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Our top 10's of 2000 - Time to throw down (1 Viewer)

Seth Paxton

Senior HTF Member
Nov 5, 1998
I figured we might as well get a thread going devoted to hashing these out. What I have in mind is a thread where your first post is your top 10 list (and bottom if you choose). Then as you see other films and want to modify your list, post a reply that about the new film BUT just go back and edit your list (maybe add a "changed on" date).
We can discuss to, but maybe make your top 10 list clean except for maybe a brief comment about each film. I'll go first and stick my neck out there. Oh, you might mention other films that you feel might make it on your list when you get to see them. I know we've done this sorta elsewhere, but this will be more official.

Seth Paxton

Senior HTF Member
Nov 5, 1998
Seth's List - FINAL
Well, I liked Jason's screen caps so much that I made some of my own. The aspect ratio is correct but most of these caps are modified from what I could find online and are actually cropped to the OAR and lose info.
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1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
(Adventure, emotion, action...all done so well and wrapped in a gorgeous bundle of cinematography)
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2. Traffic
(almost a modern epic with the large cast and scope, but woven tightly together in small film style. It feels personal and big at the same time)
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3. You Can Count on Me
(as true as characters can get. Linney deserved her nomination, and Ruffalo was robbed to not get one as well)
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4. Yi Yi
(it takes seeing through the eyes of every member of a family to understand how much we can't know, and to realize that maybe we don't need second chances, maybe we got it right the first time)
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5. Almost Famous
(maybe too feel-good at the end for some but like Erin B, being audiance friendly doesn't have to be a bad thing. That half the fun is getting there is what makes this film great. A wonderful journey)
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6. Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?
(an inspiring blend of comedy and music with a beautiful fantasy 30's backdrop - Coens progress in their film abilities)
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7. Requiem for a Dream
(about as big a bundle of joy as Midnight Cowboy and the end goes on a bit longer than needed I think...but still crazy powerful storytelling and Burstyn ruled)
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8. Erin Brockovich
(just because a guy makes a masterpiece that appeals to the masses it doesn't mean it's not artfully done. In fact it's ability to be both art and pop is one of it's strengths)
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9. Before Night Falls
(presented in a beautifully tender way, with a wonderful, wonderful score. This film makes the Chocolat nomination an even bigger joke since they nominated Bardem anyway.)
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10. High Fidelity
(I liked the character development, and this film just holds a place in my heart that keeps it in the top 10)
(in rough order)
2nd tier (11-20) - Billy Elliot, Jesus' Son, Tigerland, 13 Days, Cast Away, Emperor's New Groove, Dancer in the Dark, The Contender, Snatch, Sunshine
3rd tier (21-30) - Wonder Boys, Best in Show, Nurse Betty, Remember the Titans, The Virgin Suicides, Shadow of the Vampire, The House of Mirth, Quills, X-Men, Pollock
All your lists are belong to us
Someone set us up the list
[Edited last by Seth Paxton on July 30, 2001 at 12:17 AM]
[Edited last by Seth Paxton on July 30, 2001 at 12:18 AM]


Senior HTF Member
Apr 20, 1999
Real Name
It's about time someone started this thread. Moderators, please keep this in the Movies area and don't move it to the Polls area.
Thi's List:
1. Almost Famous
2. You Can Count On Me
3. Traffic
4. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
5 Requiem for a Dream
6. High Fidelity
7. Nurse Betty
8. Chicken Run
9. O Brother Where Art Thou
10. Erin Brockovich

Jason Whyte

Jun 3, 1999
Updated: SURPRISE! 4/03/01
Top 12
1. Requiem For A Dream
Darren Aronofsky - 1.85:1 - 102 min

By far, Aronofsky's emotionally shattering tale of the human soul and the desperation for drugs, is the strongest film of the year. It left a number on me as I viewed it. Twice. This is a challenging anti-drug film, powered by Aronofsky's amazing direction and flawless editing, with Clint Mansell's haunting score and amazing casting, the standout Ellen Burstyn's surprisingly devestating performance as an star-struck woman, strung out on diet pills.
2. Dancer In The Dark
Lars Von Trier - 2.40:1 - 140 min.

