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Movies that make me cry

1 Dec

There are some very random movies that bring me to tears and most of them play around the holidays.  Tonight one of those movies was on tv.  And even though I own this movie on DVD, I felt compelled to watch the last half of it, because that was when I saw it on the guide.  So here are my movies… holiday edition… that make me cry.

1.  The Holiday

The Holiday (2006) Poster

This is the one that was on tonight and the number one makes me cry, especially around Christmas, but honestly any time it’s on.  It’s not sad at all.  For some reason the story just makes me get all teared up.  Maybe it’s jealousy because I’d really like to go on a holiday to the UK and meet Jude Law and have him fall in love with me in a matter of two weeks.  I have a rich fantasy life, leave me alone.  I just really love to watch this movie.  I know I’m not going to meet Jude Law but I would like to do a trip like this someday.  Just go someplace for a few weeks and actually get to know people who live there.

2.  Love Actually

Love Actually (2003) Poster

Another movie featuring Brits.  I do love a good British accent.  Here’s a movie with Andy Lincoln before he was killing zombies on Walking Dead.  And he was one of my favorites in this movie, he was adorable in it.  But really, the story that gets me crying every time is the one with the little boy.  It’s just far too adorable.

3.  Any Harry Potter Movie

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) Poster

I apparently have a thing with British people.  If you want to get down to it, Scottish and Irish too, I love those accents.  I don’t know why these movies get me.  Maybe it’s because I loved the books so much.  So when I watch the movies (and they are ALWAYS on in December, like 20 times on ABC Family) I get a little nostalgic.

4.  Meet me in St. Louis

Meet Me in St. Louis (1944) Poster

Judy Garland sings “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and I lose it every time.  Again, this isn’t a holiday movie, but it tends to be on TCM at some point in December and I always tune in.

4.  Polar Express

The Polar Express (2004) Poster

Yes I put an animated movie on here.  It’s an awesome holiday movie, a little boy who needs to find his belief in the magic of Christmas again.  I love to watch this and I will at least once or twice (maybe more this year since I’ll be in that stupid sling).  This one makes me cry every time I watch it.

Speaking of the sling, I’m having my surgery on Thursday, so I’m not sure how much I’ll be writing.  I’ll have plenty of time and I will be catching up on all of those summer movies that I missed, I’m just not sure how easy it’ll be for me to type, we shall see.  I certainly won’t be cooking 🙂

How about you, what movies tend to make you cry?

Fall/Winter 2013 Movies

17 Sep

As we enter Oscar and holiday season, there will be lots of great movies coming out!  Here are the movies that I’m most excited to see.  I’ve split the list, the ones up top are the ones I’ll most definitely make time for in the theater.  The rest of the list are movies I really want to see but may not make it to depending on time!

Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Nov 22)

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire begins as Katniss Everdeen has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark. Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a “Victor’s Tour” of the districts. Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) – a competition that could change Panem forever.

I’m excited to see this one.  Loved the books and loved the first movie, so I’m hoping I like this one as well.  I’m curious to see how the create the arena as I have a very specific picture in my head from the books.

Enders Game (Nov 1)

A brilliant young strategist rises to the top of his class in Battle School while training to defend Earth against hostile aliens intent on exterminating the entire human race in this sci-fi epic based on the celebrated novel by Orson Scott Card. In the not-too-distant future, our planet has come under attack from a malevolent race of aliens known as the Formics. Incredibly, fearless International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley) sent them fleeing back into the stars, becoming a living legend in the process. But decorated Colonel Hyrum Graff (Harrison Ford) knows that the Formics will soon return even stronger than they were before, and he’s determined to find a new hero who can meet them head on. Enter Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a modest young man with vast untapped potential. Upon being recruited into Battle School, Ender partakes in a grueling series of simulations, effortlessly mastering every challenge presented to him. Celebrated by his peers and respected by his superiors, Ender is quickly promoted to Command School, where the one and only Mazer Rackham provides him with the knowledge and tools needed to save mankind from certain extinction. As the final battle approaches, Ender prepares to embrace his destiny as one of the greatest heroes in the history of planet Earth.

