Weekend Watchlist: Guilty Pleasures

By The Pitt News Staff

It’s time to live free of shame. We all have habits that aren’t exactly healthy, and to be honest, giving in to the urge to stream “The Bachelor” isn’t the worst thing we could do for ourselves. So this weekend we’re sharing our guilty pleasure streaming favorites, without the guilt.

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (Disney +) // Diana Velasquez, Staff Writer

So here’s the thing, it will be very difficult to understand this movie if you haven’t seen the first two. It’s hard to understand even if you have. Something about fighting the East India Trading Company with an ancient sea witch who’s trapped in a mortal body, don’t worry about it, Orlando Bloom is here. There is nothing better in this world to watch with some friends than “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.” The plot really makes no sense, and it is universally agreed that the first Pirates is the best one, but this one has Kiera Knightly as a badass pirate king! And really there is nothing better than that. Sure there’s a weird scene where Johnny Depp as the iconic Captain Jack Sparrow convinces a bunch of rock crabs to carry his stranded ship — yes, they’re literal rocks — but who cares when you’ve got a nonstop CGI-fest of ship battles to get to! When it came out in 2007, this movie was the most expensive film made in all time, but it earned more than its money back and Disney milked this franchise for years. “At World’s End” oozes with that 2010s feeling, and much of Gen Z was raised on these movies. And compared to some other movies from the time its CGI has really kept up and looks pretty sharp even in 2020. By the end of the movie you’ll be humming along to Hans Zimmer’s iconic score for days. For all of Disney’s problems they do know how to unleash that sweet childhood nostalgia upon you — and sometimes it’s just what you need.

Happy Gilmore (Amazon Prime Video) // Anna Ligorio, Staff Writer 

Some of the best guilty pleasure movies are ’90s comedies. Therefore, you just need to watch an Adam Sandler movie to fulfill that need. Undoubtedly, Adam Sandler has some bad films. Do I even need to remind you about “Pixels”? But Sandler also has some undeniable classics, and one of those is the iconic 1996 film “Happy Gilmore.” Sandler’s character Happy is a foul-mouthed and aggressive hockey player who discovers that he is a naturally gifted golfer with a killer drive. With the help of Chubbs, a retired pro-golfer whose hand was bitten off by an alligator, Happy competes in golf tournaments to win money and save his grandma’s house from foreclosure. Happy’s bold, violent and fearless personality is the antithesis of golf culture, but he’s wildly popular with golf fans and quickly becomes one of the most talented players in the league. His nemesis Shooter McGavin (Christopher McDonald) is always lurking in the background trying to thwart his success, however, and Happy often struggles to control his anger issues. In one of the movie’s most memorable moments, Happy gets in a heated fist fight on the golf course with former “The Price is Right” host Bob Barker. Hearing Happy exclaim “The price is wrong, bitch!” and then immediately being beat up by a 70-year-old man is probably one of life’s guiltiest pleasures. Although “Happy Gilmore” did not win Adam Sandler any Oscars, it is one of his best works and is guaranteed to satisfy your need for a cheesy, hilarious, feel-good movie.

Cars (Disney +) // Simon Sweeney, For The Pitt News

Long before “Kachow!” entered the lexicon of the nostalgia-obsessed internet, “Cars” was the first movie I saw in a theater, the first movie I cried to and for a series of years from ages 6 to 10 or so, my favorite movie of all time. Whatever the general consensus on its quality may be, let alone that of its sequels, it holds up as a rather excellent mid-2000s animated gem, widely dismissed but not to be ignored. Like “Monsters vs. Aliens,” another disregarded animated feature –– sadly removed recently from Netflix –– of the era that I rate far above what any sane person should, a murderer’s row of a cast and a collection of unique characters in an interesting world left a mark on my young mind and I haven’t shaken it as I’ve grown up. At the very least, it’s worth it to have legendary actors like Paul Newman and George Carlin, in their respective almost-final roles, as anthropomorphic cars. Check it out, even if you don’t have a younger sibling or babysitting charge to blame for forcing you to watch that stupid kid’s movie. That’s what guilty pleasures are for.

The Circle (Netflix) // Maggie Young, Contributing Editor

Before I get into this, I feel obliged to admit that this show is absolutely ridiculous. It makes no sense — yet makes so much sense at the same time. And it’s hilarious. This reality show starts when the contestants move into their units in an apartment complex that’s planted in some unnamed city. Each of the contestants explores alone because they’re unable to meet the other players. Shortly upon their arrival, the players get a notification from the social media platform set up in the apartment TVs that’s lovingly donned The Circle. Viewers quickly realize this is the most millennial game show ever — you win by getting popular on social media. The players interact with each other only online through DMs and group chats with their Circle profiles they create during the first episode, so naturally some catfish emerge. The players range from undeniably unlikeable to fun and flirty, but each of them have their moments that make the viewer want to find their Twitter profile immediately. “The Circle” gets you to question why you’ve chosen to waste your time this way, but like any great guilty pleasure, you can’t stop watching.