It’s that time of year again. Flowers are being bought, chocolates are being consumed and love is in the air. Valentine’s Day is a day many people love and others despise with every ounce of energy they have. If there is one thing everyone can agree on, it is that some of the best movies of all time are about love. Here are the top five best movies to watch on Valentine’s Day this year.
- “The Notebook” (2004)
Most people know “The Notebook” as the universal Valentine’s Day movie, and because of that, I am going to start the list off with it. This Nick Cassavetes flick features Noah Calhoun, played by the charismatic Ryan Gosling, and Allie Hamilton, portrayed by the lovely Rachel McAdams. It is a story about two people who fall in love. I know, you have never seen a movie like that before, but what makes this movie different from the rest is the slow burn leading to an emotional end. You watch all the ups and downs, and by the end (which I will not spoil, of course) you are completely invested in every aspect of the couple’s relationship. It is the household name of romance movies. Make sure and have the tissues on standby for this one.
- “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” (2010)
Another great love story, with not nearly as many tears, is “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World,” which is directed by one of my favorite directors, Edgar Wright. This high-adrenaline romance stars Scott Pilgrim, played to perfection by America’s prince of awkwardness Michael Cera, and his journey to win over the heart of Ramona V. Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead). The only problem is Pilgrim has to defeat Flowers’ seven evil exes. If that does not intrigue you right off the bat, then maybe some great comedy, paired with some infectious music, will do the trick. “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” was one of my favorite movies growing up, and to this day I have such a blast re-watching it.
- “Her” (2013)
Casually enough, in the next movie on my list, Joaquin Phoenix falls in love with his newly-developed operating system in “Her.” Theodore Twombly, played by Phoenix, is a lonely writer who starts developing a relationship with his A.I. system named Samantha (Scarlett Johansson). “Her” is one of my favorite movies of all time, from the acting to the costume design to the message the story tells. Loss is something that everyone on Earth deals with, and director Spike Jonze elevates the movie to a whole new level with some of the most pleasing set designs I have ever seen.
- “Little Women” (2019)
I think “Little Women” is the most underrated movie that came out last year, and and I will take any chance I get to talk about how amazing it is. Director Greta Gerwig, who was recently robbed of a Best Director nomination at the 2020 Oscars, constructs a beautiful story about love, but not the kind that you would think. “Little Women” is centered around how strong love can be among a family, which is something that should take precedence over any relationship. Little Women” has one of the best casts of the year, including names like Saoirse Ronan (Josephine March), Florence Pugh (Amy March) and Timothée Chalamet (Theodore “Laurie” Laurence) just to name a few. It is so easy to fall in love with a movie like this. Gerwig takes a nonlinear story line and ties up all loose ends, and a beautiful score and scenes can bring anyone to tears.
- “Moulin Rouge!” (2001)
Everyone should see this movie. “Moulin Rouge!” has everything that the four movies I have already talked about has, except seeing this movie was the most fun I have ever had watching a film. Christian, played by THE Ewan McGregor, falls for Satine, who is portrayed by the all-time great Nicole Kidman. Any movie from 2001 is almost guaranteed some level of corniness, with this movie holding true to that, but if you just let go and have fun, it makes for one of the best experiences ever. Anyone that is in a relationship, single, or just likes Ewan McGregor can enjoy this movie, and I recommend it to people every time I get the chance. This movie has one of the best soundtracks ever, and I would have no problem watching it every day for the rest of my life.
Featured Illustration: Jae-Eun Suh