Valentine’s Day is a day when women can watch romantic movies with their significant other and not have to worry about him whining about chick flicks. Or, at least it should be. If you are a woman who wants to watch a movie about love on the day of love, I have chosen ten of my favorite romantic movies to make a list of the Top 10 Valentine’s Day movies. These are in order of my favorites with the exception of Valentine’s Day as it will not be released until two days before the holiday. I thought I would include it for those lucky enough to go to the theater when the holiday arrives. The rest of the movies are classics but good to watch when in the mood and everyone who is in love on Valentine’s Day is in the mood. Well, most of us thirty-something women are.
10) Valentine’s Day (2010)
Valentine’s Day is a movie with one of the largest all-star ensemble casts in history. Valentine’s Day is a lot of stories within the story and they all intertwine for Valentine’s Day. An example of the “story within a story” approach is a female army officer (Julia Roberts) goes on a plane from Iraq to Los Angeles and meets Holden (Bradley Cooper)-a man whose lover is a closeted football player (Eric Dane). Other A -list members of the cast are: Jessica Alba, Patrick Dempsey, Jennifer Garner, Anne Hathaway, Shirley MacLaine, Emma Roberts, Taylor Lautner, Taylor Swift, Joe Jonas, Ashton Kutcher, Topher Grace and many more. Valentine’s Day is worth watching for the all star cast alone.
9) Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind stars Jim Carey, Kate Winslet, Elijah Wood, and Kirsten Dunst. A couple who were once former lovers decides to have their memories of each other erased when they break up. Clementine does this first and then Joel has the same procedure done. The film takes place in Joel’s mind. A woman named Mary (Kirsten Dunst) who had an affair with the head of the company has her memories of him erased, learns what happened, and sends records to the clients who underwent the procedure. By the end of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Joel and Clementine are back together as a couple. I love this movie because it shows true love will always win out no matter what.
8) Moonstruck (1987)
Moonstruck was one of the biggest hit movies in 1987. Cher, Nicolas cage, and Olympia Dukakis are in the movie. Moonstruck is set in New York where Loretta (a 37 year old woman) is an accountant for a business. Loretta’s boyfriend Johnny proposes and she accepts but when he is gone on a trip Loretta falls in love with his brother Ronny. Eventually Johnny returns from his trip to learn that Loretta had an affair with his brother. Johnny tells Loretta he can’t marry her so Ronny proposes. I like this move because true love will find a way no matter what the complications.
7) You’ve Got Mail (1998)
You’ve Got Mail stars Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. Joe (Hanks) and Kathleen (Ryan) do not like each other in real life but do by email and letter. I like this movie because I think it is something a lot of people have experienced. My grandma told me she didn’t like my grandpa at first. I experienced something similar with someone I first dated as well. Bad first impressions tend to linger. When they write to each other, their true selves are revealed and when they realized it was someone they didn’t like before then they didn’t automatically dismiss the other person. Love should look deeper and the two characters did in this movie.
6) Casablanca (1942)
Casablanca is the tale of a wonderful romance starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, and Paul Henreid. The story is set during World War II. Rick must choose love or helping his former lover and her husband escape. Rick runs a gambling den and nightclub. He encounters papers that would help Ilsa (his former lover) and her husband travel freely through Europe. Ilsa and her husband Laszlo want to travel to America. IIsa finds Rick and tells him when they were romantic together she thought Laszlo was dead. Laszlo knows IIsa loves Rick and asks him to take her with him to safety. Rick decides to help Laszlo and IIsa instead and he kills a man who tries to intervene. Ilsa was a very lucky lady because both men loved her with Laszlo willing to give her up to get her to safety and Rick committing murder to ensure she was safe. I love this movie because it shows love from both perspectives of the men and Rick obviously cares more about IIsla than himself.
5) Ghost (1990)
Ghost stars Patrick Swayze as Sam, Demi Moore as Molly, Tony Goldwyn as Carl (the killer), and Whoopi Goldberg as Ona Mae Brown. Ghost won many academy awards and deserved every one of them. I was twelve years old when it came out at theaters and did not think a lot of it but as I grew up and learned what love is it became one of my favorites. Sam and Molly are in love when Sam is shot by a man. Sam learns after his death that the man was hired by his good friend Carl and his death occurred over money. Sam becomes afraid for Molly who Carl believes has access to the money. Sam remains on earth to protect Molly and with the help of psychic Ona Mae Brown he does.
