55 Films to Freak to

So ladies, we all know #netflixisbae.  With Valentine’s Day coming up this is the season of love, and I know all y’all cheap boys broke up with your girl just before Christmas, so you’re back in the saddle. I’m here to help you both out. This is a how-to guide to finding the perfect movies for that weighty text, “Netflix and chill?”. For those of you who live under a rock, the phenomenon became popular in 2009 on Twitter as a euphemism for sex. In recent culture, Netflix introduced their Netflix and Chill button called “The Switch” at the 2015 World Maker Fair, which turns Netflix on, switches phones to Do Not Disturb and dims the lights. In New York City, there is a Netflix and Chill themed apartment for rent on Airbnb. Frankly, this easy and inexpensive date turned hook-up fad doesn’t seem like it’s going anywhere fast. In this article I will take you into the depths of Netflix streaming and prepare a guide map to aid you in the navigation of your very own living room lay.

For your personal benefit, I will quickly explain that the following genres are NOT acceptable and why: TV shows are a COMMITMENT for COUPLES, you better be prepared to keep this person around for weeks if not months. Because Netflix and Chilling usually takes place on a first date, Anime is too kinky. Children and Family films are just not okay. Comedies are mood killers; can you imagine listening to Mr. Burgundy blaming the pleats while trying to romance your girl? And on the other hand, documentaries will put her to sleep. Lastly, Faith and Spirituality? …Absolutely not. However, notes to Gay & Lesbian films, Musicals, and Cult movies…. for these you just have to know your date. Guys, I’m assuming you don’t know much past her Tinder profile, so for the sake of time (and also for the sake of me not having to list him or her every time I use a pronoun to be politically correct, for I am not so familiar with Grindr), we’re omitting these categories. Thank you for your understanding.

The next topics we need to address are the criteria for each genre. This is a delicate issue; you can’t just go willy-nilly picking movies out of left field. I just have to make sure you don’t say, “Okay Cori, you said Classic? Pumping Iron is a Classic” ‘cause just, no. A safe way to pick a film under time constrains is basically anything with Bradley Cooper, Leonardo DiCaprio, Will Smith, or Johnny Depp.  It has to have hot actors. If the guy isn’t sexy, then it should be a hot girl your date can relate to. Make her feel all beautiful, after all it took her two hours to shave for this. Remember, the film has to be long enough for the twenty minutes of pretending to watch and still time before it just shuts off or plays something weird from your playlist which might wake your girl up to the fact that it is Valentine’s Day but she’s not so sad as to sleep with your sorry butt. Finally, stay away from anything socially or politically offensive in any way, and last but not least: no war or gore.

The Great Gatsby - Image: Warner Bros.

The Great Gatsby – Image: Warner Bros.

Again, not that I’m strictly talking to the men here, but they tend to need more help in this instance. For the fellas, the first category of films that are a safe bet for your Netflix and Chill night is of course, Action. Playing on the fact that ladies sometimes tend to get bored and could care less than actually watch. Gentlemen, I suggest watching one you’ve already seen so that you don’t get too engulfed, keep your eye on the prize. Streaming now on Netflix you’ve got your sexy men movies (remember we said the actors have to exude some sex appeal, none of that Jason Segel dad bod nonsense, it’s sexy time), Denzel Washington in Training Day, Will Smith in Bad Boys II, Men in Black II and Johnny Depp in Pirates of the Caribbean (remember as noted above anything with Will, Leo, Depp or Bradley Cooper will work just fine). Another way you could get the ladies in the mood is by showing her a film with a kick-ass female lead, in which case what could be better than Charlie’s Angels?

Much like action films, you can have an easy bet in the Classics genre. A quick pick is sticking to any film with Marilyn Monroe (Monkey Business, How to Marry a Millionaire) or Audrey Hepburn (Charade, Roman Holiday). These films are still feature length, none too exciting and just romantic/artistic enough to get the mood going. Women (and men) tend to be wild about Hepburn and Monroe these days; I mean…they have their own decorative sections in Target. Although, there are plenty of people who have never watched their movies. Choosing a classic film will give you a little prestige in a girl’s eyes, and make her want to drop those panties, guaranteed. Some other titles to explore include the original The Great Gatsby (which we all saw in high school English), and An Affair to Remember where two who are already engaged to others fall in love on an ocean liner (very sweet).

