A scene from 'M:I-2'
"M:I-2": Tom Cruise hangs around
A collection of some of the best quotes, unsung performances and memorable moments from year 2000 movies.

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Previous years (1995-1999)
Overlooked performances, great quotes and show-stopping scenes that helped define this year's cinema

By Rob Blackwelder

As I take copious notes while watching the movies I'm going to review, I inevitably accumulate a loose smattering of random scribbles about this performance and that hilarious one-liner from picture after picture, all year long.

Occasionally such notices make it into my reviews. More often they end up as scraps I discard after failing to find room for them before the final "Save" on my computer.

Then I stew over not being able to share them with readers. What if examples of just how funny the dialogue is would make one more person see "O Brother, Where Art Thou," the best picture of the year?

So by way of resolution, here's an affectionate retrospective of some of the most memorable moments, best quotes and unsung performances of the movies of 2000 -- called the Forget-Me-Nots:

Delicious dialogue

"You're nothing but a malcontent who knows how to spell."
 -- the Abbe Coulmier (Joaquin Phoenix) to the Marquis De Sade (Geoffrey Rush) in "Quills"

"Technique is nothing more than failed style"
 -- Stephen Dorff as the deranged terrorist/director "Cecil B. Demented"

They're called boobs, Ed. "What makes you think you can just walk in there and find what we need?"
"They're called boobs, Ed."

 -- Albert Finney and Julia Roberts in "Erin Brockovich"

"Your mom is kinda freaking me out."
 -- Rock star Billy Crudup after being chewed out by a teenage journalist's overprotective mom (Frances McDormand) in "Almost Famous"

"Are you one of those middle-aged guys who's tired of his marriage and thinks maybe a beautiful young thing could help him out?"
 -- Beautiful young thing Neve Campbell to neurotic hit man William H. Macy in "Panic"

"They never completed kindergarten because they were drafted!"
 -- Tracey Ullman belittling Woody Allen's wannabe-bank-robber pals in "Small Time Crooks"

"Frenchy, I'm gonna get violent!"
"What, with your hernia?"

 -- Bickering marrieds Allen and Ullman, ibid.

"What does he like?"
"14-year-old girls."
"We wanna get out of this town in one piece. Get him half a 28-year-old girl."

 -- A director (William H. Macy) and a P.A. discussing how to deal with a narcissistic movie star (Alec Baldwin) in "State & Main"

A scene from 'State & Main' "Hey, everybody needs a hobby!"
 -- Baldwin, waving off concerns about the same proclivity for underage girls, ibid.

"It's not a lie, it's a gift for fiction."
 -- William H. Macy, ibid.

"It's my duty to please that booty."
 -- Samuel L. Jackson in "Shaft"

"Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?"
 -- John Cusack in "High Fidelity"

"The script girl? I'll eat her later!"
 -- Willem Dafoe snarling with glee as the method actor Max Schreck (who may be a real vampire) in "Shadow of the Vampire"

"Vernon here's got a job! Vernon's got prospect! He's bona fide!"
 -- Holly Hunter explaining to George Clooney why she's divorced him to marry a straw-hatted ponce in "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"

"And stay out of the Woolworth's!"
 -- Shopkeeper who kicks Clooney out when fisticuffs break out against said ponce, ibid.

"You two are just dumber than a bag of hammers!"
 -- George Clooney, ibid.

"I'm diggin' this, yo! This could be bigger than Amos and Andy!"
 -- White TV exec Michael Rapaport showing how ghetto he really isn't in "Bamboozled"

A scene from 'The Whole Nine Yards'
"The Whole Nine Yards": Watch out, Bruce. That girl's a scene stealer!

