March Sadness



After roughly 100,000 tearful votes cast, 63 tearful exits, and an untold amount of actual tears (I’m guessing zero), congratulations to the first-ever March Sadness champion, SCHINDLER’S LIST:

The upstart My Girl posted an impressive showing in the Final matchup, particularly when its vote total very suspiciously jumped by about 500 votes over the weekend, meaning that either 1) It got linked on some My Girl fansite (any of those still hanging around?) or 2) A rogue voter or two kept refreshing the page and revoting. While neither of these scenarios is particularly fair, they are both particularly hilarious.

Thanks to everyone who voted, argued, linked and commented. It’s been a long process, but in the end, we all learned something we absolutely never could have predicted: The Holocaust was really, really sad.

The FINAL MARCH SADNESS BRACKET is after the jump:

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This is it — we started with 64 movies, and after five rounds of tearful exits, we’re down to just two…


Which Is Sadder: My Girl or Schindler’s List?survey software

I didn’t have a specific goal in mind when I started this tournament, other than to start some pointlessly amusing debates and to enjoy the OCD-pleasure of brackets and ranking things, but it’s been a blast, and I really can’t think of a more perfectly fitting way to end it than to debate the sadness merits of MY GIRL versus SCHINDLER’S LIST.

As always, debate away in the comments. We’ll crown the official Saddest Movie Ever on Monday!


MARCH SADNESS: The Forlorn Four

We’re down to the Final Four in March Sadness! As we tearfully wave goodbye to Bambi, Brokeback Mountain, Sophie’s Choice, and Up, we also tearfully congratulate our finalists Old Yeller, My Girl, Hotel Rwanda, and Schindler’s List.

Because of the bracket setup, we’re left with two very amusingly different matchups:

So which two movies will be advancing to the March Sadness Final??

Vote for the FINAL FOUR After the Jump:

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MARCH SADNESS: The Elite Eight (Of Tears)

It’s Round 4 of March Sadness, and we’re down to just EIGHT MOVIES, with some sad-prises and other tragic favorites tear-ing through the competition (like, tears from your eyes. It’s an audio joke. I’ll record a .wav of me saying it and embed that.)

As we wave goodbye to Charlotte’s Web, Philadelphia, E.T., The Lion King, Boys Don’t Cry, Beaches, Precious, and Toy Story 3, here’s the updated bracket:

Voting commences after the jump — as always, the only criteria is “Which movie is sadder?”, not “which movie is better.” I’ll also again point out that we’re only voting on the specific movies, not the real-life tragedies within the movies (only inasmuch as it informs the film). Hopefully this causes your brain to be slightly less broken when deciding whether Up was sadder than Hotel Rwanda, a thing I’m sure we’ve all considered many times before.


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It’s Round 3 of March Sadness! We’re down to just 16 of the saddest movies ever, and the matchups are getting even more tragically difficult (click the bracket below to enlarge):

Round 2 saw the tearful defeat of another 16 truly tragic sad-tenders, including several animated tear-juggernauts (The Land Before Time, Dumbo, The Fox & The Hound, and WALL-E), some Round 1 dominators that came up short (Forrest Gump, Life Is Beautiful, The Killing Fields, and Steel Magnolias), and two films that the Sad Movies version of Dick Vitale pegged as Final Four contenders (Requiem For A Dream and Atonement).

Schindler’s List and Brokeback Mountain each won their matchups handily by respective 77% and 76% margins, but the biggest runaway in Round 2 was My Girl’s absolute sademolition of The Reader by an 83.8% margin, the third biggest blowout of the tournament thusfar. The narrowest Round 2 victories belonged to Toy Story 3, Sophie’s Choice, and Beaches, each of which won their considerably tough matchups with just 53% of the vote.

Voting for Round 3 commences after the jump — remember, the only criteria is “Which movie is sadder?”, not “which movie is better.” I’ll also again point out that we’re only voting on the specific movies, not the real-life tragedies within the movies (only inasmuch as it informs the film) — a vote against “Philadelphia” doesn’t mean you think AIDS isn’t sad (unless you do really think that, in which case, like, whatevs man!!!! That didn’t come out as harshly as I’d hoped.) The matchups are tougher than ever, so vote away and leave your arguments of sadness in the comments.


