Favorite Romantic Comedies
Name your ten favorite Romantic Comedies. It’s not as easy as you might think. I thought it would be a snap to pick ten movies that made me feel good all over from the pitter-patter in my heart to the laughter in my belly. For me a true romantic comedy should be joyous and warm… with a little bickering. Easy? Not.
I wrestled with my list coming up with thirty-six favorites; culled the list down to twenty-one. Then before I took my scalpel in hand for the final cuts, I Googled the “All-time Popular Romantic Comedies.” Holy cats! I missed a bunch. They ranged from Bringing up Baby (1938) Gary Grant and Katherine Hepburn, to Tootsie (1982) Dustin Hoffman and Jessica Lange, to Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (2011) Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt. Even I couldn’t make up a title like that. 🙂
What is a Romantic Comedy?
If there’s more than one giggle and a kiss, the movie is deemed a Romantic Comedy. When Harry Met Sally – Special Edition. Sometimes films fall too heavily into comedy and not so much romance. One of my very favorite flicks is A Fish Called Wanda which although wrapped around a hilarious romance between John Cleese and Jamie Lee Curtis, is much more comedy than romance.
Viewers tastes have changed
Not only have we gone from twin beds to bare dangly bits, but now low humor is in full sail. Compare… It Happened One Night… a classic starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert to Knocked Up starring Katherine Heigl and Seth Rogen. Can you imagine asking Gable to star in something called Knocked Up? Or Doris Day wearing the same “hair gel” as Cameron Diaz in There’s Something About Mary?
Romantic Comedy genre
Many really good flicks are listed as Romantic Comedies but they lean heavily on comedy. Tootsie was light on romance. L.A.Story starring Steve Martin and Victoria Tennant is a terrific film that cut down on the romance in favor of comedy.
My personal top ten:
Mr & Mrs. Smith… Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt take bickering to a new high. Snappy dialogue and sizzling romance make this my favorite.
Grosse Pointe Blank… great balance of hysterical comedy and romance between John Cusack and Minnie Driver.
Bridget Jones Diary… Renee Zellweger, Colin Firth, Hugh Grant. Great fun with a delightfully plump heroine and a heart-melting leading man.
The Wedding Date… Debra Messing, Dermot Mulroney. Messing is the queen of physical comedy and Lucille Ball’s heir apparent. I could watch her read the phone book, if we still had phone books. 🙂
The Holiday… Any film that can make Jack Black a romantic lead deserves my vote. With Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, and Jude Law. British-American cultural exchange. Pure pleasure to watch.
My Big Fat Greek Wedding… A happy movie loaded with love. Nia Vardalos was so sweet. I would have kidnapped hunky John Corbett but he’s too big for me to carry.
Notting Hill… the combination of the king of romantic comedies, writer/director Richard Curtis and his almost constant muse, Hugh Grant, made this the best of their extensive compilation of romantic comedies. Julia Roberts was the icing on the cake. A damsel in distress, and a phumphering guy with his heart on his sleeve.
When Harry Met Sally… Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal were great as budding lovers. Does sex ruin a friendship?
Serendipity… John Cusack, Kate Beckinsale. When he opens Love in the Time of Cholera … okay… no spoilers. So romantic.
Don Juan DeMarco… Johnny Depp, Marlon Brando, Faye Dunaway. Johnny Depp is the soul of romance in this story that defines a man’s love for a woman.
A Good Year – Russell Crowe * Bull Durham – Kevin Costner, Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins * Romancing the Stone – Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner * My Best Friend’s Wedding – Julia Roberts, Dermot Mulroney * Love at First Bite – George Hamilton, Susan Saint James
Oldies but goodies
Pretty in Pink * Breakfast at Tiffany’s * Annie Hall
Oldies that didn’t stand the test of time
Some of the best films now seem way too naive or dated. Examples: The Seven Year Itch – Marilyn Monroe and Tom Ewell. How to Marry a Millionaire – Marilyn Monroe, Betty Grable, and Lauren Bacall. Contrast those gals with Melanie Griffith in Working Girl.
Bits and Bobs
Most appearances in Romantic Comedies – Hugh Grant
Whatever happened to – Dermot Mulroney?
My personal choices for best RomCom leads – John Cusack and Debra Messing
Your choices in Romantic Comedies reveals a lot about you. Take a minute to review your list of top ten. What tickles your funny bone while snuggling your heart?