Top Movies about Funerals
If you look at the proportion of movies about weddings compared to the proportion of movies about funerals, you’ll find that people are much more interested in watching the celebration of love rather than the celebration of death. While this isn’t really surprising (traditionally, the sad movies we love to watch focus more on the character’s journey than the aftermath of loss), it is interesting to note that funeral-oriented movies are on the rise.
Whether you’re in the mood for a funeral-related movie with humor to pick you up, or if you need something to remind you that everyone goes through the process of loss and regrowth, here’s a list of popular funeral movies we all love.
- Death at a Funeral: Both the original British version and the Chris Rock remake provide an entertaining look at the family dynamics at a funeral. More humorous than dark in tone, this one might be best watched when you aren’t facing your own recent loss.
- Four Weddings and a Funeral: Possibly the most iconic funeral movie in the world, this 1994 film featuring Hugh Grant strikes a good balance between optimism and reality.
- Love Actually: The funeral in this one is only a small part of one of the love stories, but it provides a touching reminder that every love story will eventually come to an end—and that it is possible to move on.
- The Big Chill: Older than most of the other movies on the list, this 1983 film classic is one that brings old friends together after one of their old group commits suicide. (First Wives’ Club is another one that starts out this way.)
- P.S. I Love You: Another movie about moving on after the loss of a romantic love interest, this one is a real tearjerker. The idea that you can continue sending messages of love even after you’re gone is one that appeals to many people suffering from a long-term or terminal illness.
- Elizabethtown: This smaller, indie flick ties together the themes of loss, funerals, and family finding a way to move forward again.
- Bernie: This odd, quirky film tells the tale of a funeral director with a heart of gold…and some very bizarre motivations. You should probably save this one for when you’re not in the middle of planning a funeral yourself.
- My Girl: Perhaps no movie captures loss quite like My Girl. In addition to the death of one of the main characters, the “girl” in question is the daughter of a funeral director, and has to deal with growing up and the concept of end-of-life all at the same time.
Funeral movies might not sound like a good way to spend an evening, but you might be surprised by what you find. Like all major life events, death provides a way for us to reevaluate our lives and what we want out of it—and funeral movies capture that without the pain of personal loss.