They call me Mr. Tibbs

[Number of movies rated as of 11/16/2015 is 1540]

I approach my 10th anniversary with Netflix and thus will be desperately attempting to achieve the goal I had when I originally signed up for the service: complete the AFI top 100 movies of all time list(s). This one makes 93/122.

In the Heat of the Night

Netflix summary: Black Philadelphia detective Virgil Tibbs helps a redneck Southern sheriff solve a murder in this riveting study in racism that still strikes a chord. Rod Steiger won a Best Actor Oscar for his turn as the put-upon lawman who comes to respect Tibbs.

★★★★ Virgil Tibbs deals with racism in a southern town while trying to investigate a homicide. I now understand the pop culture reference that was going on in this scene of The Lion King:


Action Movie Marathon

[Number of movies rated as of 5/20/2015 is 1504]

I’ve always considered myself something of an action movie expert–my dad only owned intense war movies and my mom wasn’t a fan of buying us Disney tapes; her favorite movies were The Godfather and Bladerunner. I grew up on a strange mix of 80s-90s action movies with a few exceptions that included Home Alone, Home Alone 2, and Jurassic Park (all violent, basically).

Demolition Man

Netflix summary: In the violent 1990s, a cop (Sylvester Stallone) catches a relentless killer (Wesley Snipes), and both end up in a cryogenic deep freeze. In the peaceful year 2032, the criminal emerges from his long chill and attacks the now crimeless California. Unable to stop the bloodshed, a “Big Brother” boss (Nigel Hawthorne) defrosts the murderer’s past nemesis, who struggles to adapt to the ways of a new world and a restless new partner (Sandra Bullock).

★★★ tl;dr it was awesome minus the Bechdel test failure (not many action movies pass that test). Bullock’s character is painful.

Mad Max

Netflix summary: In a postapocalyptic future, jaded cop Max Rockatansky (Mel Gibson) is ready to retire. But his world is shattered when a malicious gang murders his family as an act of retaliation, forcing a devastated Max to hit the open road seeking vengeance. As he travels the Australian outback’s empty stretches of highway, he tours the bloodstained battlegrounds ruled by marauding bikers who feed on violence.

★★★★ I hear they are making a re-make of this movie. (Need to go see the new one!) Update: the new version is incredible. For the first time probably since getting Netflix I went out and bought a copy. Must see.


Netflix summary: When kickboxing champ Eric Sloane is crippled in the ring by the evil Tong Po, Eric’s younger brother, Kurt, seeks vengeance. But if he’s to vanquish Po, Kurt must first learn a martial art known as Muay Thai.

★★★ Van Damme is the king of 80s-90s action movies and this one is about average for what you expect. I feel like some of Kill Bill was pulled from this movie, but I could be wrong.

Con Air

Netflix summary: Newly released from prison, ex-con Cameron Poe finds himself on a transport plane that’s been hijacked by some of the most dangerous inmates in America. Cameron just wants to reunite with his wife and daughter, but the thugs have other plans.

★★★★ Once I watched Con Air I realized I’ve been missing out on one of the most actiony action movies ever! This movie has everything cheesey you could ever hope for, including Nicolas Cage with long hair that blows in the wind.


Netflix summary: Born into a civilization in the distant future, Beatrice is a teenager who learns that her unique cognitive skills make her useful to the authorities. Over time she discovers that she’s a Divergent, and thus slated for elimination by the government.

★★★★ Not sure why I was instantly pulled into this movie, I do recall yelling to my actual-real-life-boyfriend (not Netflix, my true love), “Come here and watch this movie! It’s hot people doing hot things!!” We both thoroughly enjoyed it. Something so damn appealing about post-apocalyptic young adult trilogies I guess.

The Giver

Netflix summary: In a future society called The Community, pain, war and disease have been eradicated, as have individuality and free will. When a teenager named Jonas learns the truth about the real world, he must decide whether to reveal all or remain quiet.

