Best Movies of 2003

1.

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

7.5

Aragorn is revealed as the heir to the ancient kings as he, Gandalf and the other members of the broken fellowship struggle to save Gondor from Sauron's forces. Meanwhile, Frodo and Sam bring the ring closer to the heart of Mordor, the dark lord's realm.

Starring: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Viggo Mortensen, Sean Astin, Liv Tyler
Directed by: Peter Jackson
Release date: 2003-12-01
2.

Finding Nemo

6.9

Nemo, an adventurous young clownfish, is unexpectedly taken from his Great Barrier Reef home to a dentist's office aquarium. It's up to his worrisome father Marlin and a friendly but forgetful fish Dory to bring Nemo home -- meeting vegetarian sharks, surfer dude turtles, hypnotic jellyfish, hungry seagulls, and more along the way.

Starring: Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres, Alexander Gould, Willem Dafoe, Brad Garrett
Directed by: Andrew Stanton
Release date: 2003-05-30
3.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

6.6

Jack Sparrow, a freewheeling 19th-century pirate, quarrels with a rival pirate bent on pillaging Port Royal. When the governor's daughter is kidnapped, Sparrow decides to help the girl's love save her.

Starring: Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley, Jack Davenport
Directed by: Gore Verbinski
Release date: 2003-07-09
4.

Kill Bill: Vol. 1

6.6

An assassin is shot by her ruthless employer, Bill, and other members of their assassination circle – but she lives to plot her vengeance.

Starring: Uma Thurman, Lucy Liu, Vivica A. Fox, Daryl Hannah, David Carradine
Directed by: Quentin Tarantino
Release date: 2003-10-10
5.

Big Fish

6.5

Throughout his life Edward Bloom has always been a man of big appetites, enormous passions and tall tales. In his later years, he remains a huge mystery to his son, William. Now, to get to know the real man, Will begins piecing together a true picture of his father from flashbacks of his amazing adventures.

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup, Jessica Lange, Helena Bonham Carter
Directed by: Tim Burton
Release date: 2003-12-25
6.

Dogville

6.5

A barren soundstage is stylishly utilized to create a minimalist small-town setting in which a mysterious woman named Grace hides from the criminals who pursue her. The town is two-faced and offers to harbor Grace as long as she can make it worth their effort, so Grace works hard under the employ of various townspeople to win their favor. Tensions flare, however, and Grace's status as a helpless outsider provokes vicious contempt and abuse from the citizens of Dogville.

Starring: Nicole Kidman, Harriet Andersson, Lauren Bacall, Jean-Marc Barr, Paul Bettany
Directed by: Lars von Trier
Release date: 2003-05-19
7.

Mystic River

6.4

The lives of three men who were childhood friends are shattered when one of them has a family tragedy.

Starring: Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Kevin Bacon, Laurence Fishburne, Marcia Gay Harden
Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Release date: 2003-10-07
8.

The Last Samurai

6.4

Nathan Algren is an American hired to instruct the Japanese army in the ways of modern warfare, which finds him learning to respect the samurai and the honorable principles that rule them. Pressed to destroy the samurai's way of life in the name of modernization and open trade, Algren decides to become an ultimate warrior himself and to fight for their right to exist.

Starring: Tom Cruise, Ken Watanabe, William Atherton, Chad Lindberg, Billy Connolly
Directed by: Edward Zwick
Release date: 2003-12-05
9.

Lost in Translation

6.2

Two lost souls visiting Tokyo -- the young, neglected wife of a photographer and a washed-up movie star shooting a TV commercial -- find an odd solace and pensive freedom to be real in each other's company, away from their lives in America.

Starring: Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Giovanni Ribisi, Anna Faris, Akiko Takeshita
Directed by: Sofia Coppola
Release date: 2003-08-31
10.

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World

6.1

After an abrupt and violent encounter with a French warship inflicts severe damage upon his ship, a captain of the British Royal Navy begins a chase over two oceans to capture or destroy the enemy, though he must weigh his commitment to duty and ferocious pursuit of glory against the safety of his devoted crew, including the ship's thoughtful surgeon, his best friend.

Starring: Russell Crowe, Paul Bettany, James D'Arcy, Billy Boyd, Joseph Morgan
Directed by: Peter Weir
Release date: 2003-11-14
11.

