Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Top 5 Movies I Have Never Cried During, Surprisingly Enough...

In a follow up to my previous blog, which discusses five movies I was ashamed of crying during, here is the list of my Top 5 Movies I Have Never Cried During, Surprisingly Enough...Here be a list of films that merit my tears, a list that perhaps I would enjoy giving my tears too. But for whatever reason, water has never sprung out of my eyeballs while watching any of these movies.

Rank: 5
Title: Romeo and Juliet
Year: 1968 and 1996 versions

My excuse: As a movie romantic, it would make perfect sense for me to shed some tears for the tragic young lovers, Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet. But for some reason, whether it be Franco Zefferelli's classic take or Baz Luhrman's ultra-modern adaptation, neither make me cry. I've come close, while watching both versions, at the same part...the end. But not even Olivia Hussey's heart wrenching sobs or Leonardo DiCaprio's final words can squeeze teardrops from my eyes. I blame my lack of weeping on pop culture. From a very young age, we are exposed to Romeo and Juliet and are fully aware of its tragic end. We are desensitized. The shock value is gone and unfortunately, we are so expectant of the end, that the play fails to fully get its point across.


Title: Wuthering Heights
Year: 1939, 1970, 1992, and 1998 versions

My excuse: I love Wuthering Heights. It's one of my favorite books. It's one of my favorite movies (the '92 adaptation). And it's the inspiration behind one of my favorite songs. The tragic tale of Heathcliff and Cathy is classic and has been adapted for the screen several times, all portraying the lovers in their historical circumstances. (WARNING! HISTORICAL INACCURACY COMPLAINT: Actually, the 1939 version, starring Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon appears to be set in the 1840's, judging by the costumes. The novel, while written and published in the 1840's, is actually set between the years of 1771 and 1803). Sorry...had to get that out of my system. Anyway...you would expect a history buff such as myself to fully appreciate the historical setting. But the only rendition of Wuthering Heights to make me cry is the 2003 MTV musical version, which updates the story to modern day California. I honestly considered putting it on my "tears of shame" list, because it is really bad and I have no excuse. I can't really tell you why haven't cried during the traditional depictions of this movie...I am clueless.

Rank: 3
Title: Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Year: 2001, 2002, and 2003

My excuse: Lord of the Rings is great. I love it. I can't say that I'm one of those people. I can't tell you the name of Gimli's ax or anything. But I fully enjoy the Middle Earth experience. So much in fact, that I have devoted a whole day to watching all three extended versions of the trilogy. For those who don't know...that's 11 hours and 22 minutes of fantasy/adventure action. Considering that I spent 11 hours and 22 minutes with the same characters, watching them on an arduous life changing journey, some almost dying even, and then finally seeing their goal accomplished, you might think I'd cry, right? Wrong. Okay, how about when they all must say goodbye to each other and Frodo has to ride into the west with the elves, meaning him and Sam will never see each other again? How about then? Not. One. Tear. I'm kind of pissed about it, actually. I wanted to cry. I still want to cry. I think a big sob fest with this trilogy is in the future, perhaps the next time I watch them.


Title: The Karen Carpenter Story
Year: 1989

My excuse: This isn't the one with the Barbie dolls. This is the other one. The made-for-TV biopic, movie of the week. The Carpenters is my favorite band, and I actually have this movie to thank for introducing them to me. I saw it for the first time in the summer of 1998 on Lifetime. (Where else, right?) Karen Carpenter's life was tragic, to say the least. She suffered from Anorexia Nervosa and died at the age of 32 due to complications associated with the disease. I have read the biography about the band which fully details the intricacies of her life. This movie is like a power point presentation, hitting all the major points, but missing the important details. I can safely say, with an unwavering certainty that I would ball my eyes out if a decent film version of Karen Carpenter's life was made. Something in the same vein as Ray or Walk the Line. But to be perfectly honest, this movie sucks and blames most of her unhappiness on her mother's smothering qualities, while in actuality, it was the lack of a steady romantic relationship. Sadly, this and the 45 minute Barbie doll art film are all we Carpenters fans have. Hopefully that will change.

Rank: 1
Title: Moulin Rouge!
Year: 2001

My excuse: Moulin Rouge is easily in my top 20 films. Everything about it is wonderful. The story. The acting. The singing. The song choices (other than "Like a Virgin"). The sets, costumes, and make up. It's almost a perfect film. It makes me feel for everyone in it. However, the first time I saw it, I hated it, just like so many misguided souls. One song got stuck in my head (El Tango de Roxanne) and I ended up rewatching it and falling in love. But I didn't cry. I never have. The first time I probably resented it too much to let it touch me. And the other times, I knew what was going to happen so I had the added pressure of crying. It truly is tragic...two people finally overcome their external obstacles. The show is a hit. The Duke leaves. Everything is hunky-dory. But then Satine ends up having one of her "consumption attacks" and dies in Christian's arms, while the audience on the other side of the red velvet curtain cheers for more. The most heartbreaking moment is Christian's gut wrenching sob. You rarely see men cry in movies over romantic relationships, let alone let out an echoing sob. I kind of makes me feel like a heartless shell of a person, but then I remember how easily Deuce Bigalow made me cry...

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