Lars Von Trier's "Dancer In The Dark" is like nothing I have ever seen before, a complete original in design, excecution and character study. Even with the film's jerky camera movement, startling realism and scary digital video quality, the movie surprisingly stands up to repeat viewings. After seeing it twice, Trier's examination of Selma, a Czech mother whose life is falling apart, will certainly reward some viewers and anger others through its subject matter and ways of storytelling. See it for yourself.
3. In The Mood For Love
Wong Kar-Wai - 1.85:1 - 98 min.
4. Almost Famous
Cameron Crowe - 1.85:1 - 124 min.
I have a soft spot for Cameron Crowe, but here, in his best film, which is smart, funny, revealing and timeless, he tells the story of basically himself at 15, here as William Miller (Patrick Fugit) a budding rock writer who follows the band Stillwater for Rolling Stone. Crowe wonderfully captures the pleasure and the freedom of the time, a decade where people simply did what they wanted. That life, sadly, does not exist anymore. Crowe knows this.
5. Traffic
Steven Soderbergh - 1.85:1 - 147 min.
"Traffic" is creative. It's also a huge, sprawling, daring film, where four stories of The War On Drugs sort of connect and they don't. Yet it is also one big story of the deals of the trade, and director Steven Soderbergh (who also made this year's excellent "Erin Brockovich"), with writer Stephen Gaghan, show the problems of this world, with some lives saved, some not.
6. Cast Away
Robert Zemeckis - 1.85:1 - 145 min.
Zemeckis' "Cast Away" is a conventional story, told unconventially. To me, the emotional devesation of Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks), marooned on a deserted island with no chance of escape, is incredible. There's so many moments in the film of humanity, that the beginning, the middle, and the end, are all equally compelling.
7. The Contender
Rod Lurie - 1.85:1 - 127 min.
I'm interested in American politics and their flaws. So is Rod Lurie, who has made a very realistic drama about a female senator becoming the Vice President, and is at the heat of Congress for her past. Powering this film is Gary Oldman at his finest as a wily congressman, and an amazing Joan Allen as a strong, passionate senator who is smart at what she says and doesn't say.
8. Wonder Boys
Curtis Hanson - 2.40:1 - 112 min.
Seen again recently, Curtis Hanson's "Wonder Boys" is a riveting character study of Grady Tripp (a fascinating Michael Douglas, who has never felt more REAL here) as a University professor at the end of his rope: working on his opus of a novel, caring for a starving student (Tobey Maguire, one of the best actors in his age group) and fighting all of his personal problems. It focuses less on plot and more on the quirky characters surrounding Grady's life. And it has TALKING, too, the back and forth of conversation that lacks in so many films today. Remarkable.
9. The Cell
Tarsem Singh - 2.40:1 - 107 min.
A picture tells a thousand words, and "The Cell" has 1000 of them. Tarsem Singh's movie is a visual masterpiece, yet also a severely powerful and emotionally shattering piece of filmmaking, that combines an FBI pursuit, a virtual reality program, and a deranged serial killer into a
terrifying whole. Singh's visuals are like poetry, thus the underlying power of the film: the visuals speak more than the plot itself, and are unexplainable gems. Jennifer Lopez, Vincent Vaughn and Vincent D'Onfronio, while a tad slight here and there, are still really good as speakers
of Singh's opera. "The Cell" is a beautiful, poetic landmark of a film that has been dismissed by moviegoers that go into "plot" mode and have been unfairly comparing this to "The Silence of the Lambs" and/or "Seven." "The Cell", which is just as good of a film, is not similar in any way to these two films, nor any other.
10. New Waterford Girl
Allan Moyle - 1.85:1 - 100 min.
I was wrong in stating that "you will be hearing about this" in my original review, since the film was never released in the United States and probably never will. This is a wonderful little movie by director Allen Moyle ("Pump Up The Volume" and "Empire Records," the latter still being
loved by the "Yeah, you know, whatever" kids) about sullen girl Mooney Pottie (Liane Balaban, Canada's answer to Natalie Portman) who wants out of her Cape Breton town, and finds solace and release in teenage girl Lou Benzoa (A fascinating and real Tara Spencer-Nairn) who has escaped to Cape Breton with her mother and loves it. The movie is unique in the way it shows its characters, as well as in the 70's loaded soundtrack. Now all this film is screaming for is an American distributor to let itself be known.
11. High Fidelity
Stephen Frears - 1.85:1 - 112 min.
