If one movie is never enough for you and you’re looking for a flick to get you in the mood for this week’s new release, Double Feature Friday is here to help. Every week we break down the new releases and pair them with older movies that you should catch before heading out to the theater. Or just skip the new movie and check out the classic we recommend.
“21 Jump Street” & “Point Break”
If there’s any group that’s more difficult to infiltrate than high school students, it’s definitely surfers. Just as Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum have to blend in while trying to make the big bust in “21 Jump Street,” Keanu Reeves has to convince Patrick Swayze that he’s a bona fide surfer dude. There are two possible scenarios when it comes to the Katherine Bigelow masterpiece of 90s action: either you haven’t seen it and suck or you have seen it and need to watch it again. Regardless of what situation you’re in, “Point Break” and two meatball subs would be the perfect pregame for “21 Jump Street.”
“Casa de mi Padre” & “Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia”
Will Ferrell speaking seemingly-fluent Spanish may seem like the most ridiculous adventure you can have south of the border, but if that’s what you think, you haven’t seen Sam Peckinpah’s capital-I insane “Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia.” Warren Oates plays the always out-of-it Bennie, a gringo bartender who tries to collect the bounty placed on the literal head of a dead gigolo. And that’s only half of it. “Alfredo Garcia” takes on the same sun-tanned, dirt-covered look of a lot of the westerns and telenovelas that “Casa de mi Padre” riffs off of, plus it will set the mood to ludicrous before you head to the theater for the second movie.
“Jeff, Who Lives at Home” & “Cedar Rapids”
In his attempt to recreate the post-“Daily Show” career of Steve Carell, Ed Helms followed Michael Scott to Dunder Mifflin, and he’s had some success in films in his own right. One of his very first movies as a lead, the under-seen comedy “Cedar Rapids,” remains one of his best and strangest performances. In the movie, Helms plays Tim Lippe, a sheltered insurance salesman who isn’t used to the flashy lifestyle of a big city like Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “Cedar Rapids” has a lot of heart, a ton of laughs and one of John C. Reilly’s best performances. If you’re leaving your basement to see “Jeff, Who Lives at Home,” make it an Ed Helms double feature.
“Detachment” & “Half Nelson”
Tony Kaye’s latest picture, a condemnation of the current state of the public school system, has all of the subtlety of a brick thrown through a classroom window. Instead of that parade of overacting and heavy handed plotting, check out the film for which Ryan Gosling earned an Oscar nomination. In “Half Nelson,” Gosling plays Dan Dunne, a public school teacher who attempts to take an endangered girl under his wing despite a crack addiction. Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden’s film debut navigates similar waters but does so with grace and insight, whereas “Detachment” prefers a speed boat blaring “Another Brick in the Wall.”