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Added by the giraffe on 6 Jan 2010 12:04
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Best of 00s

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People who added this item 7686 Average listal rating (4961 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8.1
It pains me that I can't simply list this as Kill Bill for my number one spot. Those who've wasted breath over which volume is better missed the point: Tarantino shot this as one epic film. It was Miramax that divided it into 2 halves so that the public would sit through the whole thing (and I'm sure they wanted to cash in on charging people twice too). Personally, I would've sat through it all in one sitting, and certainly would've gone back to see it again.

Once both halves came to DVD, I sat down and watched them back-to-back, skipping the credits for volume 1 and the recap that kicks off volume 2, and then I better realized just how great a film this is. The revenge plot shot in Tarantino's patchwork style...the homage to various film styles...the soundtrack, which is my personal favorite out of all his movies...and the way the entire narrative takes you along with the Bride for the duration. Miramax need not have worried, because the storytelling is perfect, the cast is perfect, the dialogue is perfect, the soundtrack is perfect, and the whole thing is equally rewarding on repeated viewings.

This is what cinema is supposed to be, what it's supposed to do for us, and it's sad that so many people are lacking in their attention spans that we've been denied the full, intended experience. I look forward to the day when Tarantino finally gets to put it back together for those of us who still want it, and I hope that it leads others to understand just what they missed.
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People who added this item 6256 Average listal rating (4187 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8
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The best love story of the 00s. When it ended, I remember I turned to my best friend seated beside me and said, "I hate it when I have to reorganize my top ten films of all-time." He agreed.

I could go on & on about it, but odds are I don't need to because you've already heard enough about it and already seen it. If you haven't, then stop reading this list & go watch it NOW.
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People who added this item 1250 Average listal rating (723 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.1
Mary and Max (2009)
Throughout 2010 I kept seeing this film in various Listal users' best-of lists, so I added it to my instant queue to check it out. Once I finally did, I understood why it received all the praise. It's extremely rare that an animated movie contains such complex characters that you believe they exist in the real world. The story is brilliant and unpredictable, with a perfect mix of humor and tragedy, lightness and darkness, wit and emotion. It's so true to life, without feeling like a documentary or coming off as pretentious.

By far the best animated film of the 00s.
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People who added this item 5016 Average listal rating (3202 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 8.5
Memento (2000)
Still the best of Nolan's films, Memento took everything we thought we knew about storytelling and flipped it around...literally. We can only experience the tale through Leonard Shelby, and with his damaged short-term memory that poses for a compelling, fragmented trip. Every moment in this movie shows the time and care that Nolan put into it, and gave most people their first glimpse of what we could expect from him in the future. As you'll see, this isn't his only film I gave top marks to, and his sharp focus and dedication to his vision are what have earned his films the high regard in which I hold them.
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People who added this item 3064 Average listal rating (1929 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.4
Oldboy (2003)
One of the best revenge movies I've ever seen. A man gets locked away for 15 years, with no idea who did it to him or why. Then after all that time he's released, waking up in a different location, still without any explanation. Wouldn't YOU want to get some answers?

I love the way it starts off in the middle, then goes back to the beginning and works its way forward. The performances are excellent all around, and the ending will knock you out of your seat.
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People who added this item 5618 Average listal rating (3635 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8.1
Donnie Darko (2001)
This is one of those movies that people find through word of mouth, and then you immediately call all your friends and pass it on to them. That's a sign of a special movie. Richard Kelly's film is definitely original, and the cast helps bring the tale to life. I was disappointed by the director's cut, which explained everything that was going on instead of leaving it up to the viewer to figure out. The original theatrical version is superior for leaving it all a mystery, and for those of us who had to revisit a couple times before figuring out what exactly was going on it's still rewarding and just as entertaining as it is the first time around.

