There are movies that tug at the heartstrings and then there are those that make you ugly cry. This month, JB Hi-Fi have collated a range of weepies designed to do just that. Here are eight top tearjerkers guaranteed to leave you howling like a baby. Don’t ration the tissues – buy them in bulk.
“Did you ever know that you’re my hero/ And everything I would like to be?” Are you crying yet? The Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey chick-flick classic is undoubtedly the Mount Everest of tearjerkers, in which the grim reality of losing your best friend and soulmate is milked for maximum effect. Prepare for a tsunami of tears when Bette’s mournful ballad finally kicks in.
There are tearjerkers, and then there are feel-good tearjerkers. If this sounds like a contradiction, watch Lion. The true story of a little Indian boy adopted by Aussie parents, who attempts to find his real ones as an adult, is destined to end in tears – but at least you’ll also be uplifted. To steal the tagline from Ordinary People, “some films you watch, others you feel.”
THE FAULT IN OUR STARS
Terminal illness dramas are particularly upsetting, especially when there are teenaged cancer patients involved – and they fall in love. Based on John Green’s young adult tearjerker that’s loaded with sweet nothings designed to make you howl, star-crossed lovers Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort ensure that their time together is a life-affirming journey, even if it isn’t a long one. Sniff.
We all know that the boat sinks, and that’s tragic enough. But then Jim Cameron delivers double devastation with a traumatic farewell between overboard lovers Jack and Rose. If you don’t feel anything during this moment, your heart is as cold as an iceberg. And by the closing credits, it’s a toss up as to who will be wailing loudest – the audience or Celine Dion on the soundtrack.
A child’s grief has got to be one of the saddest things of all, and nine-year-old Ricky Schroder’s tears at the end of this Jon Voight boxing drama packs an even bigger punch than his onscreen dad. The movie has even been used in scientific experiments to induce grief, and while there have been a lot of tears under the bridge since 1979, it remains a champion tearjerker.
MARLEY & ME
The fact that there’s a loveable labrador involved will give you advance warning that what looks like a romantic comedy will end in tears. “A dog doesn’t care if you’re rich or poor, give him your heart and he’ll give you his,” notes owner Owen Wilson. He’ll also break it when the inevitable happens. Guaranteed to make you cry ugly – even grown men go to pieces watching this one.
When his beloved yellow mutt is attacked and infected by a rabid wolf while defending the family, youngster Tommy Kirk must learn about death the hard way. Surely the cruellest Disney movie ever made, this heartbreaking tale left entire families a mess back in the days when the studio didn’t sugarcoat things. A remake today would likely conclude with a litter of pups.
MANCHESTER BY THE SEA
When you finally discover why Casey Affleck’s character is so emotionally wounded, you’ll not only be crying ugly, you’ll also understand why he deserved the Best Actor Oscar this year. It’s a tough role, and a tough film to watch. A powerful exploration of grief and the search for redemption, Kenneth Lonergan’s New England drama is heartbreaking without being mawkish.