Here are some more quality flicks that passed under a lot of folks' radar. Put them on your Netflix queue.
I said, PUT THEM ON YOUR NETFLIX QUEUE.
*receives check for $1.27 from Netflix*
They Live (1988)
John Carpenter's anti-establishment romp features everything that makes a John Carpenter film great. Balls-out storytelling, testosterone-fueled characters, un-apologetic violence. Set during an economic depression, a drifter stumbles on to a group of rebels who have discovered that the rich and powerful are actually aliens or their willing collaborators. Wearing special sunglasses enables one to see them for what they are. Even if you're a heartless capitalist like me, you can't help but be engaged and entertained. The film also features the best, and most realistic fistfight in movie history, a 3 minute, slugfest between Roddy Piper and Keith David. This is also where the phrase "I have come here to kick ass and chew bubble gum.... and I'm all out of gum." originated.
By Dawn's Early Light (1990)
Sneaking in at the end of the Cold War, By Dawn's Early Light marks the end of the age of World War III movies. A "Fail-Safe" for the 1990's, it relates the story of an accidental nuclear exchange between the U.S. and Soviet Union from the perspective of a B-52 crew (Curly Bill and Karl Pilkington's favorite actress), the President (Maxwell Smart), and his successor (the Dad from A Christmas Story) who assumes command following the president's presumed death. The performances are not exactly stellar, but the story is compelling, and for fans of the genre, or merely those who grew up with the spectre of global thermonuclear war, it's definitely worth seeing. Rip Torn, James Earl Jones, and Jeffrey Demunn also appear.
Tears of the Sun
A story of villagers trying to escape brutality in Africa, staring white people. Fortunately, Bruce Willis manages a subdued performance, letting us identify more with the Africans than himself. It's an exciting escape movie with some good moral quandries thrown in. Also stars Monica Bellucci in a loose tanktop. I also appreciate this film for portraying U.S. special forces in an unglamorized, realistic, and professional light.
The People vs. Larry Flint (1996)
Woody Harrelson, Edward Norton, and even Courtney Love give fantastic performances in the story of porn-king Larry Flint's rise to success and battles with local, federal, and religious forces trying to shut him down. A powerful and amusing statement for freedom of speech. Also stars James Cromwell and Crispin Glover.