Top 10 Movies I Had a Very Strong Emotional Reaction to

1. Remember the Titans

Well, this one is just plain obvious. It’s a true story. True stories always tend to get me more emotional because… it ACTUALLY HAPPENED!  But for real.

Football, racial issues, Denzel Washington.

I cried over the brotherhood and friendship of Julius and Gary. The journey they took from hating each other, to  the love that they had for each other once they gave each other a chance. They became each others family. And that is beautiful and touching. And over the accident that happened, and then the death at the end. Are you kidding me. You aren’t human if you can get through this movie without shedding a tear.

Also, just the way that people treat each other, and the obstacles they face. It is eye opening, it is real. And the actors made it so very moving and honest.

Yes there is language in this movie, but would it have done justice to the truth of the story if they hadn’t put it in there?

2. Titanic

This is another one of those, based on a true story. Well, not the love story part, but the ship sinking. That actually happened. Many many people died! If that doesn’t make you emotional, then arg on you!

The characters in this made me so angry. Rose’s husband was a dick. The Captain was a pushover. The richies were insensitive, hoity toity jerkoffs. All over the place was the potential to get mad!

Let’s go faster he says! So now the running into the iceberg cant be corrected because they were going too fast.

Let’s not have all those boats on board because it doesn’t look as nice. And now tons of people drowned.

Let’s not fill the boats to capacity because its not comfortable. Again, dead people.

Only the wealthy deserve to be saved, because money means that you are clearly more important.

Rage! RAge!

Then Jack and Rose. They made me feel all mushy and gushy. And I cried. So I got angry at the stupidity of people, and I cried because a sad love story makes one… well… sad.


Jack: Don’t do it.

Rose: Stay back! Don’t come any closer!

Jack: Come on, just give me your hand. I’ll pull you back over.

Rose: No, stay where you are! I mean it! I’ll let go!

Jack: [He approaches slowly, gesturing to his cigarette to show that he is approaching merely to throw it over the side into the ocean] No, you won’t.

Rose: What do you mean, “No, I won’t”? Don’t presume to tell me what I will and will not do, you don’t know me!

Jack: Well, you woulda done it already.

Rose: You’re distracting me! Go away!

Jack: I can’t. I’m involved now. You let go, and I’m, I’m ‘onna have to jump in there after you.

Rose: Don’t be absurd. You’d be killed!

Jack: I’m a good swimmer.

Rose: The fall alone would kill you.

Jack: It would hurt. I’m not saying it wouldn’t. Tell you the truth, I’m a lot more concerned about that water being so cold.

[pause. She looks down at the water. Jack is slowly removing his boots]

Rose: How cold?

Jack: Freezing. Maybe a couple degrees over. You ever, uh, you ever been to Wisconsin?

Rose: What?

Jack: Well, they have some of the coldest winters around. I grew up there, near Chippewa Falls. I remember when I was a kid, me and my father, we went ice fishing out on Lake Wissota. Ice fishing is, you know, where you…

Rose: I know what ice fishing is!

Jack: Sorry. You just seem like, you know, kind of an indoor girl. Anyway, I, uh, I fell through some thin ice; and I’m telling you, water that cold, like right down there…

[He gestures with his chin down toward the Atlantic Ocean]

Jack: … it hits you like a thousand knives stabbing you all over your body. You can’t breathe. You can’t think. At least, not about anything but the pain. Which is why I’m not looking forward to jumping in there after you.

[They exchange glances]

Jack: Like I said, I don’t have a choice. I guess I’m kinda hoping you’ll come back over the railing, an’ get me off the hook here.

Rose: You’re crazy.

Jack: That’s what everybody says but, with all due respect, Miss, I’m not the one hanging off the back of a ship here. Come on. C’mon, give me your hand. You don’t want to do this.

[She reaches her hand back, he reaches his forward, and he helps her back onto the deck]

Jack: Whew! I’m Jack Dawson.

Rose: Rose De Witt Bukater.

