Tearjerkers: Movies that make you cry, and movies where your eyes stay dry

the-greatestImage Credit: The Everett CollectionI first saw The Greatest at the Sundance Film Festival in 2009. I remember squirming in my seat and rolling my eyes at what I felt was the phoniness of the Very Sad Story, about a family dealing with the death of their teenage son in a car accident. I remember I was especially impatient with the histrionics of the mother, played by Susan Sarandon — a made-for-the-movies character  who, in her all-consuming grief, becomes so fiercely obsessed with determining the details of the accident that she shuts out her husband and her hurting younger son and keeps a vigil by the hospital bedside of the comatose criminal who was the last to see the boy alive. I also remember that, on my way out of the screening, I turned to a fellow critic for commiseration about over-the-top hooey, only to see that my colleague, a middle-aged man, was red-eyed from weeping, and could barely speak, so torn up was he by his movie experience. And I felt embarrassed to have intruded on his privacy.

When I watched The Greatest again fourteen months later to review it this week, my tear ducts were no more responsive than they were the first time. Yet I’m not ashamed to give you a list of all sorts of hit-or-miss movies that have left me blubbering while, to the right and left of me, the eyes of neighbors stayed dry: Yentl. Nell. Tyler Perry’s I Can Do Bad All By Myself. The Last Song. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Yep, I’m a dork.

Aside from the fact that Susan Sarandon has turned the role of the Mourning Mom into a specialty ripe for parody (she previously survived dead children in Moonlight Mile, Little Women, and In the Valley of Elah), I’ve got no grand theories as to why one movie opens up my waterworks and another leaves me unmoved and feeling hard-hearted. All I know is that I carry a hanky with me to every movie, because there’s nothing better than a sob in the dark. And there’s nothing lonelier than remaining dry-eyed at a movie that all but sticks onions in your face, begging for a wet reaction.

I’ve shared, now you: Which movies have made you bawl? And which have made you go, meh?

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  • Lisa Simpson

    I rarely cry at movies, but I sobbed uncontrollably at “the Joy Luck Club”. And I’d read the book!

    • Mels

      Yep I’m with you. I never cry in movies and the only one to ever do so was “The Joy Luck Club”. It was so touching.

      • tori

        I’ve never understood what was so sad about The Notebook, yet all of my friends bawl their eyes out every time. Now it takes a lot to make me cry during a movie and I think the last one that did was Schindler’s List.

      • MB4ever

        tori – It appears that you have not been touched by having a family member or someone close slowly slip away (The Notebook) from Alzheimer’s. I didn’t watch this movie until about two year’s after my mother-in-law’s diagnosis. After watching her slowly slip away, I bawled my eyes out!

      • Amy

        I did not cry at The Notebook and I cry at everything. I found the end to be happy because they were together until the end. I mean it was definitely sad but..eh

      • KWise

        I guess I just thought the Notebook- both the book and the movie – were pure crap. Total crap. Thus, I did not shed a tear.

      • caryn

        I started crying at the beginning of the The Notebook because I read the book years earlier and remembered how it ended. I could barely see the words on the page because I was crying so much. The story doesn’t touch me because of the alzheimer’s plot but rather because of the undying love that Noah had for Allie. His dedication and optimism was endearing and touching. Maybe you need to read the book to get the emotions of the movie.

      • dizzy

        You’re not the only, Tori. I didn’t shed a tear when I read the book or saw the movie. It was sad, but it didn’t get to me.

    • G.R.

      Same here. It’s like, you know what happens, but to actually see it played out is still devastating.

    • Jennifer

      Definitely the Joy Luck Club. I think I literally bawled thru the entire movie. The Color Purple was the other one that had me crying so hard I had to catch my breath. Especially the end when Celie finally reunites w/her sister. Complete waterworks

      • aleksa

        Yes. On both accounts.

      • Lisa

        Hi have seen TCP probably 20 times and i absolutely sob at the end each time

      • Zara

        I have a copy of The Color Purple and cry everytime. Another one of Spielbergs besides this and E.T. is Empire of the Sun when Jamie is reunited with his mother and feels her lips and touches her hair, I try everytime to be ready but the young and oh-so-wonderful acting of Christian Bale gets me every time.

      • Terry

        The one that I find most moving the funeral scene in Four Weddings and a Funeral, when he recites the poem. Just thinking about it makes me tear up.

      • dianaw

        The Color Purple and the cemetery scene in Steel Magnolias were Sally Fields character loses it, every time it gets to me. I cry at the end of Ghost to. Hey I’m a girl.

      • Linda

        I cry like a baby throughout The Joy Luck Club. But The Color Purple and Terms of Endearment are the absolute tearjerkers for me. I can catch just the ending of both of these movies and loose it.

      • CN

        I don’t cry much watching movies, But I agree when watching “The Color Purple” I bawl my eyes out as with another small movie “The Long walk Home” with Sissy Spacek and Whoopi Goldberg the ending just gets me every time

      • Jesse

        The Color Purple, without a doubt. Especially the plotline involving Celie’s sister.

    • jared4ever

      Definitely the Joy Luck Club. Total meltdown. The one that might not have set others off but had me alternately crying AND laughing all the way through was “Secrets & Lies”

    • Jennifer

      OMG – it’s good to see that I’m not the only person that becomes a blubbering idiot when watching the “Joy Luck Club”. Whenever I see that movie I want to bond with my mom and sister.
      Another tearjearker for me is “The Color Purple”.

