It isn’t just chick flicks and romcoms that feature good movie kisses. There are many factors that make a memorable kiss and reasons why they are special to us. Each embrace has a unique quality and the ability to stir a different emotion in each of us and something which moves me may be a complete turn off for you. It’s so subjective that it would be hard for us to all agree on which movie kisses are the best but here’s my top 9.
1. The Wet Kiss – Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard in pouring rain at the end of an alley looking for poor old Cat that Audrey had just chucked out into the wet. She finds Cat, shoves him inside her soaking raincoat and then she and George kiss passionately to the tune of Moon River. Poor old Cat gets squashed in between them. (The pouring rain kiss between Andi McDowell and Hugh Laurie in Four Weddings and a Funeral is a close runner up to this one).
2. The Practice Kiss – Some Kind of Wonderful
Who could be failed to be moved when Mary Stuart Masterson shows best friend Eric Stoltz how to kiss in preparation for his upcoming date knowing that she is secretly in love with him? The practice kiss in The Wedding Singer (Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler) is also another pull on the heartstrings.
3. The Dying Kiss – Farewell to Arms
I love this one not so much because of the kiss itself but the drama. Helen Hayes is a British Nurse who marries Gary Cooper during WWII. Helen is in a maternity ward and their baby has just died and she herself is dying. "Oh darling, I'm going to die. Don't let me die! Take me in your arms! Hold me tight! Don't let me go...In life and in death, we'll never be parted...I believe it and I'm not afraid” He kisses her with the sound of bells proclaiming the Armistice in the background. She dies and Gary picks her up, carries her to the window and softly says peace twice as white doves take to the air. Quick, pass me a tissue.
4. The Gay Champagne Kiss – My Beautiful Launderette
My first real view of a screen gay kiss left an indelible imprint. Daniel Day Lewis is a Blonde ex National Front Street Punk and Gordon Warnecke is from a Pakistani immigrant family. To celebrate the opening of Gordon’s uncle’s new Laundromat they kiss, Daniel runs his hand under Gordon’s shirt and then dribbles champagne from his own mouth into Gordon’s. Even though I saw this in 1985, I’ve never forgotten it.
5. The Shut up Kiss – Gone with the Wind
There’s actually a few I could have chosen from this film but this is definitely my fave. After another acerbic exchange and after a few nights being shut out of the marriage bedroom, Errol Flynn interrupts Vivien Leigh’s goading, kisses her fiercely and carries her upstairs with the assertion that “This is one night you’re not turning me out”. It then cuts to the next morning and Vivien is lying in bed purring like a cat that’s just had the cream (and more!)
6. The Welcome Home Kiss – Jerry Maguire
I’m not going to wax lyrical about this. I’m simply going to say “You had me at hello”
7. The Awkward Kiss – the Graduate
Anne Bancroft barely gets into the hotel room before Dustin Hoffman pushes her against the door. She takes a drag on her cigarette and Dustin abruptly kisses her before she can exhale the smoke. This funny episode is closely followed by Dustin putting his hand on Anne’s breast as if he’s feeling the ripeness of a grapefruit. Trés drôle.
8. The Schmaltzy Kiss – an Officer and a Gentleman
Few can compare with the moment that Richard Gere in his pristine white uniform scoops a skanky work clothed Debra Winger in his arms and kisses her. It’s right up where it belongs.
9. The Multiple Kiss – Love Actually
I chose this not because of a particular scene or embrace – although the film is full of kisses generated by all sorts of emotions and situations – but because of the end scene. The film closes with the screen splitting into multiple scenes of kisses and greetings until they are only as big as pin pricks. It’s just a beautiful montage depicting the best way we humans show how much we care. Aaawww!
There are so many that I had to leave out – The parting scene in Casablanca, Maria and Tony’s dance floor kiss in West Side Story, Jessica and Roger Rabbit (!), the beach kiss in From Here to Eternity, Jack Nicholson and Shirley Maclaine’s first kiss in Terms of Endearment, the post-skinny dip three way kiss in Threesome and the spaghetti kiss from The Lady and The Tramp to name but a few. Is your favourite in this list?
Top Photo Credit: angel_shark