These Are The Best Romantic Films (& Where To Watch Them)
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These Are The Best Romantic Films (& Where To Watch Them)

From rom coms to musicals to heart rending classics

Hopeless romantic? We hear you. If there’s one way to quench your thirst for all things love, it’s a romantic film (or a novel, perhaps). Here are our favourites.

Best Romantic Films For Valentine’s Day 2024

Clueless (1995)

Maybe Cher (Alicia Silverstone) has an interesting relationship with her step-brother (Paul Rudd), but Clueless epitomises the golden era of teen rom-coms, especially that microtrend of modern teenage twists on classic novels and Shakespeare plays; Clueless is a thickly guised adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma. Cher is a wealthy and materialistic student at Beverly Hills high, learning to cope with adolescence. In helping a new girl at school reach her full potential, Cher realises she might have some untapped potential of her own.

WATCH: Free with a Paramount+ subscription.

About Time (2013)

Oft-cited as a favourite film in the C&TH office, About Time, from romantic movie heavyweight Richard Curtis, stars Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams at their best. Tim Lake (Gleeson) – like all of the men in his family, including his father James (Bill Nighy) – possesses the ability to travel in time, which he ultimately uses to pursue his romantic interest, Mary (McAdams).

WATCH: Available to rent on Prime Video.

You’ve Got Mail (1998)

The third instalment in the Meg Ryan-Tom Hanks-Nora Ephron multiverse is, in my opinion, the best of the three. Films based on gimmicky tech don’t always age well, but You’ve Got Mail is a heartwarming snapshot of the early internet era, and an interesting precursor to modern online dating. Set in New York City, the anonymity of the internet bridges the gap between the otherwise business rivals Joe (Hanks) and Kathleen (Ryan).

WATCH: Available to rent on Prime Video.

Mamma Mia! (2008)

This film has everything: a show stopping soundtrack, a scene-stealing cast of stars, a sun-soaked setting, and a lovely romantic plot to boot. Based on the West End musical of the same name, this love story follows Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) and her mother (Meryl Streep) in the final stages of planning Sophie’s wedding to her adventurous fiance Sky (Dominic Cooper). With one missing piece of the puzzle, her father, Sophie invites three unwitting men (Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth and Stellan Skarsgård, no less) from her mother’s past to the ceremony hoping she might find the answers to her questions once and for all.

WATCH: Available to rent on Prime Video, or free with a NOW TV Cinema subscription.

Call Me By Your Name (2017)

Timothée Chalamet achieved global fame (and acclaim) after leading Luca Guadagnino’s adaptation of André Aciman romantic novel, Call Me By Your Name. Starring opposite Armie Hammer, the atmospheric movie transports us to sun-soaked Italy in the 1980s, where 17-year-old Elio (Chalamet) is summering with his family, when 24-year-old graduate university student Oliver (Hammer) arrives to assist Elio’s father’s archaeology research.

WATCH: Stream free with a Netflix subscription.

Easy A (2010)

Before Emma Stone became Bella Baxter in Poor Things, Mia Dolan in La La Land, and even before she became Gwen Stacey in The Amazing Spider-Man, and before Penn Badley became the loveable rogue Joe Goldberg in Netflix’s You, they starred in the cinematic masterpiece that is Easy A. When Olive lies to her best friend (none other than Aly Michalka) about losing her virginity, a girl overhears their conversation and it spreads like wildfire and Olive is forced to make the best of a bad situation. It’s funny, it’s heart-warming, and it’s got Stanley Tucci as well.

WATCH: Stream free with a Netflix or Prime Video subscription.

Love Actually (2003)

OK, maybe it’s a Christmas film, and maybe it hasn’t aged all that well, but no list of the best romance films is complete without Love Actually. Directed by Richard Curtis, love in its multitudinous forms is illustrated across 10 interweaving plots starring Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Colin Firth, Liam Neeson, Kiera Knightly, Alan Rickman and (somehow) more.

WATCH: Available to rent on Prime Video.

Dirty Dancing (1987)

Arguably not one of but the best romantic film of all time, Dirty Dancing is a timeless classic following Frances, a girl who becomes smitten with a rebellious dancing instructor while holidaying at a resort with her family. It was a box office hit upon its release, capturing the hearts of audiences across the globe – and never really letting them go. Watch for iconic costumes, dancing, music and, of course, Patrick Swayze.

WATCH: Stream free with a Prime Video subscription.

Titanic (1997)

Another romantic classic for good reason. James Cameron’s Titanic is the perfect romantic disaster film, and is, of course, even based on a true story. Starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio in seminal roles, it’s worth the watch just to keep up with cultural references, but is also a length, heart breaking film to sink your teeth into this Valentine’s Day.

WATCH: Stream free with a Disney+ subscription.

Crazy Stupid Love (2011)

Just over five years before Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone starred as Sebastian and Mia in the Oscar nominated (ahem) La La Land (2017), they starred opposite one another in the less divisive Crazy Stupid Love. Cal (Steve Carell) is heartbroken when his wife (Julianne Moore) asks for a divorce. To get over his loss, he starts picking women up at a bar with the help of new friend Jacob (Gosling). With multiple strands and a star-studded cast, Crazy Stupid Love is always worth a watch (or rewatch).

WATCH: Stream for free with a Netflix subscription.

17 Again (2009)

Funny, sweet and surprisingly tender, 17 Again is one of those slightly strange ‘00s films with unexplained supernatural elements. That said, the love at its heart (both romantic and familial) is absolutely timeless. Mike is almost divorced and dissatisfied with life, longing to be 17 again so he can relive his glory days. One day, he wakes up to discover his wish has been granted.

WATCH: Stream for free with a Prime Video subscription.

Pride & Prejudice (2005)

OK fine, we’ll admit it: Jane Austen’s magnum opus is one of the best romantic films of all time. Much adapted, Joe Wright’s rendition starring Kiera Knightly and Matthew McFayden is particularly charming. That rain scene… Just swoon worthy. Need I say more?

WATCH: Available to rent via Prime Video.

27 Dresses (2008)

Wedding films can be a bit of a drag, but 27 Dresses completely rethinks the form, following wedding fanatic Jane (Katherine Heigl hot off Grey’s Anatomy) who is always a bridesmaid and never a bride. And, when her sister moves back to town and falls in love with Jane’s dreamboat boss, it looks like Jane is about to be a bridesmaid all over again.

WATCH: Stream free with a Disney+ subscription.

How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days (2003)

Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey shine in this ‘00s classic, following journalist Andie Anderson (Hudson) tasked to pen an article on losing a man in 10 days, while Ben (McConaughey) seeks to prove to his colleagues that he could make any woman fall in love with him. A perfect storm.

WATCH: Stream free with a Paramount+ subscription.