It’s the last day of the year and you just want to be in the cozy comfort of your own home. No fireworks. No crowds. No drama. Well, maybe a little drama or a comedy or a thriller or a mystery. We’ve gathered a list of must see classics that are past their copyright, but not past their time. Pop up some popcorn. I like mine in hot butter. Get your wine, blanket, dogs and cats, and significant others and watch them today, tomorrow and all year long.
This is probably why I live in Europe. I always watched films about how wonderful it was here. This one has a spunky beautiful Elizabeth Taylor.
Another of my favourite actors! This time it’s Jimmy Stewart who has an imaginary friend….a human sized rabbit named Harvey.
I found these and lots more on Uncle Earl’s Classic TV Channel. Have a look. If you’re into the history of cinema or TV, you’ll be in heaven.
I found another great place called Open Culture. It’s a treasure trove! Here’s one gem I watched.
Stew’s tips – “for free” if you subscribe to¬†Netflix or Amazon streaming
Here are my top 5 films to watch over New Year’s Eve, not gonna mention the stars as¬†I want you to take them as they come:
1 – It’s Kind of a¬†Funny Story¬†(2010):¬†a poignant piece about a young guy sectioning himself¬†in a psych wing of a hospital. This piece is brave and poignant and touches many¬†of those really good places you want a film to. Great dialogue, good character¬†development, fab message and some great therapy practices undertaken by the¬†staff and the patients; in many ways from my own experience a very realistic¬†depiction of what a ward like this is like. There is a love interest, a mentor,¬†some crazy capers and a touch of altruism. A real feel good movie.
2 – The¬†Angels’ Share¬†(2012): a very tongue-in-cheek Glaswegian comedy about whisky,¬†unemployment, friendship and wild schemes. Some great scenery and some amazing¬†whisky drams. The main character has a streetwise yet intelligent charm, and it¬†is a slow burner that at times will have you cracking up. The opening sequence¬†where a tipsy local argues with the guy over the train tannoy is a great¬†opening to even rival that other Scottish giant Trainspotting.
3 –¬† Saving Mr. Banks¬†(2013):¬†a moving piece about the tension between Walt¬†Disney and the struggling genius behind the Mary Poppins book. A film that¬†transitions countries, cultures, clashing creative styles and family tension.¬†One that may require both tissues at your side and your best shower-singing¬†voice.
The last two are ones that you just have to return to:
4 – The Intouchables¬†(2011):¬†a poignant story about the relationship between a¬†streetwise felon and a disabled millionaire. A relationship that blossoms¬†despite the obvious conflicts in their backgrounds. One of those movies that had¬†me cheering for both the main characters, and switching my loyalties dependent¬†on the way the narrative progresses.
5 – Herr Lehmann¬†(2003): despite the more famous German films being Run Lola¬†Run, Goodbye Lenin¬†and The Lives of Others, this film has an element of the¬†Big Lebowski about it and the Littlest Hobo mixed in with a very retro run-down¬†setting of DDR Berlin. Again, a slow burner that will have you cracking up with¬†the dark but madcap humour, i.e. due to the main character’s own conflicts and¬†narrative, he seems oblivious to the fall of the Berlin Wall. This in itself is a¬†reason to watch how it plays out.
Dear reader – as an immigrant to Germany the last film really will make you¬†understand a bit more about how it must have been like to live in this uniquely¬†divided society, and helped me understand not only the Berliners when I was¬†living there, but also to some extent guys in our village city.
Enjoy, and happy watching!