The Rundown: How Are These Movies 20 Years Old Already?

Before we get into this week’s edition of The Rundown, a quick explanation of its impetus since there are bound to be some people out there wondering why I randomly decided to talk about 10 movies that are 20 years old on the second Thursday of October.

Last week I was in Houston, Texas covering UFC 192, where local product 19-year-old Sage Northcutt – a blonde hair, blue-eyed Abercrombie model type who also happens to be a really talented martial artist – was front and center. He called everyone “Sir” and it made me think off all the things that I love that are older than Sage Northcutt and therefore probably foreign to him.

As a massive movie nerd, putting together a list like this of “movies that came out before Sage Northcutt was born” seemed like an easy way to combine two of the things I write about all the time in an amusing, nostalgic way.

The Usual Suspects

Fictional bad guy Keyser Soze is 20 years old. Nuts, right? While several of the principals involved with this film and character – actor Kevin Spacey, director Bryan Singer, writer Christopher McQuarrie – have all gone on to do various other things, this remains (for me) their respective greatest triumphs. Twenty years later, I still love the way this story was told and the way everything came together.

Braveheart

Mel Gibson has fallen off the cliff in recent years (all his own doing), but his portrayal of William Wallace – and the film as a whole – still stands up two decades later. Braveheart took home five Oscars, including Best Picture, and still stands as one of the best executed epics of the last 25 years.

Toy Story

Pixar being awesome is old hat now and we get feature films that are fully computer animated all the time these days, but 20 years ago, Toy Story was the first of its kind and to this day, it remains a really good movie. Buzz Lightyear and Woody have remained recognizable characters all these years later and it will be interesting to see if they return in Toy Story 4, which is in the works with a tentative June 2017 release date.

Heat

Although they were both in The Godfather: Part II, this movie marked the first time Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino every had a scene together on camera and two decades later, Heat continues to earn critical praise and hold cult status with movie fanatics. This is one of the best gangster movies of all-time and arguably Michael Mann’s best work.

Leaving Las Vegas

Nicholas Cage has become a punch-line these days, but I’ll be damned if this wasn’t a terrific performance that rightfully earned the future Ghost Rider the Academy Award for Best Actor. Cage and Elisabeth Shue were captivating together and though there are some tough moments to watch, this is an outstanding film that showed what Cage was capable of before he went all Nic Cage on us.

GoldenEye

With the next Bond film, Spectre, due out next month, it’s crazy to think that 20 years ago, Pierce Brosnan brought 007 back to the big screen after a six-year hiatus with a film that became one of the greatest video games of all time. It also gave us Judi Dench as M and Famke Janssen as a Bond Girl named Xenia Onatopp. God bless, Bond.

Friday

Twenty years later and #ByeFelicia is a thing that happened this year. It was also referenced in one of this year’s biggest films, Straight Outta Compton, which went out of its way to make sure everyone knew Ice Cube wrote Friday. Highly quotable and packing plenty of reference material, it’s crazy to imagine that Craig, Smokey and the rest of these characters hit theatres that long ago.

The Brothers McMullen

Not a huge movie by box office standards, I’m including The Brothers McMullen because (a) it’s one of my favourite movies of all-time and (b) it serves as a starting point for tracing Edward Burns’ career and frankly, I thought it would have been better. There have been some good roles and performances, but if you told me 20 years ago that Barry McMullen would be on Public Morals, I would have been disappointed.

Clueless

You know a movie is old when it gets the send up treatment in a music video, as Amy Heckerling’s spoiled teens in high school flick did last year with Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” video. Clueless added innumerable words and phrases into vernacular and even though many have since faded or been replaced, it’s still a fun flick to get nostalgic with one a year.

Se7en

“What’s in the box? WHAT’S IN THE BOX?!”Given that WWE just used this bit a couple weeks back on Monday Night Raw, I think that tells you everything you need to know about the lasting impact of this Andrew Kevin Walker penned, David Fincher directed gem starring Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Spacey.

E. Spencer Kyte

E. Spencer Kyte

E. Spencer Kyte is a freelance journalist based in Abbotsford, British Columbia, where he lives with his wife and dog. In addition to his work here, he writes about sports for Complex Canada and covers the UFC for various outlets. His mom also still tells him what to do on a regular basis, even though he’s nearly 40. He tweets from @spencerkyte.

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