Kinker Korner’s Top 35 Movies Of 1997 NSFW

Quite the mix in this list as 1997 serves up a real platter of assorted tastes. There’s bound to be something for you here in this list. Enjoy!.

 

 

35. Batman And Robin

Ok this is going to taek some explaining…..First off, it’s an awful, disaster of a movie. So why is it here I hear you ask. Well, I watched this with a bud a few years back and I swear I hadn’t laughed so much in years, we still have our own personal jokes about it to this day. As a youngster I was devastated when it was released with it’s terrible performances from the likes of a ridiculously hammy Uma Thurman, George Clooney constantly smirking his way through his Batman performance and of course Arnie’s incessant puns. One pun I’ve never understood is when he goes “It’s a cold town”…..what is that a pun on?!. Anyway watch it with friends, you’ll have a blast and what is entertainment? If it makes you laugh and have fun and brings happiness then it’s doing it”s job, however unintentional. Good soundtrack too.

Best Bit- The hockey team from hell

 

34. Alien Resurrection

Another one that disappointed me upon release but grew on me over time. It’s still not up to the standards of the first 3 (yes I include Alien 3) but there’s a lot of entertainment to be found if you view it as a stand alone and don’t judge it based on the rest of the franchise. It was written by up and comer Joss Whedon who expressed extreme dissatisfaction with the movie as he had written a more light hearted movie and director Jean-Pierre Jeunet wanted to go dark so there’s a confused tone. Again if you switch your brain off and don’t think of the plot holes and inconsistencies you can find enjoyment in the set pieces.

Best Bit- Underwater chase

 

33. Conspiracy Theory

Mel Gibson plays a man obsessed with conspiracy theories who writes a newsletter for other theorists. He starts getting harassed and attacked by government officials but the problem is he doesn’t know which of the theories he printed has got him into trouble. Incredibly relevant in today’s culture with youtube commentators ruining conspiracies for everyone as even if you believe some of the the big ones from over the years (I do) these youtubers are just idiots who are cashing in on a gullible public. A lot of them have helped the rise of the right wing and neo nazi resurgence. My theory is they are pricks……I know, controversial.

Best Bit- LSD interrogation

 

32. Spawn

Based on the Todd Mcfarlane comics of the same name, this adaptation was not well received on release but as a kid I loved it. It hasn’t aged particularly well as it’s heavy on cgi which was in it’s infancy at the time but Michael Jai White is good as Spawn and John Leguizamo is effective as The Violator.. I didn’t even know it was him until ages after having seen it. The HBO animated series is better though.

Best Bit- Crashing the party

 

31. Mimic

The first Hollywood movie from the best director of this era Guillermo Del Toro is a solid monster horror movie about a genetically engineered insect that can take on the properties of what it kills. It has many of the characteristics that Del Toro’s directing style would become known for and it’s clear he had his style and vision down from the beginning.

Best Bit- Subway

 

30. Wishmaster

I remember renting this with my pal Steve and I’d been hyped about it for a while due to the name Wes Craven being involved. Turns out he was just the executive producer and really didn’t have anything to do with it. Oh well, it’s still a lot of cheesy fun directed by practical effects wizard Robert Kurtzman. It’s about an evil djinn who grants wishes but with a twist that kills the benefactor. Some inventive kills and a a barrel load of cameos from horror legends make this a fun time.

Best Bit- Wishing for cancer

 

29. Liar Liar

This was a big hit with people my age, my parents loved it too. It’s a warm hearted tale about a lawyer who spends his life lying, including constantly letting his son down. His son wish that his dad couldn’t lie anymore comes true and that forms the basis of all the comedy as he has to tell the truth no matter how hard he tries to lie. It’s a good vehicle for Carrey’s wacky physical comedy.

Best Bit- “I CAN’T LIE”

 

28. Boogie Nights

Despite starring Mark Wahlberg this is a strong movie from Paul Thomas Anderson that looks at the 1970s and 80s porn scene in LA. I’ve always found Wahlberg to be monumentally overrated as an actor and even in this I don’t really get the mad hype he got but it is a decent performance and the best I’ve seen from him. There’s a great cast of characters played by the likes of John C. Reilly, Heather Graham, Burt Reynolds and William H. Macy.

