For those of you who know me well, you know that I am an emotional man. I listen to love songs exclusively whenever my daughter doesn’t have control of the radio. Literally, Celine Dion’s Greatest Hits is in my car’s CD player right now. My favorite movies are primarily romantic comedies, and Nicholas Sparks is my favorite author. I have been teased about having stereotypical gay tendencies since I was a teenager.
But, that’s me. I have long ago accepted who I am, and frankly, I’d much rather be a man that is in touch with his feelings and empathizes with the world around him than the kind of man who bottles his emotion behind a gruff exterior, or just doesn’t feel at all. I feel it makes me a better writer. In my personal life, it allows me to love more intensely and connect on a deeper level with those around me. Of course, I feel hurt and betrayal more, too. So, for me to write a post about crying is not to be unexpected. Let’s just say it’s in my wheelhouse.
Tonight, I was scanning through the movies and stopped on Never Been Kissed. I hadn’t watched it in a while, and it’s a movie that I’ve seen enough to not have to keep up with it to know what is going on. I had it playing in the background while I wrote. After it ended, I went searching for another movie that fit the same criteria, and I found Mr. Holland’s Opus.
This movie is probably top 20 all-time for me, but it is also on an even shorter list. Because every time I watch this movie, I cry. There are just a handful of movies like this, but they are some of my favorites. The scene that gets me in Opus is at the end when Mr. Holland is given the gift of directing his An American Symphony for the first time. Richard Dreyfuss’ (Mr. Holland) reaction is just too much. Get’s me every time.
Another movie that gets me is Rudy (see, I am a man). When Rudy Rutiger runs out on the field at Notre Dame Stadium, you’d better start passing the tissues my way. Rudy goes through so much adversity just to make it to the Fighting Irish practice squad, to see his dream to play in a real game against all odds is as uplifting a moment as there might be in cinematic history.
The fact that it is based on a true story just makes it that much more inspiring.
But, the scene that will always make the flood gates open is from Forrest Gump. I have watched this movie more times than I can count. It is right there with The Shawshank Redemption as one of my two favorite movies ever. There are several moments in the movie that could qualify as tear-jerk worthy. When Mama or Bubba die, or when Jenny leaves Forrest after their affair. But, the ultimate in bringing on the waterworks is when Forrest is talking to Jenny at her grave. Tom Hanks’ face when he says, “I miss you, Jenny,” might just be the most heart-breaking thing I’ve seen. For someone to finally realize the love of his life and have it torn away so soon, kills me.
So, call me a crybaby. I don’t care. These moments get to me. But, again, that’s me. Are there movies you watch that you can just count on crying? I’d love to hear about your weep inducers in the comments below.