      • Anya

        Oh my, The Joy Luck Club definitely brings me to tears! Here’s to mother issues! And another movie with mother issues that makes me sob (because of the divine-pun intended-Ellen Burstyn) is the Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.

      • ConcernedSoul

        Brokedown Palace made me bawl like a newborn. I’m pretty much dead inside but man, I could hardly breathe I was crying so much. I guess I’m a sucker for friendship and all that jazz.

    • hannah

      I cry at everything. I’m a huge sap. At the end of the Sixth Sense, when the little kid is explaining to his mom how he sees grandma, and she says she’s proud of the mom all the time. Forget it, lost it, had to leave the theater. But I never cried during Terms of Endearment. All I kept thinking was, ‘Die already’.

      • albertkitten

        ha… that was on starz last night & i actually cried while watching that part! for, you know, the thirteenth time!

      • Lisa

        I HATED TOE — could not stand the movie and everyone is blubbering and I was ready to walk out

      • California

        If you want a huge sap, you need to look directly at me! Crying at the end of Sixth Sense? Totally understandable. What did I do? I cried during The Village. Adrian Brody’s character stabs Juaquin Phoenix’s character and I SOBBED. Uncontrollably. Everyone in the theatre looked at me. People rows away turned around to look at me. My mom, sister, and cousins were laughing hysterically because I could not stop. That, my friend, is being a sap. lol

      • deedee

        I cry every single time I watch Terms. Not just cry sob.

      • dani

        I love that scene in the Sixth Sense also – Also in the Village when Juaquin’s character and Dallas Howard’s character express their love for one another while sitting “watch” on the porch.

      • nuffsaid

        Unfortunately, I was going through a divorce with three small children when I saw T.O.E. Needless to say, when the two boys came to the hospital to see her and she had to say goodbye to them – I just lost it. To this day, I still tear up at that part.

      • Gator

        It’s frightening how much alike we are in specific reference to these two movies: That scene in Sixth Sense always gets me a little sad, even after watchig it 10+ times. Yet when I saw Terms years ago, I was mostly unmoved, if not a little bored. And I’m a cancer survivor too!

      • Melanie

        Wow, I agree–I hated the Debra Winger character and she took so long to give up the ghost! What an overrated piece of crap.

      • amelia

        if we want to start talking about sap, I can start crying just thinking about the hospital scene in t.o.e. “its time for her medicine” kills me. perhaps, the most random one though is ‘the hurricane’ – made me sob.

    • Beverly

      I completely agree! When the mother says, “I see you.” I cry like a little girl.

    • Marie

      Same here…The Joy Luck Club made me cry to no end. And another one was Lorenzo’s Oil (also staring Susan Sarandon) – I was literally bawling for reasons unknown to me.

    • Estella

      I am a cryer at movies. Bad ones, good ones but the worst cry I ever had was The Joy Luck Club. I think I was in tears within the first 10 minutes. By the time the movie ended I was in full sobbing mode – walking out of the theater past all the people on-line who thought I clearly had emotional “issues”. Finally pulled it together after the two block walk back to the brownstone. Who knows why certain movies touch people deeply?

    • Christina

      I don’t cry a lot at movies, but I lose it every time I watch Joy Luck Club. I always thought it was cause I’m Asian-American and my mom immigrated to the US so many points are very close to how our relationship is. It’s interesting to hear that it’s so common a tearjerker.

      I have no idea why, but I was bawling several times during Benjamin Button, first when the clock is being erected and the soldiers are rising up to return home. The end of Color Purple and the end of Brokeback when Ennis is playing with the shirts usually get me too.

      • rebecca

        Definitely Brokeback Mountain. What an amazing film!

    • rebecca

      I’m with you. The Joy Luck Club is the first thing I think of when I think of movies that make me cry. I saw is when I was twelve with my stepfather and I started crying when she drowns her son and I didn’t stop until it ended. It still makes me cry over a decade later and in such a profound and unmanipulative way.

    • Ixarix

      I agree with that one, Joy Luck had me crying continuously through out the movie.

  • gary

    Saving Private Ryan, Schindler’s List, Rudy, Hoosiers, Forrest Gump

    • KS

      The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, Saving Private Ryan, Little Women, Steel Magnolias, Fried Green Tomatoes, Brokeback Mountain, Road to Perdition, Toy Story 2, Finding Nemo.

      • John P.

        My siblings and I used to watch Fried Green Tomatoes everyday after school. We’d sob every time. I think my mom would have preferred we watched X-Men or something.

      • Lisa Simpson

        Yes, I did tear up a wee bit at Ruth’s passing. And again, I’d read the book.

      • TheObserver

        Armageddon (yes, with Ben Affleck and yes…I know) Finding Nemo, Balto (yes, I know)

      • Adam

        Agree with The Observer. I know it sounds stupid, and i am not a cryer, but Armageddon gets me every time at the end when Harry is talking to his daughter. First time i have ever seen my dad cry was when i saw that with him in theaters.

      • Sara

        Toy Story 2, when they’re telling Jesse’s story gets me every time! So does the very end of Meet the Robinsons, it’s so happy I lose it. That Rob Thomas song full of minor notes doesn’t help much either.

      • Wiley

        Finding Nemo?? that movie isn’t sad at all! It’s one of my all time favorites and I’ve never once felt sad watching it.

      • SSC

        I AM Legend when he had to kill his dog!

      • mad maggie

        OMG, I started crying during the opening scene in Saving Private Ryan, when the old man is walking through Arlington Cemetary. My boyfriend was like “Are you CRYING? Already?”

