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Plex today is launching its own ad-supported streaming service, a rival to The Roku Channel, Tubi, Crackle, Vudu’s Movies on Us and others that offer a way to stream movies and TV for free without a subscription. The service will feature several thousand movies and shows from studios like MGM, Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, Lionsgate and Legendary — deals which were previously announced leading up to today’s launch.

Though there are plenty of similar offerings on the market, what makes Plex’s new streaming service unique is its broad availability. Unlike many competitors, Plex has structured its deals in order to stream content outside the U.S. Plex told TechCrunch the majority of its content will stream in some 220 countries worldwide. This immediately makes it the largest ad-supported video service, in terms of reach — if you’re not counting platforms for user-generated video, like YouTube.

Like other free streaming services, Plex’s free content won’t require a subscription or any other commitments, but will instead be fully supported by ads.

Today, the service will feature both pre-roll ads and traditional ad breaks, but Plex promises an ad load that’s 50%-60% less than what you’d otherwise find on broadcast television. Currently, Plex is leveraging ad network partnerships to sell these ads, but says it may move into direct sales in 2020.

The service itself lives right within Plex’s media organization software. This app has evolved over the years to become more than just a DIY media player for home media. Today, Plex organizes your own media collections alongside podcasts, web shows, streaming news and music courtesy of a TIDAL partnership. The free, ad-supported content will now appear on the Plex sidebar under a new “Movies & TV” heading.

In this section, the content is organized in a somewhat Netflix-style layout, with image thumbnails for easy browsing and hubs for finding popular, trending or genre-specific content, for example.

Plex has also introduced several editorially curated hubs, as well as those personalized to the user, based on their cross-platform, cross-content watch history.

In total, there are around 70 hubs that could potentially show up here, Plex says.

Meanwhile, clicking through to each title will show you details like genre, rating, year, length, description and even critic scores and audience ratings from Rotten Tomatoes, among other metadata. The titles will stream in 1080p and you can mark items as played, as you can with personal media.

Sample titles available at launch include a number of classics, cult classics and even award winners, like “Rain Main,” “The Terminator,” “Overboard,” “Frequency,” “Evil Dead” (1 & 2), “Teen Wolf,” plus music concerts and documentaries featuring Taylor Swift, Nicki Minaj, Deadmau5, and more.

The content is available across Plex platforms, including Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, smart TVs,
Android and iOS mobile platforms, Xbox, PlayStation, Amazon Fire TV and others.

“Plex was born out of a passion for media and entertainment, and offering free ad-supported premium movies and TV shows is just the latest step in our mission to bring all your favorite content together in one place,” said Keith Valory, CEO of Plex, in a statement. “What started more than a decade ago as a passion project to make accessing media on connected devices easier has evolved into the most comprehensive streaming platform in the industry, used by millions of people around the world,” he added.

TechCrunch first broke the news regarding Plex’s plans to enter the ad-supported movies market back in January, when it described a strategy similar to that of The Roku Channel.

Today, Plex has 15 million registered households using its service. Though the service is profitable, the percentage of customers who pay for its advanced features through a Plex Pass subscription is much smaller. That’s driven Plex to find new ways to generate revenue from its free users — and ad-supported content is an obvious choice, in that case.

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Plex has added a new content partner for its soon-to-launch ad-supported video service. The company announced this morning its service will now also include movies from Lionsgate, which will join Plex’s existing partner Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution in helping to fill out the forthcoming video-on-demand library.

However, unlike with Warner Bros., whose videos will be limited to U.S. viewers, the deal with Lionsgate is for worldwide streaming. (There may be a few titles with geo-restrictions, Plex noted.)

“Lionsgate is one of the biggest names in the business and we know our millions of users will enjoy free access to their library of movies,” said Keith Valory, CEO of Plex, in a statement. “Plex caters to the most passionate and discerning media lovers all over the world, so it is important for us to be able to bring great content like this together in one beautiful app for all of our users across the globe.”

TechCrunch first reported on Plex’s plans to enter the ad-supported movies market back in January. The company described a strategy that is similar to Roku’s — that is, instead of just facilitating streaming through its platform, it will actually broker deals that bring a selection of free content directly to its users. It can then tap into the ad revenue that’s generated to boost its bottom line as Roku does with The Roku Channel.

Though Plex began as a media organizer, it has, in recent years, expanded to focus on becoming a one-stop-shop for all your media needs. This includes streaming and recording from live TV, streaming music by way of a TIDAL partnership, plus access to podcastsnews and web series.

Plex now has 20 million users, and while it doesn’t detail its subscriber numbers, it has achieved profitability.

That said, the one media organization challenge it hasn’t yet solved is helping users search for, discover and track the shows and movies they want to watch outside of live TV or its ad-supported streams. Plex did once say it’s looking into paid subscriptions further down the road, as it’s a natural next step beyond the ad-supported streaming deals.

Plex says its video-on-demand library will launch later this year.

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Google Search can now help you find your next binge. The company this morning announced a new feature that will make personalized recommendations of what to watch, including both TV shows and movies, and point you to services where the content is available.

The feature is an expansion of Google’s existing efforts in pointing web searchers to informative content about TV shows and films.

Already, a Google search for a TV show or movie title will include a “Knowledge Panel” box at the the top of the search results where you can read the overview, see the ratings and reviews, check out the cast and, as of spring 2017, find services where the show or movie can be streamed or purchased.

The new recommendations feature will instead appear to searchers who don’t have a particular title in mind, but are rather typing in queries like “what to watch” or “good shows to watch,” for example. From here, you can tap a Start button in the “Top picks for you” carousel to rate your favorite TV shows and movies in order to help Google better understand your tastes.


You also can select which subscriptions you have access to, in order to customize your recommendations further. This includes subscription services like Netflix, Hulu, HBO GO and HBO NOW, Prime Video, Showtime, Showtime Anytime, CBS All Access and Starz.

You also can indicate if you have a cable TV or satellite subscription. And it will list shows and movies available for rent, purchase or free streaming from online marketplaces like iTunes, Prime Video, Google Play Movies & TV and Vudu, plus network apps like ABC, Freeform, Lifetime, CBS, Comedy Central, A&E and History.

