Friday, December 14, 2007

S.W.A.K.!


I'm a sucker for a good movie love scene -- not the gratuitous all out s*x scene, no I mean the real deal love scene where it's all about the kiss.

Give me a good romantic comedy -- heck, a halfway decent romantic comedy -- and a coke and I am a happy woman. Throw in a box of snow caps and my elation knows no bounds!

As much as I love the romantic comedy, though, very few love scenes/kisses stack up to my all time favorite movie kiss. And you'll never guess the movie. Nope, that's not it. Uh, uh not that movie either. Give up? My all time favorite movie kiss is from It's A Wonderful Life. I'll give you a moment to sort out your confusion and go through the annals of your movie trivia memory.

Okay, okay, so it's not exactly a romantic comedy, but it's undercurrents are all about love. George Bailey puts everyone else above himself time and time again. He takes a job he hates at the Building and Loan when his father dies and old man Potter tries to shut it down. When the stock market crashes, he gives his honeymoon money to help out his customers when panic spreads across town. And the list goes on. Sure he has his selfish moments and personal tragedies, but that's what makes him so human.

So why is my #1 favorite love scene/movie kiss in this movie? Well, it's those few moments, about an hour into the movie (give or take, depending on commercial interruption) where George finds himself at Mary's house and on the phone with an old school chum (how often do yo get to use a word like "chum" nowadays?!). He and Mary are sharing the phone receiver, trying to pay attention to what his friend is saying, but completely distracted by the nearness of the other. Very few words are spoken, but they aren't really needed because you can see each emotion clearly in their eyes and demeanor. Their attraction is high, their chemistry is heated and the tension is roiling. Just at the height of all these intense emotions, in spite of himself George plants a kiss on Mary. And then another. And then another. Oh, they aren't pretty kisses, no. But they are kisses to remember. The urgent kisses speak of love and frustration and love and regret and just good ol' fashioned love. I get goose bumps each time I watch it.

Next time you watch the movie be sure to pay attention to this few moments of cinematic history. It'll make you wish you were courting all over again.

The movie has other merits, to be sure. But when I think of It's A Wonderful Life, it's George and Mary's first kiss that comes to mind. Every time.

What is your favorite all time movie kiss?

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