Feel Good INDIE Films

by gonova | created - 26 Apr 2012 | updated - 10 Oct 2014 | Public

A collection of the best indie(/like) films around. A work in progress.

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1. Frank (II) (2014)

R | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
75 Metascore

Jon, a young wanna-be musician, discovers he's bitten off more than he can chew when he joins an eccentric pop band led by the mysterious and enigmatic Frank.

Director: Lenny Abrahamson | Stars: Michael Fassbender, Domhnall Gleeson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Moira Brooker

Votes: 63,808 | Gross: $0.64M

2. Ruby Sparks (2012)

R | 104 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
67 Metascore

A novelist struggling with writer's block finds romance in a most unusual way: by creating a female character he thinks will love him, then willing her into existence.

Directors: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris | Stars: Paul Dano, Zoe Kazan, Annette Bening, Antonio Banderas

Votes: 85,959 | Gross: $2.54M

3. The Way Way Back (2013)

PG-13 | 103 min | Comedy, Drama

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
68 Metascore

Shy 14-year-old Duncan goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend's daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.

Directors: Nat Faxon, Jim Rash | Stars: Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Allison Janney, AnnaSophia Robb

Votes: 125,124 | Gross: $21.50M

4. The Spectacular Now (2013)

R | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
82 Metascore

A hard-partying high school senior's philosophy on life changes when he meets the not-so-typical "nice girl."

Director: James Ponsoldt | Stars: Miles Teller, Shailene Woodley, Kyle Chandler, Jennifer Jason Leigh

Votes: 121,154 | Gross: $6.85M

5. Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

R | 122 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
81 Metascore

After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.

Director: David O. Russell | Stars: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver

Votes: 581,177 | Gross: $132.09M

6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)

PG-13 | 102 min | Drama, Romance

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
67 Metascore

An introvert freshman is taken under the wings of two seniors who welcome him to the real world.

Director: Stephen Chbosky | Stars: Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, Ezra Miller, Paul Rudd

Votes: 391,448 | Gross: $17.74M

7. Lars and the Real Girl (2007)

PG-13 | 106 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
70 Metascore

A delusional young man strikes up an unconventional relationship with a doll he finds on the Internet.

Director: Craig Gillespie | Stars: Ryan Gosling, Emily Mortimer, Paul Schneider, R.D. Reid

Votes: 123,823 | Gross: $5.97M

8. Win Win (2011)

R | 106 min | Comedy, Drama, Sport

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
75 Metascore

A struggling lawyer and volunteer wrestling coach's chicanery comes back to haunt him when the teenage grandson of the client he has double-crossed comes into his life.

Director: Tom McCarthy | Stars: Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan, Jeffrey Tambor, Bobby Cannavale

Votes: 50,288 | Gross: $10.18M

9. It's Kind of a Funny Story (2010)

PG-13 | 101 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
63 Metascore

A clinically depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward.

Directors: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck | Stars: Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, Dana DeVestern

Votes: 116,905 | Gross: $6.35M

10. Submarine (2010)

R | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
76 Metascore

15-year-old Oliver Tate has two objectives: To lose his virginity before his next birthday, and to extinguish the flame between his mother and an ex-lover who has resurfaced in her life.

Director: Richard Ayoade | Stars: Craig Roberts, Sally Hawkins, Paddy Considine, Noah Taylor

Votes: 74,018 | Gross: $0.47M

11. A Bag of Hammers (2011)

Not Rated | 85 min | Comedy, Drama

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
50 Metascore

Two misfit best friends incapable of growing up, whose direction is tested by an abandoned child worn beyond his years. Together they invent the family they've always needed.

Director: Brian Crano | Stars: Jason Ritter, Jake Sandvig, Chandler Canterbury, Rebecca Hall

Votes: 2,638

12. Charlie Bartlett (2007)

R | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
54 Metascore

A rich kid becomes the self-appointed psychiatrist to the student body of his new high school.

Director: Jon Poll | Stars: Anton Yelchin, Robert Downey Jr., Hope Davis, Kat Dennings

Votes: 58,816 | Gross: $3.95M

13. Crazy, Stupid, Love. (2011)

PG-13 | 118 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.4
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68 Metascore

A middle-aged husband's life changes dramatically when his wife asks him for a divorce. He seeks to rediscover his manhood with the help of a newfound friend, Jacob, learning to pick up girls at bars.

