21 Iconic Movies That Are Celebrating Their 20th Anniversaries In 2021

14 minutes, 35 seconds Read
Rate this post


Hello friends! It’s 2021 — which 100% sounds like a fake year every time I write it down — and I am old! As! Bones!


Look! Here’s a GIF of me celebrating the New Year!

Anyway, I like to torture myself at the start of each new year by looking up what beloved movies are celebrating big anniversaries, and Y’ALL — there are SO MANY CLASSICS turning 20 this year!

New Line Cinema

So — in chronological order of their original release dates — here are 20 genuinely ICONIC movies that will be celebrating their 20th year as part of the pop culture zeitgeist in 2021:


Save the Last Dance

View this video on YouTube

Paramount Pictures

Release Date: Jan. 12, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: After her mother is killed in a tragic accident, a teenage ballet dancer’s life changes course when she is sent to live with her father in Chicago.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: This movie has everything! Great music! Sweet romance! A big Juilliard audition scene! Kerry Washington in one of her first big screen roles! Literally! Everything!


The Wedding Planner

View this video on YouTube

Sony Pictures Releasing

Release Date: Jan. 26, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: A type-A wedding planner falls for a type-B pediatrician after he rescues her from a freak dumpster accident — only to find out he’s the fiancé of her current client. It’ll make you laugh, cry, and wonder what the actual heck Jennifer Lopez’s skincare routine is, because oh my god, this woman looks the exact same.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Um…it’s just plain delightful? Truly a great rainy afternoon rom-com. But be warned: Do yourself a favor and buy a big ol’ bag of M&M’s before you put it on, because you’re 100% going to be craving them while watching it. You’re welcome.



View this video on YouTube


Release Date: March 16, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: “Explaining” Christopher Nolan movies is outside of my pay grade! It’s too hard! Just watch it!

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: It’s the movie that really started Christopher Nolan’s “What the absolute heck” brand of mind-mess movie and, if you’re lucky enough to NOT have had the ending spoiled for you, it’s pretty great! Just don’t zone out at any point or you’ll be very confused. Also, lots of tattoos!


Spy Kids

View this video on YouTube

Dimension Films

Release Date: March 30, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: Two delightful children are shocked to discover their otherwise normal, boring parents are literal spies. So, when their parents are in trouble, there is no one left to save them but the kids. So they become spies. They become spy kids.



Bridget Jones’s Diary

View this video on YouTube

Miramax Films

Release Date: April 13, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: Bridget Jones does her best to navigate love, sex, and ugly sweater parties — but ends up finding all three of them in the most unlikely of places: Mr. Darcy (IE: Colin Firth at his Colin Firth-iest).

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Holy heck was 2001 a great year for rom-coms! This one’s simple, silly, and the humor still holds up! (Complete side note, but: This trailer is H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S. Please, watch it. Oh my god, trailers in the early ’00s were too much.)



View this video on YouTube


Release Date: April 22, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: SomeBODY once told me…

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Listen — I assume you’ve already rewatched this movie a million-billion-trillion times, so I see no reason to pitch it to you. It’s just dumb fun. And by “dumb,” I mean, “Look at my dog chasing their own tail…god, they’re dumb. I love them so much” kind of dumb. You get it? Yeah, you get it.



View this video on YouTube

UGC-Fox Distribution

Release Date: April 25, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: A manic pixie dream girl we can all actually get behind walks us through her whimsical life, which is filled with crème brûlée, gnomes, and riding bikes with handsome gentlemen.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: This film is still (as of today) the highest-grossing French film to ever be released in the US. The story is great and the film as a whole is genuinely a marvelous watch, BUT — if for no other reason — watch it to fall in love with Audrey Tautou. She’s fantastic in this. Semi-unrelated, but: This HAIRCUT on HER?! It’s almost TOO CUTE. It’s almost RUDE how cute it is!