Until July, this was my choice for film of the year. Then all the other films rolled in. But this is still an amazing film. It is about relationships. It is about life. It is a movie about love. "High Fidelity" is all of these things, the kind of irresistable character study that is so rarely shown anymore. It tells the story of Rob (John Cusack) who chronicles his past relationships like a Top 5 record list. Through the story, Rob learns to better himself with what he has and the mistakes that he has made. Stephen Frears, who wisely moves the original novel idea from London to Chicago, shows that people have dreams and desires, yet are flawed. Rob is like any person you have met, and at the end of the movie, I feel like I could go out and meet this guy for a drink.
12. You Can Count On Me
Kenneth Longergan - 1.85:1 - 109 min.
While not perfect, Kenneth Longergan's amazing look into a drifter who comes into a small town to visit his sister, is not an original idea, but it's execution is: with perfectly chosen edits (watch the opening scene for a perfect example that explanation is not exactly required), award worthy
performances by Laura Linney as a single mother at her wit's end and Mark Ruffalo as a troubled brother, and Longergan's wise ways of showing characters just doing something. It's rare to admire and cherish such a film, even if we've seen it before, but not nearly as great as this.
13 Honorable Mentions: (in no particular order)
American Psycho - Marry Harron has made a powerful look at a crazed killer (or is he?) in the Go-For-It 80's. Not only features the style, but the film LOOKS like it was made in the 80's, too.
Before Night Falls - An alternately beautiful and unsettling portrait of an artist in Cuba, Julian Schanabel's "Before Night Falls" shows our protagonist, Reinaldo Arenas (Javier Bardem) through his days as a child, to his open homosexuality, to his prison life, to his exile to New York. Beautifully shot and fluently told, even if it does leave out some years in his life where we wonder what happened to him during them.
Chicken Run - Dazzling fun, and its claymation is a beauty to behold. And who knew escaping chickens could be so cool? Nick Park and Chris Lord are the geniuses behind this classic.
Chuck and Buck - With its strong subject matter, Chuck and Buck can be a scary experience for some, but there lies its power. Miguel Artera's film feels all too real (it's shot in digital video for extra creepiness) with Mike White's implosive performance as a man obsessed with old friend Chuck (Paul Weitz).
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon - Ang Lee has made a soaring, beautiful film here, that is knee deep in fantasy about warriors, legends, love and fighting. What is great is that Lee gives each element equal treatment. There's great romance between a princess and the warrior she falls for, and even two Wudan trained warriors that hide their love from each other. The fight scenes are not always handled as a form to kill, rather one fighter outwitting the other. While not perfect, there's such a love for great storytelling, and even at just two hours in length, it is still an epic. The best fight scenes ever put down on film, however? I'd give that to Jackie Chan's "Drunken Master II."
Erin Brockovich - Julia Roberts is amazing in the other film by Traffic's Steven Soderbergh. A fabulous story of a strong woman up against an electric company, the movie has its loose ends, but its message is strong.
Nurse Betty - Renee Zellweger will finally recieve the attention she deserves, in a powerhouse performance as Betty, a troubled woman who dreams of being on her favorite soap opera show, and gets the chance. Even looking her most "plain," Zellweger is her at her best and most luminous.
Original Kings of Comedy, The - "The Original Kings of Comedy," based on the live comedy show of the same name, is the funniest movie of the year. And it's a documentary. The force behind this movie is Spike Lee, who brilliantly captures the comic stylings of Bernie Mac, Cedric the Entertainer, D.L. Hughley and host Steve Harvey (the next Richard Pryor) as they riff through everything wrong society, be it stupid people, movies, music, even white people, with hilarious results. It's been a while since I have laughed so hard, and save for "State and Main" and "Small Time Crooks," there is more laughs in this movie than all of the other comedies of 2000 put together. A great documentary.
Pups - A daring, shocking little indie of a film, about a 13 year old boy (an amazing Cameron Van Hoy) and his girlfriend (Mischa Barton) who decide to rob a bank. Fueled with all of their knowledge of life through television and the media, the kids represent everything bad that can happen when violence reaches our children.
Quills - Philip Kaufman's thoughtful retelling of the last days of the Marquis De Sade comes to be the most interesting "freedom of speech" story since "The People Vs. Larry Flynt." Geoffery Rush is amazing as Marquis.
