Extreme Romance Tales in the Time of COVID-19

Here are ten movies with love stories that avoid all the typical romantic cliches. Love in extremis and other situations in the movies, detailed in ten chapters:


1984 (1984): Winston Smith (John Hurt) falls in platonic love with his torturer O’Brien (Richard Burton):

1984 (1984) Winston Torture 1


ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE (2013): Vampire Lovers Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston.

So basically, The Ancient One and Loki from the MCU get it on…

Only Lovers Left Alive Movie CLIP - Reunion (2014) - Tom Hiddleston Movie HD


HAROLD & MAUDE (1971): Love knows no age barrier…apparently

Harold and Maude (1/8) Movie CLIP - Harold Meets Maude (1971) HD


KISS KISS BANG BANG (2005): Platonic buds Robert Downey Jr. and Kilmer. Sweet.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang - Robert Downey Jr. & Val Kilmer


MAKING MR RIGHT (1987): PR guru Ann Magnuson falls for scientist John Malkovich’s android lookalike. Fair enough.

Making Mr. Right Official Trailer #1 - John Malkovich Movie (1987) HD


LET THE RIGHT ONE IN (2008): More tortured vampiric desire

Let The Right One In (2008) – I'm Not A Girl


SECRETARY (2002): Strict rules apply between boss James Spader and secretary Maggie Gyllenhaal:

Secretary (2002) Official Trailer - Maggie Gyllenhaal, James Spader Movie HD


MIDNIGHT COWBOY (1969): Joe Buck and Ratzo’s unlikely bromance

Midnight Cowboy Florida Fantasy


RUSHMORE (1998): Max (Jason Schwartzman) is infatuated with teacher Miss Cross (Olivia Williams)

Rushmore - Max confronting Miss Cross


HUD (1963): Lonnie (Brandon deWilde) will always end up disappointed in his admiration for wastrel uncle Hud (Paul Newman)

Hud (1963) - Melvyn Douglas

Arnell Esq

Arnell Esq

Broadcast consultant - former Director/Creator of ITV3, ITV4 in the UK, producer/writer (most recently Bob Fosse for Sky Arts in May 2019), commentator/rent-a-gob for trades, broadsheets and magazines. Also occasional lecturer (University of Westminster, London). Content provider. Accept no substitute (terms & conditions apply) 'Nullum bonum amico, nullum peius hostes'