Sunday 16 February 2014

Hollywood's Top 30 Classic Romances

In honor of this St. Valentine's weekend I have organized a list of Hollywood's Top 30 Classic Romances, enjoy!;)

(1.) Casablanca

This romantic classic has proved capable of causing hearts to ache as it depicts the tragic love story of both Rick (Humphrey Bogart) and Isla (Ingrid Bergman) who are forced to go on in life without one another, it's a story about, in simple words, a tragically forbidden love. And after years of coping with and endeavoring to grasp their forbidden romance as well as trying to let go of all of the precious memories spent with his love interest (Isla), Rick is unexpectedly granted a visit by none other than Isla while she and her husband take time to visit to a popular nightspot he runs in Casablanca. Faced with the crisis, the crisis of finding a way to sneak her and her husband (an underground leader of Czechoslovak) out of Casablanca while they are being detained by a Nazi Major, Isla desperately seeks help from Rick and in the meantime is bombarded with memories of their unforgettable moments spent in Paris so long ago.

 As their reunion leads them down Memory Lane with every piano note of a song that used to be their's, only one last question remains, will Rick escape the bitterness that clouds him in regards to the woman who walked out on him so long ago? Will Rick help Isla and her husband escape?

(2.) Gone With The Wind

This classic film depicts the turbulent romance between the Southern Belle, Scarlett O'Hara (Vivien Leigh) and Rhett Butler (Clark Gable) during the Civil War era. It's a story about a woman too prideful to admit her love for Rhett, and in the end, is forced to cope with the tragic misfortune of eventually losing his love for her, a love that at one time had burned so fiercely.

(3.) Some Like It Hot

This romantic comedy is about two struggling musicians, Joe (Tony Curtis) and Jerry (John Lemmon) who, after witnessing the St. Valentine's Day massacre seek safety as they disguise themselves amongst an all girl band headed to Florida in fear that they will be caught and killed by the mob. In the meantime, several problems seem to unravel for both Joe/Josephine and Jerry/Daphne as Joe finds himself mesmerized by the charm of another band member Sugar Cane or Sugar Kowalczyck (Marilyn Monroe). 

(4.) To Have and To Have Not

In this romantic film, an Expatriate American by the name of Harry Morgan (Humphrey Bogart) finds himself in love with a singer (Lauren Bacall) at a local nightspot while he's in the process of aiding a Free French Resistance Leader and his beautiful wife in their quest for transportation to Martinique.

(5.) Sabrina

After a visit to Paris, the young and naive Sabrina, the daughter of a chauffeur undergoes a massive transformation, one that immediately catches the eyes of the rich son whose family employs Mr. Fairchild, Sabrina's own father. In the end, however, it's his much older and far more serious brother that Sabrina finds herself hopelessly in love with.

(6.) To Catch a Thief 

In the midst former yet reformed jewel thief Jone Robie (Cary Grant)'s endeavor to prove himself not guilty after an elderly woman has been robbed of a large quantity of priceless jewels, he soon finds himself captivated by the elder woman's daughter, Frances (Grace Kelly) who in the end aids him in his fight to prove himself innocent. 

(7.) An Affair to Remember

A couple meets while on a cruise from New York to Europe and find themselves madly in love with one another and upon bidding farewell and going their separate ways, they (despite being engaged to other persons) make a pact to reunite again on the top of the Empire State Building in six months. But will the turbulent circumstances surrounding them while their apart prevent them from their reunion?

(8.) The Ghost and Mrs. Muir

Embarking on a journey of her own, a young widow by the name of Lucy Muir (Gene Tierney) finds herself in a cottage by the seaside with the presence of a ghost, the dead sea captain, Captain Daniel Gregg (Rex Harrison) who haunts the cottage. In the end, the two end up striking up a unique relationship that later leads to romance.

(9.) Breakfast at Tiffany's


This timeless classic denotes a plethora of both glamour and romance as it depicts the troubled young socialite Holly Gollightly (Audrey Hepburn), a woman afraid of falling in love or committing herself to any man, that is until she meets the charming young Paul Varjak (George Peppard), a recent client of the apartment complex where she lives. 

(10.) Giant

This '56 classic consists of endless doses of both romance and conflict as it follows the life of a Texas cattle rancher by the name of Jordan (Bick) Benedict (Rock Hudson) along with the lives of both his family and associates, his wife Leslie (Elizabeth Taylor) and associate, the cowboy and soon to be "Oil Tycoon", Jett Rink (James Dean). 

(11.) Bringing Up Baby

While in the process of trying to secure a $1 million dollar fund for his museum, a confused paleontologist by the name of David (Cary Grant) remains ruthlessly followed by a most difficult and irritating young heiress and her pet leopard called "Baby". 

