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The Wizard Of Oz
Sometimes it just doesn’t get any better than the classics. Director Victor Fleming created one of the most spectacular, beloved films of all time with The Wizard Of Oz.
Judy Garland is positively radiant as Dorothy in this film about a girl who is swept to the magical land of Oz.
As she tries to return home, she finds meaning in helping new friends and embarks on a quest to get back to her farm in Kansas.
It’s one of the most fun, whimsical and lovely experiences I ever had at the cinema watching a film. I went to a revival in the ’90s, and, pardon the pun, Oz blew me away.
It holds up more than 80 years later, and it is the highest possible calibre of escapism.
If you’re looking for a pace completely different from Oz, try this slow-burn, free-wheeling motorcycle film.
Easy Rider is a smooth, interesting and captivating look at two bikers headed to L.A. on a road trip that changes their lives.
As they traverse from New Orleans, they see things and meet people, including a man who surprises them more than they were expecting.
With an all-star cast including Director-writer-actor Dennis Hopper, writer-star Peter Fonda, and a young, entirely transfixing Jack Nicholson, this is one you’ll surely remember.
One of the most terrifying movies of the last decade, Insidious will fulfill all your needs for Halloween frights.
The story of a family trying to keep their young boy from being taken to another realm by evil spirits sounds so cliché at this point.
And yet, director James Wan – who made everything from Saw, to Furious 7 to Aquaman – has a visual flair that makes this all feel new.
With screenwriter Leigh Whannell – who wrote Saw and directed hits Upgrade and Invisible Man – on board, this one has a ton of talent behind the screen.
With Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, young Ty Simpkins and icon Lin Shaye in the cast, every part of this movie is constructed perfectly.
Put simply, it will scare the daylights out of you.
V For Vendetta
Who would have known 15 years ago that the anarchy and despair depicted in V For Vendetta would hit so close to home present day.
A fable of British tyranny that sees a freedom fighter named V and a young woman plot to overthrow the government, this is scarier now than ever again.
Written by the incredible Washowskis, who also were behind The Matrix trilogy, this is a topsy turvy thrill ride.
With Hugo Weaving giving a career performance and Natalie Portman shaving hear head bald in a bold transformation, it’s an acting tour-de-force not to be missed.
The Haunting Of Bly Manor
Though the comparisons to anthology Hill House make Bly pale in comparison, it’s a pretty spooky, creepy delight when taken on its own merits.
This second season of the anthology series by Netflix sees an American woman take a job as a nanny in an old home, caring for two children whose lives have been struck by tragedy.
She meets the chef, groundskeeper and housekeeper, who all stay and help out with the kids, but soon realizes everyone – including the children themselves – has a story.
As she unravels what’s really going on in Bly Manor, she comes face-to-face with unthinkable, terrifying truths.
This is well worth the watch if you like a slow-burn with rich characters, and I was engrossed the entire time.
Jordan Parker's weekly film reviews can be found on his blog, Parker & The Picture Shows.