State And Main - David Mamet has written a smart and literate screenplay, riddled with movie-talk, but it is also one of the funniest movies of the year, and knows it. Watch William H. Macy, a Mamet expert, steal the screen when David Paymer, Rebecca Pidgeon ("Kids? I just don't see the point."), and Phil Seymour Hoffman aren't doing so themselves. And watch the entire movie be smart, and us knowing it. Sure, that may sound crazy, but "so is the electoral process, but we still vote."
Thirteen Days - Proof that we can still make fine political thrillers without having to resort to Tom Clancy books. Roger Donaldson's best film features a strong storyline about the cuban missle crisis, featuring a surprisingly award-worthy performance by Bruce Greenwood as JFK, and is matched by Steven Culp as Bobby Kennedy, Kevin Costner as Kenny O'Donnell, and especially Dylan Baker as Robert McNamara.
The Way Of The Gun - Here is a movie that is a rip-roaring good time, the kind of western, 70's filmmaking that reminds me of the movies by Sidney Lumet, Sam Peckinpah and Francis Ford Coppola, that so rarely made anymore. It is your average kidnapping gone wrong story, but featuring characters interacting and thinking with one another, cute little touches of Hitchcockian betrayl, and a cool-as-ice Benicio Del Toro, who at one point does this quirky little wink. You'd be hard pressed not to return one.
Yet to see: Butterfly, Show Me Love, Malena, Bamboozled, The House Of Mirth, Malestrom, waydowntown
And yes, I've seen everything else. :)
Complete List
Eligible To-date Film Count: 141
Title/Out of ****/Aspect Ratio/Length
Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle *** 1.85:1 91 min.
All The Pretty Horses ** 2.40:1 118 min.
Almost Famous **** 1.85:1 124 min.
American Psycho ***1/2 2.40:1 102 min.
Art of War, The ** 2.40:1 116 min.
Autumn In New York **1/2 1.85:1 104 min.
Bait *** 2.40:1 119 min.
Battlefield Earth(no stars) 2.40:1 117 min.
Beach, The * 2.40:1 119 min.
Beautiful * 1.85:1 112 min.
Bedazzled *** 2.40:1 92 min.
Before Night Falls ***1/2 1.85:1 132 min.
Best In Show *** 1.85:1 92 min.
Big Kahuna, The *** 1.85:1 92 min.
Big Momma's House ** 1.85:1 98 min.
Billy Elliot *** 1.85:1 109 min.
Black and White ***1/2 2.40:1 100 min.
Bless The Child (no stars) 2.40:1 108 min.
Boiler Room *** 1.85:1 118 min.
Book Of Shadows - Blair Witch 2 * 1.85:1 90 min.
Bossa Nova **1/2 2.40:1 92 min.
Bounce *** 1.85:1 105 min.
Boys and Girls (no stars) 1.85:1 97 min.
Bring It On *1/2 1.85:1 97 min.
But I'm A Cheerleader *** 1.85:1 82 min.
Cast Away **** 1.85:1 145 min.
Cell, The **** 2.40:1 109 min.
Center Stage ***1/2 2.40:1 112 min.
Charlie's Angels * 2.40:1 95 min.
Chicken Run ***1/2 1.85:1 85 min.
Chocolat **1/2 1.85:1 122 min.
Chuck & Buck ***1/2 1.85:1 96 min.
Contender, The **** 1.85:1 127 min.
Coyote Ugly * 2.40:1 99 min.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon ***1/2 2.40:1 119 min.
Dancer In The Dark **** 2.40:1 142 min.
Dinosaur ** 1.85:1 84 min.
Down To You * 1.85:1 92 min.
Dracula 2000 *1/2 2.40:1 99 min.
Dr. Seuss' How The Grinch Stole Christmas *** 1.85:1 105 min.
Dr. T and the Women ***1/2 2.40:1 122 min.
Dude, Where's My Car? * 1.85:1 84 min.
Emperor's New Groove *** 1.85:1 76 min.
Erin Brockovich ***1/2 1.85:1 132 min.
Eye Of The Beholder * 2.40:1 100 min.
Family Man, The *** 2.40:1 124 min.
Final Destination ***1/2 1.85:1 96 min.
Finding Forrester *** 2.40:1 137 min.
Frequency *** 2.40:1 117 min.
Get Carter *1/2 2.40:1 102 min.
Gift, The *** 1.85:1 111 min.
Girlfight *** 1.85:1 110 min.
Gladiator *** 2.40:1 154 min.
Gone In Sixty Seconds * 2.40:1 116 min.
Groove *1/2 1.85:1 82 min.
Hamlet(2000) ***1/2 1.85:1 110 min.
Hanging Up * 1.85:1 94 min.
Here On Earth ** 1.85:1 97 min.
High Fidelity **** 1.85:1 115 min.
Hollow Man **1/2 1.85:1 112 min.
I Dreamed Of Africa * 2.40:1 114 min.
Keeping The Faith ** 1.85:1 129 min.
Kid, The *** 1.85:1 104 min.
Legend Of Bagger Vance **1/2 1.85:1 128 min.
Little Nicky (no stars) 1.85:1 87 min.
Loser *** 1.85:1 95 min.
Lost Souls *1/2 2.40:1 98 min.
Love's Labour's Lost *** 2.40:1 95 min.
Lucky Numbers ** 1.85:1 106 min.
Meet The Parents **1/2 1.85:1 104 min.
Me, Myself and Irene ** 1.85:1 116 min.
Men Of Honor *** 2.40:1 128 min.
Miss Congeniality *1/2 1.85:1 110 min.
Mission: Impossible 2 *1/2 2.40:1 124 min.
Mission To Mars (no stars) 2.40:1 113 min.
My Dog Skip ***1/2 1.85:1 95 min.
Next Best Thing, The * 1.85:1 107 min.
New Waterford Girl ***1/2 1.85:1 98 min.
Ninth Gate, The ** 2.40:1 135 min.
Nurse Betty ***1/2 2.40:1 110 min.
Nutty Professor II: The Klumps *** 1.85:1 105 min.
O Brother, Where Art Thou? *** 2.40:1 106 min.
102 Dalmations * 1.85:1 90 min.
Original Kings of Comedy, The ***1/2 1.85:1 112 min.
Passion Of Mind * 2.40:1 105 min.
Patriot, The *1/2 2.40:1 165 min.
Pay It Forward *** 1.85:1 122 min.
Perfect Storm, The *** 2.40:1 128 min.
Pitch Black *1/2 2.40:1 109 min.
Pollock *** 1.85:1 124 min.