★★★ Falls into the genre of started-as-a-YA-book about the distopian future in which we are all categorized into rigid identities. I have no problems with this genre. This movie also falls into the category of “wasn’t-as-good-as-the-book.” I remember reading The Giver as an eight-year-old and being completely mesmerized. The movie falls short of my expectations but still gets three stars.

50 movies you have to see in your lifetime

Snagged this list from Looks like I’m going to have to add more movies to my queue. And I was down to 150 too (the low end).

27/50–just over half. Will update as I see them.

  1. Heathers
  2. Together
  3. When Harry Met Sally
  4. The Big Lebowski
  5. Who Framed Roger Rabbit
  6. The Cabin in the Woods
  7. True Romance
  8. Wet Hot American Summer
  9. The Princess Diaries
  10. Casa Blanca
  11. Escape From New York
  12. Boyhood
  13. All About Eve
  14. Yojimbo
  15. Marie Antoinette
  16. The Usual Suspects
  17. The Big Chill
  18. The Beginners
  19. Singin’ in the Rain
  20. Frances Ha
  21. The Princess Bride
  22. Rushmore
  23. Jaws
  24. The Lives of Others
  25. (500) Days of Summer
  26. Jodorowsky’s Dune
  27. Short Term 12
  28. Repulsion
  29. The Royal Tenenbaums
  30. Harold and Maude
  31. The Apartment
  32. The Landlord
  33. The Up Series
  34. Paprika
  35. The Heartbreak Kid
  36. Black Cat, White Cat
  37. The Shining
  38. Clean, Shaven
  39. The General
  40. American Graffiti
  41. Love Actually
  42. In The Mood For Love
  43. Princess Mononoke
  44. This is Spinal Tap
  45. The Raid: Redemption
  46. Lord of the Rings
  47. The Godfather
  48. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  49. Vertigo
  50. Kramer vs. Kramer

Latest Movies: October 1 2014 – January 16 2015

[Number of movies rated as of 1/23/2015 is 1465]


Netflix summary: When his wife (Liv Tyler) falls in league with a drug dealer, average guy Frank D’Arbo (Rainn Wilson) dons the guise of a superhero, dubs himself the Crimson Bolt and tries to keep a tagalong comic-book store clerk (Ellen Page) from becoming his sidekick. But it’s hard to be a superhero when all you’ve got to work with is a pipe wrench. Kevin Bacon co-stars in this action-driven dramedy from writer-director James Gunn.

★★★★ It’s been several months since I watched this movie. Netflix says I gave it four stars so I’m going with that.

Django Unchained

Netflix Summary: Accompanied by a German bounty hunter, a freed slave named Django travels across America to free his wife from a sadistic plantation owner. Quentin Tarantino directs this modern-day spaghetti Western.

★★★ This was the second time I’ve watched this and I was hoping to enjoy it more than I did the first round considering my love for Tarantino. It lacks something in Tarantino’s other movies, however…is it that he doesn’t humanize the villains? I’m still not sure. Good, just not great.


Netflix Summary:Police chief Marge Gunderson — a serious sleuth who’s sharper than her folksy accent suggests — is hot on the trail of a Minneapolis car dealer conspiring with two kidnappers to snatch his wife so he can pocket part of the hefty ransom.

★★★★★ Love this movie, it’s one of my favorites. I was tempted to watch it again after going to a wedding in the midwest. All of the accents reminded me of this movie.

Hungry for Change

Netflix Summary: This documentary exposes secrets the diet, weight loss and food industries don’t want consumers to know about: deceptive strategies designed to keep you coming back for more. Find out what’s keeping people from having the body and health they want.

★★★ Meh this movie does not introduce any theories you have not heard before.

The Wolf of Wall Street

Netflix Summary: Martin Scorcese’s high-rolling Wall Street drama is based on the memoirs of stockbroker Jordan Belfort, whose giddy career — involving audacious scams and confrontations with the FBI and other agencies — ended in federal prison.

★★★ Nothing new here. Just another movie glorifying drugs and financial fraud. Di Caprio and Scorcese’s names are the only thing that put this movie in the spotlight.


Netflix Summary: While investigating a series of suspicious bear killings, a group of students trail a mysterious “hunter” who tries to elude them at every turn. The group soon learns that his prey is far more dangerous and mystical than mere bears.