To get started, you’ll use a Tinder-like swiping mechanism to rate titles. Right swipes indicate a “like” and left swipes indicate a “dislike.” You can “skip” titles you don’t know or have an opinion on.

After giving Google some starter data about your interests, future searches for things to watch will offer recommendations tailored to you.

The company tells TechCrunch this information is only being used for the purpose of recommendations — it’s not being offered to advertisers. Instead, it’s about Google’s larger goal in helping people find the information they need.


The company notes that you can even get specific with your requests, by asking for things like “horror movies from the 80s” or “adventure documentaries about climbing.” (This will help, too, when you can’t remember a movie’s title but do know what it’s about.)

Google’s search results will return a list of suggestions, and when you pick one you want to watch, the service will — as before — let you know where it’s available.

The company already has a good understanding of consumer interest in movies and TV thanks to its data on popular searches. Now it aims to have a good understanding of what individual users may want to watch, as well.

The new recommendations feature is live today on mobile for users in the U.S.

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Deep down, everyone wants to be a hero. Legendary cosplayer Alyson Tabbitha is no different. Except for the fact that being just one hero isn’t enough for her. Sometimes it seems like she wants to embody every single comic book, movie and video game protagonist in existence. At least for a few hours.

Alyson has been cosplaying professionally since 2014. Since then, her amazing costumes have turned many a head and inspired others to take up this difficult art. Not to mention that her success has bred intense but friendly rivalry with other cosplayers.

Keep on scrolling, share your fave Alyson cosplays with your friends, and remember to upvote the ones you love most! When you’re done, check out Bored Panda’s other post about Alyson the cosplayer.


Newt Scamander (Fantastic Beasts)


Nebula (Guardians Of The Galaxy )

A mind-boggling 1 million cosplay fans follow Alyson on Instagram, while another 516,000 Internet users follow her on Facebook. I’m sure that some of us are a tiny bit jealous of all the attention. However, it’s easy to see why Alyson has such massive support — she makes very high quality, detailed costumes that are close to perfection.


Lara Croft (Tomb Raider)


David Bowie

Alyson, who describes herself as “just a girl that likes to play dress up & make things“, enjoys dressing up as women and men alike: from Lara Croft and Queen Amidala to Newt Scamander and Legolas. Her resemblance to these characters is uncanny!




Queen Amidala (Star Wars)

The origins of cosplay can be found way back in history, in the masquerade balls of the 15th century. A century later, they turned into costumed public festivals in Italy. Later on, the 19th century saw the rise in popularity of American costume and British fancy dress parties.




Joker (The Dark Knight)

However, modern cosplay can be traced back to 1908 when Mr. and Mrs. William Fell dressed up as the characters Mr. Skygack and Miss Dillpickles for a masquerade at a skating rink.


Jack Sparrow (Pirates Of The Caribbean)


Elsa (Frozen)

The first people to wear costumes to a convention were science fiction fans, Forrest J. Ackerman and Myrtle R. Douglas: they attended the 1939 1st World Science Fiction Convention in New York dressed in futuristic costumes, including green cape and breeches. Fan costuming caught on since then and the 2nd Worldcon in 1940 had both an unofficial masquerade held in Douglas’ room and an official masquerade as part of the program.


Leeloo (The Fifth Element)


Hela (Thor: Ragnarok)


Sarah (Labyrinth)


Jareth The Goblin King (Labyrinth)


Princess Leia (Star Wars)


Rey (Star Wars)


Wonder Woman


Legolas (Lord Of The Rings)




Arwen (Lord Of The Rings)


Poison Ivy (Batman)


Helena (My Chemical Romance Music Video)

See Also on Bored Panda


Sweeney Todd


Atlanna, Queen Of Atlantis (Aquaman)


Tony Stark (Iron Man)


Arwen (Lord Of The Rings)


David Bowie (“Life On Mars” Music Video)


Casual Ariel (The Little Mermaid)

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(CNN)Here’s a look at the life of comedian, actor, director, producer, playwright and screenwriter Mel Brooks, best known for comedic farces such as “The Producers,” “Blazing Saddles,” “Young Frankenstein” and “Spaceballs.”

Birth place: Brooklyn, New York
Birth name: Melvin James Kaminsky
    Father: Max Kaminsky, a process server
    Mother: Kate (Brookman) Kaminsky
    Marriages: Anne Bancroft (1964-2005, her death); Florence Baum (unavailable publicly-1962, divorced)
    Children: with Anne Bancroft: Max; with Florence Baum: Stefanie, Nicky and Eddie
    Education: AttendedVirginia Military Institute as part of his Army training
    Military: US Army, 1944-1945, Corporal
    Other Facts:
    Brooks adopted the last name, “Brooks” from his mother’s maiden name, “Brookman.”
    His parents were Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe.
    Brooks is one of an elite few known as EGOT winners. They have all won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony award.
    His second wife, actress Anne Bancroft, was almost an EGOT winner herself. She collected Oscar, Emmy and Tony awards before her death from cancer in 2005.
    He has won an Academy Award out of three nominations.
    Has won three Tony Awards out of three nominations.
    Has won four Emmy Awards out of 13 nominations.
    Has won three Grammy Awards and has been nominated 10 times.
    Brooks learned how to play the drums in his youth from famous jazz musician Buddy Rich.
    Brooks makes appearances in his own films as an actor and an occasional voice-over artist. He played character roles in “Blazing Saddles,” “High Anxiety,” “Spaceballs” and “Robin Hood: Men in Tights.”
    1944-1945 – Serves in the US Army as a combat engineer during World War II.
    1949-1958 – Begins his career as a comedy writer in television and theatre, writing for “Broadway Revue,” “Your Show of Shows,” “Caesar’s Hour,” “Sid Caesar Invites You,” along with “All American” and “Shinbone Alley.” During his time with “Your Show of Shows,” he works with Neil Simon and Carl Reiner. Reiner and Brooks share a lifelong friendship and partnership.
    1960 – Brooks and Reiner release the comedy album, “The 2,000-Year-Old Man.” The hit spawns four follow-up albums, an animated TV special and several books.
    1965-1970 – Teams up with writer Buck Henry to create the hit television comedy, “Get Smart.”
    June 4, 1967 – Receives his first Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Variety, for “The Sid Caesar, Imogene Coca, Carl Reiner and Howard Morris Special.”
    November 1968 – “The Producers” is released in theaters, making it the first motion picture Brooks wrote and directed independently.
    April 14, 1969 – Wins an Academy Award for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen, for “The Producers.”
    1974 – Forms the production company, “Brooksfilms.” “Coming Attractions” is the company’s first film, and “Fatso,” “The Elephant Man,” “History of the World: Part I,” “To Be or Not to Be” and “The Fly” follow.
    1997-1999 – Wins three Primetime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series, for “Mad About You.”
    February 24, 1999 – Brooks and Reiner win the Grammy Award for Best Spoken Comedy Album, for “The 2,000 Year Old Man in the Year 2000.”
    June 3, 2001 – Brooks wins three Tony Awards: Best Musical, Best Original Score and Best Book of a Musical, for “The Producers.”
    February 27, 2002 – Receives two Grammy Awards: Best Long Form Music Video category, for “Recording ‘The Producers: A Musical Romp with Mel Brooks'” shared with Susan Froemke and Peter Gelb, and for “The Producers” in the Best Musical Show Album category.
    November 8, 2007 – “Young Frankenstein” premieres on Broadway, making it the second musical adaptation of one of his films.
    December 29, 2009 – Receives the Kennedy Center Honors.
      April 23, 2010 – Receives a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

