Is there a better way to spend an evening, than cuddled up on the couch, chomping on some popcorn or nachos, watching a movie that has you in stitches?
If there is, I don’t know it!
Us Brits are very proud of our comedy, and many little films that came out of the UK went on to be worldwide hits such as Notting Hill and Four Weddings and a Funeral. I’m sure you’ve seen Hugh Grant bumbling his way through both.
But there are a few more you might not have seen, or have heard of but never got around to watching. I’m always keen to hear film recommendations – especially as I used to get to the cinema 3 times a week before I had kids, and now I get there once in a blue moon! So, if you need a good belly laugh, some cheering up, or an excuse to just curl up and watch a great movie – then look below.
I’ve listed 10 GREAT films that I personally love…. Confession time: I’ve just downloaded I Give it a Year as I missed it in the cinema. So that’s my viewing for tonight sorted.
So guys, which one will you watch first? I’d love to hear what you think of them!
I Give It A Year 1 of 10
They say that the first year of marriage is the hardest, and this film - the newest of our bunch, released in February - looks at one couple's journey to survive that year. Starring Minnie Driver, Rose Byrne, and Rafe Spall, this film is written and directed by Dan Mazer, who previously worked on the Ali G, Borat, and Bruno movies with Sacha Baron Cohen.
Sliding Doors 2 of 10
Do you believe in fate? What if you'd never gone to that party, caught that bus, gone to that gig? Would your life be different now... You'll never know. Imagine if you could...
In this charming movie, Gwyneth Paltrow (with a faultless English accent) plays Helen Quilley who has just been fired from her public relations job. After she misses her train on the London Underground, the plot splits into two parallel universes - one where she missed the train; one where she managed to catch it. Will fate take Helen along the same path?
With a kicking soundtrack and wonderful performances from the cast, this movie will stay with you long after it has finished.
About A Boy 3 of 10
Will Freeman (played by Hugh Grant) is the shallowest of men in this flick - even refusing to be godfather to his friends' baby. He idles away his days, living off the royalties of an Xmas hit song that his Father wrote. Keen to meet women, he ventures to a single parents group, where he instead meets 12 year-old Marcus - and so begins their friendship. Will might think he is the one teaching Marcus about life, but really, it seems Marcus is teaching him... You might recognize Nicholas Hoult who went on to star in A Single Man and several X-Men movies.
This is the most heartwarming of stories - and if you don't feel all gooey and happy at the end, I'll eat my DVD!
Waking Ned Devine 4 of 10
Word reaches a tiny Irish village - of 52 inhabitants - that one of them has won the national lottery. Two friends scour the village, trying to work out who the mystery winner is, only to discover it is Ned Devine, with the ticket in his hand, and the shock killed him! So to claim the winnings, they'll need to convince the lottery inspector that Ned is alive!
This film was made way back in 1998 - but it hasn't aged a day! Known as Waking Ned in the UK and Waking Ned Devine in the States - this winning little film is a gem. Miss it at your peril!
Calendar Girls 5 of 10
When Annie Clarke's husband, John, dies from leukemia, her close friend Chris Harper, anxious to purchase a comfortable sofa for the visitors' lounge in the hospital where he was treated, hits upon the idea of printing a calendar featuring some of the members of the Knapely branch of the Women's Institute -- discreetly posing nude while engaged in everyday activities...
The calendar ends up being an international news story and the women are flown to Hollywood, where tensions start to rise. This film is based on a true story, and will have you laughing up a storm in one minute and reaching for your hankies the next. Helen Mirren is nothing short of amazing...
Little Voice 6 of 10
Young autistic Laura Hoff, who lives in a decrepit working-class home in Scarborough, suffering from agoraphobia and having to put up with her selfish Mother, Mari -- who nicknames her daughter 'Little Voice' because of her shyness. The only thing that comforts Laura is playing her late father's array of vintage songs by Judy Garland and Shirley Bassey, among others. She flawlessly impersonates these singers, but will this be her ticket out of her dreary existence?
Jane Horrocks plays Laura, starring alongside Ewan McGregor, Brenda Blethyn, and Michael Caine (who won a Golden Globe for his performance) in this film.
Educating Rita 7 of 10
I must have watched this beautiful film about ten times, and I never ever get bored of it. Julie Walters plays Rita, a hairdresser who wants to better herself. She enrolls in a Literature course taught by lecturer Frank Bryant (Michael Caine). Frank has become disenchanted with books and has taken to drinking most days - but Rita's enthusiasm reignites his own, and together, they go on a magical journey.
This film was made in 1983 and won the BAFTA for best film. It is simply two brilliant actors at the top of their game. Maybe in life, it is never too late to learn?
The Full Monty 8 of 10
Six unemployed steel workers, inspired by the Chippendales dancers, decide to form a male strip act in order to make some much needed money. But will they go the 'full monty' and get buck naked on stage? This film was a huge success in the UK, and starred Robert Carlyle and Tom Wilkinson, amongst others. Reviews praised the 'ordinariness' of the actors - making their struggle to becomes strippers all the more real. Maybe one to watch with your girlfriends?!
The Commitments 9 of 10
If you aren't tapping your toes or singing along to this film, then you cannot appreciate music. A bunch of Irish scallies get together to form a band, with the aim of bringing Soul music to Dublin but s their success grows, so do tensions within the band. Will The Commitments stay committed?
So, you might have to get used to the Irish accents, but stick with it - because you are about to hear the best soundtrack in films since The Lost Boys. It may have swearing galore, but it sure has soul...
Wallace and Gromit – The Curse of the Were-Rabbit 10 of 10
This is one for the whole family! Wallace and his much cleverer sidekick, Gromit, create a machine to catch all the bunnies that are wreaking havoc with the locals' prize-winning vegetables. But something darker is afoot... Is it the Were-Rabbit??
Funny, smart and filled with slapstick comedy, this is family viewing at its best. It won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film - one to buy for sure!
Photo credits: IMDB