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7 Romances/Rom-Coms That Are Actually Worth Watching


Staff member
It's pretty common for guys to pretty much skip over this whole genre. And not entirely without reason. Many of the usual suspects for romance/rom-coms (abbreviated to romances from here on out) follow a very predictable plot in some very predictable settings. *cough* Hallmark *cough*

While some may argue that the appeal of those kinds of romances lies not in the plot per se but how exactly that predictable plot and setting will play out, these movies are a cut above the rest. A few are still kind of predictable but never to eye-rolling proportions, and some of them actually push the genre forward, asking interesting new questions and/or giving a unique twist on old ones.

1. Six Days, Seven Nights

One of the earliest romance films I watched. Of all the films listed here, this one is probably the most questionable in terms of if it actually belongs in the romance genre. The film is a rom-com about a soon-to-be-married couple who take a vacation to a tropical island. Things break routine however when the woman has to go out to a place of work at an emergency call and her plane gets brought down onto a deserted island in a storm. Her and her pilot then have to survive together.

While survival movies are typically pretty serious fare, this one isn't really that focused on that, although it surprisingly does a perfectly fine job of giving at least a modicum of realism. Instead the focus is on how the estranged husband and his stranded fiance deal with this separation, and comedy makes a lot of what would be dire situations rather light-hearted. Thankfully though, never cartoonishly so. I feel it has just the right amount of comedy, romance, realism, and action.

2. 50 First Dates

Another tropical rom-com. This one's even more light-hearted as it's a kinda typical Adam Sandler movie. The film is about Henry Roth, a person afraid of commitment but who lives a rather idealistic life as a marine biologist on one of the Hawaiian tropical islands. He meets Lucy and falls in love with her, but the next day after, she forgets all about him.

50 First Dates doesn't always strike true in terms of comedy, and in fact, you could probably consider this the weakest entry on this list, BUT I still definitely stand by putting this movie on the list, and it seems to get better and better as it goes along. And on top of that, there's even more to it than just the laughs. It really seems to convey in a very excellent way this... Sort of dreamy island life in many of its facets. So in conclusion, 50 First Dates may not leave you laughing for all of it, but it's still funny enough to be entertaining, and there's so many things about it that seem to enchant you long after you've finished watching it.

3. The Age of Adaline

Moving on to something more serious now, this movie is about a woman named Adaline born in the 1930s, but due to a freak accident in her 20s, her body has stopped aging. We then witness her life later in the 2010s where she has found ways to cope with her condition. It goes on from there.

Definitely the most pleasantly striking thing about this movie is Blake Lively's performance of Adaline. The way she is. Even the way she carries herself exudes grace, courtesy, beauty, and intelligence all at once. It's just incredible to watch, and Lively has truly knocked this role out of the park. Besides that, the movie is also quite intelligent with a great plot, great acting, and good cinematography. I don't think I have any complaints about this movie.

4. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

A more gritty movie, although not terribly so. Basically, it takes place in a world and time almost identical to our own, except a new technology has been developed that can erase memories as a customer wishes.

I don't know if I can get too much into it without spoiling it, but it does an excellent job of dealing with the importance of bad memories. Highly recommended for a watch at least once.

5. Crazy Stupid Love

Coming back again to the light-hearted rom-coms, this movie is about Steve Carell as Cal, middle aged and very recently divorced. He learns to get back into the dating game and picks up some bad ways of thinking in the process.

While the movie does focus more on the comedy side of things, it does still have a nice message about what true love entails, how it's different, and why it's worth it. I might to give this one another watch again though as I've only seen it once and I'm sure I've missed a few things about it.

6. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

The most recent rom-com I've seen, funnily enough, even though it's kinda old. Years ago, I saw a bit of it, wasn't that impressed with it, and later forgot about it, but recently, I decided to give it another chance since the last time I watched it, I was kinda young. So, the movie is somewhat heavily video-game themed. It centers around one Scott Pilgrim as he tries to get with and stay with the girl of his dreams, Ramona Flowers.

This movie likes to go all over the place, poking fun at hipster culture, making 50 classic video game references per minute, subtle and otherwise, and all while expounding on relationships with most importantly of all, showing how important it is to have some damn respect for yourself. Sadly, I think it's a film SOME people really need to watch. You know who you are. And finally, if anything else, part of me kinda likes that desolate hipster Canada town aesthetic, although I do wish the ending was a little different.

To me, it just made more sense for Scott to try again with Knives now that they've both matured. Ramona also indeed grew in the ways she needed to, but at the same time, I just don't think Scott and her are really quite the right fit for each other.

7. L.A. Story

This one is so charmingly light-hearted at the way it pokes fun at Los Angeles/California culture. The movie is about Steve Martin as Harris Telemacher. A comedic weathermen living in the eponymous city meeting an english girl and falling in love with her.

I don't think this movie really says anything too profound, but at the same time, when you would never expect it from such a movie, it slowly flips the tables around for some scenes and makes them serious and ethereal in a quite beautiful way. It's cracking jokes for 80-90% of its runtime, but when it's time in the plot to sit down and be serious, it shuts up and calmly gets out of its own way, showing a maturity and depth of emotion you'd never think would be there. And finally, the movie is very quotable both in its sober scenes and in its lighthearted ones.
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Sanctuary legend
Sanctuary contributor
Cookmaster supreme
Wouldn't really call Scott Pilgrim a rom-com, given that I've read the comics that spawned that movie. It's more of a Canadian hispter fantasy, lol.


Arch Disciple
Sanctuary legend
I haven't watched any of those movies, but I would suspect they're outside the usual romcoms.
I'd classify them as either romantic romcoms or romcom comedies. I prefer the latter, which is examplified by my favorites;

I love you Phillip Morris
Warm Bodies
Me, Myself & Irene
What Women Want
Yes Man
It's a boy girl thing

I wonder if Passengers would be an Action romcom...hmm