Sunday, February 12, 2012

All About Romance

 I'm a romantic at heart, which means I love any excuse to celebrate romance and watch romantic movies. Valentine's Day, and the whole month of February really, is a perfect excuse.

So in honor of Valentine's Day and because each of these scenes inspired me when I was writing Unraveling, here are my top five best romantic scenes.

5. The Stadium Serenade in 10 Things I Hate About You

Adapted from Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew" this teen movie came out when I was in high school and was one of my absolute favorites.

Heath Ledger's character, Patrick Verona, serenades Kat Stratford (Julie Stiles), singing "I Love You Baby" on the steps of their high school's stadium while she and the girls' soccer team are on the field.

He risks getting in trouble and he embarrasses himself, which make this romantic gestures all that more swoonworthy.

4. On the prow of the Titanic

I can't lie. I was one of those people that saw this movie more than once in theaters. I actually saw it 6 times and then I bought the DVD when it came out. (I also owned the soundtrack and listened to it constantly).

And my favorite scene is when Leo and Kate, I mean Jack and Rose share their passionate kiss on the prow of the ship with the world flowing by under their feet.

It's of course, even more romantic, because as an audience we know their romance is doomed because the boat is going to sink, but for that moment, it's like they're the only two people in the world and nothing else matters. And I can't help swoon at that.

3. That Scene in the Library in Atonement

I'll watch just about anything with James McAvoy in it, but when his character, Robbie Turner kisses Cecila Tallis (Keira Knightley) in the library after a lot of angst over the letter he sent to her by accident, it's amazing.

(He meant to write something sweet and he did, but in his frustration when trying to think of the right words, he also wrote something pretty crass and of course that's the one that made it into her hands. It's also that letter that got him in a lot of trouble.)

2. Starcrossed Lovers Reunite in Casablanca

This is, in my opinion, one of the most romantic and heartbreaking scenes ever captured on film.

Set during World War II, Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman play star crossed lovers who reunite, only she's married! And they still can't be together.

This is one of those movies that is so perfect in black and white, and the ending makes me cry every time.

Anyone who hasn't seen this one, should.

1. Love at First Sight in Romeo + Juliet

This was another one of my favorite movies from when I was younger. When I was in the theater and Leo first came on screen as the tortured and love sick Romeo, the audience let out a collective sigh.

Romeo first spies Juliet (Claire Danes) at the party her parents are throwing, which of course Romeo and his friends are crashing. They see each other through the tropical fish tank and fall madly in love.

One of the best things about this scene is that there are no words, just Romeo, Juliet, the fish, and Des'ree singing "I'm Kissing You."

I don't love the whole movie. Some of the Shakespearean dialogue mixed with the modern day time period doesn't totally work for me now. But this scene is amazing.

Those are my top five. Which good ones did I miss? What are some of yours?


Liz Norris briefly taught high school English and history before trading the southern California beaches and sunshine for Manhattan's recent snowpocalyptic winter. She harbors dangerous addictions to guacamole, red velvet cupcakes, sushi, and Argo Tea, fortunately not all together. Her first novel, UNRAVELING (Balzer+Bray April 2012), is the story of one girl’s fight to save her family, her world, and the one boy she never saw coming.


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