The nineties had plenty of epic and amazing films come out of the decade. A second Terminator, a new Star Wars prequel trilogy got started, anti-heroes like Leon became so prominent that guys like Snake Plissken could return. Before he was murdering Russians for killing his dog, Keanu Reeves was stopping mad bombers on a bus and jumping in and out of computers fighting evil AI. Elizabeth Berkeley tried to break out of her Saved By The Bell typecasting to disastrous results and we finally got to see New York cop John McClane actually work a case in New York!
The last decade of the 20th century was filled with all sorts of good movies. Some experimental movies played with time, like Go or Run, Lola, Run. We got to meet Kevin Smith, Robert Rodriguez, and Quentin Tarantino and watch them break down barriers. Girls like Alicia Silverstone and Christina Appelgate stoked our hearts, our innocence was lost when a little boy was killed by bee stings, and the boys of summer did their best to outwit a monster dog with an appetite for baseballs. What movies of the decade were the best? Here are the current Top 10 Movies Of The ’90s, According To IMDB.
10 Saving Private Ryan (1998)
When Steven Spielberg is on, there is absolutely no director on Earth who can put you into the emotion of a scene. D-Day was one of the largest battles the modern world has ever seen and plenty of young men had never seen the gruesome theater of war.
For 25+ harrowing minutes, the viewer experiences the same feelings the men on screen did. Then Tom Hanks and company lead us once more into the breach to save one man and bring him home, ensuring that his mother will at least see one of her boys again.
9 Forrest Gump (1994)
After winning an Oscar for Philadelphia, Tom Hanks was able to do it again just one year later for Forrest Gump. It’s easy to see why the film is such a beloved treasure. The movie weaves in and out of Americana throughout the fifties into the early eighties during the country’s golden, nostalgic, and, yes, very turbulent times.
But it’s all seen through Forrest’s kind, saccharine eyes. No matter where he went, or how grand an adventure his life gave him, he did it all with his heart and mind focused on only one thing: his beloved Jenny.
8 Unforgiven (1992)
Westerns used to be commonplace in Hollywood, similar to comic book movies now. Then, they were few and far between. When a western came out in the nineties, the bar was raised by two instant classics: Tombstone and Unforgiven.
Hollywood cowboy Clint Eastwood directed and starred as William Munny an old outlaw who has gone straight, but he’s sought after for that proverbial "one last job" to help kill a couple of outlaws who have torn up a brothel.
7 Goodfellas (1990)
“As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be a gangster” has to be one of the most iconic opening lines of any movie. Goodfellas came out and instantly became one of the greatest mob movies ever made.
Martin Scorsese teams up with DeNiro, Pesci, and Liotta to tell the incredible life story of Henry Hill, a mob associate, who along with his friends were responsible countless crimes, including the Lufthansa vault at JFK airport. Everyone’s on top of their game here, especially with the movie’s dark sense of humor that includes having dinner with mom while there’s a victim in the trunk. Lastly, the often parodied “funny like a clown” scene is certainly iconic.
6 The Silence Of The Lambs (1991)
To catch the twisted and depraved killer Buffalo Bill, the FBI turns to a rookie agent and hopes that she can persuade another madman, Dr. Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter, to provide insight on how to help catch Bill.
The Silence Of The Lambs is one of only three films to win all five of the big Academy Awards, and it’s easy to see why. Anthony Hopkins is hypnotic as Hannibal, reeling Jodie Foster’s Clarice in as their back and forth “quid-pro-quo” is what binds the film together.
5 Braveheart (1995)
Before Mel Gibson's reputation took a turn, he was a respected and bankable actor. His second foray in the director’s chair would be the epic Braveheart.
This is the story of William Wallace and his rebellion against King Edward after his wife was killed for assaulting the soldier who tried to rape her. That certainly was enough to push Wallace over the edge and begin to march to war. Historians would say this situation is wildly inaccurate, but the film is certainly inspiring.
4 Pulp Fiction (1994)
Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction deserves every accolade it has ever received or still receives. Two talkative hitmen, their boss, his drug-addled mob queen, and a boxer who refuses to take a dive are all front-and-center in this twisty-turny tale.
It revived John Travolta’s career, jump-started Uma Thurman and Samuel L. Jackson’s, and allowed Tarantino to rest on these laurels for over twenty years now. Not to mention, the movie has launched about a million imitators over the years as well.
3 The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
Hope and friendship are odd things to find in a dark and abysmal prison, but this is a Steven King prison story. Based on the short story, Rita Hayworth And The Shawshank Redemption, King’s novella and the film are decidedly ordinary compared to his horror stories.
But the tale of The Shawshank Redemption is still no less than transcendent and emotional from beginning to end. If you haven’t seen it, go do so right now.
2 American Beauty (1999)
The movie that gifted emo to the world or the movie about a plastic bag dancing in the wind. However, for fans of American Beauty, they know that movie is about so much more.
If fun family films like The Sandlot showcase Americana at its greatest and most innocent, then movies like American Beauty take the idea of the American Dream and smash it to bits, shown through the eyes of one man’s disillusionment and eventual mid-life crisis.
1 Schindler’s List (1993)
It’s no surprise that the list of great nineties movies begins and ends when Steven Spielberg. Seven bonafide hits in just ten years. People don’t even achieve that in their careers!
Schindler’s List is certainly not just his most important movie, but one of the most important movies of all time. The true story that the story is based on is astounding. Oskar Schindler went from Nazi supporter to Jewish hero, who did all he could to save as many Jews as he could from the camps during the Holocaust.