Possible Worlds ** 1.85:1 92 min.
Proof of Life **1/2 2.40:1 132 min.
Pups ***1/2 1.85:1 101 min.
Quills ***1/2 1.85:1 124 min.
Ready To Rumble (no stars) 1.85:1 107 min.
Red Planet * 2.40:1 108 min.
Reindeer Games *1/2 2.40:1 104 min.
Remember The Titans *** 2.40:1 110 min.
Replacements, The *** 1.85:1 119 min.
Requiem For A Dream **** 1.85:1 104 min.
Return To Me ***1/2 1.85:1 117 min.
Road Trip *1/2 1.85:1 93 min.
Romeo Must Die ** 2.40:1 115 min.
Rugrats In Paris ***1/2 1.85:1 78 min.
Rules of Engagement**1/2 2.40:1 126 min.
Saving Grace *** 2.40:1 94 min.
Scary Movie * 2.40:1 85 min.
Scream 3 **1/2 2.40:1 117 min.
Shaft (2000) ** 2.40:1 98 min.
Shanghai Noon *** 2.40:1 110 min.
Sixth Day, The ** 2.40:1 124 min.
Skulls, The*1/2 1.85:1 107 min.
Small Time Crooks ***1/2 1.85:1 95 min.
Snatch **1/2 1.85:1 103 min.
Snow Day **1/2 1.85:1 89 min.
Space Cowboys *** 2.40:1 128 min.
Stardom ** 1.85:1 101 min.
State And Main ***1/2 1.85:1 106 min.
Supernova * 2.40:1 88 min.
Tao of Steve, The *** 1.85:1 85 min.
Thirteen Days ***1/2 1.85:1 146 min.
Time Code *** 1.85:1 95 min.
A Time For Drunken Horses ***1/2 1.85:1 80 min.
Titan A.E. ***1/2 2.40:1 95 min.
Traffic **** 1.85:1 147 min.
28 Days *** 1.85:1 102 min.
U-571 ** 2.40:1 117 min.
Unbreakable *** 2.40:1 106 min.
Up At The Villa** 1.85:1 115 min.
Vertical Limit ** 1.85:1 124 min.
Virgin Suicides, The ***1/2 1.85:1 96 min.
Watcher, The * 1.85:1 95 min.
Way of the Gun, The ***1/2 1.85:1 119 min.
Whatever It Takes * 1.85:1 94 min.
What Lies Beneath *1/2 2.40:1 128 min.
What Planet Are You From? * 1.85:1 107 min.
What Women Want *** 1.85:1 127 min.
Where The Heart Is* 1.85:1 119 min.
Where The Money Is *** 1.85:1 88 min.
Whole Nine Yards, The ***1/2 1.85:1 97 min.
Wonder Boys ***1/2 2.40:1 112 min.
X-Men *** 2.40:1 105 minutes.
You Can Count On Me ***1/2 1.85:1 110 min.
Films with USA/Canada releases that are ineligible for 2000 list
Closer You Get, The *** 1.85:1 92 min.
U.K. Film released in 1999
Croupier***1/2 1.85:1 98 min.
U.K. Film released in 1998
Fantasia 2000 ***1/2 1.85:1 75 min.
Advance and Public premiere screenings held in December, 1999
Five Senses, The ***1/2 1.85:1 104 min.
Canadian made film, Released in Canada in November, 1999
Legend Of Drunken Master ***1/2 2.40:1 102 min.
Re-release of a Chinese film made and released in 1994
Titus ***1/2 2.40:1 165 min.
Originally released for one week in December, 1999 for Oscar consideration
War Zone, The **** 2.40:1 98 min.
Released in US to film festival circuits in mid-1999, and in LA/NY in December, 1999
By Rating: (Currently under construction)
Almost Famous
Cast Away
Cell, The
Contender, The
Dancer In The Dark
High Fidelity
Requiem For A Dream
Wonder Boys
American Psycho
Black and White
Center Stage
Chicken Run
Chuck & Buck
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
Dr. T And The Women
Erin Brockovich
Final Destination
Hamlet (2000)
My Dog Skip
New Waterford Girl
Nurse Betty
Original Kings Of Comedy
Return To Me
Rugrats In Paris
Small Time Crooks
State And Main
Thirteen Days
A Time For Drunken Horses
Titan A.E.
Virgin Suicides, The
Way Of The Gun, The
You Can Count On Me
Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, The
Best In Show
Big Kahuna, The
Billy Elliot
Boiler Room
But I'm A Cheerleader
Dr. Seuss' How The Grinch Stole Christmas
Emperor's New Groove, The
Family Man, The
Finding Forrester
Gift, The
Gladiator (2000)
Kid, The
Love's Labour's Lost
Men of Honor
Nutty Professor II: The Klumps
O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Pay It Forward
Perfect Storm, The
Remember The Titans
Replacements, The
Saving Grace
Shanghai Noon
Space Cowboys
Tao of Steve, The
Time Code
28 Days
What Women Want
Where The Money Is
Autumn In New York
Bossa Nova
Hollow Man
Legend of Bagger Vance, The
Proof of Life
Rules of Engagement
Scream 3
Snow Day
All The Pretty Horses
Art of War, The
Big Momma's House
Here On Earth
Keeping The Faith
Lucky Numbers
Meet The Parents
Ninth Gate, The
Possible Worlds
Romeo Must Die
Shaft (2000)
Sixth Day, The
Up At The Villa
Vertical Limit
Bring It On
Dracula 2000
Get Carter (2000)
Lost Souls
Miss Congeniality
Mission: Impossible 2
Patriot, The
Pitch Black
Reindeer Games
Road Trip
Skulls, The
What Lies Beneath
Beach, The
Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2
Charlie's Angels
Coyote Ugly
Down To You
Dude, Where's My Car?
Eye of the Beholder
Gone In Sixty Seconds
Hanging Up
I Dreamed Of Africa
Next Best Thing, The
102 Dalmations
Passion Of Mind
Red Planet
Scary Movie
Watcher, The
Whatever It Takes
What Planet Are You From?
Where The Heart Is
Battlefield Earth
Bless The Child
Boys and Girls
Little Nicky
Mission To Mars
Ready To Rumble
2000 Film Batting Average: 2.53 out of 4.00
**** - 9 - 36
***1/2 - 25 - 87.5
*** - 37 - 111
**1/2 - 10 - 25
** - 17 - 34
*1/2 - 13 - 19.5
* - 21 - 21
0 - 6 - 0
* 132 - 334
ICQ: 16733922
FOX - Say Anything is more popular than you think

