We just passed Daylight savings and with holidays coming up that means it is everyone favorite part of the calendar: seasonal depression time (and your boy is the poster child). I miss my hot summer days and long summer nights, but unless one of you is moving me to San Diego soon we are in for some cold, wet snowy months together.
Watching movies helps me get through this time of year, so I decided to make a mood enhancer movie list. I have seen all of these, some multiple times. A fun thing about having a goldfish memory like mine is that you don’t remember a lot of the plot points, which is why I prefer movies over TV shows. TV shows have too many threads to follow, whereas with movies you can just remember the vibe it gave and how it made you feel after you finished it. As with any Ted Flint writing, do not take plot points and movie synopsis to heart because I am sure I am forgetting a lot. Just trust Uncle Ted when he says these movies will leave you with a smile on your face.
The Way Way Back
My all-time favorite summer movie involves a preteen Duncan who spends a summer at a season town with his mom and her new boyfriend (played by a perfect Steve Carell). This might be Sam Rockwell’s best role. Not sure why I am putting it on a winter “take away the sadness list” as I watch this every 4th of July, but its my article and I do what I want.
Everybody Wants Some!!
The movie Dazed and Confused wishes it was. Set in the weekend before school starts at a small Texas college with a new baseball player hanging with the new team over three days. Perfect hang movie. No drama just laughs, great music, and good vibes.
I’ve only seen this once but look forward to revisiting it this winter. I watched this flick on a really bad night last year and it completely turned it around. Jon Favreau is a famous chef who has a meltdown and decides to drive cross country with his son and John Leguizamo in a food truck. Just an absolute delight all around. Jon Favreau should act in more stuff instead of being knee deep in Star Wars with Disney but I am sure they are paying him well. (Editor’s note: I like this movie but Favreau casting Scarlett Johannson and Sofia Vergara as his love interests while directing and staring in the movie is elite Hollywood nonsense.)
The Peanut Butter Falcon
I don’t know where you all fall on Shia LeBeauf but I will watch anything that crazy bastard is in, and this might be his best role. He plays a lobster fisherman on the run from people he owes money. He runs into a disabled young man who has escaped an old folks home so he can attend a pro wrestling school in Florida. Yes that is a sentence I just typed. A modern day Huck Finn without all the racism. Just an absolute delight and will have you smiling the whole damn time.
The Tender Bar
Ben Affleck’s best role of the last 10 years, don’t debate me. He plays the uncle who runs a bar, helping his young nephew our main character (yes yes I know what a stupid fucking stereotype). This is a coming of age movie based on a true story with a wonderful Christopher Lloyd performance. And don’t sleep on Tye Sheridan’s performance as JR in this. I don’t care how much of this story isn’t true when fact checked; it’s a little cheesy but also has some deep moments which make it an extremely “me” movie.
Tell me if you have heard this one: a famous up and coming hot shot crashes in a small town where he learns to love it more than the big city. No I am not talking about “Cars”, I am talking about Doc Hollywood. Man, I fucking miss Michael J Fox. This one might lean into the romantic comedy side of things and depending on what you are trying to escape might not be for you. But I really loved it. Not to sound like an old man but they don’t make movies like this anymore.
The Nice Guys
Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling in a movie written and directed by Shane Black, what more do you need? Two Private investigators are forced to team up to solve a murder while also dealing with one of their daughters helping out. An absolute gem of a movie.
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
You know what screw it, lets add another Shane Black movie. This one is the movie that got Robert Downey Jr back on the map with maybe one of the best late period Val Kilmer performances. Downey plays a crook who pretends to be an actor who researching for a role as a private investigator. Also this is an underrated “Christmas in LA” movie. Maybe watch with captions because there are some AMAZING one liners in this one.
I am a sucker for coming of age movies if it wasn’t obvious. This is movie has everything to put me in my feels before making me smile at the end. “Mud” stars Mathew McConaughey before he really his rebound in the last 10 years. He plays a mysterious loner on an island running from bad people while a young boy deals with rough family issues and an unresolved romance. This one also put Tye Sheridan on my radar. Just inject this shit into my brain.
Just trust Uncle Ted when he tells you these movies will make you smile. Remember fam we are all Great White Sharks, and great white sharks die if they stop moving and they can’t swim backwards. So remember–always forward never backwards. The spring will be here soon.