Confessions of a Film Junkie: 5 Ideal Valentine’s Day Films for Deranged Couples (and Single Weirdo’s)
By: Brian Cotnoir
Hey all, well it’s that time of the year again: Valentine’s Day. Every February in the United States we celebrate the overly commercialized Valentine’s Day, where women expect you to buy them flowers and chocolates, and guys can expect to spend at least $400 if they have any hopes of getting laid...I jest of course, but it is kind of wrong that this is the one “socially-acceptable” day to show love. Shouldn’t you show love every day? So anyways, in less than a Fortnight couples all over this great land will be coming together in living rooms, fancy restaurants, and hotel rooms to celebrate this most meaningless of holidays. However, after they finish doing the nasty they’re going to need something to watch while cuddling, but not everybody wants to watch “Crazy Stupid Love”, “The Notebook”, and anything else that features Ryan Gosling. Some couples prefer an unconventional love story, or if you’re like me and about ready to spend your fourth Valentine’s Day in a row alone in your room watching Netflix (Hey, I consider it a successful evening). So in honor of Valentine’s Day, this week I am presenting to you, 5 Ideal Films for Deranged Couples (and Single Weirdo’s).
1.) Let the Right One In
The past few years, I have been watching this one on Valentine’s Day. Ever since I saw it back in 2010, it has become one of my favorite films, and with each passing year, I honestly do believe it has one of the Best Romantic Horror Movies ever made, and is totally meant to be watched on Valentine’s Day. I mean, what could be more romantic then the story about a young boy, who falls in love with a vampire girl who’s not actually a girl who lives with her pedophile boyfriend? Hey, it may not be a “Traditonal” Romance Flick, but I actually enjoy the soft-hearted love story between Oskar and Eli (Pronounced Elly for those who have never seen it). Oh, and don’t think about seeing the Americanized release “Let Me In” because you “don’t like to read subtitles!”. That version is garbage! A total rip-off, and missed many of the key points and themes in John Ajdives Lindqvist’s original novel!
This was my favorite movie in college. It was the first time I ever felt like I was smart and sophisticated just for watching a film. The story of “Cashback” is your basic: boy loses girl, boy tries to win girl back, along the way meets other girl who is clearly better for him, but he’s too stubborn to see that, and just before the old girl takes him back he has an epiphany that the other girl was right for him all along and professes his love to her instead. Now on the surface, that doesn’t sound all that different from a traditional Rom-Com, but believe me, “Cashback” has a very unique twist on it. Not only that, but the main character Ben Willis (played by Actor Sean Biggerstaff who some of you may know as Oliver Wood from the Harry Potter Series) is not all that likeable of a character. I mean, he’s not horrible, but you know I was kind of hoping that he would fail in the film. I mean, how weird is that when you want the main character of a film you enjoy to fail? This film is beautifully shot, and this films screenwriter/director Sean Ellis really did create an underappreciated masterpiece. It’s actually a film I think you should see multiple times. I’ve watched “Cashback” dozens of times, and every time I do, I always seem to notice something awesome that I didn’t notice before. So you should definitely give “Cashback” a watch some time.
3.) Female Vampire
I swear to you this is the last Vampire film that will appear on this list. I first came across this obscure 1973 French Exploitation Film from a friend of mine who reviewed it for another blog that I contribute too. “Female Vampire” (sometimes called “The Bare Breasted Countess” depending on what country you’re in) is the story of a beautiful Countess—played by Lina Romay—who has to drain people of their “sexual fluids” as opposed to their blood in order to survive. The film was directed by Lina Romay’s future husband, Jesus Franco. All though, I could’ve gone with a more notable Vampire-Exploitation Film like Jean Rollins “Requiem for a Vampire”, I chose Franco’s “Female Vampire” because it has the perfect balance of eroticism, violence, and an easy to follow story. This film is probably better suited for the Single Weirdo’s, but I can also see this as a good film for any couple that may need a little “spark of inspiration” *wink wink nudge nudge*
4.) Wristcutters: A Love Story
Nothing quite says romantic, undying love like group suicide, now doesn’t it? “Wristcutters: A Love Story” is the story of a young man named Zia (played by Patrick Fugit) who commits suicide after being broken up with his girlfriend Desiree. Zia soon finds out that people who commit suicide don’t go to heaven or hell, but rather a weird almost purgatory like place, where everything seems like the real world, only just a little bit worst. Zia learns one day through an old friend (also a suicide victim) that Desiree had committed suicide as well shortly after him, and now he wants to journey across the vast bleak purgatory with his new friend Eugene and a hitchhiker the pick-up named Mikal. This is one of the Best and Most Unique films I have ever seen. Its dark, it’s smart, it’s entertaining, and really is great. The film talks about many important things to people like love, heartbreak, making important life decisions, coping with loss, and even addresses the overwhelming issue of people who contemplate suicide after someone breaks up with them. I personally, think this is a wonderful Dark Comedy for Deranged Couples and Single Weirdo’s equally.
5.) Corpse Bride
Leave it to Writer /Animator/ Director Tim Burton to teach kids about the beauty and glory of necrophilia. Now, I will admit that I wanted to include an animated film on this list and I was torn between this and “Hotel Transylvania”, but since I already promised you no more vampire films on this list, I opted for a zombie film instead. “Corpse Bride” is the story of a young man named Victor (voiced by Johnny Depp) who is being forced to marry a woman he doesn’t know named Victoria by his parents. Victor is a very nervous and neurotic fellow, and after a disastrous wedding rehearsal he heads off to the woods to practice his wedding vows, where he places his wedding ring on what he believes to be a branch, but it actually turns out to be the skeletal finger of Emily the “Corpse Bride”. Now according to the rules of the dead, they are married, and now Victor has to find a way to annul this marriage to this undead girl. The stop-motion animation styling’s of Tim Burton are what make this film great, add in a nice soundtrack from composer and frequent collaborator Danny Elfman and you’ve got yourself not just a great Love Story, but also a great film.