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monkey-knife-new-2012-logoMuch like two fierce blind monkeys locked in combat, movies can often result in closed-minded argument. What I mean is movies have become these massive things that are targeted to strictly turn off your brain and collect your money. Don’t get me wrong, I love mindless money wasting entertainment as much as the next consumer, but I also like to think on occasion.

It seems to me that movies are moving away from the “let’s be clever” path at an alarming rate. I know that this has much to do with the fact that they want to reach the masses and do not want to exclude anyone. With that mind-set they have to think about the people who wont understand clever. You know the ones, you may even be one, the people who poop on a perfectly good movie because you didn’t get it. In my experience when this happens to a person the ridicule the movie and call it “bad” and it is all because it made you feel dumb.

I love movies and I like to talk about them. The thing is that so many of these block busters have little to talk about. Even the comic book based ones have little to discuss. The best you can get is how they slipped in tributes to the original cannon or how the two mediums compare. I like to talk about a movie that is a true creative work, something where I can share what I think was intended or how I interpret the message of the creator. It is fun to compare notes with fellow movie buffs and see how we differ. Here is my take on good movies that made you think and entertained;

5. Jeff Who Lives at Home – For anyone who has refused to grow up before, this is MV5BMTgyNzQ0MjY5Ml5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNDgyNzkyNw@@._V1_SX214_a good movie to see. Jason Segel plays Jeff, a 30-year-old who live with his mom and does nothing with his life. He believes in destiny and signs and is sort of an overall loser in the movie. He is perfectly paired with his brother Pat, played by Ed Helms, who seemingly has it “together” but is just as much of a mess. It is near torture as you watch each of these guys make terrible choices and get into various uncomfortable situations but in the end they learn valuable lessons and grow as people.

I would not call this a “funny” movie in any traditional sense. As a guy who did not start to grow up until I was 25 I was able to get some of the subtle humor and I found that entertaining. Over all it is a heart warming “coming of age” movie and you feel for the characters.

4. Secret Window – Mort Rainey, Johnny Depp, is harassed for plagiarism by his MV5BMTU5NDY4MjAxNl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMDQ0ODUyMQ@@._V1_SY317_CR1,0,214,317_unknown accuser. He starts out to prove he is innocent all while avoiding his violent counterpart.

This one was just fun to watch. A mystery writer plunged into a real life mystery thriller himself. At some point I started to feel uneasy while watching the movie as Mort starts to spiral deeper and deeper into a state of craziness.

3. The Believer – This is a film about a young intelligent man who questions and MV5BMTQ0MDU2ODIxMF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNDgwMDAwMQ@@._V1_SY317_CR5,0,214,317_rejects the teachings an beliefs of his youth. Ryan Gosling, plays Daniel Balint, a Jewish  man who becomes a violent Neo-Nazi. Struggling with his past and his inability cope with his feelings of anger and confusion he continues to make questionable life decisions. You see that at some point he struggles with his past and his childhood beliefs only causing him to dig deeper into the underbelly of fascism.

I saw this movie when I was in my early twenties and I was living on my own for the first time. I had started to question my own beliefs and morals and found that on some level I could relate to Daniel. I was never a violent person and I still am not but his struggle to understand things and desire to reject what others had told him as a child seems to be a common occurrence in young adults. For me it put my life into perspective and taught me that, with patients I will find what I am looking for.

2. Clerks – Another coming of age movie based on two small town clerks who MV5BMTg2NTQ5NjAzMF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwODU1OTc4._V1_SY317_CR5,0,214,317_waste their days away talking about what Star Wars movie was the best and who has the hardest job. Through out the movie they come to realize that the rest of the people they went to high school with are growing up and moving on.

I loved this movie since high school. For me it can still define me on some level since I still talk geek and complain about my job while dong little to change it. Over my life I tried to hang on to friends and memories that were long past and it took me a while to let them go. Like Dante (Brian O’Halloran) and Randal (Jeff Anderson) I eventually realized that I need to let go of the past and grow up if I ever want my life to improve.

1. Adam – A young brilliant man, Adam (Hugh Dancy) with Asperger’s syndrome MV5BMTkzNzk4NDYwNl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwOTE2MTY1Mg@@._V1_SX214_loses his father, his one solid constant in his life. As he struggles to deal with the loss and the disruption to his life he meets a pretty neighbor Beth (Rose Byrne) who develops a relationship with him. They deal with complications like confronting his disorder and coping with his behaviors.

This is a happy/sad movie for me. I loved it all and it made me really want to see them develop an understanding to the point where they could make it work. They both make some line crossing mistakes that cause some serious friction between them. In the end it is still happy for everyone but it is not then ending you would necessarily expect or want. This has some seriously good acting and great character development.  It can also shine some light on the potential complexities of a relationship.

There you have it folks. I love these movies and they are ones that I like to sit and watch when I still prefer my brain functioning during the show. I would hardly call them my all time movie favorites but they are still worth watching and certainly worth talking about.

Thank you for reading,

Tom (Animockery) Dorsey