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The Best Movies of 2004

Updated September 4, 2020 12.1k votes 712 voters 24.7k views144 items

List RulesOnly movies released in theaters in 2004.

A list of the best movies of 2004, from dramas like Crash to critically acclaimed films like Sideways. The '00s were a decade where Hollywood thrived with new stars and big blockbusters and 2004 movies were no exception. Some of the best movies of this year are some of the best teen, coming of age, adventure, comedy movies, and dramas in history. These famous films on here are very memorable and had audiences on the edges of their seats, and still pack a punch so many years after they were first released. You shouldn't be too surprised by the movies listed on here.

As stated before, some of the best movies of the decade were released in 2004. Who could forget The Aviator with Leonardo DiCaprio, Million Dollar Baby with Clint Eastwood and Hilary Swank, and of course, Uma Thurman in Kill Bill Vol. 2? And let's not forget about Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell and Christina Applegate in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgandy either.

The best and most popular movies of 2004 featured some of the top and biggest stars in the movie business. Whether it was the aforementioned stars continuing their success or the breakout performances featured in Shaun of the Dead, or established stars like Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet starring in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and Natalie Portman and Zach Braff in Garden State. Some of the best movies of all time were released in 2004. This is the ultimate list of the best movies that came out in 2004, which shouldn't feature the best movies of 2003. Vote and re-rank this list according to how you think the best movies of that year should be reflected.

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  • 26
    Sideways
    79
    63

    Sideways

    Sandra Oh, Virginia Madsen

    Directed byAlexander Payne

  • 27
    Finding Neverland
    82
    55

    Finding Neverland

    Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet

    Directed byMarc Forster

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  • 28
    The Butterfly Effect
    81
    63

    The Butterfly Effect

    Ashton Kutcher, Amy Smart

    Directed byJ. Mackye Gruber, Eric Bress

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  • 29
    The Village
    73
    44

    The Village

    Bryce Dallas Howard, Sigourney Weaver

    Directed byM. Night Shyamalan

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  • 30
    Ray
    77
    55

    Ray

    Kerry Washington, Jamie Foxx

    Directed byTaylor Hackford

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  • 31
    Howl's Moving Castle
    77
    27

    Howl's Moving Castle

    Akihiro Miwa, Akio Ōtsuka

    Directed byHayao Miyazaki

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  • 32
    Hotel Rwanda
    36
    11

    Hotel Rwanda

    Nick Nolte, Joaquin Phoenix

    Directed byTerry George

  • 33
    Crash
    74
    64

    Crash

    Sandra Bullock, Brendan Fraser

    Directed byPaul Haggis

    More Crash 

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  • 34
    The Machinist
    65
    52

    The Machinist

    Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh

    Directed byBrad Anderson

  • 35
    Meet the Fockers
    80
    68

    Meet the Fockers

    Robert De Niro, Barbra Streisand

    Directed byJay Roach

  • 36
    The Day After Tomorrow
    92
    84

    The Day After Tomorrow

    Emmy Rossum, Jake Gyllenhaal

    Directed byRoland Emmerich

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  • 37
    Downfall
    35
    16

    Downfall

    Alexandra Lara, Bruno Ganz

    Directed byOliver Hirschbiegel

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  • 38
    Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle
    56
    46

    Directed byDanny Leiner

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  • 39
    Before Sunset
    53
    51

    Before Sunset

    Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy

    Directed byRichard Linklater

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  • 40
    The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
    59
    54

    The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

    Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray

    Directed byWes Anderson

  • 41
    Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

    Directed byBrad Silberling

  • 42
    Miracle
    51
    35

    Miracle

    Kurt Russell, Patricia Clarkson

    Directed byGavin O'Connor

  • 43
    The Terminal
    75
    82

    The Terminal

    Catherine Zeta-Jones, Tom Hanks

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

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  • 44
    Team America: World Police
    67
    53

    Team America: World Police

    Matt Stone, Trey Parker

    Directed byTrey Parker

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  • 45
    The Manchurian Candidate
    31
    20

    The Manchurian Candidate

    Meryl Streep, Liev Schreiber

    Directed byJonathan Demme

  • 46
    The Passion of the Christ
    68
    66

    The Passion of the Christ

    Monica Bellucci, Jim Caviezel

    Directed byMel Gibson

  • 47
    Night Watch
    38
    10

    Night Watch

    Anna Semenovich, Jeanna Friske

    Directed byTimur Bekmambetov

  • 48
    Secret Window
    59
    62

    Secret Window

    Johnny Depp, Maria Bello

    Directed byDavid Koepp

  • 49
    Ocean's Twelve
    25
    11

    Ocean's Twelve

    Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts

    Directed bySteven Soderbergh

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  • 50
    I Heart Huckabees
    55
    38

    I Heart Huckabees

    Naomi Watts, Isla Fisher

    Directed byDavid O. Russell

    More I Heart Huckabees 

    #23 of 51 Great Quirky Movies for Grown-Ups#8 of 70 The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made