MOVIE RECOMMENDATIONS - Summer 2012 - GIANT List plus TV & a TOP 250 List!
12 Jul 12 - By J. Ganz - TheRazzLine Compilation
Hello Movie Lovers! If this HUGE list of awesome movies isn't enough to keep your Summer going, we've also added a snippet of IMDB's top 250 list, and the latest recommendations for TV on DVD/Streaming! Enjoy!
GREAT MOVIES! Summer 2012
Killer Elite (2011)
We loved this movie. So much great action, great car chases, fight scenes etc. Good story line. A deadly game of international intrigue. Robert DeNiro, Jason Statham, and Clive Owen.
IMDB: When his mentor is taken captive, a retired member of Britain's Elite Special Air Service is forced into action. His mission: kill three assassins dispatched by their cunning leader.
This Means War (2012)
A fun, romantic comedy. A nice break from the usual action, high body count movies we see. Lots of laughs.
IMDB: Two top CIA operatives wage an epic battle against one another after they discover they are dating the same woman.
The Year of Living Dangerously (1982)
GREAT film with a notable soundtrack!
IMDB: A young Australian reporter tries to navigate the political turmoil of Indonesia during the rule of President Sukarno with the help of a diminutive photographer.
Stars: Mel Gibson, Sigourney Weaver and Linda Hunt
Another great one!
Netflix: A last-minute mission in Dublin turns deadly for stunning secret operative Mallory Kane when she realizes she's been betrayed -- and that her own life is no longer safe. Now, to outwit her enemies, she'll simply have to outlast them.
Cast: Gina Carano, Michael Fassbender, Ewan McGregor, Bill Paxton Channing Tatum, Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011) (4th Vote)
Netflix: When a young computer hacker is tasked with investigating a prying journalist, their separate missions become entangled amid a decades-old conspiracy. David Fincher directs this English adaptation of Stieg Larsson's novel.
Cast: Daniel Craig, Rooney Mara, Christopher Plummer, Stellan Skarsgard.
In America (2002)
Netflix: With their two daughters in tow, Johnny and Sarah leave Ireland and head to New York so Johnny can pursue an acting career. What follows is a series of adventures, both comical and terrifying, as they struggle to make the most of their new life.
The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai Across the 8th Dimension (1984)
Netflix: Peter Weller stars as the titular hero, who makes his living as a physicist, neurosurgeon, secret agent and rock star traveling through a comic book universe with his band of assistants and background musicians.
Big Trouble in Little China (1986)
Netflix: Traveling through a shadowy world filled with supernatural creatures and spectacular action, regular guy Jack Burton (Kurt Russell) and lawyer Gracie Law (Kim Cattrall) try to track down a 2,000-year-old magician, Lo Pan (James Hong), who has kidnapped Burton's friend's green-eyed fiancée. John Carpenter directs this adventurous spoof of the martial-arts movie genre set in San Francisco's Chinatown district.
A fascinating true story.
Netflix: In the 18th century, the British Parliament offers a substantial sum to anyone who can devise a means for calculating longitude at sea. Soon clockmaker John Harrison (Michael Gambon) begins experiments to build an accurate timepiece unaffected by sea travel. In a parallel story, a retired World War I naval officer (Jeremy Irons) attempts to locate and restore Harrison's clocks. The two men's struggles are linked across a span of 200 years.
Reds (1981) (3rd Vote)
This is a movie from 1981 that I recently watched again and enjoyed as much as the first time I saw it.
Netflix: Radical journalist and socialist John Reed (Warren Beatty), along with his paramour, protofeminist Louise Bryant (Diane Keaton), gets swept up in the world-changing spirit, euphoria and aftermath of Russia's 1917 Bolshevik Revolution and the newly founded Soviet Union. Jack Nicholson, Paul Sorvino, Edward Herrmann, M. Emmet Walsh and Maureen Stapleton co-star in this Beatty-directed, Oscar-winning epic.
A dark movie, with a very good story.
