E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial [AKA E.T.] (1982, dir. Steven Spielberg)

A boy befriends a stranded alien. Still-powerful Christ allegory dressed up as a child-friendly sci-fi comedy. Works in all kinds of ways, and is technically astounding throughout. What shines is the quiet confidence on display, and Spielberg’s ability to tell story through character moments and shot composition. Recommended.

Here’s the trailer

The Platform [AKA El Hoyo] (2019, dir. Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia)

A volunteer enters a vertical prison-like social experiment. Splendid Spanish-language mashup of Cube and Snowpiercer; a single-location thriller that offers multiple allegorical readings, but works also as a darkly comic horror-inflected thriller. Brisk and efficient, and well worth your investment.

Other reviews? We’ve got your back.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014, dir. Matt Reeves)

Ten years after the events of Rise, apes and humans come into contact with each other. Superior monkey military parable fun, with hawks and doves in human and ape camps alike, arguing for armageddon and peace respectively. Inevitably, though, war erupts.