Thursday, December 29, 2016

The 90s Generation

Jesse Walker now has his top ten movie list from 1996.  Let's get right to it:

1.  Fargo
2.  Flirting With Disaster
3.  Trainspotting
4.  The Delta
5.  Chris Rock: Bring The Pain
6.  Microcosmos
7.  Conspirators Of Pleasure
8.  I Shot Andy Warhol
9.  Kingpin
10.Three Lives And Only One Death

My main problem with this list is Fargo--I blow hot and cold on the Coen Brothers, and this one doesn't quite do it for me.  When I insisted their next film, The Big Lebowski, would hold up better, I was met with something approaching derision. (My biggest problem with the film is the character of Marge Gunderson, for which--naturally--Frances McDormand won an Oscar.  I've enjoyed the TV version a lot more.)

The rest of the list is pretty impressive.  Flirting With Disaster is one of the best comedies of the decade. Kingpin is the best Farrelly Brothers comedy that didn't make money. Microcosmos is one of the coolest documentaries of the decade (though I don't like the trick they play on the dung beetle).  Conspirators Of Pleasure may be Svankmajer's best feature (admittedly, he mostly makes shorts).

I Shot Andy Warhol was good, though I don't think top ten good.  Same for Trainspotting.  The Chris Rock thing is a monumental performance, but, as an HBO comedy special, shouldn't be on the list.  I haven't seen The Delta or Three Lives And Only One Death.

Here are Jesse's honorable mentions:

11. Personal Belongings
12. Schizopolis
13. Breaking The Waves
14. Gabbeh
15. Paradise Lost
16. Citizen Ruth
17. When We Were Kings
18. Capitaine Conan
19. Big Night
20. Private Confessions

Schizopolis and Breaking The Waves would make my top ten.  Citizen Ruth, When We Were Kings and Big Night might make my top twenty.  Paradise Lost is a decent documentary.

I haven't seen 11, 14, 18 or 20.

A lot of double directors in the top twenty.

Other films that would have made my top ten:


Bottle Rocket

Secrets & Lies


Other films I like:

Beavis And Butt-Head Do America, The Birdcage, Bound, Broken Arrow, The Daytrippers, From Dusk Till Dawn, Grace Of My Heart, Hard Eight, Kids In The Hall: Brain Candy, The Last Big Thing, The Line King: The Al Hirschfeld Story, Lone Star, The Long Kiss Goodnight, Mother (though weak for Albert Brooks), Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie, Police Story 4, Shall We Dance?, Sling Blade, That Thing You Do!, Tin Cup (starts top ten but peters out), Trees Lounge, Walking And Talking

Other films of note:

101 Dalmations, August,  Beautiful Girls, Bio-Dome, Blood And Wine, Bogus, Bordello Of Blood, Bulletproof, The Cable Guy, Carpool, Carried Away, Chain Reaction, City Hall, Courage Under Fire, The Craft, Crash (Cronenberg), Daylight, Diabolique, Don't Be A Menace To South Central While Drinking Your Juice In The Hood, Down Periscope, Dragonheart, Ed, The English Patient (Oscar winner), Emma, Eraser, Escape From L.A., The Evening Star, Everyone Says I Love You, Evita, Executive Decision, Extreme Measures, Eye For An Eye, Faithful, The Fan, Fear, Feeling Minnesota, First Kid, The First Wives Club, Fly Away Home, Freeway, The Frighteners, Get On The Bus, Getting Away With Murder, The Ghost And The Darkness, Ghosts Of Mississippi, The Glimmer Man, The Grass Harp, Hamlet, Happy Gilmore,
Harriet The Spy, Head Above Water, High School High, The Hunchback Of Notre Dame, I'm Not Rappaport, If Lucy Fell, In Love And War, Independence Day, Indian Summer, Infinity, Irma Vep, Jack, Jane Eyre, Jerry Maguire, Joes Apartment, Johns, The Juror, Kansas City, Last Dance, Last Man Standing, Letters From Home, Mad Dog Time, Manny & Lo, Mars Attacks!, Marvin's Room, Mary Reilly, Matilda, Maximum Risk, Michael, Michael Collins, The Mirror Has Two Faces, Mission: Impossible, Mother Night, Mrs. Winterbourne, Mulholland Falls, Multiplicity, My Fellow Americans, North Star, The Nutty Professor, One Fine Day, The People Vs. Larry Flynt, A Perfect Candidate, The Phantom, Phenomenon, The Portrait Of A Lady, The Preacher's Wife, Primal Fear, Ransom, Ridicule, The Rock, Scream, The Secret Agent, Set It Off, Sgt. Bilko, She's The One, Sleepers, Space Jam, Space Truckers, The Spitfire Grill, Star Trek: First Contact (the best film this crew made), Stealing Beauty, Striptease, The Stupids, The Substance Of Fire, SubUrbia, Temptress Moon, Thieves, A Thin Line Between Love And Hate, Thinner, A Time To Kill, To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday, Tremors 2: Aftershocks, The Trigger Effect, The Truth About Cats & Dogs, Twister, Two If By Sea, Unforgettable, Up Close And Personal, White Squall, The Whole Wide World, The Winner


