Groundhog DayClerksSinglesReality Bites.  The films of my college days haven’t all aged gracefully (lookin’ at you, Clueless), but they’re memorable nonetheless.  The question of which is the greatest nineties movie, though, is probably going to be one of perspective, since the decade gave us The Big Lebowski, Good Will Hunting, and even Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze, leading to today’s entirely subjective and highly suspect query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) is torn between my sentimental favorites and more objective questions of quality, but could always split the difference with ‘Fargo’, asking: What film is the GREATEST nineties movie of them all?


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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Daniel Langsdale on

    I spent a good chunk of the 90s doing weekly grocery shopping by walking to a mall with both a movie theater and a grocery store. I’d take in a “twilight” show – cheaper than a matinee – buy groceries & walk home. The point is, I took in a lot of movies in the 90s.

    The movie that probably surprised and moved me the most was Spitfire Grill. It’s not a blockbuster, not a big splash studio drama. It’s a story about grief and guilt and trust and forgiveness, and more people should see it. Just have some tissue handy when you watch it, because it has a habit of making the air dusty and you’ll probably get something in your eye.

    If you want something iconically recognized from the 90s, I’ll say Shawshank Redemption is the ‘greatest,’ but for me Spitfire Grill edges it out simply because it gave me something unexpected at the time, and there is something timeless in its telling.

  2. Thinking about the 80s movie question had me thinking about what contitutes the “greatest” movie of a decade. Which is sorta the reason i chose Big Trouble In Little China, a movie that almost encapsulated the 80s in every regard.

    Is it something that captures the technical zeitgeist of the 90s like The Matrix or T2? Is it something that encapsulates the aesthetic and fashion like Mallrats or Reality Bites? Is it something culturally significant like Shawshank or Schindler’s List? Is it just something that covers almost all the bases like Jurassic Park?

    I realize that’s not an answer. Jurassic Park, i guess? I saw it in 6th grade and that seemed like the turning point from watching exclusively “kids movies” to watching more “adult” movies….

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