Top 10 2000s Movies That Aged Extremely Well
VOICE OVER: Emily Brayton
WRITTEN BY: Sammie Purcell
For all the ups and downs the decade brought, these 2000s movies aged extremely well. Our countdown includes "The Devil Wears Prada," "Legally Blonde," "13 Going on 30," and more!
Top 10 2000s Movies That Aged Extremely Well
Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 2000s Movies That Aged Extremely Well.
For this list, we’ll be looking at those oughts films that achieved the impossible and stood the test of time - and/or seemingly got better as time went along.
If we missed your favorite 2000s classics, let us know in the comments below.
#10: “The Devil Wears Prada” (2006)
Gird your loins: for this entry, we’ve got the fashion favorite, “The Devil Wears Prada.” Based on Lauren Weisberger’s novel, the film follows Anne Hathaway’s Andy as she navigates her new job for an Anna Wintour-like figure, Meryl Streep’s Miranda Priestly. The movie was popular when it premiered, but its popularity has skyrocketed since its release. From rocketing some stars to fame – Emily Blunt – to bringing together real-life marriages – Stanley Tucci is now married to Emily Blunt’s sister – this film proves some things never go out of style. Also, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention how WILD it is Meryl didn’t win the Oscar for this.
#9: “Jennifer’s Body” (2009)
Unfortunately, this cult film didn’t get the respect it deserved when it first premiered in 2009. And its star, Megan Fox, CERTAINLY didn’t get the respect she deserved. Luckily, in recent years we’ve finally seen “Jennifer’s Body” – and Megan Fox – get the kudos they deserve for putting satirical, queer horror at the forefront. Watching this movie back now, the implications of the film’s premise – where multiple males offer up a female in order to further their careers – feels extremely poignant. Not only that, but the movie’s whip smart satire and take on female sexuality is handled incredibly well. No wonder it was directed by a woman – it’s easy to imagine how horrible it would have been if it weren’t.
#8: “Mamma Mia!” (2008)
This silly, colorful movie musical has become quite the fan favorite in the 2010s and early 2020s. But when it first came out – despite its incredible box office success – let’s just say, some critics certainly weren’t “having the time of their lives.” But watching the movie back now, it’s hard not to have a smile on your face. Everyone in the cast looks like they’re having an incredible time – they basically got paid to hang out with their friends in Greece and sing, so no kidding – and despite some not-so-great singing voices, everyone seems to be giving it their all. Whether or not those “drunk on set” rumors are true, the spirit of ABBA does seem to have captured them all.
#7: “13 Going on 30” (2004)
Rapid aging movies can be a hot bed for comedy – Tom Hanks in “Big,” Zac Efron in “17 Again.” But the film that has become even more near and dear to our hearts at time goes on is “13 Going on 30.” The rom-com follows Jenna Rink, a 13-year-old in the 80s who wakes up one day to find herself 30, flirty and thriving. Jennifer Garner is so good at playing up the wide-eyed bewilderment of Jenna, it makes you wonder why she didn’t go for a full-fledged comedy career. But what’s really aged wonderfully about this movie are its more emotional moments – if you can get through that Billy Joel “Vienna” scene without crying, you’re a stronger person than we are.
#6: “The Princess Diaries” (2001)
You could call Meg Cabot the queen of teen fiction, so it makes perfect sense that this movie, based off her incredible book series, would be so perfect. “The Princess Diaries” follows Mia Thermopolis, a reserved, sort of bumbling teenager whose world is rocked when she finds out she’s actually a princess. This teen comedy is a wonderful subversion of the typical “girl finds out she’s royalty” trope – Mia’s reaction to the news is less than positive, to say the least – but what makes this movie so perfect after so many years are its stellar soundtrack and all-star cast. With Anne Hathaway in her first major role and Dame Julie Andrews in her natural state as the queen, could you expect anything less than perfection?
#5: “Shrek” (2001)
When it comes to subverting fairy tales, our next entry did just that while embodying the theme of acceptance more so than any of its contemporaries. “Shrek,” a story about a grumpy ogre and a talking donkey who rescue a not-so-damsel-in-distress, is one part buddy comedy, one part romance, and one part subversion fun for the whole family. The movie has an absolutely stacked cast full of comedy allstars – Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz – and spawned a couple of pretty awesome sequels, too. During a time where Disney ruled the fairytale game, it was pretty awesome to see a fairytale story from Dreamworks that put real acceptance at the forefront and made it cool to stay true to yourself.
#4: “Legally Blonde” (2001)
Did you even grow up in the 2000s if you don’t know how to bend and snap? This comedy endeared Reese Witherspoon to our hearts forever and made Elle Woods a 2000s it-girl. In the movie, Elle’s boyfriend Warner breaks up with her before he goes to Harvard Law, claiming she’s not “serious” enough. To prove him wrong, she gets into Harvard, too – what, like it’s hard? This movie has so many memorable moments and an amazing cast, but what makes it age so well is Elle's unfailing positivity and kindness. She’s such an easy heroine to root for, and Witherspoon exudes sunshine and charisma in the role.
#3: “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy (2001-03)
One does not simply talk about the 2000s without talking about “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. The three films that make up this fantasy epic are considered some of the most influential in history – and watching them back 2 decades years later it’s really easy to see why. If you’re a fan of any type of fantasy at all – “Game of Thrones” heads, where you at? – it’s impossible to watch scenes like the Battle at Helm's Deep or Frodo’s final showdown with the Ring, and not see the connections. Plus, while of course some of the CGI has aged poorly, a lot of it still looks quite magnificent 20 years later.
#2: “Harry Potter” franchise (2001-11)
Here, we’ve got another fantasy story for the ages. Both “The Lord of the Rings” and “Harry Potter” film series started in 2001 – and no one could have known how huge both franchises would be. But “Harry Potter” in particular had a daunting task to perform – casting the child actors who would ideally helm the series for the rest of its run. Casting is important in ANY film, but casting child actors is a risk – they might look the part now, but there’s no telling how they’ll grow up, professionally or personally. The “Harry Potter” franchise really lucked out in finding its three leads, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint. Watching this first movie back now, you can’t help but smile at them knowing what’s to come.
Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.
“Last Holiday” (2006)
Put Queen Latifah in More Movies, Please
“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” (2012)
And in This Moment, I Swear, We Are Infinite
Better Than a Movie About a Cooking Rat Has a Right to Be
“School of Rock” (2003)
This One’s for Teacher’s Pets Everywhere
“Iron Man” (2008)
RDJ Made the MCU What It Is Today
#1: “Mean Girls” (2004)
Name a 2000s movie that has produced more memes, more catchphrases … it’s nearly impossible. “Mean Girls” was such a cultural moment, and while some of the jokes haven’t necessarily aged well – as jokes are meant to do – the cultural impact and the performances have only gotten more timeless. As Cady, Lindsay Lohan proves what an excellent actress she was, but the winner of this movie has to be Rachel McAdams as Regina George. No exaggeration, it’s an award-worthy performance. The cadence, the line readings, the looks – she’s on point. We’d call her fetch, but she’d probably yell at us.