Monsters vs. Aliens (2009)

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A woman transformed into a giant after she is struck by a meteorite on her wedding day becomes part of a team of monsters sent in by the U.S. government to defeat an alien mastermind trying to take over Earth. (IMDb)
You can see it coming from a mile away thanks to the douchey Derek, but the character arc for Susan is a nice one (“I’m not going to shortchange myself ever again!”), adding substance to the bare-bones plot, while appreciably not feeling the need to pair her off with someone else at the end. A great gaggle of quirky secondary characters, meanwhile, keep the chuckles coming quite consistently (Rogen’s dimwitted blob monster is a standout: “I think that jello gave me a fake phone number”).
7/10 (Good)

Flatliners (1990)

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Four Medical students experiment on “near death” experiences that involve past tragedies until the dark consequences begin to jeopardize their lives. (IMDb)
The main cast is excellent here as five ambitious medical students attempting to experience life after death. Tense medical drama blends with nightmarish scenes of memories and hallucinations as side effects are revealed, creating a powerful sense of discomfort aided by gloomy cinematography, while the emotional quests for resolve that follow add yet another dimension to the film. Puzzlingly, Joe’s story is left hanging, but the film remains a great, unsettling thriller with a cohesive feel.
7.5/10 (Really Good)

 

Stand By Me (1986)

After the death of a friend, a writer recounts a boyhood journey to find the body of a missing boy. (IMDb)
A gorgeous nostalgia-drenched boyhood adventure tale that’s more than just loveable characters, slapstick mishaps, and funny one-liners: A remarkable young cast (with a strong supporting turn by a greasy Sutherland) delivering effortlessly natural performances (their retro middle-school banter is golden) brings to life a superb script that puts childhood wonder and imagination next to the adult themes of death and tragedy to create a truly authentic and affecting adolescent character study.
8/10 (Great)