Every now and then, I discover a magnificent movie that few people have ever seen, either because it’s old, foreign, or it just didn’t get the attention it deserved. Here are a few of my favorites. If you know of any great movies few people have seen, please share them with us. I’m always on the lookout for a good film!
Graveyard of the Fireflies: Two orphans try to survive in Japan during the second world war. This movie is beautiful for its touching story and its stunning art. I have never been so upset at the ending of a movie, though. I didn’t just cry: I sobbed and moaned and my chest got drenched with tears. People in the theater started staring at me.
Ameilie: Ah, how I adore the French. This is a quirky movie about an average woman who uses her wits to help people with their problems in unexpected ways. I watched the edited version, so I can't vouch for it morally.
He Loves me, He Loves me Not: Half of it sucks, half of it will make your jaw drop from the sheer shock of the awesomeness this movie contains. I can’t tell you why it's great without giving it away. You'll have to see it.
Simone: When a film director tries to save his failing career by using a digital actress, he has no idea everyone would think the actress was a real person. This faux woman gives him the fame he desires, until she takes over his life. It’s surprisingly funny.
Paris, Je t’aime: This is a series of shorts about love and France. Some of them are funny, some are sad, and many of them are incredibly clever.
The Great Escape: “Chicken Run” was based on this 1963 film about prisoners in a German camp. It’s a true story about genius escape artists who will not sit in prison quietly.
Spirited Away:This is the most popular work of Hayao Miyazaki, a famous Japanese film writer and director. You should watch all of his movies (for some reason, men love “Princess Mononoke” the best), but you should especially watch this. It's a stunning animated film that won an Oscar for Best Animated Film and an Academy Award. If you love fantasy, you’ll love this masterpiece.
Howl’s Moving Castle: Another masterpiece of Hayao Miyazaki. It was nominated for an Academy Award (and it should have won). When Sophie, a British hatmaker, is turned into an old woman by a jealous witch, she goes on a journey that leads her to Howl, a mysterious wizard with a traveling castle. It’s funny, charming, and beautiful.
Planet of the Apes: This movie rocks the house, but even though it’s an icon in our culture, few people in my generation have seen it. This is unacceptable. If you care anything about the history of American film, you will watch it. Don’t look at the back cover of the DVD, though. It gives away one of the most shocking endings I’ve ever seen in a movie (what were they thinking when they put that there!?!).