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      Taron Egerton as Elton John in 'Rocketman'.
      Image: David Appleby / Paramount Pictures

      Bohemian Rhapsody was so 2018. 2019 will be the year of Rocketman.

      The Elton John biopic shared about seven minutes of footage at Paramount’s CinemaCon presentation Thursday, and while this reporter is on the fence about whether or not it looks good, I feel fairly confident saying it’s going to make a ton of money.

      The extended first look follows Reginald Dwight from his very early years as a shy kid with a natural talent for classical piano, to his young adult years as an unstoppable creative force, to a troubled middle age in which he seems to have lost sight of who he really is. (Taron Egerton plays John in adulthood.)

      We get to see him meet songwriter Bernie Taupin (Jamie Bell) and manager John Reid (Richard Madden), change his name to Elton John (according to this movie, he happens upon the surname when he happens to spot a photo of the Beatles), play the Troubadour and Dodger Stadium, and so on. 

      In between, there are what look like full-on musical numbers, like one for “Saturday Night’s Alright,” set at a carnival, and lovely moments of magical realism, like a shot of someone playing piano at the bottom of a very deep pool. The familiar music alone should be enough to get butts in seats.

      These dreamy touches also help set Rocketman apart from Bohemian Rhapsody, which it otherwise seems to follow beat for beat, down to the obligatory scene of a foolish record executive who just can’t seem to understand that what his oddball artist has brought him is actually the next great masterpiece. 

      That the films might share some similarities isn’t terribly surprising, given that Rocketman director Dexter Fletcher also helped steer Bohemian Rhapsody after Bryan Singer’s exit. But it also speaks to how paint-by-numbers Bohemian Rhapsody felt. Hopefully, Rocketman has a little more fun coloring outside the lines.

      The other key draw here is Egerton, who seems to capture John’s crackling energy while layering his performance with doubt, arrogance, and determination. He also does his own singing as John, and in the bits we saw, fared impressively well. Hey, we know John’s already a fan.

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      How can a movie capture an experience that everyone in the world has heard about, but only an extremely privileged few will ever get to have firsthand? 

      Well, for starters, it’s got to have the right music.

      That’s the task composer Justin Hurwitz faced when he signed up for First Man, director Damien Chazelle’s telling of Neil Armstrong’s journey to the moon. But while reading Josh Singer’s script, Hurwitz was most struck by how alienating the trip must have been for Armstrong.

      “I really responded to this idea in the script that after Neil went to the moon, he would be very alone for the rest of his life, a stranger from the rest of humanity,” he told Mashable in an email, “because nobody else has had the experience he had, and seen the things he has seen.”

      First Man wasn’t entirely unfamiliar territory for Hurwitz. He’d worked with Chazelle before on three other movies, including the musical smash hit La La Land. But both knew they’d have to find “a new kind of flavor” for this story. To that end, they experimented with electronic instruments – like the theremin, stereotypically associated with the sci-fi genre.

      “I love that the theremin is kind of an intersection between technology and humanity,” said Hurwitz. “It is obviously a piece of tech, and there’s a real electronic quality to the way that it sounds, but because of the way that you play it with your body, it’s so expressive and can really become an extension of how you’re feeling.” 

      “Plus,” he added, “We found that it could take on a real wailing or crying quality.”

      It’s that quality that comes through in the track above, which plays in the movie as Neil leaves home for his trip to the moon. In a voiceover, a NASA official reads the statement they’ve prepared in case Neil and his crew never return. 

      It’s a powerful, poignant moment, even if, in 2018, we already know darn well how his journey ends. And for Hurwitz, the scene presented an unexpected challenge. 

      He and Chazelle had worked out the main themes of the movie a year earlier, and planned to score the entire film with variations on those melodies. When Chazelle and editor Tom Cross showed Hurwitz this sequence, however, it was with instructions to figure out something “totally new.”

      “[Chazelle] was looking for something more dramatic and tragic than any of the themes we already had, and asked for it to be ‘operatic’ in how it would grow and grow throughout the sequence, exploding into a huge brass chord as we cut to the shot of the Saturn rocket sitting on the launchpad,” said Hurwitz.

      The resulting track, “Contingency Plan,” starts out small and ends up epic. Hurwitz presents an intimate plea and a grand declaration, a celebration of big ambitions and a warning of same. It’s probably nothing like what Armstrong actually heard in the hours leading up to the landing. But it’s just the right music to make us feel, just for a moment, like we’re right there with this great and lonely man.

      The score to First Man will be released with the film’s theatrical release on Friday, Oct. 12.

