Col Needham's Top 30 Movies from the Last 30 Yearsby Col Needham | last updated - 1 week ago
I am the Founder and CEO of IMDb and in honour of our 30th anniversary here are my favourite movies from 1990 to 2019. One movie per year and in chronological order.
This is a companion list to my Top 30 International Movies from the Last 30 Years list and my Top 30 Hidden Gem Movies from the Last 30 Years list.
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1. The Hunt for Red October (1990)
PG | 135 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
In November 1984, the Soviet Union's best submarine Captain in their newest sub violates orders and heads for the U.S. Is he trying to defect or to start a war?
Votes: 176,294 | Gross: $122.01M
2. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
R | 118 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
A young F.B.I. cadet must receive the help of an incarcerated and manipulative cannibal killer to help catch another serial killer, a madman who skins his victims.
Votes: 1,244,686 | Gross: $130.74M
3. Basic Instinct (1992)
R | 127 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
A violent police detective investigates a brutal murder that might involve a manipulative and seductive novelist.
Votes: 172,924 | Gross: $117.73M
4. Jurassic Park (1993)
PG-13 | 127 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
A pragmatic paleontologist visiting an almost complete theme park is tasked with protecting a couple of kids after a power failure causes the park's cloned dinosaurs to run loose.
Votes: 852,294 | Gross: $402.45M
5. Pulp Fiction (1994)
R | 154 min | Crime, Drama
The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster and his wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.
Votes: 1,792,776 | Gross: $107.93M
6. Se7en (1995)
R | 127 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Two detectives, a rookie and a veteran, hunt a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins as his motives.
Votes: 1,414,055 | Gross: $100.13M
7. Bound (1996)
R | 109 min | Crime, Romance, Thriller
Tough ex-con Corky and her lover Violet concoct a scheme to steal millions of stashed mob money and pin the blame on Violet's crooked boyfriend Caesar.
Votes: 49,899 | Gross: $3.80M
8. Contact (1997)
PG | 150 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
Dr. Ellie Arroway, after years of searching, finds conclusive radio proof of extraterrestrial intelligence, sending plans for a mysterious machine.
Votes: 250,542 | Gross: $100.92M
9. Saving Private Ryan (1998)
R | 169 min | Drama, War
Following the Normandy Landings, a group of U.S. soldiers go behind enemy lines to retrieve a paratrooper whose brothers have been killed in action.
Votes: 1,212,680 | Gross: $216.54M
10. Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
R | 159 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
A New York City doctor embarks on a harrowing, night-long odyssey of sexual and moral discovery after his wife reveals a painful secret to him.
Votes: 297,113 | Gross: $55.69M
11. Requiem for a Dream (2000)
R | 102 min | Drama
The drug-induced utopias of four Coney Island people are shattered when their addictions run deep.
Votes: 753,670 | Gross: $3.64M
12. Moulin Rouge! (2001)
PG-13 | 127 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
A poet falls for a beautiful courtesan whom a jealous duke covets.
Votes: 263,956 | Gross: $57.39M
13. Minority Report (2002)
PG-13 | 145 min | Action, Crime, Mystery
In a future where a special police unit is able to arrest murderers before they commit their crimes, an officer from that unit is himself accused of a future murder.
Votes: 501,472 | Gross: $132.07M
PG-13 | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Blacksmith Will Turner teams up with eccentric pirate "Captain" Jack Sparrow to save his love, the governor's daughter, from Jack's former pirate allies, who are now undead.
Votes: 1,004,903 | Gross: $305.41M
15. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
PG | 142 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy
Harry Potter, Ron and Hermione return to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for their third year of study, where they delve into the mystery surrounding an escaped prisoner who poses a dangerous threat to the young wizard.
Votes: 538,296 | Gross: $249.36M
16. Flightplan (2005)
PG-13 | 98 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
A bereaved woman and her daughter are flying home from Berlin to America. At 30,000 feet, the child vanishes, and nobody will admit she was ever on the plane.
Votes: 150,840 | Gross: $89.71M
17. The Prestige (2006)
PG-13 | 130 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
After a tragic accident, two stage magicians engage in a battle to create the ultimate illusion while sacrificing everything they have to outwit each other.
Votes: 1,165,296 | Gross: $53.09M
18. Atonement (2007)
R | 123 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance
Thirteen-year-old fledgling writer Briony Tallis irrevocably changes the course of several lives when she accuses her older sister's lover of a crime he did not commit.
Votes: 246,301 | Gross: $50.93M
19. Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
R | 120 min | Drama, Romance
A Mumbai teenager reflects on his life after being accused of cheating on the Indian version of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?".
Votes: 789,443 | Gross: $141.32M
20. Avatar (2009)
PG-13 | 162 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
A paraplegic Marine dispatched to the moon Pandora on a unique mission becomes torn between following his orders and protecting the world he feels is his home.
Votes: 1,105,821 | Gross: $760.51M
21. Inception (2010)
PG-13 | 148 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
A thief who steals corporate secrets through the use of dream-sharing technology is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a C.E.O.
Votes: 2,022,454 | Gross: $292.58M
22. The Descendants (2011)
R | 115 min | Comedy, Drama
A land baron tries to reconnect with his two daughters after his wife is seriously injured in a boating accident.
Votes: 230,857 | Gross: $82.58M
23. Prometheus (I) (2012)
R | 124 min | Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi
Following clues to the origin of mankind, a team finds a structure on a distant moon, but they soon realize they are not alone.
Votes: 563,055 | Gross: $126.48M
24. Gravity (2013)
PG-13 | 91 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller
Two astronauts work together to survive after an accident leaves them stranded in space.
Votes: 759,304 | Gross: $274.09M
25. Interstellar (2014)
PG-13 | 169 min | Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi
A team of explorers travel through a wormhole in space in an attempt to ensure humanity's survival.
Votes: 1,468,264 | Gross: $188.02M
26. True Story (I) (2015)
R | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
When disgraced New York Times reporter Michael Finkel meets accused killer Christian Longo - who has taken on Finkel's identity - his investigation morphs into a game of cat-and-mouse.
Votes: 62,405 | Gross: $4.72M
27. A Monster Calls (2016)
PG-13 | 108 min | Adventure, Drama, Family
A boy seeks the help of a tree monster to cope with his single mother's terminal illness.
Votes: 79,289 | Gross: $3.73M
28. The Shape of Water (2017)
R | 123 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
At a top secret research facility in the 1960s, a lonely janitor forms a unique relationship with an amphibious creature that is being held in captivity.
Votes: 360,968 | Gross: $63.86M
29. Wild Rose (2018)
R | 101 min | Comedy, Drama, Music
A troubled young Glaswegian woman dreams of becoming a Nashville country star.
Votes: 9,608 | Gross: $1.64M
30. Once Upon a Time... In Hollywood (2019)
R | 161 min | Comedy, Drama
A faded television actor and his stunt double strive to achieve fame and success in the final years of Hollywood's Golden Age in 1969 Los Angeles.
Votes: 521,353 | Gross: $142.50M