With the FMR final fast approaching, a day out on the town likely isn’t a part of your weekend plans. That doesn’t mean that you can’t take a study break. Here are our thoughts on some movies that you can take in without leaving your dorm room or apartment; all of the following are currently available on Netflix. Secondary research was conducted on imdb.com.
Devil (2010, PG-13, 80 Minutes)
A group of strangers are stranded in an elevator, and they soon find themselves in mortal peril; as it turns out, their predicament is the handiwork of none other than the devil itself. A solid, suspenseful, horror film that makes the most of a limited setting, Devil is one of M. Knight Shyamalan’s better films (he is credited as the film’s story writer, but John Erick Dowdle directed). If nothing else, take a few minutes to watch one of the more memorable opening sequences of the past few years, a vertigo-inducing shot of the Philadelphia skyline flipped upside-down. Recommended. Contains violence and some gore.
The Emperor’s New Groove (2000, G, 78 Minutes)
Everything’s groovy for the spoiled, hard-hearted Emperor Kuzco (David Spade), until a botched assassination plot concocted by his devious adviser Yzma (Eartha Kitt) and her less than devious henchman Kronk (Patrick Warburton) turns him into a llama. Kuzco proceeds to team up with kindly peasant Pacha (John Goodman), and sets out to regain his human form. First and foremost a kid’s cartoon, this film will be a trip down memory lane for those who enjoyed this movie as children, but its witty, ludicrous sense of humor should appeal to first-time viewers as well. Recommended.
The Usual Suspects (1995, R, 106 Minutes)
A drug heist has gone wrong, and dozens are dead. Verbal Kint (Kevin Spacey), a small-time crook and the only surviving member of the crew responsible, recounts what happened to the police in exchange for immunity. A well-written whodunit that, unfortunately, loses much of its punch if you’ve already been told the answer. Contains violence, gore, and strong language.
World War Z (2013, PG-13, 116 Minutes)
Millions of zombies try to turn UN special investigator Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) into yet another zombie, who does his best not to get zombified. Rinse, lather, repeat. The movie starts off strong with a genuinely scary zombie attack (set in Philadelphia, no less), but soon gets repetitive. The plot is too silly to be taken seriously, yet not quite silly enough to be enjoyed ironically. Contains violence and gore.
Zoolander (2001, PG-13, 89 Minutes)
Superstar model Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) has hit a rough patch; his signature look has gone stale, a newer, hipper model is stealing his thunder, and his roommates have just died after a gasoline stop gone horribly wrong. To add to Derek’s worries, a corrupt fashion mogul (Will Ferrell) is trying to brainwash him into assassinating the Prime Minister of Malaysia. Can Zoolander team up with rival model Hansel (Owen Wilson) to save the day, and can he revive his career in the process? Fairly typical of the absurdist brand of humor one expects from Stiller, Ferrell and company, Zoolander will appeal to fans of the genre. Contains drug use, strong language, and sexual situations.