The Chief asks an intriguing question: What's the most important year in American cinema in the last 20 years. His friend says 1993. He says 1999.
The Brawler, as the headline suggests, picks a different year. Largely because he still remembers staggering out of the dark theater into daylight after seeing Reservoir Dogs. Now, really, the Brawler is more a Bob le Flambeur man when it comes to heist fims and his favorite film of the year was The Best Intentions. But the performances of Reservoir Dogs; the pacing; the invention; the slicing and dicing of the storytelling; the soundtrack; the reveling in film reverences (at the time enjoyable, two years later fricking annoying); the energy: it wasn't anything the Brawler, or he suspects many viewers at the time, was prepared for. Its influence on pop culture and the look/feel/and vocabulary of films to follow were profound and legitimized the commercial potential of this thing "independent cinema."
And there were a few other good and not-so-good movies that year, as noted in comments over at The Chief's home.