Best Bit- Cheating wife

 

27. Anastasia

Featuring the voice talents of Meg Ryan, Hank Azaria, Kelsey Grammar, John Cusack and more, this Disney feature tells a tale based on the Russian legend of the Grand Duchess who disappeared, avoiding her execution. Jeez these mid 90s Disney movies sure take their inspiration from dark places. Obviously due to the awful inspiration, the movie caused controversy from people who felt that it trivialised what Boris Yeltsin described as “One of the most shameful pages of Russian history”. Well….if you can get past that then it’s a whimsical movie with beautiful animation and it’s entertaining.

Best Bit- Sleepwalking

 

26. Cop Land

After a string a duds, Stallone returned to form with this nuanced performance as a sheriff in a New Jersey town overrun with corrupt cops. A supporting cast of Harvey Keitel, Ray Liotta, Robert Patrick and Robert De Niro help flesh this thriller out and everyone brings a great performance. Stallone is a weird one, he can go from goofy action hero to proper respected drama movie in the blink of an eye. It’s a good trait to have.

Best Bit- “You people are all the same”

 

25. Starship Troopers

This was seen as a return to form for Dutch director Paul Verhoeven after the critical and commercial flop that was Showgirls. Nonsense I say as Showgirls was a damn masterpiece. Here we have all of Verhoeven’s trademark macho action and satire as a group of soldiers take on invading insect like aliens. Great effects that still hold up well today.

Best Bit- First attack

 

24.Con Air

If I ever felt guilty for liking something this would be a guilty pleasure. Nic Cage is as manic as he often is as the jailbird about to be released. He’s asked to go undercover and extract information from the other extremely dangerous criminals played by Ving Rhames, Danny Trejo and the most notorious 2Cyrus The Virus” played by John Malkovich. Things go south quickly though and a thrill ride ensues. It’s big dumb fun and a lot of it.

Best Bit- “He’s got the whole world in his hands”

 

23. Funny Games

Austrian film maker Michael Haneke’s home invasion thriller is an incredibly dark and twisted piece of cinema. A family is held in their own home by two men who torture them with sick games with no apparent purpose. Haneke remade the film for an American audience ten years later with Naomi Watts in the lead role .

Best Bit- Rewind

 

22. Men In Black

A massive sci fi comedy hit that was a pop culture behemoth with the theme song being huge and the a cartoon series coming from it. Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones play two agents from a secret organization that deal with extraterrestrials and keep it all a secret from the unsuspecting public. It’s a lot of fun and the effects from Rick Baker are great as always.

Best Bit- Meeting Jeebs

 

21. Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery

Jeez remember when this was absolutely everywhere?. Fancy dress outfits, endless parodies and references on tv and film. Mike Myer’s pitch perfect parody of the James Bond series and the swinging 60s is hilarious and he’s very likeable as the bumbling, dancing sex obsessed Powers. He also plays the main villain Dr Evil who is also a great creation, aping much of Donald Pleasence’s portrayal of Stavro Blofeld. Endlessly quotable and some very funny performances.

Best Bit- Steamroller

 

20. Donnie Brasco

In all honesty when I saw this movie I was kind of all gangster’d out, especially Al Pacino gangster’d out.  So although I really enjoyed it and can understand why many people have it down as one of the best in the genre it just came across as a good movie to me and not much more. I sound negative but obviously I liked the movie a fair bit and it’s based on a true story of an undercover cop played by Depp going undercover in the mob but finds himself developing relationships.

Best Bit-  “You think I’m a rat?”

 

 

 

19. Once Upon A Time In China & America

Despite the terrible title it’s actually a really fun addition to the Once Upon A Time series that acts as a martial arts western. Not too many of them out there and it certainly shows John Wayne how to make an exciting fight scene. Jet Li is stunning as always with great choreography from Sammo Hung.

Best Bit- Bar fight

 

18. Lost Highway

David Lynch doing what David Lynch does. Completely bizarre, nonsensical but utterly captivating storytelling. Bill Pullman plays a man accused of killing his girlfriend who then inexplicably turns into a younger and different man while in his jail cell. It’s surrealist cinema done in a way that the enigmatic director revels in.