Great movies should stick with you, and Donnie Darko succeeds wonderfully.
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People who added this item 1799 Average listal rating (1034 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.6
Grindhouse (2007)
By far my favorite moviegoing experience of the 00s was going opening night to see Grindhouse. Those who held off for the DVD releases got screwed out of that, though you have a chance to make up for it now that it's been put back together & released exclusively on blu-ray (a fact that's finally got me seriously considering buying a blu-ray player). The full experience kicks off with the Machete trailer, followed by Rodriguez's Planet Terror, a fun zombie film from start to finish. Then you're treated to a trio of faux trailers from Rob Zombie, Edgar Wright, and Eli Roth, with some faux ads thrown in between before finally jumping into Tarantino's Death Proof. The DVD releases proved that each half was solid on its own (though I go back & forth on whether the extended Death Proof is any improvement, as I loved it the way I saw it before), but the full Grindhouse experience enhances your viewing pleasure. The faux trailers provide comic relief and ramp up your excitement for the latter film. Best of all, the theatrical release allowed those of us who went the chance to see 2 movies for the price of one, and how often does that happen?

Side note to those who complained about the dialogue in Death Proof: it's not supposed to be great dialogue, that's part of the whole Grindhouse thing.
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People who added this item 2667 Average listal rating (1612 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.1
Everything about this film is perfect. I could explain why, but I know that enough ink has already been spilled in that vein by critics to rival the recent gulf oil spills. PT Anderson continues to make the best films I've ever experienced, and I expect him to do so for many years to come.
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People who added this item 581 Average listal rating (345 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.8
A brilliant fictionalized version of the events of the Stanford Prison Experiment, and thus a thought-provoking exploration of how humans will behave under stressful conditions in close quarters. The entire cast gives perfect performances, and the various technical aspects impress as well when you're not completely submerged in the story & events. It's not often I leave my couch & move closer to the TV during a film's final moments in excitement & anticipation of what's to come.
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People who added this item 2849 Average listal rating (1911 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 7.2
Unbreakable (2000)
My all-time favorite comic-book-inspired movie. It's a shame Shyamalan has never taken this much time and care with any of the films that followed.

As I've said before, what he delivered is by far the best superhero origin tale ever to hit the big screen. It explores the relationship between good and evil, the nature of heroes and villains, and incorporates comic book mythologies and artistic techniques to do so. I hate to say too much & ruin the film for anyone who hasn't seen it (if you haven't, go watch it. NOW.), so I'll skip the plot particulars. Suffice it to say the story is compelling, the acting believable and outstanding, the cinematography, directing, even the score...all excellent.
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People who added this item 354 Average listal rating (223 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.9
This dark comedy pushes boundaries and defies expectations. Robin Williams gives his best performance of the 00s, and Goldthwait's script is pure perfection.
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People who added this item 871 Average listal rating (414 ratings) 6.4 IMDB Rating 6.5
Tideland (2005)
Gilliam has long been one of my favorite filmmakers, so of course his only film of the 00s would be here (Parnassus came out here Jan 2010). Jodelle Ferland is AMAZING as Jeliza-Rose, a child stuck in very unfortunate circumstances. And Gilliam expertly shows us how she survives those circumstances while maintaining her childish perspective. A beautiful film that'll break your heart while giving you hope.
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People who added this item 5211 Average listal rating (3439 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 8.3
Another movie I shouldn't have to explain why it's great. Even those disappointed with Kill Bill and Death Proof were won over again by this film.
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People who added this item 5246 Average listal rating (3470 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.3
Amélie (2001)
Given that most people seem to have this on their best-of lists as well, I don't feel the need to explain why it's on mine either.
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People who added this item 5447 Average listal rating (3440 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8
Big Fish (2003)
Burton's best film of the 00s was this tribute to the power and virtues of storytelling. Heartfelt, moving, and visually stunning, with outstanding performances from the entire cast.
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People who added this item 1277 Average listal rating (876 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.8
One of the most original films of the 00s. How many martial arts movies have dance numbers and action sequences that recall Looney Tunes? It's visually amazing, and the story is even better than Shaolin Soccer.
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People who added this item 3502 Average listal rating (2315 ratings) 6.4 IMDB Rating 7.3
Borat (2006)
Hands down the funniest movie of the 00s. The first time I saw it I laughed until I cried and almost fell out of my seat. The naked fight scene is the funniest thing I've seen in years, and still makes me laugh uncontrollably. Cohen fully inhabits his character, and his unsuspecting victims provide great moments and deep insight into the often hidden, darker side of America. How he stayed in character while interacting with some of the people he met I'll never know.
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People who added this item 3385 Average listal rating (2209 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.9
My favorite dystopian tale of the 00s, brought powerfully to life by the performances and cinematography. Bleak, yet hopeful, and excellent social commentary.
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People who added this item 562 Average listal rating (373 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 7.2
Bubba Ho-Tep (2002)
A truly original film, Bubba Ho-tep is highly entertaining with its unusual premise, dark humor, and stellar performances. Bruce Campbell is perfect in his role as Elvis Presley, alive & well in a nursing home in Texas, and Ossie Davis is equally perfect as a disguised JFK in the same situation. Watching them tangle with a soul-sucking mummy and old age at the same time is a treat.
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People who added this item 1428 Average listal rating (771 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.3
Gondry's follow-up to Eternal Sunshine may not be quite as perfect, but it's excellent in its own right. A celebration of imagination, there are so many great, creative visuals that stick with you long after you've watched it. The love story at its center is more realistic than most films in the way it plays out, and the acting performances are perfect, especially Gael Garcia Bernal and Charlotte Gainsbourg.
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People who added this item 1411 Average listal rating (872 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 7.3
Adam Sandler's best performance, one that makes me wish he'd give up dumb comedies and stick with dramas instead. (Reign Over Me also makes me feel that way) Another excellent film from PT Anderson.
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People who added this item 968 Average listal rating (630 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.2
The Strangers (2008)
As I said elsewhere, The Strangers was the first film to truly, deeply scare me since I'd vowed not to let that happen anymore (about 20 years later to be more specific). I'd reached a point where I didn't think horror films could do it anymore, so when this finally succeeded it immediately earned a spot at the top.

