Friday, June 16, 2017

Thursday Movie Picks #153: Movies Based on True Events



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.


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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Movies Based on True Events [Suggested by Katie Hogan]

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This week's theme is a suggestion from Katie Hogan of www.shelikesmovies.blogspot.com
I'm tempted to pick period dramas, but I'm going to resist and pick titles that a little more contemporary.

All the President's Men (1976)
Two reporters uncover details of the Watergate scandal. Hmm...just feels very relevant. If you haven't seen this yet, probably time. 

Spotlight (2015)
If you like All the President's Men or movies about investigative journalism in general, definitely check out Spotlight. It's about the Boston Globe uncovering the massive scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese.  

The Big Short (2015)
The subject is all very dry: the credit and housing bubble collapse, but the movie does, I think, quite a good job of making it understandable for a layperson.


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10 comments:

  1. I have never seen All The Presidents Men and have to one day but I have seen the other 2 and really thought they were quite good. I really liked Spotlight and found it riveting and so very sad.

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    1. Spotlight...yep so sad...also in the end where they had a list of cities around the world with such cases as well.

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  2. All good picks with one of my all time favorites included. Of the three The Big Short was the one I was the least enthusiastic about. It was a good film and the subject was interesting but it was just a trifle distant. When I was watching Spotlight I couldn't help but see echoes of All the President's Men but it was an excellent film on its own merits. However it's All the President's Men that I find endlessly watchable, perhaps it's because even though I was pretty young I can remember the actual incident. Every role is cast to perfection and I notice different things each time I watch which is frequently. Robards deserved his Oscar but I can't believe Hal Holbrook was passed over for his great work as Deep Throat.

    This is a wide open genre and one I'm a fan of making it easy to settle on three favorites.

    Frost/Nixon (2008)-In 1977 well known showman David Frost (Michael Sheen) famous for glib interviews with pop stars is suffering a bit of a slump. He hits upon what he thinks is a surefire idea for a ratings grabbing showpiece. He sets out to interview former president Richard Nixon (Frank Langella), living in seclusion in San Clemente, CA after resigning in disgrace following the Watergate scandal. Nixon’s agent Swifty Lazar sure that it will be a puff piece encourages Tricky Dicky to take the sizable amount of money offered and run. The series of interviews get off to a rocky start with a loquacious and obdurate Nixon evading any sort of hard questioning but suddenly an unexpected breakthrough changes the course of the sessions into a revealing confessional. Sheen & Langella repeated their roles from the hit Broadway play that was the basis for the film which in turn was based on the actual interviews.

    The Queen (2006)-In 1997 Queen Elizabeth II (Helen Mirren) has been on the English throne for 45 years, respected and beloved worldwide. Even more popular, though not within the royal family, is her former daughter-in-law Princess Diana whose marriage to Prince Charles had collapsed in acrimony after a decade of high exposure. She has since become a goodwill ambassador for many worthwhile causes as well as a paparazzi magnet and a bane to her former mother-in-law. When Diana is killed in a car accident caused by those same paparazzi hounding her the queen believes the proper course is a quiet funeral followed by a period of private mourning owing to the fact that Diana is no longer considered a member of the royal family. That turns out to be an almost catastrophic miscalculation that threatens the sovereignty of the throne and which requires new Prime Minister Tony Blair (Michael Sheen) to step in and guide her through to avert a disastrous outcome. Helen Mirren won an Oscar for her much lauded performance.

    Inherit the Wind (1960)-Small town teacher Bertram Cates (Dick York-best known as the first Darrin on Bewitched) is arrested for teaching Darwin’s evolutionary theory to his students and put on trial. Representing him gratis is famed attorney Henry Drummond (Spencer Tracy) as the opposition is spearheaded by blustery litigator Matthew Harrison Brady (Fredric March) while wryly cynical newspaperman E. K. Hornbecker (Gene Kelly) observes and reports. As passions run high in the oppressive summer heat the local pastor Reverend Jeremiah Brown (Claude Akins) incites the townspeople with fiery rhetoric. A real acting showcase for both leads aided by a beautiful performance from Florence Eldridge (she was March’s spouse in real life) as Brady’s gentle wife who tries to temper his more outrageous behavior. Semi fictionalized version of the Scopes Monkey trial wherein famed lawyers Clarence Darrow & William Jennings Bryant fought in court over Darwin’s theory.

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    1. I recently saw Frost/Nixon - great film - both lead performances were fantastic!! Not a fan of The Queen film - there is so much of this around, the royals provide endless films, plays, books, its all too much for me. I never got the hype. Inherit the Wind sounds interesting - never heard about it before.

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    2. Ohhh Frost/Nixon...I like that as well...totally did not think of that.

      Haha yes...there are a lot of movies about royalty. I don't really care what the current royalty of whatever country is up to now...but I do enjoy history and depiction of history in movies...so I find movies about royalty interesting...and when set in the past when the monarchy had immense power...those movies are also about the state of country, politics, war, religious conflict...etc.

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  3. Gotta say I still havent seen All the Presidents Men - should really get on that.

    I really enjoyed Spolight but kinda hoped there was doc out there I can watch too. Which i'm sure there is. Love Keaton in this.

    I really couldnt get into or actually understand The Big Short....I was more into my caramac buttons in the cinema.

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  4. I am glad you added Spotlight, I had wanted to see that and forgot the name of it.

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  5. Great picks! I didn't like Spotlight and The Big Short as much as I would, but they were good. All the President's Men is amazing.

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  6. Love all three of these movies. Great picks!

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  7. All three of these are great films!

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