30 Most Unique Films of 30 Years

by themissingpatient | created - 19 May 2012 | updated - 20 May 2012 | Public

Favorite films that have been released in my lifetime.

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1. Mulholland Dr. (2001)

R | 147 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
83 Metascore

After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, Justin Theroux, Jeanne Bates

Votes: 270,428 | Gross: $7.22M

2. Twelve Monkeys (1995)

R | 129 min | Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
74 Metascore

In a future world devastated by disease, a convict is sent back in time to gather information about the man-made virus that wiped out most of the human population on the planet.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe, Brad Pitt, Joseph Melito

Votes: 511,471 | Gross: $57.14M

3. 21 Grams (2003)

R | 124 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
70 Metascore

A freak accident brings together a critically ill mathematician, a grieving mother, and a born-again ex-con.

Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu | Stars: Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro, Naomi Watts, Danny Huston

Votes: 203,553 | Gross: $16.25M

4. Memento (2000)

R | 113 min | Mystery, Thriller

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
80 Metascore

A man juggles searching for his wife's murderer and keeping his short-term memory loss from being an obstacle.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, Mark Boone Junior

Votes: 954,424 | Gross: $25.54M

5. Sin City (2005)

R | 124 min | Crime, Thriller

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
74 Metascore

A film that explores the dark and miserable town, Basin City, and tells the story of three different people, all caught up in violent corruption.

Directors: Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Mickey Rourke, Clive Owen, Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba

Votes: 695,951 | Gross: $74.10M

6. The Fountain (2006)

PG-13 | 96 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
51 Metascore

As a modern-day scientist, Tommy is struggling with mortality, desperately searching for the medical breakthrough that will save the life of his cancer-stricken wife, Izzi.

Director: Darren Aronofsky | Stars: Hugh Jackman, Rachel Weisz, Sean Patrick Thomas, Ellen Burstyn

Votes: 207,223 | Gross: $10.14M

7. Fight Club (1999)

R | 139 min | Drama

8.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
66 Metascore

An insomniac office worker, looking for a way to change his life, crosses paths with a devil-may-care soapmaker, forming an underground fight club that evolves into something much, much more.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Meat Loaf, Zach Grenier

Votes: 1,534,362 | Gross: $37.03M

8. 28 Days Later... (2002)

R | 113 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
73 Metascore

Four weeks after a mysterious, incurable virus spreads throughout the UK, a handful of survivors try to find sanctuary.

Director: Danny Boyle | Stars: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston, Alex Palmer

Votes: 326,628 | Gross: $45.06M

9. Inglourious Basterds (2009)

R | 153 min | Adventure, Drama, War

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
69 Metascore

In Nazi-occupied France during World War II, a plan to assassinate Nazi leaders by a group of Jewish U.S. soldiers coincides with a theatre owner's vengeful plans for the same.

Directors: Quentin Tarantino, Eli Roth | Stars: Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger, Eli Roth, Mélanie Laurent

Votes: 1,019,665 | Gross: $120.54M

10. The Shining (1980)

R | 146 min | Drama, Horror

8.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
63 Metascore

A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd, Scatman Crothers

Votes: 702,270 | Gross: $44.02M

11. No Country for Old Men (2007)

R | 122 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
91 Metascore

Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon a drug deal gone wrong and more than two million dollars in cash near the Rio Grande.

Directors: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen | Stars: Tommy Lee Jones, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Woody Harrelson

Votes: 699,706 | Gross: $74.28M

12. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004)

R | 119 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

7.3
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62 Metascore

With a plan to exact revenge on a mythical shark that killed his partner, oceanographer Steve Zissou rallies a crew that includes his estranged wife, a journalist, and a man who may or may not be his son.

Director: Wes Anderson | Stars: Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Anjelica Huston, Cate Blanchett

Votes: 154,954 | Gross: $24.01M

13. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

R | 118 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

7.7
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41 Metascore

An oddball journalist and his psychopathic lawyer travel to Las Vegas for a series of psychedelic escapades.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Johnny Depp, Benicio Del Toro, Tobey Maguire, Michael Lee Gogin

Votes: 230,221 | Gross: $10.68M

14. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

R | 108 min | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
89 Metascore

When their relationship turns sour, a young couple undergoes a medical procedure to have each other erased from their memories.

Director: Michel Gondry | Stars: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Tom Wilkinson, Gerry Robert Byrne

Votes: 756,591 | Gross: $34.40M

15. There Will Be Blood (2007)

R | 158 min | Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
93 Metascore

A story of family, religion, hatred, oil and madness, focusing on a turn-of-the-century prospector in the early days of the business.

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson | Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Paul Dano, Ciarán Hinds, Martin Stringer

Votes: 424,964 | Gross: $40.22M

16. Requiem for a Dream (2000)

R | 102 min | Drama

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
68 Metascore

The drug-induced utopias of four Coney Island people are shattered when their addictions run deep.