Directors: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa | Stars: Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone

Votes: 408,747 | Gross: $84.35M

14. 50/50 (2011)

R | 100 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.7
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72 Metascore

Inspired by a true story, a comedy centered on a 27-year-old guy who learns of his cancer diagnosis, and his subsequent struggle to beat the disease.

Director: Jonathan Levine | Stars: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, Anna Kendrick, Bryce Dallas Howard

Votes: 287,442 | Gross: $35.01M

15. (500) Days of Summer (2009)

PG-13 | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.7
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76 Metascore

An offbeat romantic comedy about a woman who doesn't believe true love exists, and the young man who falls for her.

Director: Marc Webb | Stars: Zooey Deschanel, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Geoffrey Arend, Chloë Grace Moretz

Votes: 411,982 | Gross: $32.39M

16. The Art of Getting By (2011)

PG-13 | 83 min | Drama, Romance

6.6
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36 Metascore

George, a lonely and fatalistic teen who has made it all the way to his senior year without ever having done a real day of work, is befriended by Sally, a popular but complicated girl who recognizes in him a kindred spirit.

Director: Gavin Wiesen | Stars: Freddie Highmore, Emma Roberts, Michael Angarano, Sasha Spielberg

Votes: 50,347 | Gross: $1.43M

17. The Squid and the Whale (2005)

R | 81 min | Comedy, Drama

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
82 Metascore

Follows two young boys dealing with their parents' divorce in Brooklyn in the 1980s.

Director: Noah Baumbach | Stars: Owen Kline, Jeff Daniels, Laura Linney, Jesse Eisenberg

Votes: 65,492 | Gross: $7.36M

18. Like Crazy (2011)

PG-13 | 86 min | Drama, Romance

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
68 Metascore

A British college student falls for an American student, only to be separated from him when she's banned from the U.S. after overstaying her visa.

Director: Drake Doremus | Stars: Felicity Jones, Anton Yelchin, Jennifer Lawrence, Charlie Bewley

Votes: 52,076 | Gross: $3.41M

19. Away We Go (2009)

R | 98 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.1
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58 Metascore

A couple who is expecting their first child travel around the U.S. in order to find a perfect place to start their family. Along the way, they have misadventures and find fresh connections with an assortment of relatives and old friends who just might help them discover "home" on their own terms for the first time.

Director: Sam Mendes | Stars: John Krasinski, Maya Rudolph, Allison Janney, Carmen Ejogo

Votes: 47,839 | Gross: $9.45M

20. Vincent will Meer (2010)

Unrated | 96 min | Drama

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
39 Metascore

A young man suffering from Tourette's syndrome absconds from an institution with two other inhabitants to travel to Italy to fulfill his mother's last wish.

Director: Ralf Huettner | Stars: Florian David Fitz, Karoline Herfurth, Heino Ferch, Katharina Müller-Elmau

Votes: 4,721

21. An Education (2009)

PG-13 | 100 min | Drama

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
85 Metascore

A coming-of-age story about a teenage girl in 1960s suburban London, and how her life changes with the arrival of a playboy nearly twice her age.

Director: Lone Scherfig | Stars: Carey Mulligan, Peter Sarsgaard, Alfred Molina, Olivia Williams

Votes: 117,860 | Gross: $12.57M

22. Igby Goes Down (2002)

R | 98 min | Comedy, Drama

7.0
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72 Metascore

A young man's peculiar upbringing renders him unable to competently cope with the struggle of growing up.

Director: Burr Steers | Stars: Kieran Culkin, Susan Sarandon, Jeff Goldblum, Claire Danes

Votes: 30,025 | Gross: $4.68M

23. Breakfast on Pluto (2005)

R | 128 min | Comedy, Drama

7.3
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59 Metascore

In the 1970s, a young trans woman, Patrick "Kitten" Braden, comes of age by leaving her Irish town for London, in part to look for her mother and in part because her gender identity is beyond the town's understanding.

Director: Neil Jordan | Stars: Cillian Murphy, Morgan Jones, Eva Birthistle, Liam Neeson

Votes: 18,548 | Gross: $0.83M

24. Adventureland (2009)

R | 107 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
76 Metascore

In the summer of 1987, a college graduate takes a 'nowhere' job at his local amusement park, only to find it's the perfect course to get him prepared for the real world.

