If you watch all of these movies during a hurricane, it’s a true 4D experience.
Just when we thought hurricane season was done, Hurricane Matthew came in from nowhere to prove us wrong. This Category 4 storm is expected to make landfall in my home state of Florida late Thursday afternoon so I have been stocking up on all the essentials: water, nonperishable food items, flashlights, and movies with excellent rain scenes. The weather outside might be dreadful, but this ode to on screen precipitation might help make the storm bearable.
Pride and Prejudice
This is my number one go-to movie for rainy days, if only because I have seen it a million times. The rain scene in this film brilliantly subverts the typical romantic rain scene trope right straight on its head by actually having Elizabeth turn down Mr. Darcy’s marriage proposal. The scene simultaneously makes me swoon at Mr. Darcy professing his love for Elizabeth and snap my fingers shouting “yas, queen!” at Elizabeth telling him off for breaking up Jane and Bingley and unwittingly insulting her. This time, the rain plays a hand at lowering the inhibitions of the characters. Would they be speaking to each in such heated terms if they were not soaking wet and desperate for shelter?
Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
I love the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but The Two Towers is my favorite. Introductions and conclusions are not crowding the story so there is room for the characters to really develop and grow on the audience. The standout moment that the whole film is building to is the epic battle sequence at impenetrable fort, Helms Deep, that turns out to be a truly beautiful thing to behold. It is such a well-choreographed and executed sequence that the rain really only intensifies. There is a constant tension from the Uruk Hai stomping their weapons on the ground, the sudden downpour of rain right before the first arrow is shot on accident, and the desperation of just a few hundred men facing an army of at least 10,000 Orcs. The only relief in the battle comes from dawn breaking, the rainstorm clearing, and Gandalf riding in in just the nick of time.
Is Hard Rain a good movie? Depends on your definition of good. I mean, just the tagline for this movie is pure gold: “A simple plan. An instant fortune. Just add water.” This 1998 movie gave the world some excellent moments, plus we Floridians might be able to relate to the massive rainstorm and flooding in the film. It is chock full of ridiculous moments like the cast riding jet-skis through flooded school hallways and shootouts in churches. Hard Rain is the perfect movie to watch like midway through the storm when things are getting rough and you need a good laugh.
Singin’ in the Rain
While singing in the rain and hurricane force winds of Hurricane Matthew might not be the smartest idea, watching the 1952 classic probably is. Rain scenes in movies are notorious for being sad or over emotional, but this scene is bright and happy. Gene Kelly sings that he is “laughing at the clouds so dark above” because the “sun is in [his] heart and [he is] ready for love” all for having just kissed Debbie Reynolds. Nothing can bring him down.
The Truman Show
This movie contains many great rain moments, but perhaps none greater than the first rainy scene. Truman is sitting down on the beach contemplating life when, all of the sudden, it starts raining… in just the spot above his head. When he gets up, the stream follows him around until, finally, it just all downpours. It’s largely played for laughs (thanks to Jim Carrey’s great comedic chops), but it’s really a pivotal moment in his ultimate discovery and decision.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
Who says disaster movies have to be serious? And include real weather phenomena? This animated film brilliantly and hilariously parodies disaster movies, only this time, the disaster is food falling from the sky in increasingly larger portions. For example, when a giant BLT skewers the Eiffel Tower in Paris a weatherman cheekily asks why these things happen to major world landmarks first, a twister made from spaghetti and meatballs blows through town, and restaurants remove roofs so that food can fall directly onto patron’s plates. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is the perfect rain movie to watch when the storm is at its worst because it will make everything seem not as bad.
To all those reading this who are in the hurricane’s path, stay safe and stay smart!