Fall is here.
It’s the most romantic season. Falling leaves, gentle wind rustling your hair and playing with your skirt. What’s better than starting the season with a good romantic movie?
Starring Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore and Whoopi Goldberg, Ghost was the highest grossing movie of 1990. The story revolves around a murdered banker, Sam (Swayze), and his girlfriend, artist Molly (Moore). When Sam learns his death is the result of more than just a mugging, he seeks help from a reluctant psychic (Goldberg). Despite all the odds, Sam vows to protect Molly even though they are in different realms. The iconic scene of Sam and Molly playing with phallic clay, their fingers entangled together, Unchained Melody playing in the background, has mesmerised so many.
Goldberg won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, and the film also snagged an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Swayze and Moore both received Golden Globe Award nominations for their performances. An Asian remake of the movie was released in 2010, starring Seung-Heon Song and Nanako Matsushima.
The Bridges of Madison County (1995)
Directed by Clint Eastwood, and starring Meryl Streep and the director himself, The Bridges of Madison County is a brilliant love story with magnificent National-Geographic scenery. The story starts with a pair of siblings going through the contents of their recently deceased mother, Francesca (Streep). A four-day affair that she had many years ago with a photographer, Robert (Eastwood), is divulged to the siblings. Francesca almost ran away with Robert but gave the thought up because of the impact it would have on her family. The raining, silent farewell scene could not be better played with so much heartache and reluctance.
Typically, a successful romance movie’s formula involves handsome, beautiful, young actors. But The Bridges of Madison County relies on two veteran actors to deliver flawless performances to convey a love that is so certain and comes just once in a lifetime. Streep’s acting is astonishing and lifts the movie, while Eastwood performs his usual magic of drawing the audience into a seemingly boring movie that eventually melts the audience’s heart.
Me Before You (2016)
Adapted from the best-selling novel of the same title, the movie is just as successful as the novel.
The movie’s tagline is "live boldly". Indeed.
Perhaps many would find similarities between Lou in the movie and Bridget in Bridget Jones Diary. Besides the not-the-typical-pretty-plumpish-girl hooks up with good-looking-guy destiny, they share a spunky and never-to-admit-defeat spirit, and live their lives boldly.
Lou (Emilia Clarke) is the new caregiver to Will (Sam Claflin) who has become paralysed in an accident. While Will reacts coldly to her initially, his contempt slowly gives way to a bond and feeling that they develop for each other as time passes. However, in the background, the six-month agreement that Will has with his parents looms close and threatens to unravel all the efforts that Lou puts into getting Will to live with the attitude of his former life. Clarke has been involved with Games of Thrones since 2011, while Claflin has been in The Hunger Games franchise, Snow White and the Huntsman, and The Huntsman: Winter's War.
From the pure joy of a blossoming friendship to falling in love and finally, a heart-wrenching ending, Thea Sharrock’s feature directional debut brings across the essence of the book brilliantly. This is also aided by the fact that the author of the book, Jo Jo Moyes, participated in the screenplay adaptation.
The Notebook (2004)
Another book adaptation, The Notebook is an American romantic drama film directed by Nick Cassavetes. The movie is based on the 1996 novel of the same name by Nicholas Sparks.
The film stars Ryan Gosling as Noah, and Rachel McAdams as Allie, a young couple who fall in love in the 1940s. However, because of their social differences, the poor but passionate Noah is soon separated from the rich and young Allie. While Noah gives Allie that sense of freedom, Allie’s parents think otherwise. Their free yet seething love needs to conquer many obstacles along the way.
Gosling and McAdams play their roles so fiercely and honestly, and with such spontaneous performances, that audiences root for them to come together. The Notebook insists on an eternal and true love that satisfies the many romantics at heart.