★★★★ I am more familiar with Norwegian-grandmother version of trolls, so this was a pretty cool interpretation of Scandinavian folklore, for me at least. I haven’t seen too many Norwegian films, I’ll have to remedy that….

Women Who Kill

Netflix Summary: Top comediennes Amy Schumer, Rachel Feinstein, Nikki Glaser and Marina Franklin join up in New York City for one hilarious night of stand-up comedy. From racism to pregnancy, nothing is off-limits as each comic delivers her own sharp point-of-view.

★★★★ I credit this for introducing me to Marina Franklin, who I hope does more stand-up soon.

Women Aren’t Funny

Netflix Summary: Comedian Bonnie McFarlane enlists Joan Rivers, Wanda Sykes, Sarah Silverman and other greats to put to rest the notion that women aren’t funny.

★★ Sometimes funny things happen in this documentary but….mostly not. Women are funny…just not the woman who made this IMO.

Reefer Madness

Netflix Summary: In this 1930s propaganda film turned cult classic comedy, a group of teens seduced by the power of “reefer” take a few puffs and instantly become psychotic killers, rapists and jazz addicts.

★★★ In retrospect, propaganda is always hilarious.


Netflix Summary: When a serious menace threatens MI6, James Bond is on the case — putting aside his own life and personal issues to hunt and obliterate the perpetrators. Meanwhile, secrets arise from M’s past that strain Bond’s loyalty to his longtime boss.

★★★ Meh. For some reason I have zero interest in Bond movies. I just don’t. I’m not actually sure I’ve watched an entire one. Not even this one; I stopped paying attention and started playing around on the internet mid-movie.

Sleepless in Seattle

Netflix Summary: Fate and a tenacious 8-year-old boy conspire to unite lovelorn widower Sam Baldwin and unhappily engaged journalist Annie Reed in this Oscar-nominated romantic comedy inspired by the 1957 classic An Affair to Remember.

★★★ I haven’t watched this movie since I was a child and I decided to re-watch this in order to see if I could spot familiar Seattle landmarks now that I live in downtown. It’s a classic 90s RomCom.


Netflix Summary: After a major spiritual awakening during rehab, businesswoman Amy Jellicoe resolves to redesign her life toward higher goodness in this arch HBO sitcom. Trouble is, her friends and colleagues have little use for the new, philosophically improved Amy.

★★★★★ While a little slow-moving, I highly enjoyed this dark comedy HBO show. The pilot had me rolling on the floor. Laura Dern does a fantastic job of balancing a character who is both gratingly irritating and somehow inspiring. With the mask of a New Age compassion, she manages to take down the corporation that put her in mental-health treatment center she goes to in the pilot. One reviewer accurately noted it walks the edge between a life lesson and a parody. Definitely recommend.

Family Tree

Netflix Summary: In this mockumentary series from Christopher Guest and Jim Piddock, Chris O’Dowd plays a 30-year-old struggling to find his identity. Luckily, he inherits a box full of characters when a great-aunt leaves him her belongings.

★★★ I ❤ Chris O’Dowd and genealogy so this seemed like something I would enjoy. It definitely had the feel of a show that wasn’t doing so well and had to be wrapped up pretty quickly but I found it hilarious.

Now to start (late) what I call “Action Movie January” where I gather all my Stallone, JCVD, Hackman, Eastwood, Schwarzenegger, Gibson, and De Niro movies.

Latest Movies: August 13 – September 31

[Number of movies rated as of 10/3/2014 is 1444]


Russia’s Toughest Prisons

Netflix Summary: Three Russian prisons unlock their doors to an international film crew and reveal what life inside is like for the nation’s most brutal criminals.

★★★ Holy Christ Russians are super intense in their prisons. For example, they have bred their own breed of gigantic, violent dogs to bark in the prisoners’ faces nonstop. And yet once you hear what the prisoners did to get in there…you question your initial reaction.


National Geographic: Inside Guantanamo

Netflix Summary: This documentary chronicles the daily routines of captives and guards at Guantanamo Bay detention center, showcasing its briefings and operations.