Edwin Pereyra

Senior HTF Member
Oct 26, 1998
*Updated: 07/27/01.*
Here's the upper echelon of my 2000 films. The rest is still a work in progress and my Top Ten will be finalized after all films in 2000 have been seen.

Films (out of four):
1. Traffic – Steven Sorderbergh successfully weaves four storylines in one ambitious motion picture. The result: a hard-hitting look at America's drug war problem without the usual cliches. Cameos of certain individuals including well-known public figures prominently featured in the media in their drug war fighting efforts further enhanced the film's credibility. By far, it is one of this year's most honest and thought provoking films with a strong performance by its ensemble cast.
2. Before Night Falls - With Julian Schnabel’s direction and camera work, he paints a big picture of the life of an artist with some mesmerizing passages and beautiful poetry. Javier Bardem gives a dynamic and electrifying performance as exiled Cuban writer Reinaldo Arenas. He showed a wide range of emotions and considers his performance very challenging. In depicting the harsh realities of human emotion under the clouds of repression and persecution, no other film is more honest this year than this one. It is a provocative and powerful film about human rights with a very strong central performance.
3. Requiem For A Dream - Comments to follow.
4. Wo Hu Zang Long (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) – An action-adventure movie masquerading as a dramatic romance film? "Hogwash!", you might say. While the film may be far from perfect, director Ang Lee has managed to westernize a traditional wuxia novel by taking certain liberties and, for the most part, with very good success. A film such as this exists only in one's imagination. And director Ang Lee has creatively transferred that imagination onto film along with beautiful photography, romantic undertones and fine acting by its two female leads, Michelle Yeoh and Zhang Ziyi.
5. Erin Brockovich – The film’s "already-been-seen-before" material is elevated by Julia Roberts' very strong performance and Steven Soderbergh’s capable direction. An actor that can single-handedly carry an entire movie on her own and still manages to captivate my attention despite its recurring material, deserves to be recognized.
6. Gladiator – Amidst all of its technical wizardry and pageantry, what really worked for me here is the film’s main theme of one man's love for his family told with brutal honesty and sincerity. How unfortunate that some people were easily distracted by the film’s CGI and battle scenes and missed this critical underlying theme. Still, take what others thought this film was about and add to it Hans Zimmer's stirring music, Ridley Scott delivered a rousing contemporary version of the "swords and sandals" epic films in the footsteps of Spartacus and Ben-Hur. Russell Crowe gave a superb performance as a man whose first and foremost allegiance is to his family then to his country.
7. O' Brother, Where Art Thou? - A funny, well-acted and beautifully photographed film. It contains this year's most delightful songs. The Coen brothers give us a film with colorful characters and vignettes that are almost dreamlike sequences in a whimsical look of rural Americana in the 1930's. Truly something out of the ordinary and George Clooney’s best performance to date.
8. Nurse Betty – One of this year's most original and unpredictable movies. Winner of the Best Screenplay award at the Cannes Film Festival, this is one of the very few movies this year in which I had a smile on my face after leaving the theater. Renee' Zellweger, under the direction of Neil Labute, delivers a very convincing performance as a traumatized woman who loses touch with reality and retreats into a dreamlike state. The film also has a fine supporting cast: Morgan Freeman, Chris Rock and Greg Kinnear.
9. Almost Famous – A perfect movie does not always need a happy ending. Cameron Crowe's coming of age film set in the 1970's makes an appearance in my Top Ten list even though I had faulted the film’s fantasy-like ending. A semi-autobiographical film should remain honest and true to its form instead of being self-indulgent and self-serving. (Even Crowe admits that part of the film’s ending was sugar coated). Nonetheless, the film's ensemble cast delivers a strong performance and overshadows the film's shortcoming.
10. Quills - Director Philip Kaufman brings a wicked sense of humor to a complex material that can be quite controversial and offensive, at times. The film explores both sides of the censorship issue and the unpredictable consequences of free expression. Is (extreme) art to be held responsible for people’s reactions or should there be a sense of responsibility attached to those who willingly accept this form of art? Sometimes, in order to appreciate true art, we have to see its extremes. The film also touches on how extreme behavior can bring out hypocrisy in those who claim to be moralists. The performances of Kate Winslet and Joaquin Phoenix are both outstanding but it is Geoffrey Rush’s electrifying performance as the Marquis that will be most remembered.
Films in alpha order:
• The Contender
• Fantasia 2000
• Thirteen Days
• Best In Show
• Billy Elliot
• Cast Away
• Chuck & Buck
• Finding Forrester
• Frequency
• The House Of Mirth
• Jesus' Son
• Panic
• Shadow of the Vampire
• State and Main
• Tigerland
• You Can Count On Me
• Dancer In The Dark - Lars von Trier’s bold film about the miscarriage of justice will definitely polarize audiences. I happen to side with those who were somewhat put off by it and for good reasons. While the style is certainly interesting, it is not without its faults. The film comes off as being highly manipulative, overly contrived, and most of all, blatantly dishonest. There are those who wouldn’t dare speak against the iconoclast von Trier and his films because, after all, they are considered “art” and how dare they? But not me. Those who are more forgiving will be able to accept the film and its flaws. Nevertheless, what I did enjoy about the film is Bjork’s remarkable performance as the blind Selma. At the very least, I recommend experiencing this one for yourself to arrive at your own conclusions.
• Pollock - What a big disappointment this was. By the time this autobiographical film was done, I didn’t know anything more about Jackson Pollock other than he was a manic-depressive and an alcoholic. And at the end of a long two-hour journey, we still know very little about the man himself, the artist in him. The film felt fragmented – a series of snippets into Pollock’s life that felt long in certain areas and very short on others. No movie should be this serious unless it has a very interesting story to tell. The manner in which Ed Harris handled the material, he certainly did not made it feel that way.
• Chocolat
• Wonder Boys
Still to see:
George Washington
[Edited last by Edwin Pereyra on July 27, 2001 at 04:52 PM]

Holden Pike

Stunt Coordinator
May 1, 1999
1) Lars von Trier's Dancer in the Dark
2) Curtis Hanson's Wonder Boys
3) E. Elias Merhige's Shadow of the Vampire
4) Guy Ritchie's Snatch
5) Soderbergh's Traffic
6) The Coen Bros.' O Brother, Where Art Thou?
7) Darren Aronfronsky's Requiem for a Dream
8) Branagh's Love's Labour's Lost
9) Jarmusch's Ghost Dog: the Way of the Samurai
10) Philip Kaufman's Quills
11) Mamet's State and Main
12) Soderbergh's Erin Brockovich
13) Chris Guest's Best in Show
14) Frear's High Fidelity
15) Stanley Tucci's Joe Gould's Secret
I also very much liked Bonnie Hunt's Return to Me, Keith Gordon's Waking the Dead, Eastwood's Space Cowboys, Lonergan's You Can Count on Me, LaBute's Nurse Betty, Crowe's Almost Famous, Bruno Barreto's Bossa Nova, and Alison Maclean's Jesus' Son.
*Ed Harris' Pollack I haven't caught up with yet, but am still looking forward to it.
For everybody's bitchin' about what a horrible or weak year the cinematic fare of 2000 was, I found plenty of great stuff out there.
UPDATED 1/19/01

Seth Paxton

Senior HTF Member
Nov 5, 1998
Edwin, I know many lists might not be done, but go ahead and put what you got so far. Then mention any films you think you might need to see to complete your list.
Then as you see them you can post that you saw it and then go back up to your list, edit it, and perhaps put a date stamp for it's last update. Mine is clearly a work in progress as well.
Like I will see Traffic tonight and at least take it off my "to see list" and if it makes my top 10 I will put it in where it needs to go. I also put down some films that were there but got bumped which is basically Jason's honorable mention idea. If you need to fill out your list with Battlefield Earth because you only saw 10 films so far, ok, we understand.

Jason, actually I don't mind discussion but I would like to see the lists come up first, which is why I think Edwin should go ahead and stick one on for now. I would say that things like "Your list sucks" or "That film was terrible" are unwanted here. Maybe just comments on why a film did/didn't make our lists without trashing somebody else's list.
Holden - I still think it's a weak year because this year does not have a decent money frontrunner or set of front runners. It was a standard good year for small film, but terribly weak on the big film front. The only film to really generate buzz among audiances has been CTHD, and that's as much to being inaccessible as it being good IMHO.
What film from this year is changing how we view films or is destined to be a real reference in the future? We don't have that Usual Suspects, Titanic, Forrest Gump, SPR from year's past to go with all these great smaller films. Only Cast Away and Gladiator come close. Soderbergh's Erin B. was pretty popular, but his style is still more alternative than most mainstream. If anything, 2000 is his coming out party (finally) and possibly the public's newfound respect for foreign/subtitled film thanks to CTHD.
If only Patriot, Perfect Storm or something like that could have been of the quality of something like YCCoM.

