We all enjoy a good comfortable re-watch of a film when we are in need of a good relax. In such anxious times the security of an already known, enjoyable plot seems more deserved now than ever. Here are a few of our writers favourite comfort films.
Wallace and Gromit: A Close Shave (1995)
Aardman Animations’ classic hit film A Close Shave has always been a film that’s been dear to my heart as it never fails to make me laugh and cry; making it a clear comfort film. There’s nothing better than watching the fantastic bond Nick Park and the Aardman team have created over time between the characters of Wallace and his mute but incredibly intelligent dog Gromit to make you feel a sense of comfort and happiness.
The film is one of my ultimate favourites, as it battles with your emotions throughout its 30-minute runtime. It is also the incredible moment in British cinematic in which the one and only Shaun the Sheep was introduced to our screens, fuelling a host of spin-offs over the subsequent years such as television shows and features films following the antics of the wild sheep.
If you’re ever feeling down, you can guarantee that watching some crazy contraptions being built with a cute dog, his stupid owner and a sweet sheep will cheer you up straight away (or at least help)!
Animated films are perhaps a staple of lists of comfort films, and for good reason! They bring back memories of a childhood where anything was possible, and the magic was real. Brave, released in 2012, is my go-to comfort film.
It’s also refreshing for a Disney film – and a film featuring one of the princesses to feature both parents alive for the entire narrative; it brings a new dynamic not seen in older films from the studio, and it flicks between the comedy and serious on a dime that is important to the character development of all of them. The strong focus on bagpipes in its soundtrack as well as the gorgeous sweeping shots of the landscape, I always find my breath taken away in awe. I’ve never visited Scotland, but damn does this fill make me want to go.
Plus, Billy Connolly as Merida’s father King Fergus is a barrel of laughs in any scene he’s in.
Merida was relatable to me as a young girl who wanted nothing more than to spend days away from responsibility and go do some archery, but it’s full of lessons that we must learn and sometimes be reminded of in a somewhat humorous fashion. Being able to rewatch the film as I (arguably) grow up helps me to keep that magic alive; Brave cuts right back to the fourteen-year-old me and keeps that little bit of rebellion going.
Kung Fu Panda (2008)
To be comforted by a film is to emerge from the credits happier and more relaxed than before you turned it on. Kung fu Panda is as cuddly as its protagonist, a Hollywood film filled with rich eastern philosophies to get you through the day. It would be all too easy to ramble on about how Tai Lun’s prison escape is the greatest animation action scene, how the rope bridge fight is impeccably choreographed and how the film contains the best use of slow-motion (yeah, chew on that Snyder). And whilst these aspects are a joy to watch, the film’s meanings ultimately prevail.
Po the panda is a big fat super fan. Clumsy and incapable of trying, he gradually overcomes what is thrown at him by finding his own unique solutions. In the end, the film’s reveal that the Dragon Scroll’s recipe to success is already inside the person (and that there is no special ingredient) is a heart-warming message for everyone. Throw in all the quotable poetry of Oogway’s advice, a critique of celebrity-heroes and a superb master-apprentice relationship and you get a morale boosting doozy of a film. Skadoosh.