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      Elton John's early years are captured in 'Rocketman'.
      Image: paramount pictures

      Music legend Elton John has done his fair share of movie appearances, and now he’s set to be portrayed in the forthcoming biographical musical, Rocketman.

      Playing the iconic musician is Welsh actor Taron Egerton, who made his mark in 2014’s Kingsman: The Secret Service, and its 2017 sequel, and who is also set to appear in the bombastic new Robin Hood movie.

      The first image from Rocketman has just been released, which captures John in the midst of his career breakthrough. 

      Speaking to Collider earlier this year, Egerton revealed it won’t your regular biographical film.

      “Everyone thinks it’s a bio-pic. It isn’t. It’s a fantasy musical so it’s actually his songs used to express important beats in his life at emotional moments. He’s not the only character that sings. It’s going to be fun,” he said.

      Egerton is also a singer, but has been taking lessons to at least help him “create some semblance of a performance that is at least reminiscent of him.”

      Also set to appear in the film is Fantastic Four’s Jamie Bell, Game of Thrones’ Richard Madden, Gemma Jones from Bridget Jones’s Diary, and Black Mirror’s Bryce Dallas Howard.

      Rocketman is set to hit cinemas in May 2019.

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      We know the feeling: Youre tired after work and all you want to do is relax and watch a good movie on Netflix. But you have no idea where to start or even what youre in the mood for. Thats why weve curated guides for the best movies on Netflix for nearly every genre we could think of: horror, comedy, indie flicks, rom-coms, serial killers, anime, kids movies, nature documentaries, movies based on true stories, standup specials, TV shows, thrillers, 4k movies and TV shows,

      Weve combined the blurbs from some of those lists and written quite a few more to create this ultimate guide to what to watch on Netflix. Well be updating this list monthly, so you can rest assured that if you see something you like here, you can quickly add it to your queue.

      The 101 best movies on Netflix


      Theres not a lot to say about Boyhood that hasnt already been said. Its a masterpiece, an experience unlike any other, and one of the best movies of the century so far. Champion of the understated, director Richard Linklater casually follows the life of Mason (Ellar Coltrane) from childhood to college, checking in with his actors as they aged over a 12-year shooting process. In the Linklater way, eschewing grand, life-changing moments in favor of the everyday business of just living, the film becomes extraordinary in its ordinariness. This is one persons story, and the beauty in it is that the narrative never focuses on anything other than that person becoming himselfwhich is, of course, both one of the most ordinary and the most beautiful things anyone can ever achieve. To say that Boyhood works only as an experiment would be shortsighted. It works as a complete and profound work of art on its own, too. Chris Ostendorf

      2)Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

      This film will resonate with anyone whos wished they could just erase an ex from their memory, which sort of erases the romantic comedy part of it. Still, director Michel Gondrys 2004 film is affecting more than a decade later for its portrayal of the gray depths of a breakup and balances the more depressing moments with surreal dream sequences and visually stunning flashes that show the beginnings of a relationship. Audra Schroeder

      3)E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

      Deciding whether to watch E.T. or not is one of the easier Netflix choices you can make. You see it and you click play, right? For most adults that reaction is automatic, and now is as good a time as any to bring the next generation into the fold. Steven Spielbergs classic holds up astonishingly well, and the idea of bonding with a stranger and helping others is always timely. E.T. is the kind of movie that will endure for as long as watching movies is a thing, and almost 40 years after its release, the joy you get in sharing the movie with the next generation nearly exceeds the pleasure you get from watching it. Almost. -Eddie Strait

      4)Chasing Amy

      Chasing Amy is so much better than every other movie Kevin Smith has ever made that it must have been the result of accidentally getting hit by lightning. A never-better Ben Affleck (yes, even better than in Gone Girl) plays Holden, a comic book artist who develops an attraction to fellow illustrator Amy (Joey Lauren Adams). Theres just one little problem. Shes a lesbian.

      Smiths film has a lot on its mindfrom the blurred boundaries between friendships to the mutability of sexualitybut at its core it acknowledges a simple truth: Love is hell. Salons Charles Taylor wrote that it depicts romance as a kind of emotional anarchyone that nearly ends in an ill-advised threesome between Amy, Holden, and Banky (Jason Lee), who is struggling to come to terms with his sexuality. But its not without its hard-earned rewards. The films bittersweet finale is one of the most powerful and honest Ive ever seen on film. Nico Lang

      5)Blazing Saddles

      Its often said that Mel Brooks searing 1974 satire couldnt get made today. But would you really want it to be? Part of the charm of Blazing Saddles is that it feels at once dated and timeless. Its both a product of 1974 and an enduring send-up of the way race is portrayed in cinema. With the help of talent including stars Gene Wilder and Cleavon Little, writer Richard Pryor, and many, many more, Mel Brooks crafted his masterpiece with this bawdy, ludicrous, razor-sharp critique of the American western. C.O.

      6)Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

      Between fan theories, Super Bowl commercials, and a 30th anniversary party courtesy of the city of Chicago, in over three decades Ferris Bueller has yet to take a day off from being a pop culture fixation. Ferriss pure, joyous narcissism contrasted with Camerons hangdog self-consciousness creates a cinematic equilibrium that is boundlessly relatable. For most of us, Ferris is who wed like to be but Cameron is who we are. It doesnt matter whether you identify with Ferris, Cameron, or even Jeanie, Ferris Buellers Day Off continues to be John Hughes most accessible masterpiece.Michelle Jaworksi

      7)Jurassic Park

      Jurassic Park may not be Spielberg’s best film, but is it possibly his most Spielberg film? One could look at offerings like Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jaws (which just left Netflix,) or E.T. (still available for the moment,) as other potential encapsulations of what he does best, but I would argue that Jurassic Park is where he reached the zenith of populist craftsmanship hes known and loved for. No one else could make a giant blockbuster about dinosaurs both so thrilling and so human (a fact made sadly evident by 2015s disappointing Jurassic World). As soon as that John Williams score swells and you get the first glimpse of that Brachiosaurus, youll remember all over again why Spielberg remains Americas favorite director. C.O.

