Ultimately, no matter what you say about movies, there is going to be someone that disagrees with your point of view. Therefore, the best thing you can do is to be honest about what you feel and leave the rest open to debate. These are my personal feelings about the movies of 1997. Some of which I hope you will share, but not everyone. If you think I should watch a film over from a new angle, or I’ve missed one you feel is worth checking out, please let me know. I welcome discussions and even debate, but bring your argument civilly.
I take the top 150 movies of year and break them down in what I think of them.
My 1990s History So Far
1992- It Sucked!
1994- It Sucked!
1995- Good Year!
1996 – It Sucked! (barely)
Was 1997 a Good Year in film history?
Masterpieces (2 Points )
Princess Mononoke – I love this movie. One of the greatest animated films of all time. (It may be my favorite animated film ever, in fact.)
Movies I Love/Want to Own (or Already Own) (2 Points)
As Good As It Gets- An awesome drama with an even better cast. Jack Nicholson showcases his wonderful talents. (Few play the pretentious prick better than he)
Men In Black – A classic sci-fi comedy from the late 1990s that is still quite awesome today.
The Fifth Element- A personal favorite of mine from the science-fiction drama. Great cast, well directed, good cast. A perfect mix of an imaginative future, humor, and good amounts of crisp action.
Good Will Hunting – One of the better films of the 1990s. A well-written drama with a great cast.
Movies I really enjoy, but probably wouldn’t buy.(1 Point)
Hercules- For 1990’s Disney, this was not their gold standard animated film, but still far above most others even today.
The Devil’s Advocate – One of Al Pacino’s finest performances ever. A dark, twisted, and intense movie with a hint and then some of the sinister. This movie is f%$ked up, but it is also kind of brilliant how it does things.
L.A. Confidential- Among the best crime-drama ever made. It may not be The Godfather, but it is still exceptional because of its cast. I don’t like movies in the crime genre very much, but I really enjoy this movie. Rarely happens and it impressed me.
In & Out- A comedy/satire about being gay in the 1990s. It asks some tough questions in what was still a very unforgiving time. https://andrewthemovieguy714.wordpress.com/2015/11/12/the-rewind-1990s-in-out/
Con Air- A fun action film starring Nicolas Cage. https://andrewthemovieguy714.wordpress.com/2015/11/11/the-rewind-1990s-con-air/
Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery- Funny, even tab0o in its day. Austin Powers remains one of the funniest movies ever made. https://andrewthemovieguy714.wordpress.com/2015/11/17/the-rewind-1990saustin-powers-international-man-of-mystery/
Face/Off – A good action crime movie from the late 1990s. Relies heavily on Travolta and Cage’s awesome performances. https://andrewthemovieguy714.wordpress.com/2015/11/15/the-rewind-1990s-faceoff/
Starship Troopers – A great science-fiction war film about a war between the troubled human society and space bugs. It’s a wild movie, for more- check out https://andrewthemovieguy714.wordpress.com/2015/11/10/the-rewind-1997-starship-troopers/
Movies I Respect, but Don’t Particularly Enjoy (Basically my It’s good, but I’d only watch once list.) (1 Point)
Anastasia– Animated movies with historical characters aren’t meant to be accurate historically, but this one takes that to a whole new level.
Boogie Nights- It has a great cast featuring the likes of Mark Wahlberg, Julianne Moore, Burt Reynolds, John C. Reilly, Don Cheadle, William H. Macy. However, I can’t relate to the characters at all, I have next to no interest in the subject or plot of the movie. Hard to just get into this movie, though I recognize the talent behind it.
Titanic- There are aspects of the movie I love. The attention to detail, the history, the visuals, but the love story is a complete bore for me.
Contact- This movie does a lot of things right, but it disappoints in one key area. It’s rather bland for something which covers a topic so interesting.
The Game- A great film by David Fincher. Featuring Michael Douglas and Sean Penn. Good directing and good acting. Worthwhile if you are getting into watching films, especially from the late 1990s.