Great under-appreciated performances

• Amanda Peet as the effervescent assassin-wannabe dental hygienist in "The Whole Nine Yards"

• Jennifer Connelly as the ghostly girlfriend in "Waking the Dead" and the strung-out girlfriend "Requiem for a Dream"

• Allison Janney as the acerbic soap opera producer in "Nurse Betty"

Owen Wilson • The always ad-libbing Owen Wilson as an incompetent outlaw in "Shanghai Noon" and the impossibly perfect ex-fiancé in "Meet the Parents"

Catherine McCormack as the spoiled stage star reluctantly making a movie in "Shadow of the Vampire"

• Timothy Spall hamming it up as Don Armando in "Love's Labour's Lost"

• Lucas Black as a 150% gen-u-ine teenage Texan cowboy in "All the Pretty Horses"

• Donald Sutherland as the subtly abusive and dysfunctional father of nervous hitman William H. Macy in "Panic"

Three faces of Anna Paquin • The suddenly alluring Anna Paquin as a private school flirt in "Finding Forrester," an apprehensive superhero in "X-Men," and a hothouse flower groupie in "Almost Famous"

• The suddenly talented Melanie Griffith as the tantrum-throwing kidnapped movie star in "Cecil B. Demented"

• Uncanny beanpole Crispin Glover, known for playing mostly screwball sissies, as the dapper, silent and lethal martial arts henchman in "Charlie's Angels"

• The ebulliently goofy Steve Zahn and Dechen Thurman playing Rosencrantz and Guildenstern as scruffy bar flies who kiss up to the new king in the hipster version of "Hamlet"

Gazoo-ntight • The incomparable Alan Cumming playing a dual role as the Great Gazoo and pouty rock 'n' roll rooster Mick Jagged in "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas"

A scene from 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon'
"Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon": Zhang puts her foot in somebody else's mouth

Flashes of 24-carat cinema

• Gravity-defying, porcelain-looking teenage beauty Zhang Ziyi kicking the butts of 30 desert marauders at once in "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon"

• While introducing himself to a handful of hobos in "O Brother," slick-talking prison escapee George Clooney gets unceremoniously yanked out of a moving freight train box car in mid-sentence when one of the guys to whom he's chained slips on the tracks outside while trying to get on board.

"Charlie's Angel" Drew Barrymore -- incognito as part of a sexbomb racetrack pit crew clad in cleavage-flaunting stars-and-stripes leather jumpsuits -- distracts a bad guy's chauffeur by seductively licking the steering wheel of his car.

• During a sleep-over at another cheerleader's house, "Bring It On" star Kirsten Dunst tries to flirt with the girl's brother (Jesse Bradford) while brushing her teeth when they end up in the bathroom at the same time. There's more spark, charisma and chemistry in that cute, simple, silent 60 seconds than in a dozen Freddie Prinze, Jr. movies.

• The finger-tip clinging rock-climbing opening of "M:I-2"

• Whitebread dork Jim Carrey talking smack with his three black sons in "Me, Myself & Irene"

• Christian Bale and his Armani army symbolically measuring their, er, members by comparing business cards in "American Psycho"

Madden & Summerall • John Madden & Pat Summerall announcing play-by-play of the first kiss between Keanu Reeves and Brooke Langton in "The Replacements"

• Grumpy old astronauts Clint Eastwood, Donald Sutherland, Tommy Lee Jones and James Garner drop trou for a physical in "Space Cowboys"

• Michelle Rodriguez chillingly stares down the camera in the opening shot of "Girlfight"

• The bent-over-backwards "spider walk" sequence restored to the "Exorcist" reissue

• High-strung yuppies Parker Posey and Michael Hitchcock take their neurotic Weimeraner to therapy and apologize for having sex in front of him in "Best in Show"

• A bus full of hippie hard-rockers and groupies give in to the groove and sing giddily along to Elton John's "Tiny Dancer" in "Almost Famous"

• Savion Glover and Tommy Davidson apply blackface to their shame-engraved kissers in "Bamboozled"

A scene from 'Saving Grace' • Craig Ferguson and Brenda Blethyn, stoned out of their gourds and peeling with laughter in "Saving Grace"

• Director Mike Figgis lampoons himself in "Time Code" by having an uppity performance artist (Mia Meastro) pitch the experimental concept for the very picture you're watching to a Hollywood exec. The reaction: "This is the most pretentious crap I've ever heard!"

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