Top 5… Films from 2004

While there was no phenomenally amazing film from 2004, there were a lot of quality films that deserve to be seen.

5. Downfall

The film that has since spawned a thousand Hitler rant parodies is actually an incredibly powerful and moving account of the last days of Hitler’s life. Hiding in a bunker as enemy troops get closer and closer, Hitler and his closest advisors start to crumble and implode. Told from the perspective of one of his staff, this is one of the best World War 2 films ever made.

4. Kill Bill: Vol. 2

Quentin Tarantino had created a samurai masterpiece when he unleashed Kill Bill: Vol. 1 onto our screens but could he keep the momentum going into the conclusion? Thankfully the answer was yes! Moving on from Vivica A Fox and Lucy Liu to Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah and David Carradine was the first good move but actually turning The Bride from a vehicle of unstoppable mayhem into a real person by the end was the greatest achievement.

3. Million Dollar Baby

Clint Eastwood is a better director than he ever was an actor. Considering that he is a very good actor goes to show how good a director he has become. In this Oscar winner he plays a burnt out gym owner who coaches a persistent female boxer from a nobody to the verge of greatness. Superbly acted and brilliantly written. It’s not the film you expect it to be, I promise!

2. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter finally grew up in this third (and in my opinion best) instalment. This is the film that brought proper scares, great acting, revelations, action and a brilliantly constructed story. It was helped by being directed by Alfonso Cuarón who really knows how to frame and construct a scene for the best effect. This was the Harry Potter watermark that all the other films were measured against.

1. Garden State

I clearly remember the first time I watched this small indie film starring, written and directed by Zach Braff from Scrubs. I remember laughing, crying and even falling in love with Natalie Portman. A young man returns to his home town for his mothers funeral and meets up with all his friends for the first time in a decade. But that really doesn’t come to sum up the excellent movie. This is a film I can watch over and over again and love it every time.

Honourable Mentions

  • Super Size Me – The documentary that stopped me having fast food ever again
  • Mean Creek – Some kids go on a boat trip with tragic consequences
  • Spider-Man 2 – The best Spider-man film by far
  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – Crazy, beautiful and sad all at the same time
  • The Incredibles – One of the best Pixar movies
  • Collateral – Tom Cruise as a bad guy? Combine that with Michael Mann and you have a good film!
  • The Aviator – Watching DiCaprio slowly go insane is mesmerising
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