Well, Valentine’s Day is coming up, and you all know what that means: 14 posts on some of my favorite romantic moments from some of my favorite films. To review the top 14 romantic moments from last year, go here. Otherwise get ready for the romance and love headed your way.
Romantic Moment #13
Dirty Dancing (1987)
Let’s face it, you all knew this was coming. This one absolutely had to be on the list, I mean how could I not talk about the wonderful film Dirty Dancing?
Actually this is a film I always associate with Valentine’s Day as my sister and I would always watch it and eat heart-shaped pizzas from Papa Murphy’s, brownies, and candy. Lots of candy.
I miss being able to do that with her. She’s always my perfect valentine.
Dirty Dancing is my sister’s favorite movie, and I mean what’s not to like? First of all you have the very, very attractive Patrick Swayze y. I mean Patrick Swayze is amazing: he can sing, dance, and is good-looking. A perfect package.
Second, the film has great music; Be My Baby by the Ronettes, Hungry Eyes by Eric Carmen (love him), Love is Strange by Mickey & Sylvia, She’s Like the Wind by Patrick Swayze, and (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life by Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes.
So the story of Dirty Dancing, (set in the 1960s), is that Baby, (Jennifer Gray), is 18 years old and enjoying a summer trip before joining the Peace Corps. She is staying at a resort with her mother, father, and older sister Lisa. When she gets there, we find out that there is a segregation between the workers.
The waiters are allowed to mix with the rich guests, but the dancers are looked down on and seen as not worth enough to mingle. Baby attempts to cross the barrier and go over to “their” side. She meets Johnny, (Patrick Swayze), and is completely blown away by his confidence and good looks.
One day Baby sees one the dancers, Penny, upset. She tries to comfort her and discovers that Penny is pregnant. And to make it even worse, the father of Penny’s child is the same guy dating Baby’s sister.
As the guy, Robby, won’t help Penny, she has decided to get an abortion. However, she doesn’t have enough money to pay for the illegal operation. Baby is able to get her the appropriate funds, but it doesn’t solve anything as Penny has an important dance exhibition that she and Johnny do at another hotel, and they can’t find anyone to cover for her. Baby volunteers, and her and Johnny grow very close while practicing for the show; ultimately falling in love.
The two have to hide their love as Baby’s father will disapprove, and Johnny could be fired. Their love is tested when Johnny gets accused of stealing and no one believes his alibi. But if Baby tells the truth will it hurt her family and cause Johnny to lose his job anyway?
Most Romantic Moment: Save the Last Dance for Me
Baby has told the truth and saved Johnny as she couldn’t see him fired for nothing. But while she saves him from jail time Johnny is let go, as he “broke” the rules. He receives his summer bonus, but can’t do the last dance of the season and will not be hired again next year. Baby and Johnny say good-bye, and it is so sad! ;(
So they have the talent show, ending on a very tame song instead of Johnny’s razzle-dazzle. Baby is just sitting there, fenced in by her parents in the corner; sad, lonely, and bored.
But then, Johnny comes storming on through the room, he goes to Baby and says some of the best lines ever:
Then he takes Baby up onto the stage and the two dance. They dance the best they ever have. Baby even does the dance move, “the Lift”. Before she failed, but now that she isn’t doing it for any other reason than her love for him, they perfect it!
But the most romantic thing is that he CAME BACK for her! He came back so they could do their final dance together. So they could finally express their love out in the open!
I WANT A JOHNNY!
And the song they use to at the end! It’s so romantic and uplifting. Such a great scene.
Of course being so great of a scene, it gets referenced in other works. In Crazy, Stupid, Love Jacob tells Hannah that his best line to get a girl to sleep with him is that he can recreate the Lift from Dirty Dancing. She insists on him showing her.
And in the TV show Wedding Bands, the band is hired to play at an Adult Prom Party Wedding Renewal. One of the hosts, Bobby has been secretly learning the dance moves, and that night requests the song and surprises his wife by having them dance to it.
To start Romance is in the Air from the beginning, go to Boom Box of Love: Say Anything (1989)
For the previous post, go to Bringing the World to Your Backyard: It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
On the 10th Day ’til Christmas my blogger gave to me
A Jane Austen Birthday Wish!
For those of you who don’t know, today is Jane Austen’s birthday. If she was alive today, she would be 237 years old. I know it’s not a Christmas-y movie, but what kind of Austenite would I be if I completely ignored the fact that it is her birthday on my blog?
Jane Austen was an amazing woman who faced all kinds of adversary. Her father was a minister, and while well off to begin with, they ended up losing most of their money living in poverty. She fell in love with a high class man, and wanted to marry him; but his family intervened and sent him away. She was given another opportunity to marry a wealthy man that would have saved her and her family from destitution, but she couldn’t marry him. She continued to wait for her true love; although he never walked back into her life. Her first book she ever wrote, Northanger Abbey (then called Lady Susan) was published post-mortem. Her second novel and the most famous, Pride and Prejudice, was turned down several times before being published. In fact, it was published after she wrote her third novel, Sense and Sensibility.
Austen wrote not only great stories that have stood the test of time, but wrote about real issues and her more radical thoughts/philosophies, that wouldn’t be as easily accepted if spoken in person. In Northanger Abbey, we are all delighted as the main character is someone we can easily connect to. We all feel like Catherine at times in our lives, hoping that we will have an adventure and meet a dashing hero.
