For more than a century, movies have been a mainstay in the world of entertainment, inspiring reactions ranging from fist-pumping cheers to gasp-inducing jump scares. Fast forward to today, and there are so many films to choose from that you could spend every waking moment watching motion pictures and not even begin to scratch the surface. So, because your time is precious, here is a list of hidden movie gems to check out during your next movie night.
Love & The Signal
For you sci-fi fans out there, check out these first two films from phenomenal writer/director William Eubank. Love is a small independent film about a lone American astronaut in a space station orbiting Earth when suddenly, all the lights on the planets’ surface go out. Eubank’s sophomore effort, The Signal, deals with three friends being held in a strange government facility after an apparent alien abduction. Both films boast amazing cinematography and special effects despite their limited budget. If you’re a fan of smart sci-fi, these are definitely worth a watch.
Taking a journey into the world of horror, we have The Babadook. Written and directed by Australian filmmaker Jennifer Kent, The Babadook could’ve just been an exploration into the psyche of a single mother dealing with a difficult child following the tragic death of her husband. But the film goes even further, introducing a storybook monster into the mix. Disturbing, thoughtful, and unrelentingly tense, The Babadook is a must-see for any horror fan.
The Raid & The Raid 2
If you enjoy gritty action movies, you won’t find any better than The Raid and The Raid 2. These two Indonesian films are helmed by Welsh writer/director Gareth Evans and follow the exploits of rookie officer Rama as he battles his way through the Indonesian criminal underworld. With insane action sequences anchored by the rarely seen Indonesian martial art known as Pencak silat, The Raid and The Raid 2 is an unmatched ballet of brutality.
Liberal Arts & Ruby Sparks
When it comes to romantic movies, Liberal Arts and Ruby Sparks are two sides of the same coin. In Liberal Arts, a 35-year-old NYC high school guidance counselor is invited back to his alma mater to celebrate his favorite professor’s retirement. While there, he meets and falls for a 19-year-old student. What follows is a beautiful movie about connection and maturity, best summed up in one line from the film: “I just can’t figure out if it’s because you’re advanced or because I’m stunted.”
On the flipside of the coin, Ruby Sparks is a rom-com with dark undertones. The film, about a writer who literally wishes his dream girl into existence, explores what happens when you create the perfect person for you, but you’re not perfect for them. If you want some existentialism with your romance, Liberal Arts and Ruby Sparks are the way to go.
Final Cut is your standard “boy meets girl” story, with a twist. Created by Hungarian filmmaker György Pálfi, the film is composed of 451 clips from various movies edited together to tell a cohesive narrative. Everyone from Clark Gable to Tom Cruise make an appearance – as do some of your favorite music scores and soundtrack songs. When it comes to movies, Final Cut has a little bit of everything – literally.
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