Every decade of movies seems to have some kind of defining characteristics. Whether it’s the 1970s that gave us the Vietnam-damaged visions of the future, or the 1990s’ gen-X slacker smart-ass inspired films, it’s always kind of interesting to try and get to the bottom of a decade’s psyche through its movie output.
And although the 2000s are relatively close, there’s enough there to make some snap judgements on this decade that gave us foreign ultra-violence, big budget disasters and enough sci-fi weirdness to spark an online casino revolution.
The 1990s’ most defining movie was probably Pulp Fiction, and Quentin Tarantino followed on from the wise-cracking and the gore with Kill Bill that featured so much sword-inspired violence and plot twists that it wouldn’t fit into a single film. And with plans for a third instalment of Kill Bill, it looks like we won’t be seeing the last of Uma Thurman’s iconic outfit.
And violence was definitely a central theme of the Zack Snyder-directed 300 that used the latest computer gimmickry to portray its Spartan warriors in a weirdly futuristic light. Computer technology thankfully evolved throughout the decade from George Lucas’ clumsy use of CGI for the Star Wars updates.
The updates of Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and Salvation also suffered as a result of lumpen scripts and lousy CGI, but the franchise found new life as a Euro Palace slot game where gamers could hunt down some towering progressive jackpots amidst a range of Arnie-inspired themes and motifs.
Another movie franchise that struggled through the 2000s was Jurassic Park III that was executively produced by Steven Spielberg. However this also got a new gaming future at Euro Palace that was thankfully a lot more involving than the relatively humdrum movie sequel.
With the major titles falling into formulaic fare, most movie buffs looked abroad for their cinematic entertainment. Japan proved to be hugely influential with the ultra-violent Battle Royale competing with Tarantino for the highest death count, whereas Spirited Away proved to be Studio Ghibli’s animated masterpiece with a surreal blend of childhood whimsy and nightmarish fantasy.
Surreal themes were also to be found in Guillermo del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth, that on the surface looked like a kid’s film, but featured enough brutal violence and ghoulish monsters to keep adults interested. Whereas Donnie Darko provided enough confusion for cinema audiences that it has become something of a textbook for film student.
So although we may have seen some of cinema’s most iconic characters only find success in online casinos, there were plenty of weird and wonderful movie triumphs to help make the 2000s a cinematic decade to remember.