My Top Movies of the Decade

by LeeAnne on January 8, 2010


I have always been a film geek, but when I began my current job, an even bigger film geek coworker got me into the tradition of compiling top ten movie lists each year.  Every January, we exchange our lists, along with those of a few other movie-loving coworkers and friends.  I love how unique the lists are—they reflect the tastes of each person and show how personal the cinematic experience is in general.  My favorites tend to honor those with creative art direction, music, and stories of hope or love.

This year, an additional challenge was compiling the best movies of the decade.  Whew!  It wasn’t easy.  And as much as I tried, I couldn’t narrow it down to 10.  It was hard enough selecting ordinals for anything beyond 5!  It was also incredibly interesting to contrast this with individual years.  In some cases, my favorite of the year (at the time) didn’t even make the decade list (such as Crash and Slumdog Millionaire).  They just didn’t hold up in hindsight.  Even more interesting is that none of the individual Lord of the Rings installments appeared in my year-end best-ofs, but when I considered the trilogy as a whole, it certainly stood out as the cinematic achievement of the decade.

Let’s just get down to it.  You’re free to disagree, and I’d love to hear your additions or subtractions in the comments section!

1. Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001–2003)

2. Moulin Rouge (2001)

3. Children of Men (2006)

4. Amelie (2001)

5. Wall-E (2008)

6. Chicago (2002)

7. Memento (2000)

8. Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

9. Atonement (2007)

10. Lost in Translation (2003)

11. The New World (2005)

12. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

13. Spellbound (2002)

14. Whale Rider (2002)

15. Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

And, of course, an honorable mention must be given to Love Actually (2003), definitely the film of the decade I’ve watched more times than any other.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

writerleeanne January 21, 2010 at 5:48 pm

Yay! Glad there’s another person out there obsessed with Love Actually. :o) I’m looking forward to Valentine’s Day, which looks a lot like the American version of Love Actually. Though it likely won’t be as good… sigh…

As for Lord of the Rings, I know, I know, I’ve been getting a lot of crap for that one. :o)

Laura DeSilva January 21, 2010 at 5:42 pm

I’ve probably seen Love Actually at least 100 times, I adore that movie.

Lost in Translation, the cinematography is so beautiful it almost makes me cry. Just a gorgeous film to watch.

Lord of the Rings – can you pick a trilogy as your #1 movie? Just kidding!

writerleeanne January 12, 2010 at 1:16 pm

ROFL! Thanks, Aaron.

aaron January 12, 2010 at 1:14 pm

i noticed you didn’t have any wes anderson either, so here’s my list:

1. royal tenenbaums
2. o brother, where are thou?
3. darjeeling limited
4. no country for old men
5. fantastic mr fox
6. burn after reading
7. life aquatic with steve zissou
8. the man who wasn’t there
9. lady killers
10. intolerable cruelty

writerleeanne January 8, 2010 at 7:34 pm

Amazingly enough, in terms of the Coen brothers, I’ve only seen “Fargo” and “The Big Lebowski,” neither of which came out in the last decade. Unfortunately, I didn’t like them much, either. However, I’m up for trying more, and I’ve heard “A Serious Man” is quite good. I definitely think you should be crazy enough to attempt a list of your own. I’d love to see it! :o)

abrassea January 8, 2010 at 6:50 pm

while i don’t completely agree with the top 5, those are all good movies. after that the list is a little hit or miss with me, and i think amelie and eternal sunshine are the only ones that might make a top 10 list for me if i were crazy enough to attempt to make one. i’m a little sad by the complete lack of coen brothers.

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