Top 10 Films of 2001

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10. The Others (Amenabar, USA)
Twisty, horror thriller with the ‘I see dead people’ vibe of M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Sixth Sense”.


9. Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (Smith, USA)
One for the fans more than anything, “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back” is the film every View Askew fan wanted. Kevin Smith delivered on all accounts with a hugely entertaining, funny, and fast-paced comedy.


8. Frailty (Paxton, USA)
Bill Paxton acts in and directs this original and frightening horror film.


7. Joy Ride (aka Road Kill – Dahl, USA)
A tense and effective thriller in the mould of “The Hitcher”.


6. Monsters, Inc. (Doctor/Silverman, USA)
Pixar rarely put a foot wrong and “Monsters, Inc.” is no exception. Sprightly voice-over work from Billy Crystal and John Goodman add to the laughs.


5. Shrek (Adamson/Jenson, USA)
Could Dreamworks give Pixar a run for their money in the feature-length animation film stakes? The answer is: yes they could. “Shrek” is an entertaining and funny romp into the world of make believe, peppered throughout with some wonderful parody.


4. Donnie Darko (Kelly, USA)
Richard Kelly’s science-fiction-mystery-thriller is as infuriating as it is enjoyable. This unique film introduced us to a filmmaker with great potential.


3. Ocean’s Eleven (Soderbergh, USA)
“Ocean’s Eleven” was one of the most purely enjoyable films of 2001 thanks largely to a wonderfully assembled ensemble cast and Steven Soderbergh’s sprightly direction. Its fast-pace, comedy and slick heist scenes made it a favourite with audiences around the world.


2. Mulholland Dr. (Lynch, USA)
David Lynch took his audience on another mind-bending, reality-twisting thrill ride with the beautiful Naomi Watts in the role of aspiring actress Betty Elms. Originally conceived as an open-ended television pilot, Lynch has characteristically left the resulting feature film without a proper conclusion. That’s not to say the film isn’t worth seeing – it’s a journey of self-discovery into a nightmarish world of reality and unreality. That it doesn’t have an easily definable conclusion makes it that much more interesting – everyone has their own idea of what the film is about. Ultimately, no one is wrong.


1. Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (Jackson, New Zealand)
Peter Jackson’s introductory chapter into the world of J.R.R. Tolkien is a majestic, beautifully photographed, brilliantly realised fantasy adventure. The film would be the beginning of one of the finest trilogies ever made.

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About the Author
Editor of Top 10 Films, Dan Stephens is usually found pondering his next list. An unhealthy love of 1980s Hollywood sees most of his top 10s involving a time-travelling DeLorean and an adventurous archaeologist going by the name Indiana.

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  1. Avatar
    Encore Entertainment Reply

    The only omission I’d consider as egregious would be “Gosford Park”. No love for that one? In the Bedroom, Moulin Rouge and Bandits are three others I loved that year…no big argument with #1 though.

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    James Ewing Reply

    Mulholland Dr. and Donnie Darko are two films I need to revisit. Both are films that are very close to being great for me, but I’m not sure if they’ve made it there yet.

    The Fellowship of the Ring is actually the film that got me into watching films so I love it dearly. Happy to see it as your #1.

    Actually, it wouldn’t be my number one, that would be the documentary Rivers and Tides.

    Also, I’d add In the Mood for Love as my #3 of the year.

  3. Avatar
    Dan Reply

    @James I will have to check out Rivers and Tides. I think Fellowship had to be number 1 for me because I have such fond memories of seeing at the cinema that year.

    @Encore Many excellent films but I just couldn’t find a spot in my top 10 for them. I have to say I’m not a fan of Moulin Rouge though. Bandits was surprisingly good – that’s a film I must see again.

  4. Avatar
    Róisín Reply

    Great lists on your blog. When I was reading through this particular one, I started getting nostalgic for the days of decent cinema releases! Summer 2010, for example, has been pretty poor, with a rehash of this and a spin-off of that. I think it’s all “S.Darko”‘s fault!

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    Aiden R. Reply

    Just one more reason I need to watch Mulholland Dr. again and finally get around to doing the LotR marathon I keep putting off. Some day…

    Solid list, man.

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    Rodney Reply

    Ahh, Mulholland Drive. I had the pleasure of seeing this film in the cinema, and after numerous viewings on DVD in later years, I still don’t have a clue what it’s about. Glorious.

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    Luke Reply

    thank, thank, thank you for adding Mulholland Dr. not enough people appreciate this pick

  8. Avatar
    Dan Reply

    It is difficult to criticise a film when you have no clue what it was about! Based on that logic – Mulholland Dr. is the best film I’ve ever seen! But joking aside, it’s such a haunting film and I love Naomi Watts’ performance. And, like so many of Lynch’s films, it is the random images here and there that you remember, all underpinned by a score you can’t forget.

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    DEZMOND Reply

    as much as I adored LOTR, that much I hated MULHOLLAND (beside BLACK DAHLIA, ANTICHRIST and I’M NOT THERE, it’s one of ten films I regret ever seeing) 🙂 I still don’t like Naomi Watts, even years after that cold and boring performance. But I did like THE OTHERS although I thought it was quite predictable, but I loved the atmosphere in it.

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