Romantic Comedies: The movies I am unashamed to love

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Yes, you read it here first. I do indeed like almost every romantic comedy that our film industry produces. Some people look at me strangely when I say that I like Rom-Coms (romantic comedies to the unenlightened). I have yet to hear someone actually say it, but the look in their face says; “But, you’re a guy.” Yes, I am a guy. Yes, I do like Rom-Coms. Moving on…

My fiance and I would pay out a fortune if they would simply release a new mediocre Rom-Com each week. Rom-Com. Sometimes its just fun to say. Rom-Com. Anyway, who needs plot or great acting?  Give me a wedding or relationship related movie that has lots of laughs and hilarious situations. That’s it. End of plot. A multi-million dollar box office movie a week. To keep it different throw in some accents, and foreign countries, change the occupations and quirky best friends around. I mean if they can do it for romance novels, why not movies?

Now, at this point you’re probably thinking “sheesh, I’m not interested in these kind of movies, they’re not my cup of tea” (or boatload of gun-toting maniacs (on a side note, isn’t it awesome that Die Hard 5 is coming out on valentine’s day?)). Am I allowed to do a parenthesis inside of something I have already parenthesized? I know it’s good for math, but hmm… maybe my next post. Anyway, the MAIN reason for watching these movies, and others like them, is because it will make your lady friend(s) very happy. Heaven knows we could all use a little bit of positive credit in that regard. In respect to those who don’t watch, and don’t enjoy romantic comedies, I have tried to pick some of the more interesting ones. And, in respect to those who do gobble up every Rom-Com they come across, I have tried to avoid some of the more well known one’s like He’s Just Not That Into You, Bride Wars and Princess Bride (it’s romantic and it’s funny, by definition that makes it a Rom-Com to me).

Here are some of my favorite Rom-Coms (and a couple that are just good dramas):

How Do You Know

I was utterly baffled my first time seeing this movie. I was expecting a very normal, very typical Rom-Com. What I got instead was a series of masterful performances by all of the main actors/ actresses. Paul Rudd and Reese Witherspoon both play people whose careers and thus their lives are drastically changed. Jack Nicholson has a stellar role as Paul Rudd’s father who causes all of his son’s problems. Owen Wilson plays the well-meaning, and kind Major League Baseball player who tries to create a relationship with Reese Witherspoon’s character. The movie is packed with funny moments and I am so proud of the fact that Paul Rudd gets onto his dad (Nicholson) about being unable to understand why Jack Nicholson is yelling all the time. It is a personal pet peeve of mine that Jack Nicholson doesn’t talk in movies, he yells. If you watch no other movie on this list, watch this.

 

Leap Year

This movie is a great romp that follows Amy Adams character to Ireland in order to enact an Irish tradition that allows a woman to propose to her boyfriend on Leap Day, the 29th of February. The Irish traditions and humor comes through very strongly as the characters travel through rural countryside dealing with inclement weather and inclement sheep!! Ok, there weren’t actually sheep raining from the sky, but there were some cows blocking the road. Leap Year is a heartfelt and warm comedy that showed some of Ireland’s beautiful locations and scenery. I have seen this movie several times and still laugh at the thought of throwing a Louis Vuitton luggage piece in a washer. (In defense of my own masculinity, I did have to look up the spelling of Louis Vuitton.)

 

Going the Distance

This wonderful story follows Drew Barrymore and Justin Long as they meet and awkwardly decide to start seeing each other. Romance blooms as hilarity ensues until disaster strikes and Drew is forced to move away from the big apple (and Justin) to San Francisco. A long-distance relationship begins and is fraught with laughter and sorrow. One of the better Rom-Coms produced in the last few years but watch the rating (R), for this is not for the faint of heart.

 

 

 

The Adjustment Bureau

For the sake of keeping you interested, I am throwing in this drama. It is usually found under the thriller or suspense category, but after having seen this movie, it is a drama. Two footchases does not a thriller make. A group of “middle managers” use their otherworldly powers to keep people and events flowing according to plan. Matt Damon does everything within his power to derail that plan by finding the woman of his dreams. Slightly thought provoking, a touch of sadness, and large dose of romance make this a noteworthy Drama.

