Top 10 Break-Up Movies

I’m bored and I should be doing my dissertation, so naturally I am reviewing 10 films instead! My top 10 movies for after a break-up. We’ve all been there and heard those same old excuses:

– “I think we should see other people.”

– “You deserve better than me.”

– “We’re not working out.”

You’ve cried your eyes out. You’ve stopped yourself a thousand times from texting them. You’ve questioned yourself and tried to convince yourself they’ll take you back. Now all you want to do is wallow in self-pity and begin the healing process – how can you do that?

MOVIES (and ice-cream).

Here are my ranked favorites and why they help us get over them (and ourselves).

10. Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008)

For when you want to call him.

This movie will remind you NOT to call. Not only is this movie hilarious and about an actual break-up (as opposed to a love story), it hits a few home truths and reminds you just WHY your ex is your ex. After his TV star girlfriend Sarah breaks up with him, Peter takes a holiday in Hawaii to forget about her, only to discover that Sarah is there – with her new music star boyfriend! This movie is funny, beautiful and reminds us that we always deserve better than the person who gave up on us.

9. Mamma Mia! (2008)

For when you want to forget about him and smile.

For me, ‘Mamma Mia!’ doesn’t particularly hold any special messages about relationships and break-ups – perhaps it does for other people. But for me, watching this movie was all about singing along to the well known ABBA tunes and generally having a wonderful time laughing at all the characters. So stick this on, get your hairbrush microphone ready and belt out the feel-good tunes!

8. The Notebook (2004)

For when you want to cry about something else.

Now, Nicholas Sparks is one of my all-time favorite authors (if you haven’t already, check out some of his other love stories), but this particularly beautiful love story really shows how you need to work hard on a relationship, and how love does exist for everyone. This tear-jerker will also tug at your heart strings and have you bawling your eyes out about something other than your own lost love, and will have you cheering on the characters in their own little love story rather than pining over your own.

7. Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001)

For when you need a reality check (and a laugh).

Most people will know of our dear old Bridget and can relate to the various disasters she experiences in her urban daily life. Bridget finds herself going from notorious spinster to caught in a love triangle, and whilst battling along with the bad luck life throws at her in her hilarious and clumsy manner, records everything in her diary. This movie will bring you back down to earth, remind you that you can handle life and make you laugh (and cry) at the same time with Bridget’s wonderfully blunt charm.

6. My Sister’s Keeper (2009)

To remind you that life does not revolve around romance.

I watched this movie about 2 days after my last break-up – admittedly, with the intention of indulging myself in a good old cry. However, what this movie instead made me realise is that there is so much more to life than romance and relationships and made me appreciate my life and my family so much more. This movie made me feel selfish for self-pitying myself as much as I had (everyone needs to feel sorry for themselves after a break-up, but perspective does need to be accounted for). This beautiful story WILL have you crying, but you will also have this new found appreciation for your life, which is always a good thing.

5. How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (2003)

To remind you what not to do, now and next time.

I’ll admit, I only watched this the other day, and afterwards I wondered why it had taken me so long to do so. It’s one of those cheesy, American movies where there is a conflict, resolve and love at the end. Which is the perfect kind of movie for when you’re down anyway. What this movie also provides, however, is a wonderful checklist of what NOT to do. After a break-up we all want to call him, text him, contact him because in our minds, we can change his decision. But this movie reminds us of the importance of self-respect, and the fact that if we put too much pressure on guys then they probably will run away screaming. This movie will make you feel liberated, strong and beautiful.

4. Closer (2004)

To remind us that there are worse love situations out there than ours.

As with How to lose a guy.. I only watched Closer the other week after having it recommended to me by a friend. Her exact words were “You think your love life sucks? Watch the screw ups in Closer, you’ll feel much better.” She was right. This movie needs your full attention to be able to keep up with who is sleeping with who, but you will get totally engrossed in the complicated love twists in the story and realize that compared to their weird experiences, your loss of love is pretty mundane in comparison. If nothing else, you’ll be thanking your lucky stars you’re not as messed up as these guys.

3. Hitch (2005)

To remind you there is always someone out there for you.

Hitch is one of my all-time favorite movies anyway, and I’m in love with Will Smith, so I’ll admit to my biased tendencies surrounding this film. However, this is always one of the movies I stick on in times of relationship crisis. It’s a gorgeous story about how anyone can fall in love, how anyone can be loved, and how there is always someone out there just for you. It also reminds us of the importance of being ourselves when falling in love, and how those who pretend to be someone they aren’t when pursuing the love mission will ultimately fail. Warning: Falling in love with the gorgeous ‘date doctor’ Alex Hitchens is inevitable.

2. 500 Days of Summer (2009)

To remind us that there is no ‘the one’.

So, you’re finally beginning to get over him and the sudden scary thought hits you; “was he ‘the one’? was that my only chance?” NO. As this movie illustrates to us very clearly, there is no ‘the one’, there are people who are suited to each other, and there are those who aren’t, and however many break-ups you experience, there is always someone else better for you. We laugh, cry and shout along with Tom throughout his relationship with Summer, but end the movie feeling positive and optimistic about the next stage of our lives.


My number One break-up move.

1. He’s Just Not That Into You (2009)

To help us not to follow ‘rules of dating’ and to just enjoy ourselves.

This is, again, one of my most favorite movies ever anyway for many reasons; the way it’s written, the story lines, the characters and the humor. However, this is always the first movie I watch when in times of love turmoil, without fail. This movie illustrates how trying to learn about the opposite sex is useless, as everyone is different, and much like How to lose a guy.., it teaches us about the importance of self-respect over relationships. It also liberates us from bad relationships and will show us why you are no longer with someone. It shows us that closure and self-love are the first steps to recovery, whilst incorporating all these messages into beautiful individual and entwining stories, with some gorgeous humor along the way.

So, here are my top 10 movies to watch after a break-up! They won’t bring him back and they won’t instantly make everything better, but they help you gain a grip on yourself, remind us of other things and more importantly, make us laugh and cry!

Charlie is a trainee Primary school teacher and flute teacher from the UK and blogs in her spare time. When she’s not at work she’s knitting, baking or sat in Costa enjoying a skinny hazelnut latte. Find her on Twitter and her blog.

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