Special Anniversary Post: Nine Wonderful Movie Husbands

Today is my 9th Wedding Anniversary. Can’t believe we’ve been married that long, I feel like we just got married a few years ago! I’ve been blessed  to marry my best friend Ivan whom I still adore him as much — if not more — as when I first met him when I was only 19. I don’t really believe in the notion of a ‘soul mate’ but maybe he is mine as we’re both from the same hometown, went to the same Jr High, but yet we found each other thousands of miles away years later in Minnesota 😀

Ivan and I in a gorgeous day in Venice

Now, I don’t mean to rant on my anniversary post, but as I was looking for a good list of great husbands in movies, I couldn’t find any. I did find some list of WORST movie husbands full of cheaters, psychopaths or wife beaters! There’s really not a lot of films depicting healthy marriages either, but you’ll be sure to find a plethora of those depicting troubled/doomed unions. Heh, I find that disheartening. But in any case, this post is my tribute to my gorgeous, loving husband who seems to only get better with age 😀

If you’ve been following this blog long enough, you might notice that I included the four husbands I included in this list from Thanksgiving 2009. I added five more movie husbands that I think any woman would be blessed to have. The movie itself may not be perfect, but the husband portrayed here certainly seems that way.

John Rolfe – The New World

The Pocahontas-inspired story actually centers on her love affair with Capt. John Smith (Colin Farrell). But it’s the last twenty minutes of the 2.5-hour movie that touched me the most. Christian Bale’s John Rolfe fell in love with the grieving young woman after losing her first love, and eventually married her. His brief scenes with her show how patient and loving he was towards her, even until the end when their love is tested. Their scenes together are definitely one I can watch over and over again. It’s a testament of that Bale can play a hopeless romantic convincingly. I wish he’d tackle this type of role more often!

Paul Child – Julie & Julia

I just love Stanley Tucci, the man can do anything. Now this is one of his underrated roles which my friend Paula guest blogged for me in this Flix Character Spotlight. This movie is definitely all about the heroine that is Julia Child. But just like the phrase ‘behind a great man, there is a good woman,’ the same can be true vice versa. Paul Child was a loving and sympathetic husband who stood by Julia even before she became famous, and even when fame beckoned, he’s still supportive of her instead of becoming jealous of it like a lot of men would.

Duke – The Notebook

I’m probably the only woman on earth who isn’t head over heels in love with The Notebook nor Ryan Gosling. I do like parts of it, and mainly the love story of the older characters. James Gardner’s Duke shows how love transcends devastating circumstances. He never gave up reading their love stories over and over again to his Alzheimer-stricken wife Allie (Gena Rowland), giving us a whole new meaning and inspiration to what ‘in sickness and in health’ marital promise is all about.

Gerry Kennedy – P.S. I Love You

Gerry Butler might be a confirmed bachelor, but he sure can play a dreamy husband, dead or alive. Hilary Swank’s Holly can be quite a pill but Gerry handle her rants and mood swings in stride and sense of humor. His love for her even transcends death as he leaves notes from the afterlife to help her move on. Plus, any husband who’s willing to do this silly but sexy strip dance absolutely deserves to be on this list.

Oh btw, I LOVE this deleted scene when Gerry booked the vacation for his wife days before he died. They did a good job making Butler look frail and sick, but even in this delicate condition he still hasn’t lost his sense of humor!


Bob Rueland – Return to Me

In this movie, David Duchovny doesn’t play the role of a husband for very long but in those brief scenes, he makes for such an adorable and supportive partner to his zoologist wife. He’s funny, charming, and sweet as can be. When he suddenly lost her, his grief was genuinely moving and heartbreaking that we all root for him to find love again. When he does, he was the epitome of a perfect boyfriend, too, which is a far cry from the womanizer role he plays in Californication.

Prince Albert – The Young Victoria

I always love a good period drama and this one is one of my favorite films about British Monarch. It takes a humble and loving man to take up the role of a queen’s husband. But Albert loves Victoria so much that it hardly matters. In fact, right from the start when they were playing chess, he understood her predicament and knew what a woman in her position would need.

Princess Victoria: You don’t recommend I find a husband to play it for me?
Prince Albert: I should find one to play it with you, not for you.

