My wife and I have no watched a movie in 5 years. What should we see?
August 24, 2012 2:17 AM   Subscribe

My wife and I have no watched a movie in 5 years. What should we see?

American, foreign, what-have-you. Don't care the genre, just want them to be very very good.
posted by BigBrownBear to Media & Arts (40 answers total) 35 users marked this as a favorite
Sokurov's Faust was one of the most enjoyable films from this year for me. Other than that you need to give us some context.
posted by Dr Dracator at 2:26 AM on August 24, 2012

I would suggest browsing through the lists of top rated movies per year on aggregation sites such as MetaCritic and RottenTomatoes (those links go to the correct pages).

This is what I use when determining what movies to watch, and I'm very rarely disappointed. If a film hits toward the top of both lists, you can almost guarantee it's good. Just read it briefly to see if it will intersect with both of your interests.
posted by fakelvis at 2:40 AM on August 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Recent films I have really enjoyed and which have been critically applauded:

Tree of Life
We need to talk about Kevin
Winter's Bone
posted by biffa at 2:40 AM on August 24, 2012 [2 favorites]

Seconding Winter's Bone. Also Man on Wire.
posted by oneirodynia at 3:17 AM on August 24, 2012 [2 favorites]

I'm going to recommend some Pixar which sounds a bit ridiculous for two adults, I know but Toy Story 3, Up and Wall-E were three of the best movies of the past five years in terms of story and visuals. On the surface, they're kids movies, but I promise they are so much more than that. Plus, How To Train Your Dragon from Dreamworks was pretty special too. It's been a good couple of years in animation.

In terms of other great less dramatic movies, The Avengers, X-men First Class, Star Trek, Easy A, Bridesmaids, and 21 Jump Street are the best fun movies I've seen in the last few years.

On the more dramatic side I loved The Social Network, Inception, 50/50, District 9 and Drive.
posted by GilvearSt at 4:37 AM on August 24, 2012 [6 favorites]

Pixar, Miyazaki, Avengers, Scott Pilgrim.
posted by Sebmojo at 4:43 AM on August 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

If you want something, good, weird, darkly funny, and full of foul language, you can't go wrong with In Bruges.
posted by phunniemee at 5:52 AM on August 24, 2012 [5 favorites]

In The Mood For Love
posted by griphus at 6:42 AM on August 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Loved Scott Pilgrim, Wall-E and Winter's Bone. We Need to Talk About Kevin was much better (..much!) in book form.

For documentaries I'd take a look at Dear Zachary (video trailer), but it's not an easy watch. Also the Paradise Lost documentaries are great, if you haven't seen them yet.

If you're in the mood for darkly funny, I think In Bruges was great, and so was In the Loop.
posted by getawaysticks at 6:43 AM on August 24, 2012

Oh, wait, ITMFL is from 12 years ago. Damn, where does the time go.

I'll second Winter's Bone then.
posted by griphus at 6:46 AM on August 24, 2012

No Country For Old Men, There Will Be Blood, Avatar, The King's Speech, Bridesmaids, The Wrestler.
posted by I_Zimbra at 6:50 AM on August 24, 2012 [4 favorites]

I like I_Zimbra's list, with the exception of There Will Be Blood (which isn't bad but not my type of movie).

Regarding the suggestion of Tree of Life, I think you should think twice about that as an option - for a certain type of person, that movie may be great, but for a lot of people, it is just a long, drawn-out, way-over-abstract and bizarre film. Lovely cinematography though but it doesn't get you past the rest. If you didn't like other Terence Malick films (i.e. the Thin Red Line) do not see this.

I can add a few suggestions:
- The Hurt Locker
- Up In the Air
- Slumdog Millionaire
- Juno
posted by treehorn+bunny at 7:03 AM on August 24, 2012 [2 favorites]

Up is the only film that has made me cry since Life is Beautiful, it is probably the best film I've seen in 5 years. You'll cry the first 10 minutes, and then feel amazing about life for the rest of the film

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is the most entertaining film I've seen in years, especially if you were a big video game person when you were younger (or now). It's ridiculous and fast paced, with a ton of great visual FX.

No Country For Old Men and There Will Be Blood are both fantastic. Dark and visceral.

Inception and District 9 are both fantastic Sci-fi films. Xmen First Class is also great, and doesn't require you to have any comic knowledge to really appreciate it, since it is the story of how it all comes together.

Tree of life is certainly a well made piece of art, but me and my wife almost turned it off several times. It's like the best student art film ever made. The first half hour is like a Nova special, the middle is a slow moving family drama story told with very little narrative, and the end is just 20 minutes of people hugging and crying and, well, I'm not exactly sure. If you go into it wanting to take a very slow ride with something visually stunning, it's great. If you want any sort of story that goes anywhere, or any sort of resolution, than you'll want to skip it.
posted by markblasco at 7:29 AM on August 24, 2012

The best, easiest and most reliable way of not getting a stinker is to start at the top of the IMDb top 250 and work your way down.
posted by mr_silver at 7:31 AM on August 24, 2012

I think the three most important American films of the last five years are There Will Be Blood, The Social Network, and The Tree of Life.
posted by Chenko at 7:35 AM on August 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

posted by spaltavian at 7:40 AM on August 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Drive (recent), Vertigo (classic)
posted by oceanjesse at 8:13 AM on August 24, 2012