Anonymous Anonymous said...

With all your stuff about the first amendment, I'm surprised you don't like The People Versus Larry Flynt more.

1:21 PM, December 29, 2016  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well political viewpoint does not dictate how good a film will be. A film with a very objectionable message could be a very good film. Trumph of the Will for example (or people say- I just saw it referenced in newsreels as a tremendous piece of propaganda) or Dirty Harry I guess

1:31 PM, December 29, 2016  
Blogger Jesse said...

People thought I was weird for loving THE BIG LEBOWSKI when it first came out too. But now everyone seems to have come around.

1:57 PM, December 29, 2016  
Anonymous Denver Guy said...

Has Jesse's list for 1996 changed since the last time he made this list (presumably 2006)?

9:37 AM, December 30, 2016  
Blogger Jesse said...

Yeah, I've revised the lists as I've seen new movies, and as I've noticed that some stuck with me more than I originally anticipated, and as I've rewatched pictures & liked them more or less than before, and sometimes when I've discovered that I had a film's release date wrong.

11:15 AM, December 30, 2016  
Blogger Bream Halibut said...

My reaction to The Big Lebowski seems to be both of yours in inverse. I loved it when it came out and haven't found it nearly as fun since then. Fargo is good, and probably in my top ten, but 1996 was kind of a weak year. Microcosm would also be on there. I liked Trainspotting but haven't seen it since the 90s. I want to see the Chris Rock special.

Not a big Svankmajer fan but Conspirators of Pleasure is interesting in that his style seems completely appropriate to the exploration of fetishes. Repetitious, ritualistic obsession with details that just seem boring and absurd to anyone who doesn't have the same fetish. I'm not sure if he was being self-aware or if I was just projecting.

Half of the times I've seen Schizopolis I think it's funny and the other half it's just clever, so it would either be low top-ten or honorable mention depending on the day.

Citizen Ruth I need to see again but I know I liked it.

Breaking the Waves is my second favorite Von Trier (after Europa) and those are the only two I like at all. Wouldn't be top ten, maybe an honorable mention.

Paradise Lost would make my list but somewhere in the bottom five.

96 is one of the few years of the 90s where I have trouble thinking of ten movies that I really like (let alone love), and it's sandwiched between two great years (The Blade, Fallen Angels, Fast, Cheap & Out of Control, Men With Guns, The Crossing Guard, Toy Story, Memories, Too Many Ways to Be No.1, and Forgotten Silver to name just a few favorites from 95 and 97).

My favorites are Lone Star, Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood and Comrades: Almost a Love Story. I also liked Emma (though Clueless is better. 1995 strikes again...) and Hamlet. Honorable mentions would include Forbidden City Cop, Police Story 4, The Stunt Woman, Death and the Compass, The Stunt Woman and The Frighteners.

There was nothing I really hated, but I found Irma Vep pretty boring.

11:34 AM, January 03, 2017  

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