aka The Frazzled Mom
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So I started with a “top 10” list for romantic movies, thinking I’d have a tough time coming up with even ten. But after thinking about it for a while, I realized there were quite a few that I’ve watched more than once, probably more than a few times.
Starring: Heath Ledger, Julia Stiles, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Larisa Olevnik
Genre: Romantic Comedy Year: 1999
An adaptation of Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, we find Cameron hoping to ask Bianca Stratford to date. But Bianca’s father won’t allow Bianca or her older sister, Kat (aka the shrew) to date. Bianca gives the impression that, once her sister dates and her father lifts the “no date” rule, Cameron will be the one she’ll want to go out with. So Cameron hires Joey, the good-looking troublemaker on campus, to work towards dating Kat. Kat, as the shrew, doesn’t make it easy.
The best part of this movie is the back and forth verbal jousting between Joey and Kat, that and Heath’s solo to Kat in the stadium. The movie was meant more for teens/early twenties audience, but I still enjoy it from time to time.
Walter Stratford “Hello, Katarina. Make anyone cry today?”
Kat Stratford “Sadly, no. But it’s only 4:30.”
Starring: Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan
Genre: Romantic Comedy Year: 1993
Sam Baldwin and his son, Jonah, have been living in Seattle, struggling to manage after the death of Sam’s wife, Maggie. Concern for his dad, Jonah calls into a radio program, where he speaks with Dr. Marcia on his dad’s lack of a love life and how much they miss his mom. Realizing Jonah got out of bed and was on the phone, Sam takes over the call and is pulled into the conversation where he ends up revealing just how much he misses Maggie and the things he loved about her.
This is a cute movie that offers a nod to An Affair To Remember, which is a cute scene between Tom Hanks and Victor Garber. Another good thing about this movie is the soundtrack: great song picks. Sometimes, I just watch the movie to listen to the music.
Dr. Marcia: “Tell me what was so special about your wife?”
Sam: “Well, how long is your program? Well, it was a million tiny little things that, when you added them all up, they meant we were supposed to be together… and I knew it. I knew it the very first time I touched her. It was like coming home… only to no home I’d ever known… I was just taking her hand to help her out of a car and I knew. It was like… magic.”
This radio clip is played as advertisement for Marcia’s program. Having listened to it live while in the car and then again at home, Annie is inexplicably draw to the man behind the story. But she’s in a relationship with Walter and had accepted his proposal. Walter is more practical than romantic. Annie feels stuck, the relationship stagnant. After watching ‘An Affair To Remember’ again, Annie and her friend come up with the idea to write a letter to Sam. When the letter is received, along with countless others, Sam blows them all off. Jonah decides to respond to Annie on behalf of his father, suggesting they meet at the top of the Empire State building on Valentine’s Day.
Jay “Well, this is fate! She’s divorced, we don’t want to redo the cabinets, and you need a wife. What do they call it when everything intersects?”
Sam Baldwin “The Bermuda Triangle.”
Starring: Gerard Butler, Hillary Swank
Genre: Romantic Drama Year: 2007
After the death of her husband, Gerry, Holly is struggling to continue living. He was her one true love and the loss of him is nearly too great for her to bear. From what her family and friends see, Holly has remained cooped up in her apartment, rarely going out. On her 30th birthday, a letter arrives, one that Gerry had written before his death. From there, Holly will be lead on a journey, but her late husband’s design, in order to help her discover and celebrate herself as an individual, to move on with her life and to really start living.
A little heavy in parts, emotionally, but this is a sweet love story. The best part for me were the places the movie was filmed: Ireland!
Gerry Kennedy “Every morning I still wake up and the first thing I want to do is to see your face.”
Starring: Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison
Genre: Romantic Musical Year: 1964
A wager is struck between Higgins, a misogynistic and snobbish phonetics professor, and his friend, Professor Pickering. The terms: Higgins boasts of his ability, that he can turn a flower girl of low income, Eliza, into a woman able to be presents to high society. If anyone within the high society circles suspects who she really is, the bet is lost and Pickering wins. Though Eliza complains from the beginning, her determination aids Higgins in his goal.
I love music, so when it came down to picking top favorite romantic movies, I had to include at least one musical. There are so many to choose from! In this case, there were some memorable and funny scenes, such as the race track. Though Audrey Hepburn’s voice was dubbed by Marni Nixon, it was still an enjoyable movie. The witty remarks between characters is amusing. Another plus, those fans of Sherlock Holmes will get a rare treat as there is a scene with Jeremy Brett.
Professor Higgins: “There even are places where English completely disappears; in America they haven’t used it for years.”
Professor Higgins: “You might marry, you know. You see, Eliza, all men are not confirmed old bachelors like myself and the Colonel. Most men are the marrying sort, poor devils. And you’re not bad-looking; you’re really quite a pleasure to look at sometimes. Not now, of course, when you’ve been crying, you look like the very devil; but when you’re all right, and quite yourself, you’re what I would call… attractive.”
Starring: Billy Crystal, Meg Ryan
Genre: Romantic Comedy Year: 1989
Harry and Sally have been friends for years. Seeing others in relationships, the two begin to wonder “what if”. Both fear that intimacy would ruin their friendship. As it turns out, they do share a moment, only for their friendship to suffer in the process. Is that the end? There is an obvious attraction between them, but has their relationship been ruined by the intimacy? As Harry has been quoted: “What I’m saying is – and this is not a come-on in any way, shape or form – is that men and women can’t be friends because the sex part always gets in the way.”
