The best sad romantic movies can make you feel alive. Turn on the right heart-wrenching tale about a teen with cancer falling in love with her bad-boy classmate—you know the one—and you’ll become a weepy mess who’s barely able to function. And it feels great.
While it may seem counterintuitive to intentionally seek out the saddest movies of all time, a good cry can be extremely cleansing and freeing. When you get those pent-up emotions out, it’s easier to move on to more positive feelings.
True story: Glamour contributor Christopher Rosa spent over $100 seeing Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s A Star Is Born in theaters, citing the tear-inducing story of love and loss as his form of self-care. “The film became more than a form of catharsis but actual rejuvenation,” he wrote at the time, “the kind people typically receive from exercise, face masks, or a long soak in the tub.”
Not all love stories have happy endings. And that’s real life! If you’re ready, here are the 31 of the best sad romantic movies that will make you cry.