Romantic comedies have bad reputations, but that doesn't mean we don't like to enjoy them from time to time. We crave the cheesy plot lines and corny lines. They give us (most times) unrealistic expectations about love and life, but these movies are more than chick flicks. The film industry may exploit the classic scenarios one too many times, but these "chick flicks" are getting better as time goes on and aren't just for "chicks".

After watching a handful of romantic comedies, it isn't difficult to see the common characteristics of the main characters. One character changes the other. One character realizes the obstacle that has always kept them from getting what or who they want. And there's usually a happy ending that was predictable like a Hallmark movie. But then there are some that truly feel real, that connect with you, that force a different perspective. A movie that changes your mind and you feel like you're living in a new world than the one you thought you knew before you had watched that film.

No longer are romantic comedies just about the quirky romances; it's about the people, it's about the journey, it's about the discoveries. We find more of ourselves in the characters of these rom-coms now since they don't hold the majority of the focus on the typical, classic, unrealistic romances. The women in them are becoming better represented. No more fragile girls that just need a man to feel complete. No more "Mr. Dreamy". These films are looking at realness now; the closer these films portray realistic approaches to love and relationships the more they are praised and enjoyed. It's all about the little details, the small changes, that make certain romantic comedies more than typical.

The female characters portrayed in these films are strong-willed, successful, intelligent, fully capable of independence, are unique and own who they are. They illustrate traits to be looked up to that are empowering and powerful. Woman are not fragile, weak, insecure, incomplete humans that rom-coms frequently have highlighted. Women are so much more than that and these films prove that.

With the not-so-typical scenarios in these films as well, these romantic comedies take a twist on the genre people should take more seriously. As an extremely influential genre for girls and boys to grow up watching, they set the expectations on what "love" is or can be or should be. A platform and medium that persuasive should portray reality and truth and empowerment. It's important for the entertainment we watch to reflect ideas of society and challenge the old ones and aspects that should change. We learn from others and if we continue to portray unhealthy relationships with unrealistic expectations that is what people will seek out, and we all deserve better than that, especially since there's more to reality than the classic plot lines suggest.

Here is a list of some must-watch romantic comedies to name a few that leave you thinking, catch you in the feels, that you can identify with, that brings a new light to the underrated genre.

-Notting Hill

-How To Be Single

-Dumplin'

-The Other Woman

-The Ugly Truth

-10 Things I Hate About You

-Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind

-27 Dresses

-The Proposal

-Definitely, Maybe

-Paper Towns

-When In Rome

-13 Going On 30

-How To Lose A Guy In Ten Days

-He's Just Not That Into You

-The Holiday

-My Big Fat Greek Wedding

-Pretty In Pink

-Mamma Mia

-Me Before You

-The Fault In Our Stars

-Never Been Kissed

-Sleepless In Seattle

-You've Got Mail

-50 First Dates

Of course, there is no perfect romantic comedy or perfect film or perfect love or perfect life, but if little specks of hope, of goodness, of realness, of whatever we are looking for we will have put together a close-to-perfect idea of love and life.

Not everyone appreciates romantic comedies, and the corny, typical ones are difficult to completely disregard as entertaining, but films that connect to its audience and can tie in realistic ideas, characters, expectations, and outcomes will have created a powerful, moving portrayal for many to enjoy.