I had no idea, but I find myself gravitating to this movie often. Billy Crystal, to me, makes this movie. He subtle humor elicits chuckles throughout the movie, though one amusing seen takes place at a diner. One other plus, the soundtrack is great. I love Harry Connick, Jr.
Harry Burns: “I love that you get cold when it’s 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you’re looking at me like I’m nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. And it’s not because I’m lonely, and it’s not because it’s New Year’s Eve. 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.”
Starring: Kenneth Branagh, Emma Thompson, Denzel Washington, Robert Sean Leonard, Kate Beckinsale
Genre: Romantic Comedy Year: 1993
Lovers Hero and Claudio were to be married in one week. During that time, they conspired with Don Pedro to trick Benedick, an arrogant and determined to be single forever bachelor, and Beatrice, his favorite verbal sparring victim, to fall in love with one another. But Don Jon attempts to end to wedding plans with the accusation of Hero’s infidelity. Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing is a fun romantic comedy that I could easily watch over and over again. In fact, I know I’ve seen it easily more than ten times. Thanks to Branagh’s brilliant directing, this is a favorite for me, up there with Hamlet.
I loved the witty banter between Benedick and Beatrice (Branagh and Thompson were so good together). Plus, anything with Robert Sean Leonard is a plus for me. This is one of my all time favorite Shakespeare plays, besides Hamlet.
Memorable Quotes(I can’t pick just one!):
Beatrice “I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me.”
Don Pedro: “I shall see thee, ere I die, look pale with love.”
Benedick “With anger, with sickness, or with hunger, my lord. Not with love.”
Starring: Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman
Genre: Romantic Comedy Year: 1995
After Mr. Dashwood dies, his second wife and her three daughters are left poor by the rules of the inheritance. Elinor, the oldest, is the polar opposite of her younger sister, Marianne, when it comes to love. Elinor is very reserve and introspective, whereas her sister wears her heart on her sleeve and is overly vocal about matters of the heart. As Marianne pursues the affections of one man, little does she know that another looks on her with longing. And when her heart is broken, it is that same man that comes to her aid and rescue.
When I think of romance, especially in literature, I cannot help but think of two authors: Austin and Bronte. This movie has one of my favorite actors, Rickman, as the noble Colonel Brandon.
Edward Ferrars: “I come here with no expectations, only to profess, now that I am at liberty to do so, that my heart is and always will be yours.”
Starring: Timothy Dalton, Zelah Clarke
Genre: Romantic Drama Year: 1983
Jane Eyre is a plainly dressed governess who arrives at Thornfield Hall for employment as tutor of Adele. She becomes intrigued and attracted to Thornfield’s master, the dark and mysterious, Mr. Rochester. As the attraction between them is sparked and begins to burn, a dreadful secret comes to the surface and threatens to pull them apart.
A slow burning love often can be the most fun to watch or read. In this case, it is extremely slow between Jane and Edward, but once it starts – wow. I love this movie and have watch it more times than I care to admit.
Jane Eyre: “Do you think I am an automaton? — a machine without feelings? and can bear to have my morsel of bread snatched from my lips, and my drop of living water dashed from my cup? Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain, and little, I am soulless and heartless? You think wrong! — I have as much soul as you — and full as much heart! And if God had gifted me with some beauty and much wealth, I should have made it as hard for you to leave me, as it is now for me to leave you. I am not talking to you now through the medium of custom, conventionalities, nor even of mortal flesh: it is my spirit that addresses your spirit; just as if both had passed through the grave, and we stood at God’s feet, equal — as we are!”
Starring: Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, James Stewart
Genre: Romantic Comedy Year: 1940
A rich woman’s awaits her wedding, when a tabloid reporter (Connor), photographer (Imbrie) and her ex-husband (Dexter) arrive. Following a night of heavy drinking in celebration of the upcoming wedding, Tracy learns the truth about herself and the expectations from those around her. She has an important decision to make on the type of person she wants to be.
Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn are a great pair (almost as good as Hepburn and Tracy). I nearly put Adam’s Rib in place of this movie. I love this movie and the remake, High Society, which has great music (Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra and Louis Armstrong…you can’t go wrong!). The witty dialogue, the confusion, the romance, all of it is just plain fun to watch.
Uncle Willie: “Awww…this is one of those days that the pages of history teach us are best spent lying in bed.”
Starring: Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr
Genre: Romantic Drama Year: 1957
Nickie and Terry are both involved in separate relationships. During a cruise voyage, the two meet and fall in love. Believing their love is the kind to last a lifetime, they make a plan. The two will work to break off from their current engagements and, in six months’ time, meet at the Empire State Building. But when Terry doesn’t show, Nickie is left to wonder if their love was truly meant to be.
My all time favorite romance movie, which I suppose is cliche. The chemistry between the two is believable. The tragedy within the story, heartbreaking. But the end, heartwarming. A must see for anyone who enjoys romance.
Kenneth Bradley: “I really hope you’ve found happiness, and if you’re ever in need of anything, like someone to love you, don’t hesitate to call me.”
There are still so many more to see! Classics such as Giant, Rebel Without A Cause, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, and more! Yes, Desiree, Bed of Roses as well.
Next up: Top 10 Movies Men Will Sit Through