Wednesday, February 9, 2011

My Guide to Romance Films

As Valentine’s Day soon dawns upon us, here is a list of 14 romantic movies that you could watch with that special someone.  There are plenty other classic romances out there (Ghost, Dirty Dancing, It Happened One Night), but these are my favourites.
Listed Chronologically:

City Lights (1931)
Charlie Chaplin’s silent romantic comedy wherein he falls in love with a blind girl who sells flowers and tries to ‘woo’ her.  This is the film which inspired the nearly-silent love story in Wall-E.  I believe this is one of the greatest movies ever.

The Ghost and Mrs Muir (1947)
A woman moves into a seaside cottage to find that it is inhabited by a swarthy-romantic-sea-captain-ghost. It is oddly believable and has a wonderful score.

Roman Holiday (1953)
A classic Audrey Hepburn movie where she is a Princess who runs away to secretly live among the common folk and falls in love with a reporter (Gregory Peck).  Not quite Aladdin, but definitely one of the best “royalty wants to be a commoner” films.

West Side Story (1961)
Essentially the story of Romeo and Juliet told in New York City with feuding gangs, amazing musical numbers, dazzling dancing and fantastic cinematography.

The Princess Bride (1987)
You either grew up with this movie or you didn’t.  You may find it adorable and can quote every line, or feel nauseated from the cornball dialogue. Either way, it’s a fantastical fantasy adventure about the devotion of love.

Sleepless in Seattle (1993)
The pinnacle of the modern romantic comedy with America’s two sweethearts: Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.

Titanic (1997)
An obvious choice. Good ol’ romance during a disaster.  My first “date” movie.

The Wedding Singer (1998)
80s nostalgia and a sweet and innocent Sandler doing a lot of singing. Works for me!

Amelie (2001)
Even quirkier than The Princess Bride, this is one of the best looking movies and has a cute little story about a girl in Paris who decides to help out others, only to find that she helps herself to find love.

Punch Drunk Love (2002)
How I managed to put 2 Adam Sandler movies into a romantic list is fascinating, but you can’t ignore this movie.  From one of my favourite directors, Sandler plays a serious role which is essentially a riff on his earlier immature characters.  A very odd movie in all the right ways.

Love Actually (2003)
A true romantic British movie that I actually enjoyed.  The story involves multiple couples dealing with love in semi-interrelated stories.

The Notebook (2004)
Probably THE romantic chick-flick of the past decade.  Very schmaltzy and over-sentimental, but it works.

Once (2006)

A very small film that is a musical shot in a documentary style.  It follows two nearly broke musicians in Dublin who fall in love with each other while writing music together.  Beautiful songs and a very understated film.

Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)
A great story about a man who is born in an old man’s body and as he gets older, his body gets younger; and the woman who loves him struggles to deal with this.