Today, the day after Tax Day is a charmed day. After Doris Day and National Talk Like a Pirate Day (Sep. 19), it is the most romantic day of the year. A day so full of passion, desire, overflowing in fact, that it needs the entire weekend for the ardor to subside.
I consider myself of the romantic persuassion. And on exactly 364 romantic, carefully planned, spontaneous occasions throughout the year, I can persuade myself to go out to the garden and cut some brownies or head to the kitchen and bake some flowers for the love(s) in my life. But never and I mean never on Valentines Day.
As a romantic tax payer--yes I do pay taxes--gas, alcohol and tobacco, if I'm not too locked in to my routine and the tumblers align just right, I can be open to and treated to a fine, romantic movie. But, she must get me drunk enough to numb all doubts, fill the tank with gas and buy me a pack of Spirits before we even head to the romcom cinema. And never on Valentines Day.
For filmmakers, capturing true romance on celluloid is quite the challenge. For the audience, it takes major discipline not to walk out, slap the usher, or mainline a milkdud after enduring another 90-minute Hallmark card. When that rare, believable cinematic romance takes a nosedive to treacly comedic slapstick, or what began a promising, edgy comedy that has now been hijacked by sacchrine and charming cliche, it is at these moments, when I am overwhelmed by the stench, I want to stand up in my theater seat and yell "YOU DICK." But, I don't. Because I am romantic tax payer who just needs to go outside for a smoke and a jolt of Scotch.
I've heard Pulp Fiction described as a" violent non-violent film." I've listened to a friend call the King of Comedy "a very serious comedy. " I've watched a fictional documentary, likely, you have to.....it's called the Fox News Channel. Yet, these might be foggy notions to some and cloudy, confusing and utterly confounding to any Fox viewer, but I do know a romantic unromantic film when I see it. But never, say it with me now....... on Valentines Day.
Here's my list (not in any degree of order) of the Most Romantic Unromantic Movies of All Time......after 1968.
Harold and Maude
Thelma and Louise
V FOr Vendetta
Leaving Las Vegas
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Sid and Nancy, Princess Bride, Midnight Cowboy, Henry Fool, Brokeback Mountain, Risky Business, Heaven Can Wait, Say Anything, Amelie, Pump Up the Volume, Raising Arizona and Boy's Don't Cry.
Not Romantic. Not Funny. Not even on Valentines Day.
Top Gun, Pretty Woman, Love Story, An Officer and a Gentleman, Briget Jones' Diary, You've Got Mail, Bodyguard, Ghost, Urban Cowboy, The Way We Were and Cocktail.