The past couple of weeks have been a torrential downpour of terrible news and the realization of just how much we have to grow as a society. It’s been stressful, rage-inducing, and anxiety-stoking to say the least. So I’ve decided to share with you the movies that I turn to when I need my mind eased and spirits lifted.
This Norwegian horror comedy is perhaps unconventional as a movie to make one happy. If you watch it, you’ll understand why I have it on this list.
Three Norwegian film students decide to film a documentary on the man they think is responsible for the rash of bear poaching. It turns out that the man is actually a trollhunter for the government and he is fed up with the terrible hours and crappy benefits. He allows the film crew to tag along while he investigates the influx of trolls to the area.
Don’t make me choose between these two movies from my childhood. I cannot do it. The Muppet Movie features a trippy scene with Dr. Teeth and Electric Mayhem rocking while painting a van while The Muppets Take Manhattan has frog amnesia and a Broadway show. You can’t watch either of them without smiling, unless you have poop where your soul should be.
4. The Avengers
The Avengers is just a big, fun, exploding movie of very sexy people doing cool things and saving the world. From Cap’s Ass to Thor quipping that Loki is adopted, the whole thing keeps you entertained and giggling long enough to forget that we don’t have real superheroes to step into dire situations.
It’s just like Jack Burton always says: “If you want a good time, try a John Carpenter movie starring Kurt Russell on for size.” Big Trouble in Little China has got romance, a self-absorbed hero, lots of fighting, monsters, curses, and big rigs. How can you help but grin with Kurt Russell sporting lipstick smears on his face and facing off against Garbage Pail Kids-looking evil dudes.
6. Hot Rod
I like my comedy absurd and formulaic. Rod has been a daredevil all his life. He’s surrounded by dim friends that share his enthusiasm for sweet stunts like jumping the public pool and taking on ramps set up in the street. When Rod’s step-father needs a surgery, the gang all find a way to raise money through daredevilry.
I don’t need to explain this choice to you. Right?
MST3K is my go-to for melting away my stress. This technically counts as a movie, because this is my list and I make up the rules as I go. So.
This particular choice is a favorite because the premise of the film is so ridiculous. A man is sent into space where he is impregnated with alien babies that look like brine shrimp. When the Blood Beast comes to Earth to just talk, a group of…scientists? NASA experts? Steves? have to take it on.
The riffing is delightfully absurd, with Crow deciding to fake a pregnancy for all of those sweet, sweet perks. You get a bonus short with insane people singing about phones.
Here’s another movie with a strange sense of humor. The murder-mystery based on the board game is filled with comedic genius and a myriad of quotable moments.
10. Wayne’s World
I remember when this movie was released. I saw it in the theater opening weekend. I loved it. I think the movie still holds up pretty well and the jokes aren’t too 90s specific to work. You also get the bonus of funny Mike Myers and vintage Rob Lowe.