The year 2000 marked the turn of a new millennium, and it was a year filled with notable films across various genres.

From epic blockbusters to thought-provoking dramas, to heartwarming comedies, to gripping thrillers, there were a diverse array of movies that captured audiences’ attention.

In this era, Hollywood continued to push the boundaries of storytelling and visual effects, and filmmakers brought their unique visions to the screen.

Best 2000 Movies

Some of the best movies from 2000 are still celebrated today for their impact on cinema and their ability to captivate audiences around the world. In this list, we will explore some of the most memorable films from the year 2000 that left a lasting impression on audiences and critics alike.

1. Memento (2000)

Memento is a 2000 neo-noir psychological thriller film written and directed by Christopher Nolan, starring Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Joe Pantoliano.

The film tells the story of Leonard Shelby (Guy Pearce), a man suffering from anterograde amnesia, who is unable to form new memories and must rely on notes, tattoos, and Polaroid photographs to keep track of his life.

Leonard is on a mission to find the man who raped and murdered his wife, using his condition as a way to deceive those around him and manipulate his way to the truth. The story is told in reverse chronological order, with the final scene revealing the beginning of the story.

Memento was praised for its innovative narrative structure, which subverted the conventions of traditional storytelling and challenged audiences to engage with the film in a new and exciting way.

The film’s themes of memory, identity, and truth were also widely praised, as were the performances of the cast and Nolan’s stylish direction.

Memento received numerous accolades, including two Academy Award nominations for Best Original Screenplay and Best Film Editing.

It is widely regarded as a modern classic and a landmark achievement in independent filmmaking, solidifying Christopher Nolan’s reputation as one of the most innovative and talented filmmakers of his generation.

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Memento
  • Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano (Actors)
  • Christopher Nolan (Director) - Jennifer Todd (Producer)
  • English, Spanish (Subtitles)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

2. Almost Famous (2000)

“Almost Famous” is a comedy-drama film directed by Cameron Crowe and released in 2000. The film stars Patrick Fugit as William Miller, a young aspiring music journalist who goes on tour with the fictional band Stillwater for Rolling Stone magazine in the early 1970s.

As Miller becomes more embedded with the band, he develops relationships with various members and witnesses the ups and downs of the rock and roll lifestyle.

   

Along the way, he falls for Penny Lane, played by Kate Hudson, a groupie who is also involved with one of the band members.

“Almost Famous” received critical acclaim for its heartfelt storytelling, fantastic soundtrack, and strong performances, particularly by Fugit and Hudson.

The film was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Original Screenplay, and won Best Original Screenplay for Cameron Crowe. It also won a Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy.

The film remains a beloved example of coming-of-age storytelling and a tribute to the music of the 1970s.

Almost Famous
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Billly Crudup, Frances McDormand (Actors)
  • Cameron Crowe (Director) - Cameron Crowe (Writer) - Ian Bryce (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

3. O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000)

O Brother, Where Art Thou? is a 2000 comedy-drama film directed by Joel and Ethan Coen. The film is loosely based on Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey and is set in rural Mississippi during the Great Depression.

The story follows three escaped convicts, Ulysses Everett McGill (George Clooney), Pete (John Turturro), and Delmar (Tim Blake Nelson), who embark on a journey to find buried treasure while being pursued by the law and encountering a series of eccentric characters along the way.

The film’s soundtrack features bluegrass, folk, and country music, and was a major success, winning the Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 2002.

O Brother, Where Art Thou? was praised for its witty script, colorful characters, and stylish visuals, and was a commercial success, grossing over $71 million worldwide.

The film also helped launch the careers of actors such as Tim Blake Nelson and singer-songwriter Alison Krauss, who performed several songs on the soundtrack.

O Brother, Where Art Thou?
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • George Clooney, John Turturro, Tim Blake Nelson (Actors)
  • Joel Coen (Director) - Ethan Coen (Writer) - Ethan Coen (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

4. Amores Perros (2000)

“Amores Perros” is a Mexican drama film released in 2000, directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu. The movie is an interweaving anthology of three separate stories set in Mexico City, all connected by a car crash that brings the characters together.

The film explores the themes of love, loss, and redemption, portraying the lives of various characters from different social backgrounds and their struggles to survive in a harsh urban environment.

The stories include a dog-fighting ring owner, a young model and her lover, and a homeless man.