      8)The Graduate

      Aside from its propulsion of the MILF concept into the modern zeitgeist, The Graduate sports one of cinema’s greatest tragic romances. In its third act, The Graduate really throws you for a loop: The last leg of the film is a testament to the Grand Gesture, as Dustin Hoffman drives his red sports coupe across the country to stop the wedding of his former lover’s daughter, and to proclaim his love to her. But its not that simple, either. Jam Kotenko

      9)Good Will Hunting

      Its not your fault. Ouch, right? Even if youre tired of looking at the smug face of Matt Damons Will Hunting, even if the obnoxious mass of Boston accents has started to get to you, even if the movies general earnestness drives you crazy, by the time Good Will Hunting arrives at that one scene, even the hardest and most cynical hearts will also start to melt. Among Good Will Huntings considerable powers are Gus Van Sants deft but subtle direction and Matt Damon and Ben Afflecks Oscar-winning script. But its Robin Williams crushing performance, for which he also received the Academy award, that makes the movie worth revisiting. The late Williams showed he could tone his more over-the-top antics way down in this, his most acclaimed role. The result is breathtaking and the one element of the movie most likely to make you shed a tear or two (or many.) C.O.

      10)The Shining

      Stephen King’s award-winning novel differs quite a bit from Stanley Kubrick’s vision of it in film, but both are horror tales that will stick with you long after they’re over. Kubrick’s take is considered a visionary masterpiece to this day, loaded with incredible performances. A young Jack Nicholson is a standout as Jack Torrance, an alcoholic writer fighting for sanity in a deserted hotel with his family in the dead of winter. Colette Bennett


      Spotlight is a drama of the old-school model, bringing into comparison gems such as All the Presidents Men. It follows the Boston Globe‘s Spotlight team as it exposes the numerous cases of child abuse and molestation by clergymen covered up by the Catholic church in Boston. The Boston Globe went on to win a Pulitzer Prize for their efforts, and the scandal ran so deep that the Archbishop of Boston was forced to step down. If you care about journalism, it’s a must-watch. Clara Wang

      12)Sunset Boulevard

      Sunset Boulevard is both a swan song to the age of silent films and a love story. Silent film star Norma (Gloria Swanson) is wasting away in the era of talkies. She spends her days screening her old movies and being waited on by her former husband Max Von Mayerling (Erich von Stronheim), who was once the greatest silent film director of his time and is now just Norma’s butler. When Joe, a failed screenwriter (William Holden) half her age stumbles into Norma’s life, she begins to fall in love and offers him a job. The sordid sequence of events that follow turn Sunset Boulevard into a fascinating and bleak tale of lost stardom and the perils of unconditional love. Amrita Khalid

      13)Boogie Nights

      Several Paul Thomas Anderson films from this century (There Will Be Blood, The Master) are so routinely referred to as masterpieces that one can almost forget he had a career before the year 2000. But not only was Anderson as a much a product of the 90s indie explosion as fellow auteurs like Quentin Tarantino and Wes Anderson, he debatably made the best film out of all of them with 1997s Boogie Nights.

      Only his second film, Boogie Nights is a sprawling, multifaceted depiction of the porn industry in the late 70s and early 80s. The rise and fall (and sort of rise?) of Dirk Diggler proved to be a coming-out moment for star Mark Wahlberg too, not to mention a brief redemption for Oscar-nominated supporting actor Burt Reynolds, working alongside many of Andersons usual players, who all give career highlight performances. The music, the setting, the acting, the story, Boogie Nights is an American story unlike any other. Saying its that movie about porn isnt entirely inaccurate, but it doesnt do the film justice either. C.O.

      14)Finding Dory

      If Pixar has lost a little bit of speed on its fastball post-Toy Story 3, Finding Dory is a wily veteran learning how to get by with the offspeed stuff. Dory (voiced by an ever-enthusiastic Ellen Degeneres) goes on her own adventure after getting lost. Dory leans on humor more than its predecessor, aided by great vocal performances from Ed ONeill, Idris Elba, Kaitlin Olson, and a slew of stars that would make Dreamworks envious. But it doesn’t lack for emotion either, as we expect from the best of Pixar. At its heart, Dory is a story about coping mental illness, and it does right by the material. E.S.


      Jean-Pierre Jeunet 2001 film made Audrey Tautou a star, and its easy to see why. As the title character, she finds joy in bringing joy to others, quietly pulling strings around Paris to brighten the lives of strangers. Shes not a matchmaker; Amlies goal is something bigger. But then she stumbles upon Nino, a man with a similar goal. A.S.

      16)Blue Is the Warmest Color

      Steeped in controversy upon its release (and for good reason,) Blue Is the Warmest Color is nevertheless a nearly unparalleled achievement in 21st-century filmmaking. Discussions about male gaze and directorial ethics are sure to follow many people’s viewing, but we also dont get many epic, three-hour lesbian love stories. There are elements of Blue Is the Warmest Color that still feel essential, if for no other reason than that we need more of what the film gets right, even while needing less of what it gets wrong. And of course, there are the performances from lead actresses La Seydoux and Adle Exarchopoulos, who rightfully became the first actors ever to be awarded the Palme dOr when the film premiered at Cannes. Playing the two halves of young couple Emma and Adle, Blue Is the Warmest Colors leading ladies are both so good, its not just that they have created an indelible cinematic love storyits as if theyve reinvented the cinematic love story itself. C.O.

      17)Animal House

      Is its depiction of frat life less endearing in 2017? Yup. Have a million John Belushi posters and shirts diminished the movies legacy? Definitely. Is Animal House, in general, a bit of a relic of its time? Probably. But the biggest question yet: Is the film still funny, to which the answer remains a resounding yes. From John Landis, Harold Ramis, and the other early geniuses of the National Lampoon, this 1978 send-up of college culture set the template for a thousand imitators to follow. Most of them arent nearly as good. This is the type of movie so specifically famous, youll recognize certain scenes (To-ga! To-ga!) even if youve never seen in all the way through. C.O.

      18)Beasts of No Nation

      Netflixs first foray into prestige cinema, at least in terms of narrative filmmaking, was this child soldier drama from 2015. Upon its release, Beasts of No Nation immediately declared that in addition to giving you daily doses of 90s nostalgia, the streaming giant was committed to socially engaged stories too. Directed by True Detectives Cary Joji Fukunaga and starring Idris Elba in what shouldve been an Oscar-nominated performance, this is an intense watch but also a rewarding one. If nothing else, itll make you aware of how few depictions of Africa we really see onscreen, and how much that needs to be corrected. C.O.


