When I’ve had a stinker of a day, my usual reaction is to storm home, flop on the couch and throw on a DVD. Somehow, escaping into an awesome film helps me to forget my worries and cheers me up no end. But a bad day can’t be remedied with just any film. No way! Pick the wrong movie and you can wind up spiralling into a mood that’s worse than the one you began with. You need something light, funny, action-packed or sweet-as-pie to turn your frown upside down. To help you out, I’ve compiled a list of my 20 favourite bad-day movies.
1. Horton Hears a Who
The perfect movie for days when you’re feeling down-trodden and overlooked. The message of this animated adventure is that “a person’s a person, no matter how small”.
2. The Court Jester
When I’m feeling sick or down, I always reach for a Danny Kaye film. There’s something about his zany style and happy demeanour that can melt away the most foul moods. This comedy is packed with wordplay, dancing and hilarious mix-ups.
3. The Addams Family
If I could pick a fictional family to move in with, The Addams Family would be it. When you’re feeling like you don’t fit in, this is the perfect film to watch. It’s all about loving who you are and letting your freak flag fly.
4. The Birdcage
I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen this film. I can quote huge chunks of the dialogue word-for-word and I always giggle in anticipation when I know one of my favourite scenes is coming up. Robin Williams and Nathan Lane are a magic combination in this film that will tickle your funny bone and tug at your heart strings.
5. Orange County
This film is packed with actors that I adore: John Lithgow, Jack Black, Colin Hanks and Catherine O’Hara to name a few. It’s a good choice for days when you need a good belly laugh, or when you’re lamenting the loss of a dream.
6. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
When you’re feeling under pressure or under the pump, consider taking a leaf out of Ferris’ book. Throw this in your DVD player and let yourself be taken on an adventure filled with hot cars, practical jokes and sexy nurses.
This is my favourite Disney movie of all time. I can’t help but feel cheered by the amazing soundtrack and the tongue-in-cheek jokes in this animated classic. You’ll be singing along in no time, and the songs will stick in your head for days to come.
Perfect for when you just want something silly and frivolous. Filled with jokes that have become embedded in pop culture, this film is funny escapism at its very best.
9. Wreck it Ralph
We all have days where we feel downtrodden. Sometimes we struggle to find our place in the world, and lament that we don’t fit in. If you’re feeling this way, this is the film to watch. It’s fun and sweet, but it has a really important message: that we can all find a way to do what we love and that there will always be people who love us for who we are.
10. The Rocky Horror Picture Show
There’s nothing like a musical to pull you out of a crappy mood, and this one is truly awesome. It’s sexy, racy and truly nonsensical, with a fantastic cast and an awesome soundtrack. You’ll be leaping off your couch to do the Time Warp within the first twenty minutes of the film.
11. The Wizard of Oz
The ultimate feel-good classic, The Wizard of Oz is probably my favourite film of all time. It’s wonderful for so many reasons: the adventure, the soundtrack, the cast and the touching messages. It reassures us that we’re strong enough to face our problems, and that the things that we seek can usually be found within. And, if you’re not feeling up to the task of tackling challenges on your own, there will always be people who will lend a hand. It’s a beautiful film that’s sure to put a smile on your face.
Feeling ugly and unloved? Then this is the film for you. A beautiful fairy tale about self-love and acceptance starring Christina Ricci. Best of all, there’s an appearance by Peter Dinklage, who I have a giant crush on.
13. Can’t Hardly Wait.
High school graduation is over and the class of 1998 are going to party like there’s no tomorrow. A romantic comedy that follows the intersecting stories of 6 teens on the biggest night of their lives (so far)
This dreamy French film celebrates the small pleasures in life, and the joy that comes from living in a magical world of your own creation. Perfect viewing for introverts or people who are having difficulty finding something to smile about.
15. Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion
Whenever I’m feeling like a bit of a loser, I love to watch this film. So, Romy and Michelle work crappy jobs and they don’t have boyfriends, but they’re still totally rad. A perfect film to remind you that you’re awesome even if you don’t feel as though you’re where you “should” be at a certain point in your life.
16. Shaun of the Dead
So, you think you’ve got problems? Shaun’s just been dumped, his flatmates are feuding and he gets no respect from his co-workers. Oh, and he’s in the middle of a zombie apocalypse.
High energy and boppy, Hairspray is a great film to get you grooving again when you’ve hit the skids. The soundtrack is awesome and the cast is stellar. Best of all, the heroes of this tale aren’t the perfect, popular prisses. It’s the underdogs that dominate in this kitsch 60’s wonderland.
18. Kill Bill
Perfect for cranky days and nights when you just want to rip someone’s head off. Throw this in your DVD player and watch The Bride rage and rampage her way to revenge. Not for the faint hearted, but very cathartic.
19. The Boat that Rocked.
This film is worth watching for the soundtrack alone. Set on a pirate radio boat in the 1960’s, this tale of rebellion, sex and adventure will turn your frown upside down.
20. Hercules Returns
A slightly obscure but hilarious Aussie film that will have you rolling with laughter. At the opening of his new movie theatre, Brad McBain realises to his horror that the sound reel of the premier film is in Italian. He and his two pals have to dub the film themselves, and the results are hilarious.
What films do you like to watch on a bad day?