50 Cinematic Blind Spots For Our New Normal Filling in the Blanks

Intro

50 Cinematic Blind Spots For Our New Quarantined Normal

Suddenly, the new normal is a housebound existence. To help pass the time, I have created the following list meant for anyone, novice to expert, to help fix those blind spots or to fill in the inordinate amount of free time we have at the moment. Without further ado, ignoring standard classic or popular films (Forrest Gump, The Shawshank Redemption, Goodfellas) here is a handpicked list of hidden gems, under-the-radar, criminally underseen, under-appreciated or forgotten films to watch during this self-regulated quarantine including ways to watch! Most importantly, I hope everyone stays safe out there.

The Apostle (1997)

the apostle

A deep south tale of redemption, Robert Duvall’s exquisite portrayal of a southern preacher/con-man looking for an absolution that won’t come any time soon is a true force of nature. Duvall’s performance hasn’t lost any velocity since its 1997-award winning run.

Available on Starz Play Amazon Channel, Starz, and DIRECTV!

The Art of the Steal (2013)

The Art of the Steal

One of the best documentaries I’ve seen on the overreach of government influence and the power of deep pockets— it plays out like a robbery heist thriller that may feel one-sided, but maybe the first to be justifiably so. The Art of the Steal is one of the most satisfying and demoralizing documentary films I have ever seen.

Available with IFC subscription, but there are full streams available for free on YouTube right now!

Blaze (2018)

Blaze

Ethan Hawke’s film has been compared to Inside Llewyn Davis, and I’m here to tell you it surpasses that film in almost every way. Blaze is wonderfully rich, heartbreakingly real, and told with overwhelming intimacy. Ben Dickey’s portrayal of Blaze Foley is a sight to behold.

Available on Showtime Play Amazon Channel, Showtime, and DIRECTV!

Blindspotting (2018)

Blindspotting

“Blindspotting is essential viewing. Carlos Estrada’s film, if not the best of the year, is the most important — shocking, powerful, provocative, incendiary, even funny. It’s ripped from the moment. It encapsulates today’s modern indignation. It’s a contemporary classic.” – From our review.

Available on HBO NOW Amazon Channel, Cinemax Play Amazon Channel, and HBO GO!

Blood and Wine (1997)

blood and wine

I don’t care what the haters say or the standard tropes Blood and Wine follows. The ending to Bob Rafelson’s unofficial trilogy with Nicholson, which also included Five Easy Pieces and The King of Marvin’s Garden, is a tropical, pastel noir with an all-star cast, including Jennifer Lopez, Michael Caine, Stephen Dorf, and Judy Davis. Blood and Wine is an engaging film told well, and that was misunderstood in ’97.

Available to rent on various digital platforms!

Bound (1996)

bound

The Wachowski’s freshman feature about a pair of crime-crossed lovers, Corky and Violet (Jennifer Tilly, Gina Gershon) who plan a scheme to steal millions of stashed mob money and pin the blame on Violet’s crooked boyfriend Caesar (Joe Pantoliano at his madcap best). Bound is a distinct, neo-noir caper that was ahead of its time and made for the #MeToo era of filmmaking.

Available on Showtime Play Amazon Channel and Pluto TV!

Capernaum (2018)

Cpaernaum

In the end, Capernaum may be hard to watch for some, easy to admire for many, but Nadine Labacki’s sad and tender film has the devastating power of a wrecking ball that can’t be denied, that leaves an indomitable mark that can’t be shaken, with staggering impact.

Available on Starz Play Amazon Channel, Starz, and DIRECTV!

Clockers (1995)

Clockers

A visceral crime film that gives us a powerful look at the urban drug trade and the bleak despair of escaping your circumstances, while exploring race relations between the police and the community they serve. Spike Lee’s Clockers is a lost in the shuffle classic.

Available on Starz Play Amazon Channel and to rent on various digital platforms!

The Crossing Guard (1996)

The Crossing Guard

The bitter tale of dealing with great loss, endless guilt, while trying to cure it with one fell swoop of revenge, is one of the two great performances by Jack Nicholson in the ’90s (the other being Blood & Wine) overlooked because of his success with As Good As it Gets, Wolf, and A Few Good Men. Nicholson, along with David Morse and Angelica Huston shines here, in a film about a grieving father who tells the drunk driver who killed his child that he will be killed in three days on the day he was paroled from prison.

Available on Hoopla and to rent on various digital platforms!

Dark City (1998)

Dark City

Dark City was a “twin-film” that came out the same year as The Matrix, with little fanfare and less critical acclaim except for one man who kept at the forefront of his reader’s attention — Roger Ebert. Alex Proya’s film is a wholly original sci-fi mystery adventure that has so many stunning visuals, twists, turns, and a jaw-dropping finale; it hasn’t been duplicated since.

Available to stream for FREE with ads on VUDU right now!

M.N. Miller

M.N. Miller has been a film and television writer for Ready Steady Cut since August of 2018 and is patiently waiting for the next Pearl Jam album to come out.

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