      Nominated for Best Picture and co-written by Mad Maxs George Miller (who went on to direct the movies sequel, Babe: Pig in the City,) people forget too often that Babe is more than the cute pig movie. Its also a poignant, deeply moving, and occasionally harrowing story about finding compassion in unexpected places and the unlikely triumph of a group of underdogs (and one under-pig.) Even today, its still hard not to tear up when Farmer Hoggett tells Babe, Thatll do, pig. Thatll do. C.O.

      20)Moonrise Kingdom

      If youve ever seen a Wes Anderson movie before, you know what to expect here. Its quirky, its got snappy dialog, the images are rendered with painterly precision. But what separates Moonrise Kingdom from his other work is its depiction of childhood. Leads Sam and Suzy are not precocious or pandering, and their relationship is nuanced and honest, despite the usual Andersony quirks. Just as he humanized high schoolers in Rushmore, Anderson again proves he has more respect for young people than most Hollywood filmmakers here. -C.O.

      21)No Country For Old Men

      We meet killer Anton Chigurh within the first two minutes of No Country For Old Men, the Coen brothers adaptation of Cormac McCarthys 2005 novel. The first murder we witness sets off a domino effect across West Texas, as dirty money, small-town law enforcement, and a dead-eyed killer engage in a deadly dance. -A.S.

      22)Once Upon a Time in the West

      Sometimes, if you want an artistic, cinematic interpretation of how the West was won, you need to watch a movie that was shot in Spain by an Italian director. That director, of course, is the famous Sergio Leone. He did his research, extensively, on the railroad game during the era of the Wild West for Once Upon a Time (and also on the Civil War for the film proceeding it, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly), which means that, aside from the dramatic gun duels (and the dramatic, well everything), the film doubles as both a beautiful slice of Americana art and a history lesson. Yes, the film is an Italian production, but it nails the soul and legend of the Western frontier better than any American production ever has. -J.K.

      23) Pulp Fiction

      Quentin Tarantinos 1994 film leaves you with more questions than answers, but it defined an era through pop-culture pastiche. Samuel L. Jackson, John Travolta, Bruce Willis, and Uma Thurman all have star turns in the film, which is full of F-bombs and imminently quotable lines. A.S.

      24)Mulholland Drive

      David Lynchs 2001 film is about Hollywood dreams, but it also exists in its own dream space, bringing us under covers and through doors into an alternate reality. Mulholland Drive was supposed to be a continuation of Twin Peaks, and it took a long road to becoming a feature. But the hallmarks of the series are there: the blonde (Naomi Watts) and brunette Rita (Laura Harring) dynamic, ominous figures, and subconscious imagery. Billy Ray Cyrus makes a cameo, and it features a scene that will make you never want to go near a dumpster again. A.S.

      25)Forrest Gump

      The quotable lines, the history, the Tom Hanks of it all, Forrest Gump gets pretty sentimental. The movie gets pretty dark in some moments too, but was there ever a film so emotionally manipulative? Ultimately, youre either the kind of person that gives into Gumps sentimentality wholesale, or youre the kind who prefers to avoid it altogether. And if you are in the former category, you have to admit that there are few films that provide such an effective mix of tragic, comic, joyful, inspirational, and yes, sad moments as Forrest Gump. When a movie can manipulate your emotions this effectively, does it matter if you realize theyre being manipulated? I think not. C.O.

      26)Hot Fuzz

      Edgar Wright fans might debate which entry in the Cornetto trilogy was his best. The fan favorite remains the slacker zombie spoof Shaun of the Dead, but I vastly prefer Hot Fuzz, Wrights second entry in the saga starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. A deft send-up of Michael Bay movies and buddy-cop flicks, Hot Fuzz is at its best when it gets downright weird in its inspired third act. The British comedianswho, this time around, play mismatched police officersgo Rambo on a stuffy British village that may or may not be a front for a cult. N.L.

      27)The Road

      This is a bleak, devastating film, with no real sweet spot. If that appeals to you, then The Roadadapted from Cormac McCarthys novel of the same nameis a solid look at humanity in upheaval. Viggo Mortensen and Kodi Smit-McPhee play a father and son traversing a terrifying, no-rules dystopia after an unnamed event has devastated the country. Director John Hillcoat set the tone with 2005s The Proposition. –A.S.


      James Camerons 1997 epic, which fully lives up to its name, is about half typical Cameron action thriller, and half melodrama thats so corny, Douglas Sirk himself would think twice before touching it. Each part is equally effective. As young Kate and Leo fall in love only to have it float away (pun intended) as quickly as it came, all set to the sounds of James Horner and Cline Dion. Youll remember when you first fell in love with Titanic, too. Of course, it might not be as grand watching it from your computer screen, but its still just as sad. C.O.


      Mel Gibsons flowing locks alone are enough reason to watch this war epic that scooped Gibson five Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director. Loosely based on real-life Scottish warrior William Wallace, Braveheart tells the story of Wallace rallying the Scottish in an insurrection against the British. He ends up dying on the rack in one of the most famous death scenes in cinema (and in history). Clara Wang

      30)The Jungle Book

      As a director, Jon Favreau specializes in making broadly appealing movies. Ever since Elf he’s primarily made blockbusters, both original (Cowboys & Aliens) and based on someone else’s IP (Iron Man). Working in the later category, his live-action retelling proved to be much more than a cash grab. The visual effects are incredible, and it’s worth seeing the movie just to soak in the stunning imagery. Add in some noteworthy voice work (Idris Elba stands out in a sea of great vocal performances) and a strong debut for child actor Neel Sethi as Mowgli, and the result is one of 2016 most successful crowd-pleasers. -E.S.


      Metropolis, a silent German film, is essential viewing for science-fiction fans. The futuristic utopia that Freder, the son of the citys master, lives in is heavenly until he learns about the workers who operate the machines vital to the citys existence and strives to help them. -M.J.