(12.) It's a Wonderful Life

This charming classic follows the life of a young and terribly frustrated businessman, George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) as he struggles with the countless trials that seemingly cloud his life, most of which are often caused by the ruthless hand of the cold-hearted and greedy old man, Mr. Potter (Lionel Barrymore).  Faced with despair, an angel by the name of Clarence (Henry Travers) is sent to his aid and in the meantime gives George a taste of what life would have been like if he'd, as he'd expressed "never been born". 

In the meantime, however, this timeless and beloved classic also manages to keep a firm grip on countless moments of love and romance as it also portrays the turbulent yet beautiful romance between George and his supportive young wife, Mary Hatch (Donna Reed).

(13.) The Sound of Music

This classic musical, a masterpiece filled with endless doses of singing and romance portrays the early years of a young woman who ends up leaving an Austrian convent in order to become a governess for a retired Naval officer widower whom she later ends up falling hopelessly in love with. 

(14.) Notorious

This thrilling Alfred Hitchcock favorite both excites and charms the hearts of it's entire audience as it tells the story of a woman by the name of Alicia Huberman (Ingrid Bergman) urged by a government agent named Devlin (Cary Grant) to venture out on the dangerous mission of spying on a group of her father's Nazi friends in South America. In the meantime, however, a romance begins to develop between the two, Alicia (Bergman) and Devlin (Grant).

(15.) Singin' In The Rain

This witty romance tells the story of a famous on-screen couple Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) and Lina Lemont (Jean Hagen) and their endeavor to transform their romantic film into a musical. The dilemma, however, that despite Lina (Jean)'s charming good looks, she can't sing a note. Her vocal skills remaining hopeless and unfixable, it is decided that she shall have a young woman by the name of Kathy Seldon (Debbie Reynolds) dub over her voice. In the meantime, however, conflict unravels as Lina (Jean)'s co-star Don (Kelly) finds himself falling madly in love with the young aspiring actress, Kathy (Reynolds). A dilemma that ends up causing Lina (Hagen) to grow enraged with jealousy. 

(16.) Laura

Starring the mesmerizing Gene Tierney as "Laura", this epic romance depicts the life and mistaken death of the girl who never ceased to steal the heart of every man who ever entered into her life. In the meantime, while investigating her "murder-case", the young detective Lt. Mark Mcpherson (Dana Andrews) finds that he too has become captivated by her beauty and could even possibly have started to fall in love with her, but has he fallen in love with a "corpse" or perhaps a mistakenly deceased woman? Could there still be hope for their romance?

(17.) Charade

This suspense film relays the story of a young woman, Regina Lampert as she is both pursued and ruthlessly chased by countless men in search for an enormous fortune that her late husband had stolen before his mysterious murder. Surrounded by both terror and suspense, who will Regina (Hepburn) find herself able to trust? Perhaps the man, Peter Joshua (Cary Grant) who also mysteriously changes his name every other minute? Enthralled by infatuation, Regina (Hepburn) also can't help but find herself possibly even falling in love with Peter (Grant), a man whom she'd only met recently, a man who she can't even be sure of whether to trust or not. 

(18.) Meet Me in St. Louis

Only a year before the St. Louis World's Fair, the the Smith children are taught a lesson in both life and love, the last factor making it tragically difficult for their planned transfer to New York, a move that will effect every single one of them, primarily Esther Smith who has only recently won the heart of the boy next door, the boy of her dreams, John Truett (Tom Drake). But will their father, Mr. Alonzo Smith (Leon Ames) find it in his heart to let the family stay, close to both their true loves and beloved city?

(19.) The African Queen

Faced with the tragedy of her brother's recent suicide, a young member of a missionary group by the name of Rose Sayer (Katharine Hepburn) soon finds her life transformed for the better by the scruffy, unshaved, gin-swinging rummy of a captain by the name of Mr. Allnut (Humphrey Bogart) who eventually shows her romance despite the tribulation surrounding them as Mr. Allnut struggles to use his humble boat to attack an enemy warship.

(20.) His Girl Friday

The young newspaper editor, Walter Burns resorts to every trick in the book in hopes of preventing his ex-wife, Hildy Johnson (Rosalind Russell) from remarrying but will his tireless effort prove successful? Will Hildy (Russell) give him another chance?

