Sunday, February 21, 2010

Top Five Underrated Genre Gems pt. 2

Back in November I wrote about five genre films that may not have been box office smashes, but definitely deserved a second look. Today I'm going to continue the list into genre flicks you might not have got around to, but should seek out if you have the time or interest.

So here we go - Bookmonkey's next top five overlooked genre gems (including a couple TV shows):

This Canadian Fantasy series asks a very simple question, if you could go back in time and change any regrets in your own life - what would you change? The story follows a 32-year-old Canadian girl named Erica Strange who has in many ways hit a massive wall in her life, professionally, personally, emotionally, you name it. Then one day she meets a therapist called Dr. Tom who takes her on as a client and begins the process of changing her life, one regret at a time. This show hit all the marks for me as Erica is my age and from my country, so all of the music, hair styles and events from her past were things I could remember myself. The show is at turns funny and heart breaking, and if you haven't seen it yet, go check it out.

If, like me you've just spent the last few months watching Heroes vs. the Carnival, you may feel burned out on the idea of Carnival-folk with special powers. Let me say, however, that HBO's Carnivale is very different; set in the Great Depression, the show follows two men, a farm boy and a preacher who are destined to fight for the fate of the world's magic, both light and dark - the interesting thing is, the show does a great job of not exactly pinning down which guy is good, and which is evil.

I'm a big Robert Rodriguez fan, I love everything from the Desperado movies to the Spy Kids flicks, but I've always had a special spot for one of his earlier films. The Faculty mixes an Invasion of the Pod People story with high school, students vs. teachers and goes to some pretty freaky levels. It is definitely a horror film (so be wary if you thinking of showing it to kids), but is also incredibly fun.

As a Library Technician myself (I'm slowly but surely making my way to my Master's Degree), I would not be doing my job if I didn't point you towards this series of films. The concept is simple, what if there were a librarian whose job it was to house all the great mythological treasures of the world, and what would he do if something were stolen. Think a B-Grade Indiana Jones and you've got the idea. The characters are all very fun and if you've ever wonder what Bob Newhart would look like kicking butt, you might want to check this series of films out.

Last year, Director Danny Boyle got international acclaim with the film Slumdog Millionaire. The movie (if you havne't seen it) is really wonderful, but for genre fans, his big break was probably 28 Days Later; which in a lot of ways revitalized the Zombie and Post-apocalyptic sub-genres of Horror. In 2007 he directed the Science Fiction film Sunshine, about a crew of astronauts working to re-ignite a dying sun. The film is really fun, and it has some nice meetings between the SF and Horror genres.

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