1./ You’ve Got Mail (1998)
While the premise might be about two people who fall in love over the early days of email, the other love story is about books. Based on the 1940 movie Shop Around the Corner, Meg Ryan runs a children’s bookstore that she inherited from her mother. It is everything you could want from a bookshop - cozy and inviting, filled with fairy lights, employees who love books…it is really the ideal independent bookshop.
Meanwhile, she has no idea her email pen-pal is the director of Fox Books, the big-box store bookshop that is going to squash her little bookshop into the dust. If you haven’t seen it, don’t worry - it all works out in the end. Love and the written word prevail!
2./ Notting Hill (1999)
Hugh Grant’s character is the owner of a failing travel bookstore in bohemian enclave of Notting Hill in London. Most people stumble into his store looking for something else, until one day a famous Hollywood actress walks in…
This bookshop is the perfect work environment for Grant’s retiring and awkward personality, he is the prototypical “bookish” person. The failing finances of the store are highly indicative of how he seems to have given up on his love life and himself. While the movie doesn’t explain the fate of the bookshop at the end, we can imagine it became a roaring success!
3./ Funny Face
Fred Astaire, a fashion photographer, discovers the beautiful Audrey Hepburn working in a New York bookstore. Underneath her homely clothes, he knows there is a graceful and elegant young woman. He whisks her away to Paris to model in his photos for Mode magazine.
Whilst she enjoys the opportunity to travel abroad, Hepburn’s character is more interested in the beatnik culture and literature than dressing up in fancy clothes. She’s an intellectual! Alls well that ends well, Hepburn stays true to herself and falls in love in the most perfect wedding dress of all time…
4./ The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (2018)
Under the German occupation of the 2nd World War, a brave group of Guernsey residents meet up for a clandestine book club to discuss literature and life. Lily James, a successful but stuck author from London, travels to Guernsey for some inspiration. She is swept up by her newfound friends, who welcome her in. With so many liberties taken away, this rag-tag group make the most of what they have: friendship and literature. This movie was also an enormously popular novel, both of which are charming and heartwarming.
5./ Not Another Happy Ending (2013)
The endlessly charming Karen Gillian is a young writer struggling with paralysing writer's block. Her editor is determined to do whatever it takes to wrangle her next book out of her! The problem is, she can only write well when she's unhappy - which means he is forced to go increasingly outlandish lengths to ruin her life. Delightfully sweet.
6./ Ruby Sparks (2012)
The protagonist, Paul Dano, is also a struggling writer, but with a very different problem..he writes himself a perfect female character, only to wake up with a real flesh-and-blood version of her in his house! She is everything he could want in a in a girlfiend...so what could go wrong? Her existence in world creates more problems for him than he can write himself out of.
7./ Midnight in Paris (2011)
The premise is a writer or book-lover's dream - a midnight walk around Paris turns into a trip back in time to Paris' heyday, the roaring 20s. Owen Wilson bumps into all his literary idols - Ernest Hemingway, F.Scott Fitzgerald - as well as a mysterious woman who will change his life forever. This is a movie for anyone who believes they were born in the wrong era, and believes in the transporting power of books. It has some of the most accurate "real-person" casting, it is really uncanny.