Spending time at home? Spend it watching romantic comedies!
*Updated February 2021
Catching up on some classic Rom-Coms is a wonderful way to spend Valentine’s Day – with a significant other, with a group, or by yourself. I canvassed friends and family and compiled this list with their help.
These three classic Nora Ephron rom-com movies are everyone’s favorites!
You’ve Got Mail (1998) stars Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan who fall in love over the Internet.
When Harry Met Sally (1989) with Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal explores the issue of men and women just being friends. The strong chemistry between the two stars is delightful.
Sleepless in Seattle (1993) stars Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks as long distance daters. It’s wonderful.
Many more classic Rom-Coms:
One Fine Day (1996) stars Michelle Pfeiffer and George Clooney. Two strangers and their children cross paths on a New York City stressful day.
Serendipity (2001) stars John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale. They have one great night together in NYC and then lose track of each other for years.
While You Were Sleeping (1995) stars Sandra Bullock and Bill Pullman. What happens when love is right under your nose?
Hitch (2005) stars Will Smith. A tabloid journalist, and a doctor who matches people with their soul mates.
The Preacher’s Wife (1996) stars Gregory Hines and Whitney Houston. A Reverend’s marriage turns difficult until he prays for help. It is a PG “family-themed romantic fantasy” according to Rotten Tomatoes.
Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001) stars Renee Zellweger, Colin Firth and Hugh Grant. It is a reinterpretation of Jane Austin’s Pride and Prejudice.
Love and Basketball (2000) Two childhood friends share a love of basketball as their relationship turns from friends to lovers.
Just Wright (2010) stars Queen Latifah as a physical therapist who is a rabid basketball fan. She is working with an injured NBA star played by Common. It’s delightful!
How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1998) stars Angela Bassett as a lonely divorced mom and high-powered trader looking for a man.
My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002) is charming. A Greek woman falls in love with a non-Greek man, a big no-no. See how they work it out.
The Wedding Planner (2001) stars Jennifer Lopez as a wedding planner and Matthew McConaughey as a pediatrician whose fiancée hires Lopez as her wedding planner.
Notting Hill (1999) stars Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts. She’s an international film star and he owns a bookstore. You remember, “I’m also just a girl, standing in front of a boy….” sigh… It’s a touching and hilarious film, not to be missed.
Crazy Stupid Love (2011) stars Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Julianne Moore and Steve Carell. Steve Carell’s character becomes wingman to Ryan Gosling’s character.
Clueless (1995) stars Alicia Silverstone and is based on Jane Austen’s Emma.
Funny Face (1957) stars Audrey Hepburn, Fred Astaire and George Gershwin music. Who could ask for more?
Pretty Woman (1990) stars Richard Gere and Julia Roberts as a mismatched pair. He is a wealthy businessman who falls for a prostitute who turns out to be much more. It is rater R.
Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994) stars Hugh Grant and Andie MacDowell. Very witty dialogue, lots of characters and very funny.
Keeping the Faith (2000) stars Ed Norton and Ben Stiller. A priest (Ed Norton) and a rabbi(Ben Stiller) and their best friend in eighth grade (Jenna Elfman) as grown-ups.
My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997) stars Julia Roberts and Cameron Diaz pitted against each other for the same man.
There’s Something About Mary (1998) stars Ben Stiller and Cameron Diaz. Ted meets up with his high school crush thanks to a private detective. It’s great until the private detective starts to fall for Mary as well.
Say Anything (1989) stars John Cusack and Lone Skye in this girl-meets-boy teenage coming-of-age love story.
Return To Me (2000) stars David Duchovny and Minnie Driver. It is called “an endearing romantic comedy” by Rotton Tomatoes. Two lives become intertwined.
Love, Actually (2003) stars Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Colin Firth and Keira Knightley. This is a story about eight different couples and love.
Annie Hall (1977) is Woodie Allen’s most famous rom-com. It stars Diane Keaton in this quintessential New York City-based comedy.
It’s Complicated (2009) stars Alec Baldwin, Meryl Streep and Steve Martin. A divorced couple reconnects at their son’s graduation, but Steve Martin is a strong contender.