Similar to the Classics, you want to impress a girl and turn her on, right? Consider the International genre. Go with the love languages: French, Spanish and Italian. This segues into fun topics of conversation playing on what language you or she took in school. Do not, I repeat do not bring up taking a language if you can’t rattle off at least one coherent phrase for her that isn’t perverted or crude; this is Valentine’s Day sex, we aren’t playing around here. I can only do so much, play to your strengths. Every girl wants a guy who can whisper sexy nothings to her in another language, and vice versa ladies, I can’t think of a guy I’ve met that wouldn’t be turned on by a little bilingual tongue (pun intended). For my friendly with benefits French, go with Ridicule. This period film is based on a Lord playing games of wit to get his way at French Court in Versailles. Ciao to my Italian lovers, you should try out Cinema Paradiso, following a filmmaker remembering his days falling in love with the cinema as a child. Then, for my steamy Spanish speakers, I would start with Sex and Lucía containing an isolated island, romantic novelist and sexy Paz Vega. The subtitles will get boring and when things escalate these languages will act comparable to a Marvin Gaye album. You’re welcome.

Speaking of romance, if you can pull it off, that is an inexplicably perfect genre to get it on to, or get-it-in to if you’re living in the Jersey Shore.  The Romance genre will have you both feeling some type of way but execution is key, things can get kitschy if you aren’t careful. Netflix breaks it down into sub-genres including Romantic Drama, Quirky Romance, Rom-coms, and Steamy Dramas. The latter of which you should stay far away from unless you want to look like a raging douchebag. Obviously, the Rom-com is the best way to rock the Romance genre.  Now streaming on Netflix you can choose from movies with the hunky guys like Will Smith in Hitch, Bradley Cooper in Silver Linings Playbook, Johnny Depp in Chocolat, and Orlando Bloom in Elizabethtown. Also, you can and should go with the beautiful babes in films like Along Came Polly with Jennifer Aniston, and The Wedding Date with Debra Messing. You could even try to pull off the hopelessly romantic period pieces such as Kate & Leopold, or Shakespeare in Love. But for you awesome nostalgic 80s and 90s babies, bring it back with Can’t Buy Me Love, or one of my personal favorites, Clueless.

Clueless - Image: Paramount Pictures

Clueless – Image: Paramount Pictures

Actually knowing your date weighs heavily on the next few categories. For example, it’s not safe to throw on a music-based film such as Across the Universe, Marley, or Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train a Comin’ if your date doesn’t partake in herbal refreshments. It’s also not safe to spark up, I mean start up, a scary film if it’s going to make your girl pee her pants or be terrified of driving home. Therefore, these genres are going to require treading carefully.

If your name is Cori Heyman, you love Horror films and can’t think of anything more exciting than watching one in the crook of a dreamy guy’s arms. Those girls are out there, and for these gems I recommend an awesome selection of Horror films to choose from. Rhyming tip: just keep it easy or things can get queasy… this category is an amendment to my criteria of no gore. Luckily, there’s no limit to how you can play this one, guys. You’ve got your B movies: Sharknado (shout out to my Brooklyn boys), Cabin Fever, and Zombeavers (almost made it to my Top Ten Horror Films of 2015).  Then you have the Classics like The Shining, seven different Children of the Corn, and Halloween 6. You could go with Slashers like House of Wax or Nightmare on Elm Street or newer releases like The Babadook or Oculus. I would even allow for Scary Movie 3, the possibilities are endless. Just make sure you mute that junk when things start getting weird, no one wants to hear blood curdling screams while the chilling portion of the night ensues.

Now boys, if you are the ballsiest of guy, you can attempt the ever so tender (or should I say Tinder?) Drama genre. Please handle with care; this is not for the faint of heart. This genre involves some pre-date consulting. Yes, I mean let her pick. You have to avoid any touchy subjects that will dredge up a sob fest from her past because literally ain’t nobody got time. There are some perfect films in these sub-genres: Bio drama – Leonardo DiCaprio and all his Howard Hughes perfection in The Aviator and Johnny Depp in his heartfelt portrayal of J. M. Barrie in Finding Neverland; Crime dramas – there’s Shia LaBeouf and Tom Hardy in Lawless, and Denzel Washington in Training Day. Then you have Period Pieces – Pride & Prejudice, Jane Eyre, and Great Expectations. You’ll find Showbiz Dramas– Flashdance, Sports – A League of Their Own, Radio, and Hardball. Finally, the Tearjerkers and if you can pull this off I tip my hat to you – Hachi: A Dog’s Tale, Good Will Hunting, and Forrest Gump. Again, take heed, stay away from courtroom dramas, political dramas, and social issue dramas unless you want to get into a fight and have her storm out carrying that $7 bottle of wine you got her at the grocery store on your way home from work and eating those tacos you shouldn’t have had before a date, you AMATEUR.

Be sure to hide the recently watched category unless you want all of your secrets laid out on the table. Alas, I can only give you guidance. But there you have it, friends. Those are 55 films to freak to. On this Valentine’s Day weekend I wish you the very happiest of hunting and a successful night budding from that fateful “Netflix and chill?” text. May the odds be ever in your favor.