30 Classic Romance Movies You MUST Watch ASAP
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30 Classic Romance Films You And Your Lover NEED To Check Off Your Must-Watch List

From the 30s to the 90s, the best movies to get you in your feels.

30 Classic Romance Films You And Your Lover NEED To Check Off Your Must-Watch List
Roman Holiday

In case you're tired of searching for new movies worth watching, consider going back in time for date night and watching a romance classic (or 30).

From black and white films to colorful '90s chick flicks (many of which I've watched alone or with significant others), the list below features romantic thrillers, rom-coms, historical romance, or just classic romantic stories for any given decade, here is a list of movies you need to add to your must-watch list ASAP.

1. "Clueless" (1995)

This story mainly focuses on a rich, ditzy, popular girl living in California at a snobby high school. Many believe her to be mindless and money at her fingertips but as time goes on she shows her real potential while developing a relationship with her crush. The second movie also is good and continues the story after she is accepted into college.

2. "Ghost" (1990)

I haven't personally watched this movie but I have heard good things about it.

3. "When Harry Met Sally" (1989)

I haven't personally seen this movie either but I heard it was good.

4. "The Princess Bride" (1987)

This movie is sort of a classic story, but it is a simple adventure story to save a princess that is read to a boy by his grandfather. This movie doesn't take itself too seriously which is what makes it so charming to watch.

5. "Sixteen Candles" (1984)

This story involves a love triangle between the main girl (a sophomore in high school), her crush (a senior), and a freshman that has a crush on her. She is turning 16 right before her older sister's wedding which makes her upset. This leads to some misunderstandings and comedic banter between the three main characters and other people in their lives.

6. "Can't Buy Me Love" (1987)

This romance has a bit of a slice of life to it as we observe a boy who has a crush on a popular girl at his high school. He feels he isn't in her league, but one day gets a chance to go on a date with her by bribing her when she ruins her mother's expensive dress. While being her boyfriend, he starts to become more and more popular, which starts to get to his head.

7. "Grease" (1978)

This musical could have been mistaken for a Disney production because it is so good. The story is playful as well as dynamic. If you haven't seen this 70s classic romanic comedy musical, go see it.

8. "Hello Dolly!" (1969)

This play focuses on several characters, mainly Dolly who is a widow who spends her time playing matchmaker in New York City.

9. "The Graduate" (1967)

Personally I have yet to see this movie, but from what I've heard about its reputation, it is a good movie.

10. "Doctor Zhivago" (1965)

This drama romance takes place during several moments in history starting from World War I all the way until the Russian Civil War. The main character is a KGB officer recounting the story of his father to a woman who he believes to be related to him.

11. "The Sound Of Music" (1965)

If you have not yet seen this movie, it is a classic musical right next to "West Side Story."

12. "Cleopatra" (1963)

A more historical fiction based movie centers around the famous Queen of Egypt, Cleopatra, and her relationships between Julius Ceasar and Marc Antony. If you wish to learn a little ancient history and about the very real romances that happened during one this historic period, this is the movie to watch with one of my favorite actresses.

13. "West Side Story" (1961)

As we all know the story of Romeo and Juliet, we know the classic musical adaptation of this story. This movie is a classic for reasons such as its choreography, music, and acting/staging. It is a masterpiece to experience and enjoys with your S.O.

14. "Breakfast At Tiffany's" (1961)

This is a classy, iconic movie due to the main actress's image in this particular film. Her elegant demeanor makes it seem like she came from a rich and well off family, however, as a writer who lives downstairs from her starts to notice certain things about her, he starts to think that she might not be what she seems.

15. "North by Northwest" (1959)

Another Hitchcock movie that leaves you in suspense. A man who is mistaken for a person he is not, gets kidnapped, almost gets murdered and becomes a fugitive for the murder of a man he tries to clear him of his assumed identity. There is a lot to unpack with this movie and this has some romance as well mixed in with all the thrills.

16. "Some Like it Hot" (1959)

This romantic comedy takes place during the prohibition era in Chicago where two men, one a saxophone player, work at a speakeasy when it gets raided by the police. On their way out to escape the city, they witness a gang shooting and try to disguise themselves in drag. The two make it to Miami and woo some girls.

