Check it Out! The New, The Classic, The Obscure – The Wonderful World of Rentals

Alex Barker

1. 42 – This film was a springtime treat, bringing a sincerely told story of one of America’s great baseball players, Jackie Robinson. The film follows along his struggle not only as the first black ballplayer in the Major Leagues, but also provides a well-paced narrative as to how one man achieves greatness with both self-determination and the relentless encouragement from those around him. Props for Warner Bros in choosing relatively unknown Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson. He exudes both physicality and venerability as Jackie, giving us a better look into one of America’s great citizens of the 20th century. Harrison Ford is excellent as scene-chewing Brooklyn Dodger executive Branch Rickey. Boseman and Ford’s interactions together are quite enjoyable.

iTunes – $3.99 Rent

Google Play – $3.99 Rent

2. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – One of three films to win the big five at the Oscars (can you name the other two?), Jack Nicholson’s performance, along with the other actors in the state mental hospital, is worth the price alone. You’ll laugh and cry along with the lovable yet mischievous antics of the residents of the hospital. You’ll shake your fist in rage at the injustice, and you’ll cheer when courage and hope breakthrough. This is a film that continues to improve with age, and was a film to jumpstart several careers for well-known actors. (Christopher Lloyd and Danny DeVito anyone?)

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iTunes – $2.99 Rent

Google Play – $1.99 Rent

3. Iron Giant – One of the three films to wonderfully immerse 3D and 2D animation in 1999 (along with Tarzan and The Prince of Egypt), this Brad Bird directed pic is one of the better animated films in the past three decades. With both powerful themes of love and sacrifice, Iron Giant accomplishes these ideas in a way that most live action films would only hope to dream of. Roger Ebert said when it was released that the characters had such vibrance and life to them that you’ll likely forget this is animated. An excellent family film that can be watched with or without the kids.

iTunes – $2.99 Rent

Google Play – $1.99 Rent

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