It’s Valentines Day tomorrow, so to get you in the romantic spirit, I decided to pull together a list of my favourite romantic movies. There’s a mix of rom coms and epic loves – something for everyone (even the boys). So, if you’re staying in this Valentine’s Day, grab some popcorn and get ready for some seriously romantic entertainment.
In no particular order…
Pretty Woman (1990)Starring: Julia Roberts and Richard Gere
In a line: A rich business man hires a prostitute to be his escort for various social events that he needs to attend. All strictly business… Until it isn’t.
Why watch? It may not be the most realistic movie ever made, it does a good job of making you feel all warm inside. Pretty Woman is a classic nineties rom-com (from the era of rom-coms): it has just the right amount of cheese, laughs and actual romance. You can’t go wrong.
William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet (1996)Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes (when they were like 12)
In a line: Star crossed lovers yadda yadda yadda. We all know the story.
Why watch? It’s THE original love story. And Baz Luhrmann’s soundtrack is excellent. It’s not exactly happily ever after though, if that’s what you’re looking for…
Wall-E (2008)Starring: Wall-E and Eve (as themselves!)
In a line: 800 years into the future, humans have been evacuated from Earth. Wall-E, a trash-compacting robot, has been left clean up the mess they left behind. When Eve, an advanced robot, comes to Earth looking for signs of life, Wall-E falls in love with her, and follows her back to space…
Why watch? This is a movie about robots that DON’T SPEAK. But it might just be the cutest film in the world. I had a tear in my eye the whole way through.
In a line: Two single friends decide to add sex to their friendship, without the complications of a full-blown relationship. Just sex. No feelings. We all see where this is going…
Why watch? This is basically a two-for-one, because the premise for both movies is pretty much identical. They’re both funny and pretty boyfriend-friendly, I think.
Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001)Starring: Renee Zellweger and Colin Firth (and Hugh Grant)
In a line: 30-something Bridget Jones is starting the new year on a quest for self improvement, and a boyfriend.
Why watch? She’s is constantly landing herself in the most cringe-worthy situations, and you can’t help but love her for it. Mark Darcy’s not bad either…
When Harry Met Sally… (1989)Starring: Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan
In a line: They meet and hate each other, then they just keep bumping into each other for 12 years. Eventually they become friends and (inevitably?) start to fall for one another.
Why watch? It’s a classic rom-com. One of the greats. You have to watch it.
The Notebook (2004)Starring: Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams
In a line: A country boy and a rich heiress fall in love. Lots of things get in the way, but against all odds, they find a way to be together.
Why watch? It’s a little cheesy and very cliched, but somehow it really, really works. Of the MANY Nicholas Sparks books that have made it to the silver screen, this is the one to watch. Oh, did I mention Ryan Gosling stars?
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)Starring: Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper
In a line: Pat suffers from Bipolar disorder and Tiffany is a recent widow with her own neuroses. They bond over anti-depressant side-effects. Pat is trying to win back his estranged wife and Tiffany needs a dance partner for a competition, so they strike up a deal to help each other out.
Why watch? This isn’t your typical romantic comedy – it’s very real and honest, and it gets pretty serious at times too. It is funny though. And Jennifer Lawrence is, of course, amazing.
10 Things I Hate About You (1999)Starring: Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles
In a line: The new kid falls in love with the most popular girl in school, but she can’t date unless her angry-at-the-world older sister does. So New Kid enlists the help of the school’s “Bad Boy” to win her over.
Why watch? Another Shakespeare modernisation – The Taming of the Shrew this time (and a tiny bit less faithful to the original than R+J, above). This is not a typical teen romance – it’s funny and well acted, and the characters are genuinely likeable (I defy you not to fall in love with Heath Ledger). The cheese factor is also very low, so it will appeal to all.
Dirty Dancing (1987)Starring: Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey
In a line: A holiday romance between a rich girl on vacation with her family, and a dance instructor who works at the resort she’s staying at. They fall in love, and they dance a lot too.
Why watch? If I had to choose, I’d say Dirty Dancing is my favourite romantic movie. It just makes me happy. There is also something very earnest and innocent about it. Plus, the soundtrack is the shit – I actually owned the CD at one point (this is almost unheard of for me).
So there you have it, my top ten favourite romantic movies, just in time for Valentine’s Day. What’s your favourite romantic movie?