In honor of Valentine’s Day we’ve got a list of films to watch today no matter what you’re looking for. From classic romantic dramas to films that help ya get through the day alone, we’ve got ya covered.
Casablanca – The Classic
Rick’s (Humphrey Bogart) life is turned upside down when an old flame (Ingrid Bergman) walks into his nightclub in Casablanca, asking that he help her and her husband, a famed Czech resistance leader, escape to America. Considered not only one of the best romantic films of all time, but one of the best pieces of cinema ever created, the film is an endearing classic.
(500) Days of Summer – The All Encompassing Love Story
Sometimes it’s hard to see the big picture. That’s the core idea here as Tom (Joseph Gordon Levitt) tries to get over his now ex-girlfriend Summer (Zooey Deschanel). The film takes a nonlinear approach as we see the good and the bad in the 500 days that Summer’s presence filled his life. It’s a beautiful story that’s about every part of a relationship, including the parts we forget when things are good.
Love Actually – The Timeless British Film
It may be a Christmas movie, but this film is truly timeless. Consisting of 9 different interconnected stories, the film looks at different types of relationships, asking what love truly means. A heartfelt film that will stick with you long after the credits roll.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – A Reminder of What’s Important
Sometimes we forget how much someone can truly mean to us. How much they can truly be ingrained into the fabric of our life. After breaking up, Clementine (Kate Winslet) begins a procedure to have her memories of Joel (Jim Carrey) erased from her mind. Joel attempts the procedure and begins to realize that maybe it’s not the best idea. Considered by many to be one of the best films of the aughts, the film won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay, and showed audiences that Carrey could be a serious dramatic actor.
Moonrise Kingdom – Remembering Childhood Bliss
After meeting during a church play, Sam (Jared Gilman) and Suzy (Kaya Hayward) become pen pals and begin to fall in love. While attending Summer Camp on the fictional New England island, New Penzance, Sam runs away with Suzy. The film follows Sam and Suzy’s continued romance as Sam’s Scout Troop and Suzy’s parents go searching for the missing couple. It’s a sweet tale that’s funny and heartfelt, and a reminder of the bliss of childhood “relationships.”
The Notebook – The Traditional Fare
There’s plenty of sappy Romance films out there, but The Notebook is quite possibly the best contemporary romance film. The film that sparked (no pun intended) a stream of Nicholas Sparks adaptations, and plenty of knock offs for more than a decade, is better than it seems. With perfect performances by Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, James Garner, Gena Rowlands and James Marsden, the film will make you feel good and make you shed a tear or two.
Definitely, Maybe – A Romantic Mystery
Will (Ryan Reynolds) is in the midst of a divorce when his daughter (Abigail Breslin) asks him how her parents fell in love. He recounts the story as a mystery, where he tells her about three women (Elizabeth Banks, Isla Fisher and Rachel Weisz) that he fell in with, and she attempts to figure out which one was her mother. It’s one of the few Rom-Com’s that is seen from the male perspective and helped Reynolds rise to fame.
Crazy Stupid Love – Three Generations of Love
Crazy Stupid Love begins with Cal (Steve Carell) and Emily (Julianne Moore) separating after she had an affair with a co-worker (Kevin Bacon). Cal ends up getting dating advice from Jacob (Ryan Gosling) a womanizer he meets at a bar. Jacob meets Hannah (Emma Stone) at the bar, and begins to truly fall in love and change his ways. Meanwhile Cal and Emily’s young son Robbie (Jonah Bobo), is falling for his 17-year-old babysitter Jessica (Analeigh Tipton), who has a crush on Cal. All three stories begin to intertwine as the film goes on, creating a story about how insane and infuriating love can be. The film was written by Dan Fogelman, the same man behind This Is Us. Let’s just say the man has a way with words.
Beginners – What Our Parents Teach Us
Oliver (Ewan McGregor) loses his father Hal (Christopher Plummer) to cancer, and begins to reflect on the last five years with his father, in which his mother died and Hal came out as a Gay man. As he reflects on this time with his father he begins to fall in love with Anna (Mélanie Laurent). It’s a touching film that explores how the love we see in our parents can affect us in various ways. Plummer took home an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his role in the film.
