Below are five movies that should be able to appease both those who typically like romantic movies, as well as those who don’t. No matter your status, identity, or gender, you may be a female who hates so-called “cheesy” Lifetime movies, a guy who really digs the Bourne movies, or you could be into witty indie flicks. No matter what you’re into, you’ll find something redeemable, and dare I say it, worthwhile here. And if you don’t, comment (and tell me why)! Great romantic movies have substance and something we can all get into, whether we admit it or not. So want to see a romantic movie that’s also a great movie? Take your pick of the five on my list:
When Harry Met Sally
Rob Reiner’s classic film is still as good today as it was when it was released in 1989. Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal aren’t exactly the couple of the century but in this film they really light up the screen. Crystal in particular. The film is based on Reiner’s life after going from being married to single again, many years later. It’s a keenly insightful film that for today’s world might be considered a bit binary when it comes to gender politics, like the line in which Crystal’s character tells Meg she’s “high maintenance.” Nevertheless, the craft of the film cannot be denied.
Pretty Woman was originally written as a dark comedy about prostitution, however, the director Gary Marshall had the actors do ample improvisation during the shoot (the famous “necklace box scene” is one of these). He then cobbled together numerous outtakes and BTS (behind the scenes) shots to make a completely different kind of movie. The film’s energy and tone are at least two reasons for the classic’s enduring appeal.
Probably more comedy than romance Knocked Up, written and directed by Judd Apatow, centers on a slacker and a media powerhouse who have a one-night stand, get pregnant, then decide to keep the baby. It’s a film that has a biting wit, well-planned story, and an unconventional lead. Apatow wrote it for Seth Rogan because he considered him the antithesis of the average leading man. Apatow reportedly said to himself, “No one is going to cast this dude as the lead. I should cast him as the lead.” Needless to say, it worked out great for everyone involved.
500 Days of Summer
The ultimate modern falling in love movie, 500 Days of Summer, directed by Marc Webb, was basically a classic the moment it was released. Starring Joseph Gordon Levitt and Zooey Deschanel, the film’s nonlinear narrative structure really does serve the story well and makes the film particularly memorable. The film’s style, well-written characters, beautiful cinematography and inventive use of music create a world which invites repeat viewings.
Set aside any preconceived notions or preconceptions you have about it, Love Actually is A Great Movie. The characters are all really well-defined, their stories all build to a satisfying climax, and it’s just really well-crafted and well-executed. Written and directed by Tony Curtis, ultimately this film is about more than romance, it’s about how it takes all types to make the world turn.
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