17. "Vertigo" (1958)

Not so much a romance, but has intense drama and thrill that always comes with a Hitchcock movie. The master of thrillers gives us a detective who has vertigo and runs into a mysterious woman that may be connected to a murder he is trying to solve.

18. "Guys And Dolls" (1955)

This romantic comedy actually focuses on two couples, however, it doesn't start out that way. One of the guys makes a bet with the other that he won't fall in love with a certain girl but instead will make her fall in love with him. The bet is made and things don't go the way they were expected to.

19. "Sabrina" (1954)

This romance is a love triangle between two men and a girl named Sabrina (this was the movie my parents named me after). However, one of the men is too old for Sabrina but she ends up falling for him.

20. "Roman Holiday" (1953)

This movie is a cute romance that takes place all in one day. A royal princess escapes from the palace for one day with a reporter that wants to take advantage of the naive princess. But after spending more and more time together, the reporter finds himself as well as her developing strong feelings for one another.

21. "Singin' In The Rain" (1952)

The song "I'm singing in the rain" originated from this movie and has been referenced in movies such as "A Clockwork Orange" (don't watch "A Clockwork Orange" if you don't want this song to be ruined forever btw). It is a timeless classic mostly due to the amazing choreography and dancing done by all three main characters, especially Gene Kelly (who was the second-best dancer at the time to Fred Astaire).

22. "The African Queen" (1951)

This movie takes place in Africa during World War I with a brother and sister traveling on a boat called the African Queen to German East Africa. However, while they are being attacked by German soldiers, the brother ends up being caught in the fight and passes away leaving his sister and a gruff mechanic to find a way out of the enemy territory.

23. "Born Yesterday" (1950)

This is another cute romance, but the main lady of the film starts off as a clueless and clumsy woman, (or so many think) who is engaged to a dismissive boyfriend that is urged to marry her. Her boyfriend hires a journalist to try and educate her on manners. As the main lady and the journalist spend more time together it is discovered that both of them can learn from one another about a thing or two and that appearances can be deceiving.

24. "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir" (1947)

This romance is an odd one since it's between a woman who just moved into an old house by the sea and a ghost captain that continues to haunt it. The captain tries to scare her off his property, but they both end up developing feelings for one another that results in some bittersweet moments.

25. "Beauty And The Beast" (1946)

There is an original French version of the classic story of Beauty and the Beast. If you both are willing to read subtitles, this movie is a masterpiece of film to watch and still holds up after so many years. You might even find that the ending is different from what we know from our current versions of this story.

26. "The Big Sleep" (1946)

This is a film noir type of romance and funny enough, the original story does not really have any romance, but Hollywood at the time liked to change the story to fit a narrative. But whether or not there is romance in the story or not, this is a gripping thriller.

27. "Casablanca" (1942)

This is one of the best all-time romance movies. Packed with tension and drama, this black and white film contains all the essentials to call it an all-time classic and a timeless tale of two ex-lovers meeting in a bar in Morocco during World War II.

28. "The Philadelphia Story" (1940)

If you like the two leads from Bringing Up Baby, they also were in this romance film. This one is about a woman that has divorced her husband because he drank too much and runs into the male lead that is going to cover her wedding. Her father's past infidelity threatens to ruin her rich family's reputation and allows for the main male lead and his friend to cover the wedding, which leads to a lot of dramatic turmoil as well as chemistry.

29. "Gone With the Wind" (1939)

Based on the novel and just as good as the novel, this story is also an ultimate timeless classic romance that has lasted for ages and for good reason. During the time of slavery and the civil unrest of our nation, this romance has complex dilemmas while portraying the environment and social norms of the time of the American Civil War.

30. "Bringing Up Baby" (1938)

This romance is slightly different since the main male lead is already engaged to marry the daughter of a rich family that is donating to his museum. He meets the lead lady on a golf course and the two are complete opposites; she is a free-spirited and somewhat scattered brained woman while he is a composed and logical paleontologist. And somehow a leopard named Baby ends up in the midst of this comedic banter between the two leads.

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