Thursday Movie Picks: Coming Home

The final theme of 2016 from Wandering Through The Shelves is all about coming home. This is another hard one because I know I've used a lot of movies that would fall into this category previously. But I'm going to try to showcase a few wonderful indies that deserve to be seen.

1) Hello I Must Be Going

Amy is going through a divorce and ends up having to move back in with her parents. This features a brilliant performance by Melanie Lynskey. 

2) Martha Marcy May Marlene

Martha goes home to her sister's after spending a few years in a cult. Brilliant performance by Elizabeth Olsen and is so quietly creepy. 

3) King of California

Instead of children going home to their parents, this one is about a father that goes home after being in a psychiatric facility. He then tries to convince his daughter there's gold buried under a Costco. 


  1. I haven't seen any of these, but I've meaning to watch Martha Marcy May Marlene for a while.

  2. Good picks, why is it that coming home films are in the main such a gloomy lot?

    Melanie Lynskey is great in Hello but it's a dark film that I can't see myself watching again. Same goes for Martha-which I finally saw just within the last month. Hard to believe with as compelling as she is that Elizabeth Olsen is the sister of those awful twins. A very heartfelt performance and she was riveting but I didn't enjoy the film.

    I haven't seen King of California but it sound worth seeking out.

    This week turned out to be easy for me with three popping into my head immediately.

    The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)-Three members of the armed forces strike up a friendship on a return flight to their home town at the end of WWII. The film follows their three stories, Al (Fredric March) an upper middle class banker, Fred (Dana Andrews) a poor but hardworking clerk and Homer (Harold Russell) who has lost his arms during the war, and their difficult readjustment to a life that now seems foreign to them. This is loaded with brilliant performances by the entire cast, especially Myrna Loy as March’s patient wife and was the winner of multiple Oscars including Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Russell-he only made a few film appearances but he’ll tear your heart out) and Best Actor (March-though Andrews is the standout male performance). A great film.

    The Myth of Fingerprints (1997)-After a three year estrangement four adult children, including Julianne Moore & Noah Wyle, return to the Maine home of their parents for Thanksgiving. Their mother Lena (Blythe Danner) is a gentle soul hoping for a pleasant holiday but their remote, stern father Hal (Roy Scheider) remains closed off and the gathering is fraught with tensions.

    Welcome Home, Roxy Carmichael (1990)-Quirky comedy/drama of a small town preparing for the return of hometown movie star Roxy Carmichael. The person who is most anxious for her return is young orphan Dinky Bossetti (Winona Ryder) who is sure that Roxy is her birth mother and is secretly planning to claim her as her own on her arrival.

    Tribute Bonus: With the incredibly sad passing of mother & daughter legends Debbie Reynold and Carrie Fisher within the last two days I wanted to include at least one of their films in memoriam, I wanted to do Bundle of Joy since Debbie was expecting Carrie when she made it (the ultimate costarring vehicle!) but the subject matter wasn’t right for the theme. This is the only one that really fit…happily it’s both a good film and a charming comedy:

    The Pleasure of His Company (1961)-“Pogo” Poole (Fred Astaire), a continental gadabout returns unannounced to San Francisco, his original home, for the wedding of his daughter Jessica (Debbie Reynolds) to cattle rancher Roger Henderson (Tab Hunter). Arriving at the palatial home of his ex-wife Kate (Lilli Palmer) and her present husband Jim Dougherty (Gary Merrill) when no one is home. He basically takes over the joint ensconcing himself in the best room and overtaking their servant Toy (Harold Fong). Kate, knowing what Pogo is like is leery or his return at first but eventually is lulled into letting him stay since Jessica wants him at the wedding so much. Kate’s sly father (Charlie Ruggles-in a highly enjoyable performance) who sees right through Pogo as well as Jim and Roger are less yielding especially when Pogo turns up the charm on Jessica and tries to convince her to take off with him to see the world rather than marry. Many humorous complications ensue capped by a mad dash to the airport. Breezy comedy played by experts.

    1. I haven't seen any of those. Hopefully they're lighter than my picks, which like you said are quite depressing.

    2. Well Pleasure is a light comedy that will lift your spirits and Roxy Carmichael a quirky mix of drama and comedy.

      Best Years (this one is an essential so since you haven't seen it I'd say it should be first) is more serious but it's a very balanced portrait of life so gladness and sorrow are mixed together seamlessly. The dark one is Myth of Fingerprints which could compete with any film in the heaviness department.

  3. 3 amazing films as I think King of California is just underrated as it feature Evan and Michael Douglas in great performances.

    1. I have it on DVD but I haven't watched it in years. I might have to put it in again.

  4. These sound quite good although I haven't seen any. The last one sounds quirky, funny because of the gold under Costco. I have so many to watch

    1. They're all great films. I plan on giving King of California a watch again.

  5. LOVE Martha Marcy May Marlene for the performances especially. Still need to see Hello I Must be Going (I KNOW I KNOW).

  6. I haven't seen any of these!!!!!

  7. Seen all except the first one, so that's one to look out for.


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