★★★ I watched this immediately following Russia’s Toughest Prisons, and I have to say, I am no longer concerned about the prisoners in Guantanamo. They should be glad they aren’t in a Russian prison.


Bermuda Triangle Exposed

Netflix Summary: This exposé dives deep to explore the 440,000 square miles of ocean below the deadly marine graveyard known as the Bermuda Triangle.

★★ I was hoping this would be cooler than it turned out to be. But it was an interesting look at the theories of why so many people have died or disappeared in this area of the ocean.


World War Z

Netflix Summary: A U.N. employee races against time and fate as he travels the world trying to stop the spread of a deadly zombie pandemic.

★★★★ I do love me some zombie flicks. This one does draw a lot on other films but then offers up its own twist on what I like to call “zombie theory.” A worthy watch.


Seal Team Six: The Raid on Osama Bin Laden

Netflix Summary: In this dramatic recreation, U.S. Navy SEAL Team 6 trains for a critical mission, then executes a tough nighttime raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound.

★★★ I think I was drunk when I watched this. An interesting watch if you’ve seen Zero Dark Thirty.


Inside: Lego

Netflix Summary: Travel to Lego’s Denmark headquarters to learn about the toy manufacturer’s history and production, as well as the CEO who helped revive the brand.

★★★ Legos were probably my favorite toys growing up so I was immediately interested when I saw this documentary on Netflix. It’s pretty fascinating to see the machines that make legos and interviews of the people who work there. Although I think more women should be featured–girls love legos too!



Netflix Summary: Two girls left to fend for themselves in the forest for five lonely years after the death of their mother find refuge in the home of their uncle. But it soon becomes clear that the girls have not arrived alone in this woodsy supernatural chiller.

★★ I remember seeing the preview for this movie back when it first came out and thinking to myself, “No way in hell am I going to watch that.” It looked way too scary for my overly imaginative mind. However, having recently procured a 55″ 1080p television, and free HBO, I’ve been doing a bit of movie-watching, as you can imagine. Nothing is sweeter than commercial-free HBO bliss. And one Saturday, trapped in a languorous fit on the couch, the movie Mama started post-Goonies. Unwilling to change the channel to one that would have commercials, and almost immediately captivated by the opening scene, I resumed my supine position. The movie does start out pretty freaky. Near the end it tumbles when they show the monster too much. Horror movies need to keep in mind that it is the unknown that is the most terrifying. And the end? What the hell? How was anyone okay with that ending?


Lone Survivor

Netflix Summary: Mark Wahlberg stars as Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell in this action-drama based on an ill-fated real-life mission to bring down a Taliban boss. The stakes get even higher when Luttrell and his unit are ambushed in the Hindu Kush region of Afghanistan.

★★★★ The fight scenes seem very realistic–I kept feeling like I was trapped and being shot at. Mark Wahlberg does a great job. I would definitely recommend this movie if you’re into this genre.


The Monuments Men

Netflix Summary: In a race against time, a crew of art historians and museum curators unite to recover renowned works of art stolen by Nazis before Hitler destroys them. Written, directed and starring George Clooney.

★★★ In the middle of this movie, after noting the terrible writing, I asked aloud “I know George Clooney directed in it and is starring it it…did he write this?” Two seconds later, Netflix DVD envelope clasped in my fist, I confirmed my suspicions. There are a lot of long, significant pauses, concluding with anticlimactic statements that fall flat. But I’m glad I watched it and there were some funny lines here and there, along with a great cast. This movie made me want to read the book of the same title.


The Walking Dead

Netflix Summary: In the wake of a zombie apocalypse, survivors hold on to the hope of humanity by banding together to wage a fight for their own survival.

★★★★★ I just love this show and have been re-watching it to prepare for its season 5 premiere on October 12, 2014.


Latest Movies: July 1 – August 12

[Number of movies rated as of 8/12/2014 is 1426]

American Horror Story

Netflix summary: Exploring humankind’s unsettling capacity for evil, this darkly twisted drama plays upon the power of supernatural fears and everyday horrors.

