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Movies That Deserve More

Sometimes a movie comes and goes without causing a single blip on the radar, sometimes despite a sizeable marketing campaign a movie fails to draw an audience, and sometimes, just sometimes these movies are better than the summers blockbuster or the Oscar winning masterpiece.
This is my first article for Earths Mightiest so I hope you like it.

Here are a handful of titles I personally believe ALL movie fans should see, if not own. This is not my “favourite movies of all time” list, you may or may not have heard of these, you may even have seen them already. What these movies are, are underachievers. Some have very high critical acclaim but all these titles have one thing in common and that is the fact not enough people have seen them!

American History X

Directed by :
Tony Kaye

Starring :
Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly D’Angelo, Avery Brooks.

Synopsis :
Derek Vinyard returns from prison to find his younger brother, Danny, caught in the same web of racism and hatred that landed him in prison. After Derek's father is killed in the line of duty by a minority, Derek's view of mankind is altered, but while in prison, he discovers that there is good and bad in every race. The task before him now is to convince Danny of his newfound enlightenment.

My Personal View :
Before anyone jumps me, this is probably the most renowned movie on the list. It was nominated for several awards including an Oscar and won two “Best Actor” awards for Norton. But there are still so many people who haven’t even heard of this film! If there is anyone wondering how Ed Norton got his reputation as one of the best actors around today, this is the movie that did it for him! If you only know him as the weakly man from Fight Club and The Incredible Hulk you will be shocked! I would rather run into the Hulk in a dark alley than run into Derek Vinyard anytime time of the day!

The movie itself is quite simply a masterpiece in every respect! The story is gritty, compelling and frighteningly true to life. Each and every performance is delivered to perfection and the main characters are filled with a depth rarely seen on screen. There are times you even (dare I say) understand why people do the brutal things they do while the moments of regret could have you sympathising with the Devil himself. This movie also has one of the most cringe-worthy scenes in film to date involving some teeth, a curb, and the sole of Derek’s boot!

Boondock Saints

Directed by :
Troy Duffy

Starring :
Sean Patrick Flanery, Norman Reedus, Willem Dafoe, Billy Connolly.

Synopsis :
When two Irish brothers accidentally kill mafia thugs, they turn themselves in and are soon released as heroes. Seeing it as a calling by God they start knocking off mafia gang members one by one. FBI agent Paul Smecker tries to figure out the killings, but the closer he gets to catching the Irish brothers, the more he thinks they are doing the right thing.

My Personal View :
Earths Mightiest member SHHH has very recently done an article on this movie and there is very little I can add to it! Damn fine job! The movie is simply a joy to watch and has the feel of a true cult classic about it. I love the way you see Paul Smecker’s view of events painting the two brothers as skilful assassins while the true turn of events show them to be pretty pathetic, but full of charm, determination and a large slice of luck!

Head over to for a more in-depth look at this movie, then buy it!

Dark City

Directed by :
Alex Proyas

Starring :
Rufus Sewell, William Hurt, Kiefer Sutherland, Jennifer Connelly, Richard O’Brian.

Synopsis :
John Murdoch awakens alone in a strange hotel to find that he has lost his memory and is wanted for a series of brutal and bizarre murders. While trying to piece together his past, he stumbles upon a fiendish underworld controlled by a group of beings known as The Strangers. Possessing the ability to alter the city and its inhabitants at will, they use humans as an experiment. Now Murdoch has evolved to resist and even duplicate their abilities. Can he hone his new talents and find a way to stop them before they take control of his mind and destroy him.

My Personal View :
I remember my feeling when first seeing this more than almost any other movie. I was completely blown away, it truly was (and still is to some extent) unique. We have movies about the world not being real but this takes that concept to a whole new level and in such an isolated environment. It challenges issues movies like the Matrix couldn’t possibly hope to do justice. With fantastic set pieces and FX used in conjunction with the script, rather than a devise to cover plot holes, and fantastic performances, this movie is a must for any DVD collection!


Directed by :
James Mangold

Starring :
John Cusack, Ray Liotta, Alfred Molina

Synopsis :
Strangers from all different walks of life: a limo driver escorting a movie star, parents with a young son, a cop transporting a convict, a prostitute, a young couple, and a motel manager are caught up in a nasty rainstorm, stuck at a motel in desolate Nevada. Soon they realize they may be at the motel for another reason when one by one, people start getting killed off. As tensions flare and fingers are pointed, they have to get to the bottom of why they're there. Meanwhile in an undisclosed location, a psychiatrist is trying to prove the innocence of a man accused of murder in an eleventh hour trial. How these two through-lines are related can only be found in Identity.

My Personal View :
I pride myself on being one of those annoying people who spot and point out every upcoming twist a movie has to offer, this movie caught me out though. I expected a straight forward slasher movie with an overly predictable twist, boy was I wrong! The solid performances and clever writing keep you guessing and second guessing right up to the end. After the main twist comes there is a further small twist that is more foreseeable. This movie is a master class on who to make an unpredictable movie from a simple plot.


