Not Your Grandfather’s Movies

by Jacob Lewis, Opinions writer

The generational gap between kids and their grandparents can be a difficult obstacle to creating close relationships — it’s been a while since our grandparents were young, and what was popular then has long since fallen out of style. Films are one point of connection that can transcend generational boundaries and allow you to spend quality time with your grandparents.

However, many of our grandparents’ favorite films are old and dated, and many of us like new films that our grandparents may not. A movie that both the youth and the elderly can enjoy is a special find. 

Here are four timeless gems that will appeal to any age group, young or old. They are entertaining to watch and fascinating to discuss when you finish. So go grab the popcorn and turn on one of these movies for a time that you and your grandparents will both cherish as a fantastic bonding experience.

1: Rear Window

Many grandparents might have already seen this classic from 1954, albeit way back in the olden days. Legendary filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock, who also directed classics like “Vertigo,” “Psycho” and “The Birds,” directs this tale of a man named L.B. “Jeff” Jeffries, a photographer who breaks his leg and is confined to his apartment. While Jeff observes the daily lives of his neighbors, he notices something peculiar about the apartment across from his. 

The film is immaculately crafted, and although the pacing is slower than most modern films, its exciting and tense nature never wanes. Despite being made for people our grandparents’ age, it has as much excitement as any modern action movie. It might as well have come out last year.

2: Apollo 13

For those with grandparents who enjoy historical dramas, “Apollo 13” is a thrilling option. Based on a true story, the film follows the three astronauts who embark on a lunar mission aboard the spaceship Apollo 13. When an oxygen tank explodes on the ship, the moon landing is called off and the astronauts attempt to return home alive and safe. 

Although the story by itself is well known, the movie still manages to be intense and gripping, never growing boring or repetitive over the course of its lengthy runtime. Being both a movie about history and space, it will appeal to many different audiences. Add the fact that it stars Tom Hanks as astronaut Jim Lovell, and there’s something for everyone here.

3: Waking Ned Devine

“Waking Ned Devine” is lesser known, but nonetheless a fantastic and absolutely endearing film. Ned Devine, an elderly resident of a small Irish village, wins the lottery and dies hours later. Trouble ensues when the rest of the town covers up Ned’s death in order to collect and split the lottery prize money. 

The film works wonderfully as a comedy tame enough to watch with your family, and it manages to be a feel-good movie without feeling too corny. It goes down easy and is a satisfying watch, no matter how old you are.

4: Knives Out

The most recent film on our list, “Knives Out” has been a favorite among our generation since its 2019 release. Your grandparents will love the thrilling, unorthodox mystery. Mysteries can always transcend the generational gap, and “Knives Out” is especially notable for its clever comedy and subtle social commentary. 

The story is expertly written, and the complex plot unfolds in an accessible, easy-to-understand manner; you feel as though you are solving the mystery as it progresses. Even if you have already seen “Knives Out,” watching it could be a fantastic way to spend time with your grandparents, as they are eager to connect with their grandchildren over anything the kids are interested in. 

There’s no doubt that “Knives Out” will continue to be a popular choice for years to come; maybe someday, you will even watch it with your own grandchildren.