With the year and decade drawing to a close, all sorts of lists are starting to pop up: the top 10 this, the best 10 that, and so on. I try to keep a level head about all of these, knowing that nearly all of these rankings are wildly subjective. Just because someone says that Britney Spears is the top recording artist of the decade does not mean I must go out and buy her albums.
It becomes more of a challenge to stay cool when it comes to movies. Since I am a believer that movies are the great art form of our time (a subjective assessment in and of itself), I take editorializing about cinema much more seriously.
So it figures that just as I had decided not to pay attention to the pop-culture rankings showing up everywhere, I saw Slate magazine compiling its own list of the top 10 movies of the decade. Of course, my neck hairs stood on end upon reading it.
“Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind at #1? I didn’t even make it to the end of that DVD before ejecting it and sending it back!”
Wouldn’t it also figure that many of Slate’s top contenders are movies that I consider among the worst films I’ve ever seen. I won’t give a rundown of the exact movies I’m referring to, as the point of my column is to talk about movies you should see, not ones you shouldn’t.
To keep things in perspective, I’ve decided to think of the “Forrest Gump lesson". You see, the first time I saw Forrest Gump was while sitting in a 737 with a headache and a bad set of earphones. I gave the movie a one-star-out-of-five ranking, and I couldn’t believe that it won the Oscar for Best Picture that year.
Fifteen years later, I decided to give it another try. Wonder of wonders, I rented Forrest Gump a few months ago and enjoyed it, this time giving it five stars. What a difference time and circumstance can make.
I’m not holding my breath thinking that I will ever become a fan of any of Slate’s top contenders for movie of the decade, but who knows?