The film features a talented cast of actors, including Gael García Bernal, Emilio Echevarría, and Goya Toledo, and is notable for its non-linear narrative structure, as well as its gritty and realistic portrayal of urban life in Mexico City.

“Amores Perros” was widely acclaimed by critics and audiences alike, winning the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival and receiving an Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Language Film.

The movie marked the directorial debut of Alejandro González Iñárritu and remains one of the most important and influential works in Mexican cinema.

5. Me, Myself & Irene (2000)

Me, Myself & Irene is a 2000 comedy film directed by the Farrelly brothers and starring Jim Carrey and Renée Zellweger.

The film follows the story of Charlie Baileygates, a Rhode Island state trooper who develops a split personality disorder after years of repressing his anger and emotions.

Charlie’s alter ego, Hank, is everything that Charlie is not – bold, aggressive, and impulsive.

   

When Charlie is assigned to escort a woman named Irene (played by Zellweger) back to her home in New York, Hank begins to take control and the two personalities begin to battle for dominance.

Me, Myself & Irene received mixed reviews from critics, with some praising Carrey’s comedic performance and the film’s irreverent humor, while others criticized it for its crude jokes and uneven tone. The film was a commercial success, grossing over $140 million worldwide.

Despite its mixed reception, Me, Myself & Irene remains a notable entry in Jim Carrey’s filmography and the Farrelly brothers’ body of work, known for its over-the-top humor, physical comedy, and memorable characters.

Me, Myself & Irene
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Jim Carrey, Renee Zellweger, Robert Forster (Actors)
  • Peter Farrelly (Director) - Bradley Thomas (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

6. Wonder Boys (2000)

“Wonder Boys” is a comedy-drama film released in 2000, directed by Curtis Hanson. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Michael Chabon and stars Michael Douglas, Tobey Maguire, Frances McDormand, and Robert Downey Jr., among others.

The film follows the story of Grady Tripp (played by Michael Douglas), a troubled and eccentric English professor and novelist who is struggling with writer’s block and a series of personal crises.

Over the course of a chaotic weekend, Grady navigates through various challenges, including dealing with his pregnant mistress (played by Frances McDormand), trying to help his talented but troubled student James Leer (played by Tobey Maguire), and dealing with the antics of his editor and friend Terry Crabtree (played by Robert Downey Jr.).

“Wonder Boys” is known for its witty and intelligent screenplay, filled with sharp dialogue and complex characterizations. It explores themes of creativity, self-discovery, and the complexities of human relationships, while also incorporating elements of dark comedy and drama.

The film provides a humorous and poignant look at the struggles of artists and intellectuals, as well as the complexities of navigating personal and professional challenges.

The performances in “Wonder Boys” are widely praised, particularly Michael Douglas as the eccentric and troubled Grady Tripp, and Tobey Maguire as the enigmatic James Leer.

The film received positive reviews for its writing, direction, and acting, and was nominated for several awards, including an Academy Award for Best Original Song.

“Wonder Boys” has gained a cult following over the years for its unique blend of humor, drama, and literary themes. It is considered a standout film of the early 2000s and has been recognized for its engaging storytelling, well-drawn characters, and memorable performances.

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Wonder Boys
  • Philip Bosco, Robert Downey Jr., Frances McDormand (Actors)
  • Curtis Hanson (Director)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

7. In July (2000)

“In July” is a German romantic comedy film directed by Fatih Akin and released in 2000. The film stars Moritz Bleibtreu and Christiane Paul in the lead roles and is known for its quirky and offbeat charm.

The story follows Daniel (Moritz Bleibtreu), a young German teacher who impulsively decides to travel from Hamburg to Istanbul to follow a beautiful Turkish woman named Melek (Idil Üner) he meets during a chance encounter.

Along the way, he picks up a hitchhiker named Juli (Christiane Paul), who is also traveling to Istanbul to find her lost love.

As the two unlikely travel companions embark on a road trip filled with misadventures and encounters with eccentric characters, they gradually develop feelings for each other, leading to unexpected romantic complications.

“In July” is a lighthearted and whimsical film that blends comedy, romance, and adventure.

It explores themes of spontaneity, destiny, and the pursuit of love in a cross-cultural context, as Daniel and Juli navigate their way through different countries, cultures, and languages in their quest for romance.

