The 25 best '90s movies

6. Fight Club (1999)

The movie: Few would have predicted Fight Club's long-lasting appeal back in 1999. Notoriously an under-performer both critically and commercially, David Fincher's brutal and provocative drama isn't for the faint-hearted (poor Angel Face) yet deservedly enjoyed a new life on DVD. Ironically, its success was down to people breaking the first rule of Fight Club and talking about it. Maybe they just noticed that behind the violence, there lies a movie that's as well crafted as any during the 90s. And continuing the decade's penchant for twist endings, it has a hell of a kicker. 

Most '90s moment: Practically every pithy one-liner Tyler delivers is a finger to the man ("Our great war is the spiritual war, our great depression is our lives...") a massive sign of '90s disillusionment. 

5. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

The movie: Being one of only three movies to win the Big Five Oscars is an achievement in itself, but to do it as a horror movie? Thats downright remarkable. Yet, that's just what The Silence of the Lambs did and no-one could refuse it the honour. A terrifying, suspenseful and bloody thriller, it delivers not one, but two iconic villains in Hannibal Lecter and Buffalo Bill and a whole host of unshakeably creepy moments. Be honest, you were put off lotion and chianti for a few months after watching it for the first time, right? 

Most '90s moment: It's the hair. Catherine Martin's big poofy hairdo. 

4. Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

The movie: He came back. And in some style. James Cameron repeated his Aliens trick, except this time he was following up his own movie and changing the genre. Where The Terminator was a contained chase thriller, Terminator 2: Judgment Day is epic action sci-fi with massive set pieces that even Michael Bay might deem excessive. But, crucially, we still cared for the characters. It's telling that one of the most lingering moments isn't a LIQUID METAL machine, it's a simple thumbs up.  

Most '90s moment: John Connor, and his seriously mulleted best friend, speeding to the mall on dirtbikes with a huge boombox blasting Guns N' Roses. So. Much. '90s. 

3. Goodfellas (1990)

The movie:The definitive gangster movie (sorry, The Godfather), Goodfellas remains Martin Scorsese's masterpiece. Eminently quotable, super stylish and impeccably performed by all (with a special shout-out to Joe Pesci's unpredictable Tommy DeVito), its two-and-a-half hour running time flies by. No sooner have you heard "As far back as I can remember..." and the end credits are rolling due to how fully immersed you are in the crime world. Somehow, Dances With Wolves beat it to Best Picture and Best Director at the Oscars. Yeah, I don't get it either. 

Most '90s moment: That utterly glorious and uninterrupted Steadicam shot as Henry and Karen make their way into the restaurant.  

2. Pulp Fiction (1994)

The movie: If Reservoir Dogs set out Quentin Tarantino's trademark features, then Pulp Fiction saw the maverick filmmaker let loose. A relentless barrage of pop culture references, ultra-violence and non-linear storytelling, it redefined independent cinema and remains as influential today as it did in 1994. Pulp Fiction inspired a whole new generation of independent directors and many have since tried to replicate its genius. No one has succeeded, but that's because no one else is Tarantino. Now, where can I get a Royale with cheese?  

Most '90s moment: Eric Stoltz, Rosanna Arquette and John Travolta hovering over Uma Thurman's overdosing body. 

1. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

The movie: Like Fight Club, The Shawshank Redemption is a movie that enjoyed its biggest success outside of cinemas. One of the best Stephen King adaptations, it's possibly the most uplifting movie ever. You have to endure some hardships to get there, but just try and find someone who didn't punch the air and get a bit teary when Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) escapes. Add in Morgan Freeman's silky-smooth, comforting storytelling and performance, and you have a movie that is difficult to resist and completely easy to fall in love with. I'll get busy living when I've finished watching it again. 

Most '90s moment: Freeman's inimitable voiceover.