The Last Decade of the 20th Century

by andykypros | created - 08 Feb 2014 | updated - 14 Feb 2014 | Public

Movies made from 1990 to 1999

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1. Dances with Wolves (1990)

PG-13 | 181 min | Adventure, Drama, Western

72 Metascore

Lieutenant John Dunbar, assigned to a remote western Civil War outpost, befriends wolves and Indians, making him an intolerable aberration in the military.

Director: Kevin Costner | Stars: Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, Rodney A. Grant

Votes: 209,080 | Gross: $184.21M

Many of the native Indians were visibly moved by the scene where the Sioux encounter a field full of dead, skinned buffalo.

2. The Godfather: Part III (1990)

R | 162 min | Crime, Drama

60 Metascore

In the midst of trying to legitimize his business dealings in New York City and Italy in 1979, aging Mafia Don Michael Corleone seeks to avow for his sins, while taking his nephew Vincent Mancini under his wing.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, Andy Garcia, Talia Shire

Votes: 309,438 | Gross: $66.67M

Al Pacino was offered $5 million but wanted $7 million plus profits from gross to reprise his role as Michael. Francis Ford Coppola refused and threatened to rewrite the script by starting off with Michael's funeral sequence instead of the film's introduction. Pacino agreed to the $5-million offer.

3. Goodfellas (1990)

R | 146 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

89 Metascore

The story of Henry Hill and his life in the mob, covering his relationship with his wife Karen Hill and his mob partners Jimmy Conway and Tommy DeVito in the Italian-American crime syndicate.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco

Votes: 844,342 | Gross: $46.84M

After Joe Pesci's mother saw the film, she told her son that the movie was good, then asked him if he had to swear so much.

4. Miller's Crossing (1990)

R | 115 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

66 Metascore

Tom Regan, an advisor to a Prohibition-era crime boss, tries to keep the peace between warring mobs but gets caught in divided loyalties.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: Gabriel Byrne, Albert Finney, John Turturro, Marcia Gay Harden

Votes: 113,369 | Gross: $5.08M

Bernie is referred to as a Schmatte. 'Schmatte' is a Yiddish word for an old rag and was also used colloquially as a label for things of poor quality or anything worthless. Caspar's use is derogatory, labeling Bernie worthless both as a man and as a Jew.

5. Misery (1990)

R | 107 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

75 Metascore

After a famous author is rescued from a car crash by a fan of his novels, he comes to realize that the care he is receiving is only the beginning of a nightmare of captivity and abuse.

Director: Rob Reiner | Stars: James Caan, Kathy Bates, Richard Farnsworth, Frances Sternhagen

Votes: 154,071 | Gross: $61.28M

In Stephen King's novel "Misery", Annie cuts off Paul's foot to prevent him from escaping. Screenwriter William Goldman has stated that the reason he decided to adapt the book to film was because of this gruesome scene and the effect it would have on the audience. However, Rob Reiner and Andrew Scheinman's script revision changed the method of torture to Paul getting his ankles broken with a sledgehammer. Goldman was opposed to the change until viewing the film.

6. Terminator 2 (1991)

R | 137 min | Action, Sci-Fi

75 Metascore

A cyborg, identical to the one who failed to kill Sarah Connor, must now protect her teenage son, John Connor, from a more advanced and powerful cyborg.

Director: James Cameron | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong, Robert Patrick

Votes: 851,630 | Gross: $204.84M

Arnold Schwarzenegger's young daughter screamed the first time she saw her father's face made-up to show the robotics appearing underneath the skin tissue.

7. JFK (1991)

R | 189 min | Drama, History, Thriller

72 Metascore

New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison discovers there's more to the Kennedy assassination than the official story.

Director: Oliver Stone | Stars: Kevin Costner, Gary Oldman, Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau

Votes: 125,501 | Gross: $70.41M

Oliver Stone showed this film in December of 1991 to all of Congress on Capitol Hill. It led to the 1992 Assassinations Disclosure Act

8. Baraka (1992)

Not Rated | 96 min | Documentary

A collection of expertly photographed scenes of human life and religion.

Director: Ron Fricke

Votes: 31,421 | Gross: $1.25M

Baraka is an ancient Sufi word, which can be translated "as a blessing, or the breath, or the essence of life from which the evolutionary process unfolds."

9. Malcolm X (1992)

PG-13 | 202 min | Biography, Drama, History

72 Metascore

Biographical epic of the controversial and influential Black Nationalist leader, from his early life and career as a small-time gangster, to his ministry as a member of the Nation of Islam.

