Movies like Licorice Pizza to watch next


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Paul thomas anderson made some of the most famous films of the 20th and 21st century. From There will be blood at Boogie evenings, from The master at Drunk love punch, the filmmaker turned out to be a huge talent behind the camera. His latest film, Licorice Pizza, is already receiving rave reviews and earning awards. The film, set in 1973 in the San Fernando Valley, focuses on the bond formed between the child-actor and con artist Gary Valentine (Cooper hoffman) and her crush Alana Kane (Alana Chaim), both finding their way in life and maybe, just maybe, finding love. With a large supporting cast, including Bradley Cooper, Sean Penn, Tom is waiting, and Benny SafdieAnderson’s relaxed tone and engaged directing, it’s easy to see why so many people fall in love with the film.

Sure, Licorice Pizza has also been the subject of controversy, with some questioning the central romance between a 15-year-old boy and a 25-year-old woman, but stories like this have already been made. Whether it’s capturing a certain nostalgic era, an unlikely romance, or painting an honest picture of adolescence, these are films that share one thing in common with Anderson’s latest film.

RELATED: Where ‘Licorice Pizza’ Ranks Against Paul Thomas Anderson’s Best Movies

Boogie evenings



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Anderon’s filmography is quite diverse, although some films show similar strands of DNA. Anderson’s second feature film, Boogie evenings is the film that holds the most common ground with Licorice Pizza. The film is similarly set in the San Fernando Valley in the ’70s, but takes a look at another aspect of filmmaking: the adult film industry. Young Eddie Adams (Mark Wahlberg) is caught under the wing of porn filmmaker Jack Horner (Burt reynolds) and becomes superstar Dirk Diggler.

A movie about porn is something that would make a lot of mockery, but the way Anderson paints the era does Boogie evenings relentlessly watchable. A little like Licorice Pizza, the film has a loaded cast alongside Wahlberg and Reynolds, including Julianne Moore, John C. Reilly, Phillip seymour hoffman, Don cheadle, Alfred Molina, William H. Macy, and Heather graham. While this is surely not a movie to watch with the whole family, Boogie evenings is the perfect introduction to Anderson’s sensibility as a filmmaker, from his staging to his humor and world-building.

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Almost known



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Image via Columbia Pictures

Before the age gap in Licorice Pizza met a grueling speech, another coming-of-age movie from the 70s featured a young teenager falling in love with an older woman: Cameron Croweis classic Almost known. The film focuses on William (Patrick fugit), a 15-year-old music journalist, who is given the opportunity of his life when Rolling stone the magazine hires him to interview and write an article on the emerging group Stillwater. While traveling the road with the rock band, he meets the enigmatic and magnificent groupie Penny Lane (Kate hudson) and begins to fall head over heels in love.

Crowe is no stranger to delivering crowd pleasures, including Jerry maguire, Say anything, and We bought a zoo; Almost known is no different. Combining themes of first love, family and classic rock, Almost known is a movie that sums up the 70s to those who weren’t there at the time. Plus, you can never go wrong with Francoise McDormand in your movie, can you?

Lady Bird



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Image via A24

Greta Gerwig blessed the world with one of the 21st century’s greatest directorial debuts in coming-of-age drama Lady Bird. A little like Licorice Pizza, the film takes a less story-centric approach and takes on a more relaxed aura that makes the film even more authentic. The film focuses on Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan), a 17-year-old high school student at a Catholic school in Sacramento. We follow Lady as she navigates her relationship with her loving but stressed mother (Laurie Metcalf), deals with the loss of her virginity to the benefit of the bad boy of the Catholic school (Timothée Chalamet), manages her eventful relationship with her best friend (Feldstein beanie), and tries to get into a college on the east coast.

Lady Bird feels authentic and poignantly captures the angst and strong emotions of being a teenager. Ronan arguably gives his best performance as the main character and Metcalf has never looked as good as it is here. Despite its release only four years ago, Lady Bird has already become a staple of the coming-of-age genre.

