Our favourite romantic films from over the years

Our favourite romantic films from over the years
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Gone With The Wind

Our hearts were all a-flutter during the epic Gone With The Wind, which came out in 1939. You may have first seen it on television, but there’s no doubting its big-screen prowess, thanks to a sweeping score, epic running time and – of course – high drama. Telling the story of strong-willed Scarlett O’Hara, who meets her match in the equally stubborn Rhett Butler, this was the film that made us fall head over heels for Clark Gable and his masculine moustache. It cleaned up at the Academy Awards, but aside from its critical success we’ll always adore it for its ‘will they, won’t they’ (of course they will!) central romance.

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Brief Encounter

One of our all-time favourite films, this risqué drama is incredibly modern considering it came out in 1945. It follows married Laura (the cut-glass Celia Johnson) as her path crosses that of handsome, also married, doctor Alec (a dapper Trevor Howard) at a train station. Enjoying each other’s company they agree to meet again, but as time wears on they find their encounters becoming less innocent and filled with longing. It’s a painful tale of British primness and tradition ruling over our heart’s desires – every time we watch it we hope the outcome might somehow be different for the gentle Laura. Is it just us, or have you found steam trains hopelessly romantic ever since?

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Lady and the Tramp

Because why should humans have all the love? It seems hard to believe, but this romantic tail – sorry – tale, of two dogs had us all on the edges of our seats in 1955. She was the classy cocker spaniel; he the street-wise alley mutt. These two cartoon pooches fell head over paws for one another, as embodied by the famous spaghetti scene. Who hasn’t reminisced about their romance every time you’ve had meatballs afterwards?

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My Fair Lady

Sing with us now: “Lots of chocolate for me to eat, lots of coal making lots of heaaaaat….” There aren’t many folk who couldn’t at least hum along to the catchy songs from My Fair Lady, but of course it’s the story that keeps us going back for more. This rags to riches tale of Cockney flower (‘flaaar’) girl Eliza Doolittle and the stern Professor Higgins is a fun jaunt through the rules of etiquette – and taught us as much about romance as it did about never dropping our ‘h’s. We loved the ever-gorgeous Audrey Hepburn in the lead role, even if she didn’t sing her own songs. In the end, of course, it is Henry Higgins who is changed by the relationship as much as his beau – it was ever thus.

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West Side Story

Basically Romeo and Juliet with jazz-hands, West Side Story brought us the warring Sharks and Jets, and of course the ill-fated lovers Tony and Maria. Another love story with a cracking soundtrack, just thinking about this film brings up a mental medley of ‘I want to be in America’/’Maria’/’I feel pretty’. We loved the aggressive dancing of the Jets across the streets of New York, as well as the sassy, Latino edge of the Sharks, but it was the tender moments between the heroes that stole our hearts. We’re yet to meet anyone who didn’t cry buckets at the tragic ending.

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Bonnie and Clyde

Ok, so this is an unconventional love story – and not one we’d want in our own lives – but this tale of two criminals proves there really is someone out there for everyone! This 1967 film starred Warren Beatty and the impossibly glamorous Faye Dunaway, and was almost gripping enough to make us consider a life on the run…until of course, things end badly for the pair. Based on real events from the 1930s, Bonnie and Clyde demonstrate true devotion to one another, whatever the cost.

  • For more nostalgia, pick up the latest copy of Yours