Right about now, when the Oregon weather gets all Oregon-like, nothing compares to a drizzly Sunday afternoon with the cat, some snacks, and a healthy supply of tissues. The tissues are to dry my eyes, because the routine would be nothing without a few sappy movies to get my own waterworks flowing--particularly since sappy movies often use the well-worn convention of using heavenly downpours to mirror our human sniffling. So, here are a few of the best three-hanky, wear-your-raincoat love stories.
• The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)--Dreamy Catherine Deneuve works in an umbrella shop in a rain-soaked French town, and dates the handsome mechanic with the perfect hair. It's like a fairytale--which of course means everything is doomed. This chick flick is as notable for its sumptuous colors and sung dialogue as it is for attacking the heartstrings.
• Untamed Heart (1993)--Marisa Tomei, at her googly best, attempts to make heads or tails of an oddball, and oddly understated Christian Slater, who believes he has a baboon's heart. Believe me, it's as dopey as it sounds! I love it! While it's more melting snow than pissing rain, the vibe is the same, and the schmaltz is to die for... literally.
• Party Girl (1995)--Parker Posey gives the tear-jerker an attitude makeover. Mary's trying to get her groove on--particularly with the hunky Mustafa--but everyone and everything keeps getting in her way. Some carnal activity in a rainstorm has disastrous results, but it's all build-up for the goofball finish. More of a happy cry, but it's a good break.
• Breakfast At Tiffany's (1961)--The Queen Mother of the genre. Not only does it star the divine Audrey Hepburn as the inimitable Holly Golightly, but it has the ultimate of all endings. Torrential rains, abandoned taxis, and a huge kiss between Hepburn and a pre-A-Team George Peppard, where that poor orange cat gets squashed like an old lady at a Who concert--it'll take you right to the bottom of the Kleenex box.