When some characters are having a peaceful night together, there's a good chance they will take a moment to admire the stars. They may try and Make a Wish (often with a shooting star), or point out constellations, or ponder the cosmic significance of human life, or even speculate about what's out there in space. Sometimes this leads to a romantic moment with the peaceful atmosphere, but the characters involved can be friends or family and the scene can still work. The moment could even feature a single character, which often gives the scene a much lonelier feeling.
It's always quiet and calm, sometimes even introspective, and allows for a nice moment of character interaction if there are multiple characters. If there's drama involved, it's almost always a moment of internal conflict, and even comedic moments tend to be innocent and light-hearted. In this way, it might be an Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene, especially when the moment comes as a break from more intense or active scenes. There can also be a bit of Foreshadowing if one of the "stars" turns out to be an alien ship or the like. In a romantic scene, this trope may lead to Girls Stare at Scenery, Boys Stare at Girls.
- Being a series with an astronomy theme, Asteroid in Love has no lack of this. The following is an incomplete list.
- The flashback in the first chapter/episode, when a young Mira has her first stargazing during a chance meeting with Ao, and when they made The Promise.
- In the fifth chapter, adapted in the second episode, the Earth Sciences Club's welcoming barbecue includes a stargazing session. For former members of the Geology Club, this serves as their introduction to astronomy, but the scene also includes Mira and Ao's reflections of their relationship.
- The twenty-second chapter, adapted in the seventh episodes, involves the Earth Sciences Club being voluntary instructors for a children's stargazing event.
- During an anime-only part of the eleventh episode, the optical group of the Shiny Star Challenge does this on the rooftop of the Ishigaki Observatory while the staff are setting up. They are mostly talking about life.
- Last but not least, there's an implication that Mira and Ao do that frequently together after they reunited. Before Chapter 30/ Episode 9, when Ao starts living in Mira's house, they usually so stargazing on their own balconies while chatting over stars on the phone, the first time of which being animated at the end of the first episode.
- In Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE!, Atsushi Kinugawa and his Evil Former Friend Kinshirou Kusatsu lie on their backs stargazing as children. They promise to remain friends (they don't) and each makes a wish on a shooting star. There's a repeating motif of shooting stars in the sky which parallels the relationship between the two. The two wishes end up being central to the plot, as the apparent failure of Kinshirou's is his Start of Darkness.
- Heaven's Lost Property has an unusually somber example. A distracted Ikaros is staring at a brilliant full moon when a suspicious Sugata confronts her about her identity, powers, and origins. Her dour responses convince him that as far as Ikaros is concerned, she is the blank slate she claims to be.
Sugata (to himself): So the problem becomes a question: who sent Ikaros to Tomoki?
- Chapter 56 of Kaguya-sama: Love Is War has the student council watching the Autumn Moon. Kaguya tries to turn it into her latest Battle of Wits with Shirogane, but -in true You Were Trying Too Hard fashion- Shirogane's innocent love of the stars turns him into a full-blown romantic that reduces her to putty in his hands.
- Gunslinger Girl
Alphonso: It's just the thought of these little girls who can kill terrorists and speak three languages, and here they are singing Beethoven in the bitter cold. It's a shame they have to be cyborgs.
- In the opening Two-Part Episode Henrietta messes up on a mission, so her handler Jose takes her up on the roof where there's a telescope and tells her the story of Orion and Artemis. Which turns out to be foreshadowing of their own fate when he's accidentally shot by Henrietta.
- At the end of the first season at a time when Angelica is dying on a hospital bed, Triela convinces their handlers to take them out to the training range to see a meteor shower (there's the problem of light pollution, but enhanced cyborg vision makes up for it). Their handlers are bemused when these cyborg assassins start singing Ode to Joy in German as they watch. Angelica also watches the shower from her hospital bed, the same song playing on her stereo from a disc one of the girls left for her.
- In Revolutionary Girl Utena, Akio has a planetarium and telescope in his house. Akio likes to look up at the stars on his ceiling and make philosophical observations, and he often dispenses advice to Utena during solemn sessions of stargazing. These scenes develop the Akio-Utena romance, as Utena grows to trust Akio during these sessions. The fact that the stars are a planetarium show and not real is symbolic, representing the fact that almost everything in the world of Ohtori Academy is an illusion created and manipulated by Akio.
