The 100 Best Movies of the 2000s: 50-41
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48. Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead (Sydney Lumet, 2007)
Sydney Lumet, whose career kicked off with the incredible Twelve Angry Men, passed away fairly recently, but not before making another masterpiece. A modern-day Greek Tragedy about two brothers in need of cash who decide to rob their parents’ jewelry store, it’s certainly not a feel good film, but if you’re in the mood for tense, devastating thriller, this is the movie.
Phillip Seymour Hoffman gives one of my favorite performances ever as the older brother, who has a cocaine habit to support. Albert Finney, Ethan Hawke, and Mariso Tomei are also excellent as his dad, brother, and trophy-wife, respectively.
47. Kill Bill Volume 1 (Quentin Tarantino, 2003)
I prefer to think of Kill Bill as one film, since it was originally meant to be one, but each of the halves does have its own appeal. While I prefer the slower-paced, better-acted, western-influenced Volume Two, Volume One is singular as an action film, weaving several of the best swordfights you’ve ever seen into a brilliantly non-traditional structure. Volume Two is a better film, but Volume One is tons of fun, and the artistry behind the glorious, massively bloody battle at the House of Blue Leaves is undeniable.