1999

I am convinced that 1999 was one of the best years in film. I didn’t notice this until one night when I was looking through my DVD collection and came upon The Matrix, a movie about a reality within a reality. Flipping the box, I came upon the date and remembered Fight Club came out that same year. This led me also to note American Beauty and Magnolia released that year, too.

Brad Pitt in Fight Club

Brad Pitt in Fight Club

I have a few minutes, grab a chair, and let’s talk movies for Freedom Friday.

Did you know The Mummy and Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace came out in 1999? Both mega-blockbusters took in just under $1.5 Billion. That’s a lot of money, especially for back then.

What thrills me, though, is not the blockbusters, but the movies that have become annual events here at my home. Movies like Drop Dead Gorgeous, Analyze This, and Payback get a yearly viewing from me. Why? They’re fun movies! Whenever I’m bored, which happens more often than you think, I grab one of these movies, ease into my couch and let the story carry me away. I’m like a little kid wanting to watch the same movie again, even after having watched it twice already in a row. I never tire of these.

The Matrix

The Matrix

Anyway, about 1999—the world held its breath wondering if the lights would go out because of that supposed nasty Y2K bug that would have otherwise crippled North America’s very capable power grid. Of course, Y2K came and went with not even so much as a whimper. But the movies remained and the stories tempted their audience to be different. The majority of films imposed the message on us that we humans are unique, different, and filled with hope, and that we should go ahead and fulfill our dreams.

Here is a list of movies that hit theaters that year and why I feel they merit more than an once-in-a-lifetime viewing:

JanuaryThe Thin Red Line: A military movie gone crazy. So many cameos hit the film that I can hardly keep up including George Clooney, John Travolta and John Cusack.
FebruaryPayback: Mel Gibson as the bad guy out to settle a score. Notable mentions go to October Sky, Office Space and 8mm.
MarchAnalyze This: Robert De Niro spoofing his mob boss roles from the past. Hilarious. Notable mentions go to Cruel Intentions, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and The Matrix, of course.
AprilGo: One drug deal, three different points of view. Incredible.
MayThe Mummy: A mummy comes back to life and eats people’s body parts. Sounds like a modern zombie movie. Notable mentions go to Election, and Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace.
JuneTarzan: Disney’s animated version. Great song by Phil Collins.
JulyDrop Dead Gorgeous: A mockumentary about teen beauty pageants. Notable mentions go to American Pie and The Blair Witch Project.
AugustThe Sixth Sense: The kid sees dead people. Scary as heckfire. Notable mentions go to Dick and The Iron Giant.
SeptemberAmerican Beauty: Kevin Spacey has a midlife meltdown. Awesome! Notable mention goes to Double Jeopardy.
OctoberFight Club: Don’t talk about Fight Club. Notable mentions go to Mystery, Alaska, Three Kings, and Bringing Out the Dead.
NovemberDogma: A loophole in Catholic dogma may undo creation. Hey, anything with George Carlin is funny. Notable mentions go to The Bone Collector, The Insider, Sleepy Hollow and Toy Story 2. You didn’t really think I was going to forget this one, did you?
DecemberMagnolia: Multiple plotlines that all intertwine somehow. Notable mentions go to The Green Mile and Man on the Moon.

Quite a list, isn’t it? Can you believe these great movies came out all in one year? I suppose the fear of the Y2K bug consuming civilization made for a situation where creative juices flowed freely.

Speaking of which, I have to head off. I think later tonight I’ll pop in Fight Club and have Jack’s complete lack of surprise engulf me.

RANGER MARTIN AND THE ALIEN INVASION, on sale October 21.

What 1999 movie do you remember as the one you cannot forget?

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24 Comments

  1. I saw “Analyze This” while I was living in France. For some reason the French retitled it “Mafia Blues”

    Reply
  2. that is quite a list! I didn’t realize that they all came out that year

    Reply
  3. Quite a year. Makes me want to go out and check if there were any other ‘great years.’ An amazing albeit little known film called Rosetta by the Belgian Dardenne brothers came out in 1999, although there was nothing hopeful about it!
    Chris

    Reply
  4. I loved The Mummy and Sixth Sense. Those top my list, but there are many great movies there. Great list!

    Reply
  5. Great post and a fantastic list.

    For me Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo deserves special mention for paving the way for Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo

    Reply
  6. So Hollywood was really taking that Y2K thing seriously haha 😀

    Reply
  7. Wow! That is quite a lineup! I’ve only seen Tarzan and Toy Story 2…wait a minute, in 1999 I had a four year old and 3 two year olds. I guess that’s the reason.

    Thanks for sharing, Becky!

    Reply
  8. The Mummy tops the list easily – great series of movies!

    Reply
  9. Reblogged this on Becky Flade Author and commented:
    My oldest, and at the time only daughter, was just six years old and I was a sparkly twenty-three in 1999. Too young to appreciate how incredible all these movies really were despite the fact I saw nearly all of them. Time to sit back with a kick-ass movie night and the maturity to truly enjoy it!

    Reply
  10. In 1000, if you Googled my name Michael Hyatt, you got some guy trying to sell “How to survive Y2K” books. Even had the same middle initial. Wish I could have cashed in on that. 🙂

    Reply
  11. Wow, American Beauty and Fight Club are already 15 years old – I’m feeling old!

    Reply
  12. I reposted this great blog on my Facebook, just in time for movie night! Thanks, Jack.

    Reply
  13. American Beauty, Fight Club and Man on the Moon….1999 was truly a great vintage for films….

    Reply
  14. Excellent article, The Matrix is one of my favourite films. I saw it in the cinema after Episode I and it blew the Stars Wars prequel away. But, yes, 1999 was a vintage film year indeed.

    Reply
  15. That really was a good year. I’d put ‘The Matrix’ at the top of my list, but I kind of ignore the other two movies to preserve the memory of the first. ‘Office Space’ is up there too. Some others:

    South Park the Movie, Mystery Men, Pokemon, and Galaxy Quest. Wow. It really was a good year.

    Reply
  16. I think the Mummy tops my list. I noted he had few bandages. Johnson and Johnson did not have the concession stand. The mouth extensions got me but now it is old hat. I liked the characters especially her brother who is comic relief. Not a big fan of the sequels. They lost the edge. But the first was really good.

    Reply
  17. Thanks so much for the honorable mention, Katie! 🙂

    Reply
  18. Thanks very much for the mention!

    Reply
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