There really is nothing like wrapping yourself up in a fluffy blanket in front of the fire place, settling down with a box of chocolates and a cup of tea and just letting yourself switch off from the world for a few hours. It is one of my greatest and simplest joys in life, and if I plan my work schedule right it’s usually something I get to treat myself to every single day.
This list is full of some of my favourite cosy films and series, pure blockbuster gold that warms my heart and makes me feel so nostalgic. You’ll notice there aren’t any Christmas films on this list – I have decided there’s so many I love that they’ll be getting an entire blog post to themselves later this year! So without further ado, my autumn watching guide (there are a lot of tear-jerkers here, you’ve been warned…)
Notting Hill: William Thacker (aka 90’s Hugh Grant, swoon) has his quiet existence turned on its head when a-list actress Anna Scott strolls into his small travel bookshop in Notting Hill. But will their drastically different lifestyles stand in the way of true love?
Groundhog Day: I know what you’re all going to say, Groundhog Day is in February. I KNOW – but the wave of nostalgia I get from this 90s classic is so immense I couldn’t not include it. When a grumpy, self-centered journalist is sent to Punxsutawney to report on the small-town Groundhog Day ceremony, he is shocked to wake up the next morning to find out he is reliving the same day over again… and again… and again…
Bridget Jones’ Diary: A firm favourite, Bridget Jones is a walking disaster. So in her thirty-second year on Earth she decides it’s finally time to take control of her life. Step one? Keeping a diary of all her ridiculous and hysterical adventures, including a new career, two dashing men fighting over her, and the accidental invention of blue soup.
Jumanji: Just to clarify, I most definitely mean the Robin Williams classic here and not the 2017 remake. This film was such a large part of my childhood and is definitely a yearly rewatch. Searching an old mansion, siblings Judy and Peter Shepherd stumble across a jungle-themed boardgame that unleashes a world of danger and adventure.
Titanic: Leonardo DiCaprio. Kate Winslet. One of the greatest tragedies of all time. Someone grab the popcorn and a box of tissues.
Coco: An immediate classic, this wonderful all-singing all-dancing extravaganza was automatically added to my list the first time I watched it. Young Miguel won’t let his family’s strict no-music rule stand in the way of his dream of becoming a world famous musician. But when he finds himself stuck in the Land of the Dead, Miguel and his new friend Hector must embark on an incredible journey to discover the truth of his family’s musical history and make it back home before dawn breaks.
The Nightmare Before Christmas: This may cause some controversy, but for me this is definitely more of a Halloween film than a cosy Christmas film and so it’s on the autumn list. When Halloweentown resident Jack Skellington stumbles across Christmastown, he gets a new lease on life releasing him from his humdrum routine of scaring people in the real world.
Forrest Gump: Not strictly an autumn film, but certainly one that I only tend to watch in the colder months tucked up in my blanket with a box of tissues. Plus, who doesn’t love a bit of Tom Hanks?! Innocent Forrest somehow finds himself in the midst of some of the most key events in modern American history across the course of his life, but all that matters to him is the difficult task of saving his childhood love Jenny from herself.
Sleepless in Seattle: another Tom Hanks classic! After the death of his wife, Sam and his son Jonah move to Seattle. Concerned for his father’s welfare, Jonah phones into a radio talk show on a mission to find his dad a new partner, sparking a national love story that thousands of people across the nation become invested in.
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: one for my fellow fantasy geeks out there, there is no time like autumn to rewatch what I personally believe is the best film trilogy of all time… I said what I said. In this truly epic adventure, Frodo and the fellowship must make the immense trek to destroy the one ring in the fires of Mount Doom where it was created and save the world from eternal darkness.
We Bought A Zoo: I personally don’t feel this film gets enough credit at all and I’m going to be bold enough to state that it is one of my top five favourite movies of all time. Based on a true story, We Bought a Zoo follows the story of Benjamin Mee who, after his wife’s untimely death, moves his two children out to a zoo in the middle of nowhere in an effort to help the family process their grief. Though closed for many years, Rosemoor Animal Park is home to a huge variety of animals. Together with Zookeeper Kelly and her team, the Mee family work to renovate the zoo and reopen it to the public.
Me Before You: Based on the incredible book by Jojo Moyes, Louisa Clark’s cheery and quirky nature is put to the test when she starts a new job caring for Will Traynor, a young banker left paralysed from a car accident several years previously. Will’s cynical outlook on life slowly but surely begins to change from spending more time with Louisa, but can she ultimately give him a reason to carry on living?
Little Women: I absolutely fell in love with the 2019 film adaptation of Little Women. In this classic coming of age drama, the March sisters are left to fend for themselves when their father leaves to fight in the civil war. They come to grow and discover who they really are under the watchful eye of their loving Matriarch, Marmee.
Sherlock: Because who doesn’t love a whodunnit? This TV adaptation of some of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s most classic stories is absolutely brilliant. Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman make a truly excellent duo as Holmes and Watson, honestly one of my favourite series to watch in front of the fire.
Gilmore Girls: We all knew this was coming, didn’t we? I only watched this for the first time this year (have no idea what rock I’ve been hiding under all these years) but I just love the constant drama that seems to follow the Gilmore family wherever they go. The most perfect autumn watching and so easy to get invested in.
Friends: Honestly don’t know what I can say about this series that the whole world doesn’t know already? It just doesn’t get old. Ever.
Downton Abbey: I know that there are a lot of people out there who think Downton won’t be for them, I was also one of those people, but I got truly obsessed with this show the first time I watched it and am actually currently rewatching it. Brimming with humour, drama, tragedy, romance, and everything in between, this series is full of twists and turns that will keep you second guessing throughout. The cast is truly epic too, with some British acting royalty bringing the eccentric characters of Downton to life.
And there you have it, my go-to autumn watch list! Whilst a lot of these choices are super cliche and there are a lot of classics on there, I hope that you’re able to discover at least one new programme or TV series from it. And if you do, I hope you absolutely adore them – please let me know how you get on in the comments or on instagram: @dearkatherineanne
In the meantime, I’ll be all tucked up and you can bet I’ll be continuing my Downton rewatch.