Netflix: Drug-addicted attorney Mike and his business partner Paul take on a case involving an emergency room nurse who has been pricked by an infected needle. Uncovering a web of corporate conspiracies, Mike and Paul quickly find themselves outmatched.
Father of Invention (2010)
Definitely a movie for Kevin Spacey fans!
Netflix: Robert Axle (Kevin Spacey) is a humble, if eccentric, genius whose flair for invention catapults him to fame, fortune and insufferable egomania, until a terrible incident involving one of his creations brings him crashing back to earth and into prison. Nearly a decade later, Axle is released, and he's determined to rehabilitate his reputation and rebuild his fortune. First, he has to convince his daughter that he's worthy of a second chance,
My Name is Khan (2010) (4th Vote)
I saw two movies from India this week (via Netflix) and they were outstanding; for storyline as well as simply learning more about the Indian people. They are My Name is Khan, and Swades.
Netflix: Rizwan Khan (Shahrukh Khan), a Muslim man with Asperger syndrome, lives happily with his wife, Mandira (Kajol), in San Francisco until a tragedy drives her away after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Now he is on a quest to recapture the heart of the woman he loves. Traveling across America, Rizwan faces prejudice because of his religion and unusual behavior, but he also inspires the people he meets with his unique outlook on life.
Netflix: An Americanized NASA scientist returns to his native India on a business trip and tries to get back in touch with his roots by finding the nanny who helped raise him. His mission forces him to examine his ways and all the changes he's been through.
Sarah's Key (2010)
We loved this story, it was a very interesting slice of history. Great cast, and a touching story about difficult subject matter (a la Schindler's List) with a warm ending that makes the hard trip worth it.
Netflix: Paris, 1942: To protect her brother from the police arresting Jewish families, a young girl hides him away, promising to come back for him. Sixty-seven years later, her story intertwines with that of an American journalist investigating the roundup.
The Guard (2011)
This is a funny movie! Netflix lists it as "quirky and witty" and it is. You can never really quite tell if the local copper is joking or if he's really dim... He's not dim! We both really enjoyed it and laughed out loud a bunch.
Netflix: When tightly wound FBI agent Wendell Everett (Don Cheadle) invades an Irish village in pursuit of international drug dealers, wisecracking local copper Gerry Boyle (Brendan Gleeson) does his best to annoy the American and get on with his circumscribed life. But soon there's a murder, and Boyle finds himself swept up in detective work way beyond his pay grade. John Michael McDonagh directs this action-filled comedy.
Warrior (2011) (2nd Vote)
Oscar nominated, excellent storytelling and acting is suburb.
Netflix: Set in the violent world of mixed martial arts combat, this gritty drama follows two brothers at war with each other, who have pursued separate lives. But preparation for a championship bout soon leads the siblings back into each other's paths.
Burn After Reading (2008)
Another Coen Brothers masterpiece! Great cast - Frances McDormand, George Clooney, Brad Pitt. Frances is as always, fantastic. Brad Pitt is hilarious and George plays a really slimy fellow.
Netflix: In this darkly comic farce from Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, an ousted CIA official (John Malkovich) loses his penned memoir to a pair of moronic gym employees (Brad Pitt and Frances McDormand, in a Golden Globe-nominated role) who use it to try and turn a profit. George Clooney and Tilda Swinton round out the cast of this irreverent tale of poorly executed espionage, which also earned a Golden Globe nod for Best Picture (Comedy).
As It Is in Heaven (2005) (4th Vote)
Incredible. Starts out kind of strange, keeps you on the edge of your seat, with a very memorable ending! Both my husband and I loved it and recommend it.
Netflix: This Oscar-nominated Swedish drama tells the story of Daniel Dareus (Michael Nyqvist), a small-town boy who escaped his tiny village to become a famous conductor. A tragic mishap sends him back home in search of a fresh start, and he ends up leading the local choir. Frida Hallgren, Helen Sjoholm and Lennart Jahkel co-star in writer-director Kay Pollak's (Children's Island, Love Me!) heartwarming tale.
