“Rom-Coms,” or romantic comedies, are a universally known movie genre that divides viewers on their relevance and entertainment qualities. Some think Rom-Coms are too sappy and convoluted to even give the titles a second glance, while everyone else loves them, even if they don’t admit it. If you’re looking to watch a new movie, introduce yourself to a new genre, or rediscover an old gem; here are my top picks.
Best Holiday Season Rom-Com – “The Holiday”
Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet switch houses, and then lives, for the holidays. Two heartbroken girls, Iris (Winslet) and Amanda (Diaz), move across the world to get away from their previous lives, and in turn, they both discover that life can be more than what it seems. Their new romances show that people are brought together under many circumstances and that the power of love is greater than all else.
Best 90s Rom-Com – “10 Things I Hate About You”
Based on Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, this classic storyline gets a reboot in Seattle during the late 90s. Katarina Stratford (played by Julia Stiles) is the undatable sister of Blanca, who is only allowed to date if Katarina does. When the boy (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) interested in Blanca discovers this, he sets out on a mission to get Patrick (played by Heath Ledger), the “bad” boy, to date Katarina. Through the ups and downs of high school relationships, all of the teens learn what they want and who they want to be with.
Best New Rom-Com – “Crazy Rich Asians”
Released in 2018, this movie received accolades from fans and critics alike. The story is based upon the book, Crazy Rich Asians, and details the trials of Rachel Chu trying to integrate herself into her boyfriend’s wealthy family on a trip to Singapore for a wedding. The cast is packed with talent including Constance Wu, Henry Golding, and Ken Jeong, all of whom are Asian. The movie not only touches hearts with its storyline, but also with its representation of the diverse Asian community, showing that you don’t have to be white to be in an outstanding rom-com.
Best Unexpected Rom-Com – “Stuck In Love”
This indie movie is one that I found simply by browsing around on Netflix; as soon as it was over I was enamored with the storylines and the characters. The movie follows three love stories–one between parents, one between their son and a girl, and another between their daughter and a boy–and shows how all of their stories are the same yet different. The storyline and characters are relatable and extremely human by focusing on the raw emotions and experiences of all of the characters. The movie has an R-rating and the cast is studded with familiar faces including Logan Lerman, Lily Collins, Jennifer Connelly, and Nat Wolff.
Best Funny Rom-Com – “50 First Dates”
The iconic comedic duo, Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler star in this Hawaiian love story. Sandler plays a marine biologist, Henry, whose life dream is to study walruses in Alaska until he meets Lucy (Barrymore) in a local restaurant. As it turns out, she has lost her short-term memory and is unable to remember each past day, posing some challenges for Sandler. They spend the length of the movie trying to make sure that they are both truly happy and getting what they want. Perhaps the best character is Sandler’s best friend, Ula (Rob Schneider), who provides light-hearted comedy in every scene he’s in. The movie is just as goofy as most of Sandler’s others but shines through with an adorable love story and an intriguing plot.
Best Classic Rom-Com – “Say Anything”
This classic follows the love story of Lloyd Dobler (played by John Cusack), a comedic underachiever, and Diane Court (Ione Skye), a valedictorian, immediately after their high school graduation. Court undergoes some family trouble and begins to go out of her comfort zone with Dobler, each of them growing in different ways. However, Court’s father does not believe Dobler is the proper boyfriend and stresses their relationship further. This coming-of-age Rom-Com includes the boombox-outside-the-window scene and encapsulates the ups and downs of being a teenager in love.
Rom-Coms are a diverse genre and hold something for everyone. Whether you watch them for the humor, the romance, or both, you will not be disappointed by any of the ones above. Most of these can be found on Netflix, Hulu, or any other streaming platforms. Love life, ‘Bos!