As many in my personal life know, I am a complete and utter sucker for anything romance. Whether it comes through an author’s writing, an actor’s performance, or someone just gossiping about their real life, I swoon. Basically, whatever their selling, I’m buying. And I thought this week, I would provide a list of all the rom-coms that have built up my expectations of love and yours.
1. The Proposal (2009)
How could I not include the movie that first introduced me to the deliciously sarcastic Ryan Reynolds? Not to mention Sandra Bullock, who everybody realized was the persona they wanted to portray as the queen of publishing with fabulous stilettos. But we all know the real reason we love this movie, and it has to do with the certain adorable and slightly crude comedic stylings of Betty White.
2. 13 Going on 30 (2004)
You have to admit that at the ripe age of 13, there is nothing you wanted more than to grow up. And now look at us, begging to return to the simplicity of childhood. But that’s the genius behind this romantic comedy staple – its relatability. Not to mention the sweet innocence of Jennifer Garnder’s character and the kind generosity of Mark Ruffalo’s.
3. Music & Lyrics (2007)
One of the thousands of reasons that I have a Jupiter-sized crush on Hugh Grant is his dry sense of humor. And that’s perfectly highlighted here with the unobvious pairing of him with Drew Barrymore. Although Grant’s sarcasm is what earned him my heart, the ending of the movie where he writes and performs a song about Barrymore’s character is what landed this movie on this list.
4. A Cinderella Story (2004)
I am going to be 100% truthful here and say that not only is this one of my favorite romantic comedies, it is one of everybody’s favorite romantic comedies. I have not met a singular person that doesn’t grin from ear to ear whenever I bring up that I watch this movie monthly. We all relate to our childhood (and adulthood) crush of Chad Michael Murray, and we all relate to the fact that Hillary Duff was one of the only Disney child stars not to grow up into something criminal or weird.
5. Letters to Juliet (2010)
The reason that I love this movie is that whenever I watch it, all of the characters make my heart swell. From the grandmother seeking out the ending to her love story that started over 50 years ago to her grandson finally declaring his love after trying to deny it for a majority of the movie.
Not to mention that the idea of women all around the world gathering in a singular location and writing out their deepest depressions to “Juliet Capulet”, and actually receiving a response in the mail later is the most wholesome ideal to me.
6. Leap Year (2010)
This movie is one that I came to love very recently. I was casually perusing the limited movie lists of Netflix when I stumbled upon this movie starring one of my favorite actresses, Amy Adams. And I debated to myself if I wanted to gamble two hours of my life away for this new movie or if I wanted to play it safe and watch Grease for the 374th time.
Luckily I decided to live on the edge that day and found one of my romantic comedy staples. It takes place in Ireland and all of the scenery is absolutely breath taking, and their romantic adventure is one of my favorite kinds; where the couple starts out hating each other and then manages to find the best in each other.
7. She’s The Man (2006)
How could a movie go wrong with Amanda Bynes and Channing Tatum in it? Trick question because it absolutely cannot. My best friend in high school was the one who introduced me to this classic and I instantly fell in love with the concept of Amanda Bynes transforming herself into her brother in order to live out her dream of playing soccer.
Not to mention that the movie ends with everybody finding out Bynes is a girl in the middle of the biggest rivalry game, but the coach sticks up for her by saying “We don’t discriminate based on gender.” My inner feminist screamed for this line, and my outer feminist actually did scream out loud.
8. 2 Weeks Notice (2002)
As I have said before, I love Hugh Grant and I worship Sandra Bullock. Therefore, this movie is a complete no-brainer for me. I knew immediately when I watched the first 20 seconds of this movie that I was going to relish in every single moment of sarcasm and awkwardness.
And trust me, it delivered. And per usual with Sandra Bullock movies, she transforms from a professional and less than fashionable looking girl into an elegant and sexy woman. AND I AM HERE FOR IT!
9. What A Girl Wants (2003)
Now this movie is not one of the rom coms that I have on a constant rotation. But anytime I see it playing on cable, you better believe that my fingers are hitting that play button faster than the speed of sound. One, I am a fan of anything that features Amanda Bynes before she went on a little mental side story (but she’s back and I am happier than ever).
Two, Colin Firth is one of my all-time favorite actors with his tension-freeing accent and his quick wit. And third, it takes place in the UK, which I have been dying to visit for a greater part of my child and adult life. Put all three of them together and it makes for a very happy Taylor.
10. Princess Diaries 2 (2004)
There is one major difference to me, but probably a minor one to you, between the first Princess Diaries and the second one. And his name is Chris Pine. I have 100% no shame in admitting that the beauty and the perfection that is Christopher Whitelaw Pine is what made me fall in love with this movie. Just his smooth body language and his inevitable love with Anne Hathaway makes me rub my hands together with a loopy grin on my face as if I was the one that matched them together in the first place.