Once upon a time in hollywood



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Image via Sony Pictures

Many period pieces attempt to recreate an era in a way that truly transports audiences back in time, combining new and old shooting techniques, but very few films have come close to how Quentin Tarantino did so in his Oscar-winning 2019 film, Once upon a time in hollywood. Just as Anderson made the San Fernando Valley of the 1970s a Licorice Pizza, Tarantino developed and fleshed out ’60s Hollywood to such an extent that he was truly the main character in the film, even after Leonardo DiCaprioit’s Rick Dalton. With the Manson murders as a backdrop, Once upon a time in hollywood follows declining TV star Rick Dalton (DiCaprio) and his stuntman / best friend Cliff Booth (Brad pitt) on a quest to give Dalton a second chance. Dalton’s next door neighbor also happens to be Hollywood icon, Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie).

While cowardly on history, Once upon a time in hollywood looks a lot more like Tarantino’s version of a dating movie. The film also follows Dalton, Booth and Tate in their daily lives until the events of the night of August 9, 1969, but is told in the classic Tarantino revisionist style.

Dizzy and confused



Rory Cochrane and Matthew McConaughey in Dazed and Confused
Image via Gramercy Pictures

Richard linklater is the unofficial king of hangout movies. The previous trilogy, Everyone wants some !!, and Lazy are just a few examples of Linklater’s take on the subgenre. Linklater has also given audiences acclaimed films such as the ambitious Oscar winner Childhood and Rock school. However, it is Dizzy and confused this is Linklater’s defining film, and for good reason. The 1991 film’s influence, not only on Linklater’s career, but on coming-of-age films, is remarkable. Located in Austin in May 1976, Dizzy and confused follows a group of high school and college kids on their last day of school with drugs, alcohol, sex and shenanigans galore.

Another bright spot is that the film introduced the world to the future winner for Best Actor. Matthew mcconaughey in the iconic role of Wooderson, which gave us the iconic line, “Alright, alright, alright.” A little like Licorice Pizza, Dizzy and confused does not coat adolescence, on the contrary, it paints an honest picture of teenage rebellion and debauchery. It is the Hangout movie that rules all Hangout movies.

Great adolescence



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Image via Hulu

2020 was the landmark year for Pierre Davidson. After joining Saturday Night Live in 2014, Davidson was everywhere in 2020, From his stand-up Netflix special Living from New York to the Judd Apatow-directed The King of Staten Island (in the tradition of other comedians becoming prominent stars with an Apatow film), to the very underestimated Great adolescence through Jason orley. The teen comedy follows 16-year-old Monroe (Griffon Gluck), an unpopular high school student whose best friend happens to be the ex-boyfriend of his older sister Zeke (Davidson), a college dropout and a drug dealer. As Monroe begins to take Gluck’s advice, his life begins to spiral out of control.

A little like Licorice Pizza, Great adolescence puts its young protagonists in adult situations allowing the public to see more specific subjects through the prism of youth. Gluck’s Monroe doesn’t have as much experience as Hoffman’s Gary Valentine, but over the course of the movie he begins to gain more and more benefits. While not a perfect movie, and certainly not of the same caliber as some of the other movies on this list, Great adolescence is a watch worth the money.

mid 90s



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Image via A24

While movies like Licorice Pizza and Once upon a time in hollywood transporting audiences to the 70s and 60s using both past and present filming techniques, Jonas hillthe directorial debut of, mid 90s, it looks like it was ripped from the arthouse scene of the 90s. The film chronicles the adventures of Stevie (Sunny suljic), a 13-year-old who lives with his single mother (Katherine Waterston) and his abusive older brother Ian (Lucas hurdles). When Stevie discovers his passion for skateboarding, he befriends a group of rebellious skateboarders who try to guide him through his day to day life.

mid 90s Almost feels like a Linklater debut, one that focuses more on creating a relaxed, laid-back atmosphere rather than presenting a larger-than-life conflict. It’s a fast watch, only lasting 85 minutes, but still manages to flesh out the characters in a way that makes the film endearing.


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