      • dizzy

        Lol, I do get teary when Sally Fields stars bawling in “Steel Magnolias”.

      • Trina DisneyFanatic

        Finally, someone mentions a Disney movie. There are several that make me cry, from the beginning with SNOW WHITE to recent films like PRINCESS AND THE FROG. However, the ones that really stand out for me are SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO, DUMBO, THE FOX AND THE HOUND, HOMEWARD BOUND, and THE LION KING. Other Non-Disney movies that have made me cry: every Lassie movie I have watched, from LASSIE COME HOME to the remade version in 2003(?); A WALK TO REMEMBER; every version of LITTLE WOMEN I have seen; BENJI; ANNE OF GREEN GABLES; THE CHRISTMAS SHOES and its sequel THE CHRISTMAS BLESSING; TIMEPIECE; CHARLOTTE’S WEB; THE LAND BEFORE TIME; BEETHOVEN; WHERE THE RED FERN GROWS 1&2; MARLEY & ME. Okay, I think that about covers my tear-jerker movies. I know, I’m such a sap to have so many, but I seriously find myself sobbing every time I watch any one of the movies on my list.

    • Daniel

      Yea. Schindler’s, the only color in the movie, the pink coat. *sob. Forrest, half the movie.

    • mary q contrary

      My brother had to escort me out of the theater after only about 5 minutes of Saving Private Ryan. I don’t know what it was, maybe knowing it was an actual event, but the D-Day scene, well, I was a goner. I couldn’t even see enough through my tears and sobs to navigate myself out.

      • Jennifer C.

        Me too, I have two brothers and when I left the theater, I went home and gave my brothers a hug.

      • mary q contrary

        Forgot to give a couple I DON’T break down during (there aren’t many, I’m a softy). The Notebook was so, so bad. I felt so uncomfortable, because everyone around me was loving it, and I thought it was the lamest, most cheesy hot mess I had ever heard that much buzz about. I didn’t shed a single tear. Dr. Zhivago. Ugh. I’m a huge fan of classics, not to mention BOTH of Zhivago’s leads, but man, I can’t stand it. So boring.

      • Lisa Simpson

        Love “Dr. Zhivago”, but never teared up at it (and I saw the movie before I’d read the book this time). The one that doesn’t do it for me is “Moulin Rouge”. Hated that movie and could not have cared less when Nicole Kidman’s character finally died.

      • Martha

        Dr. Zhivago, really? Which version? I never teared up at the original Lean movie, but my husband and I bawled like babies at the end of the PBS mini-series.

      • Juniper

        I can’t handle violence, or people hurting each other, and a friend tried to make me watch “Saving Private Ryan.” After the first 5 minutes I was sobbing hysterically and ran into the bathroom with dry heaves. Never again.

      • Yes I know it’s weird

        I loved Moulin Rouge!, and cried A LOT. Maybe it’s because I love Christian/Ewan… no, I don’t think so. I cried from the moment Satine declared that she chose the maharaja to the end credits started… Never really got over that film. Love it.

      • springs

        I love Moulin Rouge too! It gets me every time when she leaves him. I don’t really mind the death scene so much though…

      • Yes I know it’s weird

        No, not me either really, but no one notice because I’m already in tears. It is much worse when she leaves him, or when he throws the money in her face and leaves in tears. But his sobbing is heartbreaking…

    • albertkitten

      Forrest Gump for sure! But…why?!

      • ac

        When Forrest realizes the little kid is his . . .

      • s marie

        When Bubba says he wants to go home. Guh! Gets me every time! And when he asks Jenny if little Forest is smart.

      • maggie

        no when he talks to jenny’s gravestone and when she prays that she could be a bird with forrest.
        other movies that made me cry (not in order:
        titanic: mostly at the end when she’s back with jack.
        up: i cried whenever they talked about ellie.
        edward scissorhands: when winona says good-bye to johnny.
        philadelphia: the video of tom hanks’s character as a kid.
        marley and me: i hate jen anniston but i cried when she talked about marley.
        the princess and the frog: when ray the firefly dies (he was my fav character in that movie)
        lion king: i didn’t cry when i was 3/4, but now “dad you gotta wake up” sniff sniff it gets me every time
        et: when eliott thinks et is dead and then he wakes up

        movies that didn’t make me cry:
        avatar: uhhh
        any nick sparks movie: they’re all the same and they all end the same
        steel magnolias: i was more angry than upset at the fact that julia roberts DIED!

      • maggie

        oh i forgot to add toy story 2 and moulin rouge to the “movies i cried” list

    • Hutchy

      I’m not going to read the whole list, but how in God’s name have we gotten this far with no mention of ET??? (puts on scratchy ET voiceand points finger at chest) “Illllll beeee riiiight herrre”. Oh my god. I still remember being in the theater and all you can see are just straight up SOBS all around me, not crying, BAWLING. You dont have a soul if that doesnt choke you up.

      • Luddite

        Me. I don’t like ET.

      • joni

        the part that induces bawling for me during ET is when they’re on the tables side by side and he cant reach him and he keeps screaming “they’re killing him, they’re killing him” ugh, my stomach clenched now thinking about it

      • Jennifer

        Hutchy, that scene and the one in which Elliott realizes he has to let ET go home get me every single time. I can’t help it… the tears just starting flowing.

        Something about Spielberg movies gets me. They’re masterpieces, but I cry every time I watch ‘em. Saving Private Ryan and Schlinder’s List, especially when I remember these are just depictions of what the Jewish people and soldiers went through, respectively.