4) 50 First Dates (2004)
50 First Dates stars Adam Sandler and Henry and Drew Barrymore as Lucy. Henry is a womanizer who meets Lucy, an art teacher. Henry and Lucy fall head over heels in love in spite of Lucy having permanent memory loss. Lucy was in a car accident and believes every day is the date of the accident. Henry at first does not realize she has memory loss but Lucy’s father tells him. 50 First Dates is one of my favorite movies because both parties are taking a risk in their love. Lucy has to take that chance in believing he is her true love each day and Henry goes through a lot to be sure Lucy is safe and comfortable by filming the key moments of their lives. Lucy watches the filmed footage each morning to be able to remember Henry and keep their relationship going.
3) The Notebook (2004)
The Notebook stars Ryan Gosling as Noah and Rachel McAdams as Allie. Noah and Allie meet and fall in love in the 1950’s. The beginning of the movie shows an elderly man reading a notebook of memories to an elderly woman who has no memories. Later in the movie, it is revealed the elderly woman is Allie and the elderly man is Noah. When Allie and Noah fall in love, her parents are against the romance between them. Allie and Noah break up and Noah regrets it. He writes Allie a letter every day and all letters go unanswered. When Noah returns to the area, Alien can’t believe it is him but her life is complicated because she is engaged to another man. She ultimately breaks it off with this man and marries Noah. At the end of the movie, Noah has been in the hospital with a medical emergency but he goes to see Allie anyway. The ending is enough to make the cold hearted cry as they talk about “leaving” (or dying) together. The next morning medical personnel find them in the same bed, hands held, and deceased. This movie is phenomenal. I think most husbands and wives want to be together always. The ending showed that death is not the end and that is a beautiful theme.
2) Titanic (1997)
Titanic stars Leonardo Dicaprio as Jack and Kate Winslet as Rose. Who hasn’t seen this movie? It is phenomenal plus. Set during the historical event of Titanic ship sinking, Rose is onboard with her fiancée. She should be enjoying the wealthy life but is not. When she tries to jump off the boat, Jack talks her out of it. Jack is a steerage passenger and he’s not the type of man Rose’s mom believes she should be in love with. Rose’s fiancée realizes her love affair with Jack and as the ship is going down he tries to kill him. Rose stays with Jack even to the point of the ship sinking. Jack gives Rose one of the few things to float on so her body temperature will not drop and cause hypothermia. In doing this, Jack floats in the water and dies of hypothermia. Titanic was so touching it’s hard to write about without tearing up. When Rose is rescued, she takes Jack’s last name even though they were never married. I love this movie as it is about love never dying. The elderly Rose talks about Jack when she’s over 100 years old as tenderly as she did when she was very young. Besides, who can forget the scene of Jack and Rose making love in the car onboard the Titanic? Hot! Hot! Hot!
1) Gone With the Wind (1939)
Gone with the Wind stars Vivian Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara and Clark Gable as Rhett Butler. Gone with the Wind begins with Scarlett as a young woman in love with Ashley Wilkes (played by Leslie Howard). Scarlett is obviously naïve when it comes to love but is heartbroken when Ashley marries Melanie Wilkes (Olivia De Havilland). At the BBQ before the wedding, Scarlett notices Rhett Butler and he notices her as well. He is the only one who knows of her love for Ashley and when he resurfaces in her life after she marries and becomes Melanie’s brother Charles’ widow, it is clear he really noticed her. Scarlett continues not to realize Rhett’s love and in so doing she falls in love with him herself. After her second husband Frank Kennedy dies, she accepts Rhett’s proposal of marriage but the situation does not get better as she is too in love with the money. Scarlett overlooks Rhett so much that by the time she realizes her love for him he doesn’t believe it and leaves her. Though Gone with the Wind doesn’t have the traditionally happy ending of love movies, it is exceptional. Most women watching it can feel Scarlett’s pain and relate to her loss on some level. It is unknown whether the author of the book the film is based on (Margaret Mitchell) would have made a sequel as she was killed by a car in the 1940’s and this adds to the effect of the movie. Every female who has seen the movie can dream Rhett and Scarlet got back together and lived happily together but whether or not that would have happened is unknown.
(The rest from memories)