So recently, TimeOut London published a list of 100 Best Romantic Movies that they collected by surveying various famous actors and directors. There were some interesting entries that I agreed and disagreed with, some obvious, some not so much.
Since all I seem to be doing is spinning my wheels these days when it comes to even marginally original ideas, I challenged myself to come up with my own list. I don’t like rom-coms. Nor do I like sappy lovey-dovey movies. But when I read the list, and thought about it for awhile, I realized that a lot of my favorite movies are actually pretty romantic. Or at least I think so.
Some Interesting Facts about my list you may or may not notice:
- It’s got not one, but two Jane Austen adaptations.
- Also two John Hughes-related movies.
- Lots of angst.
- It’s debatable whether most people would consider two or even maybe three of them to be “romantic” but I do so they’re on the list.
- I like old movies
- None of the films were made after the 1990’s
So here it is, and I actually made an attempt to rank them in order. And yes, there are eleven. Also I placed a (*) next to movies that are also on the TimeOut list.
It’s Preminger’s film noir classic, a murder mystery, not a romance you say. Well, that’s where you’d be wrong. Or at least not exactly right…
2. Party Girl
A girl on the Lower East Side just wants to dance to House Music so what happens when a new falafel cart guy shows up and why does the Dewey Decimal System have anything to do with anything?
“What’s up buttercup?””The rent. And I’m not paying.”
“Can I have a falafel with hot sauce, a side order of Baba Ghanoush and a seltzer, please?”
When I watched Gigi over and over again as an eleven-year old in Texas, I had absolutely NO CLUE what the story was really about. Then again, I was listening to Prince’s Lady Cab Driver on repeat so it probably wouldn’t have made much of a difference.
3. Pretty In Pink
See this post for more details. But in the meantime here’s a song from the soundtrack:
4. The Princess Bride
“As you wish was all he ever said.”
5. Wuthering Heights (1939)
Not any other adaptation of Wuthering Heights THIS ONE only. Olivier and Oberon. I really liked Andrea Arnold’s new version a lot, but when it comes down to it, this is the Cathy and Heathcliff that matters.
6. Black Orpheus
A yearly tradition in our family, I was always surprised to find out that so many of my friends had never heard of it. Greek tragedy in Brazil. The African Diaspora. People who looked like me not speaking English or Spanish. Being beautiful all over my tv screen. It mattered. A lot.
I still wonder why I’ve always had a soft spot for the villainess. It’s actually not so surprising.
There’s so many reasons for this to be here, but it makes it just cause of Paul Rudd.
8. Wings of Desire*
For some reason I thought that twenty years later I’d think it was overwrought and corny. I don’t.
9. Some Kind of Wonderful
I would bet cash money that this movie would never get made today. Not with this ending. In a way, I’m kind of conflicted about the fact that Some Kind of Wonderful and Pretty and Pink happened when I was a teenager. Because while on the one hand it’s cool that the weirdo girl gets the guy, and that’s why I love them, middle-aged me sometimes wonders if maybe they lied to me.
Also, Eric Stoltz.
10. His Girl Friday*
It was between this one and Bringing Up Baby and the decision was soooo hard to make because I adore Katherine Hepburn. But it came down to this one cause of the quick banter, and the witty repartee’. And Rosalind Russell’s damn hats. So these two are newspaper reporters and they’re divorced but they just can’t shake each other.
11. Persuasion (1995)
I’d rank this higher if it didn’t leave me utterly shattered. Out of all of the movies on this list, Persuasion connects with me the most personally. So you think it would be #1, or at least #2. It’s not that I don’t enjoy it, I do, but this adaptation of the novel, like the novel itself, is too hard, even with the second chance, the happy ending. Because I suspect that’s the part Austen added to make the rest go down more easily. Cause the rest was the truth.