 

The Ugly Truth

It feels like Katherine Heigl stars in a new Rom-Com every other month, but of them all, this is my favorite. Heigl plays the dowdy and prudish boss of a TV station who is forced to put up with a rising star (Gerard Butler) and his offensive to women views on relationships. I enjoy the contrast between such radically different views on relationships and the clash of wills between these two superstars. Katherine Heigl enters with a 12 attribute list that the perfect man must meet while Gerard Butler plays to the broadcast audience with things like Jello wrestling.

 

 

Friends with Benefits

You may have seen the Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher movie that preceded this one by a few months titled No Strings Attached. The plots are so similar that it is scary, but of the two I think Friends with Benefits is far better. The acting is less rigid, and the chemistry between Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake is so much better. Plus, I love New York City. You can probably guess the plot of this movie from the title, Timberlake moves to New York City and starts a “friends with benefits” relationship that then causes strife when he wants more.

 

 

Crazy, Stupid, Love

This movie boasts an all-star cast and a very intermingled storyline. Steve Carrell plays the role of a man whose wife has cheated on him and who is unable to get back out there. Along comes a smooth and well-adjusted ladies man (Ryan Gosling) to upgrade his wardrobe and his social skills. Antics abound as Ryan Gosling falls madly for a woman who initially rejected him and Steve Carrell tries to win back his wife while the underage baby sitter tries to win over Steve Carrell!!

 

 

Stardust

After all the more adult and serious movies, I wanted to recommend a whimsical and sometimes silly movie. Stardust is loosely based on the novel by Neil Gaiman but has some of the more depressing elements cut out leaving behind a family friendly tale of another world. This other world “beyond the wall” is a fascinating place where the King has recently died, sending his remaining ruthless children on a quest to recover the amulet of his office. The first to find it will become King. A young man crosses the wall to try and bring back a fallen star to prove his love for a woman. One of my favorite parts of this movie is realizing that the royal princes have blue blood.

 

Think Like a Man

Think like a Man is the most recent of the ones on this list so you might have seen it already. Think Like A Man follows the stories of 5 different relationships from both the men and women’s viewpoint. Nothing too exceptional so far, but then the war breaks out. Based around the book by Steve Harvey’s Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man, this movie follows some of the stereotypes and problems that occur in relationships. Granted, in this movie the women use Steve Harvey’s book to manipulate their men into a committed and strong relationship, until the men find out!

 

 

*All views expressed in this blog are the sole responsibility of the crazy guy writing the blog. Please do not hold his editors to blame for any literary or grammatical licenses he may have taken in the creation of this blog. We did try to talk him out of it.

 

6 Comments

  1. Ron – you’re a young guy, aren’t you? I haven’t seen all of these, but I’m outside the age range for most of them, but I like to think I know a little about romantic movies, com or not. Let me make a little suggestion, and maybe you will let us know what you think. Have you ever seen “The Quiet Man”? It stars John Wayne (in a non-cowboy role), Maureen O’Hara, and best of all Ireland. It has one of the sexiest kissing scenes you will ever see and, if you watch it with women, you will have an interesting discussion about why a woman would insist on a dowry. Best seen on St. Patrick’s day, with corned beef, potatoes, irish soda bread, and of course, beer.

  2. I am relatively young yes, I turn a decadent 25 this year. I think in my life I may have, I repeat, may have seen a single movie with the Duke. I do love me some Ireland though, so I will definitely be checking this out. Fortunately, we have several copies at the library. Thanks for the suggestion.

    • Alex, Looking forward to your thoughts on this movie.

      • The best thing about this movie is that it makes me feel young again. I do love how the Irish culture comes through so strongly and the matchmaking was causing me to laugh out loud.

  3. Great reference to The Quiet Man in Spielberg’s E.T.

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