Here’s something you may not know about your Scotch Plains-Fanwood Patch Editor. Do you remember heading out to Scotch Plains Palmer Video on Saturday night, chatting with whatever film geek was working the counter and picking up a movie? Well, if you stopped in at all between summer of 2006 and the end of 2008, shortly before Palmer Video closed its doors forever, chances are you ran into me.
In addition to living and breathing all things local journalism, I am a huge film buff. I studied film criticism in college, acted and wrote screen plays for an underground film production company, worked at Palmer Video as a key holder for a few years, and spent most weekends in Fanwood as a kid watching the Turner Classic Movie channel with my mom, developing a love for Cary Grant, Audrey Hepburn, and Hitchcock.
This year, I thought I would lend a hand to all you movie-challenged Valentines and let you in on my top picks for the best movies to show your date on Valentine’s Day. Here’s a hint: boys, you don’t have to sit through The Notebook to show your gal a good time.
For the Dudes Who Can’t Stand Rom-coms.
Go with Chasing Amy or Mallrats. These are two of Jersey funny man, Kevin Smith’s best comedies that also revolve around romantic storylines. Have no fear, Kevin Smith is a master of edgy humor, so those he loves me/he loves me not storylines that normally have you kicking and screaming to the movie theater (so you managed to avoid seeing The Vow? Nice one. Fist pumps all around) are all wrapped up with unforgettable punch lines and comedic twist and turns that only Jay and Silent Bob could turn into movie magic.
For the New Couple Looking For that Horror Movie Cuddle
Every guy knows that the key to getting your girl to inch a little closer is to take her to a thriller. Here’s the thing, many of us can’t stand horror movies. Here are my picks for the couple who may be on their first date, (and for the guy who is used to the classic horror movie trick) but are not really into horror movies.
-Go with a classic Alfred Hitchcock film. Not only will you come off looking intelligent and well versed in cinema classics, you’ll still get that horror movie cuddle. Here is my top three for Valentine’s Day: North by North West, Marnie, and Rebecca. All three of these timeless films also have captivating romantic storylines.
Starring Lawrence Olivier and a young Joan Fontaine, Rebecca haunted tail that follows a pair of newlyweds tortured by the tragic death of a love lost. Rebecca may have not graced the silver screen since 1940, but the film still has the mystery and intrigue to keep you and your lady on the edge of your seats.
For the Girl who Loves the Classics
This also works if you’re planning on a girl’s night in, or spending the evening with Mom. Here are some of the most enchanting films of all time, many starring Cary Grant – a man whose charm is truly timeless. Two great picks: His Girl Friday, starring Rosalind Russell and Cary Grant, and An Affair to Remember, starring Deborah Karr and Cary Grant.
Charade, starring Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant is another great classic romantic comedy. This is probably my all-time favorite film. What could be better than Audrey and Cary? Can’t get enough of Audrey Hepburn? Make sure you catch Sabrina, Roman Holiday, and Breakfast with Tiffany’s too.
For those of you who still can’t decide….
Here are my top 10 Romantic Comedies that have yet to be mentioned in this note.
10) Brat Pack 80’s Marathon: The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, and Weird Science
9) Moonstruck: Cher was never so brilliant.
8) Franco Zefferelli’s Romeo and Juliet
7) Garden State: A little something for your Indie Darling, written by and starring Zach Braff with Natalie Portman.
6) Cinema Paradisio: A wonderful love story and one of the most beautiful foreign films you will ever see.
5) Empire Records: Liv Tyler and Rene Zellwegger star in this quirky romantic comedy about a group of kids who try to save a record store. Romance, havoc, and amazing tunes and live performances ensue.
4) When Harry Met Sally
3) The Princess Bride
2) Say Anything: Ladies, if your Valentine holds up a boom box outside your house as Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” fills the night air, marry him. Quick!
1) Love Actually: I have never met a man or woman who didn’t LOVE this movie.
Good luck! Happy Valentine’s Day Scotch Plains Fanwood!