Your favorite movie...with a twist!

So there I was pondering my favorite movies when I came to the startling realization that every single one of them features somebody being threatened, maimed, or even brought to death outright. Even the comedies and Disney films! Now don’t get me wrong: I love me some depravity (obviously), but just as a simple exercise:

What is your favorite wholesome (read: not porn) flick that features neither death, disease, nor violence?

Just off the top of my head, Napoleon Dynamite; Nobody’s Fool; Tampopo; and Babette’s Feast.

I wonder if 2001 counts…

Nope, not only does Hall die, he is murdered (albeit in self defense). And the process of watching him slowly pass away is indeed tragic.

Does it count if there is a death, but it happens prior to the beginning of the film?

The Way

Man. That’s like asking for good food that has no sugar, salt, or texture to it.

That said, since getting Netflix Watch Instantly, on days when I come home from work with my brain destroyed and even sitcoms seem too taxing, we’ve watched documentaries.

Although a sheep here and there get killed by a bear, Sweetgrass is so beautifully shot it’s mesmerizing. Far cheesier but also surprisingly enjoyable is Babies, which shows four babies in different parts of the world and how they live.

And it’s no longer on there but The Cruise, which is a portrait of eccentric New York tour bus guide ‘Speed’ Levitch is violence free although there are some choice swears (just like Sweetgrass).

Oh yeah, and all the UP series of documentaries–those are pretty awesome as well. Stop Making Sense, Swimming to Cambodia (though violence and death are described not shown in the latter)…

As for narrative stuff, uhhhhh…Gregory’s Girl and Local Hero, both by Bill Forsyth? Annie Hall, Manhattan, Hannah & Her Sisters? Small Change or Day for Night by Truffaut?

I don’t know–I’m not sure if I’ve given good recommendations or just come off as pretentious but there you have it.

I literally cannot come up with a single movie. Damn you! I’m even cheating to try and simply come up with movies I’ve enjoyed that don’t feature violence, death or disease.

Annie Hall, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, does Shame count? Does Royal Tennenbaums count? Plenty of dance movies.

Hall? Do you mean Poole? And if so, you need to read 3001. ;)

Though it’s stretching the question, the best movie that transcends all genres without bowing to any is Groundhog Day. Just like the arc of Phil Conners, the movie starts out ornery, moves to angry, then to dramatic, then to romantic, all while keeping an ironic eye on the proceedings. There’s death in some iterations but I don’t really think that disqualifies it.

I’m pretty sure Phil takes a bath with a toaster, or something… which is pretty dark.

Yes, he does. Also, as we discussed some years before, I hated the character of Phil Connors and affirmatively wanted him to die. So for me, this movie did involve death as a theme.

From the same era, however, Ms. Doubtfire seems a good candidate.

As I said, in some iterations. Ultimately it’s a movie about celebrating life, and the suicide threads are handled gently and carefully, with both humor and brevity. It’s not Old Yeller, is the point.

So, basically, our favorite breezy comedies? Uh, I pick The Change-Up. Oh, wait, that has babies playing with blenders.


Annie Hall and Royal Tenenbaums most certainly have death in them. And Shame has a flare-up of violence.

That leaves Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which I haven’t seen. But I’m guessing someone at least gets punched in the nose at some point in that movie.


You would be correct.

I guess if you eliminate 100% all violence and death, including peaceful death and off screen death/violence, Lost In Translation is a good pick. I’ll mediate on this.

How about My Dinner With Andre? Haven’t seen it, but guys talking at a table seems safe.

Mongolian Ping Pong. Russian Ark. I Can’t Think Straight. Aside from a fantasy sequence I don’t think there’s any violence in High Fidelity to speak of?

I forget if Forgetting Sarah Marshall has any violence, but alongside My Dinner With Andre, maybe Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, & Certified Copy?

Also, I don’t think Swing Time has anything remotely related to violence. :)

All About Eve