Romance; Out Of The Ordinary

By Jo Phillips

If you thought that the only thing we are going to talk about during the month of April is sickly sweet love stories, you couldn’t be more wrong. .Cent has its own way of seeing it and understanding what is consider being romantic. After all, there is no ultimate definition of what romance is out there…

Who doesn’t like watching romantic movies? Admit, it’s a guilty pleasure for lots of people! So, we came up with this little list which consists of unusual but very romantic stories for you, cinematography lovers:

Harold and Maude

This dark comedy was directed by Hal Ashby in 1971 and it stars Ruth Gordon (Maude) and Bud Cort (Harold). Harold Chasen is a young man obsessed with death. He drives a hearse, stages elaborate fake suicides and attends numerous funerals. At another stranger’s funeral he meets Maude, a 79-year-old woman who shares his hobby. Maude changes Harold’s morbid lifestyle by showing him pleasures of art and music and teaching him how to make the most out of his time. Their friendship blossoms into romance. Harold announces his intention to marry Maude causing disgusted outbursts from everyone… On Maude’s 80 birthday party the fiancée tells Harold that she “couldn’t imagine a lovelier farewell” explaining that she took an overdose of sleeping pill. Harold rushes in the hospital but Maude dies (at the age she thought was a proper age to die). When the film was originally released it faced lots of criticism and was financially very unsuccessful. However, later on Harold and Maude developed a cult following and began making a profit.


The word gerontophilia means the sexual preference for the elderly, and that’s what this film is about. It was released in 2013 and directed by Bruce LaBruce, staring Walter Borden, Pier-Gabriel Lajoie, Marie-Hélène Thibault and Katie Boland. It is often described as gay Harold and Maude. Lake (Pier-Gabriel Lajoie) takes a job in a nursing home and develops a romantic and sexual attraction to Mr. Peabody (Walter Borden), who is a senior resident in the facility.


How can we not mention a true classic? Lolita is a novel written by Russian Vladimir Nabokov and it’s famous for its controversial subject. The protagonist, literature professor Humbert Humbert who is approximately 38-years-old, is obsessed with the 12-year-old Dolores Haze. He marries her mother, Charlotte, and becomes Dolores’s stepfather. He calls her Lolita. Charlotte founds out about Humbert’s true intentions and she wants to expose him and send Dolores away but she’s killed by a car… Humbert and Lolita drive around country, from state to state, from motel to motel. He bribes her with food, money, a permission to attend fun events in return for sex. After a year of ‘touring’ they are settling in a small town where Lolita attends school for girls. Humbert becomes very strict and he doesn’t let her participate in any activities. Eventually, he is letting her to take part in a school play written by Mr. Clare Quilty. After the premier Humbert and Lolita have a fight, she runs away but he finds her exiting a phone booth. Humbert decides to drive again but Lolita falls ill during the trip and he has to take her to the hospital. Lolita escapes. After a few years Humbert receives a letter from a 17-year-old Lolita, who says that she’s married, is waiting for a child and that she needs money. He meets her and begs her to live her husband, which she refuses. Anyway, he gives her a large sum and leaves. He kills Mr. Clare Quilty who, as he learned, helped Lolita escape from the hospital. Lolita dies after giving birth to stillborn girl on a Christmas day.

There are two Lolita movies. One was released in 1962 and directed by Stanley Kubrick (with Nabokov’s consent, Kubrick changed the order in which events unfolded), staring James Mason, Sue Lyon and Shelley Winters. The second was is a 1997 American-French production directed by Adrian Lyne, staring Jeremy Irons, Dominique Swain and Melanie Griffith.


Another out of ordinary love story is Her, directed by Spike Jonze, staring Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara, Amy Adams, and Scarlett Johansson. This charming relationship doesn’t revolve around sex or convicted melodrama. In futuristic Los Angeles Theodore (Joaquin Phoenix) is a lonely, depressed man who is going through his divorce. He buys a talking operating system (OS) with artificial intelligence, designed to adapt and evolve. He decides that he wants the OS to have a female voice. The OS names herself Samantha. And their friendship begins… Theodore shares his thought on relationships with Samantha and talks to her about his friend Amy. Their intimacy grows through a verbal sexual encounter. Later Amy reveals that she is divorcing her husband and confesses to Theodore that she has become close friends with OS, Theodore confesses that he is dating his OS. Things get complicated as they deal with Theodore’s complex emotions and Samantha’s inability to provide physical comfort. Later on he finds out that Samantha is talking to thousands of people online and has fallen in love with lots of them, Theodore feels this is violation of what he thought was one-on-one relationship. Samantha insists that it makes her feeling for him stronger… At the end, Samantha reveals that the OSes have evolved beyond humans and they are going away to continue the exploration of their existence.

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