50 Favorite Romances: 36 - 40

Also check out 1 - 56 - 10, 11 - 15, 16 - 20, 21 - 25, 26 - 30, and 31 - 35.You should also check out my sister's list since she's decided to try to make a more awesomer one. You be the judge.

36. Love Actually (2003)

Let's go get the shit kicked out of us by love.
I don't know that I have much to say about this movie except that I almost OD'd on it in college because this movie is so full of warm fuzzies. Some of the storylines fall flat (the one including January Jones's dead eyes), but the Laura Linney/Rodrigo Santoro story KILLS ME every time. Girl, get yourself a hot Brazilian man! Anyway, it's charming, cheesy, and sweet, with just enough surprisingly dirty humor that is works. Plus, Christmas.

37. Strictly Ballroom (1992)

I have to help Wayne with his Bogo Pogo.
When I first saw this movie in the early 2000s, I think it took me a while to realize this movie was set in the early 90s because ballroom fashion is always beyond-the-pale bizarre. Anyway, Scott Hasting (Paul Mercurio) lets his the old guard of the ballroom scene down when I starts dancing his own steps. The only one who believes in him is Fran (Tara Morice), a frumpy beginning dancer. They begin to practice together and fall in love and everyone learns lessons and there are a lot of sparkles. It's frantic enough to be amusing and save a very predictable plot.

38. The Painted Veil (2006)

As if a woman ever loved a man for his virtue.
In college I was a writing tutor, and the most satisfying session I ever had was with a girl writing a psych paper about The Painted Veil. We bonded about how adorable Edward Norton was and all the small moments where he awkwardly shows affection toward the woman he married. I think I eventually told the girl that she needed to cut down her paper to just the key moments in the film that proved her thesis even though it was like killing her children. However, you never have to feel like you're killing your children as you watch Naomi Watts learn to love Edward Norton despite the fact that she was sleeping with Liev Shreiber on the side. Crazy what China and cholera can do for a couple.

39. Corrina, Corrina (1994)

-You know, Billie Holiday does a better version.
-No one's better than Louis.
My sister also included this on her list of favorite romances, so it must be a classic. Corrina (Whoopi Goldberg) becomes the housekeeper to a widower Manny Singer (Ray Liotta) and his selectively mute little girl Molly (Tina Majorino). The Singers are both still mourning the loss of a wife and mother, and of course Corrina helps them learn to be happy and love again. Mostly, I'm always so surprised Ray Liotta is in this movie considering that he's best known for gangster films. Seeing him in a Hawaiian shirt jumping on a pogo stick is a little jarring, but that's okay. I'll allow him to wear cardigans and make up jingles about pudding with an assist from sassy Whoopi.

40. Anastasia (1956)

The poor have only one advantage: they know when they are loved for themselves.
Y'all, I carry a large torch for Yul Brynner. As Bounine (kind of a proto-Dmitiri*), he's strict and always has a plan. He's training lost soul and possibly crazy Anna Koreff (Ingrid Bergman) to act as the presumed-dead Princess Anastasia of Russia to claim money from the Dowager Empress. Things get muddy as Anna starts to believe she is Anastasia, and those around her start to question what's reality as well. In between some rather slowly paced moments, Bounine and Anna share some fiery exchanges and a few flirtatious ones. There's not much of a thread to their relationship, but it works for me. Besides, if it means I get to watch Yul dance, play guitar, and simply just walk across a room, I'll watch it all day.

*The 1997 version of Anastasia just barely didn't make this list. It's basically a romcom with creepy undertones and glossy history.


  1. You should know that your name is still attached to the following quote on a Writing Center quote board: "I have a crush on his [Yul Brynner's] stance in that movie." At least, it was still up when I left two months ago...

  2. I'm so glad that is still posted for the writing center posterity. It's still true today.

  3. Kelsy, I love this blog. Also, my favorite part of The Painted Veil is how Edward Norton's hair suddenly has highlights after sleeping with Naomi Watts. Oh and watching Norton is always delightful.

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