The Princess Bride – The Fairy Tale
A Grandfather (Peter Falk) tells his sick grandson (Fred Savage) a fairy tale about a farmhand named Wesley (Cary Elwes) and the interesting characters he befriends on his journey to save his one true love, Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright), before she’s forced to marry the evil Prince Humperdink (Chris Sarandon). The Princess Bride isn’t just a classic romance or fairy tale film, it’s one of the funniest films ever made, and features some of the best one liners in film history.
High Fidelity – Romantic Retrospective
After getting dumped by his girlfriend Laura (Iben Hjejle), Rob (John Cusack) looks back on his top five relationships to figure out where he seems to keep going wrong with women. If nothing else, this film may make you fall in love with Lisa Bonet.
Up – Love Makes Us Do Crazy Things
Up isn’t exactly a love story. The first 8 minutes or so are. But the rest of the film is about what we do for those that we love. Despite everything else that happens, all the adventure, and talking dogs, and all of it; Up, at it’s core is about a man honoring the memory of his departed wife. Reminding us that true love means doing everything you can for the one you love, no matter what that may take or what it may mean.
Blue Valentine – Love at Odds
The film flashes back and forth between the start of the relationship between Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams), and the disintegration of their marriage. It’s a brutal but beautiful film, that shows love at it’s best and worst. Never painting either character in a bad light, just showing how things happen. It’s the type of film that stays with you for a long time.
Stranger Than Fiction – Romance Amidst Imminent Death
Harold Crick (Will Ferrell) is a rather plain individual that works for the IRS. But his life is turned upside down when he begins to hear a voice narrating his life. The voice belongs to Karen Eiffel (Emma Thompson), a writer whose books all end with the main character dying in some tragic way. Harold realizes that he is the main character in Karen’s new book. Harold attempts to convince Karen not to kill him off, all while learning to truly live life to the fullest, including engaging in a romantic relationship with tax-delinquent bakery owner Ana (Maggie Gyllenhaal). While the film’s main focus is Harold’s attempt to save his life and the new outlook he gains from the situation, the love story is the part of the film that gives it the most strength.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall – How to Properly Move On
Peter (Jason Segal) is a composer for the popular TV show Crime Scene: Scene of the Crime, starring his girlfriend, Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell). When Sarah dumps Peter he goes into a downward spiral. He decides to take a vacation to Hawaii to get away from everything, only to find out she’s vacationing there too with her new boyfriend, Rockstar Aldous Snow (Russell Brand). The film shows that even when the world keeps kicking you down, you can still move on and better yourself. And that sometimes the right person can show up in the most unexpected places.
Revolutionary Road – Love On The Rocks
Most People will point to the other Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet film, but we’re not most people. Revolutionary Road reunites the actors as a married couple falling apart after moving to the suburbs of Connecticut. It’s a truly tragic film, that will tear you apart by the end, with amazing performances by DiCaprio, Winslet and Michael Shannon. Not the traditional love story you may consider for Valentine’s day, but a film about love and marriage none the less.
Wall-E – Robot Love
The story of a trash compactor robot who falls in love, is sweet, heartfelt, beautiful, and considered by many to be one of Pixar’s best films. Nominated for 6 Academy Awards, considered by many to be one of the best films of 2008 and one of the best films of the 21st century. Wall-E is the type of film you can watch at any time and it will cheer you up and make you feel good about life.
Lost In Translation – Not Exactly Love
Bill Murray takes a serious turn as Bob, an aging actor who takes a job for a whiskey commercial in Japan. While there he begins a friendship with a young married woman, Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson), who is there with her husband, a celebrity photographer. Both of them lost souls, looking for something they may never find. It’s a film that’s about that one great experience with another human being. Love or not, sometimes you just need that connection.
Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Poor Man’s Spoiler!