Greatest Tearjerkers
Scenes and Movie Moments
of All-Time

Introduction




Greatest Film Tearjerkers, Moments and Scenes
(alphabetical by film title)
Intro | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10
Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 | Part 14 | Part 15 | Part 16 | Part 17 | Part 18 | Part 19 | Part 20
Part 21 | Part 22 | Part 23 | Part 24 | Part 25 | Part 26 | Part 27 | Part 28 | Part 29 | Part 30

Greatest Tearjerkers: There are many names for tearjerker films - 'women's pictures', 'weepies' or weepers, melodramas, soap operas (or soapers), and more recently, 'chick flicks'. There are many kinds of touching, emotionally stirring films and dramas that bring a tear to the eye, and cause a swelling in the heart. Pathos-filled tales of doomed or short-lived romance, tragic deaths or losses (loss of life, loss of love, loss of dignity, etc.), recovery (recovery of life, recovery of love, recovery of dignity, etc.), or difficult domestic situations are common plot themes in these kinds of films.

Tearjerker plots with heart-tugging, emotional storylines (requiring multiple hankies) usually emphasize sensational situations or crises of human emotion, failed romance or friendship, strained familial situations, tragedy, illness, neuroses, or emotional and physical hardship within everyday life. Victims, couples, virtuous and heroic characters or suffering protagonists (usually heroines) in tearjerkers are presented with tremendous social pressures, threats, repression, fears, improbable events or difficulties with friends, community, work, lovers, or family. The melodramatic format allows the character(s) to work through their difficulties or surmount the problems with resolute endurance, sacrificial acts, and steadfast bravery. Sports films tend to be for men what melodramas are for women, and both often share the same attributes.

Tearjerker Scenes: Many other sites and film books have attempted to compile listings of the most tearjerking moments, scenes and films throughout cinematic history. In Filmsite's listing, two prominent ones are indicated by these two icons:

- UK's Channel 4 website of the 100 Greatest Tearjerkers - with ranking number (#)
- Entertainment Weekly's Top 50 Greatest Tearjerkers issue (November 28, 2003) with ranking number (#)

Films selected on both lists (and on Filmsite's list) included the following (in alphabetical order) - all definitive tearjerkers: An Affair to Remember (1957), Bambi (1942), Brief Encounter (1946), Cinema Paradiso (1988, It./Fr.), Dead Poets Society (1989), E.T.: the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), Field of Dreams (1989), Gallipoli (1981, Aus.), Ghost (1990), Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939), It's a Wonderful Life (1946), Jerry Maguire (1996), Kramer vs. Kramer (1979), Life is Beautiful (1997, It.), Love Story (1970), Now, Voyager (1942), Ordinary People (1980), Philadelphia (1993), Romeo and Juliet (1968), Sophie's Choice (1982), Terms of Endearment (1983), Titanic (1997), To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), Truly Madly Deeply (1991), and The Way We Were (1973). Oddly, the other two polls selected two different versions of The Champ (1931 and 1979).


Note: The films that are marked with a yellow star are the films that "The Greatest Films" site has selected as the 100 Greatest Films.

Greatest Film Tearjerkers, Moments and Scenes
(alphabetical by film title)
Intro | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10
Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 | Part 14 | Part 15 | Part 16 | Part 17 | Part 18 | Part 19 | Part 20
Part 21 | Part 22 | Part 23 | Part 24 | Part 25 | Part 26 | Part 27 | Part 28 | Part 29 | Part 30


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