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Best classic love stories-- what would you pick?


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#1 TopBilled

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Posted 06 April 2017 - 11:27 AM

But this said, I will probably just look at more traditional love stories. At this time, in addition to LOVE AFFAIR and ROMEO AND JULIET, I am leaning towards LOVE LETTERS and THE PASSIONATE FRIENDS.

 

I've been meaning to follow up for folks reading this thread. I did end up covering those four films back in February. My reviews and the comments from other posters can be found in the Essentials forum.


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"The truth? What good is the truth if it destroys us all..?" -- Mady Christians in ALL MY SONS (1948).


#2 TopBilled

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 07:41 PM

Thanks for the feedback Jlewis. I will probably wait to cover some African American films later; and I will do a month on gay & lesbian cinema at some point. The goal in February is to focus on love stories without too much social commentary. 

 

I do think there are "unusual" love stories-- like AN ACT OF MURDER, where Fredric March loves his wife so much he commits euthanasia to end her suffering. There is also something like MY FRIEND FLICKA, which explores the sentimental attachment a boy has with his horse.

 

But this said, I will probably just look at more traditional love stories. At this time, in addition to LOVE AFFAIR and ROMEO AND JULIET, I am leaning towards LOVE LETTERS and THE PASSIONATE FRIENDS.


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"The truth? What good is the truth if it destroys us all..?" -- Mady Christians in ALL MY SONS (1948).


#3 Jlewis

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 07:16 PM

Just pick four that are completely different than each other.

 

You could also break tradition with...

 

...either an interracial or gay relationship too... or both. Most of the positive films of these latter two types have only been made in the last three decades when society became more accepting. Therefore, they may not qualify as "classic". (Unfortunately the old war horses Guess Who's Coming To Dinner and Sunday Bloody Sunday aren't all that "romantic". Their aim was "social commentary". Curiously, I always considered Midnight Cowboy a "bromance" of sorts.)

 

Then there's also Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown. This brings up animated features like the fairy tales Sleeping Beauty and Beauty And The Beast (and you could cover the live-action Cocteau version instead) and the all-doggie Lady And The Tramp.

 

You will have to look for "used" DVDs for '68's version of Romeo & Juliet but there are plenty around that can be quite cheap. You don't get more over-the-top than this! "They are burning up with vitality. Exuberant and playful!"

 

Leonard Whiting only turned 17 when this started filming at the end of June 1967.

 


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#4 TopBilled

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 02:04 PM

I guess I don't have RANDOM HARVEST. This is what I have in the way of classic love stories (in alphabetical order):

 

ALWAYS A BRIDE; ANGEL AND THE BADMAN

 

BREEZY; BRIEF ENCOUNTER

 

THE CLOCK; COME LIVE WITH ME; THE CONSTANT NYMPH; THE COURTSHIP OF EDDIE’S FATHER; CROSS-COUNTRY ROMANCE

 

DESIREE; THE DEVIL AND MISS JONES; DOUBLE HARNESS

 

THE GARDEN OF ALLAH,;THE GLASS SLIPPER; GREEN DOLPHIN STREET; GROUNDS FOR MARRIAGE

 

HEAVEN CAN WAIT; HIGH BARBAREE; HIS BROTHER’S WIFE; HISTORY IS MADE AT NIGHT; HOBSON’S CHOICE; HOLD YOUR MAN; HUMORESQUE; THE HURRICANE

 

I COULD GO ON SINGING; I KNOW WHERE I’M GOING!; IN NAME ONLY; INDISCREET; IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT

 

JANE EYRE; THE JUDGE STEPS OUT

 

THE LAST TIME I SAW PARIS; LOVE AFFAIR (1939); LOVE IS A HEADACHE; LOVE LETTERS; THE LOVES OF CARMEN

 

A MAJORITY OF ONE; MAKE WAY FOR TOMORROW; MARGIE; THE MATCHMAKER; MY LOVE CAME BACK; MY MAN GODFREY (BOTH VERSIONS); MY REPUTATION

 

NEVER LET ME GO; NIGHT SONG; NIGHT UNTO NIGHT; NO TIME FOR LOVE

 

ONE BIG AFFAIR

 

THE PASSIONATE FRIENDS; PORTRAIT OF JENNIE; THE PRINCE AND THE SHOWGIRL; PYGMALION

 

THE REMAINS OF THE DAY; ROMANCE ON THE HIGH SEAS; ROSEANNA MCCOY; ROXANNE

 

SEA WIFE; SENTIMENTAL JOURNEY; THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER; SPRING REUNION; STAGE STRUCK; A STAR IS BORN (1937)

 

TEN NORTH FREDERICK; THRILL OF A ROMANCE; TOGETHER AGAIN

 

WE LIVE AGAIN; WITHOUT LOVE


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#5 TopBilled

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 09:36 AM

One of my projects this morning-- I am going through the discs I have to see which suggested titles I have in my collection.

 

LOVE AFFAIR '39 is on Amazon Prime but I also have a recorded copy of it. I do not own ROMEO AND JULIET '68, but it can be rented on Amazon for a few dollars, which is what I will do. I probably will end up buying a copy of it later.

 

As for the suggested titles-- I know I have a copy of RANDOM HARVEST. But I'm not sure about the others. So I will go through what I have and post my results in a little while. If it's something I already own, then it will be easier for me to consider for a review.