A documentary about a volunteer coach for a Memphis inner-city high school football team. This movie deserved an Academy award. We who are in better places sometimes forget that these inner-city kids are real and have dreams and goals. Truly a heartwarming movie, but be sure to bring some tissues.
Netflix: Cinéma vérité tackles football in this inspirational profile of an inner-city Memphis high school football team, whose downtrodden players combine with a dedicated volunteer coach in a valiant effort to reach the school's first-ever playoff game.
The Adjustment Bureau (2011) (3rd Vote)
Matt Damon and Elizabeth Blunt. Super entertaining and quite different from most romantic action thrillers. Great for sparking enlightened conversation.
Netflix: A congressman (Matt Damon) who's a rising star on the political scene finds himself entranced by a beautiful ballerina (Emily Blunt), but mysterious circumstances ensure that their love affair is predestined to be a non-starter. Screenwriter George Nolfi (The Bourne Ultimatum) makes his directorial debut with this romantic adaptation of Philip K. Dick's classic sci-fi short story "Adjustment Team."
Puss in Boots (2011)
I know, I know. A kid’s movie. But, I really liked it. Very entertaining.
IMDB: Years before meeting Shrek and Donkey, the adorable but tricky Puss in Boots must clear his name from all charges making him a wanted fugitive. While trying to steal magic beans from the infamous criminals Jack and Jill, the hero crosses paths with his female match, Kitty Softpaws, who leads Puss to his old friend, but now enemy, Humpty Dumpty. Memories of friendship and betrayal enlarges Puss' doubt, but he eventually agrees to help the egg get the magic beans. Together, the three plan to steal the beans, get to the Giant's castle, nab the golden goose, and clear Puss' name.
The Iron Lady (2011) (2nd Vote)
Really enjoyed seeing the Iron Lady and would like to mention that Meryl Streep deserved that Oscar for best female actress 100%. Would especially recommend this movie to people who have an interest in history, politics, or women’s equality issues. I predict that women would be more entertained by this film than men.
Netflix: Meryl Streep provides a subtle and nuanced portrait of Margaret Thatcher, the first female prime minister of Britain, whose political career and determination changed the rules that had limited women's opportunities for leadership.
Tower Heist (2011) (2nd Vote)
Very funny and has a great stunt sequence. Worth the price of admission.
Netflix: When a group of workers at a ritzy Manhattan condo realize their boss has swindled them out of their pensions, they vow to reap their own justice. With the cooperation of the building manager, the group devises an ingenious plot to recover the funds.
Chances Are (1989) (2 Votes)
I recently re-watched a charming 1989 movie, Chances Are. Basically, a spirit returns to Earth to a new body, with memory of his past life. He comes back into contact with his former wife and best friend, begins to remember his recent past life, and the fun ensues!
Netflix: A celestial boo-boo sends soul-in-limbo Louie Jeffries into the body of Alex Finch (Robert Downey Jr.) in this heavenly romantic comedy. Louie lies dormant until Alex starts dating Miranda (Mary Stuart Masterson) -- the daughter of Louie's widow, Corinne (Cybill Shepherd). When Louie's memories are unleashed, Emile Ardolino's film gets as complex as a Shakespearian comedy, forcing all the players to sort out the remarkable events.
2nd Vote: Awesome movie! Lots of fun when Downey Jr. starts to remember.
Hugo (2011) (5 Votes)
We loved it! Magical and beautifully made. It well deserved all of the Academy Award nominations it got.
Netflix: When his father dies, 12-year-old orphan Hugo takes up residence behind the walls of a Parisian train station. There, he meets Isabelle, the daughter of filmmaker Georges Méliès, who holds the key to Hugo's destiny.
Midnight in Paris (2011) (4th Vote)
Netflix: In this charming romantic comedy, legendary director Woody Allen focuses his lens on an engaged young couple whose experiences traveling together in Paris make them begin to question the kind of life they want to live.
