Have you ever been stuck for a film or show to watch, or book to read? You know you want to desperately immerse into an alternate universe, but you just can’t find the “one”? Well, Bon Vivant has all the answers. Each week, we will publish an article in our Mood Swings series with a different emotional theme, providing you with the best on-screen and reading material to fit your every mood. Do you want the inspirational? The quirky? The depressing? Be sure to check here every Tuesday to find your fix.
There are some days where you are just in need of some love. You may be going through a breakup or completely head over heels; you may be longing for a cuddling partner or you may be that tough guy with a secret mushy side. Whichever way, everyone loves a little romance, and where better to get it than from a great film, tv show, or book? With it being such a popular genre, it is often hard to separate the good from the bad. The genre’s sub-genres even have sub-sub-genres nowadays. So, The Bon Vivant is here to help, with some of the best romances around.
About Time (2013)
From the creators of Love Actually, About Time explores 21-year-old Tim’s (Domhnall Gleeson) discovery of a family secret – that the men are able to travel in time. When he decides to use this to get a girlfriend, he begins to find out it is not as easy as he may have originally thought. This movie will make you laugh, cry, worry, and admire all at once, and despite it’s incredible cast of Gleeson, Bill Nighy, Rachel McAdams, and Margot Robbie, it is so beautifully humble that it’ll touch the hearts of all. If you haven’t already, it’s about time you watch this film (pun very much intended).
Love, Rosie (2014)
Love, Rosie is what would happen if 2008’s Wildchild met The Notebook; a film following a clumsy, humorous, and utterly relatable girl who just keeps missing the love of her life. Rosie and Alex (Lily Collins and Sam Claflin) have been best friends since they were five. Surely they wouldn’t be anything more? We know they belong together, a deep part of themselves does, too. However, life somehow always seems to get in the way. Love, Rosie is the modern rom-com everyone must see, as it explores the notion of true love in all its sincerity, injected with plenty of hilarious mishaps along the way.
Our Girl (2014 -)
This show is an impressive follow-up of the one-off BBC special in 2013. Initially, you may be sceptical about Soap star Michelle Keegan playing a military medic – I know I certainly was – but she delivers spectacularly in this series as the leading lady, Georgie Lane. Whilst the show follows Lane on her first deployment to Afghanistan, it quickly becomes a heart-wrenching love story in which she is torn between her fiancé Jamie (Royce Pierreson) and Elvis (Luke Pasqualino). It is a classic love story made intense with all the action, horror, and drama that military life entails. A must-watch.
Love is another new series, this time coming from Netflix. You may have even passed it a few times in a frantic search for something to watch, but don’t pass this feel-good gem. Created by Judd Apatow, the program explores the lives of a couple (Community‘s Gillian Jacobs and comedian Paul Rust), equally awkward as they are likeable, as they encounter all the troubles a couple might encounter. This show is extremely enjoyable, light-hearted, and honest in its humiliations of intimacy, commitment and other baggage that comes with a modern-day relationship.
The Vampire Diaries (2009-)
The Vampire Diaries took the romantic-drama genre by storm seven years ago and has yet to lose its momentum. The show initially explores the character of Elena (Nina Dobrev), a teenager overcome with grief having lost her parents, who becomes torn between two vampire brothers, Stefan (Paul Wesley) and Damon (Ian Somerhalder). Against a background of thrilling obstacles and violent killings, this love triangle plays on your heart strings in unusual ways, allowing you to get lost in a supernatural world where love can truly be eternal. Each season brings a new and riveting problem for the characters, keeping the audience hooked on the lust, blood, and benevolence that started with the very first episode.
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion (2014)
You may be familiar with the film, Ruby Sparks – well, here is where it all began, with Graeme Simsion’s wonderful novel, The Rosie Project. Love is not a science, but geneticist Don Tillman is set on trying to scientifically find the perfect partner. His project results in Rosie, the girl he hopes will answer all his prayers. However, like all romances, it is never that easy. This romantic book is sweet, heart-warming, and also a comedic triumph, with some beautiful scenes exploring a social misfit trying to find love.
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell (2014)
Eleanor, a new and quirky girl in town, first meets Park on a bus. This meeting sets sail to a beautiful love story between two young teenagers who – through mix tapes and deep conversations – begin to complement each other in ways everyone expects two in love would. Alongside complicated family lives, their relationship intensifies as young love does, creating an aura of nostalgia for the reader. Whilst this book does have a simple plot, it is this simplicity that enables the sweet, yet sad essence of true love to dominate the story.
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (2005)
This love story is not like any other, so extraordinary in its composition that you will never forget it. Clare and Henry met when she was six and he, 36. They got married when Clare was 22 and Henry, 30. How? Because Henry’s genetic clock resets randomly, placing him in the past or future unpredictably at random times. This story follows the couple as they desperately try to find normality within their love, when the presence of Henry is so utterly uncertain. This book will fill you with wonder, laughter, and emotion, and will mark you with its originality for quite some time (unless your genetic clock resets).
To read more from the Mood Swings series, click here.