- The comic has this as an Establishing Character Moment for Skywise (who else?) at the beginning of the very first story arc, where he and Cutter has a moment of friendship together after the rescue of Redlance, and right before the forest is set on fire. The scene has a parallel at the end of the Final Quest arc, where the two paraphrase the same conversation, while they prepare for the final farewell.
- Also, a couple of instances where Skywise uses this as a pick-up line for getting an elven girl to lie down. This happens with Ruffel early on and is later taken up by Newstar to get Skywise to comply.
- In Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics), AI Nicole has been working on projecting a Mobian form for months, as she reveals to Sally's one night. Nicole tells Sally she dreams of watching the stars after she reverts to her handheld form Sally lies down and realizes she never properly looked at the stars before.
- Beetle Bailey: One strip has Beetle telling Sarge to look up at the stars. Sarge refuses, because he's got a leadership class to go to, so the last thing he needs is to be reminded of how small he is compared to the vastness of the cosmos.
- Calvin and Hobbes: One strip has Calvin look up at the stars and cry "I'm significant!" A moment later he adds, deflated, "screamed the dust speck."
- Funky Winkerbean: One early strip has Funky and Crazy Harry looking up at the stars, noting that they are obligated by "union rules" to do so at least once.
- Garfield: At one point, Jon says that looking up at the stars makes him feel insignificant and asks if Garfield doesn't agree. Garfield says he does - he also feels that Jon is insignificant.
- Hägar the Horrible: One strip has Hamlet ask Hagar if looking up at the stars doesn't make him think. Hagar says that it sure does - why, the stars are so pitifully small, and he is so large and important!
- The Heart Trilogy: In the eleventh chapter of Heart of Fire, Kathryn and Smaug watch stars in companionable silence while sitting at Erebor's entrance. They later reminisce this when they do this again in the tenth chapter of Heart of the Inferno.
- Long Time No See: As the party is winding down, Shinji and Asuka go out on a balcony to get some fresh air and look up at the starts while they talk about their post-War lives and choices, before sharing one kiss.
One of the empty balconies seemed inviting enough. As Shinji stepped outside, letting the music and chatter fading behind him, he took a deep breath of the chill air. Looking up, he could even notice some stars in the sky.
It was such a big contrast to the muggy and noisy climate inside, it felt like another world. A world, he felt much more comfortable in – quiet, peaceful.
"You know, I never could appreciate them as much as other people do. But it looks nice, for a change."
Shinji turned a little to the side, though he already knew who had stepped up next to him. "I almost thought you were already gone."
Asuka shook her head, keeping her gaze fixed on the sky. "Not yet. I... There's something I still have to do..."
- An American Tail: The film's signature song "Somewhere Out There" takes place as a Distant Duet between Fievel and his sister, Tanya, looking out at the night sky and taking comfort that even though they don't know where the other is, they're still out there looking for each other.
- The Lion King:
- Simba, Timon and Pumbaa spend a night staring at the stars and wondering exactly what they're made of. Timon guesses fireflies, Pumbaa guesses they're "giant balls of gas", and Simba mentions the story he was taught as a cub, that stars are really the ancient kings of the past watching over them, showing how he still hasn't fully moved on from his past.
- In The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, Kiara and Kovu have a scene where they're staring up at the sky and pointing out different constellations (pictured above), like a rabbit and "two lions killing each other for a scrap of meat". Kovu admits it's something he's never done before, while Kiara had done it all the time with Simba. When she mentions the "kings of the past" story, Kovu gets upset and asks if she thinks Scar is up there, too.
- Shrek: While stopping for the night as they escort Fiona to Duloc, Shrek and Donkey stare at the night sky, as Shrek points out the constellations, all of which are about famous ogres.
Donkey: So, uh... Are there any donkeys up there?Shrek: Well, there's, um... Gabby, the small and annoying.Donkey: Okay, okay, I see, I see it now. Yeah, the big shining one, right there. Right, th-that one there?Shrek: (beat) That's the moon.
