Top 30 Films of the Noughties

by bigplatts | created - 24 Mar 2012 | updated - 24 Mar 2012 | Public

My 30 favorite films from 2000-2009.

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1. The Dark Knight (2008)

PG-13 | 152 min | Action, Crime, Drama

82 Metascore

When the menace known as the Joker emerges from his mysterious past, he wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham. The Dark Knight must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Michael Caine

Votes: 1,927,895 | Gross: $534.86M

The high-point in the decade in my opinion: The Dark Knight still stands as the greatest superhero movie ever made. Growing form it's comic book roots, director Christopher Nolan plants a brilliant grittiness throughout the film that adds both the emotion and fun that many comic book movies miss. Not to mention one of the greatest performances ever put to celluloid in the form of Heath Ledger's Joker.

2. In Bruges (2008)

R | 107 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

67 Metascore

Guilt-stricken after a job gone wrong, hitman Ray and his partner await orders from their ruthless boss in Bruges, Belgium, the last place in the world Ray wants to be.

Director: Martin McDonagh | Stars: Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Ciarán Hinds, Elizabeth Berrington

Votes: 343,687 | Gross: $7.76M

A darkly comic story of two hitmen who have to hide out in Bruges after a job goes wrong. This movie came out of nowhere and took me by surprise. The greatest thing this film achieves is really the way it blends a hilariously dark style of humor with a very likeable an emotional story. The two hitmen are played to perfection by Farrel and Gleeson, and Ralph Fiennes turn as the Villainous mobster boss is also great.

3. Inglourious Basterds (2009)

R | 153 min | Adventure, Drama, War

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: 1,043,104 | Gross: $120.54M

Tarantino has been one of my favorite directors since Pulp Fiction, and here he created his best movie since that 90s masterpiece. Following the interlining stories of a cinema owner out for revenge, a horrific Nazi inspector called "the jew hunter" and a band of soldiers led by Brad Pitt, Tarantino manages to both deliver on the expected excess of over the top violence and glee-ful style, while at the same time telling his most complex and most mature story yet.

4. No Country for Old Men (2007)

R | 122 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

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: 716,133 | Gross: $74.28M

I've never really liked the Coens, and still don't, but for one movie the brothers seemed to hit everything on the mark. The story is about Josh Brolin who just so happens to find a stash of money, and gets involved with the criminal dealings of psycho gangster Javier Barden. This movie features some of the finest directing I've ever seen with some of the most tension filled sequences I've ever witnessed in a film. And while many people are a bit angry at the very open ended ending, I think it's great and concludes the story nicely.

5. Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004)

R | 137 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

83 Metascore

The Bride continues her quest of vengeance against her former boss and lover Bill, the reclusive bouncer Budd and the treacherous, one-eyed Elle.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Uma Thurman, David Carradine, Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah

Votes: 577,122 | Gross: $66.21M

Although I generally consider both volumes of Tarantino's revenge epic a single movie, if I had to rank them I'd say the second installment is just a tad bit better. Continuing the story of the Bride (Uma Thurman) who is after the man who once nearly killed her on her wedding day: Bill (David Carradine in a career best performance). The story concludes nicely while managing to include the emotion and complexity that the first volume was lacking.

6. Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003)

R | 111 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

69 Metascore

A former assassin known as The Bride wakens from a four-year coma. The child she carried in her womb is gone. Now she must wreak vengeance on the team of assassins who betrayed her - a team she was once part of.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Uma Thurman, David Carradine, Daryl Hannah, Michael Madsen

Votes: 848,141 | Gross: $70.10M

As I said above, I believe this volume is lacking a bit when it comes to story and emotion, but it makes up for it by being easily the best action movie of the decade. Uma Thurman goes on a killing spree to try to avenge the assassin squad that once shot her and left her for dead on her wedding day. The action is brilliant, and there's a really nice colorfulness to all of the sets and shots: not Tarantino's best movie, but definitely his most watchable.

7. Starsky & Hutch (2004)

PG-13 | 101 min | Comedy, Crime

55 Metascore

Two streetwise cops bust criminals in their red and white Ford Torino, with the help of a police snitch called "Huggy Bear".

