My Top 14 Romantic Comedies From the Last 14 Years
It’s that time of year again where half of us are hugging their special someone while the other half are hugging their pillows. But have no fear, romantic comedies are here. These are my favorites from the last 14 years.
14. Hope Springs (2012)
One of 2012’s most overlooked comedies starred Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones as an older couple who seek to revitalize their marriage with the help from a marriage counselor (played by Steve Carell). It’s nice to see Streep play a lighter role every once and a while and even TLJ’s deadpan humor gets you laughing.
13. Warm Bodies (2013)
One of last year’s most overlooked comedies was a zombie take on Shakespeare’s classic Romeo & Juliet. Nicholas Hoult stars as the very-dead “R”, whose continuous narration gives his corpse some life, comes across the very-alive Julie, played by Teresa Palmer. I was actually quite surprised by this film as it is one of the best entries in Hollywood’s current zombie trend.
12. Ruby Sparks (2012)
Ruby Sparks is a creative take on the romantic comedy. This indie flick is about a struggling novelist who begins to write about the girl in his dreams and she inadvertently comes to life. Stars Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan (who also wrote the film) have so much chemistry as they are also a real-life couple. If you’re looking for a quirky romance, you’ve come to the right place.
11. 50 First Dates (2004)
Back in the day when Adam Sandler starred in fairly decent films, he and his Wedding Singers co-star Drew Barrymore reunited for this Hawaii-set RomCom. Sandler is an animal trainer who tries to win the heart of a school teacher, except she has extreme short-term memory loss. It’s not necessarily a deep film, but it’s full of laughs and The Beach Boys.
10. Tangled (2010)
When you think about it, Disney’s Tangled is really a romantic comedy. Rapunzel and Flynn Rider (voiced by Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi) use each other to get ahead, but in the end they fall in love. Filled with colorful characters and enjoyable music, this film sparked a resurgence of Disney animation greatness.
9. Love Actually (2003)
Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Emma Thompson, Colin Firth, Bill Nighy, Laura Linney, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Martin Freeman, Rowan Atkinson, Keira Knightley, and Andrew Lincoln are some of the many faces that appear in the widely popular Christmas movie. Love is in the air (well…in Britain really) in Love Actually.
8. Don Jon (2013)
Joseph Gordon-Levitt, produced, wrote, directed, and starred in one of the sexiest romantic comedies in recent memory. JGL plays a womanizing, porn-addicted gym nut who falls in love for the first time. He and Scarlett Johansson give some of their best performances to date. And sorry ladies (and gentlemen for that matter), no nudity from either of them.
7. Legally Blonde (2001)
Definitely the most “girly” on the list, Legally Blonde is really a well-made film. Reese Witherspoon goes from the pretty sorority sister to a law student to win over the man she thinks is “the one”. Legally Blonde has an array of wonderful characters and big laughs. My advice, stay clear of the sequel.
6. Enough Said (2013)
Enough Said is one of the most down-to-earth films I’ve seen in a long time. Television icons Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the late James Gandolfini star as divorcees whose relationship becomes complicated. These characters, dialogue, and emotions all feel real. And being one of Gandolfini’s last performances, it is certainly one of his best.
5. Shallow Hal (2001)
You can learn a lesson or two from Shallow Hal. In one of Jack Black’s best movies, he stars as a womanizer who after unknowingly being placed under a spell falls in love with a 300-pound woman as he only sees her inner beauty. That 300-pound woman is played by the gorgeous Gwyneth Paltrow. This is definitely a feel-good romantic comedy.
4. Crazy, Stupid, Love (2011)
Steve Carell, Julianne Moore, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Kevin Bacon, and Marisa Tomei star in one of the most well-written romantic comedies of modern times. While Carell tries to save his marriage, Gosling struggles to impress a girl who has stolen his heart. With great humor and interesting plot twists, Crazy, Stupid, Love is a real treat.
3. Midnight in Paris (2011)
Midnight in Paris is one of my favorite Woody Allen films of all time. Owen Wilson fills in the shoes of a Woody-type character who accidentally travels back in time to the 1920’s Paris and falls in love with a woman from that era. Did I forget to mention that he’s already engaged? This film is a love letter to Paris, enriched with the culture of yesteryear. The ensemble cast includes Rachel McAdams, Michael Sheen, Marion Cotillard, Corey Stoll, Adrian Brody, Tom Hiddleston, and Kathy Bates.
2. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)
This romantic comedy reenforces an unwritten law of marriage: when you marry a woman, you marry her family. When a young Greek woman falls in love with a non-Greek man, she struggles to obtain her family’s approval. This type of dilemma occurs through multiple cultures, certainly not as funny though. My Big Fat Greek Wedding is fun, romantic, and absolutely hilarious.
1. Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
Silver Linings Playbook is everything you want in a romantic comedy: great performances, big laughs, and lots of lovin. Bradley Cooper stars as a man recently released from a mental hospital and attempts to win back his ex-wife with the help of a not-so-levelheaded widow, played by the Oscar-winning Jennifer Lawrence. Moving, charming, down-to-earth, sexy, and funny, Silver Linings Playbook is wonderful in every sense of the word.
Now if you excuse me, I’ve got some movies to watch.