The Simple Life of Noah Dearborn (1999)
Just saw this and loved it. Love Sidney Poitier.
Netflix: Small-town farmer Noah Dearborn (Sidney Poitier) lives an uncomplicated existence until shady developer Christian Nelson (George Newbern) tries to usurp his family's land. Nelson will do anything to take Noah's property, including hiring a shrink (Mary-Louise Parker) to have him declared insane. But Nelson doesn't anticipate Noah forming an unbreakable bond with the doctor, which proves stronger than anything the land baron can dish out.
In the Heat of the Night (1967)
Netflix: 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.
Another Earth (2011)
I guess this movie flew under the radar because I never heard anything about it. It is a very thoughtful and low-key production, although there are one or two very short visual surprise treats that you can miss if you blink.
Netflix: After a strange Earth-like planet is discovered, astrophysics student Rhoda accidentally slams her car into the vehicle of John, killing his family. In time, Rhoda and John begin an unlikely romance, but Rhoda begins to wonder about the other planet.
Green Fingers (2000)
We really enjoyed this one - Great cast and charming story.
Netflix: It's one big (green) thumbs-up for this affecting true-life tale about hardened con Colin Briggs (Clive Owen), a small-time criminal who gets a new lease on life -- behind prison bars -- as an award-winning gardener. Standing out in supporting roles are David Kelly as a prisoner chum of Briggs's who coaxes him out of his shell and Helen Mirren as a world-class horticulturalist who worries when her daughter falls for Briggs.
Life in a Day (2011)
Just plain interesting and really well done too!
Netflix: After thousands of people around the world joined together to record banal and remarkable everyday events on July 24, 2010, director Kevin MacDonald led a team of editors to condense more than 4,500 hours of video into this picture of life on Earth.
Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
We loved this all over again - Very highly recommended!
Netflix: After coming within one question of winning it all on the Indian version of "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?," 18-year-old Mumbai "slumdog" Jamal Malik (Dev Patel) is arrested on suspicion that he cheated his way to the top. While in custody, he regales a jaded inspector (Irfan Khan) with remarkable tales of his life on the streets and the story of the woman (Freida Pinto) he loved and lost. Danny Boyle directs this Oscar-winning Best Picture.
Immortal Beloved (1994)
One of my favorite movies - A mystery with a terrific cast and an interesting and captivating story. Of course, the music is great and Gary Oldman does a wonderful job.
Netflix: Upon Ludwig van Beethoven's death, his lifelong friend Anton Schindler sets out to learn the identity of the composer's mysterious muse after uncovering heartfelt love letters addressing her only as "immortal beloved."
Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011)
We really liked this one! It's the back story to how Planet of the Apes happened. The special effects are really well done and has a plausible story as well.
Netflix: This reboot of the Planet of the Apes franchise is a prequel set in modern-day San Francisco, where scientists are conducting genetic research on apes. The evolved primates develop advanced intelligence and revolt against being used as lab rats.
Mao's Last Dancer (2010) (6th Vote)
I want to thank everyone who recommended this film. A fabulous movie that stays with you, long after it's over. If you haven't seen it yet, I encourage you to see it.
Netflix: A delegation from Madame Mao's Beijing Dance Academy selects 11-year-old peasant villager Li Cunxin to study ballet in far-off Beijing, where he trains for seven grueling years to become one of China's greatest dancers. His efforts win him the opportunity to dance in America, opening his eyes to a new love and the possibility of a dramatic defection from China in this remarkable true story based on Cunxin's autobiography.
The Concert (2009)
At one point in the movie you might be reminded of another favorite, August Rush.
Netflix: Golden Globe-nominated as Best Foreign Language Film, this uplifting comedy follows fallen Russian maestro Andrey Filipov (Aleksey Guskov), who seizes a chance to reunite his orchestra and reclaim his life 30 years after politics cut short his music career. After intercepting an invitation sent to the Bolshoi to perform at a Paris theater, Filipov gathers a ragtag band of ex-colleagues and a French violinist (Mélanie Laurent) to realize his dream.