(21.) Roman Holiday

As she embarks on a highly publicized tour of the European Capitals, the young Princess Anne (Audrey Hepburn) begins to grow restless and exhausted from all of her requirements as a Royal and opts to escape from her room and explore Rome. Highly drugged from a sedative given to her by a doctor, Anne comes home with a young American newspaper reporter by the name of Joe Bradley (Gregory Peck) who eventually finds out from the news reports of of her position in Royalty and considers his meeting her as the perfect opportunity to get some pictures of her as well as the perfect story. Motivated by her rank in royalty as well as getting a top story from her, Joe (Peck) convinces the young princess to explore the streets of Rome with him for the day and instead of getting a good story ends up finding himself both enchanted and in love with Anne (Hepburn). 

(22.) Rear Window

This enticing Hitchcock film consists of plenty of romance along with Hitchcock's usual doses of suspense as it portrays the thrill-ridden events surrounding a wheel-chair bound photographer by the name of L.B. Jeff Jeffries (Jimmy Stewart) who in spying on his neighbor discovers the gruesome truth that one of them, in that building across the way has committed a murder. Will he (Stewart) or his true love, Lisa (Grace Kelly) find themselves in danger during their quest to bring the killer to justice? 

(23.) My Fair Lady

This cherished musical tells the enchanting story of the snobbish Professor Henry Higgin (Rex Harrison)'s efforts to transform a young lady and member of lower society, Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn) into a charming young lady easily able to fit into High Society. But in the end, the Professor can't help but find himself in love with her and far too accustomed to her face to ever let go of her. 

(24.) Bus Stop

This 1956 classic tells the charming story of a naive and stubborn young cowboy called Beauregard 'Bo' Decker (Don Murray) who finds himself immediately drawn to the beautiful yet troubled saloon singer named Cherie (Marilyn Monroe) and his efforts to forcefully take her away to his ranch in Montana and marry her. Despite her efforts to escape him, Cherie (Monroe) soon finds herself strangely in loved by the young cowboy. Could 'Bo" (Murray)'s determination have rubbed off?

(25.) The Cowboy and The Lady

This 1938 romantic masterpiece tells the story of a beautiful young socialite, Mary Smith (Merle Oberon) who in her attempt to disguise herself as a humble maid becomes involved with an unpretentious and outspoken cowboy (Gary Cooper) with no idea of her true identity. Will the revalation of her true rank in society tear the two apart and slice a gap between the love they've begun to find in one another. Will 'Stretch' (Gary Cooper)'s love for the gorgeous young 'maid' grow tainted with the knowledge that she belongs to the status of "High Society", the same rank in society that he seems to detest so openly?

(26.) Holiday

This timeless Classic charms the hearts of millions as it tells the story of a young man, Johnny Case (Cary Grant) who immediately finds himself in love and engaged to a daughter of a wealthy family (Doris Nolan). Despite, however, everyone else's urging that he focus on more practical things in life, primarily becoming more attentive to his business and less attracted to his unorthodox plan of going on a holiday to celebrate the early days of his youth he, with the help of his fiancee's eccentric sister and brother, eventually manages to set out on a his long-desired adventure, finding an unexpected romance in the meantime with none other than his fiancee's very own sister.

(27.) Funny Face

This treasured classic tells the story of an unexpected discovery made during an impromptu shoot at a bookstore, a discovery of the perfect new fashion model found in the very likes of none other than the bookstore's shop clerk. Faced with a new career in the fashion industry, Jo Stockton (Audrey Hepburn) finds herself reluctantly begining to favor her new position as a model, as does she also begin to find herself in the midst of a blossoming romance with the unexpected likes of her photographer, Dick Avery (Fred Astaire). Filled with countless musical numbers as well as witty scenes of both romance and comedy, this film seems to uphold every aspect of a perfect cinematic masterpiece. 

(28.) The Shop Around The Corner

This film relays the wittily romantic story of co-workers, Klara Novak (Margaret Sullavan) and and Alfred Kralik (Jimmy Stewart) who nearly despise one another but who both fail to recognize that they're in fact falling in love with one another as they exchange letters with one another, disguised as one another's anonymous pen-pal. 

(29.) Farewell to Arms

The charming tale of love between the ambulance driver Lt. Henry (Gary Cooper) and the young Nurse Catharine Barkley (Helen Hayes) during the turbulant time of World War 1. Set in Italy, the two will stop at nothing to be together and not even war seems apt enough to tear them apart from one another.

(30.) Penny Serenade

The story of a young couple, Julie Gardiner Adams (Irene Dunne) and Roger Adams (Cary Grant) whose journey to discovering happiness in the child that they would never be able to have, seek parenthood in adoption and along the way suffer countless trials and tribulations, some almost fierce enough to tear them apart. But will the joy and love that binds them together prove strong enough in their bitter battle with tragic episodes of disapointment and loss?

Hopefully you will find time to check out at least some of the movies listed, I promise you won't be disapointed... I also hope that you had an enjoyable Valentine's day this past Friday! 

~ Erin xoxo <3

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