Top 10 Weepies

Reach for the tissues because we’re going on a journey of tearjerking heartbreak in the ten best weepies!

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Warner Bros. drama Now is Good is set for DVD release on Jan 21st.

The film introduces us to Tessa (Dakota Fanning), a young girl dying of leukemia as she makes her way through a bucket-list of experiences. When she meets Adam (Jeremy Irvine) she sees the chance to cross ‘losing her virginity’ off the list.

This tearjerker tugs at every heart-string, so in this feature we will take a look at the top 10 films that work those tear-ducts. What films get the tears gushing – is it a sad ending, a happy ending, lost love, found love, rekindled friendships, heartbreaking goodbyes..?

10. Beaches


When the New York child performer CC Bloom (Bette Midler) and San Francisco rich kid Hillary (Barbara Hershey) meet in a holiday resort in Atlantic City, it marks the start of a lifetime friendship between them. The two keep in touch through all the ups and downs of life, in a film that makes audiences laugh and cry in equal measure. If you manage to get to the final credits of this film without shedding a tear then it may be time to get in touch with your emotions.

9. Steel Magnolias


Set around Truvy’s Beauty Parlor in a small parish in modern-day Louisiana, Steel Magnolias is the story of a close-knit circle of friends whose lives come together there. Filled with humour and heartbreak, these “Steel Magnolias” make us laugh and cry as they live out their lives in tiny Chiquapin Parish.

8. Billy Elliot


If you were a young boy growing up in County Durham in 1984 the last thing you would take up is ballet. So when Billy Elliot (Jamie Bell) turns out to have a talent at ballet rather than boxing, it causes quite a stir. Billy Elliot is the tale of a boy finding his feet among the turmoil of family life and an economic downturn that threatens all his family holds dear. This award-winning British drama with have you reaching for the tissues every time.

7. Dead Poets Society


When teacher John Keating (Robin Williams) comes back to his old prep-school to teach English he makes an immediate impact. He inspires his students to embrace a love of poetry and to seize the day. Unfortunately this outlook on life is not one shared by all and when tragedy strikes a group of friends; both Keating and the boys’ worlds come crashing down. This inspiring story of making every minute count will have you weeping for sure.

6. Shawshank Redemption


When Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) is convicted for a crime he didn’t commit, he is sent to Shawshank prison where he becomes friends with the long-serving Red (Morgan Freeman). Shawshank Redemption follows Andy’s time in Shawshank and how this unconventional prisoner inspires hope in a place where there is none. If you are able to get through this epic-tale without a tear being shed then you’re a stronger person than I.

5. The Notebook


This ultimate date movie has all who watch in tears as it takes you on Noah’s (Ryan Gosling) and Allie’s (Rachel McAdams) journey through love, life and everything in-between. As an old man tells the story to a stranger at a nursing home we hear of Noah and Allie’s passionate beginnings, the social-divide that separates them and their reconciliation and passionate love for one-another. Watch out for an epic-weepie of an ending.

4. Toy Story 3


Toy Story and Toy Story 2 did not have audiences reaching for the tissues so Toy Story 3 took many by surprise. With Woody, Buzz and the gang threatened with destruction Disney Pixar really amped up the tear-factor with one of the most emotional scenes in animation history. Whether you grew up with these films or not Toy Story 3 will have you floods of tears. The perfect ending to this iconic franchise.

3. Green Mile


Set in 1930s America, The Green Mile tells the story of how the lives of guards on Death Row are affected by one of their charges: a mammoth-of-a-man called John Coffey, accused of child murder and rape, yet who has a mysterious gift. As his date-with-death comes ever closer the guards begin to wonder what actually happened and experience Coffey’s mysterious gift first hand. This epic drama has moved many-a-man to tears over the years and continues to effect the lives of those who watch.

2. Titanic


James Cameron had a history of aliens and terminators before he embarked on making Titanic, released in 1997. This epic tale of a love that defied the strict social boundaries brought in a record box office that has only been beaten by Cameron’s recent masterpiece, Avatar. Between the two of them, Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Rose (Kate Winslett) produced an ocean of tears from the public’s collective eyes and Titanic fully deserves its #2 spot on the list.

1. Schindler’s List

This winner of 7 Academy Awards fully deserves its place at the top of this list. Steven Spielberg set a new boundary in filmmaking when he depicted the horrors of the Holocaust in Schindler’s List. Defined by many as one of the best films ever made, this tale of one man making a difference has me in tears every time.

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Your turn – what are your favourite weepies?

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About the Author
Editor of Top 10 Films, Dan Stephens is usually found pondering his next list. An unhealthy love of 1980s Hollywood sees most of his top 10s involving a time-travelling DeLorean and an adventurous archaeologist going by the name Indiana.

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  1. amy Reply

    I only cried on The Notebook, coz you know… it’s a freaking sad movie, and I may have teared up a bit on Toy Story 3. The rest, not so much. My favorite weepies have to be Dancer in the Dark, Grave of the Fireflies, Memories of Matsuko (all three from my Top10 movies) and I have recently watched Gf*Bf which is the latest film that comes to mind that made me cry.

  2. Scott Lawlor Reply

    Only one or two missing from recent years, Blue Valentine and 50/50 really got me going.

  3. Louise Reply

    Beaches, Schindler’s List and Titanic are all on my Top Ten Movie Weepies list. I’m going to have to re-write mine because I hadn’t seen Toy Story 3 or Les Miserables before writing it and both made me cry like an absolute baby.

    My list is characterised by two things – the Holocaust and Christmas…

  4. Pete Reply

    Big time agree on your top 3 but have to add United 93 and most recently The Impossible to this list. Definitely something about real life dramas. Then on the hand Armageddon always gets me going too.

  5. Mark Reply

    Also ….

    (1) AI – sad for a lot of reasons; the shot where Jude watches Joel jump from the NY building and Spielberg shows it as a symbolic teardrop in a reflection is strikingly beautiful (or obviously clever, depending on your level of cynicism).

    (2) Ivan’s Childhood – Like some of the best works by Dostoyevsky, Tarkovsky slaps you in the face in the closing moments of the narrative. One of the greatest films ever made.

    (3) The Curious Case of Benjamin Button – too twee for some, too Hollywood for others. Nooo … beautifully sad, insightful and clever film.

    (4) American Beauty – it was only on the third viewing (and admittedly while it was on TV and I was watching it at home with some “help”) I got a little teary when Spacey died … he underwent the classic Hollywood character transformation; he was a good guy.

    (5) Kes – early Ken Loach. Talk about an indictment of the working class.

    I also agree with Pete (above) – there are times when I too have given in to Armageddon.

  6. Castor Reply

    Only The Notebook actually had me like literally crying like a little girl. (that was once, many years ago…). I may have shed a manly tear or two for the ending of The Green Mile ahah 😀

  7. Alex Withrow Reply

    Great list! I actually find that when I cry, it’s from more uplifting moments in films. Most recently, scenes from Rust and Bone, Undefeated, and Flight really rocked me.

  8. Dan Grant Reply

    Any image of Titanic produces a Pavlovian type teaction from me. Im getting teary eyed just thinking about it. Its the number one film for me. ET would be up there too. Marley and Me brought antire theater to a river of tears as well. Nice write up….even though most of those films didnt bring me to tears.

  9. DEZMOND Reply

    I cried most while watching Kate Winslet’s READER, Hugh Jackman’s FOUNTAIN… but I cry more after happy endings in silly romcoms than in sad stories 🙂
    And I know it’s naughty to say this – but most of the cinema cheered, not cried, while watching Leo go under the waves when I watched TITANIC 🙂

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