Directed by :
Matthew Vaughn

Starring :
Claire Danes, Charlie Cox, Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert De Niro.

Synopsis :
The passage from this world to the fantasy kingdom of Stormhold is through a breech in a wall beside an English village. In the 1800s, a boy becomes a man when he ventures through the breech in pursuit of a fallen star, to prove his love for the village beauty. The star is no lump of rock, it's a maiden, Yvaine. Tristan, the youth, is not the only one looking for her: three witches, led by Lamia, want her heart to make them young; and, the sons of the dead king of Stormhold want her because she holds a ruby that will give one of them title to the throne. Assisting Tristan are his mother, the victim of a spell, and a transvestite pirate of the skies. Will Tristan win his true love?

My Personal View :
This movie was given a fairly hefty marketing campaign but despite this failed to achieve the success it deserves. It may sound a bit of a chick flick for the hardened movie goer but this movie captures something only one other movie has ever managed. I can’t explain what that something is exactly. There is a perfect balance of love, swordplay, magic and an extra charm that appeals to both male and female only ever seen once before. Yes, this movie is this generations “Princess Bride”. Many movies have come close to satisfying both the male and female audiences this successfully but none of them have had what it takes to satisfy both genders from all walks of life. This movie has the same feel as Princess Bride and that same something you can’t put your finger on. That “something” is the only thing missing from Pirates Of The Caribbean, the only other movie I can think of that comes close to ticking all the boxes.

Suicide Kings

Directed by :
Peter O’Fallon

Starring :
Christopher Walken, Dennis Leary, Sean Patrick Flannery

Synopsis :
When Avery Chasten's sister, Elise, is kidnapped for a $2,000,000 ransom, he turns to his friends for a means to collect the money. Their plan, to kidnap ex-mob boss Charlie Barret and force him to use his connections to find the girl. The only problem, what happens when you put a wily mob boss up against 4 rich kids who've never kidnapped anyone before? And what happens when they start turning against each other? Elsewhere, Barret's henchman Lono Veccio is beating up everyone in town to find Elise. So the real question is: Who ends up screwing who?

My Personal View :
I haven’t met anyone who’s seen this movie without me lending it to them! It’s a crime! This is one of my all-time favourite films and Walken at his very best. His power and screen presence shine through despite the fact he spends the entire movie drugged up and tied to a chair! This is a very clever movie, all the way through you’re thinking “OK, these guys were desperate, I get that. But did they ever think about what would happen when the time came to release an ex-mob boss?”. It’s great to see the tensions flair and seeds of doubt flowering in each friends mind about what they are doing, why they are doing it and how the hell are they going to get out of it?

The Hole

Directed by :
Nick Hamm

Starring :
Thora Birch, Desmond Harrington, Keira Knightly.

Synopsis :
One misty morning, Liz Dunn stumbles down the road to her school and screams for help. A police psychologist gets her to reveal her story: A month earlier: three rebellious teenagers - Mike, Frankie and Geoff are trying to ditch the school field trip to Wales. The school nerd Martin helps them out by allowing them to stay in an old war bunker for the three days on the condition that his friend Liz joins them. The teens go down, party and have great fun but Martin doesn't return to let them out and they hope and pray that someone will find them...

My Personal View :
I love this movie and thanks to it, I love Thora Birch! Yes, Kiera (I can only act with my mouth catching the flies attracted by the shit that is my performance) Knightly is in it, and yes, she gets her breasts out (back when she had them). But none of those factors add or take anything away from a great script, great story and a fantastic display of suspense building. What happened down in the bunker? You have to watch it to find out!

The Prophecy

Directed by :
Gregory Widen

Starring :
Christopher Walken, Elias Koteas, Eric Stoltz, Viggo Mortensen (cameo but needs a mention).

Synopsis :
"Some people lose their faith because Heaven shows them too little," says Thomas Daggett. "But how many people lose their faith because Heaven showed them too much?" Daggett nearly became a priest; now he's a cop. He may want to put religion behind him, but one morning a weird, eyeless, hermaphroditic corpse turns up. Suddenly he is on a path that will put him right in the middle of a war in Heaven. And once again, Heaven will show him too much: gore, blood, charred flesh, living corpses and much worse. Even more central to the heavenly war effort is a young girl. This American Indian child has something Gabriel wants. And Gabriel is willing to kill her and anyone in his path - or even reanimate a corpse or two - to get it.

My Personal View :
I love all mythology on Angels and the wars of Heaven and Hell. It seems a shame that there have been so many movies on the subject but so few of them are any good! Yes, lots have good elements but tend to descend into cheesy or silly fantasy. This however, is the exception to the rule! Walken is (again) on fine form and flexing his voice which must be the single most potent weapon in cinema! Forget the Schwarzenegger arm, the Van Dam high kick, the Alien mouth-in-a-mouth, even the Chuck Norris beard can’t withstand the power of Walken in full chorus! Backed by an ever-brilliant Eric Stoltz this movie plays out beautifully, taking a relatively simple plot and drawing you in. If this movie was a cake then it would surely need a cherry on top, that cherry comes in the form of Viggo Mortensen’s cameo as Lucifer himself. Pure genius! OK, maybe I went a little too far with the Chuck Norris Beard.