The Mummy Returns

View this video on YouTube

Universal Studios

Release Date: May 4, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: Bisexual dream throuple Rick, Evie, and Evie’s eyebrows are back 10-ish years after the events of the first film — this time with their precocious young son, Alex, in tow. When Alex decides it’d be a great idea to put on some ancient jewelry, he’s condemned to death unless he aides everyone’s favorite juicy mummy, Imhotep, in finding the lair of the Scorpion King. The “Scorpion King” is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. I am this movie’s target audience.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: It’s the sequel to the greatest action/adventure movie ever made…what else could you possibly need to know? Also, the scene where Anck Su Namun and Evie fight each other? That was for us. That was for the bisexuals.


Moulin Rouge!

View this video on YouTube

20th Century Fox

Release Date: June 1, 2001

Why It Still Holds Up: A sad boy with a typewriter falls for a courtesan in the middle of what can only be described as a rainbow-jukebox-explosion.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: This is one of those movies where, if you love it, you LOVE it and if you hate it, you really, REALLY hate it. Either way, I think you should rewatch it because it’s absolutely WILD and, however you feel about it after all of this time — Ewan McGregor can BELT IT OUT and should be in more musicals starting, like, yesterday.


Lara Croft: Tomb Raider

View this video on YouTube

Paramount Pictures

Release Date: June 15, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: Based on the beloved video game, a much-less-triangular-boobed version of Lara Croft came to life for the first time on the big screen in this camp-tastic feature film. There’s action! There’s adventure! There’s a pre–James Bond Daniel Craig!

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Have I mentioned that I’m bisexual in this post yet?


Spirited Away

View this video on YouTube

Toho/Studio Ghibli

Release Date: June 20, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: After entering a fantasy realm where a witch turns her parents into literal pigs, a young girl must do whatever it takes to escape back into our human world. “Pig parents.” “Pig-rents?” Anyway, it’s awesome.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: If you haven’t already watched this, first off: How dare you? Second: Stop reading this post (bookmark it, though, please come back, I’ll miss you) and find some way to watch it immediately. The animation is unmatched. The music is goosebumps-inducing. It’ll make you feel positively all of the feelings there are. You’ll thank me later (when you come back to the post, since you bookmarked it, remember?).


The Fast and the Furious

View this video on YouTube

Universal Pictures

Release Date: June 22, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: So, I’ve never actually seen this movie. Or any of these movies? Which is very off-brand for me? But I DID have a poster for this one in my room as a teenager for some reason? I don’t know why, looking back. Probably because…hot people? Anywho, I think it’s about cars?

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: I know what you’re thinking: Why would I include a movie I’ve never seen on this list. WELL, the answer is: HOW COULD I NOT?! It’s the film that launched a thousand prequels and sequels. I’m literally renting it after I finish writing this post!


Legally Blonde

View this video on YouTube


Release Date: July 13, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: An overqualified, hard-working, celebrated student follows her garbage boyfriend to Harvard Law School after he dumps her out of the blue for positively ridiculous reasons. After realizing said boyfriend is garbage, she becomes the best possible version of who she truly is. Iconic. ALSO, isn’t it wild that this and Bridget Jones’s Diary came out in the same year and BOTH involve women wearing Playboy Bunny outfits to parties at inappropriate times?! WILD.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: It’s pretty rare you see a movie that time has only been kinder and kinder to, but this is an A+ example. When this came out, many wrote it off as some goofy, flash-in-the-pan rom-com. But 20 years later, the discourse has turned to celebrate it for what it is: A self-aware, feminist comedy about how the way a woman looks directly affects how seriously she’s taken, and how no one should compromise who they are to fit the molds of others. In closing: Elle Woods for life.


The Others

View this video on YouTube

Warner Sogefilms

Release Date: August 2, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: A lady lives alone in a giant house with her two creepy-as-all-heck children who physically can’t go out into sunlight or they’ll die. Seemingly out of nowhere one day, they are terrorized by a family of ghosts. Big, huge yikes.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: This movie deserves more love, period. It’s SO well done, and it also just so happens to have my favorite plot twist of all time — so perhaps I’m a touch biased. If you haven’t seen it, watch it. If you haven’t seen it in a while, watch it again.