I love the way it introduces our main characters without dialogue, letting their facial expressions, appearance, and body language tell us their present emotional states. Then it takes the time to develop their characters so we start to care about them. And then the so-called strangers show up and the torment begins. And what glorious, well-executed (no pun intended) torment it is.

If you've never seen this, I recommend you watch it alone or with one friend that will keep quiet throughout the film (a big group won't work). Let it work its magic on you. Make sure you turn it up loud like it would be in the theatre, so you can hear every noise. And if it doesn't scare you at all then there may be something wrong with you.
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People who added this item 7410 Average listal rating (4909 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 9
Easily the best Batman film to date. Nolan has brought Batman and co. fully into the modern-day world, and this film built off its predecessor with a multi-layered story superbly executed. Ledger marries the Joker with Tyler Durden to create one of the best film villains of all-time (too bad he could only do that trick once). And as the film comes to a close, you're left wanting more. I sit on pins & needles awaiting its sequel.
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People who added this item 2519 Average listal rating (1626 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.8
The Coens version of The Odyssey is one of the most fun films I've ever seen. The acting is great all around, the soundtrack is excellent, and the story is worth revisiting on a regular basis.
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People who added this item 6735 Average listal rating (4450 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 8
Pixar's best film of the 00s (and currently my favorite of all of theirs)...a great superhero story as well as a great tale about the importance of family. It's hilarious, action-packed, heartfelt, and takes a unique look at (super)heroes.
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People who added this item 697 Average listal rating (320 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7.1
Original, beautiful, and brilliant. Chan-wook Park directs the second masterpiece I've seen of his, and while I could say more I refuse to. I went into this film knowing nothing other than that he directed & co-wrote it, and I don't want anyone else to know more than that either.
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People who added this item 3731 Average listal rating (2561 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8
The best zombedy of the 00s, with its references to other zombie (and non-zombie) films sprinkled throughout, a great cast, great script, and great soundtrack. How many movies can successfully combine romance, comedy and horror with each getting an equal share of screen time? I can only think of one.
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People who added this item 3076 Average listal rating (2069 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 8
District 9 (2009)
An alien movie shot as a documentary? Sign me up! I love the idea, love the way it's put together so that it all feels like you're really watching it happen, and to top it off it also works as great social commentary. The performances from the relatively unknown actors also help make it more believable.
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People who added this item 534 Average listal rating (284 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.7
May (2002)
Again: This one surprised me, but then I had no idea what to expect going into it (and I find that's the best way to go into any movie).

