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Melodramatic motion pictures.

melodramatic motion pictures.

Maudern Movies, a weekly series that curates films for your viewing pleasure.

Life doesn’t always go according to plan—especially when love is involved. From the pining of unrequited love to romance after the tragedy, the dramas of our love lives are often some of the most captivating. And as it turns out, the more creative an individual is, the wilder and more contentious their relationships are. In the last 10 years, before technology took over the dating scene—love, while maybe purer, was certainly more melodramatic. 

Ewen McGregor in Beginners follows a young man’s life after the death of his father—as he finds love and clarity is his new reality. The Oversimplification of Her Beauty is a cinematic triumph that combines animation and live-action that shows a tortured artist’s failures at dating in New York. In Ruby Sparks and Paterson, both well-known and unknown authors struggle with their works as their relationships take on new tones. Appropriate Behavior depicts a young Persian woman’s bisexuality and her battle between her family and her girlfriend. In many of these films, the storylines are crafter by the actors and actresses who play the main characters, making the depiction even more realistic and passion-filled. Here are five melodramas to transport your weekend.

Beginners (2010)
Directed by: Mike Mills
Starring: Ewan McGregor, Christopher Plummer, Mélanie Laurent

After losing his wife and receiving his own terminal diagnosis, Hal (Plummer) comes out of the closet. His son Olivier (McGregor), a failing artist, is shocked and struggles with his father’s news and illness. In his loneliness, he meets fellow commitment-phobe Anna (Laurent), while their feelings for each other grow, their shared fears cause issues.

Where to watch: Hulu, Amazon

An Oversimplification of Her Beauty (2012)
Directed by: Terrence Nance
Starring: Terrence Nance, Namik Minter

Part animation, part live-action—this film follows a young artist who has been stood up for a date. He begins to consider his failed relationships, the point of love and life—as he journey’s through his own artistic mind.

Where to watch: Amazon, Vudu

Ruby Sparks (Fiction, 2012)
Directed by: Valerie Faris, Jonathan Dayton
Starring: Zoe Kazan, Paul Dano, Antonio Banderas

In this romantic fantasy, Calvin (Dano) has a wild case of writer’s block. His first novel was a hit, yet he finds himself stuck. He begins to craft the story of an energetic young woman, but as he writes further his heroine becomes a real person. Things become more complicated when he realizes her actions are controlled by his words. 

Where to watch: Amazon, Vudu

Appropriate Behaviour (2014)

Directed by: Desiree Akhavan
Starring: Desiree Akhavan, Rebecca Henderson, Halley Feiffer

A young Brooklynie’s (Akhavan) bisexuality is challenged by her Persian family’s traditional views. Newly of a relationship, Shirin is homeless and directionless, she begins teaching the art of movie-making to a 5-year old she is hired to watch. Her life in south Brooklyn exploring the art of telling her own story unfolds as she pines for her lost love. 

Where to watch: Vudu, Amazon

Paterson (2016, Fiction)

Directed by: Jim Jarmusch
Starring: Adam Driver, Golshifteh Farahani, William Jackson Harper

In a small New Jersey town, bus driver Paterson (Driver) spends his days following the same routes as he listens to the conversations of his patrons. His simple life begins to take new tones as the poems he writes about his days of driving are championed by his beloved wife (Farahani). 

Where to watch: Amazon