Four years ago today, I married a woman whose love and continual support has been an instrumental part of my film loving obsession in recent years. Although not a film buff, my wife has always encouraged all of my film related activities. Whether I am taking in film festivals, or spending far too much time with this blogging hobby, she has always been right there cheering me on. So in honor of the occasion, I thought I would briefly share a few films that have left their mark on my marriage.

Dirty Dancing

Dirty Dancing
There are at least five versions (including VHS!) of this film currently in my home. I still cannot fathom why we need so many? However, according to my wife, each one is important. The funny thing is despite all these copies, my wife still feels the need to watch Dirty Dancing every single time it is on television. Long story short, no one puts baby in the trash!

Viva Riva!

Viva Riva!
Though my wife, at least since she has been with me, is open to watching a wide variety of films, she draws the line at excessive violence. Therefore, horror films and certain gangster films are immediately crossed off her list. Enter the now infamous Viva Riva! screening at TIFF back in 2010. Not fully reading the TIFF program book, I assumed the film was a Congo version of a James Bond flick, turns out it was the Congo version of Goodfellas. After enduring an hour of gratuitous violence and sex my wife decided she had seen enough and stormed out of the theatre. To this day Viva Riva! still stands as the only film she has ever walked out on.

Demolition Man

Demolition Man / The Fifth Element
So you know that whole thing about not watching graphic violence, well apparently that only applies to certain films. The violence found in films like Demolition Man and The Fifth Element, two of her favourites, seem to get an instant pass in her books. She claims it is because the action sequences in those films are more cartoonish than realistic. Regardless, do not try to have any sort of conversation with my wife if these two films are on television.


In many ways Breathing is “our” special film. That film experience that we will always remember because it feels like we are the only ones, amongst the film lovers I know, to actually see this gem when it played at TIFF several years back. Playing in the smallest theatre at The TIFF Bell Lightbox, Karl Markovics’ (The Counterfeiters, The Grand Budapest Hotel) directorial debut was a random “what else is playing at that time” pick after the film A Separation sold out. Regardless, we ended up falling in love with this captivating film that unjustly went unnoticed at the festival.

The visitor

Terminator 2: Judgment Day/ The Visitor
We all know the key to a good marriage is love, trust, and respect. However, sometimes it is all about the “little wins.” These are the films that my wife had absolutely no interest in seeing initially, but ultimately ended up loving. My two proudest “little wins” are seeing her do a complete 180 on both Terminator 2: Judgment Day and The Visitor. While small victories in the grand scheme of things; it still brings a smile to my face thinking back to her demeanor both prior to and after seeing those films.

What are some films that will always remind you of that special someone (either past or present)?


    1. She is both cool and weird in that regard. She refuses to watch stuff like Tarantino flicks, though she did enjoy Jackie Brown (another “little win”), but has no problem watching action flicks like the Die Hard sequels over and over.

  1. That’s really sweet. ^_^ My partner and I watched Frozen recently and he’s been exclaiming at random moments during the day how awesome he thought Olaf was, and it cracks me up. He’s also very supportive of my passion for film and my website and joins me to almost all screenings.

    1. Frozen is one film that my wife is eager to see. We just have not found the time to get to it. I am glad that your partner is supportive of your passion for film as well. Frankly, I think it is fantastic that he attends all those screenings with you.

  2. Lovely stuff…I think I’d be the same as your wife if The Fifth Element was on – ie. no talking, lets just watch the film! But I did recently watch Demolition Man for the first time in years and that film didn’t hold up for me. Was bored silly throughout. I also noted that they had changed all references from Taco Bell to Pizza Hut for this British version which I thought was strange since the first version I ever saw in England had the original references to Taco Bell. Apparently they did this for some international releases in places that didn’t have Taco Bell. Completely unnecessary in my opinion but product placement is product placement and if a studio can eek out an extra dollar you know they’ll take the opportunity.

    1. While I understand advertisers spend a lot to have their products in films, I still find it surprising when I hear stories like that. It reminds me of the fuss that was made when Iron Man 3 shot extra footage with specific product placements to please the Japanese market.

      As for Demolition Man’s replay value, I find that the film still works as far as mindless action films go.

  3. Lovely post Courtney! My hubby is not as big a movie buff as I am but we have similar taste in movies when it comes to mainstream movies. We both love superhero or action movies so it’s always fun watching with him. I think lately our love for Captain America (both the first and the sequel) made it fun to watch together. We both also have mutual love for Pacific Rim, ha..ha.. He’s not so much into period dramas tho, but he did enjoy Austenland w/ me. So yeah, he’s a keeper 😀

    1. Superhero flicks are a fun way to bond. My wife has slowly started to appreciate them more and more. Austenland is a film that I still need to see.

  4. Very interesting article, Courtney. Great work!

    For me . . . Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind. It came out as my wife and I were experiencing our rockiest patch, and Kaufman’s deconstruction of a troubled relationship resonated with me. Largely, it still does.

  5. Great stuff here, Courtney. I just love personal posts like this one. The violence thing is really funny to me, because my girlfriend is the exact same way. Hunger… not a chance. Cliffhanger… bring it on. She loves those silly Demolition Man-type action flicks.

    But really man, I quite enjoyed this post. Congratulations to you and your wife!

    1. Thanks, Alex! My wife will not touch Hunger either, and do not even bother trying to get her to watch Shame. Frankly, I am surprised that she not only made it through 12 Years a Slave but absolutely loved it.

      A few days ago she turned down the opportunity to watch The Towering Inferno with me, for fear of it being too violent, but proceeded to proclaim her excitement for the new Godzilla flick. I doubt I will ever truly understand her logic. LOL

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