Sad Movies

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Movie lovers come in all shapes and sizes. For some, there’s nothing better than a brainless comedy. Others stick to the independent and art-house scene. And then there are those who can’t get enough of tearjerkers and sad movies. This article is dedicated to the latter, as it’s jam-packed with weepy classics guaranteed to make you reach for the Kleenex.

Imitation of Life (1959) – After temporarily losing her daughter at the beach, an aspiring actress (Lana Turner) takes in the black widow (Juanita Moore) who helped her. As the years pass, the widow’s daughter–a very fair-skinned girl–tries to pass for white, much to her mother’s chagrin. Also starring Sandra Dee and John Gavin.

Atonement (2007) – Based on the novel by Ian McEwan, this winner of Best Picture of the Year at the 61st British Academy Film Awards tells the heartbreaking tale of a young girl (Saoirse Ronan) who falsely accuses her sister’s (Keira Knightley) lover (James McAvoy) of being a rapist. As the years go by, the girl grows into a woman and comes to grasp the full significance of her accusations. Nominated for seven Academy Awards.

Penny Serenade (1941) – Irene Dunne and Cary Grant play a married couple who endure financial hardships and try to raise an adopted child. Grant would receive an Academy Award nomination for his role in the film. Also starring Edgar Buchanan and Beulah Bondi.

Love Story (1970) – The tragic romance between a Harvard student (Ryan O’Neal) and a girl with a working-class background (Ali MacGraw). Nominated for seven Academy Awards, the film provided us with the famous line “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” Tommy Lee Jones has a small role in his feature film debut.

Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939) – Based on the novel by James Hilton, this British classic focuses on the life of Charles Edward Chipping (Robert Donat), an elderly former teacher looking back on his 58-career during a dream. Greer Garson co-stars, and Donat would win a Best Actor Oscar for his performance (beating out Clark Gable for Gone with the Wind).

Brief Encounter (1945) – A bored British housewife (Celia Johnson) engages in an extramarital affair with a handsome doctor (Trevor Howard). Since it’s on my list of sad movies, it’s probably safe to assume that they don’t live happily ever after. Considered one of the best British films ever made, it won the Palme d’Or at the 1946 Cannes Film Festival.

If you’re not already blubbering uncontrollably, head out and pick up a few of the sad movies listed above. And once you’re done with these selections, be sure to check out anything adapted from the novels of Nicolas Sparks. The writer of such works as The Notebook and Message in a Bottle, his big-screen adaptations are bound to leaving you sobbing.

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