Want to branch out at this romantic time of year instead of rewatching “Four Weddings and a Funeral,” “Love Actually,” “The Princess Bride” or “The Notebook?” Here are some ideas on how to spice up your Valentine’s Day streaming options with films that might have fallen off your radar or maybe weren’t there to begin with.
For mature audiences
Warren Beatty’s intellectually and emotionally stimulating 1981 epic
“Reds” covers not only the life/career of influential journalist John Reed, but the fiery relationship he had with Louise Bryant (Keaton). It’s sensual, smart and soulful — particularly that tear-jerking reunion scene at a train station. “Reds” should have won best picture at the 1982 Oscars. Sorry, “Chariots of Fire.”
In Netflix’s moving
“Our Souls at Night,” frequent romantic on-screen partners Robert Redford and Jane Fonda play lonely folk whose relationship stirs up small-town gossip. Director Ritesh Batra hands the film over to his veteran stars and they couldn’t be finer.
- > 12 best new SF Bay Area restaurants for date night 2019
- > 5 perfect low-key SF Bay Area Valentine’s Day ideas for the couple who hates plans
- > 28 Valentine’s events across the SF Bay Area
- > 2 SAD: No Sweethearts candy conversation hearts this Valentine’s Day
- > Krispy Kreme saves Valentine’s Day with conversation heart doughnuts
- > 5 tasty Trader Joe’s Valentine’s Day treats and gifts under $4
“Crazy, Stupid, Love” features not only the ridiculously talented cast of Steve Carell, Julianne Moore, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, it knocks us out with a killer screenplay from “This Is Us” creator Dan Fogelman. The 2011 comedy drama covers the tribulations of SoCal residents caught up in the ins and outs and in-betweens of new and old loves. It’s not only sexy, funny and poignant, and features one of the best lines about Gosling’s, er, “body” of work, courtesy of Ms. Stone.
In 2000’s slam-dunk of a romance
“Love & Basketball,” Sanaa Lathan and Omar Epps sizzle as former childhood b-ball friends who find themselves courting the big leagues and each other. Make a fast break to watch this one.
For same-sex couples
A one-night stand turns into something surprisingly substantial yet fleeting for two English blokes in Andrew Haigh’s 2011 classic
“Weekend.” Abdel Kechiche’s praised NC-17 epic
“Blue is the Warmest Color,” vividly depicting the passionate relationship between two talented young women. Both films are anchored around tremendous leading performances. If you’re looking for something a tad tamer, the sweet but not syrupy
“The Way He Looks” is a gem. The 2014 Brazilian coming-of-age/coming-out drama is a warmly told tale about the budding relationship between a blind teen and his newfound friend.
Love and lust create trouble in Sarah Polley’s moody romantic drama
“Take This Waltz.” Michelle Williams delivers another awards-worthy performance as a married woman powerfully drawn to her neighbor (Luke Kirby). Polley’s drama is raw and uncompromisingly sexual and nails a daring last scene.
For a film about a middle-aged woman searching for romance, Claire Denis’
“Let the Sunshine In,” starring Juliette Binoche, isn’t all that romantic. And that’s the point. Instead, it’s an acutely observed cerebral plunge about the fumbles and stumbles in pursuit of amour. The last scene involving a session with a psychiatrist is particularly brilliant. (Heck, you might even just want to create a Binoche Valentine Film Fest: “The English Patient,” “The Unbearable Lightness of Being,” “Certified Copy,” “The Lovers on the Bridge” … .)
If your special someone likes a touch of the supernatural, don’t just foist “Twilight” on them. Give these two a go.
In the quirky
“Stardust,” a pre-”Daredevil” Charlie Cox becomes smitten with a literal star in human form (Claire Danes). Neil Gaiman wrote the original story and Matthew Vaughan does a kick-ass job directing it. All that and Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert De Niro, too.
Speaking of “Twilight,” it prompted a rush of YA-adapted films; one that got lost in the deluge was
“Beautiful Creatures,” a campy Southern Gothic with a steamy romance between leads Alden Ehrenreich and Alice Englert. Even Viola Davis, Emma Thompson, Jeremy Irons and Emmy Rossum get in on the action.
Romances on vacation
“How Stella Got Her Groove Back,” but this guilty pleasure of a romantic comedy starring Angela Bassett and Taye Diggs is sexy and fun and SEXY. And that shower scene? Nuff said.
Netflix’s original romance
“Ibiza” can’t compare to “Girls Trip,” but it’s still rowdy fun as a New Yorker (Gillian Jacobs) with an impossible boss falls for an impossibly sweet DJ (Richard Madden) while on assignment. Another guilty pleasure.
It’s received fawning reviews and comes from the filmmaker who gave us the highly touted “Gimme the Loot.” So why is the thoroughly entertaining, risk-taking romantic drama
“Tramps” on so few radars? Gets me. Adam Leon’s Netflix original pairs up a wannabe chef (Callum Turner) and a bartender (Grace Van Patten) — as they unexpectedly fall in love after a New York heist briefcase mixup. It’s so good.
Barry Jenkins is best known for “Moonlight,” but his winning 2008 feature debut
“Medicine for Melancholy” is also a find. A one-night stand leads to some intense conversation for two African-American singles in San Francisco.
Filmmaker Billy Wilder liked to push boundaries, and his tightrope-act of a 1960 comedy/drama —
“The Apartment” — with Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine and Fred MacMurray — certainly covers tough, uncomfortable topics. An employee offers his boss the use of his apartment as a hook-up spot. But that social-climbing move takes a more serious, more personal turn. There’s a lot of edge to this one.
Witty banter, a clever story and two leads — Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell — with ideal chemistry make
“His Girl Friday” such a delight. The battle of wits that ensue over the course of deadline story make this one to watch again and again.
Source : https://www.mercurynews.com/2019/02/11/valentines-day-2019-spice-up-your-romantic-streaming-choices/