Everyone’s got one particular film that they can always count on to cheer themselves up. At the moment we’re all spending a bit more time than usual at home, and we could probably all do with some good vibes, so we asked RCS staff for their best feel-good films to keep you entertained over the Easter weekend. Better get that popcorn on (recipes below)!
It’s hard to beat a good cartoon, and quite a few staff listed Pixar classics among their feel-good films. Is it the nostalgia of watching cartoons? Or something else?
Being made for children, they usually have good moral storylines, likable characters and non-gory action, so are easy to watch. Also, the animation studios know that it’s not just kids who will be watching the films (some lucky parents will be forced to watch them two or three times a day!) so they are usually very good at making them work on multiple levels for both younger audiences and viewers with a bit more, erm, life experience (the opening scene from Up! anyone?!).
- Finding Nemo
- Monsters Inc.
- Shrek 1 & 2
- Inside Out
- Toy Story 1, 2, 3
- A Town Called Panic
- My Life as A Courgette
“Wall-E is about hope, perseverance and love (and it’s got clips from Hello Dolly). What’s not to love?!”
Ros Maddison, Head of Production
It’s probably unsurprising that when asking RCS staff their favourite films, quite a few musicals get mentioned!
With roots going back to Victorian music halls, stage musicals have been perennially popular for centuries and as soon as the technology developed enough to synchronise film and audio, Hollywood was jumping on the musical train.
Whether it’s Fred Astaire/Gene Kelly/Audrey Hepburn classics, or more modern masterpieces, who doesn’t like singing along?!
- Mamma Mia!
- La La Land
- Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
- The Unsinkable Molly Brown
- Singing in the Rain
- The Sound of Music
- My Fair Lady
- Calamity Jane
- The Wizard of Oz
“I love Seven Brides for Seven Brothers and The Unsinkable Molly Brown because they have the best sing-along songs. They are classic golden oldies that will never grow old and I have fond memories of watching and singing along with my wee granny. Fantastic!”
Andrea McManus, Space Planning Manager
Classic comedies and warm fuzzy feelings
Some films win awards for their unique style, cinematography, storyline or subject matter. Others are far less revolutionary but just have a special mix of elements that nonetheless keep you coming back to them.
There are some of both in this next category: from small budget films (featuring RCS alumni), to uniquely quirky and stylised pieces, and from simple concepts with excellent acting to just plain good fun, the following all leave RCS staff grinning (and sometimes crying) with laughter.
- The Full Monty
- Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgandy
- The Birdcage
- Paddington 1 & 2
- Catch Me If You Can
- The Grand Budapest Hotel
- The Muppets (2011)
- Love Actually
- Pretty Woman
- Green Book
- Local Hero
- Little Miss Sunshine
- Ferris Buller’s Day Off
- Almost Famous
- The Goonies
- Laurel and Hardy’s The Music Box
- Chocolat – especially for Easter!
“My dad and I sat and watched Paddington a few years ago after a big Sunday lunch and we were crying with laughter together on the couch. It’s silly, but so funny and very innocent.”
Ruth Calder, Production Support Administrator (BA Acting/BA Performance in BSL-E)
With all those feel-good films to get through, you’ll need some cinema-style snacks!
Simple popcorn that works every time:
- Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil and 2 or 3 kernels of popcorn in a large, lidded saucepan over a medium heat.
- When the first kernel pops, remove the pan from the heat, pour in more popcorn (approx. 2 handfuls (~80g) per person). Put the lid on and gently shake the pan.
- Count to 30 seconds before returning the pan to a lower heat. This ensures all the kernels are at the same temperature and will pop at the same time.
- Wait for the corn to start popping! Shake occasionally. When the pops reduce to once every 5 seconds, remove from the heat and wait another 30 seconds before removing the lid.
- Sprinkle over your choice of flavouring and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Sweet and salty: 3tsp caster sugar, ½tsp salt
Brown sugar and cinnamon: 3tsp brown sugar, 1tsp cinnamon
Or find popcorn recipes over on the Greatist website that have some more unusual flavourings, together with flavour-paired film recommendations!