Stephen R

Stunt Coordinator
Mar 28, 2000
Updated March 20th, 2001: I think the list is in its final stages now. Due to a hectic schedule, I've managed to miss House of Mirth, Pollock, and Yi-Yi, among others, all of which have come, and unfortunately gone, in my area within the last couple months.
No films added for this update, but I did rehaul the list a bit, and there quite a number of changes, the most notable being Dancer in the Dark, which rocketed all the way up from 8th place to 2nd place after subsequent viewings of the DVD. Saw this movie way back in September, and had nearly forgotten how incredible it is. Cast Away moved up a bit, as did O Brother, Where Art Thou?; Crouching Tiger moved down a bit, as did Shadow of the Vampire.
This'll probably be one of the last updates to my 2000 list, as 2001 is already heavily underway. It's been fun, guys, and I hope to do many more in the years to come here on HTF.
01. Requiem for a Dream
02. Dancer in the Dark
03. Gladiator
04. Traffic
05. You Can Count on Me
06. Cast Away
07. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
08. Almost Famous
09. O Brother, Where Art Thou?
10. Shadow of the Vampire
Runners Up: Wonder Boys, Quills, Erin Brockovich, Ratcatcher, Before Night Falls, Smiling Fish and Goat on Fire, and George Washington.

Ugo Scarlata

Stunt Coordinator
Sep 1, 2000
(Updated 1/21/01)

With films like these, I can't say it has been a bad year for movies...
  1. http://us.imdb.com/Title?0120263 Titus, Joe Gould's Secret, Idioterne (The Idiots), Mifune, Rang-e Khoda (The Color of Paradise), Return to Me, The Big Kahuna, Dancer in the Dark, Nurse Betty, In the Mood for Love, Cast Away.

    Overrated films:
    Almost Famous, Requiem for a Dream, Gladiator, Erin Brockovich, Traffic, American Psycho, Billy Elliot, Chocolat, La Veuve de St. Pierre (The Widow of St. Pierre)

    [ Link Removed

Holden Pike

Stunt Coordinator
May 1, 1999
Seth - the big-budget mainstream fare is just about always weak, as far as I'm concerned. It's only shocking when one of those behemoths with a big-name movie star is any good, and never news that they mostly disappoint.
And how in the heck is The Usual Suspects in the same boat as Titanic or Forrest Gump? It was a smaller lower-profile movie with no 'movie star' talent attached and relatively unknown director and writer. It only generated buzz because it was good, not because it was mainstream. And for all that fuss, it only made about $25-million theatrically in the U.S., which was impressive given the $6-million budget, but certainly didn't challenge the likes of Apollo 13.
Get out of the multiplexes, y'all! There are so many great films out there, you just have to know where to look.

Brian Ford

Stunt Coordinator
Jun 16, 1999
Good thing I searched to see if this thread was made yet, I was about to create my own!
10. U-571
9. Frequency
8. Cast Away
7. Traffic
6. X-men
5. Road Trip
4. The Emperor's New Groove
3. Way Of The Gun
2. Unbreakable
1. Gladiator
Honorable Mentions: Titan A.E., Almost Famous, The Beach, Finding Forrester, Shanghai Noon, Fantasia 2000 (IMAX), The Patriot, The Cell, Final Destination, Pitch Black.
Need to see: Remember The Titans, Requiem For A Dream, Cecil B. Demented, Shadow Of The Vampire...
Quite a few a still really need to see, good chance many of those will make it on to the list.

Mark Cappelletty

Senior HTF Member
Jun 6, 1999
Here you go:
1.) Requiem For a Dream
2.) Croupier
3.) High Fidelity
4.) Unbreakable
5.) Jesus' Son
6.) Shadow of the Vampire
7.) Gladiator
8.) Nurse Betty
9.) The Virgin Suicides
10.) Hamlet
With Quills and The Filth and The Fury in as honorable mentions. Liked Almost Famous and Castaway but didn't think they were that great. I think that Requiem For a Dream is the best American film in a long, long time-- and the best film I've seen since Breaking the Waves.
Still haven't seen O Brother Where Art Thou, Traffic, Thirteen Days (plan to see all three w/in the next week or so), Wonder Boys, Crouching Tiger..., The Claim, The Contender (though I could have watched a chopped up version of it on the plane back to LA over Xmas), You Can Count on Me, Girl on the Bridge, Sunshine, House of Mirth, or Dude Where's My Car?
As a writer, I have to take umbrage at your directoralization of your list. The director may call the shots on the set, but it took a writer (who is sometimes the director) to pen the words and come up with the concept. Just my two cents.

Edwin Pereyra

Senior HTF Member
Oct 26, 1998
Get out of the multiplexes, y'all! There are so many great films out there, you just have to know where to look.
I agree. The only art house in my area closed earlier this year due to lack of support. It is now very hard for us art house lovers to get films that would not normally go into wide release and that's why I haven't seen a few of the earlier limited release films.
I still would like to wait before posting my personal list. Thanks.

Seth Paxton

Senior HTF Member
Nov 5, 1998
(edit add) Edwin, we will let you fill all 10 place with Gladiator.
Although it appears that Traffic might be taking one of those spots at least. :) (edit end)
Fair enough Holden, but I was mentioning US as an example of a film that captured film lovers facination even though it wasn't a big money film. Much like Blair Witch (although it did some pretty strong business). 2000 has really lacked in either big effort films of quality or a smaller film that explodes onto the landscape, unless CTHD is going to fill that mark (and not until well into 2001).
US may not have been a big money film, but it's story/images were so strong that they get used even in something like Scary Movie. It's things like that or "life is like a box of..." or "Houston we have a..." that this year is missing, unless you count "They're called boobs, Ed." :)
And my real reason for checking back here is that TRAFFIC completely ruled!! I loved every bit of it. SS is really honing his craft. I feel like we see him develop himself with each movie, learning to refine older techniques while integrating new ones. Plus, his ability to read a scene and apply the appropriate technique to it is uncanny. Anyway, I guess these comments should go in the ***Traffic thread.
It goes to number 1 on my list with a bullet.