Director: Greg Mottola | Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Ryan Reynolds, Kelsey Ford

Votes: 139,872 | Gross: $16.03M

25. Boy A (2007)

R | 102 min | Drama

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
75 Metascore

The story of a young Jack, newly released from serving a prison sentence for a violent crime he committed as a child.

Director: John Crowley | Stars: Andrew Garfield, Peter Mullan, Shaun Evans, Siobhan Finneran

Votes: 34,609 | Gross: $0.11M

26. Never Let Me Go (2010)

R | 103 min | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
69 Metascore

The lives of three friends, from their early school days into young adulthood, when the reality of the world they live in comes knocking.

Director: Mark Romanek | Stars: Keira Knightley, Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield, Izzy Meikle-Small

Votes: 120,716 | Gross: $2.43M

27. Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

R | 101 min | Comedy, Drama

7.8
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80 Metascore

A family determined to get their young daughter into the finals of a beauty pageant take a cross-country trip in their VW bus.

Directors: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris | Stars: Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Greg Kinnear, Abigail Breslin

Votes: 384,393 | Gross: $59.89M

28. Hesher (2010)

R | 106 min | Comedy, Drama

7.1
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45 Metascore

A young boy has lost his mother and is losing touch with his father and the world around him. Then he meets Hesher who manages to make his life even more chaotic.

Director: Spencer Susser | Stars: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Devin Brochu, Natalie Portman, Rainn Wilson

Votes: 46,435 | Gross: $0.38M

29. Eagle vs Shark (2007)

R | 88 min | Comedy, Romance

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
55 Metascore

Eagle vs Shark is the tale of two socially awkward misfits and the strange ways they try to find love; through revenge on high-school bullies, burgers, and video games.

Director: Taika Waititi | Stars: Loren Taylor, Jemaine Clement, Craig Hall, Joel Tobeck

Votes: 18,505 | Gross: $0.22M

30. Shame (2011)

NC-17 | 101 min | Drama

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
72 Metascore

A man's carefully cultivated private life is disrupted when his sister arrives for an indefinite stay.

Director: Steve McQueen | Stars: Michael Fassbender, Carey Mulligan, James Badge Dale, Lucy Walters

Votes: 160,194 | Gross: $4.00M

31. Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist (2008)

PG-13 | 90 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

6.7
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64 Metascore

High school student Nick O'Leary, member of the Queercore band The Jerk Offs, meets college-bound Norah Silverberg when she asks him to be her boyfriend for five minutes.

Director: Peter Sollett | Stars: Michael Cera, Kat Dennings, Aaron Yoo, Rafi Gavron

Votes: 79,529 | Gross: $31.49M

32. Into the Wild (2007)

R | 148 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama

8.1
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73 Metascore

After graduating from Emory University, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness. Along the way, Christopher encounters a series of characters that shape his life.

Director: Sean Penn | Stars: Emile Hirsch, Vince Vaughn, Catherine Keener, Marcia Gay Harden

Votes: 478,244 | Gross: $18.35M

33. Middle of Nowhere (2008)

R | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

6.5
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An irresponsible mother blows her eldest daughter's college fund on her youngest daughter's modeling campaign.

Director: John Stockwell | Stars: Eva Amurri Martino, Anton Yelchin, Willa Holland, Susan Sarandon

Votes: 3,202

34. Roger Dodger (2002)

R | 106 min | Comedy, Drama

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
75 Metascore

After breaking up with his lover and boss, a smooth-talking man takes his teenaged nephew out on the town in search of sex.

Director: Dylan Kidd | Stars: Campbell Scott, Jesse Eisenberg, Isabella Rossellini, Elizabeth Berkley

Votes: 15,863 | Gross: $1.27M

35. Beginners (2010)

R | 105 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
81 Metascore

A young man is rocked by two announcements from his elderly father: that he has terminal cancer, and that he has a young male lover.

Director: Mike Mills | Stars: Ewan McGregor, Christopher Plummer, Mélanie Laurent, Goran Visnjic

Votes: 79,536 | Gross: $5.79M

36. Sunshine Cleaning (2008)

R | 91 min | Comedy, Drama

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
61 Metascore

In order to raise the tuition to send her young son to private school, a mom starts an unusual business -- a biohazard removal/crime scene clean-up service -- with her unreliable sister.