Jack: I’m gonna have to get you to write that one down.

3. Pearl Harbor

I think I must have a soft spot for movies based on real events.

The moment I got the most emotional… when Danny died. It kills me every time.

Best friends join the military together. Boy one falls in love with girl. Goes off to war and is presumed dead. Best friend and girl are miserable and lonely. And end up connecting. And hooking up. Baby is created. Boy one shows up, tada! Not dead. Awkwardness ensues. Best friends fight over girl. Girl is distraught. Girl tells Boy one that Best friend got her pregnant. Then Japan gets a bug up its tooty and decides to bomb Pearl Harbor. Best friends get shipped off to war, leaving girl behind with child. Best friend gets shot and Boy one is holding him telling him he can’t die because he’s going to be a father. Best friend starts crying, as he’s dying and says…. “No, you are.”

Hell. I cried. Dang.

If you don’t like romance movies, you probably won’t love this. Ben Affleck, Josh Hartnett and Kate Beckinsale. Yes. But I will tell you, in you like action, the movie won’t be completely lost on you. There is about a 40 minute sequence of action that is beyond terrific.

Michael Bay directed this movie that came out in 2001.

Rafe McCawley: Danny, you can’t die. You can’t die. You know why? ‘Cause you’re gonna be a father. You’re gonna be a daddy. I wasn’t supposed to tell you. You’re gonna be a father.

Danny Walker: No, you are.

4. Lion King

This is not based on real life. 😉 This movie made me laugh as a child, and it made me so sad as a child. And to this day I have the same reactions.

When Mufasa is killed by his own brother, I am filled with rage, and when Simba cries for his father to wake up, I am filled with tears and great sadness. Then when he meets Timon and Pumba… I am full of giggles! My emotions are all over the place with this one!

This is one of those Disney movies that I am dying to have on DVD. Someone buy for me? 😉

Also, as I was reading up on this movie I have seen hundreds of times, I had these super weird revelations while looking at the cast list! So I encourage you to head on over to IMDB and re-discover the voices of these characters. I was laughing as it was all coming together in my head!

5. Eight Below

Can we all awwww right now. This is a movie about sled dogs. And when some of those dogs died because they had to be left behind in the cold Antarctica, I bawled like a baby. Something about animals dying guts me more than watching a person die. And I can’t say I understand why that is, because I don’t. But man I bawled in this one.

Paul Walker (RIP beautiful soul) is the owner and lover of this team of dogs, but the film circles and centers specifically around the dogs. So if you don’t like animal movies, again, don’t watch it. But it is wonderful, I think.

The screen counts how many days the dogs spend on their own. So you get the idea of how long they are fighting for themselves.

The dogs show compassion and love for their teammates. Animals seem to be more compassionate than human beings. This was another emotional point for me. One of the dogs gets hurt and crippled, and the other dogs work together to hunt and feed their teammate.

I have read that the concept of this movie did sort of derive from a true story, however, they went off course almost completely. From what I understand, there were 9 dogs left behind in the true story, and 7 of them died. And as far as how everything came to pass, I think most of it was written out of creative inspiration and not from fact.

The dogs are not given human characteristics, they are represented as true animals with true feelings. And no, they don’t “talk”. It all seems to be represented authentically. A beautiful, heartwarming thing.

Walt Disney Pictures and Spyglass Entertainment.

6. War of the Worlds

I know you are all going to laugh at this one. And to be fair, I really don’t blame you. But the title of this post is movies I had a very strong emotional reaction to, and this one falls under that category.

Not only was my body physically stressed through much of this alien invasion film starring Tom Cruise and a very young Dakota Fanning, but I actually cried at one point during the film.

They weren’t even tears of sadness, or even joy, but perhaps pure relief. At one point you are led to believe that the son has died at the hands of the evil alien invaders. And that really sucks. But at the end, you find out that he’s alive. And at that moment is when I cried. I think because it was this moment where I could release all the built up tension from the entire movie.

