Romantic comedies aren’t for everyone, but when in you’re relationship with someone who can’t get enough, finding a middle ground can be challenging. Let’s be honest; we all have that one favorite. From classics like When Harry Met Sally to more recent gems like Long Shot, after much deliberation and careful thought, we’ve come up with the ultimate list of romantic comedies that women love and men ACTUALLY enjoy watching.
Now, before we dive in, we’d like to point out that we omitted all of Judd Apatow and Adam Sandler’s movies, as well as The Princess Bride. We wanted to avoid the same old same old and felt it was time to give shout outs to a few lesser-known gems that often get overlooked. With that in mind, here are 10 romantic comedies men ACTUALLY enjoy.
10. Overboard (1987)
Directed by Garry Marshall (Pretty Women, Runaway Bride) and starring real-life couple Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn, Overboard tells the story of a pretentious heiress named Joanna Stayton (Hawn) who hires carpenter Dean Proffitt to build a giant wardrobe for her yacht and then refuses to pay him for his work. Sometime later, Joanna falls off the yacht and suffers amnesia, so Dean convinces her she’s his wife and the mother to his four kids. Although that might sound creepy and feel eerily similar to that of a horror film, if you have yet to see the 1987 rom-com and can locate a copy, it has our seal of approval.
You may feel inclined to watch the 2018 remake starring Eugenio Derbez and Anna Faris, but we’d highly recommend against it. The original film was a more significant disappointment at the box office. Still, unlike the remake, the original is now regarded as a cult classic, and it stars two of Hollywood’s most prolific actors of all time.
9. Blast from the Past (1999)
After spending 35 years living in a fallout shelter with his parents, Adam Webber (Frasier) is forced to enter the real world for the first time to collect supplies and attempt to find a wife. While on the surface, Adam meets Eve Rustikoff (Alica Silverstone), a suspicious and caring woman who agrees to help Adam find a nice, ‘non-mutant’ woman to marry. As time passes, Eve and Adam begin to fall for each, but the fear of the unknown has them both a little hesitant.
I think we can all agree more Brendan Frasier is a good thing, and although Blast From the Past doesn’t hold a candle to classics like The Mummy and Encino Man, the ’90s rom-com has enough charm and humor to hold it’s own. Oh, and did we forget to mention the film also stars Christopher Walken, Dave Foley, and Nathan Fillion? Enough said.
8. Hercules (1997)
Disney’s Hercules might not seem like an obvious choice, being an animated adventure and all, but the plot is quite romantic. If you think about it, boy meets girl, boy tries to save girl, girl doesn’t need saving, and then boy and girl eventually fall in love. Sound familiar? Hercules and Megara’s love story is just as romantic and cheesy as any other on the list, maybe more.
Released in 1997, Hercules features one of Disney’s most underrated voice ensemble casts in Tate Donovan, Danny DeVito, Susan Egan, James Woods, and Rip Torn. If you or your significant other enjoy watching animated movies, Hercules is funny, filled with pop culture references, and features some awe-inspiring animation, especially for the time.
7. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Eternal Sunshine Of the Spotless Mind (2004) is one of the rare movies that every human on the planet should be allowed to watch. It’s a movie that, to quote one very poignant review, “shows us who we are now and who we’re likely, for better or worse, forever to be.” Routinely cited as one of the greatest films ever made, this incredibly touching story of love and loss takes a story rooted firmly in science fiction (in the near future, erasing memories is possible and is often used to remove the pain of a breakup) and turns it into an incredibly human tale about how it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. A simple message wrapped up in a beautiful screenplay by the master himself (Charlie Kaufman), with a star-studded ensemble cast who all give incredible performances (this is Jim Carrey’s dramatic legacy, right here), Eternal Sunshine Of the Spotless Mind is the ultimate meditation on romance in the 21st (and beyond?) century.
6. Yesterday (2019)
Starring newcomer Himesh Patel and Lily James (Baby Driver, Downtown Abbey), Yesterday is an incredibly unique and charming story of Jack Malik (Patel), a struggling singer-songwriter who wakes up after a freak accident to discover The Beatles never existed, and only he remembers who they were. Before you know it, Jack begins to take credit for the band’s music, becoming famous practically overnight. As his fame continues to grow, Jack’s relationship with his best friend and love of his life, Ellie Appleton (James), slowly begins to crumble, forcing the singer-songwriter to decide what he wants more, the girl or fame.