Gattaca- There are a lot of science fiction movies I enjoy, but this one couldn’t hold my attention. The movie is intelligent and well made, but I don’t give a crap about the main character. He bores me and I guess that is why I don’t care for this movie even though I can see why many people find it beautiful.
Amistad – I think the Amistad from a historical standpoint should be remembered and discussed. This film is Spielberg directed and features some very talented people like Morgan Freeman, Matthew McConaughey, Djimon Hounsou, Anthony Hopkins, Anna Paquin, and Stellan Skarsgard. I am the type of person that in general would rather read about a historical event like the Amistad rather than watch it unfold on the screen.
Chasing Amy – A very interesting movie. Directed by Kevin Smith and starring Ben Affleck. It dives into the world which is trying to have greater understanding of the LBGT movement. The film is very insightful beneath the surface. I think the only thing that always threw me with the movie was the Kevin Smith style of humor. It doesn’t always work with me.
The Rainmaker- Directed by Francis Ford Coppola and starring Matt Damon, Danny Devito and Claire Danes. The film was inspired by the John Grisham novel of the same name. I never really got into the writing of John Grisham. If you are a fan of his work, you may (or may still not) like this movie.
Suicide Kings- The main reason I watched this film was for Christopher Walken. The only reason I’d watch this movie again is for Christopher Walken’s performance. A group of youngsters kidnap a notorious mafia man. Turns out they got a lot more than what they realized.
Wag the Dog – A political/war satire film. Featuring great performances by Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro. Also starring Willy Nelson, William H. Macy, Kirsten Dunst, Anne Heche, Denis Leary, and Woody Harrelson. The acting is great, the humor works, especially if you like things dry, but some of the writing slumps.
The Full Monty- I didn’t find the jokes to be as funny as others. I’m not all that squeamish about nudity as some are. I know many people enjoy this film, but it’s not for me.
Seven Years in Tibet- It has a powerful message about the struggles of Tibet and China’s takeover. I appreciate the film in what is tries to do. It’s still not one I’d watch over and over again.
Grosse Point Blank- I have friends that find this movie hilarious, but I don’t get it. Humor can be tricky and there are some fun aspects to this film, but when it comes down to it. I don’t care.
Average Movies (0 Points)
Event Horizon- It’s a fun science-fiction movie. Not clever, but fun enough.
The Lost World: Jurassic Park- There are some awesome moments, but they are short lived. This movie is a huge let down from the 1993 original.
Tomorrow Never Dies- This movie was my introduction to James Bond and it underwhelmed me.
Mousehunt – When this movie came out. It was fun and quirky. Nathan Lane and Christopher Walken were great. This movie isn’t for everyone, but for the kid inside you it can be fun still. It’s like McCauley Culkin was a mouse. (Still better than most Home Alone movies.)
Money Talks – Shrugs. You can watch this movie and when you are done. You will really not be any better off than before.
Nothing to Lose – Think of it as a cheap knockoff of Trading Places (1983). Just watch Trading Places instead.
The Man Who Knew Too Little- Bill Murray can make a movie a lot better than it is. Even with him doing decent work, this movie just doesn’t cut it.
Fierce Creatures- has it’s humorous moments. I enjoy John Cleese in the role, but not much else here.
Mr. Nice Guy- Not Jackie Chan’s best movie, but has some fun action scenes still.
Air Force One- Loaded with action. Harrison Ford is president and he kicks some serious butt.
The Edge- There are some good performances in it, particularly from Anthony Hopkins, but as a whole not very good.
Liar Liar – Certainly has some funny moments, but Jim Carrey has some much funnier films.
My Best Friend’s Wedding – An average Rom Com.
Alien Resurrection – A step up from Alien 3, but with the exception of a couple scenes, there is a reason the new alien films will completely eradicate this movie from the storyline.
Scream 2 – Trying to continue the Scream franchise, this sequels does a decent job. It is more ridiculous and has some truly horrific moments in it
Bad Movies ( 1 point)
Vegas Vacation- The Vacation films have lost their edge and their humor by this point. Stick with Christmas Vacation and the Original. I think you’ll be satisfied by avoiding this one.
Mimic- Not the worst horror movie, but neither is it great. Using silly science without even trying to make it legit.