I am so excited to see this movie.  I was excited when it was announced and then SUPER excited when I saw the first trailer.  My friend Brian at work turned me on to this book when I was looking for a good gift for my god son for Christmas.  Asa Butterfield did an Ask Me Anything over on Reddit a few months ago and it sounded like he felt the movie stayed true to the book.  He also seemed like a very down to earth kid.  I hope that they stay as true to the book as possible, the most important element is the ending, it was just so very unexpected and awesome.

Thor: The Dark World (Nov 8) 

Marvel’s “Thor: The Dark World” continues the big-screen adventures of Thor, the Mighty Avenger, as he battles to save Earth and all the Nine Realms from a shadowy enemy that predates the universe itself. In the aftermath of Marvel’s “Thor” and “Marvel’s The Avengers,” Thor fights to restore order across the cosmos…but an ancient race led by the vengeful Malekith returns to plunge the universe back into darkness. Faced with an enemy that even Odin and Asgard cannot withstand, Thor must embark on his most perilous and personal journey yet, one that will reunite him with Jane Foster and force him to sacrifice everything to save us all.

I just like action movies.  Oh, and Chris Hemsworth.  I mean really, he’s just stunning as Thor.  I just expect to be entertained by this one!

The Wolf of Wall Street (Nov 15)

The Wolf of Wall Street (2013) Poster

Martin Scorsese reteams with Leonardo DiCaprio for this adaptation of Jordan Belfort’s memoir about his exploits as a crooked banker. Terence Winter provides the screenplay.

Leo is in this, need I say more?  I do hope that this one earns Leo his much deserved Oscar, the word around town is that this one just may do it.  I’ll actually be shocked if this movie doesn’t turn out a few Oscar nominations.

12 Years a Slave (Oct 18)

Chiwetel Ejiofor stars in the true story of Solomon Northup, a free man in 1800s New York State, who was kidnapped and forced into slavery on a plantation near New Orleans, and his subsequent fight for freedom with the help of a Canadian abolitionist (Brad Pitt). Steve McQueen (Hunger) directed from a script he co-wrote with John Ridley, based in part on Northup‘s memoir.

I really want to see this one, it looks very interesting.  Yet another one that should turn out an Oscar nod or two based on what I’ve seen of it so far.  I tend to really like historical movies, so I have high hopes.

These next ones are movies that I’d really like to see, but based on time, I may not get to see all of them.  So these are a little further down my list than the ones above.

Rush (Sept 20)

The epic action-drama stars Chris Hemsworth as the charismatic Englishman James Hunt and Daniel Brühl (Inglourious Basterds) as the disciplined Austrian perfectionist Niki Lauda, whose clashes on the Grand Prix racetrack epitomized the contrast between these two extraordinary characters, a distinction reflected in their private lives. Set against the sexy and glamorous golden age of Formula 1 racing, Rush portrays the exhilarating true story of two of the greatest rivals the world has ever witnessed—handsome English playboy Hunt and his methodical, brilliant opponent, Lauda.

More Chris Hemsworth!  They are really pushing this one, I’ve seen the trailers in most of the movies I’ve seen lately and I feel like there are ad’s for it on tv constantly.  It looks pretty good, I have absolutely no Grand Prix knowledge, but I think I’d like this movie.

Out of the Furnace (Dec 6)

Poster art for "Out of the Furnace."

A Rust Belt ex-con must choose between escaping a life of poverty and rescuing his brother from a life of crime in this drama from Crazy Heart writer/director Scott Cooper. With the dream of a better life always just out of reach, Russell (Christian Bale) and his younger brother Rodney (Casey Affleck) find their futures taking a grim turn when Russell ends up in jail. Meanwhile, on the outside, Rodney falls in with a notorious group of criminals who threaten to destroy any hope for a better tomorrow. Later, when Russell is released from prison the temptation to cut his ties with the past clashes with his sense of duty to his brother, who is headed down the road to ruin.

