romantic gestures in film

Maybe it's because Nathaniel and I had an AMAZING DATE last night, or maybe it's just because I'm intrinsically a big giant sap... but EW's list of 25 Most Romantic Gestures in Film got me all gushy today.

My favorite romantic gestures on EW's list are the ones from Moulin Rouge!, Brokeback Mountain, Once, and The Wedding Singer... but I felt there were several glaring omissions from my own romantic movie canon:
  1. Forgetting Sarah Marshall: Peter retrieves the topless photo of Rachel from the men's bathroom at the bar, knowing full well that in doing so he'll get the crap beaten out of him.
  2. Never Been Kissed: Sam publicly forgives Josie and demonstrates his love with a full makeout session on the pitcher's mound of a packed baseball stadium.
  3. Love Actually: Jamie learns to speak Portuguese... poorly... and flies to Portugal to propose to Aurelia, with whom he's never actually had a real conversation. (Meanwhile, she's also learned to speak English... poorly.)
  4. Somewhere In Time: Richard falls in love with a woman in an old painting... and goes back in time to woo her.
  5. Walk the Line: Johnny proposes to June on stage, mid-song, and won't take no for an answer.
  6. City of Angels: Seth renounces his immortality and becomes human so that he can be with Maggie.
Your turn...
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • RSS

18 Response to "romantic gestures in film"

  1. Patricia Perry says:
    July 24, 2008 at 10:43 AM

    That's a fun list, but it should be called "The 25 Most Romantic Gestures in the last 20 years of film." Romance has been going on in the movies since they were invented. With a little brainstorming, I think I could come up with a good list of romantic gestures that predate any of these.

    As for your list, some great choices, Nayana, particularly "Love Actually." I think the whole last 30 minutes of "Love Actually" is just bursting with sweet romantic gestures (the little boy running through the airport, Hugh Grant showing up at his former secretary's house and gamely escorting her to her nephew's Christmas pageant,and so on.)

  2. David Bishop says:
    July 24, 2008 at 11:10 AM

    I agree with Pat. How can this list not include movies like Casablanca or City Lights?

  3. Nayana Anthony says:
    July 24, 2008 at 11:13 AM

    I hear you guys, and Pat, you're totally right about Love Actually. I picked the one that I still cry over every time I see it.

    David... what specific gestures are you thinking of from those movies? I considered Casablanca... but I think sometimes a movie can be super-romantic without a big romantic gesture. (Although I will admit Bogey putting her on the plane was pretty damn romantic.)

  4. David Bishop says:
    July 24, 2008 at 11:59 AM

    The plane scene in Casablanca is one of the most romantic gestures. It's easy to make a romantic gesture in the hopes of winning somebody over. To instead sacrifice your own happiness to secure theirs, is love. As a Christian, I've come to believe that love is sacrifice. In both Casablanca and City Lights, there are leading men who put it all on the line to help those they love, and they don't do it to woo the girl. It's much more selfless than that.

  5. Nayana Anthony says:
    July 24, 2008 at 12:01 PM

    I'm down with that. Selfless gestures of love will always top flashy gestures of romance. That said, I'd like to have both.

  6. David Bishop says:
    July 24, 2008 at 12:11 PM

    Now that I think about it, there's a scene in a movie called A Knight's Tale when Heath Ledger's character offers to win the tournament in the name of his love. His love, Jocelyn, instead explains how it would be more romantic for him to lose. I would have liked to see that make this list, but I know there are a lot of A Knight's Tale haters, but there's an example of a sort of fusion between selfish and selfless.

  7. Nayana Anthony says:
    July 24, 2008 at 12:13 PM


    I didn't hate A Knight's Tale, but I don't remember that scene. (Saw it once, in the theater when it first came out.)

  8. Big Mike Mendez says:
    July 24, 2008 at 12:31 PM

    Jason Schwartzman striking up the band at the end of Rushmore.

  9. valis says:
    July 24, 2008 at 12:35 PM

    Nitpicking the EW list:
    - Leonardo DiCaprio draws Kate Winslet in the nude in Titanic (1997)

    Wasn't the gesture by Kate Winslet's character to let him draw her nude?

    - Colin Firth buys Renée Zellweger a new diary at the end of Bridget Jones's Diary (2001).

    No, this wasn't a gesture at all. It was the required oh no at the last minute they're not getting together because of misunderstanding crap which for some reason is required in romantic movies. His "I like you just the way you are" declaration would be the big romantic gesture. I like this movie and the books a lot, don't get me wrong.

    - Campbell Scott gives Kyra Sedgwick a garage door opener in Singles (1992).

    Er, I'm beginning to think they don't mean romantic gestures at all. They mean 25 Memorable moments from Romantic movies surely, as the garage door opener was a lame gesture and done for comedic reasons.

    - Julie Delpy sings a song (''Waltz'') she wrote about him to Ethan Hawke right Before Sunset (2004).

    I was worrying this movie and its predecessor wouldn't be mentioned at all.

  10. Nayana Anthony says:
    July 24, 2008 at 1:04 PM

    Oh, hey, Pat! I just went back and looked at EW's page. It is the most romantic gestures from the past 25 years. They're celebrating their silver anniversary, I guess.

    And I'd just like to make sure everyone's aware that one of my choices, Somewhere in Time, is 28 years old. :-D

  11. Jess says:
    July 24, 2008 at 5:51 PM

    David, I LOVE A KNIGHT'S TALE! I think him learning to dance for her is awesome.

    Great list Nayana - I love Never Been Kissed. I can't think of others to add, but I know more exist.

  12. David Bishop says:
    July 24, 2008 at 10:04 PM

    Jess, we should start/join the A Knight's Tale fanclub.

    "I'm a writer. I give the truth scope."

  13. Ryan McNeil says:
    July 25, 2008 at 4:48 PM

    Five of my favorites that haven't come up yet...

    ACROSS THE UNIVERSE: Jude singing "All You Need is Love" from the rooftop.

    STRANGER THAN FICTION: Harold trying to woo Ana by bringing her a dozen flours.

    THE TRUMAN SHOW: Truman leaving the perfect world he lives in to find Lauren.

    FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL: Charles' babbling speech to Carrie where he tries to tell her theat he loves her- the one that includes the word "um" about a zillion times.

    BIG FISH: Edward Bloom trying to impress young Sandra by filling the yard in front of her sorrority house with daffodils.

  14. Nayana Anthony says:
    July 25, 2008 at 8:01 PM

    Veddy nice.

  15. Anonymous Says:
    July 28, 2008 at 3:49 PM

    John Krasinski writing his vows on the beach in the sand outside of Mandy Moore's hotel window in License to Wed. The movie is crap but that gesture was sweet.

  16. David Bishop says:
    July 28, 2008 at 6:20 PM

    I totally agree, Gwen. That was most definitely a stand out moment in a throw away movie. Heck, I'd marry him.

  17. Farzan says:
    July 29, 2008 at 2:07 AM

    Wow, great list. I love number 1 and thought that was vey touching. Great post, keep'em coming

  18. Jacstev says:
    August 1, 2008 at 2:01 AM

    I also like this list you've made. Good work Nayana.

Copyright © 2008-2010 The Center Seat
Free WordPress Themes designed by EZwpthemes
Converted by Theme Craft
Powered by Blogger Templates