With everything that is happening in the world – from local political gaffes to a global pandemic, we’re left with a lot of things to think about while on community quarantine. Aside from medical implications of COVID-19, we found ourselves thinking about how we can make the world a better place after we put an end to the growing deaths brought by the virus. However, the news is just too painful to watch so we sometimes tend to seek comfort in movies which have storylines that are far from reality but somehow mirror society.
For those who want to watch films that will leave you with a lot of “what if?” questions in mind and give you feelings – may that be rage or hopefulness, here’s a list that we recently watched (and re-watched) that is worth sharing:
1.The Platform (2020)
A Netflix film that recently topped the most-watched list on the platform. A social allegory about mankind and how far people will go to fight for equality if they’re not on the low levels of society. It can serve as a wake-up call for people who remain apathetic about issues that do not directly involve them.
2. Snowpiercer (2014)
Somehow like The Platform, but with more action and in train form. Snowpiercer gives us a crazy depiction of class divisions and how revolutions spark. The last few minutes got me thinking about the necessity of having upper and lower classes in society. Listen closely as characters share the two sides of the coin about this topic.
3. Circle (2015)
Production and story is very simple, not a lot of action but I can’t help but continue watching as I also try to judge which character I would probably vote for to be zapped. I didn’t like the ending but it’s a good self-check of internalized homophobia, racism, and the like.
4. Parasite (2019)
I’ve referenced this movie a lot of times in my posts already, but if you haven’t watched it yet, I highly recommend that you do so. Not the usual rich vs poor plot, but nonetheless, an interesting depiction of class struggle. The trailer does not give away a lot so don’t judge it based on the 2-minute trailer.
5. Stanford Prison Experiment (2015)
The crushing part? This is based on a real-life social experiment that got as ugly as it was in the movie. The study was funded by the US government to understand the effects of roles and labels in a simulated environment. People doing a role-play can get this far, how much worse can the situation get for actual guards and prisoners? If you want to know more about this experiment after watching the movie, you can visit prisonexp.org.
6. Get Out (2017)
Another Jordan Peele movie that had me on the edge of my seat. A savage representation of what people of color go through in life and how wealthy people can easily get what they want. The trailer already says much so I’ll let it explain for itself.
7. On The Job (2013)
You know what’s enraging about this film? It’s the idea that this may still be continuously happening in the Philippines. The plot was based on the real-life story of an ex-con in the country who was hired by politicians to conduct hits. I’m relieved that Philippine cinema was able to produce a gem like this.
8. Okja (2017)
I like calling this a “blessing for the vegetarians”. One man’s friend can instantly turn into another man’s lunch. It’s a reflection of how f*cked up some business practices can be just so humans’ insatiable hunger for meat can be addressed while corporations make a huge profit from it. Okja is available on Netflix, in case you haven’t watched it yet.
9. Battle Royale (2000)
A cult favorite, way before the Hunger Games became a big hit! In my opinion, this has influenced a lot of things in 21st century pop culture. I still find myself thinking about this movie as I watch movies, see theater plays, and even play mobile games with a similar theme. At the end of the day, how much are we willing to sacrifice when it boils down to “survival of the fittest”?
10. Miracle in Cell No. 7 (2013)
Despite a lot of adaptations, I highly recommend you to watch the original Korean film. It’s a mix of comedy and drama but it may still leave you heart-broken (and crying). It not only puts the unfair justice system in the spotlight, it also makes you question how much you’re willing to risk for the sake of your family members.
And since we’re already questioning things, would highly recommend that you also watch Les Miserables (2012) and The Kingmaker (2019). These two are based on history and I’m 100% sure that you will FEEL THINGS while watching. The latter is on a whole new level, though. It’s a documentary, so you’ll get to hear accounts from real-life people who have experienced what life was like during the reign of Marcos in the Philippines. We’ll leave the judging to you. 🙂