It’s a heartwarming love story and it’s clear that Victoria relies on her husband’s support and love to carry through such a heavy burden of ruling a monarchy at such a young age. In fact, he’s instrumental in helping her build her self-confidence. It seems that there’s nothing he wouldn’t do for his wife.

Michael Green – When a Man Loves a Woman

I saw this years ago and I was quite taken by Andy Garcia’s performance. The film is quite heartbreaking, as do films that deal with any kind of addiction. Now, his behavior might not always be wise as he loves her too much to put his foot down and confront her addiction, but what matters is he sticks by her. He abides by the ‘through thick and thin’ vow of his marriage that’s often forgotten by people as soon as trouble strikes. I think even if addiction is not involved, anyone can relate to this story as no marriage is ever perfect.

Walter Fane – The Painted Veil

Now if you’ve seen this film, you might initially disapprove of Walter’s decision to take his unfaithful wife Kitty to China. It seems like a punishment for her initially and there’s perhaps an element of that in Walter’s mind but he obviously loves her so much and wants their marriage to work. I reviewed this film a while back, saying that it’s rare to find a movie that tells a wonderful human drama without being too cutesy or overly romantic. I do think that love is more than a bed of roses or candlelit dinner in fact, it’s best experienced when you’d least expect it. The journey that these two go through together sends a hopeful message that nothing is beyond repair if we’re willing to take a personal reflection and seek forgiveness.

Carl Fredricksen – Pixar’s UP

I’ve featured this scene a year ago on this day for my 8th wedding anniversary, so Carl Fredricksen definitely has to be on this list. Who says animated films can’t contain a profound message, certainly Pixar films have done so and it’s filmed in such a delightful, charming way. Of course it’s not always a picture of marital bliss and sometimes it’s downright tragic. But the real beauty is how they shared every moment of sorrow, disappointment, as well as happiness together. I certainly hope Ivan and I will grow old together like Carl and Ellie 😀

Now, I’m not one to give advice but if I could give just one tip to anyone looking to get married… it’s the same as the one I said last year and the years after that: ‘Marry not just the one you love, but the one you LIKE spending tons of time together with.’ 

Thank you my darling Ivan, for putting up with my antics, mercurial moods and endless blogging hours 😀

So to help me celebrate this special day, do tell me what’s your favorite film that depicts a healthy marriage. Bonus if you could name your favorite movie husbands 😀

102 thoughts on “Special Anniversary Post: Nine Wonderful Movie Husbands

  1. Congratulations Ruth and Ivan! I’m slightly concerned that I have only seen two of the above as these are just not my kind of movies! Up was truly lovely and beautiful, but The Notebook made me cringe and think ‘no guys are like that!’. Then again as I’m getting married in July, perhaps it’s time I started brushing up on these movie husbands!

    As for depicting healthy marriages, I can’t think of any, I guess I just watch too many horrible movies. I much prefer a doomed romance like Romeo and Juliet or Titanic. Oh wait I always loved the couple from The Crow. But they both die. But at least he comes back from the dead to avenge her. That’s a great movie husband. I can’t even remember if they are married actually.

    1. Oh you’re getting married soon? Awesome! Well, hopefully you LIKE your fiancee as much as you love her 🙂 I think movies often depict couples being head over heels in love when it’s really more about the other ‘L’ word, ahah. Well doomed romance has its place and I do like those too, but I think there’s just an unhealthy imbalance of films that depict the other side of that. Ahah, never thought of The Crow as being a good husband but if you put it that way I guess he is 🙂

  2. Happiest of anniversaries, you two. And what an excellent list of movie husbands to come up with. Kudos for those in The Notebook (James Garner), Return to Me (David Duchovny), and UP (Ed Ansner).

    1. Thank you Michael! Hey it takes one to know one, I mean you’re a great husband yourself and I’m inspired by you that you’ve been married a long time, too.

  3. Ryan McNeil

    Way to go – most of my office is looking at me and wondering why I’m all misty and sniffling.

    Great post – you’ve given me some great examples to look up to as far as what a husband is supposed to be, and reminded us all that going to the movies isn’t always about escaping our own lives but giving it perspective.

