I would like to think that the movies of 2001 weren't as bad as the wretched crop of 2000. I'm sorry to say that I can't really
tell you. 2000 was such a bummer movie-wise that in 2001, I started asking myself if I really wanted to see what the buzz was
about each week. Often as not, the answer was no.
So, where I probably saw 80-90 movies in 2000, I might have seen 50 in 2001. Here my favorites of the ones I saw (and in
an odd incidence, didn't see).
By the way, yes, I saw Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Vanilla Sky, and most of the things you'll see on more official lists. But
you won't find them here. After all, I am the one who thought that the best film of 1999 was Dogma, and the best of 2000
was the re-release of The Exorcist. If you'd like review those lists in their entirety, click the links at left.
So here's my list...
10. Gosford Park My favorite director (Robert Altman) and a great cast that look like they all had a wonderful time making
9. The Tailor of Panama Since the collapse of the Evil Empire, spy movies just haven't been the same. This thriller with
Pierce Brosnan and Geoffrey Rush, was a welcome return to the glory days.
8. Amelie Definitely, "that kind of thing"--but I like that kind of thing, and this was definitely a lot perkier than Chocolat.
7. From Hell I'm not as much of a Johnny Depp fan as lots of other people are (see what I just said about Chocolat), but he
definitely pulled off this Victorian nightmare.
6. Ghost World The movie that proves that sometimes, people even stalk Steve Buscemi. Thora Birch in the cat mask was
worth the price of admission.
5. A Beautiful Mind Russell Crowe: "Are you not entertained?"
Audience: "Yes, we are!" It's definitely the best film about mental illness in a year in which that
seemed to be a theme for movies. It will probably win "Best Picture" in March.
4. The Deep End This was a very powerful drama about a mother would do to protect her child. I'd hate to think that Tilda
Swinton's performance might be overlooked at award time.
3. Moulin Rouge Either you loved it or you hated it--and a lot of people seem to do both--but I suspect that we'll never look
at movie musicals quite the same way again. (At the very least, you'll never look at The Sound of Music the same way
2. Memento OK, so it's not REALLY the first time a story has been told this way, but it is certainly the best example of a
story that is told from the end to the beginning. Guy Pearce is almost as good as he was in LA Confidential.
1. The Majestic Sure, you scoff now. But in the years ahead, you'll think of this Frank Darabont movie
the same way you think about his The Shawshank Redemption. You'll swear that it's always been one of your
favorites. Jim Carrey continues to be one of America's least appreciated actors.
MATT'S TOP TEN MOVIES OF 2001