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beauty is pop culture // sex rules the world 

  • Ennie Fakoya.

The films to fall in love and out-of-love to, this Valentine's Day.

Updated: Feb 12


Our curated list of Valentine's Day movies about love that will make you yearn for it.


Valentine's Day is fast approaching, and the list of things you could get your partner is never-ending. From vials of blood to various vibrators, there’s no limit to what love can buy. But what’s more is that for those of us in blossoming relationships with fictional people, there are plenty of films for us to live vicariously through, from soul-crushing love to sweet but realistic romantic comedies. For the big "VD", we’ve curated some of the best films from around the world for your viewing pleasure:



Photo credit; “In The Mood for Love.” Dir. Wong Kar Wai.


IN THE MOOD OF LOVE (2000)

This film is considered Wong Kar Wai’s magnum opus, and that’s for you to decide, but the impact it had on films in this genre that follow speaks for itself. 1962, and Chow Mo-Wan, a lonely journalist falls in love with an enigmatic and alluring woman, Su Li-Zhen whose husband is just as preoccupied with work as his own. They soon find out that their partners are cheating on them, and end up falling in love, but it can’t be that easy, can it?



Photo Credit: “Love Jones.” Dir. Theodore Witcher

LOVE JONES (1997)

A love story between two aspiring black creatives, Darius and Nina, who have a chance meeting at a Chicago club. Their romance is cut short, however, by Nina's decision to move to New York and rekindle her relationship with her ex fiancé Marvin, which as you can imagine, doesn’t go down well with Darius. Did I forget to mention that Darius and Nina are played by Lauren Tate and Nia Long?



Photo credit: “The Handmaiden” Dir. Park Chan Wook.

THE HANDMAIDEN (2016)

Forbidden love and queer women - The Handmaiden is the story of lesbian love under Japan’s colonial rule in the 1930s Korea - does it ever get better than that? Spoiler, it does. The film follows Sook-Hee, a thief preparing to move away from her home and move into the estate of a Japanese heiress, Lady Hideko, who she, of course, falls in love with. Visually stunning and a little bizarre, Park Chan Wook presents a love story that falls under a unique category of Korean cinema.


Photo Credit: “The Red Turtle” Dir. Michaël Dudok de Wit

THE RED TURTLE (2016)

A film can at times tell you too much about the love between two characters. The Red Turtle is an animated silent movie that speaks through colour and pure intimacy. The story follows a man stranded on an island and a red turtle that soon becomes the most cherished part of his life. The French feature is co-produced by Studio Ghibli, which should already tell you everything you need to know.



Photo credit: “Ram Leela” Dir. Sanjay Leela Bhansali

Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela (2013)

One can’t talk about love without addressing the magic Bollywood films. One of my personal favourites, Ram Leela, is a Romeo and Juliet retelling, but with infinite amounts more drama. It follows Rajadi and Sanera, at the center of a war that’s been between their families for 500 years. The love aspect is beyond forbidden, but the sacrifice they make out of love for each other proves to be stronger than whatever - and whoever - tries to keep them apart. Like most of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s films, the visuals are unimaginable. It takes the story out of our world and into another, and creates a love powerful enough for the main characters to get married outside of the screens.






Are you passionate about exploring the intricate worlds of beauty, sex, fashion, wellness and culture ? Do you belong to a marginalised community and have unique perspectives and stories to share? If so, Nightstand Service is eagerly seeking contributing writers like you! Get in touch: info@nightstandservice.com

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