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13 Best Breakup Movies on Netflix Right Now

March 23, 2019
11 min read

As usual, let’s ask Google the best ways of getting over a ‘breakup.’ The search results will guide you to numerous sites listing N number of ways to deal with the breakup. The advice varies from blocking him or her on all social media handles, or never get drunk alone, or maybe to start some intense workout routine. But the best advice anyone can give is to watch how our beloved characters deal with the trauma and afterlife. You may end up in tears by the end of such movies but never mind, you are just having your cathartic moment, which means a safety valve for your grief to vent out.

Watching someone going through the same ordeal as you also gives us a feeling of companionship. We can easily identify and empathize with them, which consoles our own wounded self. For those who’ve never gone through the breakup process, watching breakup movies will help to get a taste of the cherry without buying them, placing them intimately close and at a safe distance at the same time. People are splitting up ever since they invented the magical phenomenon called love. Netflix addressed this universal truth and compiled some of the best breakup movies for streaming. So, here’s the list of really good breakup movies on Netflix that are available to stream right now.

13. Her (2013)

her

Spike Jonze sets his fantasy-romance ‘Her’ somewhere in the future. The movie depicts the complex relationship formed between an introvert writer Theodore Twombly, played brilliantly by Joaquin Phoenix, Samantha, voiced by Scarlett Johansson, an artificially intelligent virtual assistant. Theodore works for a letter writing firm as a personal letter writer. He writes intimate letters for those who can’t write or don’t have time. He is very lonely and depressed.

When Theodore buys an operating system upgrade with an artificial intelligence powered personal assistant, his life changes forever. He personifies the assistant with a female voice, Samantha, and starts his long conversations with her. Slowly they develop a very intense and emotional bond. But when Samantha announces the departure of her generation of AIs, Theodore is left with a broken heart. After Samantha left, he realizes that Samantha imbued new gratitude, acceptance and openness within him. In the last scene, we see Theodore reuniting with his estranged real-life lover.

12. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

Being an all-time cult favorite of those who’ve lost their loved ones and those who’ve reunited with their soulmates, ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind‘ is a sure bet when you are in need of a breakup movie watch. Joel Barish, played by Jim Carrey, is heartbroken when he learns that his girlfriend Clementine, played by Kate Winslet, erased all his memories through a new clinical method. Equally provoked and pained, Joel decides to do the same to her, to erase all her memories with the same method. But as he passes through the process, he realizes how passionately his mind holds onto Clementine’s memories when they are wiped off. He realizes their deep connection and decides to correct their mistake which seems literally irreversible.

11. Sex and the City (2008)

Sex and the City

Sarah Jessica Parker takes her beloved Carrie Bradshaw, who became a household name with the hit cable series, to the big screen with ‘Sex and the City.’ Bradshaw continues her writing spree on sex and love and is finally getting married to Mr. Big, played by Chris Noth. But when Mr. Big abandons her, the three best girlfriends reunite to patch her up. Before Carrie and Mr. Big get back together at the end of the movie, the friends help her to get through the painful ordeal of the breakup.

10. The Lobster (2015)

the lobster

Director Yorgos Lanthimos takes us for a dark comedy tour to a dystopian society. The system has implemented a weird rule for the city dwellers. According to the laws of The City, single people are sent to The Hotel in The Woods to find a romantic partner. If they can’t find a match within forty-five days, they will be transformed into various beasts and abandoned in The Woods. Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz play the lead pair who desperately strike a connection with each other to evade being transformed into a beast. Unable to find his mate after some romantic misadventures, the man escapes The Hotel and joins the rebel insurgent group, The Loners. The group believes in the complete rejection of romance. But when he falls for the mysteriously silent beauty, played by Rachel Weisz, things take a dangerous turn. The movie is a brilliant vision of our society and how it deals with love, relationships and breakup.

9. Nappily Ever After (2018)

nappily ever after

Nappily Ever After‘ is a hilarious take on the way we live out our life. Violet Jones, played by Sanaa Lathan, leads a nearly perfect life with a good job, a doctor boyfriend and the most popular hairstyle in the town. But an unexpected accident at the hair salon turns her life upside down. A mistake of the hairstylist triggers hair loss from her scalp. Eventually, Violet finds her boyfriend with another woman and in utter desperation, she shaves her head. In the next few days, she ponders on the life she had lived so far and realizes it was not what she really wanted. When she meets a philosophical barber, Violet starts putting the scattered pieces together and ‘Nappily Ever After’ ends on a positive note.

8. Blue Valentine (2010)

blue valentine

‘Blue Valentine’ is a dramatic take on love and relationships in American society through the lives of David and Cindy. The movie presents the couple’s lives in two time-frames, juxtaposing events of love and passion when they first met as young people and dislikes and dissatisfaction after spending a few years together. Cindy has grown up into an ambitious and wild woman who wants to chase her dreams, while David remains the same person when they first met. This leads to disenchantment and discord between them. For Cindy, David is a man who lacks ambition and for David, Cindy is a woman who is absorbed by her own achievements. ‘Blue Valentine‘ becomes a sharp note on the contemporary ways of loving and living together and the stature of emotions in a highly self-absorbed society.