      • s marie

        ET scared me as a child. I still haven’t seen it all the way through. LOL

      • Amy

        No movie has ever made me cry as consistently as ET. I have seen this movie at least 100 times and I cry every single time. I can’t understand how ET scared anyone (the creature..not the movie it did have scary parts). I just love him so much.

      • dizzy

        E.T. is a tearjerker (at least for me), especially the ending with the movie’s score playing.

      • Trina DisneyFanatic

        Yes. E.T. I can’t believe I forgot that one. I love it!

    • Hutchy

      I dont cry at everything, but two scenes are guaranteed to bring the waterworks: “Oh Captain My Captain” at the end of Dead Poets Society, and when Wonderboy breaks at the end of the Natural and Bobby grabs the Savoy Special. If you dont have some emotion at the end of the Natural, your a fem-boy, thats all there is to it.

      • Drew Grgich

        Dead Poets Society – 100%. Glad to see that I’m not alone. That gets me EVERY time.

      • Crystal

        DPS…oh my god. When I was a kid/teenager, I NEVER cried for sad stuff. Not even my grandmother’s funeral. Then I watched DPS in 9th grade and I was absolutely destroyed by that scene. It is one of my all-time favorite movies.

      • Suze

        DPS is probably one of my all time favorite movies, behind Princess Bride… but yes Oh Captain, My Captain always gets me… that and the suicide scene… and when Ethan Hawke’s character first finds out… A League of Their Own, Fried Green Tomatoes, Homeward Bound (the very very end always gets me), Titanic (the scene where the two daughters were crying because they had to leave their father, yes I have daddy issues), Green Mile, I can’t think of any others. One’s that don’t make me cry, I have to agree with The Notebook, bah…

      • Trina DisneyFanatic

        Suze, I am full-out sobbing whenever I watch HOMEWARD BOUND. Fist, when they have to say good-bye when they leave the animals at Kate’s ranch. Then when Sassy goes over the waterfall, and Shadow is blaming himself, saying he had a duty to protect her. Then when Sassy is reunited with Shadow and Chance. Then when Shadow falls into the pit, and tells Chance and Sassy to go home without him. And finally the end when the animals are reunited with their family, including Shadow, who appears limping and then comes running after Peter turns around. I absolutely love this movie!

    • cf

      RUDY! every time but not The English Patient!

    • Kim

      Schindler’s List caught me by surprise. I was touched but dry-eyed throughout–but then at the end when he breaks down himself about how many more he could have saved…that was it for me. Serious tears.

      • Carlitos

        My God! Me too! That part is just awful. It does it for me every single time.

        Also, in “The Passion of the Christ”, when he falls and Mary has a flashback of him falling as a kid… I tear up just thinking about it!

      • Booker George

        Schindler’s List scene where the Jews he actually saved show up and put stones on his gravestone along with star Liam Neeson is a tearjerker as well.

      • nuffsaid

        @Carlitos – Thank you! That scene of Mary’s flashback brought me to tears. Also, when they were scourging Christ and nailing him to the Cross ….. devastating.

      • Marcus

        Yeah, the end of Schindler’s List and the credits are real tearjerkers.

        I cried during The Green Mile, and another one that comes to mind is the third Lord of the Rings movie. The ending(s) always get to me.

      • elr

        Marcus – Yeah the endings do it for me too. I tear up each time I watch the part of Return of the King when everyone including Aragon bow to the hobbits. I’m getting misty just writing about it. Any dog movie will have me crying also and it doesn’t matter whether they are good or bad.

    • Lace

      Of Mice and Men with Gary Sinise and John Malkovich. I cried for days after I saw that film. It seriously rips my heart out. On the other end of the spectrum is Titanic. Yawn.

      • trex

        Of Mice And Men… hadn’t read the book and cried like a sobbing baby from the moment with the puppy, because I just knew
        The Fox and the Hound… as my dog just went to a “farm” to live. Wow really different times & yet both with dogs.
        Moulin Rouge, when he sings COME WHAT MAY, even on the soundtrack.

    • Hannah

      Braveheart (every time… Freeeeeeeedom)and definitely The Green Mile and Steel Magnolias. Steel Magnolias makes you cry and laugh all the way through it. Other movies that make me cry: Crash, My Girl, PS I Love You, Pay It Forward. I’m sure there’s more. My dad cried in The Blind Side, but I didn’t. It didn’t do it for me.

  • Frugal Gal

    The only reason I cry at “Rudy” is because someone clearly has nailed me to a chair to make me watch it. I know that everyone LOOOOOVES it, and I am a fan of Sean Astin, but I can’t stand that movie. It’s supposed to be about pluck and determination? No. The central message of “Rudy” is “Whine long enough and loud enough and somebody will let you play — you might get a lucky hit, too.”

    No, “Rudy” does not make me cry.

    • gary

      so tell us what makes you cry so that someone who is more snarky than I am can rip you choices apart. or are you dead inside?

      • jodipo

        hey Gary, they also asked for “tearjerkers” that don’t make you cry, so maybe chill out a bit eh?

    • LOL

      Rudy sucks.

    • Lola

      Thanks for being brave enough to admit that! I always thought that I was the only one who felt that way!

    • C

      Agree! Rudy is terrible! I feel like 90% of that movie was him checking his mailbox…

    • cf

      what makes you cry about Rudy is how the other players respected how determined he was and how hard he worked for a spot on the team, and they were all willing to sacrifice their spot to make it happen

      • dani

        Rudy did make me cry when they finally let in the game after staying on the crueling practice squad in hopes he will be allowed to play in an official game.