Directed by Danny Boyle and released in the summer of 2019, Yesterday became a box office hit, grossing $151.3 million against a $26 million budget. Critics praised the film for its originality, performances, and tone, but felt they could have taken the idea a little further.
5. Fever Pitch (2005)
Fever Pitch tells the story of Ben Wrightman (Jimmy Fallon), a young teacher and avid Boston Red Sox fan who begins dating businesswoman Lindsay Meeks (Drew Barrymore). The relationship flourishes at first, but as the baseball season begins, Lindsay soon learns that Ben’s obsession with the Red Sox goes far beyond anything she could have imagined.
Directed by the Farrell brothers and released in 2005, Fever Pitch is a remake of the 1997 film of the same name starring Colin Firth and is loosely based on Nick Hornby’s memoir, Fever Pitch: A Fan’s Life. The remake is by no means the excellent movie, but the on-screen chemistry between Barrymore and Fallon is undeniable and more than makes up for the film’s shortcomings.
4. The Big Sick (2017)
The Big Sick is a smart, heartfelt, and refreshing funny rom-com written by Kumail Nanjiani and his wife Emily V. Gordon. The film is based on a fictionalized version of the couple’s relationship and tells the touching story of a Pakistan-born comedian, played by Kumail, who falls madly in love with a grad student (Zoe Kazan). As the couple’s bond intensifies, their cultural differences begin to create a rift between the seemingly happy couple. After Emily falls ill to a mysterious illness, Nanjiani must is forced to face his true feelings.
The Oscar-nominated romantic comedy also stars Holly Hunter, Ray Romano, Adeel Akhtar, and Anupam Kher. Despite the film’s limited theatrical release, The Big Sick still managed to pull in $56 million against a $5 million budget, becoming the highest-grossing independent film of 2017.
3. Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Perhaps the most critically acclaimed of the films on this list, Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead, qualifies due to its overwhelming charm and unlimited rewatchability. Seriously, we cannot emphasize how much better this film gets with repeated viewings. Written by Wright and star Simon Pegg and featuring Nick Frost, Kate Ashfield, and Bill Nighy, Shaun of the Dead follows Pegg’s Shaun as he attempts to win back his girlfriend Liz (Ashfield) during the fledgling stages of a zombie apocalypse.
The first “zomromcom” (zombie romantic comedy), Shaun of the Dead manages to oscillate between startling originality and repeated homages to the great zombie films of old, specifically those of George Romero, making it a treat for newcomers and fans of the horror genre. The first feature film collaboration between Wright, Pegg, and Frost (the others are just as enjoyable as this movie), Shaun of the Dead is a film destined to wind up as both a cult classic and a go-to movie for those folks desperate for a little gore with their laughs as they wind down after a long week.
2. Long Shot (2019)
The thought of Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron playing love interests might seem far-fetched at first, that we know, but after watching Long Shot, we couldn’t be more convinced that maybe opposites do attract. The film tells the romantic story of Fred Flarsky (Rogen), a struggling journalist who is reunited with his former babysitter, now the U.S. Secretary of State, Charlotte Field (Theron). The chemistry between the two stars is so believable it almost doesn’t make sense. The film does a beautiful job balancing Theron’s god-given and Oscar-winning talent with Rogen’s silly and awkwardly witty brand of humor.
Long Shot might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you’re looking for a new to shink your teeth into, you could do a lot worse than this surprisingly layered and entertaining rom-com. The film also stars O’Shea Jackson Jr., Andy Serkis, June Diane Raphael, Bob Odenkirk, and Alexander Skarsgård.
1. When Harry Met Sally (1989)
When Harry Met Sally might be the most clique rom-com of the group, and we very well could have given its spot to a less familiar rom-com. Still, after watching the movies recently, we were reminded that as far as the genre is concerned When Harry Met Sally is a masterpiece. Directed by Rob Reiner and starring Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal, When Harry Met Sally is an outstandingly witty and funny movie that raises the question, “Can men and women ever just be friends?”
After sharing an 18-hour drive from Chicago to New York City, Harry Burns (Crystal) and Sally Albright (Ryan) go their separate ways only to bump into each other during various chance encounters. The pair eventually becomes close friends and begin to fear if sex will ruin their friendship.