Having already received some rave reviews in the UK, Brit comedy The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel releases in the US this week. Directed by John Madden and featuring an all-star (and mature) cast including Judi Dench, Maggie Smith and Bill Nighy, the story focuses on British retirees who travel to India and take up residence in a “newly-restored” and “luxurious” hotel (but it’s not quite what they think it is). Will it take its place among some of your best-loved senior movie moments? Did you know that there are now granny nannies? That would make a great and probably funny movie. Let’s take a look at some of the previous senior-starring movie hits:

Cocoon (1985)

Let’s start with this much-loved movie – everyone (born at least in or before 1985) remembers Cocoon! The story takes place around a group of seniors who trespass and take a dip in a pool filled with alien cocoons, only to find themselves with a new lease on life and vitality – hijinks ensue. It’s a very cute, entertaining film starring Don Ameche, Wilford Brimley and Hume Cronyn.

Grumpy Old Men (1993)

This one’s a great, grumpy classic! Starring Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau and Ann-Margret, a lifelong feud between two (grumpy) elderly next-door-neighbors, John and Max, gets even worse when a new female moves across the street. They’ve been insulting each other for 50 long years, when Ariel comes along and turns their world upside down – they’re both attracted to her. Their rivalry is sweet, and very entertaining. A must-see!

Ladies in Lavender (2004)

This charming film takes place in pre-war England, starring Judi Dench, Maggie Smith and Daniel Brühl. The story involves two aging sisters, Ursula and Janet, living together peacefully on the shore of Cornwall, until… they discover a nearly-drowned young man on the beach! They nurse the young Polish man (Andrea) back to health and take him under their wing by communicating in broken German and teaching him English. They discover he’s on his way to America for a better life, however trouble starts brewing when the other townspeople get wind of the visitor.

Batteries Not Included (1987)

A firm favourite, especially for kids growing up in the ‘80s (I should know, I was one!), Batteries Not Included features a tale of woe from some elderly tenants who are being forced to move out of their building so it can be demolished by some big, bad developers, who use scare tactics to “persuade” the group to leave. But who will save the day? Some visiting extraterrestrials, that’s who! And they do all they can to save the elderly residents’ home from being destroyed. Lovely, sweet story, and some funny moments make this a very memorable movie!

Tea with Mussolini (1999)

This fascinating semi-autobiographical tale tells the story of the early life of director Franco Zeffirelli as the illegitimate son of an Italian businessman. Orphaned, he is raised by an Engligh woman in pre-WWII fascist Italy. The movie stars Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Joan Plowright, and Cher as a group of women living in a sheltered, close-knit Florence community in which they believe is guaranteed personal protection in a tea reception given by Il Duce. Unfortunately for them, it doesn’t quite work out that way. Cher plays the memorable wealthy American who visits from time to time, and helps them out in their time of need by secretly arranging for them to stay in a hotel. It just gets worse from there, but it makes a good movie, and the semi-autobiographical element makes it an interesting movie to watch. Very well done, and an overall enjoyable movie experience.

The Bucket List (2007)

Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman are what make this movie so great – they star as corporate billionaire Edward Cole and working-class mechanic Carter Chambersm respectively, who share only one thing in common – well, maybe two; terminal illnesses and a hospital room. While they’re in hospital, they decide to do all the things they wanted to with their lives before they die. They call it a “bucket list”. The two become unlikely friends, and makes for a heart-warming tale of friendship, and joy, with a hint of sadness thrown in.

Something’s Gotta Give (2003)

Another Jack Nicholson movie, this one also features Diane Keaton and is quite frankly hilarious! Nicholson’s character plays an old swinger with a taste for much younger women, yet ends up meeting Keaton and falls in love – only to break her heart by denying his true feelings. Keaton’s character happens to be a famous playwright, and writes a play about the ordeal in between crying herself silly and dating Keanu Reeves! But who does she end up with? Watch it and see!

Mrs Caldicott’s Cabbage Wars (2002)

This film features Pauline Collins as Thelma Caldicot, who isn’t actually very old, but is coerced into a rest home by her evil relatives after her bullying husband kicks the bucket! The unfortunate Thelma decides to find her mettle and her apathy soon turns to anger, then action, as she discards her medication and starts a rebellion with her aged care-home cohorts! Funny, entertaining and enlightening.

Space Cowboys (2000)

Four old hotshot test pilots get together for an unlikely reunion when a retired engineer played by Clint Eastwood is called upon by NASA to rescue a failing satellite, only he insists that his, er, mature teammates accompany him into space. The film also stars James Garner, Tommy Lee Jones and Donald Sutherland, who make for an interesting ride! Fantastic movie full of comedy, action and drama – Eastwood does an excellent job, as always, managing any character thrown his way. Well worth a watch.