- In Turning Red, Mei and her friends take a moment to look up at the stars during Tyler's birthday party.
- WALL•E has a scene where the titular robot gazes wistfully into the night sky, which shows how lonely he is on the post apocalyptic earth.
- The Beach: Richard and Francoise had a night on the beach taking pictures of the stars. Richard starts talking about parallel universes, and in his internal monologue, discusses how he's become infatuated with Francoise as the two mess around with the star camera.
- Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: After Jen and Lo's love scene, they spend an intimate moment gazing at the stars in a hot spring, while Lo recounts his childhood.
- As Sir Bowen and the dragon from Dragonheart prepare for a night's rest al fresco, Bowen points out the constellation Draco in the night sky and suggests calling the dragon by that name. The dragon replies that he'd feel honored to be named after an array of stars.
- The star watching scene in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind made it onto the movie poster. Clementine takes Joel on a romantic trip onto a frozen lake where they lay down and watch the stars. Clementine asks Joel which constellations he knows but he doesn't know any, so he makes one up. Watch the scene here.
- Kong: Skull Island: A variation. Weaver and Conrad watch Skull Island's night sky together, except instead of stars, the night sky is covered by a beautiful green aurora. The next scene shows that Kong is peacefully doing the same elsewhere on the island, showing he's a lot more than just a ruthless beast.
- Lady Bird has a star gazing scene involving Lady Bird and her first love Danny. She asks him to pick a star for them and then they start cuddling. Afterwards, they discuss a name for their star with Danny suggesting "Claude" which Lady Bird finds too pretentious so she suggests "Bruce" instead.
- Men in Black:
- In the opening of the first film Agent K's partner, Agent D, after not reacting fast enough during a case, looks up and points out how beautiful the stars are and how easily the Men in Black take them for granted, leading into his decision to retire. This is echoed at the end, when Agent K decides to do the same.
- In the second film, the memory-wiped K finally gets said memory back after looking up at the stars, knowing that there's more out there.
- Women Talking: While planning the escape of Ona and the other women, August and Ona sit on a rooftop and August teaches her how to know which direction they're facing by angling one's fist at the Southern Cross. She then admits that she already knew how to do it, and it was just an excuse to have a tender moment with her boyhood crush.
- Sherlock Holmes and Watson go on a camping trip. In the middle of their first night, Holmes wakes up Watson and says, "What does that beautiful starry sky above us mean, Watson?" Watson replies, "Well, I'm not sure, but when I look at it I get a sense of how small we all are in a boundless universe. What does it mean to you, Holmes?" Holmes replies, "Well, I'm not sure, but I think it means somebody has stolen our tent."
- Mansfield Park: Edmund and Fanny talk about the sublimity of Nature, about stars and how gorgeous they are. From the house, they can see Arcturus looking very bright and the Bear. Fanny wishes to see Cassiopeia and Edmund encourages her to go outside with him to "have star-gazing" but he wants to stay inside for a while to hear his sisters and their guests singing. He somehow forgets about the stars, to Fanny's great disappointment.
- Leaves of Grass, "On the Beach at Night Alone":
As I watch the bright stars shining, I think a thought of the clef of the universes and of the future.
- Saturnin: The unnamed narrator and his love interest Miss Barbora spend summer at his grandfather's beautiful villa. They watch stars together on the terrace, try to see a shooting star, and are mostly silent. The narrator muses whether it was right when he decided not to try to kiss her. However, he has a very specific idea about their first kiss. He wants them to simply "kiss", not to "kiss her" or steal the kiss from her.
- There are many scenes like this in Warrior Cats, with the added significance that the Stars Are Souls of Clan cats who have passed away, so they're actually looking at their ancestors in their version of heaven. One such scene in The Darkest Hour has Firestar heading out alone to think and watching the stars on Sunningrocks; he ends up yowling to the sky asking them for help, and they answer him in a dream after he falls asleep there.
- I Wish You All the Best: While Ben and Nathan are Sitting on the Roof, Nathan tries to point out constellations, even though the light pollution makes most of them impossible to see. He admits that he's making them all up.
