Well, October is over, so back to our "regularly-scheduled programming" (read: non-scary) on Thursday Movie Picks. This week: Movies centered around music. I had to re-pick this week as I missed the note on there being no films based on real-life people, so... here goes!
That Thing You Do! (Tom Hanks, 1996) You'd think Tom Hanks would have directed more after this perfectly entertaining film about a 60's band's rise to the top. He's even great in it as the band's big-label manager. Tom Everett Scott, Jonathan Schaech, Steve Zahn, and Ethan Embry make for great distinctive personalities as the band members, and Liv Tyler makes an impression as "The Girl". And the soundtrack is to DIE. Long Live The Oneders!
Frank (Lenny Abrahamson, 2014) This isn't a GREAT film, but it does contain what is possibly Michael Fassbender's best performance as the giant-head wearing musical genius Frank, and a great performance from Maggie Gyllenhall as one of his band members - a much more typical role for her, but damn if she isn't PERFECT. The music is at points extremely weird, but also kind of perfect for what it is, and often laugh-out-loud funny. Domnhall Gleeson makes for a perfectly agreeable narrator, and the film is a good watch. But it doesn't have much staying power outside of Fassbender's performance. Also: He has a surprisingly good singing voice, if not "good" in a traditional sense.