I’ve seen the trailer for this a few times now and it looks really good.  As usual Christian Bale goes full on in character.  I’ve rarely seen an actor get so into whatever role he’s playing.  Here’s another one that I’m guessing will turn out a few Oscar nominations.  I really want to see this, I’m hoping I can get to see this in December.

Captain Phillips (Oct 11)

Captain Phillips is director Paul Greengrass’s multi-layered examination of the 2009 hijacking of the U.S. container ship Maersk Alabama by a crew of Somali pirates. It is – through Greengrass’s distinctive lens – simultaneously a pulse-pounding thriller and a complex portrait of the myriad effects of globalization. The film focuses on the relationship between the Alabama’s commanding officer, Captain Richard Phillips (two time Academy Award® winner Tom Hanks), and his Somali counterpart, Muse (Barkhad Abdi). Set on an incontrovertible collision course off the coast of Somalia, both men will find themselves paying the human toll for economic forces outside of their control.

Yet another movie that is being heavily pushed.  I generally like Tom Hanks, and this looks like a very good movie.  I’m curious as to how true to life it will actually be.

Runner Runner (Oct 4)

Believing that he has been swindled, Princeton grad student Richie (Justin Timberlake) goes to Costa Rica to confront online-gambling tycoon Ivan Block (Ben Affleck). Block’s promises of immense wealth and power have a seductive effect on Richie, until he learns the shocking truth about his new mentor. When Richie is coerced by the FBI to help bring Block to justice, he faces the biggest gamble of his life: outmaneuvering the two forces closing in on him.

Mostly, I want to see this because of JT.  It’s definitely a serious role and I do think he is a decent actor.  I have high hopes for this movie and I hope it turns out to be good.  As we know, Ben Affleck movies tend to be hit or miss, so this will likely be either awesome, or really bad.

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (Nov 27)

Nelson Mandela’s life story is told in this adaptation of the South African leader’s autobiography that details his early life, education, 27-year imprisonment, and eventual presidency and rebuilding of the previously segregated country.

Another historical movie.  I have a great deal of respect for Mandela and what he did and went through.  The trailers for this movie have made me want to see this movie.

The Book Thief (Nov 15)

The Book Thief (2013) Poster

A young girl (Sophie Nelisse) living with foster parents (Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson) in Nazi Germany begins collecting forbidden books and sharing them with the Jewish refugee hiding in her home in this war drama adapted from Markus Zusak’s book.

Shockingly, I have not read this book.  I’m going to try to squeeze it in before I see it though.  I love books and movies like this.  While not a true story, it is still historical in that it is set during WW2.

Don Jon (Sept 27)

Jon Martello (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a strong, handsome, good old fashioned guy. His buddies call him Don Jon due to his ability to “pull” a different woman every weekend, but even the finest fling doesn’t compare to the bliss he finds alone in front of the computer watching pornography. Barbara Sugarman (Scarlett Johansson) is a bright, beautiful, good old fashioned girl. Raised on romantic Hollywood movies, she’s determined to find her Prince Charming and ride off into the sunset. Wrestling with good old fashioned expectations of the opposite sex, Jon and Barbara struggle against a media culture full of false fantasies to try and find true intimacy in this unexpected comedy written and directed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

This was a last minute addition, but honestly may end up toward the top of the list.  It looks so funny and I’m guessing has some aspects that all of us who have had to date in the past 15 years have experienced.  I mean I’ll be honest, when I went to Ireland I looked at my friend Sara and said “the movies lied to me.  Ireland was supposed to be full of pubs with cute, charming bartenders and old drunk Irishmen who wanted to tell us stories.”  Most pubs were actually full of middle aged paunchy guys who just wanted to watch their football.  I’ll admit to being slightly disappointed.  I think this movie explores that kind of “fantasy” which I developed.  Damn movies, ruining my life obviously 🙂

Those are the movies I want to see, are you excited to see any of these?!

NOTE: All Synopsis were copied from Fandango

Patriotic Movies

4 Jul

So hopefully you are spending some time with family and/or friends on this little holiday break. For those of you taking a few extra days off and possibly running into some indoor time with the possibility of rain (at least here in Pittsburgh), I figured I’d give you some good ole’ Patriotic movies to watch.