      Jake Gyllenhaal might not be the best living actor, but he is certainly the hardest working. Since 2011s Source Code, it would be difficult to find someone with a more diverse array of challenging rolesfrom the explosive boxing drama Southpaw (for which Gyllenhaal famously hulked up) to more sinuous work in Prisoners and Nightcrawler. In the latter, the 35-year-old actor particularly gets under the skin as Louis Bloom, a self-taught cameraman determined to make it in the news entertainment business. Louis gets a job working as a stringer for a producer, Nina (Rene Russo), working the graveyard shift of the lowest-rated network in Los Angeles. Bloom is willing to do anything to get the story, and desperate for ratings, Nina doesnt realize the monster shes creating to get it. Directed by Dan Gilroy (The Bourne Legacy), Nightcrawler is a satire of our news media culture so spot-on you may need to shower after. -N.L.

      33)Sing Street

      Sing Street is simply a lovely movie. From Once director John Carney, this story of a teenager who starts a band to impress the girl whos too cool for him is archetypal in premise but sublime in execution. Music and relationships are center stage in all of Carneys films, and Sing Street is no exception. Every one of the original songs is great, but the sequence that features Drive It Like You Stole It was one of the best scenes in any movie from the past year. No disrespect to La La Land, but Sing Street should have easily taken one of its slots in the original song category. All the performances are great too, but Jack Reynor as our her Conors stoner brother Brendan is is particularly brimming with charm. C.O.

      34)Exit Through the Gift Shop

      Is it an elaborate prank or a piece of high-performance art? Is it an inviting work of genius, or is it subtly poking fun at everyone who views it? These questions apply to both Exit Through the Gift Shop as a work of art and to the art world the film depicts. Directed by the ever-enigmatic Banksy, this documentary begins as a co-exploration of the street art movement, and the French shopkeeper who sought to capture it, Thierry Guetta (a.k.a. Mr. Brainwash). But when Banksy decides halfway through the movie that Thierry might not be, so to speak, the ideal candidate to make the definitive movie on this movement, Exit Through the Gift Shops narrative takes an unexpected turn. The film eventually becomes a meditation on the idea of authenticity in an art culture that is increasingly commercialized. If that sounds too esoteric for you, dont worry, Exit Through the Gift Shop is also riotously funny and at times utterly unbelievable. C.O.


      Best known for his role as Dr. John Hammond in the Jurassic Park franchise, Richard Attenborough was also a notable director of biopics. His most famous film is probably the 1982 epic, Gandhi (for which he won a Best Director Oscar), but film nerds may also be interested in checking out 1992s Chaplin. Although Attenboroughs portrait is hagiographic in a way his real life subject didnt deserve, the movie is still an interesting watch for anyone whos ever been curious about the titular silent film star.

      Above all else, though, the main reason to check out Chaplin is Robert Downey Jr. in the lead role. For anyone whos become unable to see Downey as anything other than Iron Man, Chaplin is a reminder of the considerable range possessed by this unique performer. Like the man hes playing in Chaplin, Downey is a one-of-a-kind talent, and Attenboroughs film, which he received an Oscar nomination for, is an early indication of the superstar Downey was waiting to become. C.O.

      36)Frances Ha

      Noah Baumbach is having an incredibly prolific late careerchurning out Greenberg, The Squid and the Whale, Mistress America, Margot at the Wedding, and While Were Young in an amazing decade-long stretch. During that span, he also made Frances Ha, a riff on Annie Hall as seen through the lens of Godard, Truffaut, and the masters of the French New Wave. Instead of watching a couple slowly drift apart, Baumbach tracks the dissolution of a best friendship between Frances (Greta Gerwig, in her star-making role) and Sophie (Mickey Sumner). Its not only a lovely Woody Allen homage but one of cinemas best portraits of millennial disaffection to date. N.L.


      Christopher Nolans crafty 2000 thriller is an early indication of future brilliance. Its also refreshingly small compared to the blockbusters he would go on to make later in his career. Told backwards, Memento stars Guy Pearce as Leonard, a man with anterograde amnesia, a condition that erases short-term memory. Upon first viewing, the structure and the twist ending are enough to blow you away. But Memento is worth coming back to for its performances and philosophical themes. If you cant remember the things you do, how do you know who you really are? C.O.

      38)The Babadook

      In Jennifer Kents 2014 film, the mother is supposed to be the protector, but she might be the monster, too. This tangled duality pushes The Babadook, a film that takes the idea of a bogeyman and draws a thick black line to the depths of our subconscious. Essie Davis is wonderful as Amelia, a single mother whos slogging through life with her troubled, high-strung son. Their relationship starts to shift after a creature in a childrens pop-up book starts appearing outside the pages and becomes a terrifying metaphor for grief and depression. It joins a handful of recent horror films (The Witch, It Follows, Ex Machina) in which women arent just prey or victims. -A.S.

      39)10 Things I Hate About You

      Ah, this 1999 film gave us the perfect combination of Shakespearean angst and late 90s pop. Julia Stiles Kat became a style and attitude template for many disaffected teens, and Heath Ledgers Patrick offered a more complex look at the bad boy. Supporting work from Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Larry Miller, and Allison Janney anchored this adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew. A.S.

      40)Magic Mike

      When this Steven Soderbergh film debuted in 2012, who knew it would reach midnight-movie levels of (feminist) fandom? Channing Tatum drew from real-life experience to shape the titular stripper, and the film explores sexuality, identity, and commerce from a different angle. Plus: abs! A.S.

      41)The Day the Earth Stood Still

      Its tough to avoid the parallels this cold war era sci-fi pic has to the world today,. Originally released in 1951 The Day the Earth Stood Still tells the story of an alien sent to our world to investigate humans and hopefully prompt us into laying down our arms in service of the common goodor else. The premise is unsubtle, simple even. But the message, that total destruction of our enemies also means total destruction of ourselves, never stops being relevant. Like all great science fiction, The Day the Earth Stood Still holds up a mirror, and it finds us wanting. C.O.

