I got a request to do a top 10 list for favorite movies, and I still intend to. But something struck me while I was making my list: I’m not a “favorites” kind of person when it comes to movies. While there are many movies that I love, I try not to compare them to each other. I usually avoid thinking about movies being better than others, unless they have something in common (ie: I loved this Nolan film more than that Nolan film, or I liked Meryl Streep better in that movie than in this one). It’s hard for me to pick between two movies that I love if they don’t have anything in common.
What makes a movie good enough to be a favorite? The ability to go back and watch it a hundred times and never get bored? Well, then I should count out Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. How about connecting with a movie so much the first time you see it, that you fall in love with it right there? Inception is out too, then. What really makes a movie resonate so much with a person, that they can call it their favorite? I could be handed a list of 100 movies that I absolutely love, and it would be hard for me to pick a favorite. They’re all so unique and incomparable; that’s why they’re on that list in the first place. I see no reason to pick one movie over another when both are fantastic in their own ways.
Alright, sorry about that rant. Moving right along, my list of favorites tends to sway more towards action, drama, and psychological thrillers; rarely do I find a comedy that is genuinely funny to me. I am also a sucker for anti-heroes. If it’s a well written movie with a well-written anti-hero, then I’m automatically sold. I also like villians. Same rules apply.
So, how about this. I’ll give you a list of 10 favorite movies from 2000-2009. I kind of wanted to do it per year, but I felt that would be a little bit excessive.
Here’s my list of 10 Favorite Movies of the 2000s, (in no particular order):
The Dark Knight (2008)
Having arguably the greatest villain of all time, The Dark Knight was, without a doubt, the best movie of the decade. I’m not saying I liked it better than every movie on here, but The Dark Knight had something about it that resonated with me. Surely many other people felt it too, considering the outstanding reviews it received. Hopefully everyone that’s reading this has seen The Dark Knight, but if you haven’t, I highly recommend doing something about it.
V for Vendetta (2005)
Remember, remember, the fifth of November, the gunpowder treason and plot. Much like the opening monologue, this movie is entirely unforgettable. A corrupt government outsmarted by a mysterious man in a mask- who doesn’t love that? V for Vendetta is a movie we can all relate to, especially after everything that’s been going on in the world recently. The influence of this movie is very widespread, and it can be seen in the Guy Fawkes masks worn by the anarchist group Anonymous. I recommend this movie to anyone that asks for suggestions, because I think that everyone should watch it at least once.
Blood Diamond (2006)
Despite having its fair share of flaws, Blood Diamond is a movie I could watch over and over again without getting bored. I will warn you that it’s a tough movie to watch for some due to the violence, but it has to be graphic to get the point of the movie across. The film is so well shot that it looks and feels authentic to the viewer, like what you’re watching is actually happening- almost as if it is a documentary. I could have done without the romantic subplot, but, all in all, this is a great movie that demonstrates the cruel and greedy nature of the human spirit, as well as the fighting instinct and need to survive that counteracts it.
The Departed (2006)
Leonardo Dicaprio, Mark Wahlberg, Matt Damon, and Jack Nicholson all in the same movie…sign me up! While sometimes it’s a little hard to follow, the payoff in the end is incomparable. This would have to take the cake as my favorite Dicaprio performance of all time (and of course everyone else is fantastic too). This is a very tough movie to explain, so my advice: just see it!
The Prestige (2006)
If not for the ending, this movie probably wouldn’t have made it onto this list. I was thoroughly entertained while watching it, but it wasn’t one of my favorites until the big reveal in the end. It’s even better the second time you watch it, after you know what happens. I guess it also helps that I’m a sucker for movies about magic, though I’ve never seen one that compares to The Prestige.
Inglourious Basterds (2009)
Though I absolutely love Kill Bill, Inglourious Basterds is the film that made me fall in love with Quentin Tarantino’s directing style. Not to mention Christoph Waltz *wink*. I definitely have a soft spot in my heart for history movies that have been manipulated to tell another story or have a different conclusion, and Inglourious Basterds is the best example I have of what I mean by that. What happens at the end of the movie doesn’t actually happen in history, but the change is what makes it fantastic.
The Incredibles (2004)
The Incredibles, another movie I could watch everyday and not get bored of, is the only animated film on my 2000s list. This is one of my favorite superhero movies of all time, and the one that sparked my interest in superhero movies in the first place! The Incredibles will both touch your heart and make you laugh, and if rumors are correct, they’re finally starting to make the sequel!
Besides Grand Budapest Hotel, The Royal Tenenbaums is the only Wes Anderson film that I felt had depth to it. Many of his films just strike me as being aesthetically pleasing whilst trying to complicatedly prove a point, but The Royal Tenenbaums was much more than that. It’s dark, witty, and beautifully scripted. The roles are uniquely written and developed; they are unlike any characters you’ve ever seen before. I have no doubt saying that this, aside from Grand Budapest Hotel, is Wes Anderson’s best work.
There is no way to describe this movie that will do it justice to people that haven’t seen it. It is astounding. I admired Nolan’s directing & writing abilities in my Interstellar review a little while ago, and I think Memento is a shining example of what he is capable of. Memento is a wild ride from start to finish, and I suggest paying very close attention to it!
The Fall (2006)
As we all (hopefully) know, Lee Pace is absolutely brilliant in everything that he does. He is a prime example of an actor whom, when you’re watching, you can’t tell is acting. He becomes his characters- immerses himself in their life- and a prime example of this is in The Fall. Taking place half in reality and half in a story, The Fall is a fantastic film about love, innocence, pain, and the power of imagination. The Fall is without a doubt the most visually appealing movie I’ve ever seen. While the story may bore some people (though I can’t imagine why it would), I think it’s worth watching just for the cinematography.
Honorable Mentions: Battle Royale, Slumdog Millionaire