Director: Darren Aronofsky | Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly, Marlon Wayans

Votes: 648,021 | Gross: $3.64M

17. Lost Highway (1997)

R | 134 min | Mystery, Thriller

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
52 Metascore

After a bizarre encounter at a party, a jazz saxophonist is framed for the murder of his wife and sent to prison, where he inexplicably morphs into a young mechanic and begins leading a new life.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, John Roselius, Louis Eppolito

Votes: 110,169 | Gross: $3.80M

18. Elephant (2003)

R | 81 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
70 Metascore

Several ordinary high school students go through their daily routine as two others prepare for something more malevolent.

Director: Gus Van Sant | Stars: Elias McConnell, Alex Frost, Eric Deulen, John Robinson

Votes: 76,370 | Gross: $1.23M

19. Antichrist (2009)

Not Rated | 108 min | Drama, Horror

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
49 Metascore

A grieving couple retreat to their cabin in the woods, hoping to repair their broken hearts and troubled marriage. But nature takes its course and things go from bad to worse.

Director: Lars von Trier | Stars: Willem Dafoe, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Storm Acheche Sahlstrøm

Votes: 98,694 | Gross: $0.40M

20. Inland Empire (2006)

R | 180 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
72 Metascore

As an actress starts to adopt the persona of her character in a film, her world starts to become nightmarish and surreal.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Laura Dern, Jeremy Irons, Justin Theroux, Karolina Gruszka

Votes: 46,602 | Gross: $0.75M

21. Ghostbusters (1984)

PG | 105 min | Action, Comedy, Fantasy

7.8
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71 Metascore

Three former parapsychology professors set up shop as a unique ghost removal service.

Director: Ivan Reitman | Stars: Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Sigourney Weaver, Harold Ramis

Votes: 302,458 | Gross: $238.63M

22. The Meaning of Life (1983)

R | 107 min | Comedy, Musical

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The comedy team takes a look at life in all its stages in their own uniquely silly way.

Directors: Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam | Stars: John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones

Votes: 96,503 | Gross: $14.93M

23. Planet Terror (2007)

Not Rated | 105 min | Action, Comedy, Horror

7.1
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After an experimental bio-weapon is released, turning thousands into zombie-like creatures, it's up to a rag-tag group of survivors to stop the infected and those behind its release.

Director: Robert Rodriguez | Stars: Rose McGowan, Freddy Rodríguez, Josh Brolin, Marley Shelton

Votes: 180,172

24. Drag Me to Hell (2009)

PG-13 | 99 min | Horror, Thriller

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
83 Metascore

A loan officer who evicts an old woman from her home finds herself the recipient of a supernatural curse. Desperate, she turns to a seer to try and save her soul, while evil forces work to push her to a breaking point.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Alison Lohman, Justin Long, Ruth Livier, Lorna Raver

Votes: 169,070 | Gross: $42.10M

25. The Big Lebowski (1998)

R | 117 min | Comedy, Crime

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
69 Metascore

"The Dude" Lebowski, mistaken for a millionaire Lebowski, seeks restitution for his ruined rug and enlists his bowling buddies to help get it.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi

Votes: 608,835 | Gross: $17.50M

26. Donnie Darko (2001)

R | 113 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
88 Metascore

A troubled teenager is plagued by visions of a man in a large rabbit suit who manipulates him to commit a series of crimes, after he narrowly escapes a bizarre accident.

Director: Richard Kelly | Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne

Votes: 651,632 | Gross: $0.19M

27. Fargo (1996)

R | 98 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
85 Metascore

Jerry Lundegaard's inept crime falls apart due to his and his henchmen's bungling and the persistent police work of the quite pregnant Marge Gunderson.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare

Votes: 515,411 | Gross: $24.61M

28. Evil Dead II (1987)

R | 84 min | Comedy, Horror

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
69 Metascore

The lone survivor of an onslaught of flesh-possessing spirits holes up in a cabin with a group of strangers while the demons continue their attack.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Bruce Campbell, Sarah Berry, Dan Hicks, Kassie Wesley DePaiva

Votes: 126,376 | Gross: $5.92M

29. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

R | 91 min | Horror

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
78 Metascore

Several people are hunted by a cruel serial killer who kills his victims in their dreams. While the survivors are trying to find the reason for being chosen, the murderer won't lose any chance to kill them as soon as they fall asleep.

Director: Wes Craven | Stars: Heather Langenkamp, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund, John Saxon

Votes: 169,830 | Gross: $25.50M

30. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

PG | 115 min | Action, Adventure

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
85 Metascore

Archaeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the U.S. government to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman, John Rhys-Davies

Votes: 742,878 | Gross: $248.16M