Why the ’90s Was The Best Decade For Pop Culture Part 1: Movies and Music

Upon reading an article by Mike Hayes on CNN, I realized that the 1990s contributed a great deal to pop culture.  While other eras made an incredible influence in popular entertainment, the 1990s was the decade that greatly shaped pop culture today.  This decade was the best when it came to movies, music, television, and video games.

Movies in the ’90s had an impact on pop culture in a grand way.  Among the movies that came out during this period were Wayne’s World, Clueless, Titanic, William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, and Jurassic Park.  The ’90s became the decade of the independent film with directors like Kevin Smith who made Clerks by selling his comic book collection and maxing out some credit cards.  The film cost over $27 thousand to make and grossed over $3 million.  During the summer of 1999, an independent film called The Blair Witch Project was released and captivated audiences with its fabricated urban legend.  The film became a critical success earning almost $250 million dollars worldwide.  The independent film was not the only aspect that made the ’90s the best decade for movies,though.  Advances in CGI (computer-generated imagery) were made during this period.  Films like Jurassic Park, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Twister, Forrest Gump, and Titanic set the bar in CGI.

The ’90s was also a great decade when it came to music.  On May 15, 1990, the first single from Mariah Carey, “Vision of Love”, debuted and set the course for Mariah to become a powerhouse in the music industry.  During this decade, there was a revival of singer-songwriters.  The most prominent among these was Alanis Morrisette, who came on the scene in 1995 with her multi-platinum album, Jagged Little Pill.  New genres and sub-genres of music were created in ’90s.  In 1992, the band Nirvana released their album, Nevermind, and created the grunge culture into the alternative music scene.   Several bands benefited from the increased interest in the alternative/ grunge genre like Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, R.E.M., and the Goo Goo Dolls.  The ’90s was also known in music as the decade of the crossover artist.  Country singer Shania Twain spearheaded this trend in 1998 when the third single off of Come On Over, “You’re Still the One”, entered the pop and international markets.  The single peaked at number two on Billboard’s Hot 100.  This paved the way for other country artists such as Faith Hill to crossover.

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