My favorite movie each year I've been alive

From 1989 to 2015. I'll update after seeing 2016 releases once the year is over. I'm sad about a lot of the entries that didn't make the list but that's just a testament to how great movies consistently are.
  1. 1989- Field of Dreams
    Field of Dreams is such a legendary movie I don't think I could pick anything else. I cry nearly every time at the end.
  2. 1990- Goodfellas
    Pretty Woman is a classic, but few movies are a match for arguably Scorsese's best movie. Goodfellas is so well written and directed it's tough to imagine how it ever lost at the Oscars. There's so much going on and none of it feels forced
  3. 1991- Terminator 2: Judgment Day
    Beauty and the Beast, Silence of the Lambs and Boyz N The Hood are all wonderful but Terminator 2 is the most important action movie ever made. James Cameron set the bar so high for the genre that it's only been reached a handful of times since.
  4. 1992- Unforgiven
    Tough call between Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs and Clint Eastwood's last great Western but I'm inclined to choose Unforgiven over Reservoir Dogs most times. It's a somber, dark and brooding Western that may not be fun, but a couple of old timers taking on a job to avenge the disfigurement of a prostitute makes for a compelling character drama.
  5. 1993- Jurassic Park
    The dinos win the day! Lots of classics though including The Sandlot, Schindler's List and the runner up to Jurassic Park: Tombstone. But it's tough to deny the theme park appeal of living dinosaurs and the struggle to survive against them.
  6. 1994- Leon The Professional
    Tough call between Pulp Fiction, Forrest Gump, The Lion King and more. But Jean Reno, Natalie Portman and Gary Oldman made the movie I keep returning and keep quoting. An amazing drama about a hitman stuck taking care of an orphan and the crooked cop out to get them.
  7. 1995- Casino
    Scorsese strikes again! Robert Deniro and Joe Pesci have amazing chemistry in this Las Vegas crime story! Toss in Sharon Stone's mess of a character and these three just make the movie.
  8. 1996- Fargo
    The Coen brothers tell such a compelling and surreal murder story. I'd never imagine real life quite like this, but the Coen brothers capture the imagination with Fargo.
  9. 1997- The Fifth Element
    I want to say Titanic because it's the best movie that year in nearly all respects. But I'd be lying if I said The Fifth Element was not my favorite movie from 1997. It's hilarious, fun, and just brilliant, well thought out sci fi.
  10. 1998- Saving Private Ryan
    No contest here, this is one of the greatest war movies ever made and tugs on the heartstrings. But dang is it intense and violent while doing it. The opening beach scene sets the tone like no other war movie ever has and then it continues on a search to find one man to send him back home.
  11. 1999- The Matrix
    Another one that was no contest. The Matrix is intelligent, stylish, thought provoking and really fun. The sequels sucked but the original remains a brilliant high point in sci fi. The Matrix posed the right questions and left enough unanswered to keep me coming back for more.
  12. 2000- Gladiator
    It might seem like a safe choice, especially with Chocolat and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon available, but I'm always so enthralled with Ridley Scott's revenge story. Joaquin Phoenix seems likens harmless choice for a villain, but he absolutely works as a power hungry coward.
  13. 2001- The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
    My childhood world never be the same again. Seeing the black riders for the first time was out of this world and terrifying as all hell.
  14. 2002- The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
    The battle of Helm's Deep is the greatest cinematic battle ever. But the best part was when Gandalf and the Rider's of Rohan came down that mountain, shining light on the wicked and bringing hope to the battle.
  15. 2003- The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
    Every holiday it's tradition: I watch the entire extended edition trilogy and bask in the glory of these movies. Thank you, Peter Jackson! This trilogy to this day brings me so much joy.
  16. 2004- Kill Bill Vol. 2
    The first half would have made the list were it not for Return of the King. But this blood-soaked revenge story is Tarantino's action opus. The second half actually outshines the first because it focuses more on character and story which pushes the action and gives it more depth. This is really stellar stuff.
  17. 2005- Wedding Crashers
    While The 40 Year Old Virgin is generally the most loved, I think Wedding Crashers takes it for me. It's hilarious, genuinely romantic, and you get to see Vince Vaughn shot in the ass. It's so good!
  18. 2006- Little Miss Sunshine
    It was a toss up between this and Pan's Labyrinth but Little Miss Sunshine just makes me FEEL good. Like whatever is wrong can be overcome. Not every movie does that. Every character is so perfectly realized and relatable I feel like they're all family.
  19. 2007- There Will Be Blood
    2007 is a loaded year. No Country for Old Men is the ultimate study of evil. Eastern Promises is arguably Cronenberg's best movie and a crime classic. There Will Be Blood is important to the discussion of American cinema. Michael Clayton is perfectly paced and brilliant. It's tough to pick one, but There Will Be Blood is the one that holds the most importance in cinema. It barely nudges past the other three. I won't lie, this choice hurt.
  20. 2008- The Dark Knight
    I almost went with Frost/Nixon but The Dark Knight, solely by virtue of Heath Ledger's performance, puts the superhero genre front and center with the best movie it's ever had with an existential nightmare of an antagonist to deal with.
  21. 2009- Inglourious Basterds
    Another coin toss, this time between the Basterds and Avatar. Inglourious Basterds is one of the coolest, funniest, instantly quotable movies ever made. Christoph Waltz and Brad Pitt are both two of the greatest characters to grace a screen.
  22. 2010- Inception
    A surreal, Paprika-inspired sci-fi movie. Inception is one of the most thoughtful, perplexing and stunning big budget movies ever made. To this day I still debate how it really ends.
  23. 2011- Midnight in Paris
    We all dream of how much more wonderful life would be in another time period. Midnight in Paris shows us the folly of those thoughts and tries to ground us in reality by showing a fantasy come to life.
  24. 2012- Argo
    Another safe choice, especially with Django Unchained released this year too. But Argo kept my attention the entire time. It's so expertly crafted that you can't take your eyes off. It's a modern American Classic.
  25. 2013- Dallas Buyer's Club
    When a bigoted homophobe ends up with AIDS, a disease he thought only affected gay men, he comes to terms with his humanity and works to save not only himself, but everyone who seeks his help and makes unlikely friends along the way.
  26. 2014- The Imitation Game
    The Nazi Enigma has never been cracked before and winning the war without cracking that code is unlikely. Alan Turing is part of the team to try to crack Enigma but danger comes from more than just the Nazis.
  27. 2015- Mad Max: Fury Road
    No action movie had managed to surpass Terminator 2 for over 20 years. Then Fury Road happened. It's like a 2 hour chase sequence and it never lets up. Tom Hardy is perfect and Charlize Theron steals the show. The movie does what the finest action movies do: make a powerful statement and use that statement to push unrelenting action set pieces your way. But on top of that it has both a great sense of place and personal identity. This is as close to perfect as movies get.