      • also Jennifer

        No, that’s what makes YOU cry in ‘Rudy’. Some of us don’t find it that affecting. But hey, different people are moved by different things.

      • dawnomite

        i cry when the dad & snotty brother cheer for him when he finally plays. the musical score certainly helps with that!

    • DE

      I don’t care for Rudy at all

    • G

      Oh, Rudy. Distinct memories of seeing that and feeling nothing while my friends on either side of me bawled. Did not get the love of this movie.

      • Jen

        saw Rudy recently for the first time. wanted to cry. didn’t. at all.

    • Meredith

      I’m a sucker for sports movies and underdog-makes-good movies, but I agree- no waterworks for me, and I’m not even sure why not!

  • Brenda

    Imitation of Life with Lana Turner always makes me cry no matter how many times I’ve seen it!

    • queue55

      Absolutely agree! And It’s A Wonderful Life does me in, too.

      • also Jennifer

        I started crying the very first time that Jimmy Stewart tries to get away from his hometown in “Wonderful Life” and kept sniffling the whole time.

      • caryn

        yes! I watch IAWF every Christmas and regardless of the mood I’m in or how many more presents I need to wrap, I ALWAYS cry at the end when everyone is bringing money to help him out.

      • Trina DisneyFanatic

        Yes. IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE. I need to add that one to my list.

    • AA

      OMG!!! I sob during the end of Imitation of Life. No matter how many times I watch it (and I have watched it a ton). I think I cry three or four times during the last half hour of the movie.

    • 3reddogs

      Same here. And Madame X (also with Lana Turner). And two Susan Hayward movies are also guaranteed to reduce me to sobs — I Want to Live and Back Street. (Oh geez, I now have a big lump in my throat just from typing the names of these movies.)

    • 6nnnnnns

      OMG! Totally! And I’m not usually a crier in movies. Others: Dead Man Walking, Meet Joe Black, PS I Love You and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas…oh, and occasionally It’s A Wonderful Life.

  • Teary movie goer

    Top 5: Old Yeller, Terms of Endearment, Steel Magnolias, Marley and Me, and most recently, The Last Song.

    • Sarah D

      Steel Magnolias was RIDICULOUS. I was fine till Sally has her graveside breakdown, it felt so real the first time I saw it. I was bawling.

      • Jessica

        I love how Steel Magnolias calls you out on it with the line “Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.” Because that’s exactly what you’re doing- laughing through your tears.

      • srw

        Steel Magnolias falls into the Lisa category of weepies that don’t make me cry. I know all women are supposed to love it, but not me.

        The hardest I ever cried for a movie was Boys Don’t Cry. I sobbed heavily for about an hour after it ended.

      • lisa

        I totally agree! I get chills just thinking about the scene with Sally Field at the cemetary. That was just insane!)

      • RachelC

        Steel Magnolias is one of my all-time favorite movies – and definitely on my list of weepies. When Darryl Hannah’s character tells Sally Field she wants to name her baby Shelby and Sally says, “she’d be tickled pink – pink…” gets me every time!

      • Larilyn

        My mom and sister and I were sobbing so hard at the end of Steel Magnolias that he had to stop the videotape so that we could compose ourselves. We watched that movie and Dead Poet’s Society on the same night. Still haven’t bawled quite so much in one evening.

      • Mara

        Ugh! What a horrible, cliche-filled piece of southern-fried crap! Couldn’t wait for Julia Roberts in her terrible fright wig to bite the dust!

    • mary q contrary

      If pressed to pick a top five (I’m gonna pretend), I guess they would be, in no particular order, In the Bedroom, UP, An Affair to Remember, Trainspotting (if you’ve seen it, you know exactly which part I’m referring to), and Atonement. I saw the movie before I read the book, and every time I’ve watched it since, I’ve been able to go back to that naive state and am reduced to a soggy, shaking mess EVERY SINGLE TIME.

      • DE

        Yes to In the Bedroom, I was so disturbed by it I can’t watch it again. Yes also to Atonement, saw the movie and went and got the book

      • Monty

        Re: Trainspotting
        I also cry when Spud shats on the sheets and the mother throws it accidently on her entire family.

        Im guessing you actually meant the scene with the mother, sickboy, and the baby?

      • LP

        I totally agree about In the Bedroom… I’ve seen it twice and sobbed through pretty much the whole movie both times. I also cried like crazy at Atonement. I had read the book before seeing it, and so as soon as the movie showed Briony going to see Cecila (Kiera Knightly) and Robbie I started bawling. My boyfriend just kept sitting there going “why is this so sad?? why are you crying so much??”

      • Charlotte

        Oh, In the Bedroom. I remember it came out after I decided to not actively seek out sad movies anymore. Life is sad enough. However, I some how accidently came across that movie and wept uncontrollably several times in that movie. Particularly when the Mom is directing that choir just moments before she receives the devastating news about her son. It’s like you are seeing her last few seconds of normal.

        The other movies on my cry list include The Dead Poet’s Society and High Art. I remember watching DPS in the theaters with some of my high school friends and when all the kids stood on their desk and said “Oh Captain, my Captain” I turned into an embarrassing blubbering mess. I felt so self conscious. High Art – I came out of the theater just weeping when I was walking out onto the street. Such a sad waste of life.

      • Jessica

        An Affair to Remember gets me every time. I watched it with my roommates and I was just sobbing and they were staring at me like I was a crazy person.