The film’s charm lies in its quirky characters, picturesque settings, and unexpected twists, making it a refreshing and enjoyable watch.

“In July” received positive reviews from critics for its unique storytelling, memorable performances, and heartfelt humor.

It won several awards at international film festivals and is considered a standout film in Fatih Akin’s early career, showcasing his talent for blending different genres and cultures in his films.

If you’re looking for a charming romantic comedy with a touch of adventure, “In July” is definitely worth checking out.

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Smithsonian Magazine, July, 2000
  • Multiple (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 04/12/2024 (Publication Date) - Smithsonian (Publisher)

8. Cast Away (2000)

Cast Away is a 2000 survival drama film directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Tom Hanks as Chuck Noland, a FedEx executive who becomes stranded on a deserted island in the South Pacific after a plane crash.

The film explores Chuck’s struggles to survive on the island for four years, during which he must learn to adapt to his surroundings, find food and shelter, and maintain his mental and emotional resilience.

As Chuck battles the physical and psychological challenges of his situation, he also grapples with the loss of his former life and his relationships, including his fiancée Kelly (Helen Hunt) and his best friend and mentor Stan (Nick Searcy).

Through his experiences, Chuck gains a new perspective on life and the importance of human connection.

Cast Away was widely praised for its realistic portrayal of survival and Tom Hanks’ powerful performance, which earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor. The film also received critical acclaim for its themes of isolation, self-discovery, and the resilience of the human spirit.

Cast Away was a commercial success, grossing over $429 million worldwide, and is regarded as one of the best films of 2000. It remains a poignant and emotionally resonant story of survival, loss, and hope.

Cast Away [DVD] [2000]
  • German, Dutch (Subtitles)

9. Chocolat (2000)

“Chocolat” is a romantic drama film directed by Lasse Hallström and released in 2000.

The film stars Juliette Binoche as Vianne Rocher, a young single mother who arrives in a conservative French village and opens a chocolaterie, much to the disapproval of the town’s mayor, played by Alfred Molina.

As Vianne’s business thrives, she begins to change the lives of the town’s residents, including a repressed housewife played by Judi Dench, and a nomadic riverboat traveler played by Johnny Depp.

However, her presence also creates conflict, particularly with the mayor, who sees her as a threat to the town’s traditional values.

“Chocolat” was praised for its sumptuous visuals, excellent performances, and heartwarming storytelling.

The film received five Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, and won one for Best Original Score.

It was also a commercial success, grossing over $150 million worldwide. “Chocolat” is often considered a beloved example of a romantic drama with elements of magical realism.

10. Erin Brockovich (2000)

Erin Brockovich is a 2000 biographical film directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Julia Roberts. The film is based on the true story of Erin Brockovich, a legal clerk who helped win a groundbreaking lawsuit against the Pacific Gas and Electric Company in the 1990s.

The story follows Erin (Julia Roberts), a single mother who is struggling to make ends meet.

She takes a job as a legal clerk and becomes involved in a case against Pacific Gas and Electric Company, who are accused of contaminating the water supply of a small California town with toxic chemicals.

Despite facing opposition from powerful lawyers and a skeptical public, Erin uses her determination and resourcefulness to uncover evidence of the company’s wrongdoing and help the residents of the town win a $333 million settlement.

Erin Brockovich was a critical and commercial success, earning Julia Roberts an Academy Award for Best Actress and grossing over $250 million worldwide.

The film was praised for its strong performances, engaging storytelling, and inspiring message about the power of perseverance and social justice.

Erin Brockovich
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Julia Roberts, Albert Finney, Conchata Ferrell (Actors)
  • Steven Soderbergh (Director) - Susannah Grant (Writer) - Danny DeVito (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

11. Dancer in the Dark (2000)

“Dancer in the Dark” is a Danish musical drama film directed by Lars von Trier and released in 2000. The film stars Icelandic singer Björk in her first and only acting role, alongside Catherine Deneuve, David Morse, and Peter Stormare.

The film tells the story of Selma (Björk), a Czech immigrant living in the United States with her young son.

Selma works tirelessly in a factory to save money for an operation to prevent her son from suffering the same fate as her – losing his eyesight.

Despite facing numerous challenges and setbacks, Selma finds solace in her vivid imagination and passion for musicals, which she uses as an escape from her difficult reality.

