The Top 5 Most Underrated Movies of All Time

(Some of you might be sensing a theme, here…)

I will tell you why I chose each one. They are all based on my opinion alone, and what I like to see in a movie; which consists of a great storyline, an unpredictable ending, and a cast who can pull off both of those with witty dialogue. I don’t do explosions and I can’t stand cheap nudity. So NO: ‘Eyes Wide Shut will not be on this list, although it is widely acknowledged as an underrated movie.

No. 5 is, however, a Kubrick movie. It’s’ called ‘Paths Of Glory’ and features Kirk Douglas in his first collaboration with the famous, dead director. ‘Paths Of Glory’ is the tale of a few soldiers wrongly tried for treason by their commanding officers. All are expected to perpetrate the ruse, to make an example of these soldiers and boost morale, but Douglas refuses, causing discord. It’s beautifully filmed and well-told.

No. 4 is called Waking Life. It’s a Richard Linklater film. If you know him at all, it’s probably from ‘Dazed and Confused’ or (less likely, but still possible) ‘A Scanner, Darkly’. Scanner would have made this list if it was less known. The fact is, hardly anyone I have ever met has seen ‘Waking Life’, until I convince them to watch it with me. It’s a story of random outbursts seen from the point of view of a young man who appears to be dreaming. The whole movie is full of interesting concepts, shared with the audience through a lucid dream…the result, of course, is rather open-ended. I still have debates about the ending of that film.

No. 3 is ‘The Virgin Suicides’, directed by one of my favorites; Sophia Coppola. Sophia’s cast endears us from the beginning, throughout the plight of pubescent teenage girls locked away by their fervently religious and stalwart, strict mother. From James Woods (the passive father, wanting to help, but not knowing how), to the boys who watch them from across the street, to Kirsten Dunst as the insatiable Lux, the girls enchant from the very first line.

No. 2 is a Guy Pierce winner. ‘Memento’; one of Christopher Nolan’s first flicks (I guess I didn’t keep to form, here, ‘The Following’ is probably less known) stunned me with its backward motion and it’s unbelievable beginning (which actually was the ending; literally filmed backwards, that one). It’s a little hard to follow, but completely worth it if you aren’t a victim of insufferable ADD.

NUMBER 1!!! It’s called ‘Big Nothing’. This was suggested to me by Netflix, so I figured I’d give it a shot. That movie had me at the edge of my seat, going, “What the F??? No way that just happened. Oh damn…”. The whole movie was this great storyline full of twists that I, as a writer, couldn’t predict. I got a little bit of the end right, about thirty seconds before it happened, and that was it. That movie is still one of the very best I have ever seen. I never thought David Schwimmer could pull off anything close to his character in that flick. It was hilarious, sickening, and thrilling, all at once.

Give the Indies a chance, folks, otherwise, you never know what you’re missing.



 It’s funny, …

It’s funny, how quickly innovations appear in the name of killing with weaponry and shopping with convenience, versus the lag time left, in the saving of our souls with cures and books.

Medicine was stilted from the get-go, by the killing of home healers in the witch trials throughout the Middle Ages and beyond. We turned to blood-letting barbers in our hour of need, who probably killed more people than they saved.

What has technology handed us? Kids who can’t do more than work a computer. People who can’t live without their smart-phones. We can’t see the world around us…can’t hope for a future…won’t work toward a goal of a better tomorrow, all because we’re too busy with “needs” we invented, who never existed until we made them for ourselves. We play our phone games, text until we’re blue in the phone, manage our nothings on Facebook, and sit there while our minds are ravaged by age, and TV, and God knows what else. Meanwhile, the real things pass us by; a haze of actual beauty, lost in the shuffle of things to do, people to see, and e-books to read.

Don’t let the good things go, for the ease of a world we can so easily lose. Watch out for the sunsets. Gaze at the trees. Embrace the occasional slight wind on your face. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Walk in the ocean. Count your blessings. You never know when they’ll fall away.