The Postman- I don’t hate this movie as much as others do. Still, its not great either. Just not the worst movie ever made.
Volcano – The science is so wrong in this. Tommy Lee Jones tries, but it’s not enough.
Good Burger – Welcome to Good Burger, home of the Good Burger. May I take your oorder. Yeah, I’ve seen the movie. Didn’t even need to look that line up. It’s burned into my memory. The movie has some silly things that you can enjoy. Ah, the 1990s, but for the most part forget it
Air Bud – A dog that plays basketball. That works. It’s a kids film, filled with cheap laughs and thrills. I won’t bash it because it seems all pretty innocent.
Flubber- Robin Williams makes this film watchable. I think it gets a bad rap. Better than some would say.
Wishmaster – A Wes Craven production that hit its mark. It has some cool ideas behind it, scary moments, but by in large it was a bust.
George of the Jungle- Oh, Brendan Frasor, capable of solid performances and then also something like this. I can forgive you for Encino Man, you were young and stupid……but this movie, this is just stupid. To be fair, they amped up the silly for children, but CHILDREN DON’T NEED TO BE SPOON FED MATERIAL!
Father’s Day- With so much talent on screen with the likes of Bill Murray and Robin Williams. How could this movie suck? It found a way. I’m not saying that it wasn’t enjoyable at times, but by in large. It was treacherous.
Beverly Hill Ninja – This movie showed that Chris Farely’s lovable idiot character had limitations. I’m not sure what he would be today. I could only hope he wouldn’t have turned into another Sandler. We will never know.
The Borrowers- Something wasn’t borrowed, it was stolen.
American Werewolf In Paris- Avoid this werewolf movie the best you can. It’s terrible. Watch American Werewolf in London, it is in every way a superior film.
G.I. Jane- It had a few moments. I credit Demi Moore for effort, but not much more than that.
I Know What You Did Last Summer- Like most slasher horror in the 1990s, it sucks. Basically this was a studios asnswer to the success that came from Scream. Except it lacked the genius of Wes Craven.
Spawn – Ugh…comic books movies sure can suck. This is early proof of that. Talk about something that actually could use a remake.
Worst Movies Ever (2 Points)
Home Alone 3- The first two worked, but by the third one McCauley Culkin was much too old. I’m not sure Culkin could have saved it anyway as it goes into the books as one of the worst ever.
Anaconda – This movie initially didn’t come out awful, but it has aged like milk left out in the sun. The acting, the CGI, the “scares”, the Syfy channel has better original material now.
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation- Somewhere someone is watching this……..and their innocence is lost. It is among the worst movies of all time. So bad you would have thought Ed Wood made it.
Speed 2: Cruise Control – Speed is cool with Dennis Hopper and Keanu Reeves. Speed 2 is a classic 1990s move of trying to stretch an idea too far in the name of profits
The Relic- Another cliché horror film from the 90’s. Truly the ultimate wasteland for horror.
Spice World- The Spice Girls were a thing, very popular in the 1990’s. They even made their own awful movie.
Jungle 2 Jungle- Tim Allen’s career is much like a roller-coaster. This was on his way down.
Batman and Robin- This movie is legendary for how awful it is. Go ahead, try to watch it. Waste those two hours.
Well, getting into the late 1990’s, it certainly seems things were on the rise. I can’t call this year good or bad.
As you see, there was some great movies coming out this year. David Fincher, Ang Lee, Steven Spielberg, Kevin Smith, Francis Ford Coppola, Luc Beeson, and James Cameron all having movies come out. They are staples of greatness (or at least goodness) in film history. However, then you have the dreadful movies that ruined franchises like Mortal Kombat and Batman. We had Tim Allen, Chevy Chase, and Jim Carrey hitting new lows. Then there was Spice World, which is everything wrong with the 90’s rolled into one movie. (Look deep within your heart Spice Girl fans, you know it to be true!)
In the end I saw 1997 is a draw. I won’t say it sucks, but I also can say it’s great.
What are your thoughts on 1997? Would it be a tie with you or would you swing one way or another?