Notes from the back row 

Films to mend a broken heart

"Ever has it been, that love knows not its own depth, until the hour of separation."

So, there you are. Typical. Alone, cold, shivering. Your coat, soaked through with rain, your face, stained with tears, and all that is left is the ache. The feeling you can only get from a broken heart.

Naturally, with this new-found heartache you’re going to go through a natural progression of stages to deal with your situation. The first stage may be very painful. A good deterrent, would be Stanley Kubrick’s, A Clockwork Orange (1971). Nothing like a little ultraviolence to help you realize that your pain will never be as bad as being beaten over the head with a giant porcelain penis.

Now, if you’re upset about broken plans, due to your recent "singleness", Stanley Kubrick comes through again with The Shining (1980). That little romantic getaway with just the two of you won’t seem so appealing after watching Jack Nicholson tear through a hotel with an axe. Plus the fear in Shelley Duvall’s eyes could never even compare to any kind of head-game look you could give your boyfriend or girlfriend, so you may as well give up now.

Now you find yourself in the stage of blaming the entire opposite sex, for everything. Women, does he have mom issues? Rent Alfred Hitchcock’s, Psycho (1960). You’ll be glad you got out when you did. And for all you men out there dealing with an emotionally unstable female, check out a young Alicia Silverstone in Alan Shapiro’s, The Crush (1993). (Insert a "she’s crazy" noise here).

Another freakish ex is Cameron Diaz in Vanilla Sky (2001). She’s not so hot to trot when she’s driving off a bridge and plummeting you to your mental and physical demise. And yes, it is true; she is that saddest girl to ever hold a martini. You’ll think twice about dating two girls at once after that one.

You may now be at that the point where substance abuse seems like the best answer. Pop in Requiem for A Dream (2000), a beautiful, eye-opening film by Darren Aronofsky. It will make you want to cry, puke, and then get sober. And then call your mom. (In that order.) They should show that movie to high school kids. And just forget about a rebound.

It’s common knowledge to watch any B Grade horror film. My favourite is John Carpenter’s revolutionary independent, Halloween (1978). Everyone knows if you screw around, you’re going to get sliced. And do you really have time to run around frantically from a killer? While you’re falling like a maniac over every blade of grass, he’s walking, and he’s still going to slay you. Stay home. And eat popcorn with dill pickle sprinkles. They’re yummy.

Another good piece of advice would be to not watch Arthur Hiller’s Love Story (1970), ever. The same goes for anything with Kate Hudson. That cutesy crap will not help at this point. If you need Kate Hudson to live, watch Almost Famous (2000), and rekindle the hope in accomplishing your dreams. Wow, what a thought.

Once you’ve gotten to the point where you don’t cry yourself to sleep. (What? No, not you!) You can rent Punch Drunk Love (2002), with Adam Sandler and Emily Thomas. Yes, there may just be someone for everyone.

Woody Allen’s Annie Hall (1977) will make anyone laugh, and if it doesn’t I don’t like you anymore.

Now, finally, to bring back your love and appreciation for life, and all those things that "really matter", watch Jean Pierre Jeunet’s, Amelie (2001). This completely aesthetically pleasing French film will make you want to save the world, put people’s pain in a jar, steal something from someone you love, and take Polaroid’s of it.

At Village 8 Sept. 3-9: Vanity Fair; Wicker Park; The Princess Diaries 2; Open Water; Without a Paddle; Anacondas: Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Bourne Supremacy; Hero; Collateral.

At Rainbow Theatre Sept. 3-9: Alien vs. Predator.

P.S. Everything is going to be OK. You’re not in the film Alive (1993), and you don’t have to eat people to live. If you are, eat this newspaper first.

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