This is a list of fifteen movie gems from the 1990s – some a little a bit popular, some not so popular, but all rather good I must say. Basically I’m leaning more towards those ones we don’t hear about as much, rather than another list with Pulp Fiction and Goodfellas and fucking Forest Gump.
15. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)
This is a really fun little film, ideal to watch on a lazy Sunday. Loosely based on The Taming of the Shrew, it’s a ‘teen rom com’ (better than it sounds) which is funny and cute and don’t we all just LOVE Heath Ledger in it soooo badly. Joseph Gordon Levitt is sweet in it as well – but then again this was made before he grew into the smuggest bastard actor ever.
14. Stir of Echoes (1999)
One of the main reasons this film isn’t more talked about is because The Sixth Sense came out the same year and was the big creepy blockbuster. And yes The Sixth Sense is great but Stir of Echoes is still a really decent and genuinely creepy ghost movie.
13. Cube (1997)
A low budget, sci-fi / horror flick (got you hooked already) that spawned a few sequels of ‘cult’ status (and to be fair I quite like them all). It’s a classic formula of ‘strangers waking up in a room’ – no idea how or why they are there – realising they are trapped inside a giant, inter-movable cube which is helpfully filled with booby traps. Even the bad acting in this movie is fun.
12. The Craft (1996)
The Craft is so 1990s it’s great. The clothes, the hair, the jewellery, the fascination with witchcraft. We follow new girl at school (Robin Tunney) as she befriends a scary group of girls led by big mouth Nancy (big mouth Fairuza Bulk). The Craft is an entertaining, kinda retro film combining the best elements from the 90s with spooky stuff, girly stuff and the angst of being a teenager.
11. Arachnophobia (1990)
Now before you start rolling your eyes at this crap entry just think about it. Now you thought about it? YES IT’S GREAT! Creepy, thrilling, silly and genuinely comical, I’ve ALWAYS had a place in my soft little heart for this film. Let’s face it spiders are internationally feared by most of us and I guarantee it’ll leave your skin crawling.
10. Drop Dead Gorgeous (1999)
This is a clever mockumentary masked as a girlie film. The premise is simple – a documentary crew are following a group of ‘small town’ American girls as they compete in the ‘Miss America’ beauty pageant. It would be interesting anyway, but just to heat things up someone is soooo intent on winning that there are dead bodies mounting up. This is a funny and well written film with some fantastic actresses and comical lines.
9. Let Him Have It (1991)
Have your tissues handy because this biographical film is pretty sad. Telling the story of Derek Bentley, a young man who was hanged for murder in England during the 1950s. It is a controversial case even to this day, due to a lack of evidence and no concern for Bentley, who suffered learning difficulties and never even pulled the trigger of the murder gun. Still a breath taking case, even to this day.
Ah man I LOVE this film! It’s not really for kids, trust me. It’s funny and has lots of cool things to look out for, like the actors from the Dirty Dozen (along with Tommy Lee Jones) voicing the bad toys and the guys from This is Spinal Tap voicing the good toys. It’s pure entertainment, actually quite violent in places (controversial at the time of release) and genuinely hilarious. The effects are brilliant as well, so the film doesn’t appear that dated, even after sixteen years.
7. Fear (1996)
Another film that is just so 90’s. This typical but extra fun thriller stars Mark Wahlberg as the gorgeous new boyfriend of sweet Nicole (Reese Witherspoon) – who is unaware of his tendency to act like a complete and utter psychopath. Now Fear isn’t a masterpiece and it can be a little cliché at times, but it’s exciting, thrilling and extremely enjoyable. Plus Mark Wahlberg looks incredible. SWOOOOON. I hate that gross scene on the ferris wheel though.
6. Falling Down (1993)
I think we can all relate to angry main character Bill Foster, a tired man who’s only aim is getting to his daughter’s birthday party. Being thwarted, threatened and stuck in traffic sends him over the edge and we get to watch in glee as he goes around town Charlie Bronson style. A great role for Douglas and probably Joel Schumacher’s finest ever film.
5. Event Horizon (1997)
Ah, the madness of Event Horizon. Half science, half hell, there is nothing particularly new in this film but it’s so menacing and gross that it’s a personal favourite of mine. Plus you don’t see Sean Pertwee in much and I like him. So they’re stuck out in space (where no-one can hear them scream) in the not-so-distance future aboard Event Horizon – a dark and brooding spacecraft that is just waiting to kill everyone. Scientist Dr Weir (Sam Neill) proceeds to lose every last marble and the gates to hell are opened. Enjoy!
4. The Faculty (1998)
The Faculty is one of those films that when I watch it, I wish there were more around like it. It’s obviously based on The Body Snatchers but what makes it cool is the dark humour and mis-match of teenage clichés (nerd, burnout, queen bee, jock, lesbian, new kid) who have no option but to join forces to fight the aliens who are taking over their teachers and their home town. Another winner from Robert Rodriguez.
3. In the Mouth of Madness (1994)
This is one of John Carpenter’s lesser known films but to horror fans, also one of his best. There is a slight Stephen King feel to the story (even though it’s nothing to do with him) and hey look everyone it’s Sam Neill again. He stars as an broker trying to track down AWOL horror writer Sutter Cane. We can sense from the off the sinister terror that awaits him and it just gets better and better (or worse and worse). It can be a bit ambiguous, but I suggest you enjoy it for what it is – a bloody good, nightmarish horror.
2. Final Cut (1998)
Have you ever wondered what your mates say about you when you’re not around? Well so did the creators of this English film – Dominic Anciano and Ray Burdis. The film begins at the funeral of Jude (Jude Law) as his widow (Sadie Frost) explains to everyone he’s been secretly filming them all for years and they’re going to watch the funny and at times very uncomfortable (and mental) footage now at the wake. Let the festivities begin!
1. Kalifornia (1993)
You know who Brad Pitt is great at playing? A trailer trash, murderous scumbag called Early Grayce. In this movie Early and his nice-but-dim wife (Juliette Lewis) car share with a more hip and trendy couple (David Duchovny and Michelle Forbes) who are traveling to California and writing a book about famous murderers, stopping at the landmarks on the way. The twist in this tale is that they are already traveling with a real-life murderer – the psychopathic Early. Fucking great.