Valentine’s Day sucks. If you’re in a relationship, it’s a day filled with bad, boxed chocolate, roadside roses, cheap cards, and pajamagrams. (Actually anything from Philly Poster Erica Palan’s bad gift ideas.) Going out to dinner? Prepare to join the cattle call of over-scheduled seating and overpriced prix fixe, which, invariably, ends with a heart-shaped, molten chocolate cake. If you’re not in a relationship, you’re made to feel bad through the onslaught of TV commercials. And while office mates avoid asking you about your V-Day plans, they insist on showing you their just-delivered pajamagrams. You could always go out to a movie, but then it’s possible that the movie couple will a) end up together or b) remain alive.
So this list is for you. You, the single or attached people who would rather listen to Taylor Swift sing live than get/give an Open Hearts necklace. You—my people—who watch Love Story or Dying Young on February 14th because you know someone will die young. Yes there are spoilers ahead, but here are 14 (non-horror) movies guaranteed not to have couples living happily ever after.
KEY TO SYMBOLS
City of Angels
Nick Cage gives up being an angel to be with mortal Meg Ryan. As he takes a shower, she demonstrates improper bike safety: no helmet, not holding handlebars, and face turned upwards. A truck ends their happiness.
Kissing Jessica Stein
After many failed relationships and dates with men, Jessica (Jennifer Westfeldt) decides to reply to a personal ad from a woman, Helen. Wanting more intimacy than Jessica is able to provide, Helen eventually ends the relationship.
(500) Days of Summer
The English Patient
Count Laszlo de Almásy (Ralph Fiennes) begins an affair with married Katherine Clifton (Kristin Scott Thomas). After the jilted husband tries to kill them all in a plane crash, the Count carries barely alive Katherine to safety in a cave. He goes for help but ends up in military jail. When he does return to the cave, Katherine is dead. What happens to the Count? Well it involves severe burns and death by an overdose of morphine. Good times.
Gone With the Wind
Insurance salesman Walter Neff (Fred MacMurray) helps Phyllis (Barbara Stanwyck) to kill her husband. Only problem is she may not actually love Walter but just be using him to help get the insurance money. She shoots him. He shoots her. He stays alive long enough to confess.
Lost in Translation
In a chance encounter at a Tokyo hotel bar, movie star Bob Harris (Bill Murray) meets Charlotte (Scarlett Johanson). Over drinks, karaoke, and a night out in Tokyo, the two become attracted to each other. But when he leaves to return to America, he hugs Charlotte, whispers something in her ear, and kisses her. The end.