    Happy Anniversary to you both – here’s to nine more!

    1. Aw… now you’re making me all verklempt. I know you’ve been married quite a while too, right? I love that you call your wife Lady Hatter 😀

      “…going to the movies isn’t always about escaping our own lives but giving it perspective.” I couldn’t have said it better, Ryan.

  4. PrairieGirl

    Congrats and here’s to many more! Very good list of great husbands ;-D. Two of my favorite movie husbands redeem themselves in the end. One is Jack Campbell (Nick Cage) in The Family Man (2000). He certainly doesn’t start out as the ideal hubby, but by the end of his fantasy “glimpse,” he sure comes close. And Rufus Sewell as Petruchio in Taming of The Shrew (ShakespeaRe-told series) starts out very quirky but ends up in wedded bliss with Kate (Shirley Henderson).

    1. Oh yeah, The Family Man is a good choice. I’m so envious of Shirley Henderson w/ the way Rufus is flirtin’ with her, especially the elevator scene! 🙂

  5. Well i think troubled relationships just provide more conflict, which is why they are used more often.

    Anyways, the only one coming to mind for me Joe WIlson from Fair Game. Even though what happens to valerie puts a strain on there marriage, they still stay together in the end. Pus i think penn is really good in the role

    1. Oh yeah I know, Hollywood and a lot of moviegoers are obsessed w/ dark stuff it seems like. I saw Fair Game and I thought it was just ok. I suppose the real life Joe Wilson is a good man, I just wasn’t wowed by Penn’s performance, I do like Naomi though.

  6. Happy anniversary Ruth! Nine years is quite a feat, congrats! You two sound like a perfect couple. 😀

    As for movies about marriage, I can’t really think of any happy movies about marriage, but recently I saw a great film called Scenes from a Marriage which depicts ten years in the life of a married couple. It’s very realistic and the acting is some of the best I’ve ever seen in any movie, but it isn’t really an upbeat film since it’s about divorce. But still, a fantastic movie.

    1. Thanks Tyler!

      I have to look up that film, sounds like a good one. It doesn’t have to be an upbeat film so long as it’s honest. I come from a broken home myself but I certainly am not bitter about the whole idea of marriage.

  7. Happy anniversary, Ruth! You guys look like a very happy couple indeed. 😀

    That is pretty disturbing, though, that there are so many lists online about abusive husbands and failed relationships, but little to the contrary. It’s a good thing you made this list to help balance it out. 🙂

    1. Thanks Eric! Yeah it’s kinda sad to how lopsided the depiction of healthy vs. destructive relationships, especially marriage. I think Hollywood just don’t think it’s ‘cool’ to make films about that 😦

  8. Rich

    Totally agree about Stanley Tucci in ‘Julie & Julia.’ I think that was the same year he did ‘The Lovely Bones,’ and that was the showier role, so he got nominated for that, but he could’ve just as easily been recognized for this as well.

    You and Ivan look ADORABLE together. Here’s to nine more years!

    1. Awww, why thank you Rich. I was hesitant to put our pic on this blog but ah well, we’re all friends right? 🙂

      Glad you agree about Tucci, I tell you I think he could’ve gotten a nod every year with all the great work he continues doing.

  9. Ted S.

    Happy anniversary to you both!

    I only saw two of the movies you listed there, of course you know I’m not much into the romance type of films but I really enjoyed The New World and Up.

    1. Hi Ted. Y’know, The Painted Veil isn’t exactly a romantic film, more of a drama. You might enjoy that one, especially if you like Naomi/Edward.

  10. Congrats, Ruth, on 9 years of marital bliss! I agree with you 100% about the “like” thing being just as important. My wife and I are coming up on our 3rd anniversary next month, and the fact that we like each other and enjoy spending time together makes it all work, despite the occasional bumps in the road.

    Have a great anniversary! And don’t forget all those great movie wives out there…two examples off the top of my head being Donna Reed as Mary Bailey in It’s a Wonderful Life and Rosemarie Dewitt as Ben Affleck’s oh-so-supportive wife in the little-seen but terrific drama The Company Men (2010).