However, as her life unravels and she faces a grave injustice, Selma’s world begins to collapse, leading to a tragic turn of events.

“Dancer in the Dark” is a visually stunning and emotionally intense film that delves into the dark and gritty aspects of human nature.

It combines elements of musical and drama, with Björk’s hauntingly beautiful original songs woven into the narrative.

The film is known for its unique handheld camera technique and experimental storytelling, with von Trier’s distinctive style pushing the boundaries of traditional filmmaking.

Björk’s performance in “Dancer in the Dark” was widely acclaimed, earning her a Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival. The film also received critical acclaim for its powerful storytelling, striking visuals, and thought-provoking themes.

However, it is worth noting that “Dancer in the Dark” can be emotionally challenging and deals with heavy subject matter, including poverty, injustice, and the human capacity for cruelty.

Overall, “Dancer in the Dark” is a visually and emotionally striking film that offers a unique and challenging viewing experience. It is a notable entry in Lars von Trier’s filmography and a standout performance by Björk, making it a significant film from the year 2000.

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Dancer in the Dark (2000)
  • Björk, Catherine Deneuve, David Morse (Actors)
  • Lars von Trier (Director)

12. You Can Count on Me (2000)

You Can Count on Me is a 2000 drama film written and directed by Kenneth Lonergan, starring Laura Linney, Mark Ruffalo, and Matthew Broderick. The film tells the story of a sister and brother, Sammy and Terry Prescott, who reunite in their hometown after years of estrangement.

Sammy (Laura Linney) is a single mother and bank loan officer who struggles with balancing her responsibilities as a parent and her own desires for independence and romance.

Terry (Mark Ruffalo), on the other hand, is a troubled drifter who has a history of drug abuse and impulsiveness. The film explores the siblings’ complicated relationship as they try to reconnect and confront their unresolved past.

You Can Count on Me was widely praised for its sensitive and nuanced portrayal of family dynamics, as well as its strong performances from Linney and Ruffalo.

The film was also praised for its naturalistic dialogue, its exploration of themes such as loss, regret, and forgiveness, and its unflinching depiction of the challenges and joys of everyday life.

The film was a critical success, receiving numerous awards and nominations, including Academy Award nominations for Best Actress (Laura Linney) and Best Original Screenplay (Kenneth Lonergan).

It is regarded as a modern classic and a landmark achievement in independent cinema, solidifying Kenneth Lonergan’s reputation as one of the most talented and insightful filmmakers of his generation.

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You Can Count on Me [DVD]
  • Matthew Broderick, Laura Linney, J. Smith-Cameron (Actors)
  • Kenneth Lonergan (Director)
  • English (Subtitle)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

13. Gimme Some Truth: The Making of John Lennon’s Imagine Album (2000 Video)

“Gimme Some Truth: The Making of John Lennon’s Imagine Album” is a documentary film released in 2000, directed by Andrew Solt. The film offers a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of John Lennon’s iconic album “Imagine,” released in 1971.

The documentary features interviews with many of the people who worked on the album, including producer Phil Spector, recording engineer Eddie Veal, and musicians Klaus Voormann and Jim Keltner.

It also includes archival footage of Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono, as well as footage of the recording sessions at Lennon’s home studio and at the famous Abbey Road Studios in London.

The documentary explores the creative process behind some of the most beloved songs of Lennon’s career, including the title track “Imagine,” as well as “Jealous Guy” and “Gimme Some Truth.”

It also touches on the political and social context of the time, including Lennon and Ono’s activism and the Vietnam War.

“Gimme Some Truth” was praised for its comprehensive look at the making of the album, as well as its exploration of Lennon’s artistry and social and political impact. The film offers a fascinating glimpse into the mind of one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.

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Gimme Some Truth - The Making of John Lennon's "Imagine"
  • Andrew Solt (Director)
  • English (Subtitle)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • Audience Rating: NR (Not Rated)

14. Battle Royale (2000)

Battle Royale is a 2000 Japanese dystopian thriller film directed by Kinji Fukasaku, based on the novel of the same name by Koushun Takami.

The film is set in an alternate version of Japan where a totalitarian government selects a class of ninth-grade students to compete in a deadly game known as the “Battle Royale.”