Could you list some movies you've seen and enjoyed? "Very very good" is rather subjective.
posted by The corpse in the library at 8:41 AM on August 24, 2012 [2 favorites]

posted by c'mon sea legs at 9:09 AM on August 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Sunshine Cleaning wasn't bad. More recently, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Midnight In Paris and Salmon Fishing in Yemen.
posted by Rash at 9:22 AM on August 24, 2012

Date Night was good laughs, although it's admittedly dumb in places. Steve Correll has been on a bit of a roll lately.
posted by acm at 10:11 AM on August 24, 2012

Was this a conscious decision, something that "just happened", forced by circumstances, or something else? That may influence what people would want to recommend.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 10:23 AM on August 24, 2012

The Beasts of the Southern Wild was the best movie I have seen in a decade.
posted by Seamus at 10:31 AM on August 24, 2012

Not easy watches but very good movies on difficult subjects...The Land of Blood and Honey, Incendies, Hurt Locker...
posted by Muirwylde at 10:42 AM on August 24, 2012

A Seperation, Monsuier Lazhar
posted by dydecker at 10:45 AM on August 24, 2012

let the right one in
two lovers
martha marcy may marlene
posted by timsneezed at 11:07 AM on August 24, 2012

Could you list some movies you've seen and enjoyed? "Very very good" is rather subjective.

I have different lists that are only appropriate to what people like. I'm seconding a call for an idea of what you like. I'm not going to watch a heavy French drama to someone who prefers light comedy.
posted by Meep! Eek! at 11:15 AM on August 24, 2012

The Avengers DVD will be out on Sept. 25th.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:47 PM on August 24, 2012

I just watched and greatly enjoyed the Baader Meinhof Complex which is about Germany's 70s home grown terrorists, the Red Army Faction. In German, with subtitles, but engrossing, interesting and fast-paced.
posted by rhymer at 3:25 PM on August 24, 2012 [2 favorites]

I watch a lot of films, but Certified Copy made me flex some movie-watching muscles that I haven’t exercised in a long time. It consists mostly of dialog between the two leads, if you like that sort of thing. But beyond that, I suggest you don’t read about it before hand; the less you know going in, the better.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 3:40 PM on August 24, 2012

If you like really really dry comedy (and very very few do) check out Punching the Clown

If you love this cooking video by Henry Phillips then you'll probably love the movie.
posted by any major dude at 6:59 PM on August 24, 2012

Never Let Me Go.
posted by eugenen at 11:15 PM on August 24, 2012

Broken record here. I've probably mentioned this too many times in too many AskMe's, but I just loved Lars and the Real Girl (2007). Funny and more than a little quirky. How this young man's family, friends and neighbors struggle to overcome their initial reactions to this unusual relationship and treat Lars and his 'girlfriend' with sympathy and compassion and love makes it one of the most moving films I've seen in awhile. Ryan Gosling's performance is perfectly pitched in a difficult role. Also with the always wonderful Patricia Clarkson.
posted by marsha56 at 10:58 AM on August 25, 2012

I'll just repost my answer from a related thread -- all but one films are older than five years, but not by much, so there might not have been all that many opportunities for you to see them:

I have two standard suggestions for absolutely wonderful films from the recent years that people have quite possibly missed.

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World sounds to my ear like the name of a boring film but by accident I nevertheless saw it and it is easily one of the best adventure films I've seen. Like some other good films mostly situated in a narrow setting (Casablanca and Alien come to mind), the environment (British navy warship in the Napoleonic wars) really comes alive in this film.

Another standout quality is the interaction between the two lead characters which is very convincing, almost like a character in its own right.

Pride & Prejudice (2005) is the other film. What can I say, it's just perfect in pretty much every respect :). Particularly if you happen the mood for a 'cozy' film, you have no option but to see this.

Some less non-obvious suggestions would be There Will Be Blood and Mulholland Drive which at the moment are tied for my number one favorite spot.
posted by Anything at 3:36 PM on August 25, 2012

I'll also have to agree about The Baader Meinhof Complex, mentioned above. Stunning film.
posted by Anything at 3:40 PM on August 25, 2012

The Fall was released a little over 5 years ago, but you might not have seen it - it seems like most folks missed it. It's the most visually stunning movie I've ever seen. The story meanders a bit but it's still a gorgeous film.
posted by kbar1 at 5:40 PM on August 25, 2012

Also a little over fives years old...The Lives of Others is quite intriguing.
posted by goodsearch at 10:12 PM on August 26, 2012

A large list narrowed to 10, in no particular order:

The Dark Knight
Toy Story 3
Man on Wire
The Artist
Midnight in Paris
Where the Wild Things Are
posted by cnc at 12:47 PM on August 28, 2012

Allow me to fill in some that I was surprised everyone forgot:

Inglourious Basterds, Gran Torino, Warrior, Into the Wild, Shutter Island, Moon, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Man from Earth, The Fighter, Hot Fuzz, Taken, Iron Man, Kick-Ass, The Hangover, Changeling, American Gangster, 3:10 to Yuma, True Grit, Gone Baby Gone, 127 Hours, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Zombieland, Grindhouse, Eastern Promises, Zodiac, Milk, Watchmen, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Town, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Tucker and Dale vs Evil, [rec], Felon, Sherlock Holmes.
posted by AdamOddo at 1:10 PM on August 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

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