Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, and for many of us this means a romantic night out poured into our best Freakum Dress. But alas, some of us are single, and the some of us have kids but no available babysitters. So we spend Valentine’s Day at home munching on take-out, with a bottle of wine and a few movies. But not just any old movie will do on Valentine’s Day. This is an evening for snuggling and watching something that gives you the warm fuzzies. The kind of movie that makes you want to fall in love with love.
Over the years, I have compiled a list of swoon-worthy cinema. The type of movies that make me stare at my husband with the googly-eyes.
THE TOP 10 MOST ROMANTIC MOVIES
1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon—The story is about two warriors in pursuit of a stolen sword but this movie is so much more than that. It is visually stunning and, after the first few minutes, you don’t even realize you are reading subtitles. My favorite scene is the sword fight in the bamboo forest when they are magically floating from limb to limb, light as air, amid the lush foliage. The chemistry between Master Li Mu Bai and Yu Shu Lein? It’s palpable. Sigh. I am in love with this movie. Favorite sappy quote: I would rather be a ghost drifting by your side as a condemned soul than enter heaven without you.
2. Brown Sugar—When did you fall in love with hip hop? This is the story of two best friends who are madly in love (but don’t know it yet) and how love and hip hop are intertwined in their lives. This movie is close to my heart because, just like the main characters Dre and Syd, my husband and I started out as friends. Of course, the “thing” I have for Mos Def only slightly influences my decision to add this movie to my list. Favorite sappy quote: I need you to be there for me, just like you asked of me. So I can have tea and eat cucumber sandwiches with the crust cut off!
3. Say Anything—This must might be John Cusak’s best role ever—the underdog falling for the beautiful high school valedictorian. And helllooo, John Cusack holding that boom box, blaring Peter Gabriel’s In Your Eyes over his head outside of Ione Skye’s window?? Major swoon. I wanted to be Ione Skye in that gorgeous white party dress with her beautiful, long, curly hair. She had good hair—the non-frizzy kind. Favorite sappy quote: She’s gone. She gave me a pen. I gave her my heart, she gave me a pen.
4. Dirty Dancing—Back when families had the money to spend a leisurely summer in the Catskills and life held limitless possibilities—this is the setting for Dirty Dancing. The merengue beat, rich old snobs, and Nobody puts Baby in the corner. I love it all! The amazing chemistry between Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey will never grow old. But I’ve always wondered, who really dirty dances that way? Favorite sappy quote: Me? I’m scared of everything. I’m scared of what I saw, I’m scared of what I did, of who I am, and most of all I’m scared of walking out of this room and never feeling the rest of my whole life the way I feel when I’m with you.
5. The Notebook—This movie didn’t make me fall in love with love but it did give me the hots for Ryan Gosling (a whole other story). The Notebook also gave my husband the idea that we are going to die at the same time, holding hands and laying next to one another in an old folks’ home. I’m convinced he’s wrong because we brown people like to keep our elderly at home. So I think the two of us will most likely die together in one of our children’s spare bedrooms…or maybe a trailer out in back. Favorite sappy quote: That’s my sweetheart in there. Wherever she is, that’s where my home is.
6. Legends of the Fall—Such a romantic tale, set in the rugged wilderness, about a woman who is drawn into a family with three handsome brothers and a tragic love triangle. Oh, and Brad Pitt. With long hair—need I say more? I just wish he could stay this way forever, frozen in time. Or Fight Club time. Favorite sappy quote: However long it takes. I’ll wait for you forever.
7. 50 First Dates—A goofy veterinarian (Adam Sandler) falls for a gorgeous, free-spirited girl (Drew Barrymore) who wakes up each morning with no memory of the day before. So every day he has to make her fall in love with him all over again. This is something we should all try to do to keep our relationships fresh! Favorite sappy quote: Being with you is the only way I could have a full and happy life. You’re the girl of my dreams… and apparently, I’m the man of yours.
8. A Walk in the Clouds—This beautifully shot movie is about a young Mexican-American woman who leaves college because she is pregnant with her professor’s baby. She goes home to her traditional family in the Napa Valley, where she meets dreamy Keanu Reeves (a soldier returning from WWII). I love everything about this movie—the way the people lived, and the way they loved and honored their elders and their culture. Favorite sappy quote: She’s like the air to me.
9. Some Kind of Wonderful—This 80’s movie totally made me fall in love with Eric Stoltz (a redhead!). I also loved how cool Watts was—even though this movie came out 24 years ago, her style is still amazing. Wow. Apparently, girls in combat boots, fishnet stockings, and fingerless gloves never go out of style. Favorite sappy quote: The only things I care about in this g*ddamn life are me and my drums and you.
10. Grease—The original high school musical! I don’t care what people say, Summer Lovin’ and Hopelessly Devoted to You are some seriously romantic songs. Those stolen, bittersweet moments on the beach in the beginning of the movie were precious. So were the Pink Ladies and the hand jive. Favorite sappy quote: Men are rats, listen to me, they’re fleas on rats, worse than that, they’re amoebas on fleas on rats. I mean, they’re too low for even the dogs to bite. The only man a girl can depend on is her daddy.
What are some of your favorite romantic movies?