Around here, we tend to like movies. Or haven’t you noticed? When people love an art form enough to turn it into a hobby or a job, there’s a pretty good chance those people like to make that art apart of their lives as much as possible. Watching the same movies over and over, our favorites, is no different than watching a favorite sporting team compete every Sunday. Sure, the latter may have different outcomes every week, but we’re ultimately rooting for the same things — victory for our protagonists. Some times those victories are thrilling and nail-biting, other times they’re assured, and even other times they’re just too dull to instill much passion, anymore. And some times our protagonists lose, but if we really do care, we’ll always be back for more.
No sports team is ever perfect, no matter what Miami Dolphins fans tell you, and I hesitate to say that any movie is ever perfect, but some movies come mighty damn close. These aren’t necessarily the most “re-watchable” movies, as those tend to be mostly harmless confections, but these are movies that are nearly impossible to turn off should you chance upon watching them on. Movies like the first two Godfathers or All The President’s Men or Once Upon a Time in the West; movies that are so self-assured that they immediately suck you in; movies that may leave you emotionally spent, but you never want them to end because the tales, and the way they’re being told with the accretion of meaningful details, are simply that compelling. Every. Single. Time.
Objectively, in terms of craftsmanship, what’s rendered onscreen is precisely what the filmmakers set out to achieve and that confidence makes it easy to latch on. They are what we want all movies to be - good stories, well told. In sports, we just want the teams to play hard and put on a decent spectacle. When either miracle happens in either medium, I imagine that’s how characters in “Game of Thrones” experience real magic for the first time. (As long as they aren’t on the receiving end of, say, dragon- or wildfire.) It’s why we come back for more, again and again. And again.
Without further ado, here are 10 Classic Movies from the Last 15ish Years That Just Never Got Old:
Out of Sight
Children of Men
Rob Payne also writes the comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter, tumbls on the Tumblr, and his wares can be purchased here. He changed this list a dozen or more times before finished, and he’d probably add Lincoln or Argo in a few years.