To celebrate July 4, here are some great movies about the awesomeness of America. No movie poster pics today, I’m operating on my phone.

To Kill A Mockingbird

I love Gregory Peck in this movie. And I love the theme of a white lawyer fighting for the rights and life of a black man in the Depression era south. This movie came out in 1962, which would have been a dangerous time in the Civil Rights Movement. While African Americans and some sympathetic white Americans were in the middle of the fight for equal rights there were a number of politicians and organizations fighting to keep them down.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

First off, for those who don’t know, Jimmy Stewart is from the SW PA area, a town outside of Pittsburgh, so I automatically love his movies. Mr. Smith is appointed to a spot in the Senate, filling a vacancy. He soon runs into political machinations and corruption and fights for what he believes in. This is to remind all of us that when we say things like “the good old days”, political corruption is nothing new.

Top Gun

Ok, a non-serious movie finally. The music, the flying, the motorcycle, and oh, the Volleyball scene with a young, hot Val Kilmer! I love this movie, and it has so many great one-liners.

Dazed and Confused

I include this for this two simple reasons. Number one, this is a great coming of age movie. Second is for this quote from their teacher: “OK, guys, one more thing. Hey, this summer when you’re being inendated with all this bi-centennial, fourth of July, bru-ha-ha just remember what you’re celebrating. That’s the fact that a bunch of slave-owning aristocratic white males didn’t want to pay their taxes.”

Born on the Fourth of July

I was probably too young the first time I watched this Oliver Stone movie to really get it. I watched it again when I was much older and was better able to understand how scary coming home from war is. After witnessing the atrocities of war, experiencing life altering injuries and suffering from PTSD before that was something that was really diagnosed, it’s easy to see how Tom Cruise’s real-life character Ron Kovic became an anti-war, human rights activist.

Independence Day

Yes, the Aliens attacked the whole world, but of course it was us American’s who finally destroyed them with our awesome technology. Because I’m a bit of an IT geek, even though the thought of this is preposterous, it was an interesting idea at the time.

Saving Private Ryan

Even though I can’t imagine sending a whole platoon out to save one person, this is a great WWII movie.

The Patriot

A Mel Gibson movie before he went totally crazy. I have to be honest, the main reason I watched this was for Heath Ledger. How funny, two Aussies playing Americans fighting in the American Revolution

Top 10 Movie Soundtracks – According to me

7 Jun

There are so many good movie soundtracks.  After I saw The Great Gatsby, it got me thinking of my favorites.

When I started this list, I thought, I’ll only be able to think of 5 to 10 that’s it.  Then I started to look through my dvd collection and old cd’s and it became 15.  Then I made the mistake of looking at other people’s lists and realized that I’d forgotten one that was better than 10 of the ones on my list and it became 18.  Honestly, I could probably make a list of 50, but I won’t bore you all with that.

If you are a music fan, you should check out my buddy’s blog over at RARA’s Farm.

So here are my top 10 favorite movie soundtracks

10.  Saturday Night Fever

The title song from this movie was the number one song the year I was born, 1978, so I feel that this needs to be on my list.  The thing about older soundtracks like this is that, a lot of times, they prominantly featured  one artist or group.  In this case, it’s the Bee Gee’s in all their chest hair glory.  If you don’t strut like John Travolta did in the beginning of that movie when Stayin’ Alive plays, there is something wrong with you!

9. Garden State

I actually don’t own this soundtrack or movie, but right after it came out I bought The Shins album, Oh, Inverted World, since they are prominently featured on this soundtrack.  Zach Braff, who also wrote, directed and starred in this movie, put together the soundtrack and won a Grammy for the compilation.

8.  Dazed and Confused

What a great 90’s movie.  What, it was set in the 70’s you say?!  But it was such a great reflection of my high school years!  And the soundtrack!  I rediscovered 70’s rock with this movie.  I’d always been a classic rock fan, but this made me remember.  Cherry Bomb, School’s Out  and Slow Rider are some of the great ones on this one and I love every song on this album!