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MARCH SADNESS ROUND 2: The Tragic Thirty-Two

Round 1 of March Sadness is complete, and with more than 50,000 votes cast and almost as many “how could you put Sad Movie X against Also Sad Movie Y you f***ing monster!!!” complaints, the March Sadness Bracket now looks like this (click to enlarge):

Schindler’s List and Bambi were the biggest winners (interesting sentence to type), running away with 87.8% and 85.8% of the vote respectively, while the tightest contests saw The Wrestler out-grapping The Iron Giant by 51.83%, Dumbo edging Edward Scissorhands by an earlobe (51.6%), and in the round’s closest match, Toy Story 3 out-innocence-losting Titanic by a tight 50.88% majority.

We waved goodbye to some not-sad-enough classics in Round 1 like Casablanca and It’s A Wonderful Life, some unbearably sad but underrepresented films like Dancer in the Dark and The House Of Sand And Fog, and some supersad films stuck in tragically unfortunate matchups like Terms of Endearment and American History X. Not a single Disney movie lost in Round 1 though — it’ll be interesting to see what happens when the Disney tear-jerkers begin to collide with the real-world semi-nonfiction ultratragedies.

It’s time to move on to Round 2 — Once again remember, the voting criteria is “Which movie is sadder,” not “Which movie is better”. Also remember that we’re voting on these specific films, not necessarily on the tragedies contained within them (only inasmuch as they inform the movies); voting against Philadelphia or Hotel Rwanda doesn’t mean you’re disregarding the real-life horrors the films represent. Were this not the case, for example, the movie Pearl Harbor would be on this list but it isn’t because no one cried at the movie Pearl Harbor, at least not for intentional reasons.

The sadness is about to get a whole lot sadder…

Voting For ROUND TWO Commences After The Jump:

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MARCH SADNESS DAY 2: The 64 Saddest Movies Ever Battle It Out

It’s Day 2 of March Sadness, the tournament of 64 sad films to determine once and for all (in a subjective, totally interpretable manner) which is the saddest movie of all time.

Voting for Brackets C & D is now open, after the jump. Once again, here’s the full bracket:

You can still vote for Brackets A & B from yesterday – some of the matchups are still reasonably close (*COUGH* *COUGH* Dancer In The Dark is really effing sad), but the voting for all of Round 1 will conclude tomorrow morning so we can move on to Round 2 for the weekend.

Remember, the only criteria is “Which Movie Is Sadder?”, not “Which Movie Is Better” – how you determine “sadder,” though, is up to you. Also, if you’re not familiar with either movie in a particular matchup or don’t feel sad-strongly towards one option or the other, you don’t have to vote in all the matchups.

So once again, vote, get sad, spread the sadness around, and argue over sadness in the comments. Misery loves a crowd.

Voting For ROUND ONE Continues After the Jump:

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MARCH SADNESS: The 64 Saddest Movies Ever Battle It Out

It’s the third week of March, and we all know what that means: It’s time for a forced online pop-culture version of March Madness! This year, we’ve collected a bracket of the 64 saddest movies of all-time for March Sadness to determine once and for all which is the saddest film ever made, based on your subjective votes and subsequent amusingly argumentative comments.

You can begin voting for Round 1 after the jump. [UPDATE: Voting for the rest of Round One is now open]

Here’s the Full March Sadness Bracket (click to enlarge):

Remember, the only question is “Which Movie Is Sadder?”, not “Which Movie Is Better” – if we cared about that, we’d be doing March Betterthan…dness. How you determine which movie is “Sadder” is up to you — tear-jerking moments, overall crushing feeling, personal story about the first time you saw it – everything’s open to sadterpretation.

We’ve attempted to provide as comprehensive a list as possible, though obviously some notable films had to be left out (feel free to complain about omissions in the comments – the final cuts were, to say the least, very sad). The cross-section of films is slightly tilted towards more recent movies, mostly for familiarity’s sake; we could’ve included some 20 Bergman films, but they all would’ve been voted off against more popularly-known movies. The movies have been very loosely seeded based on the general consensus and notoriety of their sadness; we all have our personal quirks (I cried during Monster Squad when Frankenstein got sucked into the tornado), but we hope this 64 represents a more universally-acknowledged-as-sad grouping, and we’ll leave the specifics (sadpecifics?) up to you. So vote, comment, and be…the opposite of merry!

The Voting For ROUND ONE Begins After the Jump:

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