Winter break 2021 movies Guide

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LBCC Library Winter Break Movie Club
All the movies on this page have been recommended by LBCC faculty teaching Film Studies, Writing, and Humanities as well as LBCC Librarians and are available for free streaming to any member of the LBCC community from the Library's Academic Videos Online streaming service. After you watch a movie, feel free to leave a review for others. There's a movie for every day of the Winter break, so stay home and enjoy!

Problems logging in or streaming? Contact Bryan Miyagishima at miyagib@linnbenton.edu

NOTE: These recommendations are aimed at college-age students and may not be family-friendly!
The LBCC Library recommends ...
John Lewis, Good Trouble (2020)

John Lewis Good Trouble posterAn intimate account of legendary U.S. Representative John Lewis’ life, legacy and more than 60 years of extraordinary activism. After Lewis petitioned Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to help integrate a segregated school in his hometown of Troy, Alabama, King sent “the boy from Troy” a round trip bus ticket to meet with him. From that meeting onward, Lewis became one of King’s closest allies. He organized Freedom Rides that left him bloodied or jailed, and stood at the front lines in the historic marches on Washington and Selma. He never lost the spirit of the “boy from Troy” and called on his fellow Americans to get into “good trouble” until his passing on July 17, 2020.

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Joyeux Noël (2006)

Inspired by a true story which happened Christmas Eve 1914 during the World War I in many different places of the battlefront. During this Christmas Eve, the unthinkable will happen: rifles will be left at the bottom of the trenches to go to see those opposite, shake their hands, exchange a cigarette and a piece of chocolate, and wish them 'Merry Christmas!'...

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Whale Rider (2002)

Whale Rider posterA small Maori village faces a crisis when the heir to the leadership of the Ngati Konohi dies at birth and is survived only by his twin sister, Pai (Academy Award® nominee* Keisha Castle-Hughes). Although disregarded by her grandfather and shunned by the people of her village, twelve-year-old Pai remains certain of her calling and trains herself in the ways and customs of her people. With remarkable grace and courage, Pai summons the strength to both challenge and embrace a thousand years of tradition in order to fulfill her destiny.

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Film Studies faculty Stephen Rust recommends ...

Persepolis (2007)

Persepolis posterWriter and director Marjane Satrapi draws a poignant story about a young girl in Iran during the Islamic Revolution, when people's hopes were dashed as fundamentalists took power.


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The Lives of Others (2006)

Before the collapse of the Berlin Wall, East Germany's population was closely monitored by the State Secret Police (Stasi). Only a few citizens above suspicion, like renowned pro-Socialist playwright Georg Dreyman, were permitted to lead private lives. But when a corrupt government official falls for Georg's stunning actress-girlfriend, Christa, an ambitious Stasi policeman is ordered to bug the writer's apartment to gain incriminating evidence against the rival. Now, what the officer discovers is about to dramatically change their lives - as well as his ...

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House of Flying Daggers (2004)

House of Flying Daggers posterMei is an exotic, beautiful blind dancer, associated with a dangerous revolutionary gang, known as the House of Flying Daggers. Captured by officers of the decadent Tang Dynasty, Mei finds herself both threatened - and attracted - to the most unusual circumstances. Here, her heart and loyalties battle each other, amid warriors in the treetops and dazzling combat - the likes of which have never before been seen!

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Wadjda (2012)

Wajdja poster10-year-old Wadjda challenges deep-rooted Saudi traditions in a determined quest to buy a bicycle. When everything goes against her plans, she sees one last chance in her school's Quran recitation competition and the large cash prize for first place.

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Paprika (2006)

Paprika PosterPrepare to enter the realm of fantasy and imagination -- where reality and dreams collide in a kaleidoscopic mindscape of sheer visual genius. The magical tale centers on a revolutionary machine that allows scientists to enter and record a subject's dream. After being stolen, a fearless detective and brilliant therapist join forces to recover the device -- before it falls into the hands of a "dream terrorist" in this gripping anime thriller from acclaimed director Satoshi Kon.

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Film Studies faculty Matt Usner recommends ...
Toni Erdmann (2016)

Winfried rarely sees Ines since she left for a high-powered corporate job. So when he drops by to visit, the two quickly find themselves at odds as his quirky antics clash with her slick lifestyle. Determined to be part of her world, Winfried reappears as alter ego “Toni Erdmann,” an outrageous life coach who turns his daughter’s career plans upside-down. In the course of all the madness, the two discover that maybe they have more in common than they imagined.

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Searching for Sugarman (2012)

Searching for Sugarman posterThe incredible true story of Rodriguez, the greatest ‘70s rock icon who never was. After being discovered in a Detroit bar, Rodriguez’s sound struck 2 renowned producers and they signed a recording deal. But when the album bombed, the singer disappeared into obscurity. A bootleg recording found its way into apartheid South Africa and over the next two decades, he became a phenomenon. The film follows the story of two South African fans who set out to find out what really happened to their hero.

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The Celluloid Closet (1996)

Celluloid Closet posterThe Celluloid Closet explodes sexual myths and explores how our attitudes about homosexuality and sex roles have evolved through the century. With clips from over 100 Hollywood movies and interviews with many of the filmmakers and actors who created them (including Tom Hanks, Shirley MacLaine, Susan Sarandon, Whoopi Goldberg, Tony Curtis, and Gore Vidal), The Celluloid Closet is an epic story -- by turns surprising, hilarious, and disturbing.

