As the spring semester begins, and students start to settle into their routines, you may find that you have nothing to do until the inevitable avalanche of assignments, readings and quizzes begin to take over the next five months of your life.
If you’re like me, then watching a movie is as good as any choice to pass the time. Unfortunately for avid moviegoers, January tends to be either a dumping ground for bad movies or awards contenders, not exactly great motivators to step outside into the frigid cold.
Lucky for you, it’s 2019 and the streaming options are as good as ever. Here are some familiar titles to watch as well as some hidden gems to expand your horizons.
“Bird Box” — I don’t know what a “Bird Box” is, but I do know that I don’t care. However, everyone else in the world seems to care, and if you want to understand the last couple weeks’ worth of memes, then you might as well join the party and watch this Sandra Bullock tries to find safety while avoiding scary monsters film, blindfold optional.
“Avengers: Infinity War” — Do I really have to describe this one? Why watch a new movie when you can watch Iron Man, Captain America and friends take on the Mad Titan Thanos for the billionth time? “Avengers: Endgame” comes out in just a few months, so you might as well pass the time by watching this galactic battle on repeat.
“Roma” — One of former U.S. President Barack Obama’s favorites of 2018, this film from director Alfonso Cuaron (“Gravity”; “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”) is a lock to make some noise come Oscar time. It already picked up wins for best director and best foreign film at the Golden Globes. Yes, that means it’s subtitled, but that shouldn’t deter you. Neither should the fact that it’s in black and white. The film is a semi-autobiographical take on Cuaron’s childhood in 1970s Mexico City and follows the life of a live-in housekeeper to a middle-class family. If it’s good enough for Barry O, then it’s probably good enough for you.
“Support the Girls” — Another one of Barack Obama’s favorites, this is one of my personal favorites of 2018. Regina Hall is wonderful as an overworked, under-appreciated general manager of a fictional bar and grill much like Hooters. She must handle all the drama of that, as well as deal with a hard to work with owner, a way too eager new employee and put out minor crises as they seemingly keep popping up, all while trying to balance between caring and caring too much.
“Sorry to Bother You” — Starring Lakeith Stanfield (“Get Out”; Straight Outta Compton”), “Sorry to Bother You” seems like a normal movie about the near future where cheap labor is still important to the success of mega corporations and the struggle to just get by is far too real, but then it gets weird. Like really weird. To say more would spoil the film, but just know that it’s more than just about Stanfield’s character using his “white voice” as a telemarketer. Did I mention that it gets really weird?
“Leave No Trace” — This movie is incredible. It follows a father and daughter as they are forced to transition from living out in the woods and into society. It’s soft and subtle, and definitely should be watched. Debra Granik’s direction is on point, with the film’s perfect 100 percent “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes as evidence. Ben Foster’s portrayal of a quiet veteran with PTSD is understated but moving nonetheless. Newcomer Thomasin McKenzie plays his daughter and is a star in the making. Just go watch it.