You’ll also like this movie, I promise.
2022 is halfway over.
That means we’ve already gotten a lot of the heavy hitting, highly anticipated films from this year.
And if you’re anything like me, as great as many of these movies may be, sometimes they just don’t compete with the oldies but goodies. They just don’t make ’em like that anymore.
Sometimes I’d rather be popping something into my VCR instead of getting the Dolby experience.
This list is the best of both worlds. This is not, however, a list of double features as a lot of these movies might not work back to back because of how similar they are.
In which Tom Hanks plays an over-bearing, image-changing manager to a mid-20th century pop sensation.
I’ve become obsessed with quoting Elvis, I do it all the time on The Vince Vaughn-a-thon. Particularly Tom Hanks’ domineering Colonel Tom Parker (“ONE TOW-ZAND CAD-E-LACKS”), who somehow dominates the screen-time despite not being the bio of the biopic.
In That Thing You Do!, Hanks makes but a supporting appearance (in a rare directorial effort), as the manager to The Wonders, the one-hit…wonders behind the title song. Despite the fact that you have to hear that one song over a dozen times, it never gets old. There’s a famous scene where they hear their song on the radio for the first time and their enthusiasm is infectious.
If you liked Elvis, but just couldn’t get over how nasty the lovable Tom Hanks was, you’ll love That Thing You Do!. In fact, everyone will love it — it’s great.
For Taylor’s review of Elvis, click here.
In which an old comic’s favorite gets a twist on its classic noir roots.
If you liked The Batman because it was dark and moody, emo and punk, or grim and gritty — maybe this isn’t the movie for you.
In fact, it’s much closer to Tim Burton’s Batman than Matt Reeves’.
This is maybe more of an “If you like superheroes as detectives, you probably missed Dick Tracy.”
Warren Beatty’s Tracy isn’t a super, he’s a detective. And most people were really into Bob Pattinson putting the detective back in Detective Comics in his caper. Tracy is a lot sillier, more colorful, and classic comic book-y, but it does feature Al Pacino under a ridiculous amount of villainous makeup, a la Colin Farrell’s Penguin.
For The A-Listers’ review of The Batman, click here.
In which the two most beautiful women on the planet named Jennifer fall in love with a homely school teacher under the most ridiculous of circumstances.
In Marry Me, J-Lo plays pop superstar Kat Valdez, ready to marry her equally famous boyfriend, Bastian. But when she learns that he’s been cheating on her, she decides to marry a stranger in the wedding crowd instead.
In The Object of My Affection, Jennifer Aniston plays Nina, pregnant and unhappy with her current boyfriend. When she starts developing a crush on her gay roommate, she starts wondering if she’d rather raise a baby with him instead.
If you can get past the ridiculous premise and the unbelievable will they-won’t they of both films, they’re both lovable and charming.
For Taylor’s review of Marry Me, click here.
In which the Hamlet tale is given a dirty, muddy interpretation.
I wasn’t the biggest fan of Robert Eggers’ The Northman. Although I appreciated going back to the roots of Shakespeare’s Hamlet in the legend of Amleth, I kinda just thought…Shakespeare did it better already. But maybe that’s just the Shakespeare snob in me.
So I present to you…Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Kenneth Branagh’s 1996 Hamlet is definitely the better of the ’90s versions, boasting a runtime of over four hours (and the entire text) and a cast with more stars than the heavens. But the Mel Gibson version from 1990 (directed by Franco Zeffirelli of Romeo and Juliet (1968) and The Taming of the Shrew (1967) fame) is more down-to-earth, rough, and unrefined in its medieval setting — much closer to the vibe of The Northman.
If you can’t get past the Mel Gibson and Franco Zeffirelli of it all (which is perfectly understandable), maybe skip the ’90s and try the 2015 version of Macbeth.
In which blaxploitation films are given a modern-day look.
This is probably more of an “If you like Jackie Brown, you’ll like Alice…” because I’m not sure how many people actually saw Alice in its limited theatrical run, while you’re probably aware of the Tarantino film already.
Jackie Brown gave ’70s blaxploitation star Pam Grier a chance to honor her own career by tackling similar themes from the ’90s point of view.
Alice uses those films for some inspiration as well — to say more than that would be to give it away. But trust that there’s a Grier connection in there as well.
This pairing might be the best double feature (that is, back-to-back screenings) on this list. And the most underrated.
For Patrick’s review of Alice, click here.
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