What makes a movie sad? A doomed romance, dashed hopes, the demise of a beloved institution or way of life…and the death, of course, of a loved one, a self-sacrificing hero, of an animal with sad eyes.
Everyone has a different idea of what’s sad and what’s not, of course; like humor, it is a matter of taste and temperament. You might sob during the finale of a movie, while someone next to you falls asleep from boredom. You might laugh at the absurdity of a twist of cinematic fate, while everyone in the theater sniffles and dabs at their tear ducts.
By searching published lists of sad movies on Internet Movie Database (IMDb) and weighing in on ourselves, based on our own cinematic experiences and definitions of “sad,” 24/7 Tempo was able to put together a list of what we think can be considered the saddest films ever made.
The list includes everything from animations to outstanding fact-based movies – these are the 50 best movies based on true events.
Click here for the saddest movies of all time
To determine the saddest movies of all time, 24/7 Tempo started with over 600 movies found on user-created sad movie lists found on the Internet Movie Database (IMDb). Then, we narrowed down the list by choosing the most popular movies among amateur and professional viewers, taking into account average ratings from critics and audiences from Rotten Tomatoes and average user ratings from IMDb. We selected movies with at least 10,000 user ratings between IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes and 10 approved reviews from “Tomatometer”. Once we had that list, we put editorial discretion into play, removing films that didn’t feel emotional enough and adding those that we felt were essential.