The Hunger Games (2012)
Well done movie and good cast. I didn't find it as fast paced as the book. But good.
Netflix: In a dystopian future ruled by a totalitarian regime, resourceful Katniss and her partner, Peeta, represent their district in the lethal Hunger Games -- a televised survival competition in which teenage contestants fight each other to the death.
The Raid: Redemption (2011)
This is definitely a movie for men, it reminded me of Chinese movies from the 1970’s. Blood and guts and high body count. What more could you ask for! And the choreography of the fight scenes, of which there were many, was fantastic.
A quote from http://www.killerreviews.com/index.php says it best: "The Raid is jam packed with some of the best action sequences we've seen in years and audiences are sure to walk away with an adrenaline rush punch to the gut that far exceeds their forked (over) entertainment dollar. Bodies on both sides of battle fall to the ground like rounds from a Gatling gun in an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie. What ensues over the course of the next 80-minutes is a rip-roarin' blast of gratuitous bloodletting. The gun battles are more intense than the bank robbery scene in Michael Mann's Heat, the apartment hallway battles make the scene in Oldboy look like a Pixar film and the cops are as overmatched as U.S. Army Rangers were against an entire Somalian town Black Hawk Down."
The Avengers (2012)
Frankly there are some comic movies I just don't care for. This wasn't one of them. Remarkable movie. This is one of the best I have seen. Tons of action, great acting, funny, awesome! Fun for kids and fun for adults.
Netflix: An all-star lineup of superheroes -- including Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk and Captain America -- team up to save the world from certain doom. Working under the authority of S.H.I.E.L.D., can our heroes keep the planet at peace?
Disney's 50th Animated Feature Film! I found out after seeing this movie, that at $260 million (and six years in the making), it was the most expensive animated film produced to date! Originally titled "Rapunzel," this movie is a fantastic journey into a very special universe, a universe that combines a great story, heartfelt acting, breathtaking animation and CGI, and a cinematic flair usually found in expensive live-action features. The director was purposely looking for a non-photo realistic look, more like a painting, and he achieved that goal--all the way down to the nearly endless hair of the main character. You will fall in love with "Tangled" and you will want others to have that same experience.
Awesome movie. True story and cameo of main character.
Netflix: When Penny Chenery (Diane Lane) agrees to take over her ailing father's thoroughbred stable, she transforms from housewife to horse breeder -- and owner of the colt that will take the 1973 Triple Crown -- in this dramatic biopic. The film explores Chenery's bond with "Big Red" and depicts her rise to greatness as the "first lady of racing." John Malkovich plays trainer Lucien Laurin, and Fred Dalton Thompson co-stars as big-shot breeder Bull Hancock.
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011)
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel was an adorable movie! (In fairness though, I should mention that I have a pre-existing affinity for India because my daughter attended college there). Every challenge that could possibly beset older folks was in this movie, depicted with a healthy dose of humor. Many wonderful old British actors & actresses starred in the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, including Judy Dench and other famous names. It also starred Dev Patel, of Slum Dog Millionaire fame. We thoroughly enjoyed this movie and highly recommend it, especially to older adults!
IMDB: British retirees travel to India to take up residence in what they believe is a newly restored hotel. Less luxurious than its advertisements, the Marigold Hotel nevertheless slowly begins to charm in unexpected ways.
MGM: When the Lion Roars (2008)
For all the movie buffs, I recommend the brilliant documentary of MGM studio's formation, growth and expansion from its early silent movie Hollywood days into its glorious golden era of musicals etc... great footage and interviews...I think you will love it.
Netflix: MGM at the height of its success claimed to have "more stars than there are in the heavens." Stuffed with film clips, interviews and behind-the-scenes footage and lore, the film features appearances by Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Judy Garland, Spencer Tracy, Gene Kelly and many others.
Real Steel (2011)
This is a feel good, father-son, underdog movie - we really enjoyed it!
