In the wake of the recent COVID-19 crisis, a majority of the population (with the exception of the extraordinary essential workers) have found themselves inside. 


Madeline Brennan

Rain Man’s page on the app Letterboxd, which you should follow the author on.

Madeline Brennan, Technology/Enertainment Editor

As a film junkie, I’ve found myself using this extra time to get through movies I’ve always wanted to see but never gotten around to. Before I give my recommendations, I would suggest downloading the app Letterboxd, a fun movie review app, to chronicle your film watching during this time. And follow me! (@madelinebrennan)



  • Outbreak (1995)


The Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Morgan Freeman, Cuba Gooding Jr.

The Premise: When a dangerous virus threatens the well-being of all humanity, Colonel Sam Daniels (Hoffman) rushes to find the source of the virus and stop it in its tracks, but not without some pushback by those he thought he could trust.

Rating: ⅗ stars

The Review: Though ultimately a cheesy and pretty dated film, I’ve found that films like Outbreak, in which the characters are experiencing a much scarier and dangerous version of what the world is going through now is oddly comforting. Plus, the general campiness of this film provides the viewer with a lot of laughs.



  • Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)


The Stars: Tom Holland, Robert Downey Jr., Marisa Tomei

The Premise: Average high schooler Peter Parker finds his world turned upside down when he develops superhuman abilities that make him the Spiderman. Struggling with the mundane everyday tasks of a teenager and the extraordinary responsibilities of a hero, Peter has to learn how to make his own way in the world.

Rating: ⅗ stars

The Review: I like all of the high school scenes but the subplot with Michael Keaton isn’t at all interesting, and wouldn’t Bryan Cranston have made a better choice than Keaton? Outwardly normal suburban dad who’s secretly involved with criminal activity? Come on, Marvel!



  • A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019)


The Stars: Matthew Rhys, Tom Hanks, Chris Cooper

The Premise: An investigative journalist disillusioned with life is assigned to do a fluff piece on Mr. Rogers about heroes. What could possibly go wrong?

The Rating: ⅖ stars

The Review: I want to punch Mr. Rogers in the face. Also, the marketing of the film leads audiences to believe that Mr. Rogers is the leading role; he isn’t. 



  • Rain Man (1988)


The Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Tom Cruise

The Premise: When spoiled rich kid Charlie Babbit discovers he has an austisic savant brother named Raymond after their father’s death, he makes a desperate attempt to get some of the inheritance money that was left entirely to Raymond. Along the way, the brothers form an unbreakable bond.

The Rating:

The Review: This is a delightful film about brotherly love that also manages to be incredibly funny and engaging. While there’s definitely a discussion to be had around the film’s depiction of autism and it’s real life impact, both Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise lead the film with incredible performances. Note: this is in no way, however, an endorsement of known cultist Tom Cruise.



  • Philadelphia (1993)


The Stars: Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington, Antonio Banderas

The Premise: After being unjustly fired from a law firm, AIDS patient/successful attorney Andrew Beckett sues his former coworkers, citing homophobia as the primary reason for this firing. Bringing on a former rival to represent him, Andrew fights for equal rights, and his life.

The Rating:

The Review: A heartwarming film with great performances by Hanks and Washington. The last few minutes were just heartbreaking. You can definitely understand why Hanks won the Oscar for Best Actor.