The Best Movie of the 90s

Discussion in 'Archive: The Amphitheatre' started by Bresson, Jul 11, 2002.

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  1. Bresson Jedi Youngling

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    May 16, 2002
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    I saw a heated discussion of this topic over at Premiere.com and thought it might be interesting here. Lists always seem to get people fired up. Join in if you like.

    Best? Hard to say as the second I think of a movie that truly stayed with me for the decade, I'll come up with an alternate choice.

    The obvious one is 'GoodFellas', which is truly the best filmmaking of the decade, but as for Scorsese films, 'Age of Innocence' is closer to my heart.

    If I had to choose one, I'd say 'The Piano'. It was the most unique and imaginative movie I remember seeing in years.
  2. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    Goodfellas is most certainly one of the most important films of the nineties, but it's not Scorsese's best.

    Schindler's List is another obvious choice that is as moving and meaningful as anything ever done.

    One can't play down the importance of Pulp Fiction as a major influence, though I would pick the Shawshank Redemption over it most days.

    Personal favorites that are perhaps not as influential as those mentioned, but certainly every bit as emotionally moving: Quiz Show, Dances With Wolves, Unforgiven.

    That's just drama though. For comedy, it's a whole different ball game, with films like City Slickers and Dumb and Dumber taking the lead for emotional resonance and influence, respectively.

    That should be plenty for a first post. :D Pick it apart, y'all. :D
  3. Bresson Jedi Youngling

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    "Dumb and Dumber taking the lead for emotional resonance "

    I'm sure even the Farrelly Bros. are saying, "Come on!"

    As for your other choices, I guess we just have different tastes. Neither 'Dances with Wolves' or 'Shawshank Redemption' did much for me. 'Unforgiven' was a great movie, perhaps Clint Eastwood's last great one.

    I think Scorsese picked a little foreign film called 'The Horse Thief' as the best of the 90s, and, on the same show, Roger Ebert picked 'Hoop Dreams'.

    I'll stick with 'The Piano', even over 'Schindler's List' the same year.
  4. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    Ah, you have misquoted me. I stated City Slickers and Dumb and Dumber taking the lead for emotional resonance and influence, respectively. Therefore, it's City Slickers that has the emotion, Dumb and Dumber with the influence and there's no arguing the fact that it kick started an entirely new genre, or at the very least revived a dying one.

    And speaking of reviving a dying genre, LA Confidential is another one, pretty well bringing noir back with bang, though one could argue that Se7en brought back noir if one wanted.

    And speaking of that, Branagh's Hamlet remains the crowning achievement of Shakespearan films, outdoing even Olivier's best efforts.
  5. Iwishiwasajedi Jedi Master

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  6. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    This is not a thread for favorite lists, at least not as I see it. This a thread for debating the various films that might possibly be the best of the 90s.
  7. Gandalf the Grey Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 14, 2000
    star 6
    I'm going to leave this open for the time being, but this better not turn into

    "Yeah, I liked film X. Film Y sucked though."
    "No way, film Y was kewl. I also liked film Z."
    "I didn't like film Z, but film X was cool."


  8. Bresson Jedi Youngling

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    May 16, 2002
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    Well, I didn't intend for someone to come here and just list 1-10 their favs. I didn't do that in my initial post. I see this as a way to debate the various films of the last decade that may have influenced/entertained the visitors to this site, much like the Kubrick or Gilliam thread.
  9. Mastadge Manager Emeritus

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    Léon takes the cake as far as I'm concerned.
  10. Amidala Starkiller Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 11, 1999
    star 6
    For fun I looked up Academy Award winners for best picture.

