When we first started going out in the early 2000s, our regular ‘date-night’ routine was to go to Blockbusters (I still had a VHS recorder back then), browse the aisles for about 30 minutes and debate which film to watch. We would buy double-chocolate ice cream and order a pizza, and then watch at least one film per night. (We still had lots of energy back then, so late nights were not a problem.)
We must have watched most of the classic Hollywood films together, from ‘Manhattan’ to ‘Taxi Driver’. We also went to the cinema pretty often, something we hardly ever do these days. (£20 for 2 tickets anyone? Enough said.)
These days, we watch quite a lot of films and series together on Netflix, many of which end up being about relationships in some way or another! We still have a healthy debate before adding films onto our wish list, but we’re (mostly) off the junk food these days. And we’re in bed by 10 pm…
Our favourite ones so far have been:
- 45 Years (detailing the sudden change in a long marriage just before the couple’s 45th wedding anniversary. Wonderfully acted and heart breaking.)
- Love Steaks (a German comedy drama about the blossoming relationship between an alcoholic chef and a shy masseur in a luxury hotel. Well worth watching! Subtitles.)
- Blue Jay (a recent black-and-white film about high school sweethearts meeting again 20 years after they broke up. Great dialogue and very emotional. I’m a big fan of Mark Duplass, so do check out his other films. Safety not Guaranteed is another great one.)
- Ghost World (based on a comic book, with teenagers Scarlett Johansen and Thora Birch encountering a nerdy, loveable Steve Buscemi).
- Love. A new series about two misfits falling in love. In Hollywood.
What’s so refreshing about these films and series is that the protagonists don’t go skipping hand in hand into a fairytale sunset after they have finally kissed / tied the knot. Love often is raw and complicated, and viewing couples struggling with their emotions, lack of communication skills and life in general is a breath of fresh air.
People are not perfect. There are no fairy tale endings – you need to put in work continuously to maintain a good relationship. And everyone is in the same boat: even the people who you think have it all.
Have a good week!