★★★★ This show hooked me like a sea bass. I don’t tend to watch horror movies but the fact that it was in serial televised format intrigued me. Interestingly, each season begins with a new setting and new characters while keeping mostly the same cast. Jessica Lange kills, both literally and artistically.



Netflix summary: In this sci-fi romantic comedy starring Joaquin Phoenix, love comes to a lonely young writer in the sleekest of packages when he finds himself falling for the advanced operating system he purchased to run his life.

★★★ An interesting look at how technology is redefining how we emotionally connect.


It’s a Wonderful Life

Netflix summary: It’s a wonderful film. Frank Capra’s inverted take on A Christmas Carol stars Jimmy Stewart as George Bailey, a good man who’s spent a lifetime giving up on his dreams in order to keep life in his small town humming. When a guardian angel named Clarence finds a despondent George poised to jump off a bridge, he shows George what life would’ve been like had he never been born.

★★★★ We’ve all seen the ending to this movie whether we’ve wanted to or not. This being the first time I’ve actually watched the movie from start to finish, I found myself weeping at the end. It deserves its place in all the best movie lists.


Doomsday Bunkers

As the leader of Deep Earth Bunker, Scott Bales builds one-of-a-kind bunkers for eccentric clients who are preparing for the end of the world.

★★★ Mildly interesting look at a quirky engineer who has the enviable task of running his own business making bunkers for people who are totally batshit. This show lead me to….


Doomsday Preppers

★★★★ This show isn’t actually on Netflix…so I had to turn to the shady world of streaming television from sketchy websites. During the length of each episode, National Geographic follows three different #preppers and their efforts to ready themselves for when “shit hits the fan.” They store massive quantities of food, arm themselves to the teeth, and warn their children that roving bands of vandals will one day break into their house, steal their food, and rape them all…unless they’re ready for it. God I love crazy people. The strangest part of the show, in my opinion, is that after the preppers reveal all of their food stores, weapons, inventions, and paranoid fantasies, National Geographic rates their preparedness and offers them suggestions for how to be even crazier. It always sounds something like “while the experts agree that having five years worth of food in your basement will prepare you for an impending pole shift, they think you should have a better security system and more gallons of water.”

I will  probably write up an entire article about this show.

Latest movies: June 1 – July 1

[Number of movies rated as of 7/7/2014 is 1421]


Ok it’s been a while, cut me some slack; it’s summertime and one just doesn’t feel like being indoors watching movies, particularly if one watches them on one’s laptop in one’s 10×10 apartment bedroom because one doesn’t have a TV. Anyway, this is what happened after I finished Orange is the New Black #OITNB.



Netflix summary: Determined to get his mitts on $9 billion in a secret DEA account so he can use it to fight terrorism, rogue agent Gabriel Shear recruits encryption expert Stanley Jobson to hack into the government mainframe.

★★★ While anyone who knows anything about network security might find this movie farfetched (did I just out myself as a network nerd?), that’s not really the purpose of the movie…Ok why didn’t anyone tell me Hugh Jackman was this hot in 2001? Also, Halle Berry’s boobs. I can’t say that I wasn’t entertained.


Best in Show

Netflix summary: Master mockumentarian Christopher Guest (Waiting for Guffman) is at it again with this snarky send-up of canine culture that traverses the galloping neuroses surrounding one highly competitive dog show in Pennsylvania. Talented improvisers Parker Posey, Eugene Levy, Michael McKean and Catherine O’Hara elevate this satire to the stuff of genius. Fans of This Is Spinal Tap, television’s “SCTV” — and dogs, of course — will find much to love.

★★★★ I loved this movie when it originally came out (2000). The jokes about Starbucks seemed so cutting-edge back then. This movie does a good job exploring the strange relationships people have with their dogs, particularly in the dog show industry.


Japanese Story

Netflix summary: During a field trip, geologist Sandy (Toni Collette) has the unfortunate luck of being marooned in the Pilbara desert with a man she can’t stand. Finding him completely irritating and rather egotistical, Sandy soon learns that his feelings for her are just as contemptuous. The saying that things can only get better doesn’t apply to these two, as their increasingly remote location only adds to the already challenging situation.