7. Irreplaceable You (2018)

Irreplaceable You (2018)

‘Irreplaceable You’ is a heart-breaking tale of love, loss, absence, and farewells. When the friendship between Abbie, played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Sam, played by Michiel Huisman, since childhood culminates in their engagement, the movie stats with a positive vibe. But things take a devastating turn when Abbie is diagnosed with a terminal illness. With her timeline on earth marked short, Abbie begins searching for a new companion for Sam after she leaves.

The search takes her to different people and humorous situations, which create a deep impact on her take on the illness. She meets Myron, played by Christopher Walken, Kate, played by Kate McKinnon and Mitch, played by Steve Coogan, during her search and makes friends with them. One thing that connects them all is that they are dying and it makes them very passionate about life’s remaining precious moments on earth. Before leaving her beloved and others, Abbie learns how to say goodbye to those we love before we die, by living the life with them to the fullest.

6. Gaga: Five Foot Two (2017)

Gaga Five Foot TwoNetflix’s original documentary ‘Gaga: Five Foot Two’ takes us to the ‘behind the scenes’ of Lady Gaga’s legendary musical journey. Directed by Chris Moukarbel, who is known for ‘Banksy Does New York,’ the movie narrates Lady Gaga’s life during one of the most difficult periods in her career. The director uses the cinema verite style to bring out the vulnerable real persona of the super singer. We see Gaga spending time with friends and family, recording, publicity and release activities of her 2016 album ‘Joanne,’ and grappling with her personal demons for over an eight-month period.

Gaga visibly goes through intense emotional and physical pain. As she was going through a rocky relationship with then-fiance Taylor Kinney, it affected her professional career for a while. The movie also shows Gaga as a simple person who attends a family christening, visiting her grandmother, cooking food for the family, and playing with her dogs. Gaga bounced back after the 8-month period, and the title of the movie, ‘Gaga: Five Foot Two’, stand for how the 5’2 singer managed to win over her personal demons and established as a global fan base with her music.

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5. When We First Met (2018)

when we first met

When We First Met,’ is a time travel odyssey of love and mistakes that repeat with the time wheel. When Noah, played by Adam Devine, gets an opportunity to open up his undisclosed love to his dream girl, Avery, played Alexandra Daddario, things go awfully awry. In a romantic night, she simply treats him as a friend. Noah searches for the reason behind his tragic rejection at that night for the next three years but in vain. Then, a phone booth facilitates unexpected time-travel for him. Now, Noah can go back through time and intervene on the events of that night and alter the outcome! The movie depicts Noah’s destiny of repeating the same mistake again and again as a loop.

4. 6 Years (2015)

6-years-2‘6 Years’ chronicles the toxic relationship between Dan and Melanie, a young couple in their early 20s. Being childhood friends, their 6-year-long romance takes a blow when Dan receives an irresistible offer from a record label. Now, he must choose between a milestone in his career and forming a family with Mel. The couple then starts to realize the depth and intensity of their mutual affection. It is a painful realization for both of them when the bitter truth that their love has evolved into a mere routine. Written and directed by Hannah Fidell, ‘6 Years’ pits love against the individual existence of the lovers. In the end, the young couple chose to take their individual paths at the cost of their joint future together.

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3. The Notebook (2004)

the notebook

‘The Notebook’ is an epic tale that centers on the immortality of love. When the old man Noah Calhoun, played by James Garner, reads a notebook aloud for his female patron, played by Gena Rowlands, with Alzheimer’s, a story inside another story slowly unfolds. The faded pages of the book reveal the sweeping account of the passionate and immortal love of a young couple, played by Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams, in the backdrop of World War II. Their love is put to test when they are brutally separated during the chaos of World War 2. Even though they have taken different paths during the war years, the lovers find each other after seven years. When they feel the old flame still burning in their hearts, they decide to start their journey together again. The movie leaves us in consolation by reminding us true love wins over hostile circumstances and geographical challenges. The excitement of ‘The Notebook’ is in its emotional potential to make us feel the excruciating pain of separation before the happy ending.

2. Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

Silver-Linings-Playbook-DI

David O. Russel’s ‘Silver Linings Playbook’ stands out among typical ‘breakup and fall in love again’ movies. When Pat Solatano, played by Bradley Cooper, returns after spending a few months in a state institution, he has nothing left as his own. Everything has gone, including his house, his job and his wife. Pat has nowhere to go except his mom and dad, played by Jacki Weaver and Robert DeNiro. But Pat doesn’t want to leave things as it is. He is still optimistic about reuniting with his wife. Then he crosses paths with the mysterious beauty, Tiffany, played by Jennifer Lawrence. Tiffany has problems of her own but agrees to help Pat to reconnect with his wife. But she has plans of her own, which puts Pat in a dangerous situation. As their pact starts rolling, a strange intimacy develops between Pat and Tiffany. ‘Silver Lining Playbook‘ renders the nuances of mutual affection and the weird ways through which it guides the lovers, not to mention the excruciating pain.

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1. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)

To All the Boys I've Loved Before

If you want to watch a movie for all the crushes you have had, ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before‘ is your pick. The movie revolves around the crazy idea of documenting your thoughts about your ex-crushes. Lara Jean Song Covey does exactly that. She has written down everything she thinks about five boys, as five separate letters. But, her love life turns upside down when all the five love letters are mysteriously mailed out to the respective addresses. Based on the best selling novel by Jenny Han, the movie reminds us of the beauty and innocence in being vulnerable. ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’ will connect emotionally with anyone who has had a big crush in their life, which, is all of us!

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