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Mike P. Watch List 2021

WARNING: Many of these films are not for the faint of heart or younger audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.

Creating a watch list is a great way to keep a creative routine going, if you are in search of inspiration of course. If we are not making movies, we should probably be watching them. For this year of 2021, I will be publishing films that I watch throughout the year. Including the shows would be a bit extreme to keep track of. After all, entertainment should be entertaining, not a chore. This is for you whom might be in search of inspirational movies, maybe even just one diamond in the ruff you've never seen before. While revisiting some of these films, others I had never seen before. Fair warning; there's a few bad apples on this list, but everything placed on this list is there for a reason. If you are a xenophobe, please feel free to explore these titles and become something else.

TO WATCH anything you can't find, just click the film title link and IMDB should list the current viewing options. This list will be updated throughout the year as consistently as possible. I've added a rating system of (+) to indicate very good films. Think of it like a "required reading".

(+) = MUST SEE

Here's the rules I've set for myself in case anyone wants to follow along with me;

- Never watch the same thing twice. Always watch something else.

- Only movies. No episodic shows.

- Try to watch an average of one movie a day minimum. This is not required, just an experiment.

Enjoy the show!


01/01/2021 "Scrooged" (1988) +

Directed by Richard Donner Screenplay by Mitch Glazer and Michael O'Donoghue Based on the book A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Cinematography: Michael Chapman

Starring: Bill Murray and Karen Allen

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Fantasy


Directed by Terry Gilliam

Written by Michael Palin and Terry Gilliam

Cinematography: Peter Biziou

Starring: David Rappaport, Craig Warnock, Kenny Baker, Sean Connery, Shelly Duvall and John Cleese

Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

Directed by Steven Spielberg

Written by Steven Spielberg

Cinematography: Vilmos Zsigmond

Starring: Richard Dreyfuss, Melinda Dillon and Francois Truffaut

Genre: Drama, Sci-Fi

01/20/2021 "Tenet" (2020) +

Directed by Christopher Nolan

Written by Christopher Nolan

Cinematography: Hoyt Van Hoytema

Starring: John David Washington, Robert Pattinson and Elizabeth Debicki

Genre: Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller

01/21/2021 "Catch Me If You Can" (2002)

Directed by Steven Spielberg

Screenplay by Jeff Nathanson

Based on the biography Catch Me If You Can by Frank W. Abagnale and Stan Redding

Cinematography: Janusz Kaminski

Starring: Tom Hanks, Leonardo DiCaprio and Christopher Walkin

Genre: Biography, Crime, Drama


"The Thing" (1982) +

Directed by John Carpenter

Written by Bill Lancaster and John W. Campbell Jr.

Cinematography: Dean Kundey

Starring: Kurt Russel, Wilford Brimley and Keith David

Genre: Cosmic Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi


"The Grey" (2011) +

Directed by Joe Carnahan

Screenplay by Joe Carnahan and Ian Mackenzie Jeffers

Based on the short story Ghost Walker by Ian Mackenzie

Cinematography: Masanobu Takayanagi

Starring: Liam Neeson, Dermot Mulroney and Frank Grillo

Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama


Directed by Michael Ritchie

Written by Michael Leeson

Cinematography: Billy Williams

Starring: Robin Williams and Walter Matthau

Genre: Comedy, Crime, Drama


Directed by John Milius

Screenplay by John Milius and Oliver Stone

Based on the works of Robert E. Howard

Cinematography: Duke Callaghan

Starring: Arnold Schwartzenegger, James Earl Jones and Sandahl Bergman

Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy


Directed by Marcus Nispel

Screenplay by Thomas Dean Donnelly, Joshua Oppenheimer and Sean Hood

Based on the works of Robert E. Howard

Cinematography: Thomas Kloss

Starring: Jason Momoa, Stephen Lang and Rachel Nichols

Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy


Directed by Adam McKay

Screenplay by Charles Randolph and Adam McKay

Based on the biography The Big Short by Michael Lewis

Cinematography: Barry Ackroyd

Starring: Christian Bale, Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling

Genre: Biography, Comedy, Drama


Directed by Oliver Stone

Written by Stanley Weiser and Oliver Stone

Cinematography: Robert Richardson

Starring: Charlie Sheen, Michael Douglas and Tamara Tunie

Genre: Crime, Drama


Directed by Oliver Stone

Written by Allan Loeb and Stephen Schiff

Cinematography: Rodrigo Prieto

Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Michael Douglas and Carey Mulligan

Genre: Drama


Directed by Robert Zemeckis

Screenplay by Eric Roth

Based on the book Forrest Gump by Winston Groom

Cinematography: Don Burgess

Starring: Tom Hanks, Robin Wright and Gary Sinise

Genre: Drama, Romance


"War Dogs" (2016)

Directed by Todd Philips

Screenplay by Stephen Chin, Todd Philips and Jason Smilovic

Based on the Rolling Stone article Arms and the Dudes by Guy Lawson

Cinematography: Lawrence Sher

Starring: Jonah Hill, Miles Teller, Steve Lantz and Bradley Cooper

Genre: Biography, Comedy, Crime


Directed by Mike Flanagan

Screenplay by Mike Flanagan

Based on the novel Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

Cinematography: Michael Fimognari

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson and Kyliegh Curran

Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Horror


Directed by J. Blakeson

Written by J. Blakeson

Cinematography: Doug Emmett (never hire)

Starring: Rosamund Pike, Peter Dinklage, Eiza Gonzalez and Diana Wiest

Genre: Crime, Thriller


"Joker" (2019) +

Directed by Todd Philips

Screenplay by Todd Philips and Scott Silver

Based on characters created by Bob Kane, Bill Finger and Jerry Robinson

Cinematography: Lawrence Sher

Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Robert Di Niro and Zazie Beetz

Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller


Directed by Christopher Nolan

Screenplay by Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan

Based on characters created by Bob Kane

Cinematography: Wally Pfister

Starring: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman and Maggie Gyllenhaal

Genre: Action, Crime, Drama


Directed by Alex Garland

Screenplay by Alex Garland

Based on the book Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

Cinematography: Rob Hardy

Starring: Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Lee and Tessa Thompson

Genre: Cosmic Horror, Drama, Adventure


"The Void" (2016)

Directed by Jeremy Gillespie, Steven Kostanski

Written by Jeremy Gillespie, Steven Kostanski

Cinematography: Samy Inayeh

Starring: Aaron Poole, Kenneth Welsh and Daniel Fathers

Genre: Horror, Mystery, Sci-fi


Directed by Richard Stanley

Screenplay by Richard Stanley and Scarlett Amaris

Based on the short story The Colour Out of Space by H.P. Lovecraft

Cinematography: Steve Annis

Starring: Nicholas Cage, Joely Richardson and Madeleine Arthur

Genre: Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi


Directed by Huan Vu

Screenplay by Huan Vu

Based on the short story The Colour Out of Space by H.P. Lovecraft

Cinematography: Martin Kolbert

Starring: Paul Dorsch, Jürgen Heimüller and Ingo Heise

Genre: Horror, Mystery, Drama


"Resolution" (2012) +

Directed by Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead

Written by Justin Benson

Cinematography: Aaron Moorhead

Starring: Peter Cilella, Vinny Curran and Emily Montague

Genre: Horror, Drama, Mystery


Directed by Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead

Written by Justin Benson

Cinematography: Aaron Moorhead

Starring: Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead and Callie Hernandez

Genre: Horror, Drama, Fantasy


Directed by Ted Geoghegan

Written by Ted Geoghegan

Cinematography: Karim Hussain

Starring: Andrew Sensenig, Barbara Crampton and Larry Fessenden

Genre: Horror, Mystery


"The Mist" (2007)

Directed by Frank Darabont

Screenplay by Frank Darabont

Based on the novel The Mist by Stephen King

Cinematography: Rohn Schmidt

Starring: Thomas Jane, Marcia Gay Harden, Laurie Holden...

Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller


"Dagon" (2002)

Directed by Stuart Gordon

Screenplay by Dennis Paoli

Based on the short stories Dagon and The Shadow Over Innsmouth by H.P. Lovecraft

Cinematography: Carlos Suárez

Starring: Ezra Godden, Francisco Rabal and Raquel Meroño

Genre: Fantasy, Horror, Mystery


Directed by Paul W.S. Anderson

Written by Philip Eisner

Cinematography: Adrian Biddle

Starring: Laurence Fishburne, Sam Niel and Kathleen Quinlan

Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller


Directed by Emil Marczak

Written by Emil Marczak

Based on the book Millennial Hospitality by Charles James Hall

Cinematography: NOT LISTED

Starring: Charles James Hall and Marie Therese Hall

Genre: Sci-Fi


"Mirage Men" (2013) +

Directed by John Lundberg, Roland Denning and Kypros Kyprianou

Written by Mark Pilkington

Cinematography: Zillah Bowes and Grant Wakefield

Starring: Robert J. Duran, Richard Doty and Tracy Tormé

Genre: Documentary


Directed by Chad Calek

Written by Chad Calek

Cinematography: Justin Holstein

Starring: Chad Calek, Justin Holstein and Craig Powell

Genre: Documentary


Directed by Xavier Gens

Screenplay by Jesús Olmo and Eron Sheean

Based on the novel Cols Skin by Albert Sánchez Piñol

Cinematography: Daniel Aranyó

Starring: Ray Stevenson, David Oakes and Aura Garrido

Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy


Directed by Jeff Renfroe

Written by Jeff Renfroe, Svet Rouskov, Patrick Tarr and Padcal Trottier

Cinematography: Pierre Gill

Starring: Kevin Zegers, Laurence Fishburne and Bill Paxton

Genre: Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller


Directed by Justin Folk

Story by John Sullivan

Cinematography: Anton Seim, Andy Patch and Brandon Lippard

Starring: Adam Corolla and Dennis Prager

Genre: Documentary


Directed by James Wan

Screenplay by Chad Hayes, Carey W. Hayes

Based on the paranormal investigations of Ed Warren and Lorraine Warren

Cinematography: John R. Leonetti

Starring: Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson and Ron Livingston

Genre: Horror, Mystery, Thriller


"Sphere" (1998)

Directed by Barry Levinson

Adaptation by Kurt Wimmer

Screenplay by Stephen Hauser and Paul Attanasio

Based on the novel "Sphere" by Michael Crichton

Cinematography: Adam Greenberg

Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Sharon Stone, Samuel L. Jackson, Peter Coyote and Liev Schreiber

Genre: Action, Mystery, Sci-Fi


Directed by Mike Ahern and Enda Loughman

Written by Mike Ahern, Enda Loughman, Demian Fox and Maeve Higgins

Cinematography: James Mather

Starring: Maeve Higgins, Barry Ward and Will Forte

Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Horror


Directed by Josef Rusnak

Screenplay by Josef Rusnak and Ravel Centeno-Rodriguez

Based on the book "The Thirteenth Floor" by Daniel F. Galouye

Cinematography: Wedigo von Schultzendorff

Starring: Craig Bierko, Gretchen Mol and Armen Mueller-Stahl

Genre: Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller


Directed by James Wan

Written by Leigh Whannell

Cinematography: John R. Leonetti and David M. Brewer

Starring: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Ty Simpkins, Barbara Hershey and Lin Shaye

Genre: Horror, Mystery, Thriller


Directed by James Wan

Based on characters created by Leigh Whannell

Written by Leigh Whannell and James Wan

Cinematography: John R. Leonetti

Starring: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Ty Simpkins, Barbara Hershey and Lin Shaye

Genre: Horror, Mystery, Thriller


Directed by Scott Derrickson

Screenplay by Jon Spaihts, Scott Derrickson and C. Robert Cargill

Based on the Marvel comics by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko

Cinematography: Ben Davis

Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mads Mikkelsen and Tilda Swinton

Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy


Directed by Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig (as The Spierig Brothers)