Director: Christine Jeffs | Stars: Amy Adams, Emily Blunt, Alan Arkin, Jason Spevack

Votes: 63,920 | Gross: $12.06M

37. Brick (2005)

R | 110 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
72 Metascore

A teenage loner pushes his way into the underworld of a high school crime ring to investigate the disappearance of his ex-girlfriend.

Director: Rian Johnson | Stars: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Lukas Haas, Emilie de Ravin, Meagan Good

Votes: 90,098 | Gross: $2.06M

38. Paper Man (2009)

R | 110 min | Comedy, Drama

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
37 Metascore

A washed-up writer forms an unlikely friendship with a teenager from Long Island.

Directors: Kieran Mulroney, Michele Mulroney | Stars: Jeff Daniels, Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds, Lisa Kudrow

Votes: 16,517 | Gross: $0.02M

39. Weekend (II) (2011)

Not Rated | 97 min | Drama, Romance

7.7
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81 Metascore

After a drunken house party with his straight mates, Russell heads out to a gay club. Just before closing time he picks up Glen but what's expected to be just a one-night stand becomes something else, something special.

Director: Andrew Haigh | Stars: Tom Cullen, Chris New, Jonathan Race, Laura Freeman

Votes: 22,760 | Gross: $0.46M

40. Garden State (2004)

R | 102 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.5
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67 Metascore

A quietly troubled young man returns home for his mother's funeral after being estranged from his family for a decade.

Director: Zach Braff | Stars: Zach Braff, Peter Sarsgaard, Natalie Portman, Ian Holm

Votes: 194,973 | Gross: $26.78M

41. Howl (2010)

R | 84 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

6.8
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63 Metascore

As Allen Ginsberg talks about his life and art, his most famous poem is illustrated in animation while the obscenity trial of the work is dramatized.

Directors: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman | Stars: James Franco, Todd Rotondi, Jon Prescott, Aaron Tveit

Votes: 11,489 | Gross: $0.62M

42. Rocket Science (2007)

R | 101 min | Comedy, Drama

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
73 Metascore

Looking for answers to life's big questions, a stuttering boy joins his high school debate team.

Director: Jeffrey Blitz | Stars: Reece Thompson, Anna Kendrick, Nicholas D'Agosto, Utkarsh Ambudkar

Votes: 12,129 | Gross: $0.71M

43. Dan in Real Life (2007)

PG-13 | 98 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
65 Metascore

A widower finds out the woman he fell in love with is his brother's girlfriend.

Director: Peter Hedges | Stars: Steve Carell, Juliette Binoche, Dane Cook, Alison Pill

Votes: 90,355 | Gross: $47.64M

44. City Island (2009)

PG-13 | 104 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.4
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66 Metascore

The Rizzos, a family who doesn't share their habits, aspirations, and careers with one another, find their delicate web of lies disturbed by the arrival of a young ex-con (Strait) brought ... See full summary »

Director: Raymond De Felitta | Stars: Andy Garcia, Julianna Margulies, Steven Strait, Emily Mortimer

Votes: 28,443 | Gross: $6.67M

45. Lymelife (2008)

R | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.0
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64 Metascore

A family unit begins to bow under the pressure of a failing marriage.

Director: Derick Martini | Stars: Rory Culkin, Alec Baldwin, Jill Hennessy, Emma Roberts

Votes: 13,182 | Gross: $0.43M

46. Stranger Than Fiction (2006)

PG-13 | 113 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

7.6
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67 Metascore

An I.R.S. auditor suddenly finds himself the subject of narration only he can hear: narration that begins to affect his entire life, from his work, to his love-interest, to his death.

Director: Marc Forster | Stars: Will Ferrell, Emma Thompson, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah

Votes: 198,256 | Gross: $40.14M

47. Daydream Nation (2010)

R | 98 min | Drama, Romance

6.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
57 Metascore

A city girl who moves to a small town and becomes entangled in a love triangle between her high school teacher and a stoner classmate.

Director: Michael Goldbach | Stars: Kat Dennings, Reece Thompson, Andie MacDowell, Josh Lucas

Votes: 11,330