• Jenna Van Mourik

Top Ten Comfort Films (A Favorites List)

#comfortfilms #comfortmovies #favoritemovies #topten #anneofgreengables #littlewomen #secretgarden #scarletpimpernel #pollyanna #tuckeverlasting #enolaholmes


I've been on a bit of a binge lately when it comes to movies and television shows. I've spent the last few weeks re-watching ALL of my old favorites, and it's been an absolute blast!

I don't know about you, but in my opinion there are certain movies that just "feel like home." Like you could watch them over and over again, and never get tired of them. You could watch them when you're sad or overwhelmed, and they'll make you feel happier and lighter. You could watch them when you feel happy or content, and they'll amplify those feelings tenfold. They're comfort movies.


Well, because I've been on such a nostalgia kick lately, I wanted to share some of my favorites with all of you! Be sure to let me know if we share similar tastes. I'd love to know what your "comfort films" are, and if there's any that you recommend I try out. Now, onto my top ten! I'll be linking them as well, so that you can find them easily if you want to try any of them out.


(P.S. — these are in NO particular order, because that truly would be an impossible task)


 

Little Women (1994) — I tend to associate movies with different times in my life, where I was when I watched them, what significant parts they played in my growing up years... The March Family made quite a few appearances in my childhood and teen years, and each one of the four sisters made an impact on some part of my personality at one point or another. This is also one of those movies that has a soundtrack that can bring me to tears in a matter of seconds when just one chord is played. Give me all the sentimentality! Little Women is a classic, in any iteration, but this one is my favorite.



Flipped (2010) — This is one of the first movies I ever remember desperately wanting to own for myself on DVD. We used to rent movies from our neighborhood Redbox and Blockbuster, and this was one of them. My parents would find new things to try, and I would always ask for this one every single time and once we brought it home I would watch it over and over again on repeat. Funny enough, once they finally bought it on DVD to have in our personal movie collection, I stopped watching it every night... but I still watched it a lot! ;) This is one of those classic, coming-of-age, first-love, childhood-crush stories that spoke to me on so many levels when it came out and I watched it at the ripe-old age of twelve. It's just genuinely sweet with a lasting, feel-good message. Plus, it's set in the 1960s so it's got a lot of great music and tons of vintage vibes. Easily one of my favorites!



Mr. Holland's Opus (1995) — An "unsung hero" story about a man with big dreams of becoming a great composer, who ends up spending his life as a high-school music teacher instead. In the eyes of the world, he may have wasted his talent, but in the eyes of the students and people he made an impact on, he changed their lives. Again, one of those movies with an amazing soundtrack and all the vintage aesthetics, but mostly a movie with a good message. Sometimes the best plan isn't our plan! I watched this one on Disney+ last night and again this morning, and let's just say someone must have been cutting onions in my kitchen because tears were flowing! If you haven't seen this one, please add it to your list.



Anne of Green Gables (1985) — I don't think I know a writer or a reader who doesn't love Anne of Green Gables. I love Anne of Green Gables so much that I incorporated quotes from the book into my wedding vows, throughout the reception menu, and in the music. Jonathan Crombie will always be Gilbert Blythe to me! I mean, the whole cast really is cemented in my mind as their characters. To me, this movie and the sequel are easily the greatest adaptations of the greatest fictional love story of all time.



Tuck Everlasting (2002) — Hauntingly beautiful soundtrack. I'm still convinced the Tuck family are out there somewhere, and I like to imagine what they're up to these days. Once again, another coming of age film about time, the circle of life, change, and love. I love this movie and would recommend you give it a chance, but ALSO if you ever have the opportunity to see the stage musical, do it! Find a local production, a high school theatre group, or something—it's well worth it. Oh, and bring tissues to that one!



The Scarlet Pimpernel (1982) — They seek him here, they seek him there, they seek the Scarlet Pimpernel everywhere! Well, have I got a secret for you: if you're looking for the Scarlet Pimpernel yourself, look no further than on my television screen because I'm probably watching the movie. This one is kind of iconic in my family and a big crowd pleaser. 10/10 would recommend.



The Secret Garden (1987) — *clears throat* Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the BEST Colin Firth movie of all time. Okay, okay, maybe I'm exaggerating. Maybe Colin Firth—a very very very young Colin Firth—is technically only in this movie for about two-and-a-half minutes. But does that change my mind? Absolutely not. This is the best Secret Garden movie (in my opinion) and I will never not watch it if it's an option. Where you tend a rose, a thistle cannot grow...



Enola Holmes (2020) — This movie was an unexpected gem for me, but when I watched it for the first time, I was overcome with the strangest sense of nostalgia as though I'd seen it before even though that is quite literally impossible. It reminded me of the kinds of movies I loved as a kid, and the bright colors, youthful soundtrack, and fun of the plot made me feel just like a kid all over again! I even bought the soundtrack on vinyl so I could play it from my Victrola while cleaning up around the house. I adored it!



Much Ado About Nothing (1993) — There are many people you can talk to who will tell you that Shakespeare is boring, difficult to understand, not entertaining, dumb... I am not one of those people. Do not come within fifteen feet of me with those opinions, because I will challenge you to a duel. Okay, maybe not really, but you get the idea! Much Ado is my absolute favorite, I have lots of happy memories studying it in high school with my husband (just before we started dating, we got to work on our Shakespeare projects together), and anytime I was given the opportunity to pick a play to write on in college... I chose Much Ado About Nothing. The humor, the wit, the sarcasm, the "will they/won't they," and the hilarity of it all... Hey nonny nonny! Tis simply the greatest 17th century rom-com!



Pollyanna (1960) — You may have sensed a theme in what I consider to be a "favorite." Late 1800s, early 1900s settings, feel-good messages, small-town drama, costumes with lots of lace and frills... This movie checks all of the boxes. I watched this movie all the time growing up (literally, all the time. When I found a movie I liked, I would just watch it over and over again. My poor parents.), but hey, it paid off, because I am still playing the "glad game" to this day.



 

So, what do you think? Do we share any favorites? What are your "comfort films?" How many of these are you adding to your weekend watch list? I'd love to know! Let me know in the comments of this blog post!


Happy watching!


-Jen

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