2 Movies Like Banana Split (2018)

Staff & contributors

, 2019

A beautifully shot movie about a high-schooler who's pushed by his father to always work and exercise the hardest. He aces his exams and always wins at wrestling, but nothing is ever good enough for the father and there is no margin for error. When things with both his body and his relationship start going wrong, his existence comes crashing down. This movie has two parts, and it takes a lot of narrative risks, but the beautiful camera work and believable characters land every single risk. It's an incredible achievement and a movie that should have gotten much more attention than it did.

Genre: Drama, Romance

Actor: Alexa Demie, Avis-Marie Barnes, Bill Wise, Carter Harcek, Clifton Collins Jr., David Garelik, David Payton, Ellen Marguerite Cullivan, Harlan Drum, Harmony Korine, Holland Hayes, Joshua Brockington, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Krisha Fairchild, Kristin Wollett, Lucas Hedges, Neal Huff, Nicholas Ryan Hernandez, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Sterling K. Brown, Taylor Russell, Vivi Pineda

Director: Trey Edward Shults

Rating: R

Education isn’t always a guarantee, especially in less privileged areas that are underfunded, overlooked, and underprioritized, in the belief that these kids wouldn’t amount to much in the end. That being said, sometimes, what changes that fate is having a teacher that believed in his students and encouraged them to learn more than what they were expected. Stand and Deliver is a dramatization of the real life Jaime Escalante, who transformed a math program in an east LA high school to the point where his entire class ace California’s calculus test. The film definitely takes some dramatic liberties, but it does capture a sense of his quiet determination, the personality that pushed him to believe in and connect with students differently. While Escalante’s program eventually ended due to admin changes and staff in-fighting, Stand and Deliver is a reminder of the importance of nurturing ganas, or desire, in the classroom.

Genre: Drama

Actor: Andy Garcia, Betty Carvalho, Bodie Olmos, Carmen Argenziano, Edward James Olmos, Estelle Harris, Ingrid Oliu, Irene Olga López, Karla Montana, Lou Diamond Phillips, Manuel Benitez, Mark Phelan, Rosanna DeSoto, Vanessa Marquez, Virginia Paris

Director: Ramón Menéndez

Rating: PG