Best Bit- The mystery man

 

17. Good Will Hunting

The script that gave young Matt Damon and Ben Affleck an Academy award. It follows Will Hunting played by Damon who is a genius intellect who is working as a labourer where many feel he is wasted. He eventually begins studying advanced mathematics with a revere professor played by Robin Williams. A great and emotional look at relationships, life and the different turns it can take.

Best Bit- “The best part of my day”

 

16. Event Horizon

Along with Mortal Kombat this is Paul W. S Anderson’s best work in my eyes and a really solid sci fi horror starring Sam Neil and Laurence Fishburne. A space ship that has been missing for years suddenly returns to orbit and a crew are sent to investigate it. They discover that there had been experiments on board opening portals that let evil on board. It’s hinted that the ship has been to hell. Predictably….things don’t go well for the crew.

Best Bit- No oxygen

 

15. Hercules

Another classic musical animated epic from the renaissance era of Disney with a cast featuring Danny De Vito and James Woods among others. It tells the tale from the Greek myth of Hercules (obviously) and his father Zeus.It’s energetic, fun, has a good villain and enthusiastic voice actors. Goof fun all round.

Best Bit- Meeting Hades

 

14. Face/Off

Ahhh good old John Woo pops up with one of the most insane high concept movies of the 90s. Nic Cage plays a terrorist and John Travolta plays an FBI agent out to get him. The difference here is that they both assume each other’s identity by having extensive facial surgery. Yes it’s nonsense but I’ll be damned if it isn’t insanely entertaining nonsense.

Best Bit- The church

 

13.Hana-Bi aka Fireworks

Beat Takeshi directs and stars in this crime drama about a retired cop who looks after his sick wife. Being a Takeshi film it obviously contains story elements about the Yakuza and more importantly his long time collaborator Joe Hisaishi does the score. The international critical acclaim of the movie helped him become more accepted in his native Japan where he struggled to be taken seriously as a film maker for years. It’s beautiful and poetic in it’s brutality and Hisaishi’s score is a thing of absolute gorgeousness.

Best Bit- The ending

 

12. Scream 2

Wes Craven’s follow up to the smash hit Scream is more meta goodness that pays heavy homage to horror in general, poking fun at sequels and how they play out.  Most of the surviving members of the cast return and some new faces are brought in and it’s a great cast of young actors in this gorier sequel. Another in the franchise that is considered to be the saviour of 90s horror.

Best Bit- The opening

 

11.Chasing Amy

Kevin Smith’s follow up to Mallrats is a far more personal and emotional movie that some found lacking in laughs but it connected with me and I found it’s overall theme of one mistake setting off a chain that can ruin relationships very affecting. In between the touching moments there obviously is Smith’s trademark toilet humour from Jay and Silent Bob and Jason lee’s character and plenty of jokes about comic book culture from a time where it wasn’t cool to be into them.

Best Bit- Conversation in the car

 

10. Mr Nice Guy

The second appearance of Sammo Hug as a director on this list sees him teaming up with Jackie Chan. Hong Kong royalty right there. Chan plays a tv chef who unintentionally  becomes embroiled in a drug deal gone bad between rival gangs. The usual stunning Chan choreography of fitting through tight spaces and ingeniously making use of props in his fights come into play in a really entertaining and funny martial arts movie.

best Bit- The chase

 

 

9. The Fifth Element

Well, as we hear the news of Valerian being a massive flop for Luc Besson, let’s look back to a happier time. Besson is a director I admire as he tries different things and isn’t tied down to cultural trends. I’ve yet to see Valerian but the casting had me a little baffled so maybe that hurt it I don’t know. The Fifth Element is a movie I went to the cinema with friends to see and there’s nothing better when a brand new IP comes along and takes you into a whole new world with exotic and strange characters you’ve never seen before and that’s exactly what we get here. Bruce Willis is the futuristic taxi driver and Mila Jovovich plays a mysterious woman falls into his cab. Willis joins her to help save the earth by finding the four essential stones that protect the earth. With great supporting performances from Gary Oldman and Chris Tucker. The blue lady singing made me piss myself laughing though, I nearly got sent out of the cinema.

