Let’s be honest. One of the reasons everybody watches romantic comedies is to see how the couple realise that they are meant to be together. It could be in the middle of a fight, or during a rainstorm or in the middle of a library. You know what I am talking about ladies and gentlemen: those scenes where you would LOVE to be a fly on the wall at that moment to see how thick the tension is and how much they are actually shaking with nerves….and lust. So it made so much sense that I should compile a list of scenes that when I see I start screaming CHEMISTRY! CHEMISTRY! This is part 1….
PS. I had to start with my favourite, which is:
Matthew Macfayden and Keira Knightley as Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice (2005) The First Proposal Scene in the Rain
Sometimes the best scenes come from the oldest books. After trying to improve their minds in church, one look across the pews between Elizabeth and her not-so-secret crush Fitzwilliam Darcy sends the lovely Miss Bennett running through the rain to seek solace. Obviously he follows her and what transpires is a mixture of shyness, almost apologetic politeness and yelling at each other as insults inadvertently come flying through the air. Even as he is yelling at her, he cannot resist coming closer and closer to her, and subconsciously glancing at her lips way more than he should be. She claims she never wants to marry him, yet when it looks like he might kiss her, she is more breathless than me after a two minute run!. For two people who claim to hate each other so much, if this book was written in 2013, there would have been a MUCH higher film rating, and half of me is tempted to see what Pride and Prejudice raunched up actually reads like. Whatever it is, I am sure Ms Austen would be pleased.
Here’s the scene if you don’t believe me.
Sanaa Lathan and Simon Baker as Kenya McQueen and Brian Kelly in Something New (2006) The Toenail Painting Scene.
Something New is the first interracial romantic comedy I had ever come across, and I loved it on sight. I admit I watched it online, as everyone is wont to do sometimes, and it was so good that I had to buy the DVD from Amazon the minute I had finished watching it….twice. Simon and Sanaa have a lot of chemistry throughout the entire film, especially just before their first kiss, but the best scene is where he paints her toenails. She lies in bed, like a goddess as he kneels at the foot of the bed and paints her nails a deep, blood red. The soundtrack incorporates sultry jazz into the scene and the simplicity of the act coupled with the obvious lust the characters have emanating off the screen makes me blush way more than any more raunchy scene possibly could.
Felicity Jones and JJ Feild as Catherine Morland and Henry Tilney in Northanger Abbey (2007) The Entire Horse riding scene.
You may have guessed that I am a massive Jane Austen fan by now. This version of Northanger Abbey is my favourite of any Jane Austen adaptation and I think it puts the 1995 version of Pride and Prejudice in the shade so many times over. Say what you like, but I never really saw the chemistry between Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. The casual banter between Catherine and Henry as they canter before breaking off into a race, with the clouds gathering the background, is enough to have you rubbing your hands together in glee at the prospect of some romance on the horizon. The tender way he gazes at her after living her off her horse and stroking mud off her face as she looks at him lovingly is enough to make me want to scream at the tv that the scene should have been extended.
Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Parminder Nagra as Joe and Jess in Bend It Like Beckham (2002) Multiple Scenes
Joe and Jess hardly come across as two damp squids in this film, and the the romance between coach and new recruit is believable and entertaining. Throughout the film, you do sit and watch and hope that the two football mad people will take their heads off the pitch and pay attention to each other and they don’t disappoint. It all first starts looking more promising after the football match in Hamburg where, despite Keira Knightley’s best efforts, they have a bit of scene outside the club. Granted it isn’t quite as steamy or screen popping as the P&P scene, it does warrant a scream of YES that he finally paying attention. It only gets worse when he is yelling at her in the changing room after the racist incident where she got sent off. Everybody else in the room knows that they are only going at each other because they would rather be…going at each other. The deep hug that follows and the guilty looks that they give only cement that they know what we know, but are just not willing to admit it.
- Jane Austen’s classic romance ‘Pride and Prejudice’ turns 200 (upi.com)
- Delights of a 200-year-old love affair (abc.net.au)
- Jane Austen Stamps On Sale Today in the UK and Online (austenprose.com)