Netflix: In a future world where flesh-and-blood boxers have been replaced by towering mechanized fighters, pugilist-turned-promoter Charlie Kenton reconnects with his estranged son, Max, to convert a discarded machine into a World Robot Boxing contender.
The Help (2011) (2nd Vote)
We loved it!
Netflix: In 1960s Jackson, Miss., aspiring writer Eugenia Phelan crosses taboo racial lines by conversing with Aibileen Clark about her life as a housekeeper, and their ensuing friendship upsets the fragile dynamic between the haves and the have-nots. When other long-silent black servants begin opening up to Eugenia, the disapproving conservative Southern town soon gets swept up in the turbulence of changing times.
Jack Black, Shirley MacLaine and Matthew McConaughey. It is a little bit slow, but a great story and good laughs. It is based on a true story which made it even more interesting. Many people in the movie are actually residents of the town. And frankly, by the time he kills the widow you are wondering what took him so long!
IMDB: In small-town Texas, the local mortician strikes up a friendship with a wealthy widow, though when he kills her, he goes to great lengths to create the illusion that she's alive.
The Double (2011)
This was an incredibly exciting movie! Edge of the seat with twists and turns. Loved it. With Richard Geer and Martin Sheen. Topher Grace (who I was not familiar with) did a great job as Geer's partner.
IMDB: A retired CIA operative is paired with a young FBI agent to unravel the mystery of a senator's murder, with all signs pointing to a Soviet assassin.
A French movie about a poor woman painter in the early 1900s from a small village in France. Fantastic movie.
Netflix: Awestruck by the vibrant and imaginative artwork of uneducated housekeeper Séraphine Louis (Yolande Moreau) -- who spends her days doing menial chores -- German art critic Wilhelm Unde (Ulrich Tukur) takes the promising painter under his wing. Though her neighbors and others dismiss Séraphine's work, Unde is determined to turn the obscure French artist into a star in this revelatory biopic also starring Geneviève Mnich and Nico Rogner.
The Legend is Born: Ip Man (2010)
Netflix: This martial arts biopic follows the early years of Ip Man -- the master who would one day become Bruce Lee's mentor -- as he perfects his Wing Chun style of combat against a small army of villainous foes.
Frankie & Johnny (1991)
Netflix: Divorced ex-con Johnny (Al Pacino) becomes a cook at a Manhattan café, where he falls in love with Frankie (Michelle Pfeiffer), a beautiful waitress with a painful past. Despite the fact that she wants nothing to do with him, Johnny does everything he can to win Frankie's heart. Based on a play by Terrence McNally, director Garry Marshall's touching romantic comedy co-stars Hector Elizondo, Kate Nelligan and Nathan Lane.
The Thirteenth Floor (1999)
Interesting SciFi flick!
Netflix: Two scientists have created a virtual reality 1930s Los Angeles so true-to-life that the occupants don't know they exist only in a computer chip -- until a homicide connects the parallel worlds of the simulated and the creators.
Another old one with Gene Hackman. Great movie!
Netflix: High school basketball is king in small-town Indiana, and the 1954 Hickory Huskers are all hope and no talent. But their new coach -- abrasive, unlikable Norman Dale -- whips the team into shape ... while also inciting controversy.
And now, a snippet (25) of the
Top 250 movies as voted by IMDB users!
To see the entire list, click here: http://www.imdb.com/chart/top. The number before the title is the ranking and the number after the date is the number of votes.