    1999 - American Beauty
    1998 - Shakespeare in Love
    1997 - Titanic
    1996 - The English Patient
    1995 - Braveheart
    1994 - Forrest Gump
    1993 - Schindler's List
    1992 - Unforgiven
    1991 - The Silence of the Lambs
    1990 - Dances with Wolves

    I don't agree with some of these but The Silence of the Lambs, Braveheart, and American Beauty were some the best of the 90's


  11. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    The Silence of the Lambs is a real classic. Top of the line thriller with excellent performances by all concerned. One could certainly argue for that one, being pretty groundbreaking at the time too.
  12. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

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    Nov 6, 2001
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    Goodfellas was:

    A)barely in the decade (techically out of it)
    B)not even the best film in its own year

    Silence of the Lambs swept that movie year.

    I do believe the best film of the decade was Titanic (although I have not seen Schindler's List yet), but nobody here is going to share that opinion. Braveheart and American Beauty are close behind.
  13. Amidala Starkiller Force Ghost

    Member Since:
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    American Beauty is one the best of all time.
  14. Bresson Jedi Youngling

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    KnightWriter,

    Actually, 'GoodFellas' came out in 1990 and was beat at the Oscars by 'Dances with Wolves'. I loved 'Titanic', also. It's probably somewhere in my top 15/20, if I actually had a top 15/20.

    BTW, Rogue 11/2, my bad. I did misread your 'Dumb and Dumber' comment.

    I guess any discussion of the 90s oeuvre can't be had without acknowledging 'Pulp Fiction' as clearly the most influential film of the decade. It wasn't my favorite and I have trouble working up passion for it, but it certainly changed the landscape of Hollywood and an entire generation of filmgoers, not necessarily for the better.

  15. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

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    I meant "technically" because technically speaking, 1990 is part of the 1980s.

  16. Bresson Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
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    "I meant "technically" because technically speaking, 1990 is part of the 1980s. "

    It is? I didn't get the memo on that!

    You should tell Ebert, because he put 'GoodFellas' number 3 on his best of 90s list.

  17. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Just one of those time things. It's the same reason 2000 is part of the 20th century, not the 21st.

    Back to the subject, there just haven't been many (if any) movies in the past couple years to rival the best of the 90s movies.
  18. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    Personally, I felt that Goodfellas was paced a bit slow, at least more so than most of Scorsese's stuff. In my opinion, it was the performances that sold that film more than anything. Pesci, Bracco and Liotta have never been better and De Niro is pretty much always good. :D

    I did prefer Dances With Wolves for Best Picture, but I do think that, just because he got ripped off for Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, that Scorsese should have taken Best Director.

    And, counting decades and such, the decade didn't really start until 1991, but 1990 is a part of the 90s, because 'the 90s' does not refer to a classic decade, but, by defination, to the years from 90 to 99.
  19. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

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    Nov 6, 2001
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    Ah ah, careful on the ripped off part for Raging Bull. Don't forget about Ordinary People. That was a masterfully directed film.
  20. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    I grant you that I've never seen Ordinary People, but still, I just can't picture a film with better direction than Raging Bull. The fights, the black and white shots, the jealousy shots. I mean wow! :D

    I will eventually watch Ordinary People though and we'll see what I think then.
  21. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
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    And granted I've never seen Raging Bull. It's just that Redford does such a superb job with a stellar cast (Mary Tyler Moore, Donald Sutherland, Judd Hirsch, Timothy Hutton) in what was his directorial debut. It's a rare time when a film was done just as well as the book it was based on.
  22. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

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    Well, how about this then? I'll watch Ordinary People if you'll watch Raging Bull. :D

    Hmm, interesting that suddenly we're debating the 80s instead of the 90s. :p
  23. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

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    Nov 6, 2001
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    Sounds good to me :). I'll pick it up in the near future and give it a watch.
  24. General Kenobi Administrator Emeritus

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    Dec 31, 1998
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    From original viewing in the theater, I would go with Schindler's List or Unforgiven.

    But over the last several years, I have watched The Shawshank Redemption much more, and would probably give it the nod. (Not that Gump was undeserving of an Oscar; it just got noticed more at the time.)
  25. Radiohead Jedi Master

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    Mar 31, 2002
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    I find it surprising that Saving Private Ryan hasn't been mentioned. Not only is it an amazing film with great acting performances, it also helped to redefine the genre of war films.
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