Director: Spike Lee | Stars: Denzel Washington, Angela Bassett, Delroy Lindo, Spike Lee

Votes: 71,485 | Gross: $48.17M

The names of the three assassins charged with Malcolm X's murder are listed in the final credits for the film.

10. Reservoir Dogs (1992)

R | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

79 Metascore

After a simple jewelry heist goes terribly wrong, the surviving criminals begin to suspect that one of them is a police informant.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Chris Penn

Votes: 773,279 | Gross: $2.83M

Madonna - who is the main topic of the opening conversation - really liked the film but refuted Quentin Tarantino's interpretation of her song 'Like a Virgin'. She gave him a copy of her 'Erotica' album, signed "To Quentin. It's not about dick, it's about love. Madonna."

11. Unforgiven (1992)

R | 130 min | Drama, Western

85 Metascore

Retired Old West gunslinger William Munny reluctantly takes on one last job, with the help of his old partner and a young man.

Director: Clint Eastwood | Stars: Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Morgan Freeman, Richard Harris

Votes: 320,940 | Gross: $101.16M

With inflation, the $1,000 bounty on the cowboys would be the equivalent to $110,000 now at a conservative estimate.

12. A Bronx Tale (1993)

R | 121 min | Crime, Drama

80 Metascore

A father becomes worried when a local gangster befriends his son in the Bronx in the 1960s.

Director: Robert De Niro | Stars: Robert De Niro, Chazz Palminteri, Lillo Brancato, Francis Capra

Votes: 110,366 | Gross: $17.27M

Kathrine Narducci brought her 9-year-old son to the open casting call to audition for the role of young Calogero. When she saw that the role of Calogero's mother was available she asked if she could also audition and got the part.

13. Carlito's Way (1993)

R | 144 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

A Puerto Rican former convict, just released from prison, pledges to stay away from drugs and violence despite the pressure around him and lead on to a better life outside of N.Y.C.

Director: Brian De Palma | Stars: Al Pacino, Sean Penn, Penelope Ann Miller, John Leguizamo

Votes: 178,077 | Gross: $36.95M

The exterior of the hospital where Carlito visits his bedridden attorney is the same one where Vito Corleone is taken in The Godfather (1972), also starring Al Pacino.

14. Groundhog Day (1993)

PG | 101 min | Comedy, Fantasy, Romance

72 Metascore

A weatherman finds himself inexplicably living the same day over and over again.

Director: Harold Ramis | Stars: Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott, Stephen Tobolowsky

Votes: 510,715 | Gross: $70.91M

Writer Danny Rubin said that one of the inspirational moments in the creation of the story came after reading "Interview with the Vampire," which got him thinking about what it would be like to live forever.

15. In the Name of the Father (1993)

R | 133 min | Biography, Drama

84 Metascore

A man's coerced confession to an IRA bombing he did not commit results in the imprisonment of his father as well. An English lawyer fights to free them.

Director: Jim Sheridan | Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Pete Postlethwaite, Alison Crosbie, Philip King

Votes: 132,776 | Gross: $25.01M

In preparation for his role, Daniel Day-Lewis lost 30 pounds and spent nights in the jail cell on the set as crew members threw water and verbal abuse at him.

16. Jurassic Park (1993)

PG-13 | 127 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller

68 Metascore

During a preview tour, a theme park suffers a major power breakdown that allows its cloned dinosaur exhibits to run amok.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Richard Attenborough

Votes: 724,161 | Gross: $402.45M

Both the film and the book generated so much interest in dinosaurs that the study of paleontology has had a record increase in students, and interest in general has skyrocketed, and has been at an all-time high ever since.

17. Schindler's List (1993)

R | 195 min | Biography, Drama, History

93 Metascore

In German-occupied Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazi Germans.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley, Caroline Goodall

Votes: 1,009,041 | Gross: $96.07M

Steven Spielberg was not paid for this film. He refused to accept a salary, citing that it would be "blood money". When Survivor Mila Pfefferberg was introduced to Ralph Fiennes on the set, she began shaking uncontrollably, as he reminded her too much of the real Amon Goeth. Steven Spielberg offered the job of director to Roman Polanski. Polanski turned it down because the subject was too personal. He had lived in the Krakow ghetto until the age of 8, when he escaped on the day of the liquidation. His mother later died at Auschwitz concentration camp. Polanski would later direct his own film about the Holocaust, The Pianist (2002).

18. Ed Wood (1994)

R | 127 min | Biography, Comedy, Drama

70 Metascore

Ambitious but troubled movie director Edward D. Wood Jr. tries his best to fulfill his dreams, despite his lack of support.