★★★ Well of the many Australian movies I’ve rented this year, I thought I might find more than two that weren’t completely depressing. The plot summary above does not hint at the tragedy this, and most Australian movies are. After discussing it with a couple Aussies I learned that “Australian people don’t even watch Australian movies.” Although I thought the acting was good and the plot somewhat compelling, I have removed all other Australian movies from my queue. You may be wondering what were the two Australian movies that don’t make you want to end your life: “Kenny” and “The Castle.”


Being John Malcovich

Netflix summary: When puppeteer Craig Schwartz discovers a portal into John Malkovich’s brain, he decides to sell 15-minute excursions into the esteemed actor’s mind. But soon, Craig’s wife becomes obsessed with the experience.

★★★★ Didn’t entirely get this movie when it first came out, possibly because I was in 6th grade. But on revisiting it, I found it hilarious. Thought-provokingly layered while also being self-deprecating. And overall just trippy. John Cusack does a great job.


Persuasion (1995 version)

Netflix summary: Nearly a decade after breaking her engagement to sea captain Frederick Wentworth because of pressure from her financially strapped family, Anne Elliot meets up with him again and finds she still has feelings for the now rich and successful officer.

★★★ I put this in my queue after reading the book earlier last month. It was meh. A typical situation where the movie veers from the book and I didn’t nearly enjoy it as must as I could have. No chemistry between the main characters is a big no no for any Austen adaptation, in my opinion.

List of 1970s movies to watch

[Number of movies rated as of 6/16/2014 is 1399]

It is widely agreed that the 1970s was American cinema’s golden age. I recently watched A Decade Under the Influence (2003) which explores some of the best films of the era. Netflix describes it as “an ode to the art form, one that pays homage to the ‘auteurs’ that emerged from that distinctive time period, such as Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorsese.”


There are, of course, more movies–important movies–that can be added to this list but I thought I’d put down some of the ones mentioned in the documentary that I haven’t seen and/or aren’t that well-known. These are all now in my queue and I’m going to be slowly wading into them over the course of the next year or so. Enjoy!


Puzzle of a Downfall Child (1970): Award-winning actress Faye Dunaway portrays tortured former model Lou Andreas Sand, who, after suffering a nervous breakdown, leads a reclusive life at the beach. Her former lover Aaron visits with plans to record her story on tape. The tales unfold, but are Lou’s memories real or mere delusions? Barry Primus, Barry Morse and Roy Scheider co-star in director Jerry Schatzberg’s Golden Globe-nominated psychological descent into madness.

Scarecrow (1973): Meeting on a lonely stretch of California highway while thumbing their way east, loner ex-con Max (Gene Hackman) and likable loser Lionel (Al Pacino) decide to travel in tandem. Along the way, they develop a profound friendship, but it gets put to the test when Lionel faces a devastating reality. Director Jerry Schatzberg’s fascinating character study features sterling supporting performances by Eileen Brennan and Richard Lynch.

The French Connection (1971): Tough-as-nails narcotics detective “Popeye” Doyle and his partner, Russo, are in hot pursuit of a suave French drug dealer who may be the key to a multimillion-dollar heroin-smuggling operation in this classic crime thriller inspired by true events.

Dirty Harry (1971): When a madman dubbed “The Scorpio Killer” terrorizes San Francisco, hard-boiled cop Harry Callahan — famous for his take-no-prisoners approach to law enforcement — is tasked with hunting down the psychopath.

Play Misty for Me (1971): Silver-tongued radio disc jockey Dave (Clint Eastwood) can’t help but notice the persistent calls from a female to “play ‘Misty’ for me.” But a chance meeting with infatuated fan Evelyn leads to a brief and steamy love affair. Dave quickly learns he’s in for more than a little night music, and that Evelyn will stop at nothing — even the return of one of Dave’s old flames — to have him all to herself. The film marks Eastwood’s directorial debut.

