7 modern classics streaming on Netflix
The 2000s were an interesting time when cargo pants reigned supreme and logging onto the world wide web gradually became the norm in many households. As we’re rapidly approaching the roaring 2020s, Netflix thought it prudent to release a handful of beloved modern classics that originally released over ten years ago on their streaming service. Some may hold fond memories of watching Brad Pitt chow down on whatever’s available in Ocean’s Eleven, others may cringe when thinking back to watching Wedding Crashers with their parents on the big screen. Here are seven modern classics that are revered to this day and will most likely continue to be in the foreseeable future.
Meet the Parents (2000)
Fathers everywhere rejoiced at watching their favorite big screen gangster portray an overprotective yet loving father in 2000’s Meet the Parents. Robert De Niro joined Ben Stiller, Blythe Danner, Teri Polo and Owen Wilson in this comedy that appeals to anyone who’s set to meet their significant other’s family. The absurdity of having a surname like “Focker” was a hysterical component of the film at the time and truly one of the biggest plot twists of the 21st century has to be the revelation that Greg’s (Stiller) first name was actually “Gaylord.” Audiences seemed to have adored the film as it grossed an astounding $330 million worldwide on a $55 million budget and spun-off two installments, including Meet the Fockers in 2004 and the third installment, Little Fockers, releasing ten years following the original.
Scary Movie (2000)
Following the release of Scary Movie, you were guaranteed at least one person answering the telephone with “whazzaaaap?” Scary Movie is arguably the last remaining parody/spoof film of a certain quality, in that it forms a coherent humorous plot utilizing a number of exaggerated elements commonly seen in popular horror films rather than throwing a bunch of dated pop culture references at the audience commonly seen in the Friedberg and Seltzer spoof movies. The Wayans Brothers spearheaded this film and its enjoyable sequel before the franchise became the rather diluted brand it is today. The original’s iconic poster remains a fan favorite to this day as it depicts a smiling (and possibly stoned) Ghostface surrounded by a terrified audience. The film went on to become the ninth highest-grossing domestic take of 2000, earning $157 million domestically and grossing over $278 million worldwide on a measly $19 million budget. Its recent installment, Scary Movie 5, released in 2013 and no word has been said regarding a potential sixth Scary Movie.
Ocean’s Eleven (2001)
The dashingly handsome “New Rat Pack” of the 2000s teamed up for this remake of the original 1960 film, Ocean’s Eleven. The film starred acting juggernauts George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts, Don Cheadle, Elliot Gould and more as they plan out the heist of a lifetime against Andy Garcia in this slick Soderbergh-directed picture. While its subsequent sequels were respectable successes at the box office, they weren’t too popular with the critics while the first installment was a massive hit with the audience and critics alike. Its perfect blend of showcasing the comedic elements of its talented cast and remaining somewhat grounded in reality translated to an enthralling film that became the fifth highest-grossing film of 2001. An all-female spin-off entitled Ocean’s Eight is set for release on June 8, 2018 which sees Danny Ocean’s estranged sister, Debbie (Sandra Bullock), attempt to pull off a similar heist of a lifetime at the Met Gala.
Donnie Darko (2001)
If you want to spice up a karaoke night, head to the stage and prepare the audience for your rendition of Gary Jules’ “Mad World.” It will be sure to get a few cheers and maybe a few sad looks from those suffering from their own respective existential crises. Donnie Darko starred a 21-year-old Jake Gyllenhaal alongside Jena Malone, sister Maggie Gyllenhaal, Katharine Ross and Mary McDonnell in this sci-fi cult classic that became a hit among its core group of diehard fans as it performed poorly at the box office. The film’s wide release came just a month following the 9/11 attacks and due to its advertising featuring an airplane crashing, it was scarcely advertised, which translated to the film ultimately barely recouping its budget. Critics praised the film for its intriguing themes and stellar directorial debut for Richard Kelly. A sequel, S. Darko, released in 2009 with no one from the original attached including Kelly (who was the mastermind behind Donnie Darko) and quietly died at both the box office and with critics.
Kill Bill Volumes 1 (2003) and 2 (2004)
Quentin Tarantino’s homage to grindhouse cinema came in the form of Uma Thurman portraying the powerful and compelling Bride with no name. Both volumes follow the Bride as she swears revenge against a team of assassins headed by their leader, Bill (David Carradine), who are responsible for killing her unborn child and attempting to kill her on her wedding day. The films showcase the raw, brute strength of its cast and also depicts some gorgeously-graphic sequences that are not for the faint of heart. Vol. 1 grossed over $180 million worldwide on a $30 million budget and became Tarantino’s highest-grossing film until 2009’s Inglorious Basterds. While its sequel took a slight dip at the worldwide box office, it still managed to gross $152 million. Tarantino once stated he initially believed his Kill Bill installments would become his own Dollars Trilogy and he’d need about 15 years between Vol. 2 and a potential Vol. 3. Since then, unfortunately, there has been no definitive timing on when we could expect a future installment and 2019 is right around the corner.
Wedding Crashers (2005)
Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn made weddings an event to actively look forward to in 2005’s Wedding Crashers. The duo star as best friends John (Wilson) and Jeremy (Vaughn) who anticipate wedding season as a time to meet, flirt and subsequently sleep with as many women as possible. The all-star cast includes Rachel McAdams, Bradley Cooper, Christopher Walken, Isla Fisher and Jane Seymour along with Will Ferrell’s legendary cameo as J&J’s former mentor who loves meat loaf. The film was a massive hit at the box office, grossing over $285 million worldwide on a $40 million budget and popularizing the phrase “stage five clinger.” In an interview in 2016, said on-screen clinger Isla Fisher stated that there apparently is a sequel to the film in the works and then somewhat retracted her statement in 2017, stating she “got in so much trouble for mentioning” a potential sequel as it was something top-secret that Vaughn mentioned to her in passing. As of February 2018, no definitive plans have been revealed yet.
For those craving the decade preceding the 2000s, the upcoming Netflix original series Everything Sucks! releases on the platform on February 16th. What are some of your favorite modern classics? List them off below.