11. John Tucker Must Die (2006)
Just as A Cinderella Story was a worldwide favorite, so is John Tucker Must Die. This was the movie of my adolescence and the movie of my friends’ adolescence. Jesse Metcalfe had to be everybody’s first crush with that gorgeous tan, soft eyes, and gut-wrenching smile. Not to forgot that a group full of girls trying to demean his playboy attitude is a movie I am always down for.
12. Another Cinderella Story (2008)
There is absolutely no shame emitting from me when I declare my love for this movie. I specifically remember that my initial reaction was that I was NOT going to like it as much as A Cinderella Story, and to this day I still know the choreography that Drew Seeley taught to the dance class. And one of my best friends, Bailey, will vouch for me when I say that I still jam to “Just That Girl” on the aux in my car.
13. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)
It took me about 19 years to watch this movie, and I am so mad that I didn’t take advantage of one of the movies in my favorite time period for romantic comedies: the 90’s. The 90’s and early 2000’s were the place to be for light-hearted rom coms.
And this movie does not disappoint in that category. What makes this movie for me is the bad boy himself, Heath Ledger. Any movie that he is in, I am already guaranteed to love it because of his incredible acting style and smile-inducing Australian accent.
14. 27 Dresses (2008)
You can ask my dad how many times I have watched this movie and his response will always be, “Way too many.” I am guilty of re-watching movies until everyone around me can recite the script along with me.
And how could I not re-watch it as the perfect bridesmaid finally finds herself down the path of becoming a bride? I am also convinced that no one can see James Marsden’s adorable ear-to-ear grin without mirroring it completely, and that is what this movie is full of.
15. Legally Blonde (2001)
Surprisingly, this is one of my Grandpa’s favorite movies, which still shocks me to this day. But then again, we are very similar and he must have passed on his amazing taste in movies to his beloved granddaughter.
Once again, the inner feminist and sorority girl in me heroically cheers whenever she watches this movie. From Reese Witherspoon muttering “I’ll show you how valuable Elle Woods can be,” underneath her breath to her becoming the valedictorian of a school no one thought she could get into, this movie is the perfect combination of supportive relationships and inspiration.
16. Easy A (2010)
This movie is one of the most iconic takes on The Scarlet Letter and I absolutely worship it. Not only did they cast the most perfect actress to play the lead role, Emma Stone, but all of the supporting characters were just as fitting for their roles as well as her. And no one can disagree by saying their favorite parts are when Stone is obsessively singing Pocketful of Sunshine and when the topic of adoption is brought up within the movie.
17. Clueless (1995)
This movie is a 90's classic and it still makes me smile whenever I see it. Even though the drama within the high school is beyond any level of drama that I have ever had, I still relate to it. And who can forget the fashion forwardness that is Cher? But also, seeing Paul Rudd as a young little thing just makes my heart soar because he is so adorable that you just want to package him up and put him in your pocket.
18. Sweet Home Alabama (2002)
This country classic is one that I and one of my favorite people, Maren, fawn over whenever it comes on. She can recite the lines even better than I can and even with that sassy country twang. And can you blame her? Along with the start of their adorable relationship with what lightning can do to sand, you can’t help but cheer for the unlikely couple as they slowly find themselves magnetized towards each other in small town Alabama.
19. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)
Now this movie is a complete staple within my family as well as my personal household. My mother and my aunt passed on their obsession with this Greek tale and John Corbett down onto me. Which means that I am currently the one who sits there and can tell you how any word can be tied back to the Greek language or that any possible problem in the world can be fixed with a little bit of Windex.
20. How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days (2003)
I will admit that not every part of this movie is amusing to me, especially the cringe-worthy parts where Kate Hudson is desperate for Matthew McConaughey to break up with her. But that incredibly romantic ending scene on the bridge as Matthew just finally catches up to her and calls her bluff is completely worth enduring the awkwardness. Not to mention those two little dimples of Matthew’s do make the movie much more enjoyable.
21. The Wedding Date (2004)
This simple classic is a fantastic way to end this cheesy and heart-warming list. It’s the typical fake love story where Debra Messing pays a random guy, Dermot Mulroney, to accompany her to her sister’s wedding.
But of course, her ex-boyfriend is going to be there and eventually deliver some news that might just bring down the wedding. And per usual, the drama is worth the endurance because the ending gives you what everybody watching a rom com wants: a confession of love and the perfect kiss.
Now I know that I am definitely missing some key romantic comedies within this list, but for the sake of my typing little fingers and your focused pupils, I managed to chop this list down to only 21 of my personal favorites. And if you will excuse me, writing this list has me craving a certain type of genre of film, and I must give into that need for the sake of my sanity.