Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or just another day spent with your loved one, there’s no better way to end the night than by watching a bit of Netflix and chilling.
Netflix has dozens of romantic comedies just waiting for people like you to sit down and tune in when the mood takes you. But which ones should you actually watch? If you want to end the night well, the worst thing you can do is pick a terrible title.
Want something lighthearted and happy? Or maybe you’d prefer one that’s more serious, realistic, and dramatic? Whichever side of the fence you’re on, Netflix can and will deliver.
1. Stardust (2007)
IMDb: 7.7 | RT: 76%
Often called a spiritual successor to cult-classic The Princess Bride, Stardust is a wild and crazy fantasy adventure that’s exceptional for its well-realized setting and wonderful characters. But at its very core, Stardust is a love story.
Starring Charlie Cox, Claire Danes, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Robert De Niro, the performances are wonderful all around — and that comes on top of witty dialogue and a self-awareness of its own genre that keeps it from taking itself too seriously.
There’s so much to love about this film, most of all that it’s the kind of film you can happily watch with your family.
2. Love Actually (2003) [No Longer Available]
IMDb: 7.6 | RT: 63%
Love Actually is the quintessential romantic comedy, comprised of an ensemble cast that spans 10 different plotlines that somehow manage to come together and tie up into a satisfying ending in just over two hours.
What I love about this film is how it touches on the many different kinds and phases of love: love may not always end happily, but when it does, it’s the sweetest part of life. For maximum enjoyment, treat this film like a summer blockbuster: take it for what it is and don’t think about it too hard.
3. Beauty and the Beast (2017)
IMDb: 7.3 | RT: 71%
Did Beauty and the Beast really need a remake? Not really. But all things considered, this one was nowhere near as terrible as it could have been. It brought new life to an old tale yet still managed to stay faithful to the original story.
My only recommendation is to set aside any expectation of the film tickling your nostalgia bone. If you’re going to spend the entire two-hour runtime comparing it to the original, you may as well save yourself the headache and skip it altogether.
4. Definitely, Maybe (2008)
IMDb: 7.2 | RT: 71%
Definitely, Maybe sets itself apart from other lesser rom-coms with its captivating cast and commitment to character-driven drama. The story centers on a young daughter who incessantly asks her father how he ended up with her mother, who are in the process of divorcing.
It’s far from perfect, mind you, but the strong performances from Ryan Reynolds and Abigail Breslin will carry you along and keep you invested. Here’s a film with lots of heart, and at the end of the day, isn’t that all that matters in matters of love?
5. Wedding Crashers (2005)
IMDb: 7.0 | RT: 75%
In Wedding Crashers, a womanizer falls in love and seeks to reform his womanizing ways. It may not be the most original plot, but it’s executed well and results in a remarkably memorable film. Not to mention the film is downright hilarious!
Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson have incredible chemistry as starring buddies and they’re a pleasure to watch. Just note that Wedding Crashers earns its R rating with copious amounts of crude, vulgar, and raunchy humor. This is no family-friendly film.
6. Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001)
IMDb: 6.7 | RT: 81%
For some reason, Bridget Jones’s Diary gets more praise from critics than regular watchers like you and me, but it’s a satisfying watch. Starring Renee Zellweger, Hugh Grant, and Colin Firth, this book-turned-film is full of charm and likable characters.
There was some controversy over the casting of Zellweger for the role of Bridget Jones because many believed that Jones, a British character, should be played by a British actress. However, it all blew over when Zellweger delivered a quality performance, resulting in a sympathetic character who’s easy to root for.
Without a doubt, this is one of the best films you can watch on Netflix.
IMDb: 6.7 | RT: 55%
It sounds weird to have a romantic comedy set during the last days of Earth, but Seeking a Friend for the End of the World manages to run with the idea and end up in a satisfying place. In essence, it’s an exploration of what people do when faced with such a scenario.
The film stars Steve Carell and Keira Knightley, and both bring solid performances that bring a lot of heart to what could have been an otherwise bland and predictable journey. The film also packs an emotional punch that’s stronger than you might expect going in.
8. Hitch (2005)
IMDb: 6.6 | RT: 68%
Hitch stars Will Smith, and he’s as charming and delightful as ever in his role as a love guru who can help others find true love, but can’t win the girl of his dreams. Eva Mendes plays the target of his affections, and Kevin James brings a healthy dose of humor as Smith’s hopeless client.
It’s a predictable premise right from the start, but that doesn’t prevent Hitch from delivering a solid, heartwarming story that hits all of the right notes for Valentine’s Day and beyond. It’s nothing special, but it’s easy to watch and easy to love.
9. The Incredible Jessica James (2017)
IMDb: 6.5 | RT: 86%
The Incredible Jessica James won’t knock your socks off with its standard, predictable, low-key narrative and characters. But it’s fun! Jessica Williams brings her best performance as Jessica James, elevating a potential dud into a pleasantly watchable film.
The story’s a simple one: recently split-up woman hits it off with a recently divorced man, but things get complicated when their pasts meet up with them. Can they overcome their hindrances? You’ll have to watch to find out.
Note that The Incredible Jessica James was produced and released by Netflix, proving that Netflix’s original films can be great.
10. Sleeping With Other People (2015)
IMDb: 6.5 | RT: 63%
Sleeping With Other People is an independent film that puts a twist on the traditional rom-com premise: two serial cheaters meet by happenstance years after having a one-night stand, pledge to remain just friends, but find that much harder than they thought.
Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie are awesome in their roles, and the story is a breath of fresh air among all the other cliched rom-coms out there.
11. Chalet Girl (2011)
IMDb: 6.3 | RT: 79%
Chalet Girl is a lesser-known, oft-overlooked film that is surprisingly polarizing as far as critics are concerned. If you enjoy films that are silly and corny and well aware of it, then you’ll love this one. If you need depth and something more, then you may want to skip this one.
Chalet Girl stars Felicity Jones, who brings a lot of energy to her role, and if there’s one thing that everyone praises about this film, it’s her cheery performance. Do you want to end your Valentine’s Day on a light, upbeat note? Then this is the one for you.
12. Drinking Buddies (2013)
IMDb: 6.1 | RT: 83%
Starring Olivia Wilde, Jake Johnson, Anna Kendrick, and Ron Livingston, Drinking Buddies is not the kind of romantic comedy you’d expect from a film with its name. It has elements of romance and comedy, but it’s first and foremost a drama — and that’s what makes it so compelling.
Drinking Buddies has a lot in common with films like 500 Days of Summer and 50/50: a low-key premise that’s brought to life by strong performances and a non-traditional narrative. There’s a bittersweet undercurrent here that really sets it apart as a movie worth watching, even if it isn’t stereotypical Valentine’s fare.
Which Romantic Comedies Top Your List?
Are you more inclined to watch movies that are funny, silly, and corny? Or do you prefer films that are more serious and dramatic? Either way, Netflix has a lot to offer, so start queuing them up in your to-watch list already!
Which of these films will you be watching this Valentine’s Day? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below!