Celebrating Valentine’s is possible without going out


Molly Ringwald and that hot lumberjack guy stare lovingly into each other’s eyes in the 80’s classic “Sixteen Candles.” This is your movie if you’re happy and have your lumberjack. (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures)

You don’t need to go out on Valentine’s Day. Everywhere has a three-hour wait, and you probably want to stay at home on your couch with a movie no matter what your Facebook relationship status says. Three members of the Life and Arts staff have gathered their collective love experience to provide these movie selections based on where you and your partner — or lack thereof — are this Feb. 14. 


If You’re Happy in Your Relationship

If you and your significant other are one of those few couples completely content in your relationship, something like “Sixteen Candles” is just enough mush for you. There’s something so awkward and sweet about Molly Ringwald and that hot lumberjack guy. You can cuddle on the couch when they chat across the candlelit table, and laugh together when her sister takes too many muscle relaxers at her wedding. Maybe you can talk about your wedding, while the rest of us throw up.


If You’re Bored in Your Relationship

If you need to spice things up between you and your partner, “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” may do the trick. The completely absurd film about an assassin couple that has been assigned to kill each other is only made better by how attractive Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt look holding machine guns. Rather than inspiring a fight of glass-shattering proportions, hopefully “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” will only encourage you to get a little creative. 


If You’re Trying to Make Your Move

Valentine’s Day could be the perfect, albeit totally cliché day, to make your move on that friend you like as, you know, more than a friend. Find your inspiration in “When Harry Met Sally.” Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan are the leading characters in one of the greatest romantic comedies of all time that will result in both tears and laughter. If nothing else, it may inspire you to play a good game of Pictionary.  


If You’re On Your First Date

The problem with your typical first date Nicholas Sparks movie is that their protagonists are so much more romantically competent than you are, and that’s just an impossible standard to live up to. “Stranger Than Fiction” stars Will Ferrell as an uptight IRS agent — a much easier bar to clear. Ferrell has a whirlwind romance with tattooed baker Maggie Gyllenhaal, and the results are sweet and tender, refreshingly restrained but never cloying. 


If You’re On Your Last Date

If you never want to hold hands again, throw on Steven Soderbergh’s “Contagion,” a paranoia-laden thriller about an epidemic. The film lingers on surfaces touched by infected characters, and if you really want to make the squirms set in, start coughing at inopportune moments. It helps that “Contagion” is starkly unromantic, featuring infidelity, brutal insights into human nature, and Gwenyth Paltrow’s scalp being peeled back during an autopsy. Chances of a kiss good-night after this one couldn’t be worse. 


If You’re Single and Eating Jack in the Box

Valentine’s Day is for lovers and you don’t have one. So to rub it in, we prescribe you a marathon of nauseating proportions. Watch all of the Nicholas Sparks movies. And we mean all. After “The Notebook,” “The Last Song” and “Dear John,” drag yourself in your sweatpants to the theater to see “Safe Haven,” where you can cry in the company of a whole bunch of smooching lovebirds. Pick up ice cream on the way home.  


If You’re Single and Ecstatic

No one who is single and ecstatic will be at home watching a movie on Valentine’s Day anyway. You probably already have plans to go to The White House on Rainey Street for the $15 all-you-can-drink special. Cheers to you and your self-confidence. 

Printed on Thursday, February 14, 2013 as: Valentine's Day can be perfect with just a TV