Movies that Make You Think

This post is a continuation of a discussion a few of us were having over lunch this week. (Joel, Morgan, JLee, Monty, Sam, Avin). Ever see a movie that you thought about for days or weeks afterwards? Or have the unstoppable desire to discuss the movie you just saw for hours? These movies touch something in you that you just have to discuss and process what you just experienced.

Obviously, not every single person can see every single movie, so no hating on me for not including your favorites. Just comment about your own favorites that aren’t on my list. ONE RULE: No spoilers. Please don’t ruin these movies for others who may not have seen them yet.

OK – So what movies messed with your head?

My picks are in no particular order…

  1. Hotel Rwanda
    Genocide. Yeah – turn that off and go eat some popcorn and talk about the weather. Riiiiiiiight.
  2. Crash
    If this movie didn’t challenge you on racism, then you have no pulse.
  3. The Kingdom
    A fascinating story and captivating characters.
  4. Gone Baby Gone
    No spoilers…but the choice made at the end of this film will leave you talking and thinking for weeks.
  5. Shawshank Redemption
    What is hope?
  6. Sling Blade / Of Mice and Men / To Kill A Mockingbird
    I put these together because they are variations on a theme.
  7. American Beauty
    Is there beauty in everyday life that we blow right by all the time?
  8. Million Dollar Baby
    Gotta admit – you would consider it…I don’t care who you are.
  9. The Devil’s Advocate
    Gotta watch your eyes on this one, but the themes are powerful and stay with you for a while.
  10. The Butterfly Effect
    Say what you want about Ashton Kutcher…I still think about the concept of this film a lot.
  11. Flatliners
    You gotta admit…penance is not a topic you see a lot of.
  12. Se7en
    This one will keep you up at night. What would pure evil look like?
  13. Quills
    Another one you got to watch your eyes with, but does the Marqis DeSade get a bum rap? Did God make him that way? Can you blame a person for being who they think they really are?
  14. Amadaeus
    Woah. Heavy. Go beneath the surface of this one and find a very dark tale of jealousy, envy, revenge.
  15. Gattaca
    This film is getting more and more relevant as the years go by.
  16. Parenthood
    I reflect back on this movie all the time.
  17. The Searchers
    Racism comes in lots of shades.
  18. Giant
    Again with the racsm and power-hungry. But oh so good.
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16 Comments on “Movies that Make You Think”

  1. loudandclear87 Says:

    thanks jerm, i have like 10 new movies on my list to see

  2. stacybuckeye Says:

    I’ve seen almost all of these and the three that stuck with me the longest were Crash, Shawshank, and Se7en. Good list.

  3. Babs Johnson Says:

    While i might be prejudiced I would like to add a new documentary called Katrina’s Children to the list. If you go to you can view the trailer.

    For full disclosure I am theproducer but it is a film about Hurricane Katrina purely from the perspective of 19 children from all walks of life and their stories, while often heartbreaking, reveal children with amazing resilliency, talent and potential.

  4. jermtech Says:

    Thanks for the visit, Stacy. Do I know you or how did you find me?

  5. jermtech Says:

    Wow…the producer of a film is visiting my blog…such a small world. I’ll have to check it out, Babs.

  6. Crash and Seven are great flix

  7. Natalie Smoak Says:

    I had this reaction to Signs, but I think few did.

  8. jermtech Says:

    I actually liked Signs, Nat. Mels “speech” to Joaquin Pheonix on the couch about faith IS something that you can recall and think about….”what you have to ask yourself is if you’re the type of person that believes…”

    Good catch, Nat.

  9. jermtech Says:

    I’ve had people mention Schindler’s List to me regarding this list, but my experience was much more emotional and spiritual than it was intellectual. Ditto for Passion of the Christ. Do you guys agree?

  10. Jon Keller Says:

    I’d put Fight Club on my list… probably KIDS too. screw it, i might as well just make a list. I do agree with you on most all of these though

  11. Natalie Smoak Says:

    I think Passion has its intellectual moments from the standpoint that it changes your perspective on Christ in what I would argue is a cognitive way, at least in part. I think it’s definitely emotional…don’t get me wrong. But there are many thought exercises to be had after you see Passion.

  12. jermtech Says:

    I’ve had people mention Donnie Darko to me. But I’ve never seen it.

  13. Steven Says:

    uhhh…Matrix? Truman Show? Memento? Dead Poet’s Society?

  14. jermtech Says:

    Other than going bananas about all the special effects, what deep conversations did the Matrix stir up? The Middle East philosophy stuff?

  15. Eric H Says:

    Good list (what I’ve seen of it anyway..those I haven’t I will check out). FYI, Gattaca is one of the most underappreciated films in the sci-fi genre. One of my faves!

    I would add…
    Blood Diamond
    Requiem For a Dream (unfortunately quite graphic)
    The Fountain (don’t know how intellectual it is, but it’s a GREAT movie)
    The Matrix Trilogy — allegory & philosophy 😉
    The Kite Runner (so sad – I dig the subtly libertarian dad….haha)

  16. Cameron H Says:

    Children of Men.

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