Seth Paxton

Senior HTF Member
Nov 5, 1998
BTW, Edwin and Holden, the main new release arthouse in Indy (Castleton Arts) had Requiem which I saw, then it brought in Chocolat, Quills, and still had You Can Count on Me. I went to that theater and saw all of those films already. I did miss Billy Elliot as I didn't realize that they were getting ready to pull it.
I haven't seen 4 films in any other theater in town this year (I keep getting pissed at one due to quality and don't go back :) ).
So I'm out of the megaplexes and supporting the arthouses. But while studios produce lots of dreck, being big is not an automatic disqualifier of quality. I happen to think Titanic deserved it's Oscar. And I thought Apollo 13 was excellent. And Shakespeare in Love. Etc, etc. Casablanca or Gone With the Wind are examples of crowd pleasing gems with big stars and studio backing.
And no, small/indy films and big/studio films are not the same, either in approach, abilities, restraits, or freedoms. The require different methods of filmmaking on all accounts, what and how you can do things. The indy people kept up their end this year, but the studios blew it, but not for lack of throwing tons of money and stars at us. I agree, Holden, that the studio system throws up tons of crap, but usually in that huge mass a few big, quality films make it through to much acclaim.
Of course now I'm ruining my own thread with slightly off-topic stuff.

Jesse Leonard

Second Unit
Jun 8, 2000
  1. American Psycho
  2. Traffic
  3. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
  4. Erin Brockovich
  5. Requiem for a Dream
  6. Center Stage
  7. Frequency
  8. Almost Famous
  9. Gone in 60 Seconds
  10. Meet the Parents[/list=a]

    Link Removed
    "I carried a watermelon."

Holden Pike

Stunt Coordinator
May 1, 1999
Mark C. - I'm a writer too, and as much as I'd like to list every contributor to those wonderful films, in the spirit of brevity I applied 'authorship' to the directors only. But don't blame me for Auteurism, blame Truffaut and the rest of those stinkin' Frenchmen!
And for the record, six of my top ten were helmed by writer/directors who either wrote, co-wrote, or adapted the screenplays (von Trier, The Coen Bros., Aronofsky, Branagh, Jarmusch, and Mamet).
But yes indeed, the screenwriters (and for that matter, the authors of the source material, where applicable) are crucial to the success of virtually any great film, including those I listed.*
*this disclaimer brought to you by the WGA East & West (a unified front, for once).
For a complete list of DPs, ADs, editors, ADR supervisors, PAs, best boys, dolly gripers, composers, sound re-recording mixers, publicists, effects supervisors, craft service providers, etc. who toiled on the films on my list, please consult the press kits for each film or actually stay around for all the credits and pay attention. And for a complete list of associate producers, it can be furnished upon request (thanks, Mr. Mamet).
"And now, on with the opera! Let there be dancing in the streets, drinking in the saloons, and necking in the parlor. Play, Don...."

Ugo Scarlata

Stunt Coordinator
Sep 1, 2000
And no, small/indy films and big/studio films are not the same, either in approach, abilities, restraits, or freedoms. The require different methods of filmmaking on all accounts, what and how you can do things.
Small and big films do not differ in any of those aspects. Those differences would apply to any film, regardless of its budget. Every single film has its own freedoms and limitations, and every film should be (and is) approached differently.
Many people seem to believe that because a film is classified as small their enjoyment might be somehow diminished; that small films are less entertaining because less money was spent on them. And we're not talking about "indy" films here either!
The vast majority of the small films mentioned in this thread are not independent films, they are simply studio releases with relatively small budgets. By my definition, an independent film would be the #1 on http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/Forum9/HTML/005503.html#8
Independent films do not get staggered releases in NY and LA, followed by limited runs, followed by slightly wider runs; those are the strategies of major studios! Independent films do not make it to theaters at all. And they certainly do not get Academy Awards nominations, since such nominations require heavy marketing by studios wishing to get their films recognized, in order to generate further profits.
Art houses were supposed to be outlets for independent, or experimental, or foreign films. However, the trend lately has shifted toward using art houses mostly as outlets for these smaller studio films; all because the mainstream moviegoers mistakenly assume that there are significant differences between big and small films, other than just the budget!
Things have gotten so absurd lately that even a major film (by any definition) such as Wonder Boys was pushed away from the masses, into these so-called "art houses"!
Anyway, sorry for going on and on with my incoherent rants. But since this thread is in the Movies forum instead of the Polls forum, where a http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/Forum25/HTML/000841.html

Patrick Sun

Senior HTF Member
Jun 30, 1999
My list is still a work in progress, but basically it's done.
1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
1. Requiem for a Dream
3. You Can Count On Me
4. Almost Famous
5. Unbreakable
6. Billy Elliot
7. Thirteen Days
8. Quills
9. Wonder Boys
10. Finding Forrester
Possible other contenders:
Men Of Honor
Remember The Titans
High Fidelity
Nurse Betty
Erin Brockovich
Cast Away
The Contender
Chicken Run
The Gift
Haven't seen:
Shadow of the Vampire
Dancer In The Dark
House of Mirth
(I only think I'll be seeing 5 on the "haven't seen" by the end of January.) I'll try to update the list when I'm closer to my Top 10 (though it's really tough!)
(Edited 1-13-01 to update list)
(Edited 1-14-01 to update list)
(Edited 1-20-01 to update list)
(Edited 2-10-01 to update list)
PatCave ; HT Pix ; Gear ; Sunosub I + III ; DVDs ; Link Removed

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