Five Good Movies to Bring in the New Year

Yes, that was 2012 that just flew passed you. Three hundred and sixty-five days that seemed to be here, and then it was gone. We all have our traditions when it comes to ringing in the New Year, some like a quiet night at home watching the ball drop in Times Square, some like a crazy night at home (or someone else’s) or there’s those that brave the outdoors and try for a special evening in a bar or restaurant. End of the year movies aren’t much of a tradition however. Christmas, Halloween, Valentine’s Day…all occasions for Hollywood to crank out another film. New Year’s Eve? Not so much. But there are a few good movies worth noting and what better way to kick off 2013 (I’m going to have a hard time saying that number for a while).

Strange Days (1995) – apparently, in 1995, we were just 4 years away from virtual reality head visors that could make you feel another person’s experiences. Sorry, no flying cars. What it does have is a fight against police corruption during 1999’s New Year’s Eve, courtesy of director Kathryn Bigelow, writer James Cameron and Ralph Fiennes.

Poseidon Adventure (1972) – Hey, want to spend New Year’s Eve on a boat? This movie was during the 1970’s Hollywood catastrophe era which included Towering Inferno, Airport, Earthquake and this: big stars brought together to be killed by disaster. A luxury cruise liner is flipped over by a huge wave and Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine and Shelley Winters are on the defensive.

Forrest Gump (1994) – Not so much a New Year’s Eve movie as one about the passage of time and how it impacts people. One of the great moments of the movie is when Gump (Tom Hanks) is welcoming the New Year with his best friend Lieutenant Dan and a few hookers. Things do not go so well.
Forrest, “I’m sorry I ruined your New Year’s Even Party, Lieutenant Day. She tasted like cigarettes.”

When Harry Met Sally (1989) – Can good friends include sex in the relationship without ruining it? It’s the questioned posed by director Rob Reiner and writer Nora Ephron and answered in a great New Year’s Eve scene at the end of the movie between Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan. It may not be a New Year’s film, but it is a good film – amazingly written and a little too truthful.

The Apartment (1960) – New Year’s Eve is usually used in film as a time for clarity and reevaluation. How was this year for me? Will I make the same mistakes? What does the new year hold for me? If you’re Shirley Maclaine, you’re looking over at Jack Lemmon on what seems like a failed night of partying, when it really is a bit of an eye opener.

However you spend your last night of 2012, I hope it’s with your friends and family and you’re surrounded in good times. This was an amazing year, and not too bad for movies either. I wish you the very best in 2013 (and hopefully more good movies).

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