    • Maserda

      I cried while reading Marley and Me and the subsequent movie, because I too had a yellow lab that I was close to while I was growing up. She was still alive while I was reading the book, and reading how Marley aged reminded me so much of my dog. When I saw the movie, my dog had already passed but I couldn’t help but think of Cody while I was watching it. Dang, I’m tearing up now as I write this!

      • 3reddogs

        I cried so hard at the end of the book that I haven’t worked up the courage to watch the movie yet (though it’s been sitting on my DVR’s harddrive for weeks). I’ve had Irish Setters for 35 years but I was just as heartbroken when Marley died as if he’d been one of my hairy red fools.

      • Jeanel

        I didn’t read the book and had no interest in the movie but I had heard all about how every cried during it. I never really cry at movies, espcially if I am warned about it, so one day I sat down and watched it and I couldn’t leave my room for an hour after because I was so upset. There is just something about a helpless animal….oh my god!

      • Trina DisneyFanatic

        When I saw MARLEY & ME, I too was thinking about my own personal experience. My family had had a Toy poodle since I was in second grade, and as I am the dog lover of the family, I am definitely the one who loved her the most. She slept in my bed at night, and cuddled with me under the blanket when I would watch TV. The summer before I started college, we took her to the vet to be put down, and I held her while the vet gave her the shot. That was the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life. I too am actually tearing up as I am writing.

  • Andy

    I cry during any movie where a dog dies.

    • kaci

      Me too!

      • KS

        Okay, the movie Sweet Home Alabama was definitely lame, EXCEPT for when she visits the grave of her old dog and apologizes to him for leaving and making him feel like he had done something wrong… oh I was a goner.

    • Snsetblaze

      Me 3.

    • shdrew

      Me 4. I saw “I Am Legend” twice, and each time, you could really tell who all the dog people in theater were. We were all boo-hooing like mad midway through. (and then I kept crying because the movie pretty much sucked after Sam departed. Ha!)

      • C

        Not me. Not an animal person, don’t tear up. Marley and Me didn’t make me cry. : ( I must be heartless.

      • albertkitten

        me 5

      • Drew Grgich

        Try reading the book for ‘I am Legend’. The episode with the dog is about . . . .well, six BILLION times more affecting. Richard Matheson is the man.

      • LP

        I totally agree about the book…. not to mention that the whole story, and the meaning of “I am Legend”, makes so much more sense in the book. Loved it.

    • Jennifer

      Yup. For me I’ve come to the point where if a dog is in a movie I ask someone who has seen it whether or not the dog dies. If the answer is yes, I don’t watch it. I’m sure Marley and Me was a fine movie, but I refuse to subject myself to that emotional trauma. I’m still trying to recover from seeing Old Yeller when I was 9

      • Liz

        I, stupidly, watched Marley and Me on a flight and I literally was sobbing. My friend sitting next to me had to actually tell me to keep it down.

      • Iris

        My god, Old Yeller…They need to put a warning label on that movie. Saw it once when I was 10, can NEVER watch it again. So scarring…

      • kat

        me too!

      • albertkitten

        Iris… They need to put a warning label on that movie! ha! I totally agree!

      • Larilyn

        I cry my eyes out at the end of Lassie Come Home every single time. And Lassie lives!!

      • hazel

        Wow, I completely agree with you! Old Yeller literally scarred me for life!

      • jayemeff

        When Shadow limped over the hilltop at the end of Homeward Bound I pretty much lost it.

      • nuffsaid

        Jennifer, I’m totally with you.

      • springs

        Homeward Bound! Yes! That part had me in tears too.

      • Maria

        I agree about Homeward Bound. The final scene always makes me cry. Any dog movie will do it, though.

      • dawnomite

        oh my word, the saddest dog movie is My Dog Skip. i sob through the whole thing.

    • anonymous

      I cry at any movie with a dog in it. How else to explain my highly embarrassing waterworks during the original Air Bud? (“But…but…the dog doesn’t understand why it’s being abandoned!” *blubbers*)

      • Michele

        I can’t even WATCH scenes where I think a dog will be in any sort of danger. It’s bad.

      • Jessie

        that one got me too

      • Remy

        I refuse to watch that movie – between the poor dog being abdandoned and the stupid clown guy abusing him….waterworks.

    • pylgrym

      I am so there. The exception is The Unbearable Lightness of Being. I thought that movie was such a dud that I now have a category of films that are so bad I didn’t cry when the dog died.

    • Pickles

      My Dog Skip . . . No matter how many times I see it, I cry every time.

      • Kari

        Agreed. Sobbing uncontrollably, completely ridiculous…

      • Josee

        THANK YOU!! I was pregnant when I saw that movie for the first time… I was with my 7 year old son and I was sobbing from the moment he is in the hospital after being hurt, until the boy goes to college and Skip tries to climb on the bed and needs to be helped up… I thought it was hormones so I watched it again NOT pregnant. Nope. I still bawled my eyes out to the utter dismay of my husband who was NOT affected by it at all. Oh well.

      • Kati

        I cannot make it through Skip. Bawl my eyes out every time!

    • Ames

      OK, do I cry in every dog/horse/chimp movie? yes. One time on the EW site, someone just described the plot of “my dog Skip” (I’ve never seen it) and I started crying at my desk. The Little house on the Prairie episode where Laura trades her horse for a stove? Forget about it!

      • Remy

        Don’t feel bad. I read the description of the film Hachiko: A Dog’s Story and had to go to the bathroom to stop sobbing in the middle of the office.

