Top 10 Movies of 1995

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Top 10 Movies of 1995

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
Script Written by Radina Papukchieva.

For many film critics, this was one of the best years in cinema. Join http://www.WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Movies of 1995. For this list, we've looked at the lasting cult status of some of the biggest hits of the year in question, as well as the films that were loved by critics and audiences. Some hold up nicely over time, others maybe not so much. Either way, sit back and enjoy this blast from the past.

Special thanks to our users mattwatchmojo, jwiking62, Andrew A. Dennison, TheDude, JakeMaringoni, Raymond Leduc and Felipe Herrera for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
Transcript

Top 10 Movies of 1995


For many film critics, this was one of the best years in cinema. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 movies of 1995.

For this list, we’ve looked at the lasting cult status of some of the biggest hits of the year in question, as well as the films that were loved by critics and audiences. Some hold up nicely over time, others maybe not so much. Either way, sit back and enjoy this blast from the past.

#10: “Leaving Las Vegas” (1995)

In this romantic drama based on a semi-autobiographical novel by John O’Brien, Nicolas Cage plays a screenwriter who is disenchanted with his job and with his life. Suffering from alcoholism, he decides to leave everything behind and go to Las Vegas to drink himself to death. While there he befriends a prostitute, played by Elisabeth Shue. Both actors received Oscar nominations for their excellent portrayals of two adults running out of luck, and who find each other at the worst of times. Critically and commercially successful, “Leaving Las Vegas” earned Cage both an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his role, which remains one of his most memorable performances to date.

#9: “GoldenEye” (1995)

Whenever a new actor is blessed with the opportunity to play James Bond, expectations are high. In this 17th installment of the popular franchise, we are introduced for the first time to Pierce Brosnan as agent 007. It was also the first Bond movie to come out after the end of the Cold War, which provided ample plot material for the film. “Goldeneye” was a huge success with audiences and critics alike and many praised Brosnan as a much better Bond than his predecessor, Timothy Dalton. And who can forget the awesome theme song by Tina Turner that accompanied the spy flick?

#8: “Dead Man Walking” (1995)

This crime drama was directed by actor Tim Robbins, and adapted from the book by Sister Helen Prejean (prih-zhohn). Starring Sean Penn as a criminal on death row for the murder of two teenagers, and Susan Sarandon as a nun who becomes his spiritual adviser, “Dead Man Walking” sparked a conversation about the ethics of the death penalty. Sarandon and Penn give powerful performances that flesh out this profoundly humane story that separates sinner from sin, with the actress deservedly taking home the Best Actress Oscar.

#7: “Se7en” (1995)

If our previous entry asked us to question our morality, then this next one will turn all that talk on its head. When two detectives played by Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt find themselves trailing a series of bizarre religiously-charged murders, they are ultimately on the path to uncover the deranged psyche of a very meticulous killer. Instead of giving us the traditional cop genre, director David Fincher uses mythology and literature as guiding clues for the audience. The psychological thriller also marked Fincher’s return to form after the flop that was “Alien 3,” and went down to become a cult crime horror classic.

#6: “Heat” (1995)

From our line-up so far it does seem that 1995 was a year with a lot of quality action dramas. Our next entry is no exception. Directed by Michael Mann and starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, “Heat” is basically a cat-and-mouse chase between a notorious thief and a seasoned L.A.P.D. officer. De Niro and Pacino have almost no screen time together so the audience is held in their seats with the anticipation of the face-off between the protagonists. The film is considered one of the best action movies of all time and has even served as the inspiration for director Christopher Nolan’s Gotham City in his 2008 film “The Dark Knight.”

#5: “Apollo 13” (1995)

Before there was “Gravity” and “Interstellar,” there was “Apollo 13.” Dramatizing the aborted 1970 moon mission, this historical docudrama by director Ron Howard is a quick-cutting account of the strategies employed to bring the astronauts home after an explosion interrupts their oxygen supply. With a strong cast, including Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, Bill Paxton and Gary Sinise, the film received nine Academy Award nominations and was applauded for its stunning visual effects. Meanwhile, “Apollo 13”’s famous tagline remains one of the most memorable movie quotes in history.

#4: “The Usual Suspects” (1995)

This neo-noir stunned audiences at the Cannes Film Festival in ’95, and became an overnight sensation by a young and unknown director at the time: Bryan Singer. The film stars Kevin Spacey as a pitiful con man being interrogated about the events that led to a deadly massacre on board a ship. Told in flashbacks from his point of view, the crime thriller is recognized for its unreliable narrator and surprise plot twists. The American Film Institute named it one of the best mystery films in movie history, and Kevin Spacey was awarded the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his turn as Roger ‘Verbal’ Kint.

#3: “Braveheart” (1995)

Mel Gibson not only directed and produced our next entry; he also starred in it. The film is a medieval war drama depicting the Scottish fight for independence in the 13th century. Gibson plays William Wallace, a brave Scot who, after witnessing the atrocities committed by the English king Edward when he was little, grows up to become a warrior fighting for the independence of his people. Gibson was awarded the Best Director Academy Award, and the movie took home the gold for Best Picture too, among several other Oscars.

#2: “Casino” (1995)

Martin Scorsese is the master of the mob movie, and with our next entry, he left New York for another city full of sin and excess – Las Vegas. Based on true events as described in the Nicholas Pileggi book, the crime flick mixes genres seamlessly, jumping from comedy to drama. Starring Scorsese usual suspects like Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, the film is a lesson on how mobsters took over the casino business only to become their own worst enemies in the process. Scorsese’s follow-up to “Goodfellas” had a different style and purpose, which makes it stand its own ground among an array of cult classics by the director.

Before we unveil our top picks, here are some honorable mentions:
- “Before Sunrise” (1995)
- “Babe” (1995)
- “Clueless” (1995)
- “12 Monkeys” (1995)
- “Die Hard with a Vengeance” (1995)
- “Strange Days” (1995)

#1: “Toy Story” (1995)

After all these excellent, but ultimately dark and intense movies, you probably expected something in the same genre to take our number one spot. Well, you guessed wrong, because our next entry is a ray of sunshine among all the movies on this list. “Toy Story” was the first feature-length Pixar movie and it changed big screen animation forever. With its untraditional story (no princesses in this one), and lovable characters, the computer-animated buddy comedy quickly became a critic’s darling and a box office success. It spawned two sequels (so far), that were just as good as the first movie, and the character of Woody, voiced by Tom Hanks, has since become one of cinema’s most loved heroes.

Do you agree with our list? What is your favorite movie from 1995? For more entertaining top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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Did you say ScorsAse. Not ScorsEse. Even though Scorsese is how it's spelled.
You know you put effort into your videos when you put Se7en as 7 on two lists.