A Week at the Movies: Week 2

A Week at the Movies: Week 2

Amelia MacArthur, Staff Writer

To commemorate what we love most about a Friday, here are five movie recommendations from the past months and upcoming movies in theaters to add to your watch list (spoiler-free): 

1. Pearl -directed by Ti West -runtime 102 minutes

In the prequel to Ti West’s frightening movie, X, starring Jenna Ortega and Kid Cudi and produced by A24, Pearl proves to be a movie that maybe no one asked for but something that movie lovers and fans of horror movies need to rekindle the spirit of old grindhouse horrors. Pearl, starring Mia Goth as a Shelly Duvell look-alike, plays a Norman Bates level of insanity as her remote farm life outgrows her and she longs to travel to become an actress in Hollywood. Held down by family life and religious repression, her ambitions soon run blood red in this Texas Chainsaw Massacre-inspired film. With an 88% Rotten Tomatoes review, Goodfellas director Martin Scorsese described the movie in such ways: “I was enthralled, then disturbed, then so unsettled that I had trouble getting to sleep. But I couldn’t stop watching.” Setting the movie up for good opinions and good times.

2. Moonage Daydream -directed by Brett Morgan -runtime 134 minutes

For a cinematic journey through the life of David Bowie, the chameleon-like singer’s never before seen footage is gouged out and reborn into an odyssey. Receiving 90% on Rotten Tomatoes, the philosophical and immersive is a “fever dream of sound and vision,” said Variety. As well as an overwhelming and enthralling presentation of David Bowie to present the side of him that was captivating by the music he made rather than the life he lived. A recommendation for Ziggy Stardust fans.

3. Barbarian -directed by Zach Cregger -runtime 102 minutes

Another recommendation for fans of horror or a fun watch for the weekend comes in the form of Barbarian, a movie about a young woman arriving at her Airbnb late at night to see a double-booked guest already staying there. But as she decides to let him stay, it is not him that she must worry about, but what she will find to later consume her as the vacation continues. A nod to classic horror movies such as Psycho and House, this has been a notable addition to the long list of horrors that have debuted this year, and even within the month. Bill Skarsgard joins the cast to make a piece full of strong violence and gore so a warning before watching. If you can get past, enjoy this homage to arthouse horror!

4. The Woman King -directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood -runtime 134 minutes

To commemorate an induction into the dramatic filmography of director Gina Prince-Bythewood comes The Woman King, the story of an all-female unit of warriors that make up the Dahomey tribe in Africa. Lead by Viola Davis, a powerhouse actress when it comes to picking her characters, delving into their way of life completely, and finalizing her acting with a heartbreaking performance, her starring in this movie is enough for a recommendation as much as the triumphant story it unfolds. Though, the inaccurate history of the tribe in the movie did not reveal the many fallacies the tribe committed in real life, leaving it to be taken as it is, a story that is layered with dramatization and fictionalization but nothing from Hollywood isn’t! So enjoy an emotional performance and the phenomenal work in production. 

5. Avatar -directed by James Cameron -runtime 201 minutes

Coming back to theaters this Friday, Avatar makes its way back into our screens and our memories as an extraordinary evolution of CGI-based presentation of story-telling. As James Cameron swept audiences away with its sensational visual effects and deep meaning involving anti-war and pro-green movements, the re-release is the creation of buzz for Avatar: The Way of the Water, to be released this year on December 16th. To be presented in new, 4K high-dynamic restoration, this will have a two week run for theaters for limited viewing of a masterpiece that truly deserves to be seen in theaters as well as top the charts again for one of the top-grossing movies of all time.