Screenplay by Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig (as The Spierig Brothers)

Based on the short story "All You Zombies" by Robert A. Heinlein

Cinematography: Ben Nott

Starring: Ethan Hawke, Sarah Snook and Noah Taylor

Genre: Action, Drama, Sci-Fi


Directed by Peter Hyams

Screenplay by Peter Hyams

Based on the novel "2010: Odyssey Two" by Arthur C. Clarke

Cinematography: Peter Hyams

Starring: Roy Scheider, John Lithgow, Helen Mirren and Bob Balaban

Genre: Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi


Directed by James Ward Byrkit

Written by James Ward Byrkit and Alex Manugian

Cinematography: Arlene Muller and Nic Sadler

Starring: Emily Baldoni, Maury Sterling, Nicholas Brendon, Lorene Scafaria, Elizabeth Gracen, Hugo Armstrong, Alex Manugian and Lauren Maher

Genre: Drama, Horror, Mystery


Directed by Jeff Nichols

Written by Jeff Nichols

Cinematography: Adam Stone

Starring: Michael Shannon, Jessica Chastain and Shea Whigham

Genre: Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi


Directed by Lance Mungia

Written by NOT LISTED

Cinematography NOT LISTED

Starring: Russell Targ, Skip Atwater, Daryl Bem, Bernard Carr, Karil Daniels and Uri Geller

Genre: Documentary, Biography, History


Directed by Terry Gilliam

Screenplay by Terry Gilliam and Tony Grisono

Based on the novel "Don Quixote" written by Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra

Cinematography: Nicola Pecorini, José Luis Ferrer

Starring: Adam Driver, Jonathan Pryce and Joana Ribeiro

Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Drama


Directed by Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe

Written by Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe

Cinematography: Louis Pepe

Starring: Terry Gilliam, Johnny Depp and Jeff Bridges

Genre: Documentary


"Ad Astra" (2019)

Directed by James Gray

Written by James Gray and Ethan Gross

Cinematography: Hoyte Van Hoytema

Starring: Brad Pitt, Tommy Lee Jones and Ruth Negga

Genre: Adventure, Drama, Mystery


Directed by Walter Hill

Screenplay by John Milius and Larry Gross

Based on the true story of Geronimo

Cinematography: Lloyd Ahern II

Starring: Jason Patric, Gene Hackman, Robert Duvall, Wes Studi and Matt Damon

Genre: Drama, History, Western


Written by Eric Roth

Cinematography: Robert Richardson

Starring: Matt Damon, Angelina Jolie and William Hurt

Genre: Drama, History, Thriller


Directed by Louis Leterrier

Screenplay by Zak Penn

Based on the Marvel comics by Stan Lee and Zack Kirby

Cinematography: Peter Menzies Jr.

Starring: Edward Norton, Liv Tyler, Tim Roth and William Hurt

Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-fi


"Lockout" (2012)

Directed by James Mather and Stephen Saint Leger

Screenplay by James Mather, Stephen Saint Leger and Luc Besson

Based on "Escape From New York" by John Carpenter and Nick Castle

Cinematography: James Mather

Starring: Guy Pearce, Maggie Grace Joseph Gilgun and Peter Stormare

Genre: Action, Sci-fi, Thriller


Directed by Clint Eastwood

Screenplay by Jason Hall

Based on the book "American Sniper" by Chris Kyle, Scott McEwan and Jim DeFelice

Cinematography: Tom Stern

Starring: Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller and Kyle Gallner

Genre: Action, Biography, Drama


Directed by Takeshi Nozue

Screenplay by Takashi Hasegawa

Based on the series created by Hironobu Sakaguchi

Art Director: Bela Brozsek

Starring: Aaron Paul, Sean Bean and Lena Headey

Genre: Animation, Action, Adventure


Directed by Stephen Hopkins

Written by William Goldman

Based on actual events

Cinematography: Vilmos Zsigmond

Starring: Val Kilmer, Michael Douglas and Tom Wilkinson

Genre: Action, Drama, Thriller