RANKING THE YEAR’S BEST: FROM OSCAR MOVIES TO BLOCKBUSTERS
Walk down memory lane… And let the movie nerd debate begin.
Let’s REWIND to the year 2005.
These are personal TOP 10s ranking Oscar-nominated movies right alongside popcorn-munching blockbusters, indie films, b-movies, and cult classics. You never know, you might even uncover a hidden gem or two.
2005 was the year of underrated cinema… and from all over the globe. My Top 10 for 2005 will probably look a lot different than any other. The #1 movie at the box office was HARRY POTTER & THE GOBLET OF FIRE with $896.9 million worldwide. The honorable mentions are definitely worth watching, with the year packed with goodness like THE PROPOSITION and WHERE THE TRUTH LIES. There were also a few big budget turds like AEON FLUX, CHARLIE & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, DOOM, and ELEKTRA.
My TOP 10 is followed by HONORABLE MENTIONS and the Best of ART VS POPCORN.
Let’s dig in…
THE TOP 10
10. SIN CITY
FROM DUSK TILL DAWN & DESPERADO director Robert Rodriguez perfectly adapted Frank Miller’s noir comic for the cinema. Filmed entirely against green screens, the movie feels like it’s part of its own super stylish world. Stars the likes of Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Josh Hartnett, Brittany Murphy, Rosario Dawson, Clive Owen, and Benicio del Toro, with a segment directed by Quentin Tarantino.
9. KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
Ridley Scott (GLADIATOR) stylishly directs this historical adaptation of the Crusades with ancient Christians battling Muslims. Stars Orlando Bloom as a knight and Liam Neeson as his
Jedi Master Mentor. The Director’s Cut (as with other Scott films) is superior and worth tracking down.
8. SHAKE HANDS WITH THE DEVIL
This emotional documentary spotlights Romeo Dallaire, a Canadian UN operative in Rwanda during its genocide. He is haunted by what he witnessed and feels regret for not getting more attention to the tragedy. Brilliant.
7. KISS KISS BANG BANG
Shane Black (THE NICE GUYS, LETHAL WEAPON) writes and directs this neo-noir comedy starring Robert Downey Jr (before he was IRON MAN) and Val Kilmer. The dialogue crackles while the story unfolds is unexpected and chaotically delightful.
6. THE DESCENT
Neil Marshall (DOG SOLDIERS, CENTURION, GAME OF THRONES) directs this claustrophobic pulse-pounder of a horror flick. This stylish cult classic blew up with word of mouth. A group of women take a weekend adventure and explore a cave… only to discover something menacing below. Entirely exciting and incredibly intense.
5. BATMAN BEGINS
Christopher Nolan (MEMENTO) revived the BATMAN franchise by taking a Frank Miller approach (re: kept it dark). The stylish director focused on the realism of the comic book and helped create the superhero blockbuster long before Marvel arrived on the big screen.
4. HAUTE TENSION
One of the best horror films of the decade milks the ‘tension’ for every drop. Also known as SWITCHBLADE ROMANCE, this French cult classic actually has a story and multi-dimensional characters. Initially terrifying and goretastic, the film explores more psychological territory veering from guilty pleasure b-movie territory. This is not for the tame of heart. This is relentless. Super stylish with a totally rad synth score, this film loves the genre and pays homage to the American slasher in all the best ways. Truly impressive!
This underrated hidden gem quietly works its way under your skin. The less you know about this taut French thriller the better. Amazing writing and astounding performances makes every moment enthralling.
2. THE SQUID & THE WHALE
Noah Baumbach writes and directs this quirky yet melancholic character study filled with eccentricities. Jeff Daniels, Jesse Eisenberg, and Laura Linney deliver fantastic performances in this honest drama about relationships.
Rian Johnson (LOOPER, STAR WARS: EPISODE 8) writes and directs this high school noir starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as an unlikely detective-like hero solving a murder mystery involving a seedy teenage criminal underworld. Phenomenal storytelling and firecracker dialogue masterfully compliment the cinematic compositions. Beautiful and haunting. A true hidden gem cult classic that should garner a lot more attention as Johnson becomes more of a recognized brand-name like other rising indie star Denis Villeneuve.
THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA: THE LION, THE WITCH & THE WARDROBE / THE CONSTANT GARDENER / THE DEVIL’S REJECTS / GRIZZLY MAN / HUSTLE & FLOW / JARHEAD / THE MATADOR / MURDERBALL / THE PROPOSITION / TSOTSI
THE BEST OF ART VS POPCORN
THE 40-YEAR OLD VIRGIN / ALIENS OF THE DEEP / THE ARISTOCRATS / BROKEN FLOWERS / CONSTANTINE / CRASH / DOMINO / THE EXORCISM OF EMILY ROSE / GOOD NIGHT & GOOD LUCK / A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE / A HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY / HOSTEL / HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE / INTO THE BLUE / THE ISLAND / THE JACKET / JUST FRIENDS / KING KONG / LAST DAYS / LORDS OF DOGTOWN / MR. & MRS. SMITH / MUNICH / THE NEW WORLD / RIZE / SERENITY / STAR WARS: REVENGE OF THE SITH / SYRIANA / WAITING / WAR OF THE WORLDS / WATER / WEDDING CRASHERS / WHERE THE TRUTH LIES / WOLF CREEK / ZATHURA
MY MUST-WATCH LIST
THE BEAT THAT MY HEART SKIPPED / BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN / CAPOTE / THE CAVE OF THE YELLOW DOG / CINDERELLA MAN / HITCH / MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA / PRIDE & PREJUDICE / THE PUFFY CHAIR / TRANSAMERICA / USHPIZIN / WALK THE LINE / THE WORLD’S FASTEST INDIAN
What do you think?
Stay tuned for Rewind & Rank: 1995.