The Matrix Reloaded

6.1

Six months after the events depicted in The Matrix, Neo has proved to be a good omen for the free humans, as more and more humans are being freed from the matrix and brought to Zion, the one and only stronghold of the Resistance. Neo himself has discovered his superpowers including super speed, ability to see the codes of the things inside the matrix and a certain degree of pre-cognition. But a nasty piece of news hits the human resistance: 250,000 machine sentinels are digging to Zion and would reach them in 72 hours. As Zion prepares for the ultimate war, Neo, Morpheus and Trinity are advised by the Oracle to find the Keymaker who would help them reach the Source. Meanwhile Neo's recurrent dreams depicting Trinity's death have got him worried and as if it was not enough, Agent Smith has somehow escaped deletion, has become more powerful than before and has fixed Neo as his next target.

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Laurence Fishburne, Hugo Weaving, Helmut Bakaitis
Directed by: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski
Release date: 2003-05-15
12.

21 Grams

6.1

This is the story of three gentle persons: Paul Rivers an ailing mathematician lovelessly married to an English émigré, Christina Peck, an upper-middle-class suburban housewife, happily married and mother of two little girls, and Jack Jordan, an ex-convict who has found in his Christian faith the strength to raise a family. They will be brought together by a terrible accident that will change their lives. By the final frame, none of them will be the same as they will learn harsh truths about love, faith, courage, desire and guilt, and how chance can change our worlds irretrievably, forever.

Starring: Sean Penn, Naomi Watts, Benicio del Toro, Danny Huston, Carly Nahon
Directed by: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Release date: 2003-09-06
13.

X2

6.1

Professor Charles Xavier and his team of genetically gifted superheroes face a rising tide of anti-mutant sentiment led by Col. William Stryker. Storm, Wolverine and Jean Grey must join their usual nemeses – Magneto and Mystique – to unhinge Stryker's scheme to exterminate all mutants.

Starring: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Halle Berry, Famke Janssen
Directed by: Bryan Singer
Release date: 2003-04-24
14.

Love Actually

6.1

Follows seemingly unrelated people as their lives begin to intertwine while they fall in – and out – of love. Affections languish and develop as Christmas draws near.

Starring: Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Colin Firth, Laura Linney, Emma Thompson
Directed by: Richard Curtis
Release date: 2003-09-07
15.

Battlestar Galactica

6.0
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After a 40-year armistice in a war between the Twelve Colonies and the Cylons, the Cylons launch a surprise nuclear attack intended to exterminate the human race. Virtually all of the population of the Twelve Colonies are wiped out.
Release date: 2003-12-08
16.

The Dreamers

5.9

A young American studying in Paris in 1968 strikes up a friendship with a French brother and sister. Set against the background of the '68 Paris student riots.

Starring: Michael Pitt, Eva Green, Louis Garrel, Anna Chancellor, Robin Renucci
Directed by: Bernardo Bertolucci
Release date: 2003-09-01
17.

Identity

5.8

Complete strangers stranded at a remote desert motel during a raging storm soon find themselves the target of a deranged murderer. As their numbers thin out, the travelers begin to turn on each other, as each tries to figure out who the killer is.

Starring: John Cusack, Ray Liotta, Amanda Peet, John Hawkes, Alfred Molina
Directed by: James Mangold
Release date: 2003-04-25
18.

The Corporation

5.8

Since the late 18th century American legal decision that the business corporation organizational model is legally a person, it has become a dominant economic, political and social force around the globe. This film takes an in-depth psychological examination of the organization model through various case studies. What the study illustrates is that in the its behaviour, this type of "person" typically acts like a dangerously destructive psychopath without conscience. Furthermore, we see the profound threat this psychopath has for our world and our future, but also how the people with courage, intelligence and determination can do to stop it.

Starring: Jane Akre, Ray Anderson, Maude Barlow, Chris Barrett, Michael Moore
Directed by: Mark Achbar
Release date: 2003-09-10
19.

Peter Pan

5.8

In stifling Edwardian London, Wendy Darling mesmerizes her brothers every night with bedtime tales of swordplay, swashbuckling and the fearsome Captain Hook. But the children become the heroes of an even greater story, when Peter Pan flies into their nursery one night and leads them over moonlit rooftops through a galaxy of stars and to the lush jungles of Neverland.

Starring: Jeremy Sumpter, Jason Isaacs, Rachel Hurd-Wood, Lynn Redgrave, Richard Briers
Directed by: P.J. Hogan
Release date: 2003-12-25
20.

The Fog of War

5.8

Using archival footage, United States Cabinet conversation recordings, and an interview of the 85-year-old Robert McNamara, THE FOG OF WAR depicts his life, from working as a WWII whiz kid military officer, to being the Ford Motor Company's president, to managing the American Vietnam War, as defense secretary for presidents Kennedy and Johnson.

Starring: Robert McNamara, Errol Morris, Fidel Castro, Barry Goldwater, John F. Kennedy
Directed by: Errol Morris
Release date: 2003-12-09

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