Director: Todd Phillips | Stars: Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Snoop Dogg, Vince Vaughn

Votes: 127,924 | Gross: $88.24M

My favorite comedy of the decade stars Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson as the title characters in this comedy version of the hit 80s TV series. Theres plenty of laughs, alot of which comes from the excellent supporting cast which features people such as Vince Vaughn, Will Ferrel and Chris Penn. The movie is a real laugh a minute, without ever seeming overdone or desperate.

8. Catch Me If You Can (2002)

PG-13 | 141 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

75 Metascore

A seasoned FBI agent pursues Frank Abagnale Jr. who, before his 19th birthday, successfully forged millions of dollars' worth of checks while posing as a Pan Am pilot, a doctor, and a legal prosecutor.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Christopher Walken, Martin Sheen

Votes: 656,773 | Gross: $164.62M

9. Punch-Drunk Love (2002)

R | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

78 Metascore

A psychologically troubled novelty supplier is nudged towards a romance with an English woman, all the while being extorted by a phone-sex line run by a crooked mattress salesman, and purchasing stunning amounts of pudding.

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson | Stars: Adam Sandler, Emily Watson, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jason Andrews

Votes: 124,333 | Gross: $17.84M

10. Collateral (2004)

R | 120 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

71 Metascore

A cab driver finds himself the hostage of an engaging contract killer as he makes his rounds from hit to hit during one night in Los Angeles.

Director: Michael Mann | Stars: Tom Cruise, Jamie Foxx, Jada Pinkett Smith, Mark Ruffalo

Votes: 320,710 | Gross: $101.01M

11. The Departed (2006)

R | 151 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

85 Metascore

An undercover cop and a mole in the police attempt to identify each other while infiltrating an Irish gang in South Boston.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Mark Wahlberg

Votes: 1,007,383 | Gross: $132.38M

12. Children of Men (2006)

R | 109 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

84 Metascore

In 2027, in a chaotic world in which women have become somehow infertile, a former activist agrees to help transport a miraculously pregnant woman to a sanctuary at sea.

Director: Alfonso Cuarón | Stars: Julianne Moore, Clive Owen, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Caine

Votes: 404,516 | Gross: $35.55M

13. Snatch (2000)

R | 102 min | Comedy, Crime

55 Metascore

Unscrupulous boxing promoters, violent bookmakers, a Russian gangster, incompetent amateur robbers, and supposedly Jewish jewelers fight to track down a priceless stolen diamond.

Director: Guy Ritchie | Stars: Jason Statham, Brad Pitt, Benicio Del Toro, Dennis Farina

Votes: 682,555 | Gross: $30.33M

14. Jarhead (2005)

R | 125 min | Biography, Drama, War

58 Metascore

A psychological study of operations desert shield and desert storm during the gulf war; through the eyes of a U.S marine sniper who struggles to cope with the possibility his girlfriend may be cheating on him back home.

Director: Sam Mendes | Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx, Lucas Black, Scott MacDonald

Votes: 156,408 | Gross: $62.66M

15. Blood Diamond (2006)

R | 143 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller

64 Metascore

A fisherman, a smuggler, and a syndicate of businessmen match wits over the possession of a priceless diamond.

Director: Edward Zwick | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Djimon Hounsou, Jennifer Connelly, Kagiso Kuypers

Votes: 443,448 | Gross: $57.37M

16. Into the Wild (2007)

R | 148 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama

73 Metascore

After graduating from Emory University, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness. Along the way, Christopher encounters a series of characters that shape his life.

Director: Sean Penn | Stars: Emile Hirsch, Vince Vaughn, Catherine Keener, Marcia Gay Harden

Votes: 496,462 | Gross: $18.35M

17. Lost in Translation (2003)

R | 102 min | Drama

89 Metascore

A faded movie star and a neglected young woman form an unlikely bond after crossing paths in Tokyo.

Director: Sofia Coppola | Stars: Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Giovanni Ribisi, Anna Faris

Votes: 356,854 | Gross: $44.59M

18. Babel (I) (2006)

R | 143 min | Drama

69 Metascore

Tragedy strikes a married couple on vacation in the Moroccan desert, touching off an interlocking story involving four different families.

Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu | Stars: Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Gael García Bernal, Mohamed Akhzam

Votes: 264,174 | Gross: $34.30M

19. The Wrestler (2008)

R | 109 min | Drama, Sport

81 Metascore

A faded professional wrestler must retire, but finds his quest for a new life outside the ring a dispiriting struggle.

Director: Darren Aronofsky | Stars: Mickey Rourke, Marisa Tomei, Evan Rachel Wood, Mark Margolis

Votes: 270,165 | Gross: $26.24M

20. The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)

R | 110 min | Comedy, Drama

76 Metascore

The eccentric members of a dysfunctional family reluctantly gather under the same roof for various reasons.

Director: Wes Anderson | Stars: Gene Hackman, Gwyneth Paltrow, Anjelica Huston, Ben Stiller

Votes: 234,146 | Gross: $52.36M

21. The Cottage (2008)

Unrated | 92 min | Comedy, Crime, Horror

In a remote part of the countryside, a bungled kidnapping turns into a living nightmare for four central characters when they cross paths with a psychopathic farmer and all hell breaks ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Andrew Williams | Stars: Andy Serkis, Reece Shearsmith, Jennifer Ellison, Steven O'Donnell

Votes: 10,862

22. Donnie Darko (2001)

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

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: 663,927 | Gross: $0.19M

23. Iron Man (2008)

PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

79 Metascore

After being held captive in an Afghan cave, billionaire engineer Tony Stark creates a unique weaponized suit of armor to fight evil.

Director: Jon Favreau | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges

Votes: 794,937 | Gross: $318.41M

24. There Will Be Blood (2007)

R | 158 min | Drama

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: 435,998 | Gross: $40.22M

25. Ocean's Eleven (2001)

PG-13 | 116 min | Crime, Thriller

74 Metascore

Danny Ocean and his eleven accomplices plan to rob three Las Vegas casinos simultaneously.

Director: Steven Soderbergh | Stars: George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Matt Damon

Votes: 449,298 | Gross: $183.42M

26. Dawn of the Dead (2004)

R | 101 min | Action, Horror, Thriller

59 Metascore

A nurse, a policeman, a young married couple, a salesman, and other survivors of a worldwide plague that is producing aggressive, flesh-eating zombies, take refuge in a mega Midwestern shopping mall.

Director: Zack Snyder | Stars: Sarah Polley, Ving Rhames, Mekhi Phifer, Jake Weber

Votes: 211,996 | Gross: $59.02M

27. Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005)

PG-13 | 140 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

68 Metascore

Three years into the Clone Wars, the Jedi rescue Palpatine from Count Dooku. As Obi-Wan pursues a new threat, Anakin acts as a double agent between the Jedi Council and Palpatine and is lured into a sinister plan to rule the galaxy.

Director: George Lucas | Stars: Hayden Christensen, Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor, Samuel L. Jackson

Votes: 602,742 | Gross: $380.26M

28. Road to Perdition (2002)

R | 117 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

72 Metascore

Bonds of loyalty are put to the test when a hitman's son witnesses what his father does for a living.

Director: Sam Mendes | Stars: Tom Hanks, Tyler Hoechlin, Rob Maxey, Liam Aiken

Votes: 219,769 | Gross: $104.45M

29. American Psycho (2000)

R | 102 min | Crime, Drama

64 Metascore

A wealthy New York investment banking executive, Patrick Bateman, hides his alternate psychopathic ego from his co-workers and friends as he delves deeper into his violent, hedonistic fantasies.

Director: Mary Harron | Stars: Christian Bale, Justin Theroux, Josh Lucas, Bill Sage

Votes: 406,070 | Gross: $15.07M

30. The Weather Man (2005)

R | 102 min | Comedy, Drama

61 Metascore

A Chicago weather man, separated from his wife and children, debates whether professional and personal success are mutually exclusive.

Director: Gore Verbinski | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Hope Davis, Nicholas Hoult, Michael Caine

Votes: 72,914 | Gross: $12.48M