I have nothing against the Notebook. I’ve seen it at least five times and when that one friend completely breaks down and sobs, “I’m a bird too!” during movie night, I don’t roll my eyes because I get it. There’s the kiss in the rain, the 365 letters he wrote her, and the whole she’s-old-money-while-he’s-just-this-poor-shmuck-who-works-at-the-lumber-yard-and-they-are-from-two-completely-different-worlds which is the same argument you can find in Titanic, Romeo and Juliet, and all those other tearjerkers (and in one of my picks below). It just gets to you. And like everyone else, I’m still holding out for a Gosling/McAdams reunion. But these are my personal favorites, and they demand repeated viewings.
(5) Before Sunrise
“I want to keep talking to you, you know? I have no idea what your situation is but I feel like we have some kind of…connection, right?”—Jesse (Ethan Hawke)
Julie Delpy. Ethan Hawke. She’s French and he’s American. They’re both twenty-something who accidentally meet on a train in Europe. They have one day to explore Vienna together. Amazing conversation ensues.
(Note: If you like this, then you have to watch Before Sunset. Oh, and there’s going to be a Before Sunset sequel coming out in 2013.)
“I have a photographic memory. Just give me your number and I’ll remember it.”—Jimmy Doyle (Robert De Niro)
De Niro as a temperamental saxphone player who sucks at picking up Liza Minnelli’s character. Chronicles their relationship over many years. Love this Scorsese’s tribute to 1940s Technicolor musicals.
(3) Blue Valentine
“Can you dance? Can you tap dance?”—Dean (Ryan Gosling)
A pretty bleak film about a married couple who have fallen out of love with each other, but we get tons of flashbacks about how they first met, which makes the ending even more bittersweet.
“I love you. I’ve loved you since the first moment I saw you. I guess maybe I’ve even loved you before I saw you.”—George Eastman (Montgomery Clift)
Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift. Lots of moments where Stevens abuses close-up shots. Enough said.
“It’s me. If I had an extra plane ticket, would you go away with me?”—Su Li-zhen (Maggie Cheung)
Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung are both married to different people. They’re neighbours in a tiny Hong Kong apartment complex who find out their spouses are having an affair with each other.
(Note: The cinematography and soundtrack in this movie is INSANE. And Maggie has at least 50 outfit changes.)
[Cover Photo via nsavides]
[Photos via Ronald Grant Archive, United Artists/DR/ Carlotta Films, Weinstein Company, doctormacro.com]