Thursday, 12 February 2009

The Best Valentine Films (that aren't too slushy)

Oh the horror! It's that awful time of year again. But romantic movies don't have to be slushy heaps of cack. My top films for celebrating the sort of never-ending, undying love that transcends all barriers (how's that for a bit of romance, eh?) are:

  • 12 Monkeys - Because how much do you want Madeleine Stowe and Bruce Willis to get it together? Very much indeed! And yet 12 Monkeys is so definitely not slush. Plus it's got Brad Pitt's best performance ever in it. Either this or The Fisher King would keep me happy on Valentine's day. You can't go wrong with a bit of Gilliam.
  • Chocolat - Okay, this one might be a tiny weeny bit girly, what with Johnny Depp looking his absolute sexiest as a dishevelled, bohemian, guitar man. But the boys have got Juliet Binoche to keep them happy, and of course there's the eminently watchable Dame Judi of Dench in the mix too, so everyone can still pretend they're watching a proper grown up film.
  • Amelie - For being such a wonderful story, for being so much fun, for being full of gorgeous colours and scenes, and for having the object of Amelie's affections work on the ghost train, thus providing the most strange but romantic interlude ever when she rides the train for a glimpse of him.
  • The Princess Bride - Because it's guaranteed that anyone unfamiliar with this film will be initially put off by the super-girly title, but will be totally and utterly won over by the brilliantly funny story as soon as they sit down to watch it.
  • Il Postino - Yes it's got poetry and love letters and enforced exile, but it's all in Italian and Spanish which somehow makes it much more upmarket and acceptable.
  • Out of Sight - Because never mind about Valentine's day, this film would make my top 10 any day of the year. It sneaks in here by virtue of being so damn sexy it hurts, but rest assured Out of Sight is no slush-fest. It's just as enjoyable for the less loved up as it is for the romantically entwined. Always a winner in my book.

Well, there's a few just off the top of my head. I could go on, but I'm sure you've probably got your own ideas too, so I'm gonna throw this over and ask for your own fave romantic films that aren't too slushy. What movie will you be settling down to on Saturday?

Image: Jennifer Lopez from Out of Sight, courtesy of MCA/Universal pictures.