It’s almost that time of year again: When you realize there’s only a month left to fulfill all those New Year’s resolutions you thought would be so easy back in January. Now it’s November and you still haven’t managed to watch all those movies you thought you’d get to, your sex life still sucks and you just haven’t been able to stop popping those zits on your back.
While I can’t help you with the last one (and seriously? That’s gross), there’s an easy way to knock off those first two at the same time: Instead of watching movies just to zone out, start taking notes. Do you dream about John Cusack hoisting a boom box outside your window? Think Mr. Darcy is the ultimate man? Still a sucker for the way Mrs. Robinson unrolls her stockings? Take a hint and start modeling your love life a little more after what you see on the screen. (Unless it’s the computer screen. Good luck with that.) Here are a few to get you thinking:
The Striptease (True Lies): Some things change, like the cost of tuition or Britney Spears’ waistline. Others, like the awesomeness of Bob Dylan, don’t. The striptease belongs in this second category. Unless Steve Buscemi is doing it, a striptease will always be sexy. Being a good dancer helps, of course, but just think about the idea: You’re taking your clothes off. In front of someone. Wearing something scandalous (or nothing) underneath. There’s pretty much no way this can’t be hot. Just try not to fall like Jamie Lee Curtis does.
The Costume Party (A History of Violence): A classic go-to move: dress up and pretend you’re someone else. As long as you’re not being asked to wear a mask with the face of your partner’s ex, it can be a lot of fun, especially for you theater kids. In this movie, the wife (Maria Bello) dresses up as a cheerleader to reimagine the high-school romance she and her husband (the glorious Viggo Mortensen) never had. Cheerleaders will always be a popular choice, but get creative. However, I’d suggest leaving out the whole husband-is-a-crazy-ex-mob-murderer aspect of it. In the words of Paris Hilton, that’s not hot.
And sure, the angry-sex-on-the-stairs scene in this movie is pretty incredible (let’s face it, the whole movie is great), but I really can’t advocate starting a fight just for better sex. Or doing it on the stairs. The whole thing looks kind of uncomfortable, to be honest.
The Magic Trick (The Breakfast Club): My friend and I were so impressed by actress Molly Ringwald’s ability to apply lipstick with only her breasts that we devoted a whole week of eighth-grade math class to mastering this trick. But you don’t have to be a 13-year-old girl to appreciate talent. Tricks impress everyone, except maybe David Blaine’s girlfriend. And remember: The trick doesn’t require cleavage, but it helps.
The Rulebreaker (The Virgin Suicides): Everyone likes to do something they’re not supposed to once in a while. The only thing that’s even better is doing it with someone you’re not supposed to, in some place you’re not supposed to — like hooking up on a high school football field, as in the movie. So you may want to look for those tunnels under campus that everyone talks about, or try the Lakefill — probably the best approximation we have to that football field. (You don’t really want to go all the way up to Ryan, do you?) Just make sure your Trip Fontaine doesn’t leave you to wake up alone under the lights.
The Art of Seduction (Titanic): There’s almost nothing sexier than talent. This is why ugly rock stars and athletes can still get laid. The scene where Jack draws Rose makes girls swoon not just because of Leo’s pretty face, but because it’s straight-up romantic: He’s not getting her naked just to get her into bed. Don’t worry if you can’t draw like Leo (fun fact: the drawings in the movie were all done by director James Cameron), because nobody really expects you to be the next Michelangelo. Sure, talent helps, but sincerity matters more. You don’t necessarily have to draw your girl/boyfriend naked; just do something that makes them feel attractive.
Of course, there’s more — there’s always more. Movies are designed to be looked at, and we all like to look at pretty people making out. But The Kiss is not somewhere I’m going to go, just because it’s such a divisive topic. There are zillions of articles debating “The Best Movie Kiss,” and everyone has a different opinion.
Depending on what your tastes are, your fave might be The Notebook, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, that scene in Cruel Intentions where Sarah Michelle Gellar and Selma Blair make out, or even Lady and the Tramp. (What?! It’s cute!)
I’d caution against trying to copy that really hot kiss in Spider-Man — you know, the upside-down one where it’s all rainy and mysterious — just because it looks like water would almost definitely get up someone’s nose. So for movie kisses, you’re on your own. Pick one. I have faith in your ability to find a good one.
Now that you’ve got some ideas floating around, go out there and rent some movies. If anyone asks, you’re doing research. And in a sense, you are, even if it’s not for your Bio class. This kind has a better payoff, anyway.