Best Bit- Saving the world

 

 

8. Amistad

Steven Spielberg’s account of the mutiny in 1839 of a group of slaved being transferred to America after their capture. A deeply affecting and anger inducing movie depicting a disgusting era in history and is one of Spielberg’s most overlooked movies. Fantastic performances all round and a beautiful score from John Williams.

Best Bit- The mutiny

 

7. The Game

Hot off the critical lauding of Se7en big things were expected from David Fincher and although it isn’t nearly as revered and remembered as Se7en it’s still a taught, interesting film that keeps you guessing all the time. A wealthy and bored banker is told about a company that offers a game to play that enriches you life. After he accepts strange things start happening and he can’t tell which parts of his life are part of the game and what is real. Michael  Douglas is great in the lead but unlike Se7ven there isn’t a likeable protagonist so that hurts it a little

Best Bit- Welcome home

 

6.Jackie Brown

Tarantino’s ode to the blaxploitation movie (without being too focused on the exploitation part) starring the sexy queen of the genre Pam Grier (who was nearing 50 in this film!). As often with his movies he brought actors he loved from his youth back from faltering careers and gave them mainstream exposure and Grier felt the affects of this. It’s based on the novel Rum Punch by Elmore Leonard and it’s still the only Tarantino movie that he’s adapted from another person’s work. Tarantino’s most underappreciated work, the dialogue is top league.

Best Bit- Jackie vs Ordell

 

5. Orgazmo

Trey Parker’s second movie (along with Matt Stone) is a laugh out loud comedy about a Mormon who is desperate for money and gets roped into making porn movies with the aide of a….ahem….stunt cock. Between the hilarious theme song performed by Matt and Trey’s band DVDA to the sex scene with the morbidly obese Tina Rex it’s endlessly quotable and absolutely hilarious.

Best Bit- Tina Rex

 

4. As Good As It Gets

James L. Brooks, the main brain and heart behind the best years of The Simpsons nails it with in my opinion his best movie. A beautiful comedy with heart crushingly real moments and a real soul to it. It centres on three main characters,  Jack Nicholson plays a novelist with OCD, Helen Hunt plays a single mother struggling to bring up her constantly ill son and Greg Kinnear plays a gay artist who all live in the same building. Hunt and Nicholson won the Acedemy awards for best actor and actress which is quite the achievement for a comedy.

Best Bit- The dinner date

 

 

3. Princess Mononoke

This poster is obviously for the English language release but this is a Studio Ghibli classic from Japan and what an epic it is. Written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki who often heavily features conservationist themes in his movies went full out with this one about a half wolf half human a princess from centuries ago and her part in a war between the gods of the forest and the humans who are destroying their resources.It’s strongest point is that there’s no real true villain because the humans are just trying to survive but it’s encroaching on nature so a war is waged.  It’s beautiful, surprisingly violent, emotional and has that Ghibli charm. ……and Joe Hisaishi does the score…MY MAN.

Best Bit- The forest comes to life

 

2. L.A Confidential

Curtis Hanson’s fantastic noir thriller with an all star cast is one of the best in the genre. Incredibly tight pacing and tense storytelling that keeps the viewer guessing at all times. A gut punching twist that sends everything crumbling down and some truly stellar performances from the likes of Kevin Spacey, Kim Basinger and Guy Pearce make it an all star epic with that classic noir aesthetic that brings the bright lights and seedy underbelly of L.A to life.

Best Bit- “Rollo Tomasi”

 

1. Perfect Blue

If you are an animation fan and don’t know the work of Satoshi Kon then I implore you to dive into his work. Be warned though, his debut feature Perfect Blue is an incredibly disturbing thriller/horror about a young pop idol who parlays into an acting career and is being followed by a stalker. At the same time she starts to experience hallucinations and suffers a mental breakdown. The animation differs from anime of the time in that the features aren’t exaggerated and most of the characters are unattractive and dull unless they are actors or singers. It’s a staggeringly good achievement in pacing, storytelling and animated horror. Kon succumbed to cancer in 2010 sadly but the more people who know and celebrate his work the better.

Best Bit- The screwdriver

 

There we go then, crawling ever nearer to the end of the decade. Catch me here next time and until then get me @swing_kinker

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