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Kino Korner December 2, 2005
 
Kino Kwikeez
By Alex Shifrin Browse author Email
 
 

This issue, as a celebration of the nineties, we've decided to review some of the top film selections from that decade. So, in lieu of actually bothering with a proper introduction because we left this whole thing till the last minute, and it's almost press time, we'll just jump straight into it:

Goodfellas (1990)

Quite simply, it's the greatest gangster film ever. Some pedantic cinephiles out there may suggest that The Godfather has laid claim to this title, however, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, regardless of how wrong it may be. This film tells the story of Henry Hill, a lifelong gangster turned informer. Goodfellas brings out the non-glamorous grime and shock that other films from this genre were simply unable to capture. Furthermore, Pesci is the quintessential fucking nutcase, never to play as glorious a role as he did in this film. No, not even in Casino.

Highway 61 (1991)

A wacky Canadian comedy as only the Canadians know how to do it. A very impressionable barber from a small Canadian town meets an American girl, who convinces him to transport her dead brother's narcotics stuffed body to New Orleans. Hot on their tail is Satan, who earns his keep by visiting bingo parlors and has apparently laid claim on the deceased's soul. Not to be missed.

Reservoir Dogs (1992)

Quentin Tarrantino owned 90s pop culture. It's difficult to say whether this film ushered in the return of the 1970s, in the 1990s, or whether it mirrored this trend. However, after the release of Reservoir Dogs, the whole of America went out to purchase TimeLife's Sounds of the Seventies compilation.

Army Of Darkness (1993)

One of the last remaining great fantasy adventure films that didn't use CGI animation. The other month, we decided to watch Ferris Bueller's Day Off just to see if it still held any relevance or humor. It didn't. Army of Darkness does not have this problem. Not unlike a nice plate of meatloaf and mashed potatoes from the Diner in January, this film will not fail to produce a warm feeling every time you watch it. If anything, watch it just for that bit where Ash asks his evil clone, "Hey, what's that on your face?"

Pulp Fiction (1994)

Pulp Fiction is the film that ensured Tarrantino never had to write or direct a good film ever again. And he didn't. In hindsight, hemlock was the next logical step for Quentin after Pulp Fiction hit the box office. Perhaps someone will randomly kick his ass a la Moby, forcing him to start feeding us, the movie going public, with the choice dishes that we know he can serve up.

Welcome To The Dollhouse (1995)

As the producers so aptly described this film, Dawn Wiener is a middle child, in middle school, in middle America. Welcome to the Dollhouse is Tod Solondz's masterpiece about the quintessential marginalized child. It will leave you squirming with agony -- as Dawn tries hard to find a place in her school and family life, competing with a precious younger sister and a brainy older brother, she repeatedly discovers the bleakness of her existence.

Trainspotting (1996)

Heroin was never so cool. Inspired entire droves of kids to talk incomprehensible English, and straddle needle induced death, right up until ecstasy and cocaine became the drug du jour in the early 2000s. Reintroduced the notion, alongside with Pulp Fiction, that soundtracks can resurrect dead rock legends to entirely new generations.

In The Company Of Men (1997)

If you've ever wanted to hate a story's protagonist, but haven't found a film able to truly present a morally loathsome enough individual, look no further than In the Company of Men. In this tale, two traveling salesmen decide to play with a stuttering, cripple woman's fragile emotions by seeing who can make her fall in love with them first, in order to then break her heart. Why, you ask? Well, because they can. This film will stay with you for a long time.

The Big Lebowski (1998)

This films plays on so many levels, from the Coen Brothers' ingenious metaphors right through to Saturday Night Live-esque one liners that your annoying co-worker continues to employ every time you pass him in the hallway. "Nobody fucks with the Jesus, man." God damn it man, shut your fucking mouth, ok? I'm sick of having to hear you repeat that line over and over. Get your own sense of humor, you soulless idiot. Fuck.

Office Space (1999)

Released at the height of the Internet ponzai scheme, Office Space did an uncannily accurate take on that generation of recent graduates who were sucked into a dead career path by the irresponsible investments of venture capitalists and their equally irresponsible investment recipients. This film tells the story of three guys who work at an IT company, aren't really sure what they're doing there, but know that they need to get the fuck out. Anyone who worked in an office in the late 90s should see this film.

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