    1. Hello Jeff, that’s nice to hear about you and your wife! It really is a blessing I don’t take for granted to have someone to share life with.

      Y’know I just might create a list of favorite movie wives. And yes, totally agree on the two you mentioned! I really like DeWitt’s performance in ‘The Company Men.’

  11. What a great read! Wonderful list and a wonderful reason to celebrate. My wife and I have been married for 17 years now! Really happy for you guys.

  12. RUTH! Happy Happy Anniversary! What a blessing! Man that is awesome! And you both look so happy in that photo in Venice! 🙂

    I must admit I’ve only seen 2 of the movies you listed with husbands (The Notebook and Up). But I do like Carl in Up.

    What a great post. Have a wonderful anniversary. Here’s to many more.

    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment during your work week, T! I really appreciate that. He..he… it’s hard not to have a wide grin when you’re in Venice 🙂

      You haven’t seen P.S. I Love You? I hope you’d give that a shot one day. Trust me, my guy friends who’ve seen it actually enjoyed it. No lie 😀

  13. Congratulations! Hope you had nice anniversary. I love your list – especially the inclusion of Bale, he was like the sweetest guy ever in The New World.

    1. Thanks Sati. I was swooning all over seeing Bale as this soft-spoken, sweet-natured man in love! I wish he’d do more roles like that instead of the dark, depressing stuff he seems so much into.

  14. bigthoughtssmallmind

    Great list overall, Ruth. Love that you included When A Man Loves A Woman and Up amongst the selections. More importantly though, Happy Anniversary!! Hope you and the hubby had a fantastic day.

  15. Aww Shucks!! Happy Anniversary you two cats!! I can’t believe it has been a year since the last post! You two look so happy in Venice… Although I didn’t recognise you without your Sun Glasses on!! HAHA

    Here is to many many more!

    1. Yeah, I guess time flies when you’re having a good time 🙂 He..he.. I was apprehensive about putting our photo up but I took a tip from the Lawlor Guidebook and add a personal touch to the post 😀

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  18. Cecilia Rusli

    Happy anniversary Ruth and Ivan!

    I like your tip on marriage anyway 🙂

    My fav movie husband would be David Thewlis as Michael Aris in The Lady. I find it very sweet to see such a supportive and patient husband like him. Plus a sharing partner who speaks the same “language”.

    1. Hi Cecil, pa kabar? Oh that is a great addition. I have not seen the film but I totally believe you he deserves to be on this list. I still need to see that movie soon!

  19. Happy Anniversary Ruth and Ivan! Wow! 9 years – huge congrats!

    Movie husbands always just make me feel insanely jealous. It’s a case of “I want!”. Duke from The Notebook is definitely one who had that reaction for me. Though, having trouble of thinking of any others at the moment. Can think of plenty of TV husbands though!

    1. Hey, you just might find a hubby like one of these, Jaina. I know a couple of my single friends just found love in the last couple of years and are getting married now. Duke is a tough act to follow indeed, that scene of him reading to his wife always bring tears to my eyes!

  20. Cecilia Rusli

    Kabar baik. What about you?

    The film is not so special but yes you need to put it on your list. Was it screened on local theaters near you?

    I was pretty surprised that few days after I saw the movie at the cinema, I read about Aung San Suu Kyi on local newspaper. Means they were actually pretty up-to-date to make it into a movie.

    1. I can’t remember if The Lady played here or not, but I’ll just rent it when it’s out. Yeah, I was reading about Suu Kyi a few months ago too, so it is indeed pretty current.

  21. Happy anniversary, Ruth. That’s a wonderful story about you and your husband. I agree with some, especially Up and PS I Love You, also Julie & Julia. Nice list! I always wanted to see the Painted Veil.

    Mike Leigh’s Another Year shows a healthy marriage of an old couple. (and that’s all I can remember now). Have a great anniversary (although maybe it’s too late when I say this)

    1. Thanks Andina! The Painted Veil is lovely, plus the China cinematography is breathtaking.

      I actually thought about Jim Broadbent in ‘Another Year’ but that film is quite boring IMO. I really wanted to like it but it’s sooo s-l-o-w, even for a fan of period dramas like me which are generally not fast-paced.