- Played for Horror in Cruel Summer. On the night of the family hunting trip in 1993, a distressed Kate ends up sitting out and looking at the stars, having a sweet and emotional chat...with Martin, the same person who grooms and later kidnaps her for months. As this fate is already well-known, this scene is used to show how Martin manipulated her, turning a normally nice moment horrifying.
- Doctor Who introduced The Eleventh Doctor and Amy Pond with a special stargazing trailer that did not appear in an episode. There was a 3D surround sound version made for cinemas.
- "Vincent and the Doctor" also features Eleven and Amy stargazing, along with Vincent van Gogh. He shows them how he sees the world, turning the whole night sky into a version of his famous painting, "The Starry Night".
- "Partners in Crime" features a scene between Donna and her grandfather Wilf, stargazing with a telescope, which sets up their camaraderie and establishes where Donna's head is at since her first appearance in "The Runaway Bride."
- Farscape. At the end of "Green Eyed Monster" Aeryn Sun vents to John Crichton over how their Interspecies Romance has ruined her previously well-ordered life. Crichton coaxes her into joining him at a spaceship window looking out onto a nebula, and shows her a handwritten starchart he's making, with Aeryn as his guiding star. Said star twinkles as they have a Big Damn Kiss.
- House of Anubis: Nina and Fabian share a small moment together in season one admiring the night sky from Fabian's bedroom window. In addition to being another moment of Ship Tease for the pairing, this moment also allows them to figure out the meaning of the next clue, which turns out to be tied to a downstairs telescope.
- Legion: In "Chapter 22", the final clip of Charles Xavier and Gabrielle's Falling-in-Love Montage is of them looking up at the night sky, which is a very romantic setting for the couple's First Kiss.
- The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power: After a heated argument with Gil-galad about keeping secrets from his king that could save the Elves from they fate, Elrond stares at the stary sky and contemplates about what he should do. He is possibly looking after his father, Eärendil the Mariner.
- Star Trek: Voyager
- Early in the series, Captain Janeway finds a member of her crew casting a Longing Look at the stars out the window, as they've on the far side of the galaxy and everyone is longing to get home.
- In "Counterpoint", Janeway and Kashyk spend a UST-filled brainstorming session together, including gazing at an aurora-like star cluster. Slash Fic fans have also noted the number of times Janeway and Seven of Nine have a close conversation in Astrometrics.
- Scream: Noah and Riley spend a night out on the football field, drinking martinis and talking about fictional romance plots while gazing at the stars. This culminates in a kiss between them.
- Les Misérables: Inspector Javert does this as he sings "Stars", emphasizing his steadfast devotion to what he thinks is right, as he gazes at the stars alone and relates more to them than to other human characters. The Dark Reprise turns this on his head as, in the midst of an existential crisis, Javert sings that "...the stars are black and cold," moments before deciding to kill himself.
- You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown: At the end of the play, Linus, Lucy and Sally are admiring the stars, with Sally and Linus wondering what exactly they're looking at.
Linus: It could be a star, or maybe even a satellite.
Sally: It could be a satellite! I wonder...
- In Carl Orff's opera Der Mond, Petrus's near-soliloquy about gazing upon the earth from on high and seeing the world-wheel turning beyond the clouds captures the nocturnal mood, if not the letter, of this trope.
- Mario Party:
- Mario Party DS: In the minigame Star Catchers, all players stand on a house's balcony and look at the sky during an early evening (at that time, the Sun is almost done setting). When the minigame begins, stars will begin appearing one by one and whoever points at it first (done with the stylus in the Touch Screen) will claim it. Each claimed star will have a color that tells who claimed it: Blue for Player 1, red for Player 2, green for Player 3, and yellow for Player 4. After 30 seconds, the minigame ends, and then the pointed stars will begin disappearing four by four (one from each player), making it so only the remaining stars from the player who claimed the most remains, though those will then begin disappearing one by one at a faster rate. This player is then declared the winner. It's actually possible for two or more players to celebrate a tie if they end up claiming the same amount of stars, because this is a Battle Minigame.