Director: Tim Burton | Stars: Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker, Patricia Arquette

Votes: 152,599 | Gross: $5.89M

This film cost more to produce than all of Edward D. Wood Jr.'s films put together.

19. Forrest Gump (1994)

PG-13 | 142 min | Drama, Romance

82 Metascore

The presidencies of Kennedy and Johnson, Vietnam, Watergate, and other history unfold through the perspective of an Alabama man with an IQ of 75.

Director: Robert Zemeckis | Stars: Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise, Sally Field

Votes: 1,485,396 | Gross: $330.25M

Forrest and Dan's Shrimp Emporium "Bubba Gump", is now a themed restaurant in 33 locations around the world in the U.S., Japan, China, Mexico, Malaysia, Philippines and Bali.

20. The Lion King (1994)

G | 88 min | Animation, Adventure, Drama

83 Metascore

A Lion cub crown prince is tricked by a treacherous uncle into thinking he caused his father's death and flees into exile in despair, only to learn in adulthood his identity and his responsibilities.

Directors: Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff | Stars: Matthew Broderick, Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones, Whoopi Goldberg

Votes: 767,522 | Gross: $312.90M

To date this movie still holds the record for being the highest grossing traditionally animated film in history.

21. Braveheart (1995)

R | 178 min | Biography, Drama, History

68 Metascore

When his secret bride is executed for assaulting an English soldier who tried to rape her, Sir William Wallace begins a revolt against King Edward I of England.

Director: Mel Gibson | Stars: Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau, Patrick McGoohan, Angus Macfadyen

Votes: 845,343 | Gross: $75.60M

The film correctly depicts the father of Robert the Bruce suffering from leprosy in his later years; Robert the Bruce himself would be overcome by the disease in the late 1320s.

22. Casino (1995)

R | 178 min | Crime, Drama

73 Metascore

A tale of greed, deception, money, power, and murder occur between two best friends: a mafia enforcer and a casino executive, compete against each other over a gambling empire, and over a fast living and fast loving socialite.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Robert De Niro, Sharon Stone, Joe Pesci, James Woods

Votes: 388,589 | Gross: $42.44M

This is the last film to be censored in Sweden.

23. Heat (1995)

R | 170 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

76 Metascore

A group of professional bank robbers start to feel the heat from police when they unknowingly leave a clue at their latest heist, while both sides attempt to find balance between their personal and professional lives.

Director: Michael Mann | Stars: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Jon Voight

Votes: 494,126 | Gross: $67.44M

In June of 2002, the scene involving the shootout after the bank robbery was shown to United States Marine recruits at MCRD San Diego as an example of the proper way to retreat while under fire.

24. Se7en (1995)

R | 127 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

65 Metascore

Two detectives, a rookie and a veteran, hunt a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins as his motives.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Morgan Freeman, Brad Pitt, Kevin Spacey, Andrew Kevin Walker

Votes: 1,194,460 | Gross: $100.13M

Surprisingly, this enjoyed some degree of success in post-revolutionary Iran where it did well at the box office (this was prior to the hardline Iranian regime taking control and effectively outlawing anything pro-Western). Its success in Iran can partly be attributed to the fact that the film's cinematographer, Darius Khondji, hails from that country.

25. Toy Story (1995)

G | 81 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy

95 Metascore

A cowboy doll is profoundly threatened and jealous when a new spaceman figure supplants him as top toy in a boy's room.

Director: John Lasseter | Stars: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles, Jim Varney

Votes: 734,908 | Gross: $191.80M

The highest-grossing movie of 1995.

26. Twelve Monkeys (1995)

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

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: 521,616 | Gross: $57.14M

Bruce Willis took a lower salary than his star-status would normally entitle, partly because of budget restrictions, but mostly because he wanted to work with Terry Gilliam. Actually Bruce did the movie for free. It was only after the movie was released that he was paid.

27. Hillsborough (1996 TV Movie)

100 min | Drama, Sport

Drama based on the real life events of April 1989, when ninety-six Liverpool supporters were crushed to death during an F.A. Cup Semi-Final match against Nottingham Forest at Sheffield ... See full summary »

Director: Charles McDougall | Stars: Tracey Wilkinson, Kevin Knapman, Mark Womack, Sarah Graham

Votes: 670

This movie is about the disaster in the Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, where 96 supporters died by getting pressed against the fences.

28. Donnie Brasco (1997)

R | 127 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

76 Metascore

An FBI undercover agent infiltrates the mob and finds himself identifying more with the mafia life, at the expense of his regular one.

