gordon-Leavitt carries this bizarre, amazing, dark, comic, and inventive modern noir tale set against the backdrop of high school.
Lonesome Jim – 4 1/2 out of 5 – My pick for the most criminally under-rated film of 2005. Casey Affleck gives another great performance in this hilariously bittersweet tale of a small-town family. Liv Tyler is as good as always and some excellent supporting performances, crack writing, and wise pacing make this movie a rare, totally enjoyable and redeeming night in a pretend-land that is cringe-inducingly close to reality.
Pride & Prejudice– 4 out of 5 – The millionth re-telling of one of my favorite books, I hesitated to watch this really beautifully-shot period piece, thinking that the classic BBC mini-series was the final say on the material. I was really wrong, as this version stands on its own as a well-written interpretation. Possibly- possibly– better than the BBC mini-series.
Inside Man – 3 1/2 out of 5 – Denzel Washington and Chiwetel Ejiofor crackle in this engrossing, truly original caper. Forget the mediocre or pandering reviews and make this a double feature with my next recommendation.
Confidence – 3 1/2 out of 5 – A slick, intelligent thriller that will keep you guessing from the first scene to the very end. Plus some great performances from stellar actors like Dustin Hoffman, Paul Giammatti, Ed Burns, and Rachel Weisz.
Sarah Silverman: Jesus is Magic – 3 1/2 out of 5 One of the filthiest comedy concert movies ever made, but one of the funniest in recent memory as well. Don’t watch this before familiarizing yourself with Siliverman first- then, watch it soon after.