- Mario Party 9: The intro cutscene shows Mario and friends gazing up at a sky sparkling with Mini-Stars, but their stargazing party is halted when Bowser creates a black hole that causes them all to disappear, thus setting the game in motion. At the end of the game, the gang pick up where they left off after the Mini-Stars have been rescued.
- Mario Party: Island Tour: In the minigame Starring Artist, the characters stand onto a balcony and look upward to see the starry sky. When the minigame starts, some lines connecting certain stars will be shown, and each character has to use the touch screen of the 3DS to draw within those lines to reveal a constellation (modeled after a classic Mario enemy). The characters who draw faster will receive more points (the one who takes the longest won't get to finish the drawing, and thus won't earn anything). After three rounds of drawing, whoever scored the highest wins.
- Mario Party Superstars: The achievements that can be completed during the course of the gameplay are represented in a night sky as stars that form constellations. When an achievement is met, its star shines; it's possible to see these constellations from Kamek's crystal ball in the Data House, and they're modeled after objects like a Warp Pipe, a Dice Block, or a Super Star. Looking further up in the sky reveals an extra constellation shaped like a crown, whose stars represent online achievements.
- In Melody, after the dinner celebrating the end of the title character's lessons with the protagonist, the two of them have the option to go stargazing together.
- The Suikoden series uses these scenes a number of times, often on the nights before big battles to show the characters reflecting on their lives.
- To the Moon shows one between Johnny and River when they were still kids.
- The Starry Night commercial for Halo 3 begins with one of these, with two children (presumably a younger Master Chief and another Spartan) wondering if alien life exists, with the boy, ironically, hoping to meet them.
- The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel has one between Alisa and Rean in Chapter 3 of the first game, during the field study to the Nord Highlands. During the scene, Alisa ends up explaining to Rean that after her father died, her mother Irina became Married to the Job. She also tells Rean how Irina betrayed her father Gwyn (Alisa's grandfather) to take up the position as CEO of the Reinford Group.
- Undertale, despite being set Beneath the Earth, manages to pull off a Second-Hand Storytelling version of this using sparkling ceiling stones. The Echo Flowers in an area of Waterfall record wishes whispered by monsters to these stones, which unsurprisingly include wishes that they could go to the surface and see the actual stars. There are two telescopes in this area for the player to use: one has a clue painted over the lens, and the other, managed by Sans, has some red stuff on the other end.
- "Episode 3: Backdoor" of Code 7 begins with Raven Sitting on the Roof of the hideout, looking at the stars for what she feels is the first time and contemplating who she really is. It is up to you and META to try to cheer her up.
Raven: So far away. So many... we can see them, even when they're long dead. False stars. So much in our world is a lie... perhaps everything.
- In Ikemen Sengoku, Sasuke's route has a scene where he and the female MC sit on the roof of Azuchi Castle and gaze up at the stars through his handmade telescope. It's a pretty romantic scene (though they're not quite at the romantic phase of their relationship at that time) and gives the MC some insight into how Sasuke likes looking at the stars because it makes him feel that all things, good or bad, happen for a reason.
- The title page of Cameron and Corinna has the two protagonists looking at the moon together.
- Ozy and Millie: Millie defies comic strip tradition by refusing to feel unimportant when looking up at the stars. She's incredibly important, she'll have you know, and some dumb balls of gas don't change that!
- In Critical Role, Caleb and Nott get one of these while aboard the Mystake.
- The episode "Sokka's Master" of Avatar: The Last Airbender starts with the main characters lying on a hill at night, watching a meteor shower.note Unfortunately, their relaxation is interrupted when a meteor lands close by, starting a fire that threatens a nearby town.
- Skull Island (2023): In the Whole Episode Flashback, Kong and the Island Girl watch the stars side-by-side, and the Island Girl contemplates the events of Kong: Skull Island aloud.
- The Simpsons:
- In "Mother Simpson", when Homer's long-lost mother is forced to flee Springfield after a brief reunion, Homer tearfully waves her goodbye as she drives into the sunset, then sits and watches the stars as the credits roll.
- In "Brother from the Same Planet", Homer and his new "little brother" Pepi sit and look at the stars, something the latter has never done because he's lived in the city all his life. Homer tries to name some constellations, which are all members of the Dallas Cowboys.