Through good dates and bad, from meet-cutes to grand gestures and with show-stopping kisses thrown in for good measure, romantic movies have a certain magic all their own. (After all, who doesn’t love a good wedding scene?)
Whether you believe in true love or just love a good laugh, the best romantic comedies are there to provide a warm fuzzy world in which the couple always gets together at the end and, of course, there's a happy ending.
The genre has plenty to offer, but these are our favourites: the best rom-coms, according to Edmonton Public Library staffers.
1. You’ve Got Mail (1998)
The owner of a struggling bookshop begins an unintentional (and anonymous) online romance with the man whose chain of book stores is running her out of business.
You’ve Got Mail is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “Honestly one of the sweetest, funniest and most enjoyable romantic comedies I've ever watched and I'm usually not a big fan of the genre.” — Dorothy Hamilton, Library Assistant at Woodcroft
2. Crazy, Stupid Love (2011)
This movie charmingly tells several love stories at once. At the centre of it all is a middle-aged dad whose life unravels when his wife asks for a divorce. Taking the advice of a younger newfound friend, he learns how to thrive in the dating market. But ultimately, he has to decide: does he want to?
Crazy, Stupid Love is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “Do you enjoy movies with smart dialogue, hilarious misunderstandings and surprise endings? What about movies with passionate love, lasting love and unrequited love? Yeah, I like those movies too.” — Tangraya Coupland, Library Assistant at Woodcroft
3. The Princess Bride (1987)
Based on a novel of the same name, this witty fairy tale tells the story of a farmhand who, with the help of friends found along the way, must rescue his true love from an odious prince.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “So many classic lines come from this film and there are so many classic scenes referenced in so many other films. A must see for everybody, at least once in a lifetime.” — Andrea Thompson-Dick, Mobile Library Assistant at Jasper Place
4. Notting Hill (1999)
A chance meeting between a quiet London bookstore owner and an American actress turns into a surprising romance. But can they make it last?
Notting Hill is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “Bumbling bookshop owner meets glamorous movie star. Add in a mix of awkward dinner parties, horrendous roommates and the charming London neighbourhood of Notting Hill and you pretty much have the perfect rom-com!” — Kelly Higgins, Library Assistant at Lois Hole
5.The Big Sick (2017)
A Pakistan-born stand-up comic meets an American graduate student at one of his shows and—despite worries about what his traditional Muslim parents will think—the two start a relationship. But when she contracts an illness that leaves her in a coma, things get complicated.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “I loved The Big Sick. It was unexpected and not your average Hollywood romantic comedy.” — Ann Marie Gallant, Mobile Library Assistant at Woodcroft
6. Sleepless in Seattle (1993)
Following the death of his wife, a man’s son tries to find love for him on a talk radio show. He begrudgingly discusses his feelings on the air, where, unbeknownst to him, an engaged woman in Baltimore is tuning in and falling hard for the thoughtful widower.
Sleepless in Seattle is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “I'm a huge Nora Ephron fan. Her stories speak to a generation when people still went on dates.” — Jason Moccasin, Library Assistant at Enterprise Square
7. Me Before You (2016)
A small-town woman is hired as the caretaker for a wealthy Londoner paralyzed from an accident several years earlier. As her cheerful attitude begins to shift his cynical outlook, the two begin an unexpected romance.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “I cried my eyes out when I read this book (so much so that the bus driver asked if I was okay, so that was embarrassing). The MOVIE was also SO GOOD.” — Marina Fernandes, Communications Coordinator
8. Bollywood Hollywood (2002)
After his white pop-star fiancée dies in a strange accident, an Indian man’s mother insists he find a new potential mate right away—preferably a Hindi one. With few prospects on the horizon, he hatches a scheme to pass an escort off as his future bride. What he doesn’t anticipate is the possibility of falling for her for real.
Bollywood Hollywood is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “Great music, great characters and a fun story. Plus, it’s Canadian!” — Vanessa Sztym, Library Assistant at epl2go
9. Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994)
Seemingly unlucky in love, a loveable Englishman meets an American woman at a wedding. Her return to the U.S. seems to be the end of things… until they cross paths again at another wedding and another…
Four Weddings and a Funeral is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “One of my all-time favourites.” — Karen Miller, Library Assistant at Whitemud Crossing
10. Roman Holiday (1953)
Tired of her obligations, a touring princess runs away for a night in Rome. Suffering from the delayed effect of a sedative, she falls asleep on a park bench, where she’s found by an American journalist. When he realizes who he’s stumbled upon, he sets his sights on an exclusive interview, but sparks soon start flying.
Roman Holiday is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “Very romantic and funny. Lovelovelove it!” — Nataliaya Vanovska, Library Assistant at Londonderry
11. Sing Street (2016)
With the hope of impressing his crush, an aspiring model, a teenager in 1980s Dublin invites her to star in his band’s music videos. The only flaw in his plan? He isn’t in a band. At least not yet…
EPL Staff Recommendation: “Great music, wonderful Irish culture and lots of laughs.” — Gerry O’Riordan, Library Services Coordinator at Mill Woods
12. Hope Floats (1998)
Humiliated on a live talk show when her husband confesses his infidelity, a woman flees to her hometown with her daughter. There, she contends with former friends all-too-happy to see her down—all except for one.
Hope Floats is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “My guilty pleasure is Hope Floats. The sweet cowboy, catty high school friends, cute kids and eccentric grandparents have me laughing and crying every time.” — Megan Ginther, Library Assistant at epl2go
13. It’s Kind of a Funny Story (2010)
When a stressed-out 16-year-old checks himself into a mental health clinic, he doesn’t expect to find a mentor and potential new romance.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “One of my all-time favourite movies, which talks about mental health and is a great romance!” — Liam Alabiso-Cahill, Student Page at Sprucewood
14. Ever After: A Cinderella Story (1998)
This clever retelling of the classic fairy tale treats the story as historical fiction. Set in Renaissance-era France, Ever After is a modern interpretation featuring a fierce and independent Cinderella.
Ever After is available from the Edmonton Public Library as a DVD.
EPL Staff Recommendation: “I love Ever After because she isn’t a wimpy Cinderella.” — Tina Thomas, Executive Director of Strategy and Innovation
Whether you're looking for the best modern rom-coms or a fairy tale romance, EPL has a range of romantic comedies to suit every taste.