The problem with making a decade-spanning "Best of" list of any kind is that, after enough time has passed, memory begins to corrupt reality. Guess that applies to everything, really. Life's weird, huh? Anyway, once I began consciously considering which movies do and do not merit inclusion on my Best Films of the Decade list, I found myself struggling mightily to separate actual films from my mind's idea of them.
For example, I might not have even considered including Amélie if I hadn't had the opportunity to re-watch it recently. As it turned out, Amélie managed to find its way into my Top 15 (and, as such, shall not be found listed below)! It works both ways, of course. There are almost certainly some movies that dug themselves so deeply and warmly into my brain/heart that despite their being perhaps less-deserving than other films, they still made the cut. In any event, as much as I would love to revisit each and every film on my "short" list, I just don't have that kind of time. Maybe in 2020...
[For the record: the year listed next to the film's title does not necessarily reflect the film's year of production. Rather, the year listed indicates either the year of a film's official US release, or--in the rare case that I am able to see a film prior to its US release--the year in which I first viewed the film. It's the way I've always done it; I don't intend to stop now.]
The 37 great films which all just barely missed the Top 25 and are thus insultingly relegated to a lowly, alphabetically-organized "Honorable Mentions" list are:
- Amores Perros (2001) ...Dir. Alejandro González Iñárritu
- Bowling for Columbine (2002) ...Dir. Michael Moore
- The Bridge (2006) ...Dir. Eric Steel
- Casino Royale (2006) ...Dir. Martin Campbell
- The Corporation (2004) ...Dir. Mark Achbar & Jennifer Abbott
- The Departed (2006) ...Dir. Martin Scorsese
- Donnie Darko (2001) ...Dir. Richard Kelly
- Gerry (2003) ...Dir. Gus Van Sant
- Grizzly Man (2005) ...Dir. Werner Herzog
- Half Nelson (2006) ...Dir. Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) ...Dir. Mike Newell
- i ♥ huckabees (2004) ...Dir. David O. Russell
- Idiocracy (2006) ...Dir. Mike Judge
- Iraq in Fragments (2007) ...Dir. James Longley
- I Served the King of England (2008) ...Dir. Jiří Menzel--This one surprises even me. Came out of nowhere.
- Jonestown: the Life and Death of Peoples’ Temple (2006) ...Dir. Stanley Nelson
- Junebug (2005) ....Dir. Phil Morrison
- Knocked Up (2007) ...Dir. Judd Apatow
- Kurt Cobain: About a Son (2007) ...Dir. AJ Schnack
- Life in Loops: a Megacities RMX (2007) ...Dir. Timo Novotny
- Memento (2001) ...Dir. Christopher Nolan
- Mulholland Drive (2001) ...Dir. David Lynch
- Nobody Knows (2005) ...Dir. Kore-eda Hirokazu
- O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000) ...Dir. Joel [& Ethan] Coen
- Paprika (2007) ...Dir. Satoshi Kon
- Paradise Now (2005) ...Dir. Hany Abu-Assad
- Paris, Je t’aime (2007) ...Multiple directors
- The Proposition (2006) ...Dir. John Hillcoat
- Punch-Drunk Love (2002) ...Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson--Magnolia would have been, at worst, #3 on my Decade list if it hadn't missed the 2000s by less than one week.
- Sin City (2005) ...Dir. Frank Miller & Robert Rodriguez
- Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring (2004) ...Dir. Kim Ki-duk
- Super Troopers (2002) ...Dir. Jay Chandrasekhar
- Sympathy for Lady Vengeance (2006) ...Dir. Park Chan-wook
- Talk to Her (2002) ...Dir. Pedro Almodóvar
- Traffic (2000) ...Dir. Steven Soderbergh
- Zodiac (2007) ...Dir. David Fincher
Stay tuned for the big reveal of my Top 25 Films of the Decade! Coming...SOON.