Alternatively known as:
My Definitive Guide for the Best Outdoor Adventure Family Movies To Watch During Quarantine When Your Family Can’t Seem To Decide On A Movie Because Your Mom Just Wants To See Daniel Craig And Your Brother Just Wants To Use The XBOX But He Can’t Because It Is Family Movie Night
By AMELIA ELDRIDGE
Preweek: As we find ourselves at the end of week two of the quarantine in the Eldridge household, patiences are already running thin, and the tasks we were once able to complete with some mild degree of sanity and civility have now become pressure-cooked bombs. Choosing the movie for family movie nights – a debilitating undertaking even during normal times – have now become all-out-war, with bribery, fraudulent veto system, and household hierarchies all making an appearance each night. In an effort to quell this, I managed to convince my family to each have their nights to pick a movie – with the condition that they all had to take place in the good ‘ol outdoors.
Thoughts after the week: I would call this week a success – we watched many movies with different genres and storylines (or lack thereof), and the outdoor adventure of them all definitely seemed to lift all of our spirits! Here are all of the movies we watched and how we rated them (out of 5 points)!
My Pick – Day 1: Wild (Rating – 2.5/5)
I was super excited for this one as I LOVE the book (Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed), and have reread it numerous times whenever I miss California and am itching for a good backpacking trip. The movie, however, fell a bit short of my expectations, with many of the small aspects that made the book so wonderful left out entirely. Perhaps a book that includes little external dialogue due to the solo nature of her trek and relies heavily on the reader’s imagination with the surreal landscape descriptions is too hard to adapt to movie form?
- Quote from my brother – “This is kinda like Man Vs. Wild, but like not…”
- Watch if: you were supposed to go on the Outdoor Adventures Spring Break backpacking trip and now you’re sadddddddd 🙁
My Mom’s Pick – Day 2: Into the Wild (Rating – 4/5)
Classic movie based on a classic book based on classic & true account of one man’s journey into the Alaskan wilderness. Haunting and sorrow-filled, but also full of beauty and adventure.
Extra points: because the protagonist Chris McCandless is played by my #1 actor-crush Emile Hirsch, who also plays Speed Racer in my all-time favorite movie, Speed Racer.
Points taken off: because I remember crying in class watching this for the first time in 10th grade social psych
My Brother’s Pick – Day 3: Free Solo (Rating – 5/5)
Wow. This documentary from National Geographic about climbing up Yosemite’s El Capitan quite literally took my breath away.
Only watch if: You aren’t scared of heights, you are ready to soon be overcome with the sole goal of travelling to Yosemite, and you won’t be sad afterwards that you can only do ½ a pullup.
Quote from my mom – “His mother should not have let him do that”
My Mom’s Pick – Day 4: The Biggest Little Farm (Rating – 5/5)
- Ok I know what you’re thinking – its a PG documentary about starting a farm with a cover picture that looks like Charlotte’s Web. But I promise you that I was skeptical too and IT WAS SO SO DELIGHTFUL and the perfect family movie. Even my high-school brother who quite-nearly had to be threatened and tied down to watch this movie at the beginning reluctantly admitted after all that he really liked it.
- It gets all the points: because it is a really captivating and well-shot movie that feels as though you’re watching a Planet Earth-style documentary and makes you want to go start a farm.
My Pick – Day 5: Hunt for the Wilderpeople (Rating – 3.3/5 )
Super quirky but lovely Kiwi indie film. Made me laugh and everyone enjoyed it.
Bonus fact: it has 97% on Rotten Tomatoes ™
My Brother’s Pick – Day 6: 127 Hours (Rating – ?/5)
My mom made us shut it off 12 minutes in because it was “too tense already”, so I can’t say much for this one. :/ We switched to Kung Fu Panda
Quote from my mom – “Turn it off now, Amelia”
My Pick – Day 7: The Barkley’s Marathon – The Race That Eats Its Young (Rating – 4.5/5)
This movie – a documentary on Netflix about a crazy US cult-like ultramarathon that has had only 10 finishers in its first 25 years – was absolutely berserk and funny in such an unexpected way. I can’t say much more than that. We listened/watched it while driving up to Tahoe and it was the perfect car entertainment.
1 of the 100s of quirks about the marathon: there’s a bugler on hand to play taps for racers who drop out
About the Author:
Name: Amelia Eldridge
Year in School: Junior
Major: Neuroscience + Public Health
Hometown: Oakland, CA
Favorite Outdoor Activity: Anything in the water or in the mountains!
Favorite Camp Food: Trail Mix
Ideal Outdoor Trip Destination: Koroyanitu National Park, Fiji
If you were stranded on a desert island, what/who would you bring with you: Bear Grylls and some chex mix