Film can be a powerful medium to get us out of our own heads and routines. During lockdown, we’ve loved breaking up monotonous daily cycles by escaping through film – whether that’s by immersing ourselves in incredible destinations in a travel-focused story, rediscovering a nostalgic feel-good favourite, or veering off the beaten track and uncovering some gems from independent and international cinema.
If you find yourself feeling disconnected, bored or lacking inspiration, why not check out one of the iMBARC team’s 10 favourite films to watch during lockdown and surprise yourself by how quickly a great movie can change your mood.
A comedy-drama epic with an unforgettable soundtrack, Nashville follows 24 characters involved in the country music business in Nashville, Tennessee. Painting a satirical portrait of American culture post-Vietnam War, this film will immerse you into whole new period and place and get you thinking about questions of national identity in times of crisis.
If you’ve seen this film, it’s probably been some time since you last watched it – and if you haven’t, you’re in for a treat. Following the tumultuous lives of three young girls working at the same local pizza parlour one summer, this unapologetically warm and cheesy romantic comedy is bound to brighten your day.
Following the perilous journey of asylum-seeking refugee Haile, The Flood is an unflinching portrayal of today’s refugee crisis. A vivid depiction of the humanity at stake in this crisis, this movie won’t cheer you up but it will make you feel more connected to the world around you (and perhaps even inspired to get involved with the cause).
If you want to find out more about how you can help, check out the amazing organisation Help Refugees.
A beguiling documentary that draws you into the African-American and Latino drag scene during the 1980s, Paris is Burning is a stunning depiction of the LGBTQ community in New York City. Taking you on an emotional rollercoaster, the documentary invites you into a world of outlandish costumes, impeccable vogueing and competitive communities. The fierce and unbridled authenticity that shines through this seminal work of cinema will leave you nothing short of inspired.
Following the relatively simple life of Paterson, a bus driver and poet, this profoundly quiet film celebrates the extraordinary in the ordinary and the beauty of routine. A perfect one for watching on a lazy afternoon, outstanding acting performances, poetic screenwriting and thoughtful cinematography make this film a real work of art.
A surreal and absurdist corporate satire, this is a movie that will really get you thinking. Set in an alternate reality, the story follows telemarketer Cassis Green who discovers the value of using a ‘white voice’ on his calls. This dark comedy tackles questions of capitalism, race and inequality and will inspire you to question the kind of society that we operate in – and perhaps, how, when we return to ‘normality’, we can look to establish a new, more equal normal.
The ultimate antidote for emails and social media, Captain Fantastic offers you a glimpse into a life off-grid and lets you live out your fantasies of relocating to the wilderness. Touching, funny and thought-provoking, the film follows the lives of a father and his children who he has committed to raising without the influences of the modern world.
What better way to escape than to lose yourself in the wonderful world of Wes Anderson? Every one of his movies is a delicious sensory feast of meticulous set design, quirky soundtracks and soothing colour palettes but for an added dose of adventure, we recommend The Darjeeling Limited, a comedy-drama following three brothers rekindling their bond on a train journey across India.
A movie of pure magic, Spirited Away is one of the famed Japanese animation studio, Studio Ghibli’s most loved masterpieces. Following a young girl as she enters a supernatural world of spirits (inspired by Japanese Shinto folklore), this film is will stretch your imagination to new heights and leave you spellbound by the power of animation.
A warm and fuzzy documentary, Won’t You Be My Neighbour takes a look at the life and legacy of the host and creator of children’s television series, Mister Rogers’ Neighbourhood. A moving film that captures the compassion and kindness that Fred Rogers inspired in a generation, this is the perfect watch if you’re feeling a little lonely or disconnected.