What to stream: Movies to match any vacation mood | Movies


Jack Nicholson in “The Shining” 

Right about now, I bet most of us are wishing we were somewhere else. After almost a year of COVID-19 restrictions, including on travel, the cabin fever has long since set in, and a yearning to be some place, any place, else.

So what’s one to do? Travel via film, of course!

International films are a great way to dip a toe into other countries and cultures, but sometimes you just want to see a different place, a different vibe or some different weather, for crying out loud. So here are some streaming suggestions to escape the state you’re in, for at least 90 minutes.

If you’re craving sun and sand, check out:

“The Shallows” (2016) • Blake Lively stars as an adventurous surfer who goes to battle with a great white shark while charging waves in Mexico. Jaume Collet-Serra’s lean, mean beach thriller is way better than it has any business being. It showcases the crystal-clear waters of Queensland, Australia, where it was filmed. This sunny splash of salt water and shark-based thrills will set you right instantly. Plus, an inspired supporting performance by “Stephen the Seagull.” Rent it for $2.99 on Amazon or Redbox.

“Mamma Mia!” (2008) • This movie musical is the fastest delivery system for a dose of silly, sun-dappled joy. Drink in all the sun-drenched scenery of the Greek island where it was filmed, upon which some of our finest actors gyrate, hip-thrust and lip-sync to the infectious tunes of Sweden’s greatest export, ABBA. Phyllida Lloyd’s movie musical is pure cinematic Pixy Stix, a sugar rush of corny jokes, bright costumes and musical numbers. Plus: Meryl Streep! Pierce Brosnan singing badly! A snorkel-based dance routine featuring a game Dominic Cooper! You need this serotonin! Watch it on Starz, or a $3.99 digital rental on all platforms.

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