Angela Bettis is perfect as May, a young woman who goes from sweet and misunderstood to confident and sadistic. That's not an easy transition to make, but Bettis does so with seeming ease. It's a really different horror film, and that's probably why I like it so well.
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People who added this item 2120 Average listal rating (1383 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.4
Up in the Air (2009)
One of the most honest films of the 00s, it dodges Hollywood trappings in favor of staying realistic. It looks unflinchingly at modern-day downsizing and romance, and the performances are excellent. I especially like how they used actual people voicing their responses to having lost their jobs in real life to ground it even more in reality.
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People who added this item 3909 Average listal rating (2544 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 8.1
I shouldn't have to explain this one either. And yes, Javier Bardem is awesome as Anton Chigurh, one of the best villains in cinema history.
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People who added this item 7067 Average listal rating (4556 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8.2
Dystopian goodness. Though not entirely faithful to the source material, the changes work well, and the casting is perfect. Every time I watch it I like it a little more.
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People who added this item 3543 Average listal rating (2325 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.6
28 Days Later (2002)
Apparently some people like to debate whether fast zombies or slow zombies are better. I say both have their merits. With the faster ones, you have to be constantly on your guard and ready to run or fight without any notice. That's far more dangerous than knowing you have enough time to get away.

I love Alex Garland's script, and Danny Boyle expertly brings the horrors to life. It all looks and feels REAL. Also, the blood and gore makes me truly happy.
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People who added this item 2839 Average listal rating (1658 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.7
The Machinist (2004)
Such a great, weird, dark movie...everyone talks about Christian Bale's weight loss, and while that's remarkable the thing that I remember most is watching it again knowing how it ended & still being surprised by it. I love the way it's shot...the look, the feel of it. I love the performances as every one is believable. And most of all I love the tale & the way it's told.
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People who added this item 7072 Average listal rating (4738 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 8.3
Batman Begins (2005)
Nolan's origin tale for Batman far exceeds Burton's from the start. This time around we truly understand and care about where Batman comes from and what he stands for, and it's more believable because this version of Gotham and its inhabitants isn't so far off from modern-day reality (though obviously it's a dark view). Batman faces his fears and learns to take care in who he trusts in order to completely embrace his role as Gotham's protector and hero. The cast is perfect, and you can tell Nolan knows exactly where the following films will go.
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People who added this item 4858 Average listal rating (3163 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 8.5
The Prestige (2006)
Hmm...guess I didn't miss any of Nolan's films, eh? Far better than its rival The Illusionist, The Prestige has plenty of tricks up its sleeve, excellent performances, and David Bowie playing Nikola Tesla. Awesome? Yes.
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People who added this item 3451 Average listal rating (2290 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 8.3
Snatch (2000)
Remember when Guy Ritchie was awesome? How it only lasted for 2 films, I'll never know. At any rate, this is a great, fun heist film, swiftly paced with plenty of action, humor, and excellent performances from the ensemble cast.
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People who added this item 850 Average listal rating (581 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6
I love this movie. It opens by bringing back memories of watching cheesy horror films on TV as a kid, draws inspiration from Texas Chainsaw Massacre & Alice in Wonderland, and ends up as an excellent homage to horror films as a whole. Rob Zombie makes watching stupid teens get what's coming to them for sticking their noses where they don't belong thoroughly entertaining.

Plus all the villains are named after Marx Brothers characters, which rocks. Sid Haig almost steals the whole movie though as Captain Spaulding.
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People who added this item 1148 Average listal rating (612 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 7.1
Sam Rockwell is so underrated and overlooked, which is a shame. I can't think of a performance he's given I didn't enjoy, and his portrayal of Chuck Barris tops them all for me (so far at least). Kaufman's script is excellent at telling such a fantastic story without taking itself too seriously, and it works on multiple levels without once derailing.
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People who added this item 637 Average listal rating (391 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.5
Excellent biopic and adaptation of Harvey Pekar's comic book, which focuses primarily on his life and his thoughts. The performances are outstanding, and the film serves as a good introduction to the man and his work.
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People who added this item 622 Average listal rating (371 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 6.9
The Majestic (2001)
The Majestic's timing seems perfect in retrospect, coming out at the end of 2001 when America was looking for a scapegoat for 9/11 and questioning the patriotism of those who didn't want to rush off to war. While those sentiments are reflected in the McCarthy-era blacklist witch hunt that Carrey's Peter Appleton gets sucked into, at the heart of this movie is the value of standing up for what you know is right, regardless of the consequences. It's also a celebration of the effect that movies can have on us, whether transporting us to another time and place or bringing back memories of past experiences. All of which makes it a great film, no matter how many times I watch it.
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People who added this item 1362 Average listal rating (823 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.8
One of the best docudramas/biopics of the 00s. Unlike most other films that fell into that category, this one focuses on 2 main characters and takes the time to strongly develop both. The events are told with great care and passion, the performances are excellent, and there's not a slow moment in the entire film.
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People who added this item 217 Average listal rating (97 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.3
I couldn't help but love this film with its Caligari-esque sets & overall presentation. The film has been manipulated to look like it's from the silent era & for the most part it succeeds in replicating the look of those films. Plus as Lovecraft adaptations go it's damn near perfect & easily the best.
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My top 41 of the 00s, listed somewhat in order...though since I've given every film on this list a 10/10, you can imagine that some would fluctuate positions. I could have included my 9/10s, but that list would've been far longer than I'm sure anyone would want to look through (add at least 100 to this list).