1. 9.2 The Shawshank Redemption (1994) 739,962
2. 9.2 The Godfather (1972) 552,666
3. 9.0 The Godfather: Part II (1974) 348,652
4. 8.9 Pulp Fiction (1994) 582,066
5. 8.9 The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) 231,075
6. 8.9 12 Angry Men (1957) 181,586
7. 8.9 Schindler's List (1993) 389,101
8. 8.8 The Dark Knight (2008) 674,917
9. 8.8 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) 520,526
10. 8.8 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) 312,586
11. 8.8 Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) 376,937
12. 8.8 Fight Club (1999) 560,900 13. 8.8 Seven Samurai (1954) 126,328
14. 8.8 Inception (2010) 529,900
15. 8.7 The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) 542,362
16. 8.7 Goodfellas (1990) 329,320
17. 8.7 Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) 424,174
18. 8.7 City of God (2002) 244,943
19. 8.7 Casablanca (1942) 215,427
20. 8.7 The Matrix (1999) 539,420
21. 8.7 Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) 105,709
22. 8.7 Rear Window (1954) 159,719
23. 8.7 Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) 324,786
24. 8.6 The Silence of the Lambs (1991) 358,160
25. 8.6 The Usual Suspects (1995) 358,798
TV Series Recommendations on DVD/Streaming:
Mad Men (2007-2012), Seasons 1-5
I loved Mad Men. It is my age-group. I was in advertising back in the 70s and I loved it.
IMDB: A drama about one of New York's most prestigious ad agencies at the beginning of the 1960s, focusing on one of the firm's most mysterious but extremely talented ad executives, Donald Draper.
Once Upon a Time (2011)
Netflix: Jennifer Morrison, Ginnifer Goodwin and Robert Carlyle star in this fantastical series that follows the travails of a young woman who is drawn to a small Maine town and discovers that it's filled with the mystical elements of the fairy tale world.
I recommend the USA show Psych! Some folks might not watch it because of its name, but it is a comedy and mystery series. The main character is skilled at observation but pulls it off as being psychic. It is really funny, I laugh out loud almost every time I watch it. The older seasons are showing on ION channel and I think a couple others.
Netflix: Having honed his powers of deduction by observing his police officer dad, Shawn Spencer (James Roday) appears to possess a nearly supernatural gift for crime-solving -- so much so that the police begin employing his services as a psychic. After opening up a detective agency with his best friend (Dulé Hill), Spencer finds that his sleuthing skills, though advanced, don't exactly keep him out of trouble in this comedic mystery series.
Downton Abbey (2010-2011) Season 1 (2nd Vote)
DOWNTON ABBEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (BBC mini-series)
It's a deliciously decadent English period piece. Pretty people, incredible costumes, sets, homes, and reels you in to the vortex, and you won't want out!
Netflix: Exposing the snobbery, backbiting and machinations of a disappearing class system, this series chronicles the comings and goings of the upper-crust Crawley family and their assorted servants.
Alias (TV, 2001-2005)
Netflix: Created by J.J. Abrams, this action-packed spy series made a star of lithe leading lady Jennifer Garner, who redefined armed and dangerous as double agent Sydney Bristow, a CIA operative whose mission is to destroy a global crime syndicate.
24 (TV, 2001-2010)
Netflix: Each season of this Emmy-winning action thriller follows 24 hours in the life of Jack Bauer, a special agent who works for the government thwarting terrorist attacks and other threats to national security as he struggles with his own inner demons.
Larkrise to Candleford (2008-2011)
I highly recommend! Wonderful characterizations.
Netflix: In this BBC costume drama, country girl Laura Timmins (Olivia Hallinan) leaves her home of Lark Rise to join her cousin, Dorcas Lane (Julia Sawalha), in bustling Candleford, where her position at the post office plants her in the thick of town activity. Lively postmistress Dorcas welcomes her apprentice, but the residents grumble at the rates, and the husband of Mrs. Macey (Claire Skinner) escapes from prison, which may force her to leave.
Prison Break (TV Series 2005-2008)
Seriously, this is the worst title ever! We really enjoyed this series (it's addictive). It's very well thought out, well cast, well scripted, interesting and has good action/drama. There are characters you love to hate who then do something that makes you wonder if they really are so terrible...
Netflix: When his brother, Lincoln, is wrongly convicted of murdering the brother of a powerful politician, engineer Michael Scofield resolves to bust his innocent sibling out of the notorious Fox River Penitentiary in this intense action-drama series.
That's all for this edition!
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