Monday, February 14, 2011

Romantic - but not cheesy – movie suggestions?

I was trying to make a mental list yesterday of suitable Valentine’s Day movies. Ones that aren’t overtly Valentine’s Day-ish or over-the-top romantic flicks (like Love, Actually or Valentine’s Day the movie). Also trying to avoid flicks like Life is Beautiful or West Side Story because they make you just want to fall on the nearest pointy object in despair. I like a happy ending, har har.

Here is an unscientific and completely biased list, please post your own suggestions:

Napoleon Dynamite. Awkward and sweet, like love itself. BTW did you ever notice there isn’t a single curse word uttered in this movie?

Princess Bride. A fairy tale with humor and Inigo Montoya. And Andre the Giant!

Casablanca. Ok, I know this is a softball, but it’s a classic. Although he doesn’t get the girl it is still a satisfying ending.

The Illusionist. Surprisingly sensual, and Jessica Biel at her “considerable loveliest” doesn’t hurt.

Say Anything. Lloyd Dobler, with the boom box, Peter Gabriel song. ‘Nuff said.

An Officer & a Gentleman. Debra Winger, Richard Gere, factory scene in which he strides in wearing his military whites and literally sweeps her off her feet.

The Notebook. I wanted to hate this movie, I really did. But Ryan Gosling convinced me, especially in the rain-soaked love scenes.

Sense & Sensibility. One Austen had to make it on this list.

Dirty Dancing. Swayze! No one puts Baby in the corner.

Singin in the Rain. Debbie Reynolds personifies perky and gets her man, putting a bitchy film star in her place in the process. Who can resist Donald O’Connor and Gene Kelly?

Moonstruck. I really don’t enjoy Nicholas Cage’s work so this says a lot. The power of Cher goes a long way of course but this is just a heartwarming story with a big crazy Italian family and lovely beauty shots of New York City.

Out of Africa. I hate myself for putting this one on here, because the love affair doesn’t exactly have a happy ending, but it’s a beautifully complex and frustrating story that always makes me swoon.

So I Married an Axe Murderer. Mike Myers is undeniably charming as the goofy poet and San Francisco resident who falls for the dangerous but bewitching butcher Harriet, who has a bloody past. Great turns by Anthony LaPaglia and Alan Arkin, who for some reason was uncredited in his role.

From Justin to Kelly – just kidding.

Last night, in honor of Valentine’s Day, my significant other was watching a movie about Pancho Villa starring Charles Bronson and Yul Brynner. Muy romantico. Altho Pancho did get married in the movie, while already being married to someone else. Powerful men and all that. Speaking of powerful historical figures, fittingly, Cleopatra was also on last night. Now that’s a sweeping love story on multiple levels. And the best eye make-up in cinematic history.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you all! Now let's put this specious holiday to bed.


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  2. The Notebook, full-on!
    "When I left, it wasn't over, you know."
    "It's STILL not over!"
    Fuck yeah, Ryan Gosling!

    Also, Love and Basketball (awkward dumping of Sanaa Lathan for Monica Calhoun is excruciating).

    Also, In God's Hands (slinky surfer dudes making love to waves, with an erotic soundtrack)