      • beth


        When I saw Hachi I cry uncontrollably for the last half of the movie. I don’t think I’ll be watching again. Too sad.

      • Johnny on the Spot

        OMG I cried just reading the description too. It reminded me of the most tragic thing I’ve ever watched (not kidding AT ALL) – the episode of Futurama where they find Fry’s dog frmo 1999. It is literally the saddest thing ever put on film.

      • Tookie

        I am tearing up just reading about everyone tearing up over movies where animals are hurt or die. Those are the worst!

      • scott

        my dog skip gets me every time and is the reason i have not seen marley and me

      • Elliot

        Oh god, the futurama episode with Fry’s dog! I was sobbing uncontrollably, and I don’t cry at very much.

    • DE

      Me too, and only if it’s by surprise. I won’t watch it if i know it’s going to happen

    • Babs

      We just watched a film on a plane returning from vacation – hachiko: a dog’s story with richard gere. i started crying a the previews and its based on a true story. Look it up; you’ll be in tears!!!

    • Diane

      Definitely My Dog Skip, Old Yeller, Marley & Me…only dog movie I haven’t cried in was Cujo

    • Suze

      Any movie where an animal dies or gets hurt will pretty much have me in tears. The Horse Whisperer in the begining when the horse get’s hit by the truck… yeah I know the girl lost her life, but the fact the horse was hurt had me in tears.

  • Teary movie goer

    Top 5: Old Yeller, Terms of Endearment, Steel Magnolias, Braveheart, Marley and Me, and most recently – The Last Song.

    • Teary movie goer

      I know, that was actually 6. Sorry.. math not strong point.

      • James

        It’s okay, you couldn’t count through the tears

  • Samantha

    Now and Then, Marley and Me, A League of Their Own

    im not usually a crier but when I watch these movies i practically cry the whole time haha.

    • Superstar

      Me too, I cry every time at the end of A Leagur of Their Own! Also Pearl Harbor and I sob during Up.

      • Sydney

        I LOST it during ‘Up.’ My husband just looked at me like I was crazy. lol

      • Eloise

        Me too! SOBBED.

      • jared4ever

        OMG the scene in Toy Story II when the girl doll is abandoned by the side of the road while Sarah McLaughlin sings “When Somebody Loved Me” I was BAWLING!

      • Colleen

        have watched that beautiful opening montage of UP sooo many times, and I cry EVERY time! So beautiful, so sad…..so perfect!

      • albertkitten

        A League of Their Own when Madonna’s “This Used to be My Playground,”
        Beaches when Bette Midler sings “Wind Beneath My Wings,” (gonna get crap for that one, I’m sure!)
        Titanic when they break out the Celine!

      • dani

        Up made me cry also..

      • April

        I din’t like Up at all, and I cry during commercials!! I still can’t understand why everyone thought it was a great movie. It was depressing and mean and sad, but not a crying type of sad. I kept hoping I would like it by the end and I didn’t.

      • Johnny on the Spot

        The beggining UP is by far the most that makes me lose my sh*t the most. I do that hiccup sob thing because the regret and uselessness is so overwhelming. April, that part was depressing and sad, but to come to the hopefulness and life on the other side is really a wonder. That’s why it was great.

      • Ce

        I rarely cry during movies but I had at least three points in Up when I was bawling.

    • Renee

      A League of their own ALWAYS gets me. Every single time.

      Remember the Titans. The Green Mile. Saving Private Ryan. My Dog Skip, Turner and Hooch – just dog movies in general…I don’t see why the dog always has to die.

      • RachelC

        My Dog Skip for sure! I was sobbing at the end of that one – and Old Yeller!

      • Karen

        Omg the first time I saw remember the titans I cried when he accident happened. Other movies that make me cry: an affair to remember, pearl harbor at the end when Danny dies, big daddy, dead poets society, my sisters keeper (oh man I couldn’t stop cryin throughout the whole movie), breakfast at tiffanys, from here to eternity, sleepless in Seattle, eight below

      • Karen

        Oh I forgot to add the movies Click, A Walk to Remember, and beyond borders with Angelina Jolie and clive Owen ( the ending)

      • mceb1213

        The Green Mile! My heart broke when they strapped John Coffey into the electric chair.

      • springs

        Super embarrassing: I was told I would cry when I watched A Walk to Remember and I held it together fine until the wedding. Then, all of a sudden, in front of like 10 people, I broke down sobbing out loud. I couldn’t even get myself under control!

      • dizzy

        I get so weepy with A Walk to Remember (both the movie and book).

  • Courtney

    The movie The Cure kills me just thinking about it. Of course I am the same girl who can cry during commercials.

    • onelove

      YES–The Cure!
      Also, Forrest Gump, Steel Magnolia’s, Now and Then, AI (Artificial Intelligence–come on! he just wanted to be loved),Fried Green Tomatos, City of Angels (when Nic Cage is holding onto Meg Ryan’s body in the road–)

    • Scott

      The cure was so sad. When the mom was driving the kid home I can start crying just thinking about it. Also the part when they were in the tent and the young boy was telling the other about the dream… that was really touching too.

  • Kat

    Wall-E. A lot of Pixar films tug at the heartstrings, but I BAWL when I watch the end of Wall-E. (sniff)

    • Elizabeth

      There is ALWAYS a moment in the Pixar movies when I start welling up:

      Up: when his wife dies
      Toy Story 2: the whole montage of Jessie with the girl who used to have her

      OK, I have to stop already… where are my tissues??