      42)Short Term 12

      As Grace (Brie Larson), a counselor at a group home for teens, says early on in Short Term 12: You have to be an asshole before you can be their friend. The film spends much of its time exploring the inner lives of these kids as well as the counselors. The Newsrooms John Gallagher Jr. plays Graces boyfriend and co-worker, and their relationship provides some emotional resonance. Keith Stanfield (Atlanta) is a standout as Marcus, a young man about to turn 18 and leave the home. All these lives collide, and unexpected friendships form from shared pain. A.S.


      A lot has changed in the almost 10 years since Superbad first entered the pantheon of great teen comedies. Some of the more overt bro humor might not play as well today, but the movie doesnt get enough credit for how sweet it is t0o. Seth Rogen and Evan Goldbergs debut as Hollywood power writers is essentially a meditation on their own friendship. Obnoxious and hilarious, Superbad ultimately works because Jonah Hill and Michael Ceras portrayals of the fictionalized Seth and Evan feel rooted in a very real bond. Plus, you know, McLovin. C.O.

      44)Silver Streak

      After Gene Wilders death in 2016, his roles in Young Frankenstein and Willy Wonka were rightfully elevated in pieces about this life and work. But this 1976 action-comedy with Richard Pryor is worth a visit. Some of the racial themes and language will seem very outdated now, the physical comedy is absurd, and the plot kind of disappears, but the chemistry between Pryor and Wilder is what youre really there for. A.S.

      45)Fruitvale Station

      Given the country we live in, any drama about the shooting of an unarmed black man by a law enforcement officers is sure to stir up emotions. This one, based on the 2008 killing of Bay Area citizen Oscar Grant, is no different from any otherexcept it is. Like all stories of police violence against the black community, Fruitvale Stations details are unique while also fitting into a larger pattern. What makes the film work is that director Ryan Coogler (who was just 26 when Fruitvale Station debuted at Sundance) chooses to focus on the last few hours of Oscar Grants life, rather than just the moments surrounding his death. In that way, the movie becomes equal parts celebration and indictment. Fruitvale Station was a monumental debut on Cooglers part, as well as aturning point for star Michael B. Jordan (who had previously appeared on such TV shows as The Wire, Friday Night Lights, and Parenthood). Fruitvale Station is still a devastating breakout. C.O.


      47)To Catch a Thief

      Hitchcock’s compelling tale of high-profile robberies among wealthy Americans in the French Riviera is the director at its best. To Catch a Thief star screen legends Cary Grant and Grace Kelly playing opposite each otheranother reason this absorbing heist movie shouldn’t be missed. Grant plays a reformed jewel thief who must prove his innocence after a series of cat burglaries occur on the French Riviera. Kelly plays half of a high-rolling mother-daughter duo vacationing in the Riviera. Once the two decide to join forces, it’s nearly impossible to tear your eyes off the screen. A.K.

      48)Honey, I Shrunk the Kids

      It truly is a shame that Rick Moranis stepped away from acting. His screen presence is so warm and welcoming that it’s hard to think of an actor better suited for family films. Luckily, we have a solid stable of Moranis’ work to share with the next generation. Honey, I Shrunk the Kids has such a silly premise that it’s nearly impervious to aging (more so than the effects at least). Like it’s leading man, it’s a film that endears itself to the audience. This one isn’t in regular rotation anywhere, so it’s a good Netflix watch to take advantage of while you still can. Eddit Strait

      49)Jiro Dreams of Sushi

      Jiro Dreams of Sushi is the kind of documentary that was meant to be on Netflix. Though it was well-received upon theatrical release, it often takes the accessibility of streaming services for stories with such specified subject matter to reach a wider audience. Sushi master Jiro and his relationship with son Yoshikazu (parodied on IFCs Documentary Now) make for a fascinating portrait of the pursuit to do one thing really well. Caution to sushi fans, though: Your mouth will be watering through much of the 1:20 runtime. -C.O.

      50)Life Itself

      Steve James is debatably the most important documentary filmmaker of the last quarter century, with acclaimed works like Hoop Dreams, Stevie, and The Interrupters under his belt to show for it. But while all his films are personal in nature, James 2014 portrait of fellow Chicagoan Roger Ebert feels especially close to home. Ebert had championed his work for years by the time James decided to do a film on Americas most famous film critic. But the result is no mere hagiography, pulling pieces from Eberts own memoir to create a warts-and-all portrait that is made all the more affecting by scenes in which James visits him during the last few months of his life. The overall achievement proves to be both a moving tribute to a unique American voice and a touching meditation on mortality itself. C.O.


      Hush is an hourlong cuticle-ripper. The 2016 film centers on Maddie (Kate Siegel, who co-wrote the screenplay), a deaf and mute author who lives in a secluded cabin in the woods. And theres a killer on the loose, wearing a creepy white mask. This premise might sound awfully well-tread, but Hush upends the typical home-invasion thriller by letting us see the threat (The Newsrooms John Gallagher Jr.) unmasked, forcing the tension to build as Maddie finds different ways to thwart his murderous advances. By immersing us in Maddies silent world, the tension is even more palpable, and the fact that shes a writer of fiction allows the film to expand in some inventive directions, even as her fate remains unsure. A.S.

      52)Little Men

      Little Men is the third film in director Ira Sachs loose trilogy examining modern urban life. Though his previous two efforts (Keep the Lights On and Love Is Strange) both revolved around gay couples, albeit in very different circumstances, Little Men centers around the friendship of two young teenage boys and how a squabble between their parents threatens to pull them apart. It may not feel quite as of the moment as Sachs last few movies, but Little Men still has a lot to say about contemporary New York, specifically how the citys changing real estate market is pushing people out left and right. Yet Little Mens more important truths are timeless: friendship is hard but worth it, people come in and out of your life, and you may change for the better even if you dont get what you really want. C.O.

      53)Queen of Earth

      Alex Ross Perry does not make movies about people you would like to spend time with. His breakout feature, Read more:

      The Warp Zone made a recap of one of the best movie trilogies there are. And even though there are as much recaps about it as there are worse trilogies, this rap version performed by Ryan Tellez is truly unique.

      “Great Scott! It’s a recap rap of the entire Back to the Future Trilogy!”

      via: geeksaresexy

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