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> Monday, February 8th, 2010 > Lifestyles > Cinema Connoisseur: The top 100 films of the past decade (#20 to 1)
Cinema Connoisseur: The top 100 films of the past decade (#20 to 1)
Click here to read more Interrobang articles written by Allen Gaynor
Published: Monday, February 8th, 2010
Our regular Cinema Connoisseur Allen Gaynor is still off. His twin brother Sal Gaynor continues sharing his list of the top films of the past decade, this week counting down from 20 to 1.
20. Almost Famous (2000) – A high school student lands a job as a writer for Rolling Stone, travels with an up and coming rock band, and learns about the wonderful world of groupies. This is the film that launched Kate Hudson’s career. So remember that next time you’re watching Bride Wars.
19. High Fidelity (2000) – A record store owner (John Cusack) is big on making lists. He shares with the viewers his list of top five breakups, recounting how each one went sour.
18. The House of Sand and Fog (2003) – A woman (Jennifer Connelly) is evicted from her home due to a technicality, and it is quickly purchased by an Iranian immigrant. This leads to a battle between the two that turns tragic.
17. The Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001 to 2003) – Sure, there were three of them, but I consider them one really long movie. I probably would have liked it more if I read the book (I hate books), but nonetheless, they were three outstanding films.
16. The Wrestler (2008) – Mickey Rourke plays a past-his- prime pro wrestler who can’t hang up his boots. Rourke manages to make him into a likeable character even though he makes the wrong decision at nearly every turn.
15. A Mighty Wind (2003) – Terrific comedy about three folk groups from the 1960s that reunite to perform at a tribute concert for a deceased concert promoter.
14. Requiem For a Dream (2000) – One of the most depressing movies you’ll ever see, but worth watching. Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly and Marlon Wayans are three youngsters who show us all why drugs are bad. There is no feel good ending in this one.
13. Children of Men (2006) – In the year 2027, women can no longer give birth. That is the belief anyway, until a pregnant woman is discovered. A former activist (Clive Owen) agrees to travel with her to sanctuary.
12. Minority Report (2002) – In the year 2054, technology exists that allows criminals to be arrested before they even commit a crime. Tom Cruise plays the top gun of the “Precrime” division, who ends up on the run himself in this underrated Steven Spielberg film.
11. Little Miss Sunshine (2006) – A dysfunctional family goes on a road trip as a seven year old girl competes in the Little Miss Sunshine pageant. Greg Kinnear, Steve Carell and Alan Arkin are all terrific in it, as is young Abigail Breslin in her breakthrough role – though she has gone on to star in such questionable fare as The Santa Clause 3, Air Buddies and The Tooth Fairy.
10. Shaun of the Dead (2004) – The greatest zombie film of all time, and a comic gem. A slacker (Simon Pegg) tries to win back the love of his life, and generally get his life in order, all the while fighting off bloodthirsty flesh eaters.
9. American Psycho (2000) – This dark comedy sees a 1980s yuppie (Christian Bale) developing a secret life as a serial killer. Before finishing off his victims, he makes sure they hear him extol the virtues of 80s icons such as Huey Lewis and Phil Collins.
8. Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003) – It was overshadowed in 2003 by another seafaring flick (Pirates of the Caribbean), which is a shame, since this was the superior film. Russell Crowe plays a British captain who perhaps pushes his ship and his crew members too far in his pursuit of an enemy French vessel.
7. Bad Santa (2003) – The one movie on this list I can watch again and again. It is quite possibly the second greatest Christmas movie of all-time, behind A Christmas Story. Billy Bob Thornton is outstanding as a drunken, lecherous mall Santa/robber who becomes a little less drunken and lecherous thanks to the help of an unusual boy named Thurman Merman.
6. The Cooler (2003) – Alec Baldwin plays an old school casino boss who employs a down on his luck gambler (William H. Macy) as a “cooler,” one who brings bad luck to other patrons. But when the cooler falls in love, his luck begins to change, which makes his employer none too happy.
5. The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (2007) – Highly engaging documentary about the battle between two gamers to hold the record for top Donkey Kong score. One of the gamers (Billy Mitchell) has surpassed Darth Vader in my view as the greatest villain in cinematic history – and he’s real!
4. Best in Show (2000) – A tremendously funny “mockumentary” about a colourful cast of characters who congregate for the Mayflower Kennel Club Dog Show.
3. Juno (2007) – Teenager Juno MacGuff (Ellen Page) discovers she is pregnant after a somewhat romantic encounter with her boyfriend (Michael Cera). She decides to deliver the baby, with plans on handing it over to another couple (Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman). But things go awry when she gets a little too involved in their lives.
2. Garden State (2004) – I like the show “Scrubs,” but I never would have imagined its star Zach Braff had it in him to write, direct and star in a film of this magnitude. Braff plays a depressed and heavily medicated young man who returns home for his mother’s funeral after being estranged for a decade. He must confront his father, but along the way, falls for a colourful young lady (Natalie Portman) who is everything he isn’t.
1. Lost in Translation (2003) – Despite a generational gap, two Americans who are staying at a Tokyo hotel bond due to similar life situations, specifically loneliness and marital discord. Bill Murray plays a washed up actor who is in the country to film a commercial, while the much younger Scarlett Johansson spends most of her time in hotels, while her celebrity photographer husband is out working.
To view numbers 100 through 21, visit www.cinemaconn.com
Check out www.cinemaconn.com to read the Cinema Connoisseurs blog, which includes his entire archive of reviews.