Movies are my love language
Before Sunrise 1995
Before Sunrise does not betray you, it does not make you pine for better days. Rather, it makes you hopeful and wishful for love—whether it’s a one night love, or a lifetime’s love.
Sunrise accomplishes every goal and checks every box in terms of achieving the most out of what it attempts to do. It’s a remarkably beautiful love story that seemingly could happen to any one of us. The conversations are grounded, the characters feel real—as do their connection.
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation 1997
This could be an in-flight movie and I’d still walk out.
The War of the Worlds 1953
I would dare call Byron Haskin's adaptation of The War of the Worlds a better analogue to Japan's Godzilla than King Kong could ever be. Certainly, Kong has the upper-hand in the monster department, but War of the Worlds is a more human story brimming with Atomic Age Americana in all of its Cold War anxiety-addled glory and none of Kong's casual racism.
It's an unnervingly bleak 85-minute ride, as well and packed great of-the-era effects and generally well-acted performances.
In a Lonely Place 1950
In a Lonely Place is peak American noir backed with a peak Humphrey Bogart performance that feels like the most honest and real portrayal of the man himself.
The story is fantastic with an incredibly tense final few minutes. Bogart and co-star Gloria Grahame have great chemistry, and while this is probably the best performance of Bogart's storied career, it's Grahame's emotionally comprehensive performance that elevates it.
If we're talking strictly from a scene-to-scene/minute-to-minute/pound-for-pound perspective, In a Lonely Place is hands down near the top of its decade.
Dog Day Afternoon 1975
Dog Day Afternoon is a ferociously tense and, at times, a shockingly humorous crime/thriller from one of the most underrated American directors of all-time in Sidney Lumet.
The almost one-ish single location story is an impeccably paced 124 minutes and wastes little time heating up. Al Pacino and John Cazale are forces on screen but in tonally opposite ways. While young Pacino gets to flex his range and charisma, it's Cazale casual timidity and distinct and intense sadness as Sal…
A History of Violence 2005
A History of Violence is one of those generationally important movies. I distinctly remember seeing trailers and being able to identify it as a standout film. In the sea of "bad turn of the millennium movies" and even worse, "bad turn of the millennium R-rated movies," this David Cronenberg drama had all the hype of a great R-rated movie coming out the year I, and so many others, turned 17. And it delivered with fantastic reviews, early "best films of…