This idea of a girl wanting the life of a novel, and ending up living one is later used and recycled in films such as Romancing the Stone. Austen also pokes fun at all the social graces and little customs one must abide by, even though they are silly. It is a satire on societal rules and the gothic novel itself. However, it is a great book and one of Austen’s favorites.
Pride and Prejudice has so many things that are amazing to it. First of all parts of it are taken from her own life-a middle class woman falling for a high class man. Unfortunately she didn’t get the same ending. But Pride and Prejudice has such wit and wonderful lines; there is a reason why it is referenced in everything, has had a ton of movies and TV shows, spinoffs, vlogs, blogs, etc. I love it because the characters are so real. Elizabeth and Darcy are everywhere in the world. I’m a Darcy myself; every time I read it I always feel for him. But more on our shared traits later. I’m also an Elizabeth, they way she treats Darcy and others, when reading that its like looking into a mirror.
Emma, well I already stated that she and I have a lot alike. Sister’s amor hating you, a guy who won’t stop following you around. In my case 3), a friend who has a trifecta of boys rejecting her, deciding to become a spinster, and has meddled in friend’s love lives…need I go on? There are probably many of you out there who have had similar experiences. Not only that, but Jane Austen was able to share her own ideas of spinsterhood and how being a spinster who could care for one self (like Jane was able to in her writing) was nothing to look down on or pity. Austen said she was going to make a character that only she would love, but Emma has become beloved by all. Just like her modern counterpart, Cher from Clueless, there is something about that girl that is just lovable.
Mansfield Park, while it isn’t my favorite is still a great read. We see a woman, although she is meek and timid through most of the novel, isn’t afraid to say no to a “a good thing”. *Spoiler Alert stop reading now if you haven’t read the book* When Henry Crawford asks her to marry him, even though he is rich and could save her family from destitution, she says no. She holds out for her number one, even when threatened to be kicked out of the Bertram house. Very Austonian there. She even continues to be kind and nice to all around her, even though they constantly use and abuse her. She is a true heroine, very Uncle Tom, never turning to hate or anger.
I know I could never do that; Aunt Norris would have been punched in the eye already.
But Fanny continues to be good, and when everyone else’s lives fall apart; she is there to help all pick up the pieces. The whole guy being blinded by the wrong girl, is also very real, I’ve had two friends like that.
Sense and Sensibility, deals with the line between expression. I liked how there is the question of whether too much of either is bad and how much does one need? We have Marianne full of sensibilities, wearing her heart on her sleeve; but we see this gets her into trouble as she expresses too much, before anything is promised to her.
Elinor, expresses nothing, being purely intellectual and sensible; but this causes her to almost lose the man she loves.
While both sisters are the best of friends; their extremes cause the other to never fully know their sister. Marianne can never see what Elinor is feeling and makes all these assumptions about a “frozen” heart. Elinor on the other hand, never imagines that Marianne has any sense as she assumes she is solely governed by feelings. I liked how the sisters were never privy to each others complete secrets as I feel this is realistic. I can see myself and my sister in these.
Persuasion, is one of the saddest novels that Austen wrote, because even though it ends happily it was pure wish fulfillment. *Spoiler Alert stop reading now if you haven’t read the book* Anne is persuaded by her friend to not marry her love. He ends up leaving but returns, and after a series of misunderstandings the two are reunited. Austen always hoped that her love would return just like Captain Wentworth, but he never did.
She also uses a strong irony in this as Anne was rich when she turned down poor Wentworth, but when he returns Anne is poor and Wentworth rich. I simply love this book because it seems so real, how the characters react and treat each other are the emotions they actually would. Austen also does a great line about women being portrayed as a “femme fatale” so often as men are the writers of these novels; therefore the view is biased. Great book to check out.
Austen lived only 42 years, but changed the history of the novel with her great works. She has changed my life and I hope you give her a chance to influence yours. Happy Birthday Jane!
Now to tie this into Christmas:
“The very first day that [James] Morland came to us last Christmas–the very first moment I beheld him–my heart was irrecoverably gone.”
-Northanger Abbey, pg 142
“I sincerely hope your Christmas in Hertfordshire may abound in the gaieties which the season generally brings…”
-Pride and Prejudice, pg 122
“I remember last Christmas…he danced from eight o’clock to four, without once sitting down.”
Sense and Sensibility, pg 30
“If they were at home to grace the ball, a ball you would have this very Christmas.”
-Mansfield Park, pg 262
“At Christmas every body invites their friends and thinks little of even the worst weather.”
-Emma, pg 97
“On one side was a table occupied by chattering girls, cutting up silk and gold paper; and on the other were tressels and trays, bending under the weight of brawn and cold pies, where riotous boys were holding high revel; the whole completed by a roaring Christmas fire…”
Persuasion, pg 80
So there you go! Merry Christmas!
To start the 12 Posts of Christmas from the beginning, go to On the 12th Day ’til Christmas: The 12 Men of Christmas (2009)
For the previous post, go to On the 11th Day ’til Christmas: The Santa Clause (1994)
For another Northanger Abbey post, go to Mr. Tilney’s Dating Tips
For more Pride & Prejudice, go to On the 12th Day ‘Til Christmas: The 12 Men of Christmas (2009)
For another Sense & Sensibility post, go to Let’s Hear It For the Boys
For more on Emma, go to By George He’s Perfect!
For more on Mansfield Park, go to Part IX: Adventures in Movie Lines
For another Persuasion post go to A Fredrick Wentworth Sighting