Thursday, December 31, 2015

3 of 2015's most underrated movies

With 2015 coming to a close, I thought of a few movies I saw this year that were drastically underrated. Here are my picks for 3 of 2015's most underrated movies:

1. The Age of Adaline: Blake Lively stars as Adaline Bowman, a woman who, after a chance accident, became immune to the effects of time. In other words, she does not age. After a few run-ins with the law, she realizes she has to live a quiet existence, changing her identity every decade. She soon meets Ellis Jones (Michael Huisman, TV's Orphan Black) who won't let her go without a fight. Adaline gives in and decides to let herself fall for him, only to discover she knows his father (Harrison Ford). The movie had an absolutely lovely magical feel with romantic undertones. The storyline and performances were definitely superbe, but The Age of Adaline only received mixed reviews with critics.

2. Ricki and the Flash: Meryl Streep stars as Ricki Rendazzo, a woman who left her husband and kids to chase her dream of becoming a famous rock star. That didn't exactly work out; she now works in a grocery store and performs with her band, The Flash, in a bar most nights. But Ricki can't escape the fact that she once had a family: her daughter Julie (Mamie Gummer, also Streep's real-life daughter) has just been abandoned by her husband and her ex-husband Pete (Kevin Kline) asks Ricki to come to Indianapolis to help her recover. Time doesn't heal all things, especially when Ricki's two sons, Josh (Sebastian Stan) and Adam (Nick Westrate), are hesitant to see her and accept her into their grown-up lives. Rick Springfield co-stars as Ricki's singing partner and on-again-off-again boyfriend, Greg. The movie was visually stunning with both great performances (who knew Meryl Streep had such a killer voice?!) as well as a fairly descent story crafted by Diablo Cody (Juno). But I believe the movie was so good because it relies on how the love a family shares never truly dies despite everything, and anyone who has ever been apart of a dysfunctional family will appreciate it. Ricki and the Flash also only received mixed reviews with the pace of the storyline being criticized, but Streep's performance received praise.

3. Love the Coopers: Love the Coopers features an ensemble cast led by Diane Keaton and John Goodman, an older married couple with grown children and grandchildren. While the movie brings to mind Keaton's previous Christmas family comedy The Family Stone (2005), Love the Coopers manages to portray an accurate portrait of a dysfunctional family in present day. The script definitely makes use of its all-star cast, including Olivia Wilde, Amanda Seyfried, Alan Arkin, Ed Helms and Jake Lacy. Unfortunately, it received negative reviews from critics, despite being a quite adorable warm-hug of a movie that makes you feel warm all over on a cold winter night.

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