Happy Valentine's Day! Feeling romantic? Great, we've got some ideas for the perfect cosy movie night with your special someone. Get the popcorn ready and keep some tissues handy!
We will absolutely not hear anyone use the term 'guilty pleasure' here. Romcoms are some of the biggest and most popular movies for a reason, and there's no need to be snobby about them.
But like me, you may have been through all of the classics. I'm constantly searching for new movies in the genre and lesser-known gems on the best streaming services. Here, instead, are 5 romcoms you probably haven't seen.
A film I will never stop championing, Adventureland is a brilliantly relateable story laced with nostalgia for a period when I wasn't even alive. Stuck working a dead-end summer job at an amusement park in the 80s, college graduate James (Jesse Eisenberg) falls for Em (Kristen Stewart).
Cue all the awkwardness and trappings of young love, and a wrench thrown in the works by a mechanic (Ryan Reynolds no less). This is a lovely little slice of life story that makes me smile everytime I rewatch.
The Big Sick
- Streaming on: Amazon Prime Video
Based on a true story of Kumail Nanjiani and his wife Emily, this movie stars Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan as a budding couple who have been on a couple of dates and called it quits. When Emily is hospitalised however, pressure falls on Kumail as the nearest 'next of kin' to him to place her in a medically induced coma.
While Emily is battling for her life, Kumail struggles to battle his fight for a career in comedy, Emily's frosty parents and his own family issues in what is understandably a frought situation.
This may not sound like a romcom but it is terrfically funny at times, and you know it has a happy ending - the two characters are married in real life!
Barbie director Greta Gerwig stars (and co-writes) as the title character in this whip smart Noah Baumbach (her now husband) romcom. I say romcom, but for me this is really more of a film about learning to love yourself.
When her college best friend decides to move in with her long term boyfriend, 27 year old aspiring dancer Frances realises that she's at a real crossroads in her life. She doesn't even have a credit card, declaring herself "not grown up yet". If you've seen any of Baumbach's movies you'll know that they ooze style and that his dialogue is the best out there, and that's once more the case here.
- Streaming on: Netflix
Pretty much guaranteed to make you cry, Blue Jay is a bit more 'rom' than 'com' but this is a super delicate movie that came out of nowhere and blew me away. Mark Duplass and Sarah Paulson are practically the only characters on screen in a story that I think would work equally as well in a play.
Old sweethearts who stumble back into each other's lives with a chance encounter in the supermarket, Jim and Amanda take a walk down memory lane together through the town they grew up in. Their connection is obvious and they have a real spark together, so why didn't it work out?
As well as being a visual delight, the soundtrack to this movie is absolutey essential and utterly heartbreaking in equal measure.
The Map of Tiny Perfect Things
- Streaming on: Amazon Prime Video
I could equally have put another Prime Video time-loop romcom here, with the excellent Palm Springs but I feel like The Map of Tiny Perfect Things is more of a hidden gem, and just a tad more romantic than the Andy Samberg flick.
Kathryn Newton and Kyle Allen are superb in the lead roles as two teens stuck in a time loop for unknown reasons decide to join forces to capture all of the tiny perfect moments in the world and soon bond over a unique shared experience. Genuinely very funny, but watch out for an emotional semi-truck at the midpoint.