Pick of the week: “The One I Love“: My full review is here. This indie comedy/drama takes a “Twilight Zone”-esque turn early on as an estranged married couple (Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss) decide to spend a weekend at their therapist’s vacation home — only to discover there’s something very strange going on in the guest house. While it gets a little too enamored of its own plot twists in the third act, this is still an inventive and thoughtful film about how relationships change and don’t change.
“Almost Famous“: Cameron Crowe’s paean to his rock ‘n’ roll adolescence is a winning comedy about the dangers and the rewards of meeting your own idols, with Patrick Fugit as a wide-eyed young Crowe stand-in following his favorite band on the road, and Philip Seymour Hoffman wonderful as the unvarnished rock critic Lester Bangs.
“American Beauty“: Some of the satire of suburban life is thuddingly obvious in Alan Ball’s Oscar-winning drama, but there are sublime moments as well in this tale of a well-to-do family coming apart at the seams when Dad Kevin Spacey tries to revisit his teenage years.
“A Knight’s Tale“: Brian Helgeland’s cheerfully anachronistic medieval tale follows Heath Ledger as a handsome young jouster who fights his way to fame, while the court dances along to modern pop songs like Bowie’s “Golden Years.”
“The Dark Crystal“: Jim Henson’s bold leap into dark fantasy — still using puppets — has held up awfully well since it was released in 1984. The follow-up “Labyrinth,” with David Bowie, also just went up on Netflix Instant.