My Perfect Valentine’s Day Films

So as promised here is a few of my favourite romantic films, when I can’t help but carried away with it all.

First up, Before Sunrise and its sequel Before Sunset, these films are a must for romantics everywhere. In Before Sunrise Jesse, an American guy (Ethan Hawks), meets a French girl Céline (Julie Delpy), on a train in Vienna and decide to spend the day together before they go their separate ways. The film follows a series of conversations between these two as they wonder around the city. What makes this such a joy to watch is that the dialogue between them feels so natural.  It captures that moment where you meet someone and just connect with them. Maybe it doesn’t last long, maybe it lasts forever but what they feel at that time is real and it’s perfect.

Before Sunset picks up 9 years after they first met and we see what happened to them and if they did ever meet up after the end of the first film like they promised. Hawkes and Dupley knew their characters so well and had such a strong idea of where they would end up that the actors were involved in the scriptwriting process. The beauty of these characters is that they are flawed people, so real and you root for them the whole way. A third film Before Midnight is out this year and I can’t wait.

One of my favourite comedies is When Harry Met Sally. Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan (remember when she was in every romantic comedy going?) make a loveable pair in a film that asks whether men and women can ever just be friends without sex getting in the way.  There are many memorable scenes which are still hilarious even on repeated viewing including Ryan’s infamous fake orgasm scene. The script by the late Nora Ephron is a gem ranging from the funny…

“Had my dream again where I’m making love, and the Olympic judges are watching. I’d nailed the compulsories, so this is it, the finals. I got a 9.8 from the Canadians, a perfect 10 from the Americans, and my mother, disguised as an East German judge, gave me a 5.6. Must have been the dismount.”

…to the unashamedly romantic…

“I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”

I watch this film and all my cynicism melts away, mostly because I’m laughing so hard.

If I want a good cry then it’s hard to beat The Notebook.  Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams are perfect as the young couple in the 40’s falling in love. It’s wonderfully narrated by James Garner as Duke who is telling the story from the notebook to a fellow nursing home resident played by Gena Rowlands. I can’t watch it without bursting into tears.

There are plenty more romantic films that I enjoy from British rom-coms like  Love Actually and  Four Weddings and a Funeral, to more quirky ones like The Princess Bride which has so many quotable lines and memorable characters that I couldn’t even start to list them now-maybe in a another post.  But I shall stop now before I tear up just thinking about the ending of The Notebook.



Filed under Opinion

2 responses to “My Perfect Valentine’s Day Films

  1. Yes Before Sunrise and Sunset are great. Such awesome films. Like the other ones you mention too. One of mine is Notting Hill and going back a bit, His Girl Friday and Roman Holiday.

    • Thanks, I love the Before films, and glad the quality continues with Before Midnight. Your choices are very good. I miss the kind of old Hollywood banter shown in films such as His Girl Friday with a strong female character.

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