April Fool’s Day: Six Surprisingly Good Movies

Happy Prank Day. Or Screw Over Your Friends Day. Or Lies are OK Day. (I never did get this day right). Anyway, it’s the time of year when you trick your friends and customers through elaborate (and if you’re good, funny) pranks. So to join in on the fun, I’ve compiled a list of surprisingly good films aka movies that could have gone horribly wrong and ended up being pretty fantastic.

1) Zombieland

What We Were Expecting: Another rip-off of Shaun of the Dead.

What We Got: a TV show idea that no one wanted that became a hit movie that is now being turned into a TV show. Phew. Zombie comedies are few and far between, so how about a zombie/comedy/action/romantic/drama? Surprise! It works. And remember the #1 rule of Zombieland: good cardio.

2) Easy A

What We Were Expecting: Another teenage wronged but will outsmart everyone with revenge flick

What We Got: Emma Stone. And Patricia Clarkson. And Stanley Tucci. You know all those actors that show up and make even crappy movies a little better? Well they all showed up in this. Taking cues from and loosely-based on The Scarlet Letter, this is a smart film that really makes the usual teen films look stupid.

3) Cabin in the Woods

What We Were Expecting: A clichéd horror flick from the guy who usually writes TV shows.

What We Got: That “guy” also just directed and wrote one of the biggest movies ever made. Guy: Joss Whedon. Movie: The Avengers. This film only wanted you to think it was a cliché so it could laugh in that cliché’s face, give it a noogie and trap it in a locker. Haha cliché. It’s amazing that it could take the tired horror genre, make fun of it and still be funny, creepy and intense at the same time.

4) Safety Not Guaranteed

What We Were Expecting: not much. Didn’t I see this on Netflix? That’s the girl from Parks and Recreation right?

What We Got: I love coming across small films that generally no one has heard of and that surprise the hell out of me. Once was like that (a great film that could have easily been on this list) and so was this. Is it a sci-fi film? Is this guy just nuts? You will be guessing right until the last second. If you didn’t know Mark Duplass before this film, you won’t forget him after.

5) Monsters

What We Were Expecting: a low-budget Cloverfield-style monster flick

What We Got: a very character driven character study and sweet romantic movie that just happens to be set during an apocalypse with scary creatures. Made for little money and barely getting a blip of buzz in North America, it’s a cool look at the usual “monster movie” but from the impact it has on the surviving inhabitants.

6) Rise of the Planet of the Apes

What We Were Expecting: Another failed attempt at revamping the old Planet of the Apes movie franchise. Remember the Tim Burton film?

What We Got: Andy Serkis. This movie was going to live and die by one thing, the believability of its lead character Caesar. Sure, the CGI was good but would we care about a computer-animated ape for two hours? Big yes. The work of Serkis was amazing, giving a soul to a special effect. His journey and his performance are the reason this movie is getting a sequel and no one is remembering Burton’s previous ape attempt with Marky Mark.

Please share any movie you had low or no expectations of only to be blown away. Have a great April Fool’s Day. FYI – saran wrap over the toilet bowl…never really that funny.

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