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"The truth? What good is the truth if it destroys us all..?" -- Mady Christians in ALL MY SONS (1948).


#6 Jlewis

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 04:42 PM

Ha ha! Time to compare and contrast those two. Just switch the gender ages around

 

 

All of the trailers for the other movie have peekaboo nudity (of him, not her) and I don't want to cause trouble here. So... here is one memorable scene:

 


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#7 TopBilled

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 03:27 PM

Thanks Jlewis. Obviously, it's going to be hard to whittle this down to just four selections. It does occur to me that classic love stories do not have to involve romance, either. But that's probably another discussion.

 

Your mention of FEAR EATS THE SOUL reminds me of an American film made around the same time with William Holden and Kay Lenz called BREEZY. 


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#8 Jlewis

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 03:05 PM

If you are sticking to heterosexual romances that varied a bit from the norm:

 

Mata Hari (1931)... with Greta Garbo and Ramon Novarro. Oh boy! This is an odd one, but I love how she bravely walks to her death sentence without telling him, since he is blind and thinks he is visiting her at a sanatorium. I love Ramon in all of his movies, because he behaves like such a wide-eyed innocent.

 

The Hurricane (1937)... poor John Hall goes through ssssoooo much torture and adventure just to be reunited with Dorothy Lamour. It takes a while before Mary Astor manages to persuade Raymond Massey to just give up trying to keep them apart. 

 

Now Voyager (1942), the old war horse we've all seen many times with Betty Davis' love for Paul Henreid later directed towards his daughter, resembling her own self as a youth.

 

The Band Wagon (1953)... sure, it is a musical but I love how "museum piece" Fred Astaire finally wins over Cyd Charisse. Also her speech at the end of the movie about kissing her obstacles goodbye... or whatever it was she said.

 

Angst Essen Seele Auf (Ali: Fear Eats The Soul) (1974) involving a couple a few decades apart and vastly different racial/cultural backgrounds. The differences in their lives break them apart, but not without trying. The male lead was a lover of the director and his real life is an interesting, but tragic, tale in itself.

 

Howard's End (1992)... I recently re-watched it the eighth or ninth time (since first seeing it in a theater) and it consistently gets better with each viewing. Several romances here to comment on. Margaret Schlegel (Emma Thompson) has a very close friendship with Mrs. Wilcox (Vanessa Redgrave) that carries through her selfish husband (Anthony Hopkins) who still needs her in the finale for emotional support, especially after his son gets into trouble for indirectly killing the father (Samuel West as Leonard) of Margaret's sister's (Helena Bonham Carter) child (and that is another love triangle of sorts involving his wife Jackie). I especially love the scene when Margaret first observes the Wilcoxes from her flat window while critiquing brother Tibby for not being the proper host. She sees a tenderness in both Wilcoxes that she repeats after she marries him after her passing.

 

If you want to break away from the "heteronormal" (a word I purposely put in quotes only because many in this country are still not completely accepting of anything that is not):

 

Weekend (2011) directed by Andrew Haigh. I was debating whether to mention this one in discussions of David Lean's Brief Encounter and Summertime. Key difference is that nobody is married here and cheating on anybody, yet the romance is still short-lived and we still see the two guys say goodbye at a train station (a very David Lean-ish scene). One of the stars was heterosexual (with a girlfriend) and the love scenes were allegedly filmed by a woman, probably to make him more comfortable. There is some nudity and very provocative scenes, but not nearly as much as most heterosexual romances we are used to. I could easily see TCM showing it late at night after the kiddies go to bed.


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#9 TopBilled

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 09:21 AM

Jarrod -

 

How about "Magnificent Obsession" or "All That Heaven Allows"?

 

How about "Love Letters" or "Humoresque"?

 

Thanks Ray. LOVE LETTERS did cross my mind. These are all good suggestions.


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#10 rayban

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 08:58 AM

Jarrod -

 

How about "Magnificent Obsession" or "All That Heaven Allows"?

 

How about "Love Letters" or "Humoresque"?

 

 


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"I was born the day she kissed me.  I died the day she left me.  I lived a few weeks while she loved me." - Humphrey Bogart in "In A Lonely Place".


#11 TopBilled

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 03:42 PM

I assume others will recommend Random Harvest.     For an unique one I would add Brief Encounter.

 

I like those ideas, James. I will keep checking this thread to see what people mention. Then I will make my final choices at the end of January. 


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#12 jamesjazzguitar

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 03:02 PM

In February, my theme in the Essentials forum will be 'Classic Love Stories.' I will be reviewing four romance films.

 

One of them will be LOVE AFFAIR (1939) and another one will be ROMEO & JULIET (1968). But I haven't picked the other two yet. 

 

Any suggestions...?

 

I assume others will recommend Random Harvest.     For an unique one I would add Brief Encounter.


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#13 TopBilled

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 02:13 PM

In February, my theme in the Essentials forum will be 'Classic Love Stories.' I will be reviewing four romance films.

 

One of them will be LOVE AFFAIR (1939) and another one will be ROMEO & JULIET (1968). But I haven't picked the other two yet. 

 

Any suggestions...?


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"The truth? What good is the truth if it destroys us all..?" -- Mady Christians in ALL MY SONS (1948).





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