This video made me incredibly happy when I saw it posted on Facebook, so I had to share, but it also got me thinking about my all-time favorite movies about love… and not storybook love. Love as it really is–unpolished, messy, often tragic, doesn’t always end perfectly, but sometimes is better than you could have planned it. In the spirit of the holidays, here are ten films that celebrate love in it’s many forms and make greats gifts–stocking stuffers, anyone–or great movie nights with the one(s) you love.
500 Days of Summer (from $2.99, Amazon: Amazon Instant, DVD, Blu-Ray) – The couple which inspired this list of course had to be first. PARTIAL SPOILER ALERT This movie has a great twist at the end that makes you question whose love story is this? And there is a Hall and Oats tribute that is not-to-be-missed.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (from $2.99, Amazon: Amazon Instant, DVD, Blu-Ray) – Incredibly esoteric but I love the idea that even though you know that you will make mistakes and there will be heartache, the experience of loving another is worth doing it all over again. Some call that insanity, I think it’s fate.
Love, Actually (from $7.99 Amazon: DVD, Blu-Ray) – This is such a fantastic story of the lives of a group of people woven together so beautifully. The Liam Neeson role and the moment he had with his son at the end is for the books.
Before Sunrise and Before Sunset Set (from $12.99, Amazon: DVD) – These films are a stiff dose of reality when viewed back-to-back, but I really loved them. Before Sunrise the characters meet when they are fresh-faced youngsters with time to kill and you anticipate there will be a future meeting and happy ending. Before Sunset is the second chapter where you see there was a less-than fairytale ending (thank GOD I found myself thinking). She’s a bit of a mess, he’s unhappily jaded and the world feels it’s evolved as it should until…
The Giant Mechanical Man (from $5.99, Amazon: Amazon Instant, DVD) – Decisions, decisions… Jena Fischer is a struggling zoo worker in this beautiful story about trying to figure out what you want in life and love.
The Bridges of Madison County (from $7.70, Amazon: DVD) – One of the only films I have ever seen that did the book justice. Also, it is as much a story about unconditional love of your children as it is about romantic love and the choices we make for them. Also, Meryl Streep is in it–‘nuf said.
It’s A Wonderful Life (from $9.99, Amazon: DVD) – The holiday classic about realizing you have the life you never knew you always wanted.
The Color Purple (from $14.99: DVD, Blu-Ray) – I remember seeing this movie as a kid and immediately describing it as a love story…and my friends thinking I was crazy (we were pre-teens, a love story is a romance). No, this is the unconditional love story of Celie and Nettie, and how “nothing but death” would keep them from each other–doesn’t that sound like a vow?
Brave (from $3.99, Amazon: Amazon Instant, DVD, Blu-Ray) – This movie gave new meaning to the term “Mama Bear.” I bawled watching it, but in the end, you can cast a spell and turn your mother into a grizzly, she will love you just the same and forgive you.
Life is Beautiful (from $9.43, Amazon: Blu-Ray, DVD) – The desire to protect your children is innate, this movie is heartbreaking and shows this instinct at it’s most primal. It’s also beautiful storytelling.
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