1. Letters From Iwo Jima -- Top Movies of the Decade
Hollywood has been making war movies since D.W. Griffith, but you seldom if ever get a sense of how it feels. You may in the first 20 minutes of Spielberg's "Saving Private Ryan"; then that movie reverts to genre form. But Clint Eastwood's "Letters From Iwo Jima" accomplishes this feat: You get war in all its horror, boredom and grit--and from the point of view of our country's enemy, so any empathy is hard-earned. With unsettling brilliance, the film captures war as experienced by soldiers lost in its fog, as a grinding, sickening, numbing death machine. In Eastwood's version, heroism and cowardice are two sides of the same coin, and glory a concept best left to generals and historians.