DAILY DIRT: Has there been a better decade than the ’90s for movies?


Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump

Daily Dirt for Saturday, Oct. 2, 2022

The ’90s were certainly Tom Hanks’ best-ever decade on the silver screen…. Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 411 of The Daily Dirt.

1. In both Friday’s and Saturday’s Daily Dirt I mentioned the 1995 film “Clueless,” which got me thinking, which led to some research, which eventually led to this statement: The 1990s were a heckuva decade for movies, far better, I think, than most of its predecessors.

Here’s my 10 favorite flicks from the 1990s. See if you agree:

  • 1. “Schindler’s List” (1993): Pulsating, riveting, haunting. I still think of certain scenes from this film. Ralph Fiennes and Liam Neeson were magnificent.
  • 2. “Forrest Gump” (1994): Of all the great movies Tom Hanks has been associated with, this is the greatest.
  • 3. “Clueless” (1995): If a movie’s good enough, it’s worth rewatching, and I’ve probably seen this movie a dozen times. It never gets old … or less funny. The highlight of Alicia Silverstone’s career.
  • 4. “Ghost” (1990): More than 30 years later, I’m still not sure what was better — the movie itself or the soundtrack.
  • 5. “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” (1997): I can count on one hand the number of movies I have laughed out loud at in the theater. This is one. Mike Meyers was never funnier.
  • 6. “Titanic” (1997): Still one of the best endings in cinematic history. 
  • 7. “Sleepless in Seattle” (1993): Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, the rom-com duo of the decade.
  • 8. “You’ve Got Mail” (1998): See comment above.
  • 9. “Reservoir Dogs” (1992): For me, this is Quentin Tarantino’s finest effort ever. It was far better — and bloodier — than I ever expected.
  • 10. “Saving Private Ryan” (1998): This makes four Tom Hanks films in the top 10. Not a bad 10-year swing for Tom Terrific.

Honorable mention: “Jerry Maguire” (1996), “Blair Witch Project” (1999), “Silence of the Lambs” (1991), “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” (1991), “Thelma and Louise” (1991).

2. The MLB regular season is coming to a close, which is always kind of sad.

I know, the playoffs are right around the corner. But the end of the regular season signals the end of a six-month friendship you have built since Opening Day. We’ve all endured the ups and downs of our favorite teams, watched numbers build, averages rise and fall and … and then it’s over, until next April.

The following thoughts sum up this time of year, I think, for many baseball fans:

Gold medal: “The saddest day of the year is when baseball season ends.” — Tommy Lasorda.

Silver medal: “The other sports are just sports. Baseball is love.” — Bryant Gumbel.

Bronze medal: “There are only two seasons — winter and baseball.” — Bill Veeck.

3. So … you want to go to New York City, eh?

Just a little travel advice. The city is ranked No. 1 in the U.S. as far as rat population is concerned. “Officially,” there are “about 2 million rats in New York City,” according to a variety of reports.

Unofficially, estimates are as high as 32 million.

Judging by the number of people in NYC, the overall size of the area we’re talking about, etc., and I think I’m leaning more toward that 32 million figure.

Conditions that contribute to the rat infestation include accumulation of garbage, waste material, water and garbage that is not kept in tightly covered rat-resistant trash cans – all of which are commonplace in New York City.

Rats’ abilities include squeezing through holes the size of a quarter, leaping four feet sideways, falling five stories without injury, treading water for three days (adult rats), and chewing through pipes and cinder block.

The average NYC brown rat is 16 inches long and weighs about one pound, though some do grow to 20 inches and weigh up to two pounds. They usually require only one ounce, or 28 grams, of food and water each day to live.

Personally, I have no desire to visit New York City. Never did. Never will.

Steve Thought O’ The Day – Out of pure curiosity, I wanted to know where the biggest rats in the world are found. Apparently, there are species in the Indonesian jungles that grow as large as 13-plus pounds, or the size of some terrier dogs. Yep, no plans to ever visit there either. 

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. Rats are the worst.

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