Sometimes you just need a good cry. Whether it’s fluctuating hormones or a bad day getting you down; an emotional weep can make everything feel better. It’s science. Dr William Frey, a biochemist at St Paul-Ramsey Medical Center, found emotional tears carry more protein than non-emotional tears (such as from chopping an onion). His research suggests these emotional tears kickstart a healing process. What’s more, tears flush the stress hormone and other toxins from our body. With that in mind, if you’re ever feeling blue and could do with a good cry; it’s worth watching a sad film to bring on the waterworks. Here are five of our favourite tear-jerkers:
Hachi: A Dog's Tale (2009)
This heart-wrenching film is based on a real-life relationship between a man and his dog. Hachi, a faithful Akita Inu, surprises his owner at the train station when he arrives home from work one day. This becomes a daily routine, that is, until one day his owner doesn’t come back. While passers-by try to explain that Mr Wilson has passed away while out at work; Hachi waits on, loyal to the bitter end. Starring Richard Gere.
My Sister's Keeper, (2009)
Based on a book of the same name by Jodi Picoult, My Sister’s Keeper is a moving story about a young girl with leukaemia. Her younger sister is a genetic match and is requested by her parents to donate blood and organs to keep her sister alive. The film highlights the impact illness can have on the rest of the family, and the efforts we'll make to protect the ones we love.
Toy Story 3, (2010)
No matter whether you're young or old; this Disney Pixar animation will bring many a tear to your eye. While focused on children’s toys, the film tackles very adult issues, including the loss of a loved one, personal rejection, and death. It has been described online as 'a masterpiece', with an exceptional score of 99% on movie review site Rotten Tomatoes.
Jack is about a young boy with a genetic condition which causes him to age more quickly than he should. At the age of 10, he already looks like a 40-year-old and has trouble fitting in at school. As his body becomes more old and feeble (despite only being a teenager) Jack's friends and family must prepare for the thought of life without him. The film is made all the more poignant by its leading actor, the late Robin Williams.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, (2008)
If tales of the Holocaust and child mortality make you weepy; this film can't be missed. Eight-year-old Bruno's family is forced to relocate near a concentration camp when his father, an SS officer, is given a promotion. When Bruno befriends a young Jewish prisoner, he learns the truth about what German soldiers are doing. This truth becomes all-too-real when Bruno ends up in a gas chamber himself.