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Recommendations for a movie night
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What could be better than celebrating warm weather with a movie night and popcorn? This month, we at the library want to highlight some semi-recent movies you might have missed.

The delightful "Lady Bird" is set in 2002 and focuses on the senior year of a girl at a private high school. Lady Bird (as she has named herself) can't wait to get out of Sacramento and head to the East Coast, sure she is meant for greater things. However, her mother wants her to think realistically. Her older brother has returned home with his girlfriend, and her family is struggling financially. Anyone who has ever felt like their mom is cramping their style knows what it's like to be Lady Bird, and any parent who has struggled to make their child understand that they are not the center of the universe will relate to her mother. The movie plays out like a collision between Lady Bird dreaming big and her mother playing it safe, but ultimately it leads to Lady Bird understanding the importance of having a safe place within a family. Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalfe turn in wonderful performances as daughter and mother, bolstered by secondary characters like Lady Bird's friend Julie, played by Beanie Feldstein.

Not your average sports movie, the biopic "Battle of the Sexes" boasts girl power, oh-so-'70s costumes and stellar performances from Emma Stone and Steve Carell as the famed tennis players Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs. As someone who was not alive for the events of the film, I was surprised to learn that Riggs was actually a washed-up has-been huckster and not a true athletic match for top-of-her-game King. The scenes depicting King and her fellow female tennis players standing up for equal pay and successfully creating their own professional tennis tour are highlights, even though you know how the story ends.

A sweet comedy that is both romantic and awkward, "The Big Sick" is based on the real-life relationship of the movie's screenwriters, Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani. Nanjiani, a stand-up comic known for "Portlandia" and "Silicon Valley," also stars as the fictional version of himself. First, Kumail and Emily have to somewhat-successfully navigate the strange world of 21st-century dating. Then, when she comes down with a mysterious illness and falls into a coma, Kumail has to figure out how to stand by her side once her headstrong parents arrive. Kumail navigates hospitals and family dynamics along with his growing feelings for Emily. It's not the type of movie that provides non-stop laughs, but rather unfolds with the humor of the absurdity of everyday life.

The preamble to "Spider-Man: Homecoming" had lots of people, including myself, asking "why do we need yet another Spider-Man movie?" But, as it turns out, this is a pretty great Spider-Man movie. Rather than returning to the origin story of Peter Parker and the mutant spider, "Homecoming" takes place in a world where Peter has had his powers for a while, and has a pretty good handle on being the "friendly neighborhood Spider-Man." However, Peter is also in high school, and being a hero can get in the way of dating, school activities and being a good nephew. "Homecoming" truly shines due to the effortless charm of its star, Tom Holland. The audience gets to follow along with his trusted, yet goofy, friend Ned, played by Jacob Batalon, as Spider-Man learns how to be super from Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) while chasing a mysterious bad guy played by the so-good Michael Keaton.

Thriller fans, you don't want to miss out on "Life," which dishes up a delicious blend of horror and suspense. Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Reynolds and the wonderful Rebecca Ferguson as a science team on board a space station, "Life" begins with all my favorite aspects of space crew stories - scientific research, friendships among the astronauts and a healthy understanding of the dangers of space. Then, the movie unfolds at the perfect pace to reveal the mystery and secrets within.

The latest heartrending teen romance, "Everything, Everything," is based on a book by Nicola Yoon. Maddy is unable to leave her house due to a mysterious illness and is mostly content until the hunky Olly moves in next door. This movie perfectly depicts how you can get to know someone incredibly closely only through writing and telephone calls. As Maddy and Olly fall in love, she starts to want to widen the world beyond her home. What happens next might be a surprise, or not. Though the theme of love conquering all is apparent, what Maddy really learns is to stand up for herself as an individual.

If you're a big Tom Hanks fan, you might have already seen "A Hologram for the King." If you missed it, you should give it a shot! Hanks's wonderful performance anchors this alternately absurd and desolate tale. Hanks's character is in Saudi Arabia on business, supposedly to sell holographic software to the king. Instead, he has to navigate unknown customs, hang out with some lowly computer nerds, and go on all kinds of strange adventures in order to do his job. It's a good film to watch if you like fish-out-of-water stories. While you're at the library, check out the original Dave Eggers novel.

Here at the library, we have plenty of delightful movies in every genre. Stop in and take a look at the new releases on our Most Wanted shelf, where you're sure to find a surprise every time. We're also always happy to place holds for you, so you can see the movies you want.

- Cover to Cover is provided by the Monroe Public Library and is published the fourth Wednesday of the month. This month's column was written by Laura Schmiedicke.