Moonstruck (1987) stars Nicolas Cage and Cher. A bookkeeper falls for the brother of the man she has agreed to marry. Unforgettable.
How to Steal a Million (1966) with Audrey Hepburn and Peter O’Toole. A woman must steal a statue from a Paris museum to help conceal her father’s art forgeries. Shot entirely in Paris, and a Givenchy wardrobe to drool over. Very charming.
P.S. I Love You (2007) stars Hilary Swank, Lisa Kudrow and Gerald Butler. A grieving widow receives 10 messages from her husband after his death, one a month. They are designed to help her adapt to her life without him.
The Proposal (2009) stars Sandra Bullock as a difficult boss who is about to be deported. She decides to make her long-suffering assistant marry her so she can stay in the country. A couple who start out hating each other and end up in love is not a new theme, and this movie doesn’t win affection immediately. Stick with it, and you might join the viewers who give it 3 out of four stars.
Sabrina 1995) is a remake of the 1954 movie written and directed by Billy Wilder. The main character, the daughter of a chauffeur, goes to Paris and remakes herself into a beautiful, self-confident woman. Entangled romances ensue.
The Big Sick (2017) stars Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan. It is the most recent rom-com, and is based on a true story.
How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (2003) stars Kate Hudson, Bebe Neuwirth. A journalist is writing a piece on things women do to alienate the men they love and she sets out to demonstrate it.
Love, Rosie (2014) stars Sam Claflin and Lily Collins. Best friends from childhood, Alex and Rosie are star-crossed lovers for far too long. Their characters are charming and the story is warming.
About Time (2013) Mary (Rachel McAdams) and Tim (Domhnall Gleeson) star in this delightful movie. It’s best explained as a light-hearted “Time Traveler’s Wife”. Bill Nighy, also in Love, Actually, plays Tim’s witty father. He explains to Tim that the men in their family can travel through time.
50 First Dates (2004) Henry (Adam Sandler) and Lucy (Drew Barrymore) plus a star-studded cast make this a fun one to watch. Lucy has been in a bad accident that caused a memory loss which erases everything that happens each day from her mind. While they hit it off when they met, Henry is a new person in Lucy’s life every day. He has to find a way to stay in her memory in order to become part of her future. Set in Hawaii, Beach Boy music, lots of sun and surf, this will warm up any chilly evening.
The Notebook (2004) Rachel McAdams, Ryan Gosling (do I have to say more?) and James Garner star in this epic love story between the uptown girl and her guy from across the tracks. It covers a lifetime of tenderness, grief, joy and release. An all-time classic, a handy box of Kleenex is recommended.
The Wedding Date(2005) Debra Messing, Dermot Mulroney and Amy Adams star in this movie based on the novel, Asking for Trouble written by Elizabeth Young. Kat’s (Debra Messings) sister, Amy (Amy Adams) is getting married and she needs a date that will make the best man, her former fiance, jealous. So she hires dreamy Mulroney from the yellow pages and the fun ensues.
Bridges of Madison County (1995) Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood fill the big screen with arguably the most passionate love story of all time. You’re just going to have to trust us on this one. It is rated PG-13.
An Affair to Remember (1957) stars Cary Grant and Deborah Karr. He’s a French playboy affianced to a rich heiress. She’s an American former nightclub singer headed home to meet her boyfriend. They meet on a cruise ship and fall in love. They make a plan to reunite in 6 months, on the top of the Empire State Building. He is waiting at the specified time, but fate intervenes and heartache ensues. This one is a little slower than we’re used to, but worth your patience. Get a little extra popcorn and enjoy!
Something’s Gotta Give (2003) – Jack Nicholson, Keanu Reeves, Diane Keaton and Amanda Peet star in this funny and touching movie about young love and later in life love.
The Holiday (2006) stars Cameron Diaz, Jack Black, Kate Winslet and Jude Law. It tells the story of two women, unlucky in love, who switch houses and countries to try and improve their love lives. It’s delightful.
As Good As It Gets (1997) stars Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt and Greg Kinnear. It is a wonderful story of an obsessive-compulsive cranky novelist and a single mother with a chronically ill son.
If you don’t see your favorite rom-com listed here, please add it in the Comments section below!