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The Devil's Backbone (2001)

The Devil's Backbone posterHis father killed in the brutal fighting of the Spanish Civil War, ten-year-old Carlos is sent to live at the desolate Santa Lucia School, now a makeshift shelter for war orphans. Soon after his arrival, Carlos has a series of seemingly supernatural encounters: strange shadows, voices and, most frightening of all, the apparition of a brutalized young boy. Turns out that Carlos is not alone in seeing these strange phenomena, many other children have experienced the 'One Who Sighs,' as the entity has come to be called. A classic ghost story, haunting as it is moving, 'The Devil's Backbone' is also a subtle allegory for the war that rages on just beyond the school's walls.

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Humanities faculty David Bockoven and Robert Harrison recommend ...
Thumbsucker (2005)

Thumbsucker posterIn the strange land known as suburbia, introverted adolescent Justin spends the majority of his life pining after his attractive classmate Rebecca and nervously sucking his thumb when he's alone. Oddly, after receiving some New Age advice from his spacey orthodontist, Perry  -- and a helpful dose of prescription pills -- Justin becomes the outspoken star of his school's debate club. His extroverted persona, however, causes an all-new set of problems.

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The Triplets of Belleville (2003)

Triplets of Belleville posterThis animated film follows elderly Frenchwoman Madame Souza as she becomes involved in international intrigue when her grandson, Champion, a professional cyclist, is kidnapped and taken abroad. Joined by her faithful dog, Bruno, Souza embarks on a journey to find Champion, and stumbles across unlikely allies in the form of three sisters who are veterans of the vaudeville stage. Tracking down Champion's criminal captors, the quartet of old women use their wits to try and win the day.

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Reel Injun (2009)

[This links to the Canadian Broadcasting version of the movie - hence the different title and subtitles]
Cree filmmaker Neil Diamond takes an entertaining and insightful look at the portrayal of North American Indigenous people throughout a century of cinema. Featuring hundreds of clips from old classics as well as recent releases, the film traces the evolution of the 'Hollywood Indian.' Diamond guides the audience on a journey across America to some of cinema's most iconic landscapes and conducts candid interviews with celebrities like Clint Eastwood, Robbie Robertson and Jim Jarmusch. The film is a loving look at cinema through the eyes of the people who appeared in its very first flickering images and have survived to tell their stories in their own way.

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Film Studies faculty Chris Riseley recommends ...
The City of Lost Children (1995)

City of Lost Children posterA gusty little girl and a sentimental strongman (Ron Perlman) join hearts and hands to save a small boy's dreams from a madman's master plan. From Jean-Pierre Jeunet, the director of AMÉLIE and DELICATESSEN, celebrate the 20th Anniversary of this fantastically twisted fairy tale, chock-full of curious characters, spectacular stunts and unforgettable visuals.

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Synecdoche, New York (2008)

Synecdoche New York posterLife is looking pretty bleak for theater director Caden Cotard (Philip Seymour Hoffman). His wife and daughter have left him, his therapist is more interested in plugging her new book than helping him with his problems, and a strange disease is causing his body to shut down. Caden leaves his home in Schenectady, New York, and heads to New York City, where he gathers a cast of actors and tells them to live their lives within the constructs of a mock-up of the city.

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Film Studies faculty Lee Keeler recommends ...
The Rider (2017)

After a tragic riding accident, young cowboy Brady (Brady Jandreau), once a rising star of the rodeo circuit, is warned that his competition days are over. Back home, Brady finds himself wondering what he has to live for when he can no longer do what gives him a sense of purpose: to ride and compete. in an attempt to regain control of his fate, Brady undertakes a search for new identity and tries to redefine his idea of what it means to be a man in the heartland of America.

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Good Bye Lenin! (2004)

October, 1989 was a bad time to fall into a coma if you lived in East Germany - and this is precisely what happens to Alex's proudly socialist mother. Alex has big problems on his hands when she suddenly awakens eight months later. Her heart is so weak that any shock might kill her. And what could be more shocking than the fall of the Berlin Wall and the triumph of capitalism in her beloved East Germany? To save his mother, Alex transforms the family apartment into an island of the past, a kind of socialist-era museum where his mother is lovingly duped into believing that nothing has changed. What begins as a little white lie turns into a major scam as Alex's sister and selected neighbors are recruited to maintain the elaborate ruse - and keep her believing that Lenin really did win after all.

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American Movie (1999)

With the help of his mother, his 82-year old uncle, and local cast of hilarious and lovable characters, filmmaker Mark Borchardt fights his way through internal and external roadblocks to achieve his goal - to make his movie, his way. AMERICAN MOVIE is the story of filmmaker Mark Borchardt, his mission, and his dream.

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The Raid: Redemption (2012)

As a rookie member of an elite special-forces team, Rama (Iko Uwais) is instructed to hang back during a covert mission involving the extraction of a brutal crime lord from a rundown fifteen-story apartment block. But when a spotter blows their cover, boss Tama (Ray Sahetaphy) offers lifelong sanctuary to every killer, gangster and thief in the building in exchange for their heads. Now Rama must stand in for the team’s fallen leader Jaka (Joe Taslim) and use every bit of his fighting strength – winding through every floor and room to complete the mission and escape with his life.

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Welcome to the Dollhouse (1996)

'Welcome to the Dollhouse' is a stark suburban comedy about 11-year-old Dawn Wiener, a middle child in middle school in the middle of New Jersey. Sometimes hated, often reviled, seldom understood, Dawn tries in vain to put on a happy and friendly face as she struggles through the onset of what looks to be a long puberty. Life is generally grim, she sees, and sometimes it only gets grimmer. Nevertheless, she does find moments of grace amidst the pain and humiliation of her first series of frustrated love affairs, and soon begins to wonder if life might not be better outside New Jersey.

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