There is also a scene shot in a basement with a crazy man, and this causes more of a physical reaction. You get very tense, and in the moment with the characters. Sometimes I feel like the slower paced scenes that are drawn out and suspenseful are more emotional and allow you to get more attached than the ones that are all gory and frantic. Both types of scenes are essential to this type of film though. Some believe that the slow scenes are lame, but they are important for the story building and arch of the characters. They are also important for the audience to breathe and slow down for just a little bit. Yes, I did say they can be more intense, but at the same time your brain is not trying to keep up with the 1000 things going on in the very fast paced action sequences. You need both to carry a film to a more satisfying completion.

7. Every single Harry Potter Movie

I’m fairly certain if you have ever seen these movies, that it needs no explanation. If you have NOT seen these movies… shame on you.

Giggles over Neville.

Anger and rage over Voldemort.

Annoyance and Rage over Umbridge.

Glee and frustration over Ron and Hermoine.

Sadness over Dobby.

Laughter over the Marauders map

Crushes and tears over the twins.

That hardly covers anything.

8. My Girl

Just bought this a couple months ago, because I remember how much I loved it growing up. And then I made my roommates watch it with me. And guess what. I still love it.

And what made me so emotional? When Vada’s best friend Thomas J was killed by a bunch of bees because he was trying to do something nice for Vada. And Vada just cries her little heart out. So I get all choked up every gall darn time too. Even though I know it’s coming!

Interestingly enough, I just read an article that states that the two actors have not kept in any sort of contact. And since they won the MTV movie award for best kiss, it’s a bit of a bummer that they didn’t remain friends. I guess it’s not surprising as their lives have run in very different paths.

Did I mention that Vada is obsessed with death, so her best friend dying just adds this intensity to her already confusing life. (Her mother died and her father runs a funeral parlor, death surrounds this poor girl.)

9. Catching Fire

I almost feel like this needs no words, but that just wouldn’t be fair.

I get frustrated at Katniss for ignoring Peeta, and I hurt… ache really… for Peeta as he has to love her daily only to have her pretend nothing ever happened between them.

The government enrages me the way they treat their citizens. And I tear up when they kill innocent people and beat on Gale.

Then there’s the part where they find out that they have to go back into the arena, it’s gut wrenching.

Then you get to the end and they leave it at this tantalizing cliffhanger. It is the most abrupt ending. And you are left panting on the edge of your seat.

This movie gets a 90% approval rating. Even Rotten Tomatoes gives it an 89% approval rating! So if you haven’t seen it, first off, you shouldn’t have read through this post, and secondly, you obviously cannot go wrong.

And this is information that none of you will care about, but they filmed in Atlanta, Georgia, and if you know me, you know how much I love Georgia. They are filming so many more movies in Georgia, just goes to prove how much my desire to live there is warranted!

10. To Save a Life

Hands down, one of the most incredible movies I have ever seen. And no, I am not talking about talent, or skill, or epic film making. I am talking about story, inspiration, truth. This movie had my emotions all over the place. You have GOT to watch this movie. It touches every aspect of hardship.

Chris Vaughn: Maybe your life was always falling apart, but now you’re starting to care

I think sometimes this quote from the movie is true for a lot of people.

The film came out in 2010 with Randy Wayne (yum) as the lead. says “To Save a Life is a powerful Christian film about suicide, faith, and the power of one person to make a difference in the lives of many. ” You need to watch it, whether you are a believer or not. It may just speak to you in one way or another. It is a movie I own, and watch over and over. 

Honorable Mention: Twilight’s New Moon and Captain America: Winter Soldier

Well, I never say much about my honorable mentions. New Moon is on there purely because of the way my life was at the time of watching it. And I just saw Winter Soldier on Saturday, it’s still in theaters, so I refuse to give anything away because that would be rude. Most of the above movies have been out for a fair amount of time, so you should just have already seen them by now. 😉

Well, there it is folks. I feel like I have been working on this post for a very long time. Please enjoy.

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