After someone put together a list of the Top 25 Movies of the 1980s that did not impress me much, I decided to put together my own list. The '80s encompassed my formative high school and college years, so I figured I could find tons of good movies they were leaving out. But after perusing the lists at Boxofficemojo.com I came up with only 52 candidates for my own list. Not as many as I expected. So on a whim I decided to look at movies from the subsequent decades and found a few more in the '90s and a bunch more from the '00s. And so far in the '10s, not even half-way through, I already have a list as long as the one from the previous decade.
So does this mean that movies are getting better?
First understand that my criteria for good movies is simply whether I enjoyed the movie and would be excited about watching it again. So I tend to favor "popcorn" movies more so than heavy, artsy dramas.
So what appears to be happening is that Hollywood is pumping out more movies suited to my particular taste. I like action/adventure movies, sci-fi and fantasy and animated flicks. And since about 2000, those are the films that have been dominating the domestic box office. The Lord of the Rings films, the Harry Potter series, the Marvel Superhero movies and the Pixar/Disney combination have all blossomed during the past decade. Meanwhile, the James Bond franchise is still going strong and is now joined by the Jason Bourne series and the Mission Impossible flicks. D.C. Comics also made a comeback with the new Batman movies. And new animation studios have been competing quite well with Disney giving us the Ice Age and Madagascar franchises as well as Kung Fu Panda, Despicable Me and How to Train Your Dragon.
And the hits just keep coming with more Marvel Superhero movies in the dock, more Pixar and Disney animation movies (on fire now with the breakout success of Frozen) and another Hobbit movie as well.