Director: Mike Newell | Stars: Al Pacino, Johnny Depp, Michael Madsen, Bruno Kirby

Votes: 246,286 | Gross: $41.91M

Donnie bets his kids $20 that they can't get through breakfast without saying three words, and is daughter replies "you lose." The scene is based on a famous incident involving writer Dorothy Parker and President Calvin Coolidge, known as "Silent Cal" for his quiet manner and hatred of small talk. Parker, seated next to Coolidge, turned to him and said "Mr. Coolidge, I've made a bet against a fellow who said it was impossible to get more than two words out of you." Coolidge allegedly replied "You lose."

29. Rosewood (1997)

R | 140 min | Action, Drama, History

71 Metascore

A dramatization of a 1923 horrific racist lynch mob attack on an African American community.

Director: John Singleton | Stars: Jon Voight, Ving Rhames, Don Cheadle, Bruce McGill

Votes: 6,666 | Gross: $13.10M

A dramatization of a 1923 horrific racist lynch mob attack on an African American community.

30. Life Is Beautiful (1997)

PG-13 | 116 min | Comedy, Drama, War

59 Metascore

When an open-minded Jewish librarian and his son become victims of the Holocaust, he uses a perfect mixture of will, humor, and imagination to protect his son from the dangers around their camp.

Director: Roberto Benigni | Stars: Roberto Benigni, Nicoletta Braschi, Giorgio Cantarini, Giustino Durano

Votes: 508,471 | Gross: $57.60M

Roberto Benigni's Oscar win for Best Actor was the second time a performance completely in Italian had been awarded. The previous winner was Sophia Loren for Two Women (1960).

31. American History X (1998)

R | 119 min | Crime, Drama

62 Metascore

A former neo-nazi skinhead tries to prevent his younger brother from going down the same wrong path that he did.

Director: Tony Kaye | Stars: Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly D'Angelo, Jennifer Lien

Votes: 897,128 | Gross: $6.72M

Seth wears a shirt during the basketball game featuring the number 88. This is a Nazi skinhead code for HH, or "Heil Hitler," H being the 8th letter of the alphabet. It also refers to a set of 88 precepts written by the neo-nazi leader David Lane. The 88 precepts are rules and concepts that all White Supremacists lived by.

32. Saving Private Ryan (1998)

R | 169 min | Drama, War

90 Metascore

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.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns

Votes: 1,031,101 | Gross: $216.54M

Many veterans of D-Day have congratulated director Steven Spielberg for the film's authenticity, including actor James Doohan, best known as Scotty from Star Trek (1966). Doohan lost the middle finger of his right hand and was wounded in the leg during the war. Also, he participated in the invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944, at Juno Beach, where the 3rd Canadian infantry division led the attack. He commended Spielberg for not leaving out any gory details.

33. The Truman Show (1998)

PG | 103 min | Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi

90 Metascore

An insurance salesman/adjuster discovers his entire life is actually a television show.

Director: Peter Weir | Stars: Jim Carrey, Ed Harris, Laura Linney, Noah Emmerich

Votes: 781,309 | Gross: $125.62M

The film is studied in Media Ethics courses, particularly focusing on the characters of creator Christof, best friend Marlon and the "prostituting" of Truman's wife, Meryl.

34. The Green Mile (1999)

R | 189 min | Crime, Drama, Fantasy

61 Metascore

The lives of guards on Death Row are affected by one of their charges: a black man accused of child murder and rape, yet who has a mysterious gift.

Director: Frank Darabont | Stars: Tom Hanks, Michael Clarke Duncan, David Morse, Bonnie Hunt

Votes: 932,480 | Gross: $136.80M

The prison guards wear uniforms to give the movie a better feel, even though uniforms weren't in use at the time in which the movie is set.

35. Magnolia (1999)

R | 188 min | Drama

77 Metascore

An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness, and meaning in the San Fernando Valley.

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson | Stars: Tom Cruise, Jason Robards, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman

Votes: 260,678 | Gross: $22.46M

Almost every location contains at least one picture or painting of a magnolia flower.

36. Audition (1999)

R | 115 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery

69 Metascore

A widower takes an offer to screen girls at a special audition, arranged for him by a friend to find him a new wife. The one he fancies is not who she appears to be after all.

Director: Takashi Miike | Stars: Ryo Ishibashi, Eihi Shiina, Tetsu Sawaki, Jun Kunimura

Votes: 61,823

When the film was screened at the Rotterdam Film Festival 2000 it had a record number of walkouts. At the Swiss premiere someone passed out and needed emergency room attention.