Also, I left out documentaries to keep the focus on fictional films. Had I included them, they would be: Breakfast with Hunter, Super Size Me, Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, Young @ Heart, and Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride.

Finally it should be noted that this list is subject to grow, as I'm always catching up on movies I've missed.

Last update: 8/23/12

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Comments

Posted: 7 years, 1 month ago at Nov 6 2:24
This looks like it was a very big effort on your part. I really enjoyed reading your reviews!
I especially like how they used actual people voicing their responses to having lost their jobs in real life to ground it even more in reality.

I didn't know that. It's interesting - how did they do this?
Posted: 7 years, 1 month ago at Nov 6 17:33
nice list! you give me a film to watch!
Posted: 7 years, 1 month ago at Nov 8 19:31
Well done sir! Thanks for putting in some real time to share your enthusiasm for quality film!
Posted: 7 years ago at Dec 10 13:52
I don't share your enthousiasm for some of those movies but still a very interesting list.

On 24 movies, I gave (at least) a 08/10 rate so some pretty good stuff.

Check mine ! http://www.listal.com/list/top-ten-best-movies-00s
Posted: 6 years, 5 months ago at Jul 16 20:49
nice list, prestige is definitely better than the illusionist but illusionist aint that bad either. i'd give 8 to illusionist and 10 to prestige! :D

some of these movies, hmm i might not praise that high but i really enjoyed your enthusiasm for them! way to go! :)
Posted: 6 years, 4 months ago at Jul 22 0:47
Fantastic list! I love some of the same movies, especially Eternal Sunshine. I finally saw Memento last night. It was terrific. I can't remember the last time a movie held my attention so closely.
Posted: 6 years, 4 months ago at Jul 22 9:50
Just checked this list again. A very very good selection!
However, I don't agree about Kill Bill when you say that they should have put it alltogether. I'm pretty sure that, expect you, almost no one would have wanted to see 4 hours of Tarantino. The audience nowadays barely can stand 3 hours of movie, so with 4 hours, it would have been a huge flop. So, I think the idea to split the movie in 2 was wise.
Posted: 6 years, 4 months ago at Jul 22 17:43
I can see why Miramax divided Kill Bill, but I still think it's wrong. And the full 4-hour version screened earlier this year in L.A. to a sold-out audience, so clearly I'm not the only one who would want to watch it. So while it's true that the average moviegoer wouldn't bother sitting through it without splitting it up, I think there should've been an option for those of us who would. Hopefully it'll continue to make the rounds and eventually get released on DVD for those of us who want it.

But my biggest complaint is that your average moviegoer also got left with the misconception that vol. 2 is a sequel, when in fact it's the other half of the movie. And I'll probably always feel a need to correct people on that haha.
Posted: 6 years, 2 months ago at Sep 17 16:01
Nice movies. Some of them i need to check out.
Posted: 6 years, 2 months ago at Sep 20 1:21
Excellent choices. I have seen 23 of them, and agree on just about every one. I never was a big fan of Donnie Darko, but plan to see it again, as I was very young the first viewing.

Props to you!
Posted: 5 years, 4 months ago at Aug 11 22:00
@.roger. - I didn't forget City of God. Rather I haven't got around to seeing it yet.
Posted: 5 years, 4 months ago at Aug 11 22:52
I really like this list. Great job!
Posted: 3 years ago at Dec 10 12:19
Your comment on Batman Begins couldn't be any more spot on :D

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