7.  Flashdance

I love this soundtrack, a lot of these songs have gotten me through many workouts.  The two popular songs from this are also my favorites in this case, Maniac and What a Feeling.  I would include this album for these two songs alone!  But each song that was picked moves the movie along.  And maybe I have a soft spot for this since this movie is set in Pittsburgh.

6. Grease

This is the one and only musical to make my list.  Another John Travolta movie!  When I was little, and my childhood friends can attest to this, I would watch this movie on repeat, at least once a month probably from about 8 to 12 years of age.  I knew every song, every dance move and every line of dialogue.  Heck, I bet if I put it on right now I could act out the whole thing with them.  That’s probably because I still LOVE to watch this movie for it’s music.  I can’t pick a favorite song because I love them all.  I suppose if I had to though, it would be a tie between You’re The One That I Want and Summer Nights.  Don’t make me pick between the two.

8. Romeo and Juliet

So many good songs by bands that ruled my radio in the mid-nineties, Garbage, The Cardigans, Everclear, Radiohead…  I love this soundtrack, the theme song from the movie, Kissing You, is a slow, heart wrenching song that features just a voice and a piano.  It just tears at the heartstrings.  Then you jump into Lovefool, a song that was WAY over-played after this movie came out but that I loved anyway and Young Hearts, Run Free.  I can almost remember each scene that these songs accompanied.

4. Pulp Fiction

I think I spent the entire summer of 1995 with this cd in constant rotation in my car.  Son of a Preacher Man was my favorite at the time and still is my favorite on here, mostly because of the memories it brings.  Ahh, to be 16 again.  Urge Overkill’s version of Girl, You’ll be a Woman Soon is amazing and you can never go wrong with Jungle Boogie by Kool and the Gang.  And I just realized that this is the third John Travolta movie to make this list.

3. Dirty Dancing

Yet another movie that is from my childhood.  If I wasn’t watching Grease you can bet I was watching this (or Adventures in Babysitting).  I could also quote this whole movie and honestly thought that I would have a summer like this in the NY Catskills someday.  I can honestly say that I love every song on this, it’s a bunch of oldies (my oldies, things from the 60’s) mixed in with some newer original songs.  Time of My Life, Hungry Eyes, Love is Strange and You Don’t Own me are probably my favorites, but I sincerely love all the songs on this one.  I even like the Patrick Swayze song She’s Like the Wind.  What a great movie and soundtrack.

2. Footloose


And here we have another one that I love every song from.  I definitely have my favorites, three of the songs from this album are currently on my workout list because I was in a Footloose mood last week.  Let’s Hear It for the Boy, Holding Out For a Hero and Dancing in the Sheets are on current rotation, but the title song from this is also fantastic.  I dare you to hear the song Footloose and not want to dance or at least tap your foot.  It’s impossible.  And Kevin Bacon had the moves back in the day.

1. Singles

Here it is, my number one choice.  This is personal for me, I can credit this movie and soundtrack for introducing me to the Seattle grunge scene.  If I had been 18 in 1992 when this movie came out, I would have been inspired to move to Seattle just to be a part of this crowd.  This features Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains and Screaming Trees just to name a few.  If Nirvana had made it’s way onto this album, it would have literally been every band that shaped my music listening preferences.  Given that Cameron Crowe was in front of this movie, writing and directing, I’m not shocked that this amazing soundtrack was put together.  The man is a music lover who got is start writing at Rolling Stone.  As soon as I decided to put this list together, I knew this would be my number one and I’ve been listening to it for the last week now, I forgot how much I loved my 90’s rock.

I thought of a lot more soundtracks that I really like, but they just couldn’t make the top 10.  Trainspotting was on the top 10 list then moved off, then back and then off again.  I really like the soundtrack, but I will stick with the ones on my list (for now).  Some other great ones are A Hard Day’s Night, Purple Rain, Pretty in Pink, Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, The Graduate and The Big Chill.

This was harder to complete than I originally thought it would be, but absolutely worth the work.  It made me go back to some favorite songs and movies that I hadn’t thought of for a while.

So, what is your favorite movie soundtrack?

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