In the modern era of Hollywood, reboots, sequels, and superheroes seem to be the business model for filmmaking these days. A remake should only exist to enhance a film that has a strong premise but failed in execution, yet classics such as Psycho and Ben-Hur have been butchered to add a few extra bucks into an executive’s pocket. This article will examine the five classic movies that came out in the 1990s that should never get the reboot treatment.
Quentin Tarantino crafted three excellent films in the ’90s, Reservoir Dogs, Jackie Brown, and Pulp Fiction; however, the latter of these films changed the rules of filmmaking. Packed with three interwoven stories following two hitmen (Vincent Vega and Jules Winnfield), a gangster and his wife (Marsellus Wallace and Mia Wallace), a struggling boxer (Butch Coolidge), a fixer (Winston Wolfe), and two armed robbers (Pumpkin and Honey Bunny), Pulp Fiction’s out of sequence stories were a bold piece of filmmaking that paid off thanks to Tarantino’s sharp skills as a director. Nominated for six Academy Awards and the winner of one (best writing), the third directorial effort from Tarantino made a huge cultural impact once it hit theaters in 1994 due to the colorful dialogue and characters. How could you not laugh out loud when Vincent shot Marvin in the face? Pulp Fiction will forever be penciled as one of the best movies made and unless Tarantino decides that his tenth film will be a remake of this 90’s classic, then no other director should even dare touch this iconic film.
Martin Scorsese started off the 90s with a bang with this brutal, funny, and violent gangster film, Goodfellas. Based on the book Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi, the film follows a kid who always wanted to be a gangster, Henry Hill, as the young man rises through the ranks of the mob and enjoys the benefits that come with it; however, Henry’s world starts to unravel on his way to the top. Goodfellas isn’t just a gangster film, the classic movie takes us through the lives of these “wise guys” and explores the ups and downs of the world that Henry and company live in. Anchored by tremendous performances including Joe Pesci’s Tommy DeVito, Goodfellas is a roller coaster ride from beginning to end. Like Pulp Fiction and every film on this list, Goodfellas is essentially a flawless film that doesn’t need to be touched.
Who thought a movie about two men starting a fight club would be one of the deepest films of the 90s? Based on the 1996 novel of the same name from Chuck Palahniuk, this classic film follows Jack, a depressed man suffering from insomnia who’s just looking to find some true meaning in his life. Enter Tyler Durden, a soap salesman he meets during a flight and his life makes a drastic change from the encounter. The two men eventually form a fight club with other men who are fed up with their mundane lives. Their friendship hits a snag when Marla, a fellow support group crasher, gets Tyler’s attention. This movie tackles masculinity and the dangers behind it in a very compelling manner. The strong acting and amazing direction are all thanks to David Fincher, a very talented filmmaker who’s directed numerous classics such as 1995’s Seven. Just watch the original film if you haven’t already. The slick visuals and storytelling can still connect with today’s generation.
The Shawshank Redemption
A prison drama that’s surprisingly uplifting, The Shawshank Redemption is about Andy Dufresne, a banker who’s wrongly sentenced to two consecutive life terms in prison for the murder of his wife and her lover. Like all citizens sentenced for such a heinous crime, Andy is transferred to a tough prison where he adapts to the harsh environment and helps the warden, all in 19 years. The themes of hope, redemption, and religion are translated well from the Stephen King novel, Hope Springs Eternal. Nominated for seven Academy Awards, both Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman perfectly evoke the emotions necessary to carry a film tackling heavy themes and the happy ending makes the tough journey worth sitting through.
To be honest, let’s just put the whole series here to save a spot for different films. When Toy Story arrived on the scene in 1995, Pixar was a relatively unknown studio at the time. Mainly, Disney was dominating the landscape when it came to animated films, so when a simple movie about a boy, a cowboy doll, and a spaceman arrived in theaters, expectations were low for this animated classic. However, Toy Story displayed all the traits of a classic film, a thought-provoking message, a compelling narrative, and a visual treat. Toy Story didn’t just connect with kids, but any adult who was a kid themselves (basically everyone); the impact of the animated movie introduced the world to Pixar studios and an unforgettable cast of characters that remain fresh until this day.
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