More Than Your Average Blockbuster

Sometimes you need a movie with more substance than slapstick comedy or b-rate horror. Sometimes you need your Netflix and chill to leave you with a sense of satisfaction and a real emotional impact. A movie that reminds you to live. Here’s five movies that just aren’t talked about enough and will leave you with a new curiosity about life.

1) Room

“I don’t believe in your stinky world”

Room is a 2015 thrilling Canadian drama directed by Lenny Abrahamson and based off a novel by Emma Donoghue (who also wrote the screenplay). The movie follows Jack (Jacob Tremblay) and his mother (Brie Larson) held hostage in a single room containing a bed, wardrobe, kitchen and bathroom. This is all Jack knows, and he calls it Room. Room has no windows, but a single skylight allows he and his mother watch the seasons pass. On Jack’s 5th birthday, his mother decides to tell him the truth about their situation and the outside world. The pair start planning their escape from Room and their captor, Old Nick. Often seen through Jack’s point of view with voice overs, we get in intimate look into the mind of a child and his inability to grasp any kind of reality outside on his imprisonment.

2) Lady Bird

“I wish I could live through something.”

Academy award winning, Lady Bird is an emotional comedic drama directed and written by Greta Gerwig. The 2017 movie follows Christine ‘Lady Bird’ McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) who shamefully hides her poverty from her catholic school friends as she battles her way through high school popularity, losing her virginity and above all her mother. Lady Bird settles on the small life-time moments that every girl experiences growing up, giving a slice-of-life drama that reminds the audience to appreciate every moment, because no matter how bad a place is, you’re going to miss it when it’s gone.

3) The Perks of Being a Wallflower

“Why do nice people choose the wrong people to date?”

Originally a book, author and director Stephan Chbosky creates a character-driven masterpiece with his 2012 movie The Perks of Being a Wallflower. The movie follows an introspective teenager Charlie (Logan Lerman) and his deep, undying love for clever and quirky Sam (Emma Watson). As Charlie watches Sam struggle through unhappy relationships, the viewer slowly gets a sense that Charlie is struggling with more than social awkwardness, as his dark and traumatic past unravels in this beautiful story of lonely people searching for their place in the world.

4) Juno

“Like you’re the one who has to get huge and shove a baby out your vag for someone else.”

2007 rom-com drama Juno directed by Jason Reitman with screenplay by Diablo Cody is a movie about teen pregnancy that breaks all conventions and clichés. The story follows Juno MacGuff (Ellen Page) who learns she is pregnant weeks after losing her virginity to her best friend almost-kinda boyfriend Bleeker (Michael Cera). After failing to go through with an abortion, Juno finds the perfect couple to adopt her baby in a newspaper ad. What makes this movie beyond special is the quirky comedy created through amazing acting, the beautiful sound track, and the real-life emotional impacts of broken relationships and child birth.

5) Her

“What if your butthole was in your armpit?”

The 2013 romantic drama Her was written and directed by Spike Jonze and won the Academy Award for best original screenplay. This movie manages to make an artificial operating system more human and real than most movies can make their ‘human’ characters. Her follows an intellectual man, Thomas Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) who falls madly in love with an operating system, not unlike a hyper intelligent Siri or Bixby we carry in our cellphones today. Her not only asked the questions of what it means to be in love, but it pushes the viewer to want to feel more, love deeper and experience life.

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