Before you think it, no, The Notebook is not on this list. It was a good movie, but I felt nothing at the end of that movie. Why? I have no idea. Now that that's out of the way, let's get to the reason why we're here and why I'm writing this article.
I wouldn't consider myself a crier, but the movies on this list were put together so well that I couldn't help but shed a tear at least once. To me, that's when I know I'm watching a great film. The suspension of belief caused by a script and actor's portrayal creates the thin line between the audience being inside of someone's story for an hour and a half plus or merely a pair of eyes reddening from the screen in front of them and the awareness of where they are in reality. The following films were able to create that suspension for me to the point that I really cared for these characters and fell in love with them enough to make my eyes leak. Let's begin.
Disclaimer: If you haven't seen some of these movies, there are spoilers ahead or at least hints at spoilers.
Toy Story 3
If you didn't cry at the end of this I have to question whether or not you are a monster. Toy Story the original movie released in theaters in 1995. (It's hard to believe it was that long ago.) As a person who was eight when the first movie came out, this series was an important part of my childhood cinema mind-library. Nothing could have prepared me for the ending of part three to this series. I remember being on a date and doing everything possible to not show the tears leaving the holes in my face. For your enjoyment and emotional breakdown, relive the ending below.
I first saw this movie at a free pre-screening and didn't know what to expect. It turned out to be one of my favorite movies of all time. I think it hit me hardest because of the relationship between him and his father. It reminded me more of my own father/son relationship with my dad. Every aspect of this movie is great though and it doesn't follow the normal tropes of a romcom. A certain point near the end between the actors Domhnall Gleeson and Bill Nighy had tears finding their way out of my face. I'd rather not post a video of this movie scene and let you watch the movie in its entirety for yourself.
This movie's brilliance was lost on me when I saw it as a child. As an adult, this movie moved me in so many ways. One of those ways of course was causing me to cry when he stood in front of Jenny's grave at the end. Let's be honest, if you give Tom Hanks a role he's going to kill it. He always does. Besides the tears, this movie is incredibly quotable.
Theory of Everything
Easily one of my favorite films, Theory of Everything tells the true(possibly somewhat embellished) story of Stephen Hawking. I remember watching this movie with headphones on while my then girlfriend laid on the couch. Most of the films on this list caused me to cry toward the end of the film, but this particular movie had about 3-4 of these moments that just got to me in strongest of ways. I was constantly trying to hide my tears as I watched this beautiful movie unfold.
Eddie Redmayne did such a remarkable job that I can't imagine anyone else playing this part, though the BBC version with Benedict Cumberbatch is a pretty close second. If you haven't seen this film, you must. I hate using the word "feels", but it hit me in everyone of the ones I own.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
This movie had a great message towards the end and was an all around great story with characters you wanted to root for. The story has somewhat of a twist and hit me right in my eyeball face pockets creating salt lava that I tried my best to hold back. I had never really recognized Logan Lerman as the fantastic actor he really is. Emma Watson, Ezra Miller, and the rest of the cast were also great and really pulled me into their individual stories of internal sadness. This movie is perfect for those melancholy-type nights where you want to contemplate life, your past and future.