The story follows the class of students as they are taken to a deserted island, given weapons, and forced to fight to the death until only one survivor remains. The film explores themes such as violence, youth rebellion, and the corruption of authority.

Battle Royale was controversial upon its release due to its graphic violence and depiction of young people killing each other, leading to it being banned in several countries.

However, it also gained a cult following and has been praised for its commentary on the pressures of modern society and the brutal effects of authoritarianism.

The film was influential in popular culture, inspiring several other works of media such as the Hunger Games series and various video games.

Battle Royale
  • Factory sealed DVD
  • Tatsuya Fujiwara (Actor)
  • Kinji Fukasaku (Director)
  • English (Subtitle)
  • English (Publication Language)

15. Divided We Fall (2000)

“Divided We Fall” is a Czech comedy-drama film released in 2000, directed by Jan Hřebejk and written by Petr Jarchovský.

The movie is set in Czechoslovakia during World War II and follows the story of a childless couple, Josef and Marie, who hide a Jewish man in their home.

As the war progresses, the couple must navigate the dangers of living under Nazi occupation and keep their secret hidden from their suspicious neighbors.

Meanwhile, their relationship is strained by the arrival of a former love interest of Josef’s, who complicates their already difficult situation.

The film stars Boleslav Polívka, Anna Šišková, and Csongor Kassai and was highly acclaimed for its depiction of life under Nazi rule and its exploration of themes of morality and human compassion.

“Divided We Fall” was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film and won numerous other awards at film festivals around the world. It remains one of the most highly regarded Czech films of all time.

Divided We Fall
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Bolek Polivka, Karel Hermánek, Csongor Kassai (Actors)
  • Jan Hrebejk (Director) - Jan Hrebejk (Writer) - Ondrej Trojan (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

16. The Way of the Gun (2000)

The Way of the Gun is a 2000 crime thriller film written and directed by Christopher McQuarrie, starring Ryan Phillippe and Benicio del Toro as two criminals who kidnap a pregnant surrogate mother (played by Juliette Lewis) for a ransom.

As the two men attempt to carry out the kidnapping, they become embroiled in a dangerous web of deceit and betrayal, and soon find themselves being pursued by a team of highly trained bodyguards hired by the surrogate mother’s wealthy benefactors.

The Way of the Gun received mixed reviews from critics, with some praising the film’s gritty, realistic tone and McQuarrie’s direction, while others criticized the film for its convoluted plot and excessive violence.

Despite its mixed reception, the film has gained a cult following over the years for its stylized action sequences and unconventional approach to the crime genre.

The Way of the Gun is notable for being McQuarrie’s directorial debut, and for its impressive ensemble cast, which includes James Caan, Taye Diggs, and Nicky Katt in supporting roles.

The Way of the Gun
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Ryan Phillippe, Benicio Del Toro, Juliette Lewis (Actors)
  • Christopher McQuarrie (Director) - Christopher McQuarrie (Writer) - Kenneth Kokin (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

Best 2000 Movies – Wrap Up

The year 2000 was a remarkable year for cinema, with many critically acclaimed and commercially successful films released.

From epic blockbusters to intimate dramas, the films of 2000 explored a wide range of themes and genres, showcasing the diversity and vitality of contemporary filmmaking.

Some of the most notable films of 2000 include:

Gladiator: A sweeping epic set in ancient Rome, starring Russell Crowe as a general seeking revenge against the corrupt emperor who murdered his family.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: A visually stunning martial arts epic set in ancient China, directed by Ang Lee and featuring an all-star cast.

Traffic: A multi-layered drama exploring the complexities of the war on drugs, directed by Steven Soderbergh and featuring an ensemble cast including Benicio Del Toro, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Michael Douglas.

Memento: A mind-bending thriller about a man with short-term memory loss seeking revenge for his wife’s murder, directed by Christopher Nolan.

Almost Famous: A coming-of-age drama about a young journalist on the road with a rock band in the 1970s, directed by Cameron Crowe.

Erin Brockovich: A biographical drama based on the true story of a legal assistant who helped win a landmark case against a California utility company, starring Julia Roberts.

Requiem for a Dream: A harrowing drama about addiction and desperation, directed by Darren Aronofsky and featuring powerful performances from its ensemble cast.

These films and many others from 2000 continue to be celebrated for their artistry, innovation, and impact on cinema.