We’re back to continue our celebration of Love Your Bookstore Week! Today I’m spotlighting a few films that really get our love of books and the stores that hold them. Enjoy!
YOU’VE GOT MAIL (1998)
This is possibly my favorite (definitely my most quoted) movie of all time. A modern spin on THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER (1940), this is the tale of Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) and Joe Fox (Tom Hanks). Kathleen owns an indie bookstore whose existence is threatened when Joe’s giant chain Fox Books opens down the street. Although the two clash in person, unbeknownst to each other, they are online anonymous pen pals. While this is a romance of enemies becoming friends, it is also a celebration of books, from the thoughtful pans of children enraptured during story time, to such quotes as, “When you read a book as a child, it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does.” Kathleen fights hard for her bookshop not just because it’s a family business, but because helping to make that impact in a young reader’s life is her very calling.
84, CHARING CROSS ROAD (1987)
Earlier this week, I wrote about my love for Charing Cross Road in England, which features a fine array of second-hand book shops. This film, starring Anthony Hopkins and Anne Bancroft, began as a book that was based on author Helene Hoff’s actual correspondence with an antique book dealer in London named Frank Doel. Helene first contacted Frank in 1949 via letter, looking for certain books she couldn’t locate in her home city of New York. As Frank fulfilled her requests, the two struck up a correspondence about both books and their lives that would last for two decades. It’s a lovely film, but I warn you: bring kleenex.
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (1991)
How could I not? It’s the movie that sets the unreasonable standard for gifts when the Beast gives Belle a giant two-story library as part of his courtship. Belle understands the power of books and is our heroine; the brutish Gaston who can’t read a book without pictures is our villain. The giant opening number literally dedicates an entire stanza to declare how amazing books are. Yes, there’s magic and songs and a love story, but really we’re here for the books.
Have any favorites I missed? Leave a comment below!