  22. ray brayne

    Leonard Whiting, Romeo in “Romeo and Juliet”. Beloved of Juliet, “The all seeing sun ne’er saw her match since first the world begun”. Soul mates, like Ruth and Ivan, though thou doest gainsay. Salute!

    1. Hi Ray, welcome to FC! Ah Romeo, dear Romeo. I think these two are taking their romantic sensibilities a little far however 😀

  23. Congrats Ruth on your anniversary it is nice to hear when people are together for so many years like Julia Roberts said in Notting Hill
    Anna Scott: “For June who loved this garden from Joseph who always sat beside her.” Some people do spend their whole lives together.
    Happy Anniversary Ruth @>–

  24. Congratulations on the anniversary and thanks for including the criminally underrated Stanley Tucci. Julie & Julia is a prime example of how he improves every film he is in.

  25. First time reading a post about movie husbands, and yeah these are all great examples too. That scene from “Up” has never failed at the very least, to make my eyes misty. Happy anniversary!!

    1. Yeah, there’s actually no articles of movie husbands other than the psychotic ones 😦 Glad you enjoyed the Carl & Ellie scene, it’s so adorable. Thanks Asrap!

  26. Happy anniversary! That’s something to celebrate. And great idea for a list! I haven’t seen PS I Love You, but I’ve been meaning to. Gotta love some Butler.

  27. First of all…sorry for this late wish…Happy 9th anniversary Ruth, may your marriage last forever and always support each other till the end 🙂

    I haven’t seen most movies you have chosen but I really agree on PS I Love you, GB’s character there is such a loving husband that can make anyone envy.

    1. Hey no such a thing as a late comment Nov 🙂 Thanks very much, hope you would find someone special in your life as well. Glad you have seen PS I love you, I know it’s not really your cup of tea. Yes, Gerry (the actor & the character) is absolutely adorable here!

        1. Yeah indeed, a rom-com with actual romance AND comedy 🙂 Did you see that deleted scene I posted above? That scene never fails to amuse me and they managed to make Gerry look cancer-stricken, and this is done around ‘300’ time when he still has his 8-pack abs!

  28. happy anniversary, Flixy to you and Ivan!
    Ooooh, you know I’m deeply in love with the relationship Rupert Friend and Millie Blunt had in YOUNG VICTORIA!

    1. Thanks Dezzy! Yes I know we both love those two and the movie is such a lovely example that good marriage/relationship does make for a compelling film!

      1. it is so rare that you see such a calm, natural and intelligent love like the two of them had on screen. Did you know that Vics loved him so much that after his death at a young age, she spent many decades wearing black and mourning him till her own death.

        1. Oh yeah, I saw Mrs. Brown where Dame Judi plays Queen Victoria. She was still mourning the death of her husband when she met Mr. Brown who helped her find joy in her life again.

  29. Happy Anniversary, Ruth! I hope you and Ivan grow old together like Carl and Ellie too 🙂 That is a great list. Paul Child is my favorite among these wonderful husbands.

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  31. Paula

    Sorry i am so behind the times…happy anniversary to you both and many many more! So glad to see one of the best movie hubbies of all time, Paul Child on your list, and thanks for linking to my article 🙂

  32. Alexia H

    Happy Anniversary!
    First, I have to get this off my chest; I can’t agree more that Stanley Tucci really can do anything, fantastic actor! Now, when it comes to a devoted husband I always think of Andy Garcia’s portrayal of Michael Green. This movie portrays the perfect picture of a loving marriage torn apart by addiction, and the complications that are inevitable. I have a friend and colleague who works with me for Dish, he is going through a similar situation and is being torn apart, it shows in every aspect of his life. I subscribe to Blockbuster @Home, so I’ve got ‘When a Man Loves a Women’ coming in the mail. I’ve invited my friend over so we can watch it together in hopes, it will bring him some peace.

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  35. kisumisuja

    People need to stop romanticizing Pocahontas. She isn’t a movie character, she was a real person and John Rolfe was quite possibly her abuser/captor considering she was kidnapped, forced to convert, and probably forced to marry him, and the Mattaponi oral history suggests that their child was possibly the result of a rape and wasn’t his. Something to think about.

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