Roeper’s Under the Radar Picks
Time now for my list of the 5 Best Films Almost Nobody Saw. I’m not ranking them in any particular order BECAUSE YOU NEED TO SEE ALL OF THEM!
Jack Black and Shirley MacLaine are the most unlikely and the most intriguing matchup of the year so far in “Bernie.” Based on a true story, this quirky, darkly funny film by Richard Linklater tells the story of a charming oddball and the rich widow he befriends and kills, and no, I didn’t give anything away. The movie story really begins after the widow is dead.
Seth Rogen does his best dramatic work and Michelle Williams continues her string of memorable performances in “Take This Waltz.” This is an authentic, funny, sometimes heartbreaking slice of life. Sarah Silverman does excellent work as Rogen’s sister, an addict with a sharp tongue.
Yet another unlikely pairing: Steve Carrell and Keira Knightley in “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World.” Maybe it was that unwieldy title or the potentially off-putting premise of the world actually coming to an end, but for whatever reasons, this film found virtually no audience. And that’s a real shame, because this was a hilarious and surprisingly touching home run.
Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks had genuine chemistry in “People Like Us,” but they weren’t a romantic couple, they were brother and sister, though only one of them knows it for much of the story. Great work from Michelle Pfeiffer as Pine’s mother, and Olivia Wilde as his girlfriend. And one of the best screenplays of the year.
Finally there was the bawdy, hilarious, sublime “Hysteria,” based on the true story of the invention of…the vibrator. There should have been a lot more buzz about this movie. I don’t know why audiences didn’t plug in. It would have given them such a release. OK. I’ll stop now.
I’m Richard Roeper. See you at the movies.