Most romantic tragedies turn on contrived, facile melodrama, but the shattering Brokeback Mountain hurts so much because its tragedy feels so true. The movie’s lovers, a pair of cowboys who first meet in 1963 Wyoming (Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger), are kept apart by forces that you can feel: prejudice, societal pressure and above all their own misplaced shame. Romantic happiness has rarely been so tangibly out of reach. Ledger offers a crushing study of repression, while director Ang Lee (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) imbues even the idyllic nature scenes with a sense of doom. From a short story by Annie Proulx.