The Princess Diaries

View this video on YouTube

Buena Vista Pictures

Release Date: August 3, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: A girl who doesn’t know she’s a princess finds out she’s a princess. She’s also, like, really rude to Julie Andrews for one full act of the movie, which I’m pretty sure is a federal offense?

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Y’ALL. If you don’t already love this movie, I don’t understand you. It’s wonderful, feel-good viewing. NOTE: If you have M&M’s left over from your The Wedding Planner screening, make sure to save them AND order a pizza for when you put this one on.


Training Day

View this video on YouTube

Warner Bros. Pictures

Release Date: Sept. 2, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: This film follows two LAPD narcotics officers through the streets of Los Angeles over a very chaotic 12-hour period. Also, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg are there.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Look — Denzel Washington is exceptional in absolutely everything he’s in, but he truly EARNED this Oscar. He is INCREDIBLE in this. Plus, this is the movie that gifted us his delivery of the iconic line, “KING KONG AIN’T GOT SHIT ON ME,” which is just *chef’s kiss*.


Hedwig and the Angry Inch

View this video on YouTube

New Line Cinema

Release Date: Sept. 12, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: Ya know what? Here. Just click on that link and listen to the title song from the film. It does a far better job explaining the setup than I would and, frankly, I don’t think you’d believe me if I told you, anyway. (But also, the song starts with a loud scream, so, adjust your headphones.)

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: A little fun fact about me that no one asked for: I love musicals. Oh, what’s that? You want another fun fact? Okay: This is my favorite movie musical ever made. For real, real. It’s just so, so good. The music is incredible, the message of self-love and acceptance is timeless, and the humor (even 20 years later) never gets old. If you haven’t had the pleasure, watch it, I implore you.


Donnie Darko

View this video on YouTube

Newmarket Films

Release Date: Oct. 26, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: LOL, “plot info.”

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: It’s a cult classic and, even 20 years later, people STILL aren’t totally confident as to what it’s about. So, why do I think you should watch or rewatch it now? So you can tell ME what it’s about. Please? It’s been 20 years…


Monster’s Inc.

View this video on YouTube


Release Date: Oct. 28, 2001

Why It Still Holds Up: Monsters exist in a realm in which the only way they can get electricity is to terrify children and collect their screams. One day, two best friends struggle to put that thing (a child) back where it came from (Earth) or so help me (them).

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: This movie is so freakin’ good. Like, just sit for a second and think about it. It’s SO funny. It’s SO sweet. It’s Pixar at it’s finest.


Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

View this video on YouTube

Warner Bros.

Release Date: Nov. 4, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: “YER A WIZARD, HARRY!” “I’m a WHAT?!” That’s it. That’s the plot.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Unpopular opinion(?): I actually think the first two Harry Potter movies are the best ones, because they’re the only two that seemed to understand the level of pure camp needed to make the books work as movies. Also, this movie is HILARIOUS to rewatch as an adult who saw it as a kid. They’re so little! Such baby! Very small! Tiny beings!


The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

View this video on YouTube

New Line Cinema

Release Date: Dec. 19, 2001

A Lil’ Plot Info: A lot of gentlemen are fighting over a very whatever-looking piece of jewelry that’s, like, a big metaphor for power or something.

Why I Think It Deserves A (Re)Watch: Calm down, I’m just being an butthead. I saw this movie no less than five times in theaters as an impressionable 10-year-old. I was OBSESSED with this series of films growing up. It’s one of the main reasons I went to film school, and this is where it all began. I watched the extended editions every single year of my life — two to three times a year — from elementary school through high school. No, I didn’t get dates until I was in college and no, I don’t see how those two things could be related in any way. In short, it’s perfect. I love it.

So, there ya have it! Which of the movies listed is YOUR favorite? Which 20-year-old movie will you for sure be giving a rewatch this year? Share all of your thoughts in the comments below! Happy New Year!


Source link

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.