Skip to main content
Ages 13+
Under 13
A director looking through a movie camera lens

Ten Essential Movies for Understanding the Couple's Life


The conflict of love and the difficulties involved in life as a couple have been explored throughout the short history of film.

Arthur Schopenhauer once stated that it’s very difficult to create a loveless drama. The German philosopher deciphered the secret motive of all comedy, every novel and drama, in the unstoppable impulse of the will toward people multiplying. It’s an impulse capable of overcoming familial, social, and any other obstacles, to unite two people spellbound beneath the influence of love. If we try to count all the literary, dramatic, and musical works motivated by love, we only give more weight to Schopenhauer’s claim.

From its beginnings, film assumed this tradition. A new medium, it delved right into the intricacies and complications of love. Life for couples has been attentively examined by filmmakers from all times, and with approaches as opposite as those of psychological drama and comedy.

Although many films have tried, directly or indirectly, to approach the phenomenon, we can enumerate a list. This by necessity omits some invaluable works, but it can meet at least the requirement of compiling a list of those films which managed to boldly penetrate the problem, and particularly, within married life.

Suffice it to say that a review just of Ingmar Bergman’s work might alone serve this purpose, but there’s joy in variety. Below is a list in which all genres and latitudes are given some space, but with priority given to those of high cinematographic quality.

  1. Scenes from a Marriage (Ingmar Bergman)
  2. The Night (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  3. A Gentle Woman (Robert Bresson)
  4. Tristana (Luis Buñuel)
  5. Marriage Italian-Style (Vittorio de Sica)
  6. Journey to Italy (Roberto Rossellini)
  7. Bed and Board (François Truffaut)
  8. Eyes Wide Shut (Stanley Kubrick)
  9. The Lovers (Louis Malle)
  10. 1Husbands and Wives (Woody Allen)

Image: Public domain

Related Articles