Thursday Movie Picks: Amusement Parks


Last week was all about summer vacation movies which I cleverly avoided because I needed two of those movies into this list! Turns out I know how to plan ahead, who knew!? Anyway, here are three amusement park related recommendations, and even though two of them are really obvious, I feel like I cheated a little with the third one – but I don’t really care!

1. BIG (1988)

On Sunday, one of the most loved actors Tom Hanks celebrated his 61st birthday and I thought I’d include a Tom Hanks classic in this week’s list. Hanks, who provided me with so many of my childhood favourites, has had a very long career and though I haven’t seen most of his latest movies, I have only fond memories of most of his 90’s films. And Big is no different. Our main character wakes up after a visit to an amusement park as a new man and everything builds from there. Big has heart, it has soul, and it has a great message!


I bet this pick will be all over this week’s post because it’s pretty much the first movie that comes to mind when one thinks of amusement parks. It’s a really good summer-esque movie and it features my favourite performance by Kristen Stewart – which is also the only performance by her I’ve enjoyed. It is quirky, it is different and it’s quite memorable even though I saw this ages ago!

3. THE WAY WAY BACK (2013)

Water park is an amusement park, right? Let’s say it’s the same thing because I really want to recommend this Sam Rockwell movie! It was also the movie I thought about last week, and I saw it mentioned as well but I was holding myself back, because it would have been a shame not to mention it this time around. I love this movie! I just watched it again (today) because I got that feeling of pure joy revisiting the trailer for it. It’s the perfect movie for the summer, and man, Sam Rockwell needs to be cast in every indie comedy!



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  • Reply
    Maria Casacalenda (Big City Bookworm)
    July 13, 2017 at 5:32 PM

    I absolutely LOVED The Way Way Back!

    I definitely think a water park could be considered an amusement park haha! Man, now I really want to re-watch it again! 😀

    • Reply
      July 13, 2017 at 5:37 PM

      Watching it is perfect!

  • Reply
    July 13, 2017 at 6:18 PM

    I was wondering if Big would make an appearance this week and I’m so glad it did! Lovely movie that looks at age in and maturity in such an engaging way. Tom Hanks, Elizabeth Perkins and Jared Rushton are all just perfect in their parts.

    I wasn’t thrilled with Adventureland but that had a lot to do with the fact that two of my least favorite performers, Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart were the leads.

    The Way, Way Back made several appearances last week so I was wondering if it would show this week. It was sweet with that great cast and I agree about Sam Rockwell. Water parks absolutely count as amusement parks along with carnivals though circuses are their own thing.

    This was a little harder than I thought it would be after my first choice but I did manage to finally come up with two others.

    Rollercoaster (1977)-After a rollercoaster derails due to a device placed on the track the major amusement park owners receive a taped message from the mad bomber (Timothy Bottoms) that unless they pay him a million dollars the carnage will continue. Safety inspector Harry Calder (George Segal) who had cleared the first coaster and was investigating the crash is pulled in by FBI agent Hoyt (Richard Widmark) when the nameless young man demands Harry deliver the extortion money to his next target or he’ll detonate another bomb. Suspenseful but not quite the experience it was in theatres where it was presented in Sensurround.

    The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies!!? (1964)-I really can’t better this IMDB description: “Jerry falls in love with a stripper he meets at a carnival. Little does he know that she is the sister of a gypsy fortune teller whose predictions he had scoffed at earlier. The gypsy turns him into a zombie and he goes on a killing spree.”

    Or the tagline:
    SEE: the dancing girls of the carnival murdered by the incredible night creatures of the midway! SEE: the hunchback of the midway fight a duel of death with the mixed up zombies! SEE: the world’s first monster musical!

    It’s not good but it’s unique!

    40 Pounds of Trouble (1962)-Sixties version of the Damon Runyon story Little Miss Marker about a little girl left in Lake Tahoe casino manager’s Steve McCluskey (Tony Curtis) care as a hold against the debt owed by her father. When the father is rubbed out Steve with the help of the casino’s singer Chris Lockwood (Suzanne Pleshette) has to look after the tyke and dodge various people after him for different reasons. They decide to take the little one to Disneyland (at this point open less than 10 years) and between rides are chased through the park offering a pretty complete picture of what the place looked like in the 60’s. Cute comedy where unsurprisingly being mostly a Disney movie all ends happily.

    • Reply
      July 14, 2017 at 10:46 AM

      I saw Big around twice this week, which is surprising, I thought I was being clever with my pick. 😀

  • Reply
    July 13, 2017 at 9:04 PM

    I also chose Adventureland. I wish I had liked The Way Way Back more. i wanted to.

    • Reply
      July 14, 2017 at 10:47 AM

      I watched it again like I said and I still liked it a lot.

  • Reply
    July 13, 2017 at 10:23 PM

    I remember being super bored by the movie but Rockwell and Carrel were awesome in it!

    • Reply
      July 14, 2017 at 10:48 AM

      I wanted more Rockwell in it but every time he was on screen, he stole the movie so I guess it wasn’t fair for the others.

  • Reply
    July 13, 2017 at 11:31 PM

    Hey, we share a pick in Big! Nice.

    • Reply
      July 14, 2017 at 10:48 AM

      Awesome! I thought I was the only one. 😀

  • Reply
    July 14, 2017 at 1:22 PM

    My first thought was Adventureland.

    • Reply
      July 15, 2017 at 6:22 PM

      It was mine too, the name screams for it.

  • Reply
    July 14, 2017 at 2:53 PM

    Big is a good movie and a sweet one. Adventureland is one I have not seen but I just watch Way, Way Back since it was mentioned a lot last week and it is charming. You wish Sam Rockwell’s character would get together with the mom

    • Reply
      July 15, 2017 at 6:25 PM

      I wish Sam Rockwell would get more bigger and greater roles! He deserves them and I’d love to see more of him.

  • Reply
    Sonia (A Film A Day)
    July 14, 2017 at 4:51 PM

    I really need to watch Adventureland.

    • Reply
      July 15, 2017 at 6:26 PM

      You should, it’s a good one for the summer!

  • Reply
    Katy Rochelle (@KatyRochelle)
    July 16, 2017 at 8:32 PM

    Awesome picks! I completely forgot that Big was an amusement park movie. That was one of my favorites growing up. 🙂

  • Reply
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