So there it is, movies that deserve so much more!

Each synopsis was taken from and in some cases edited by myself.
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Excellent article Ron!

Welcome to EM-the sky is the limit here. Actually that's not true, we go into outer space stuff as well.

When I clicked on this and read your intro, first movie I thought of was Stardust. It is a great story written by Neil Gaiman (Sandman). Have not seen Hole (will check it out) but all the others are very good.
DogsOfWar - 4/22/2010, 11:10 AM
The Boondock Saints rock! great movie..Love the Courtroom scene..Idenity Great also..If people haven't seen The prophecy!! They better get ta walmart or blockbuster..Great List!

Thanks Also!!

SHHH - 4/22/2010, 11:12 AM
Dude, I own all of these except one. Best believe I'll be picking the hole up first chance I get. Great list and well done. But, you forgot Powder. That movie is also very underrated

joslezio85 - 4/22/2010, 12:21 PM
Welcome aboard, Ron. Great piece to kick off with.
EdGross - 4/22/2010, 12:44 PM
Awesome, awesome, AWESOME article, Ron!!! Oh and Norris' beard has NOTHING on your 'stach!!!

Haven't seen all of these cause at the time of their release, i simply wasn't into the genre. But Identity BLEW my head clean off!!! And it's also a shame cause now i can't enjoy that film as much as the first time. It's like the opposite of sex. Prophecy's a given. That film is a must for any fan of the lore. Viggo is definitely the highlight, even better than Walken... i know, i know... sacriledge, crucify me. My favorite Walken performances were in The Rundown(Welcome To The Jungle) & of course, the film any Walken fan has to enjoy; Balls of Fury. Even IF you find the film to suck, Walken was gold in it!!! Plus, he freakin' kills Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa in a single shot very early on. I mean... who the [frick] gets to do that but Walken... ever??? Stardust is also one of my fantasy faves, comparing it to Princess Bride is as accurate as it gets. Concider the rest of these on my list to buy ASAP... except X. That's really not my thing. Maybe in later life ;)

EARTHSHATTERING article, my friend!!! :))
Shaman - 4/22/2010, 1:44 PM
great article ron no go back to your home on whore island :). i have only seen 2 of these, dark city and identity, and i agree completely. both great movies. ill have to get my netflix going on the others.
superdog - 4/23/2010, 6:59 AM
Good stuff Ron....i personaly didnt think much of Stardust or the Hole but the rest are awesome....uuuh except Boondock since i have not seen it yet lol

Look forward to more of this from your good self :P
teabag - 4/23/2010, 8:41 AM
thanks guys! Wasn't sure how this article would sit so it nice to hear some kudos.

Ed - thanks for the front page welcome!

SHHH - have you seen Boondock Saints 2? Saw it online so the quality was a bit poor but it was MUCH better than I expected! But alas, no cat scene...

Joslezio85 - nice to hear someone else owns Suicide Kings!

There were a couple of movies that didn't make the article so I may just have to do a sequel!

Shaman - Rundown ("welcome to the jungle" in my town) was on the short list but it was one I left out to stop the article going on too long. If I do part 2 you will no doubt see it there! Great movie!
Ron - 4/23/2010, 9:28 AM
@Ron: Yes I have seen it..Love the movie....Fyi..Duffy has idea for a 3rd...Tentative title is The BoonDock Saints: Saints Save Us...You wanna know were to get a good copy of Saints Al Day??? He can't leave em in prison...You know that is the same prison thier father was held..

Suicide kings... Sean Patrick Flanery is Max Minot
Great tatse in movies!!!

SHHH - 4/23/2010, 12:17 PM
Great list, Ron! I've seen all of them (except for The Hole, only seen bits of that one), and I like them all!

American History X is great, Ed Norton at the top of his game! Completely agree about rather meeting the Hulk...

The Prophecy (which is called "God's Army" here in Germany... for whatever reason...) had me a little dissapointed, when I bought and rewatched it lately. I saw it when I was quite young and it really impressed me back then, so maybe the problem was that my expectations were just too high. Still a good movie, and it has Christopher Walken delievering lines like:

"I'm an angel. I kill firstborns while their mamas watch. I turn cities into salt. I even, when I feel like it, rip the souls from little girls, and from now till kingdom come, the only thing you can count on in your existence is never understanding why."

So now I need to watch The Hole, and maybe rewatch Suicide Kings...

Looking forward to a possible part 2 of your list!
Kyos - 4/24/2010, 8:10 AM
"transvestite space pirates" i feel weird wanting to watch that movie
soperman - 5/4/2010, 8:01 PM

DarthD3mn8 - 5/29/2013, 6:54 PM

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