Why do I love indie movies? There are so many reasons. Independent films are usually more creative and more of the director’s voice tends to come through. (Not Hollywood’s voice) I also like the low budget look and feel that comes with independent film. The content is usually more important that how much money the movie can make. When I get tired of summer blockbuster movies and some of the big budget malarky that comes out, it’s nice to go back and pick a movie that hasn’t been overhyped by the Hollywood machine. I like outlandish heartfelt storytelling and having to think just as much as I like explosions and fight scenes.
So here we go. I listed a handful of movies that I have really enjoyed over the last few years. Maybe you have heard of them, maybe not. Either way, I think these are some good choices for lazy nights after the kids have gone to bed.
Currently On Netflix
This is one of my favorite hidden gems on Netfilx. It’s pretty funny, and the wife and I watch it all the time. It’s a hard “R” for language and little nudity, so keep that in mind. Ned is just a lovable trusting hippie that can’t seem to get it together. He is overly honest and his desire to trust others tends to get him into trouble. His three sisters seem to have perfect lives going for them, and they look down on their brother because he lives what could be seen as a more “simple life.” After a while we see that his sisters are the ones that are failing in their own lives. As it turns out, Ned’s honesty, trust in others, and desire to do good for others leads to good things for the whole family.
Bernie is a very dry, somewhat dark comedy based on a true story. One of the things I love most about this movie is that it does a great job of showing what life in east Texas is all about. The gossip, the accent, the small town life style… it’s all there. Bernie is one of the town’s most beloved residents. After he befriends an extremely grouchy yet very rich widow, everyone in town starts to talk about how odd their friendship is. Marjorie, the widow eventually puts Bernie in charge of her finances and the two start spending almost all their time together. After a while Marjorie puts a lot of stress on Bernie and the demands of being her friend start to wear him out. Bernie eventually snaps and kills Marjorie. Everything after that is more or less about how he almost got away with it. Rotten tomatoes has it very highly rated as a great movie. I don’t think anyone would be disappointed with this one.
Honestly, this is just a good sic-fi movie. If you liked Cloverfield, Godzilla, or The Mist, you will enjoy this one too. Somehow, NASA manages to bring alien life back to Earth. During re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere, the spaceship crashes in Mexico. After that, the aliens create their own habitat that takes over about half of Mexico. The surrounding areas have a hard time containing the “infected area” and keeping the new alien inhabitants from completely taking over. During the movie, we follow a couple as they attempt to get back to the U.S. by traveling through the dangerous alien territory. Overall it’s good story and great use of special effects.
Imagine you could spend a weekend with perfect version of your spouse. (What?!?!? Your spouse isn’t already perfect?) Stay with me here. Would you want the perfect version that is in your head or the actual person you married?
A couple who’s marriage is on the rocks is sent to a cottage for the weekend to get some “alone time.” The only problem is they are not alone. I’ll give you a hint about who it is… It’s them. This was a great movie that explored marital relationships in a truly unique way. It’s not complicated, but it’s a thinker.
Sorry, These Are Not On Netflix
This is easily my favorite movie on this list. I have seen it several times and I love it more every time I watch it. If you in any way can relate to that awkward teenager phase, you will love this movie. It’s very funny with some good dramatic moments in between. 14-year-old Duncan goes on a summer vacation with his mother and her despicable boyfriend. The boyfriend goes out of his way to make Duncan miserable. In an attempt to stay away from the boyfriend, Duncan unexpectedly befriends Owen, the manager of a local water park. Owen, a hilarious outgoing carefree guy is able to help Duncan come out of his shell and learn a little something about himself. Duncan ends up having a great summer than anyone would envy and everyone ends up right where they should be. Awesome movie!!
Another great sci-fi movie on this list, Sunshine has some good action and very intense moments. The sun is dying, meaning Earth and all its inhabitants will soon die too. A group of astronauts decide to head on over to the sun and see if maybe they can “restart” it. On their way, they have some very unfortunate mishaps that lead to almost disastrous results. There are a couple of unexpected plot twists she they find the other spaceship that had seemingly gotten lost trying to complete the exact same mission. There are some pretty interesting surprises that await them on the other ship. This is a can’t miss movie for true sic-fi fans.
Every man should see this movie at some point in his life. All men have that sense of adventure in them. Some men embrace it and some men ignore it, but there is no denying we all have that voice inside that screams, “GO OUTSIDE!”
After graduating from college, Christopher turns his back on a privileged life and rich family to seek out the ultimate adventure. His trip takes him across the country where he meets countless colorful characters that become a part of his life. From working wheat fields to kayaking into Mexico, Christopher’s experiences end up shaping his life and view of the world in some extraordinary ways. By the end of the movie, you have to ask yourself, is Christopher a fearless risk-taker or just another kid that tragically couldn’t conform?
Do you like quirky comedies with a lot of heart? Then you need to give this movie a go. It’s kinda hard to explain the movie without giving away the entire plot. What I can say is that you have never seen anything like this and I have never met anyone that didn’t like it. Lars is an extreme introvert that can’t seem to connect with anyone in town, including his own family. Out of the blue, he tells his brother and sister-in-law that he is bringing home the girl of his dreams. When that girl shows up, everyone is shocked to find out that she is nothing more than a very realistic sex doll. (don’t worry, nothing dirty or weird happens) Lars gives the doll a name, a back story, and even talks to her like she is a real person. Somehow, then entire town goes along with imaginary relationship. In the end, Lars is able to overcome some of his quirks and ends up seeking real relationships with real people.