Five Movies To Watch When You’re Done With “Big Gold Brick”

The American dark comedy film Big Gold Brick, directed by Brian Petsos, in his directorial debut, had its initial release last month. It stars Emory Cohen, Andy Garcia, Megan Fox, Lucy Hale, Shiloh Fernandez Frederick Schmidt, and Oscar Isaac. The film follows emerging writer Samuel Liston who is hired by the man who hit him with his car. The stranger, Floyd Deveraux, offers him an opportunity to write his biography and asks him to stay with him and his family as he writes the biography. In a review by Time, they commended the film’s take on the genre saying “Fewer of those movies find their way into the mainstream today, but Brian Petsos’ wonky comedy Big Gold Brick shows a similarly idiosyncratic, go-for-broke spirit. Its low-key eccentricity—driven by an affably capricious performance from Andy Garcia—is its greatest pleasure.” If you enjoyed the quirky dark comedy Big Gold Brick and you’re up for more surrealistic films, here are five of our movie recommendations that will surely rack your brain as well as have you laughing.

Stranger Than Fiction

The 2006 American fantasy comedy-drama film Stranger than Fiction shares a similar tone with Big Gold Brick although less quirky, it also features an author writing a story who is faced with writer’s block. The film was directed by Marc Forster, produced by Lindsay Doran, and written by Zach Helm. The film stars Will Ferrell, in his first dramatic role, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah, and Emma Thompson. The film follows auditor Harold Crick who one day hears a voice narrating his life as it happens. He tries to find the author of his story and wishes to change his fate in the story being narrated. The Guardian praised the film in their review saying, “This consistently funny, intriguing and intellectually engaging picture goes for chuckles and appreciative smiles rather than belly laughs, and up until the final moments it appeals to the mind rather than the heart.”

Birdman

In Big Gold Brick, author Samuel struggles to write as he battles with voices in his head and his imagination, while in the 2014 American black comedy-drama film Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) Hollywood actor Riggan Thomson battles with his ego as he attempts to revive his career by writing, directing, and starring in a Broadway production. The cast features Michael Keaton in the lead role and includes Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone, and Naomi Watts in supporting roles. Birdman received critical acclaim and garnered several accolades which include winning Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Cinematography at the 87th Academy Awards from a total of nine nominations. The film also won Outstanding Cast in a Motion Picture at the 21st Screen Actors Guild Awards, as well as Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy for Keaton and Best Screenplay at the 72nd Golden Globe Awards. Variety gave a glowing review for the film on its take on deconstructing an actor’s ego and wrote, “Birdman” offers by far the most fascinating meta-deconstruction of an actor’s ego since “Being John Malkovich,” and one that leaves no room for vanity. From the moment Keaton first removes his wig to the sight of him wrapped in Batman-like facial bandages, his performance reveals itself in layers.”

Sorry To Bother You

Both Big Gold Brick and the 2018 black comedy film Sorry to Bother You are surrealistic in nature. The latter film was written and directed by Boots Riley, in his directorial debut, and stars Lakeith Stanfield, Tessa Thompson, Jermaine Fowler, Omari Hardwick, Terry Crews, Patton Oswalt, David Cross, Danny Glover, Steven Yeun, and Armie Hammer. The film centers on a young telemarketer Cassius Green who makes his way up the career ladder after following the advice of his co-worker to adopt a white accent. He however faces moral conflict as his co-workers plan a protest against the company. The Guardian praised the film for its high entertaining value saying, “It is when Cassius goes to the sinister upper floor that things get wacky and strange, and here is where the story could have run out of steam, over-reliant on weirdness. But a bizarre new twist keeps you on the edge of your seat. It’s a Swiftian vision of the service industry’s evolutionary future, or perhaps anti-Swiftian.”

The Truman Show

The Truman Show is a 1998 American psychological comedy-drama film directed by Peter Weir, produced by Scott Rudin, Andrew Niccol, Edward S. Feldman, and Adam Schroeder, with a screenplay by Niccol. The film stars Jim Carrey as Truman Burbank, an insurance salesman who discovers that his life is actually a television show. The supporting cast also includes Laura Linney, Ed Harris, Noah Emmerich, Natascha McElhone, Holland Taylor, Paul Giamatti, and Brian Delate The film received critical acclaim and earned several nominations at the 71st Academy Awards, 56th Golden Globe Awards, 52nd British Academy Film Awards, and 25th Saturn Awards. Washington Post published a review of the film emphasizing how to best enjoy the film. “The Truman Show” is that rare cinematic experience-a movie so close to pure perfection that it seems a shame to spoil it by even reading a review beforehand. Ironically, this intricate satire on the subject of media saturation should be seen by eyes untainted by previews, television advertisements or even the opinions of critics in order for its smart, teasing story to work its full magic.”

Being John Malkovich

We can’t talk about surreal comedy films without including the fantasy comedy film Being John Malkovich in this list of must-watch movies. The film is a feature debut film for both director Spike Jonze and screenwriter Charlie Kaufman. It stars John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener, and John Malkovich who plays a satirical version of himself. The film follows a puppeteer played by Cusack who finds a portal that leads him into Malkovich’s mind which lets him see the world through the actor’s eyes. The film is critically acclaimed and has been hailed by many as the best film of 1999 and earned several nominations including Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actress for Keener at the 72nd Academy Awards. Empire gave a five-star review of the film and wrote, “At times it all becomes a little too surreal for its own good, but otherwise the multi-talented Jonze, has created an outstanding piece of work, an off-kilter vision curiously reminiscent of the Coen Brothers, that isn’t easily forgotten.”

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