Best movies like Lucy & Desi

Comedian Amy Poehler has already shown her talents as a director with two feature films. The Recent Amazon Prime Original Lucy & Desi marks her directorial debut in documentary format. As the title suggests, the documentary chronicles the lives of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz whose work on the sitcom i love lucy turned them into one of the most iconic power couples in the film industry.

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The documentary with Aaron Sorkin’s biopic Be the Ricardos brought Ball and Arnaz fame back into popular conversation. For audiences who enjoyed Poehler’s documentary, they would also be interested in exploring more films featuring the two comedic legends as well as other stories that explore similar power couples.

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Walk the Line (2005) – Stream on Amazon Prime


June and Johnny Cash sing together in Walk the Line

Featuring one of Joaquin Phoenix’s greatest performances, walk the line is essentially a biopic of country music legend Johnny Cash. However, instead of just glorifying his life, James Mangold’s film also covers his drug addiction and toxic relationship with his wife and frequent collaborator June Cash (played by Reese Witherspoon in an Oscar-nominated performance).

The strains in the protagonists’ romance as well as their collective star power can be compared to a couple like “Lucy and Desi.” Since the two pairs had to act like the perfect couple in front of the cameras, their fame put a lot of strain on their personal lives.


Being the Ricardos (2021) – Stream on Amazon Prime


be-the-ricardos-lucy-desi

Written and directed by Aaron Sorkin, Be the Ricardos covers a week in the life of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. As they prepare for an episode of i love lucy, Ball struggles with the criticism she might receive for an unexpected connection to the Communists. If that wasn’t enough, her marriage also falls apart as she suspects Arnaz of infidelity.

RELATED: The 10 Best Quotes About Being The Ricardos

Powered by performances by Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem, Be the Ricardos adds dramatic depth to the real story that Amy Poehler’s documentary tries to tell.

Moxie (2020) – Stream on Netflix


Viviane Moxie

Moxie is a coming-of-age comedy-drama that revolves around a shy but passionate teenager who seeks to combat rampant sexism at her school. As she resorts to anonymously channeling her opinions through a zine called Moxie, she starts something of a revolution.


Written and directed by Amy Poehler, the Netflix film allows the Parks and recreation star to flaunt her dramatic prowess and storytelling abilities that she only developed with a documentary like Lucy & Desi.

The Man on the Moon (1999) – Stream on Tubi TV


Andy Kaufman sings in Man on the Moon

Man on the Moon is a semi-realistic, semi-surreal take on the life of infamous comedian Andy Kaufman, casting one of Jim Carrey’s best dramatic roles. The film covers his bizarre style of physical comedy, his wrestling career, and his mental health struggles.

Kaufman’s brand of comedy was goofy and immature, but as this biopic shows, he too had his quota of dark moments in life. Lucy & Desi shows just as the happiest couple on TV can also be rocky and tumultuous beyond the screen.


Lucy & Desi: A Home Movie (1994) – Stream on Amazon Prime


Desi Arnaz holding a camera while Lucille Ball smiles

Before Amy Poehler’s documentary, the most insightful glimpse audiences could get into the lives of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz was Lucy & Desi: an amateur movie. The documentary includes archival footage, letters and interviews with actors from i love lucy as well as the couple’s friends and family.

The narrative focuses on Ball’s origins from his coming-of-age years to his Hollywood stardom and marriage to Desi Arnaz. It also gives the stories behind some of Lucille Ball’s best TV moments. For the context it provides, this serves as the perfect companion to accompany Lucy & Desi.


A Star is Born (2018) – Stream on Apple TV


Jack and Aly walking and standing outside their tour bus in A Star Is Born

The third remake of the original, A star is born serves as a modern update on a familiar story of tragic romance. Actor-turned-director Bradley Cooper stars in the film as a washed-up alcoholic musician who discovers a promising newcomer played by Lady Gaga. As the two develop a professional and personal relationship, their ideals clash leading to a chaotic love.

While A star is bornThe case is perhaps a little extreme, Lucy & Desi shows that the two actors have had their share of clashes. Even though their creative visions were similar, their personal differences ultimately led to their divorce.

Frank & Cindy (2007) – Stream on Netflix


Cindy sitting in a bad mood while Frank plays guitar in the back

Frank and Cindy is a documentary that covers the troubled marriage of an unlucky musician and his disgruntled wife. Once famous for a single hit song, Cindy Brown was Frank Garcia’s groupie, but now they’re battling alcoholism and a midlife crisis.

RELATED: 10 Best Music Documentaries of the Last 15 Years

Captured on camera by their own son GJ Echternkamp, ​​the documentary offers a brutally raw and honest look at the facade of stardom and the grim realities behind it. This contrast is what would impress fans of Lucy & Desi.

The Long, Long Trailer (1954) – Stream on Apple TV


1950s road-comedy starring Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, this vintage classic is set in a “trailer house”. As a newlywed couple begin living in their makeshift residence, they go through several comedic misadventures in the trailer.

Lucy & Desi is sure to pique the curiosity of moviegoers to learn more about the couple’s professional work. While i love lucy is an obvious example, the two have also starred in several films with The long trailer being one of the most beloved.

Broken: The Incredible Story of Brangelina (2018) – Stream on Tubi TV


Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie sitting in a car in Broken The Incredible Story of Brangelina

When it comes to Hollywood power couples, Brangelina (Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie) often comes to mind. But as iconic as they were together, they were also enigmatic. The documentary Broken draws on exclusive interviews and behind-the-scenes anecdotes to understand the evolution of their relationship, from budding romance to eventual divorce.

RELATED: 10 Best Underrated Brad Pitt Characters

Although Lucy & Desi tends to focus on the happy phase of its titular couple, the documentary alludes to their issues which lead to a shocking split. Broken is in a similar vein with its exploration of one of showbiz’s most popular couples.

Too Many Girls (1941) – Stream on Apple TV


Lucille Ball and the cast of Too Many Girls raise their hands

Based on the musical of the same name, too many girls stars Lucille Ball as a spoiled heiress who is protected by four Ivy League college football stars posing as her bodyguards. The film is one of the first screen credits for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz (who appears in a supporting role as one of the “bodyguards”).

The importance of the musical comes from the fact that too many girls marked Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz’s first on-screen appearance together. The rest, as shown in Lucy & Desithis is Hollywood history.

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