      • Kat

        Oh god, I forgot about Jesse and “When She Loved Me.” (sniff)

        Or in Finding Nemo, when Marlin thinks Nemo is dead/unconscious so he picks him up and it flashes to when he’s a tiny egg. (snifffffff)

      • Ixarix

        That scene in Toy Story 2 gets me as well. I get choked up just thinking about it.

    • LOL

      Wall-E is overrated. Save your tears for something worthy.

    • Anna

      “Up” got me at both photo montages, but more so the one at the end, with the adventure book. I cried like a colicky baby.

      • Jessica

        OH MY GOSH, yes. I’m a big crier regardless, but I was a steaming hot mess pile at Up. The heart-wrenching beginning and the Adventure Book…

        okay, gotta stop talking about it now.

    • anonymous

      Yeah, UP definitely brought tears to my eyes. The Disney movie that gets me most, however, is Dumbo. The Baby Mine song with the Mama elephant rocking baby Dumbo through the prison bars is just so heartbreaking.

      • Daniel

        I cried in Finding Nemo when Ellen DeGeneres fishy got abandoned by Albert Brooks fishy, and she was lost, didn’t know where to go. Then Nemo swims up and she has her moment of realization. That’s such an emotional roller coaster scene.

      • Lisa Simpson

        Dumbo and Bambi – what is it about Disney and cute little animals losing their mothers? Though Dumbo does get reunited with his.

      • not a crier.

        i never cry at movies but i always cry at the end of the fox and the hound. why can’t they be friends?!

      • SAB

        Disney movies are the only movies that can make me cry like never before. Especially Fox and the Hound, Dumbo, and Pinochio just breaks my heart. But more recently, I bawled at the first 10 minutes of UP. There’s just something about cartoons that breaks me down.

      • Larilyn

        The end of Beauty and the Beast gets me every time. And the weird thing… the beginning of the Lion King. It’s just so darn pretty the tears just start going.

      • springs

        I cry every time I watch The Lion King. I can’t stand it when his dad dies.

      • dizzy

        The Lion King gets to me every time, ever since I saw as a kid. I’m 22 now and still cry when Mufasa dies.

    • Lynn

      Wall-E…that’s the one. Not only did I not shed a tear, I nodded off several times. My husband was stunned.

  • Hallie

    Forest Gump and any Bollywood movie worth its salt

    • Martha

      I thought Forrest Gump was incredibly self-indulgent and so overtly manipulative that I got angry while watching it. All the weepy scenes just made me madder.

      • Larilyn

        Finally… I thought I was the only person on the planet that hated Forrest Gump.

      • sbwm

        Hate that movie. My family loves it but I just don’t get it.

      • Karen

        I hated Forrest Gump too. Completely overrated.

  • T

    What is the saddest movie that didn’t draw a tear?

  • dayjarden

    Awakenings. If you don’t cry at that movie, you’re made of stone.

    • Lala

      So depressing! We watched it in high school and there were quite a few tears

    • Amy

      Oh yeah! I love that movie. Robert De Niro was amazing. And Julie Kavner’s line about life being given and taken away from all of us is just so poignant.

  • kaci

    Marley and Me and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas were the ones that made me heave with tears in recent memory.

    • kaci

      The one that didn’t draw any tears (surprisingly) was UP. I brought tissues with me for the first 20 minutes and… nothing.

      • Wiley

        same!! I was expecting to feel so much more emotion while watching UP, but I just.. didn’t…. It was kind of a let down, IMO

    • Frances

      omg, the boy in the stripped pajamas had me bawling! it surprised me how i literally burst into tears
      the only movie that made me do that is the passion of the christ which i cried all the way through, then again i am a christian.

    • Sue

      I agree; sobbed during Marley and Me (about the dog, and the marriage conflict and the miscarriage), and complete wreck after Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Amazing movie; everyone needs to see it. So well made and tragic.

  • AAR

    I was a blubbering mess within the first five minutes of Up. I cried a few times after that, too.

    • Lisa Schwarzbaum

      I cried, too, at UP; I was dry at Avatar….

      • tennisfan

        Was there anything to get teary eyed about in Avatar? Maybe that’s sarcasm? I was for sure dry at Avatar, too, and kind of bored…

      • will

        Yeah I was drier than petrified fruit at Avatar. Same with Titanic, but then again I was 7 and had no feelings.

      • Ames

        I am a huge cry baby, and I was totally dry eyed at Titanic. But I practically had to carry my friends out of the theater (and I went with a group of guys).

      • Lisa Simpson

        I did cry at “Titanic”, but I’d just had to put my cat to sleep and I needed a place where I could cry with a bunch of other people.

      • Amy

        While I didn’t actually cry, I teared up watching Avatar. They were more tears of happiness (which I rarely get), but still…

      • Juniper

        The part in Titanic that made me cry was when the camera panned to the people who were trapped in steerage, and the old people were on the bed holding each other, knowing they were about to die, and the mother was reading a bedtime story to her children, pretending that nothing was happening… yeesh.

    • sfday

      I cried four times in that movie. Loved it. Also Truly Madly Deeply.

      • also Jennifer

        Oh, god, yes, I was in total tears during that scene in TMD where Nina is talking to Jamie about the first night they spent together.

    • Margaret

      Oh, UP. Good gravy. I’ve seen it three times, and each time, I’ve bawled. The last time I watched it with my in-laws and I had to try to hold back the floodgates. That opening montage is unbelievable filmmaking.

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