Film & TV

Epoch Watchlist: What to Watch for Jan. 27–Feb. 2

BY Ian Kane TIMEJanuary 27, 2023 PRINT

This week, we feature a classic 1950s drama about a group of troubled teens and an inspiring sports flick about a wannabe football player.

New Release

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‘The Amazing Maurice’

In this animated tale based on a book by author Terry Pratchett, scrappy feline Maurice (voiced by Hugh Laurie) joins forces with a piper and a group of talking rats to realize his dreams (and schemes) of striking it rich. However, once they make it to the town of Bad Blintz, their plans go awry.

With a bevy of great voice actors and excellent computer-generated animation, this is an enjoyable movie that should appeal to both kids and adults. It’s filled with light peril, whimsical humor, and some genuinely touching moments.

Animation | Adventure | Comedy
Release Date:
Feb. 3, 2023
Toby Genkel and Florian Westermann
Hugh Laurie (voice), Emilia Clarke (voice), David Thewlis (voice)
1 hour, 33 minutes
MPAA Rating: PG
Where to Watch:
Rated: 3 stars out of 5

Indie Pick

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‘Lost in Translation’

In this charming indie from director Sofia Coppola, Bob Harris (Bill Murray), a washed-up movie star in the midst of a midlife crisis, is on an advertising job in Tokyo. In the hotel bar, Bob meets young Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson), who’s going through her own challenges. As both feel lost in life, the two form a genuine friendship that helps to ease each other’s angst.

Fortunately, this quirky comic drama never devolves into sentimentality, mainly due to natural dialogue, earthy acting, and the chemistry between its stars.

Comedy | Drama
Release Date:
Oct. 3, 2003
Director: Sofia Coppola
Starring: Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Giovanni Ribisi
Running Time: 1 hour, 42 minutes
MPAA Rating: R
Where to Watch: DirecTV, Redbox, Vudu
Rated: 3 stars out of 5

Going for a Big Dream

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In the tough manufacturing suburb of Joliet, Illinois, college-aged Daniel E. “Rudy” Ruettiger (Sean Astin) has aspirations of playing football for the University of Notre Dame. However, his grades and athletic talent aren’t strong enough and prove to be obstacles he must face in order to realize his big dream.

This biographical sports drama about the real-life Rudy Ruettiger features great acting and a hopeful message about never giving up on one’s dreams, despite whatever challenges one faces.

Biography | Drama | Sport
Release Date:
Oct. 22, 1993
Directors: David Anspaugh
Starring: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
Running Time: 1 hour, 54 minutes
MPAA Rating: PG
Where to Watch: DirecTV, Vudu, Redbox
Rated: 3.5 stars out of 5

Urban Teens in 1950s America

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‘Rebel Without a Cause’

This drama follows Jim Stark (James Dean), a teenager whose family has just moved to Los Angeles. Jim has issues with his parents but finds solace in 16-year-old Judy (Natalie Wood). However, trouble soon arrives in the form of Judy’s rough-and-tumble boyfriend.

This powerful film deals with the urban teen angst of the post-war era and features an ideal cast in gutsy performances.

Release Date:
Oct. 27, 1955
Director: Nicholas Ray
Starring: James Dean, Natalie Wood, Sal Mineo
Time: 1 hour, 51 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Where to Watch: DirecTV, Amazon, Redbox
Rated: 3.5 stars out of 5

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Ian Kane is an U.S. Army veteran, author, filmmaker, and actor. He is dedicated to the development and production of innovative, thought-provoking, character-driven films and books of the highest quality.
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