Valentine’s Day — a 24-hour increment where everyone collectively decides to raid local stores for chocolates, greeting cards and flowers. Love songs get lovelier, romantic movies get more heartwarming and those who detest this annual cash-cow grow more bitter. In anticipation of the holiday, here’s a list of romantic comedies that are sure to soothe those of you who despise Feb. 14 and everything to do with it. This year’s V-Day may have come and gone, but for those of you who can still feel the love in the air, here are 10 flicks to keep you in the romantic spirit. There are serious requirements to watch these movies. First, you must assemble yourself in pajamas from head to toe. Second, acquire a tub of chocolate ice cream, popcorn and candy of your choice (I personally recommend Red Vines, but I digress). Finally, prepare yourself to laugh, cry and everything in between.
Bridget Jones’s Diary
This movie is undoubtedly guaranteed to make you publicly announce that you have officially fallen in love with Colin Firth. Other beneficial side effects: haphazardly grabbing a pen and journal in efforts to get to work on those (belated) New Year’s resolutions, finding yourself relating to Bridget more than you’d care to admit and speaking in a terrible British accent, because you can. The film follows Bridget as she keeps a diary chronicling her life experiences, particularly those pertaining to romance. The hyperpersonal nature of the concept allows for one to live inside her mind throughout the duration of the movie, which remains hilariously awkward.
10 Things I Hate About You
Relive your teen-angst phase with Kat Stratford as she bestows her witty remarks all over school. The classic late ‘90s high school experience sprinkled in with a young Joseph Gordon Levitt. “10 Things I Hate About You showcases Patrick Verona’s attempts to woo Kat, with a small catch: it’s a bet. Prepare yourself to swoon at their burgeoning romance, but not without the anxiety paired with waiting for the other shoe to drop.
What Women Want
Nick Marshall, a playboy marketing executive, feels threatened when his female colleague gets a promotion over him because of her ability to market to women. Then ensues a montage where Nick attempts to understand products marketed to women by using them. In true rom-com fashion, you must suspend your disbelief to watch what happens next: he can hear every thought that runs through a woman’s head. Utterly chaotic and humorous, “What Women Want” is sure to crack you up.
13 Going on 30
Jennifer Garner and Mark Ruffalo star opposite each other in this somewhat fantastical movie. Have you ever wished that things would get better as you got older? “13 Going on 30” applies this question to the life of 13-year-old Jenna Rink. She’s got her dream house and dream job at the age of 30, but there’s still something she’s missing out on. Be sure to keep a box of tissues within arm’s length, you know, as a preventative measure.
Crazy; Stupid; Love.
This movie is best if you go into it blind, so I’ll just mention some members of the cast as an attempt to reel you in. Steve Carell. Emma Stone. Ryan Gosling. Hopefully, these names carry some weight in your mind. If not, “Crazy; Stupid; Love.” is a tornado of emotions in the best way possible: it truly meets the rom-com quota of being able to make you laugh and cry at the same time. Watch it, and don’t you dare spoil it for yourself.
Two Weeks Notice
Hugh Grant, rom-com extraordinaire, makes his second appearance on this list; he plays the male lead alongside Sandra Bullock. Lucy, a lawyer focused on preserving buildings and saving the environment, unhappily takes a job working for George, a real estate developer who could care less about the environment. The movie features a scene that we all attempt to recreate when we’re feeling down, where Lucy is inhaling an unbelievable amount of Chinese takeout. Bonus points if you actually have Chinese takeout next to you.
Nobody puts Baby in a corner! Okay, I admit that this one isn’t exactly a rom-com, but I simply had to put it on the list. It’s a certifiable classic, present in about a million different pop culture references — and for good reason. If Jessica Day from “New Girl” insists on watching it repeatedly, what else do you need to know? All I ask is that you don’t attempt the iconic lift at home; from personal experience, I can attest that it will not succeed.
When Harry Met Sally
A perfect enemies-to-lovers slow burn, from beginning to end. This story takes place over the course of multiple years and culminates in arguably one of the best rom-com speeches of all time. Harry and Sally meet on a road trip from the University of Chicago to New York. It’s all very serendipitous, which allows for those who are watching to remain hopeful — something everyone needs.
Again, I wouldn’t say that “Legally Blonde” is 100% a rom-com, but it definitely has rom-com elements, which is good enough for me. Despite being one of the most iconically quotable movies of all time (“What, like it’s hard?”), it’s also deeply empowering: a consistent reminder that you can do anything you put your mind to. Even acing the LSAT, which is an intimidating prospect to most people.
It’s one of those star-studded movies that is still unbelievably fun. It follows multiple people throughout Valentine’s Day and explores what the day entails for them or their relationship. Patrick Dempsey and Eric Dane (McDreamy and McSteamy) are both in the film — a cheeky reference for those of us who are “Grey’s Anatomy” fans. Other fun inclusions: Taylor Swift and Taylor Lautner, Julia Roberts, Bradley Cooper, Ashton Kutcher and more!
Happy endings all around! This concludes my catalog of rom-coms that are sure to relinquish your hatred of the holiday. I can only hope that you enjoy them as much as I do!