The Last Picture Show (1971): There’s not much to do in the windswept Texas hamlet of Anarene, where the town’s only cinema is about to close forever. So high schoolers Sonny (Timothy Bottoms) and Duane (Jeff Bridges) lust after incorrigible flirt Jacy Farrow (Cybill Shepherd) while trying to chart their uncertain futures. When Duane heads for Korea after joining the service and Jacy gets shipped off to college, Sonny is left behind in a veritable ghost town.

The Conversation (1974): Francis Ford Coppola follows The Godfather with this intimate film about an audio surveillance expert who faces a moral quandary when he suspects that a couple whose conversation he’s been hired to record will be murdered.

McCabe and Mrs Miller (1971): From director Robert Altman comes a dazzling original film capturing the essence of frontier life while overturning Old West myths. John McCabe (Warren Beatty), an entrepreneurial vagabond, moves to a ramshackle Pacific Northwest town to establish a saloon/brothel. He soon meets the shrewd Mrs. Miller (Julie Christie), a professional madam with years of experience; together, they start a booming business and a blossoming relationship.

Sleeper (1973): Health-food store owner Miles Monroe (Woody Allen, who also directs) bites the dust in 1973 and ends up cryogenically frozen, only to be defrosted in a dystopian future in which people pleasure themselves with an “orgasmatron” and dissidents’ brains are “electronically simplified.” Upon becoming a hunted man, Miles masquerades as an android butler in the home of a self-indulgent poet (Diane Keaton) — but the ruse doesn’t last.

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974): Ex-thief Thunderbolt and fun-loving drifter Lightfoot team up with Thunderbolt’s shady old associates to restage a robbery of a bank. Writer-director Michael Cimino kicked off his career with this irreverent caper thriller full of crackling dialogue.

Who’s That Knocking at My Door? (1967): A young couple’s romantic bliss is shattered in this dark drama from Martin Scorsese. When a Catholic reformed street thug (Harvey Keitel) finds out that his girlfriend (Zina Bethune) was raped years earlier, he’s unable to cope with the revelation. Despite his deep feelings for the girl, he’s chained to a repressive moral code and a social milieu that assigns women to one of two categories: virgin or whore.

Mean Streets (1973): In director Martin Scorsese’s look at New York City’s Little Italy, a small-time hood deals with the pressures of working his way up the ranks of a local mob, while coping with his family’s disapproval of his epileptic girlfriend.

Dog Day Afternoon (1975): To get money for his gay lover’s sex-change operation, Sonny (Al Pacino) — who’s married with kids — teams up with Sal (John Cazale) to rob a New York bank on a scorching-hot summer day. The stickup goes awry when the press gets wind of the circus sideshow-esque story. Chris Sarandon, Charles Durning and James Broderick co-star in this classic Sidney Lumet-directed film based on an actual event from the 1970s.

The King of Marvin Gardens (1972): Uptight deejay David Staebler (Jack Nicholson) travels to Atlantic City, N.J., to learn more about an outlandish, get-rich-quick scheme cooked up by his manic brother, Jason (Bruce Dern). Despite David’s suspicions, he plays along — but when the plan’s flaws become evident, neither Jason nor his beauty-queen girlfriend (Ellen Burstyn) heed David’s protestations. Director Bob Rafelson’s evocative drama costars Scatman Crothers.

Carnal Knowledge (1971): Mike Nichols directs a sterling cast in this trailblazing film, which chronicles the sexual mores and escapades of two college pals — loathsome misogynist Jonathan (Jack Nicholson) and shy, neurotic Sandy (Art Garfunkel) — over two decades. Jonathan and Sandy embody a laundry list of emotional dysfunction as they move from one relationship to the next. Candice Bergen, Rita Moreno and Oscar-nominated Ann-Margret co-star as the women in their orbit.

A Touch of Class (1973): Glenda Jackson collected an Oscar for her sterling performance as a shrewd British fashion designer who falls for married insurance adjuster Steve Blackburn (George Segal). Their liaison begins swimmingly, but a succession of comic pitfalls complicate matters. Those include a meddling friend (Paul Sorvino), a coupe with clutch problems and Segal’s dislocated back, leading to what started as a run-of-the-mill affair ending on an unexpected note.

Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974): Ellen Burstyn won an Oscar playing Alice Hyatt, a destitute widow who must find the strength to go on for her young son (Alfred Lutter) in the face of loneliness and fear, in this classic slice of 1970s cinema from director Martin Scorsese. When the pair lands in Tucson, Ariz., Alice takes a job at a diner and meets a customer (Kris Kristofferson) who helps mend her fractured heart. The film spawned the popular TV sitcom “Alice.”

An Unmarried Woman (1978): A groundbreaking film at the time of its release, director Paul Mazursky’s poignant portrayal of a woman dealing with the dissolution of her marriage won many honors, including Oscar nominations for Best Picture, Screenplay and Actress (Jill Clayburgh). When her seemingly perfect husband (Michael Murphy) leaves her for another woman, devastated wife Erica (Clayburgh) must find untapped strength within herself to build a new life.

Klute (1971): Thoroughly inhabiting what is by far one of her greatest roles, Jane Fonda won a Best Actress Oscar for her role as a manipulative big-city prostitute who helps a small-town detective named Klute (Donald Sutherland) solve a missing persons case. “Working girl” Bree Daniels (Fonda) dismisses men as victims of their own base instincts — until she meets the incorruptible Klute and starts to fall for him.

They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? (1969): A Depression-era dance marathon with a large cash prize brings out the worst in its desperate contestants in director Sydney Pollack’s powerful drama starring Jane Fonda, Michael Sarrazin and Gig Young (who won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar). The competitors — including a jaded young woman, a drifter and a pregnant farm girl — push one another to the brink of exhaustion, and finally into the unthinkable. Susannah York and Red Buttons also star.

All the President’s Men (1976): The film that launched a thousand journalism school students, All the President’s Men chronicles how the work of reporters Bob Woodward (Robert Redford) and Carl Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman) contributed to the public downfall of President Richard M. Nixon. The duo connected a Washington, D.C., hotel break-in with a Nixon “dirty tricks” team assigned to discredit Democratic rivals, launching a series of tense events that forced Nixon to resign.

Shampoo (1975): In this racy satire set in the narcissistic world of late 1960s Los Angeles, a womanizing hairdresser trying to open his own salon in Beverly Hills has trouble juggling his business and sexual affairs.

Coming Home (1978): While her husband is in Vietnam, Sally Hyde volunteers at a veterans’ clinic, where she encounters embittered paraplegic Luke Martin. Feeling progressively disconnected from her spouse, Sally begins an emotional and physical affair with Luke.

The Last Detail (1973): In this classic 1970s road movie, Officers Buddusky (Jack Nicholson) and Mulhall (Otis Young) must escort a young sailor (Randy Quaid) to a New England military prison, where the 18-year-old is about to serve eight years for a trivial offense. Determined to cram all the living they can into one lost weekend, the boys booze, brawl and fornicate their way to their ultimate destination. Both Nicholson and Quaid deliver Oscar-nominated performances.

Being There (1979): The uncomplicated life of simple-minded Chance is changed after a run-in with wealthy Eve, and soon his “wisdom” — mostly garden related — has Washington’s political elite hailing him as brilliant.


This week’s movies: May 18-25 and May 25 – June 1

Confession: All I watched these past two weeks was Orange is the New Black


Orange is the New Black

Netflix summary: From the creator of “Weeds” comes a heartbreaking and hilarious new series set in a women’s prison. Piper Chapman’s wild past comes back to haunt her, resulting in her arrest and detention in a federal penitentiary. To pay her debt to society, Piper trades her comfortable New York life for an orange prison jumpsuit and finds unexpected conflict and camaraderie amidst an eccentric group of inmates.

★★★★★ Yes! What could be more entertaining than throwing a waspy, upper-middle class, blonde woman into a prison. She starts out pathetic and we watch her slowly evolve into the crazy person she already was…. A little glad I watched this series late so that I don’t have to wait too long to find out how the cliff hanger from season 1 ends. Season 2 premieres on June 6!