The best of Netflix right now if you're looking for... romance
If you're anything like us, you're confronted with that same question everyday. What will I watch on Netflix tonight?
Well we know when it comes to Netflix, mood is a major factor. Sometimes you're in the mood for something dark and brooding. Other times, you just want something light you can switch your brain off to. At times, you're in the mood for something new. Then again, you may want to re-watch an old reliable.
With that in mind, we're assembling a series of Netflix recommendations with plenty to choose from. Every month, we'll give our top picks of shows, filums and specials with a different theme in mind each time.
For our debut listicle, we picked romance. After all, that cheesy, mushy mood does strike every now and again, right? Spanning series and features, rom coms and romantic dramas, here are our picks on Netflix if you're in the mood for romance.
As indicated by its opening song 'Where You Lead I Will Follow', 'Gilmore Girls' is the ultimate comforting TV show. The pick-me-up-then-make-me-cry seven season-long series follows the highs and occasional lows of single mom Lorelai (Lauren Graham) and daughter Rory Gilmore (Alexis Bledel). The goings on of the quirky town of Stars Hollow that they call home are never dull.
We’re aware not everyone feels the same way, but we’re sticking to our guns and arguing that ‘Isn’t It Romantic’ is great craic altogether and more to the point, it gives you exactly what you want from a Netflix movie. Rebel Wilson is the best she has ever been as a cynical singleton who lands in her worst nightmare – a PG13 romantic comedy. It’s fun, sweet, snappy, chockablock with movie references (that aren’t limited to rom coms) and genuinely entertaining.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
Given all the terrible teen dramas on Netflix (like 'The Kissing Booth' and 'The Perfect Date', to name just a couple), we're surprised ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’ is as good as it is. Storywise, it's about a teenage girl whose secret love letters get distributed to her crushes. Lana Condor is perfection as the lead and Noah Centineo makes for a charming support. The movie is entertaining, insightful and fun. Audiences beyond the YA target market will find much to enjoy.
Bridget Jones’s Diary
Yes you've probably seen 'Bridget Jones's Diary' about a million times by now - especially at Christmas - but come on. You can't have a list of romantic movies and not include it. The 2004 sequel' Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason' is available on Netflix too.
This underrated gem from Richard Curtis stars our own Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams in yet another film where she plays a Time Traveller's Wife. At least in this case our protagonist Tim (Gleeson) has agency over his ability, which is a gene he inherited from his father (Bill Nighy). Look out for some early career performances from Margot Robbie and 'The Crown's Vanessa Kirby.
We couldn't exclude the most romantic comedy of all romantic comedies! Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan play the titular characters, two friends that can't seem to keep away from each other. Their relationship commences with a cross-country drive, after which they share twelve years of chance encounters in New York City.
The Princess Bride
As with 'Bridget Jones's Diary', you've probably seen it, but no list of romantic movies is complete without 'The Princess Bride.' The joyous action-adventure-fantasy has delighted young and old for over 30 years and is still quoted endlessly. Its more romantic lines include "As you wish" and "true love is the greatest thing in the world-except for a nice MLT – mutton, lettuce and tomato sandwich, where the mutton is nice and lean and the tomato is ripe. They’re so perky, I love that."
In this writer’s opinion, ‘Notting Hill’ is a better Richard Curtis film than ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral’ and you can’t change my mind about it. Starring Hugh Grant as an awkward bookshop owner and Julia Roberts as a classy movie star, the film is the go-to romantic comedy. Its most iconic line? “I'm just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her.”
This engrossing romantic drama depicting the life of Stephen Hawking and his relationship with his wife Jane earned Eddie Redmayne an Oscar and was a breakthrough performance for Felicity Jones, who would go on to star in 'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story' and 'On the Basis of Sex'.
To get the emotional impact of this one, it's best to not read the real-life story behind the movie until after seeing it. The extremely talented Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin play a young couple who set sail together but get caught in one of the most catastrophic hurricanes in recorded history. They fight for survival against impossible odds.
This biopic about the author of 'Frankenstein' flew under the radar when it was released a couple of years back but is definitely worth a watch. Elle Fanning plays the titular character while Douglas Booth plays the writer Percy Shelley, who she falls for and quickly marries, only to discover his many inner demons.
Four Weddings and a Funeral
The quintessential Richard Curtis movie, 'Four Weddings And A Funeral' followed Charles (Hugh Grant) searching for love and SPOILER #1 eventually finding it with Carrie (Andie MacDowell). In the process he SPOILER #2 attends four weddings and a funeral with his friends. Curtis went on to write 'Love Actually', 'Notting Hill' and 'About Time'.
Inspired by a true story, 'Belle' depicts the life and loves of a Royal Navy Admiral's mixed-race daughter raised by her uncle. Gugu Mbatha-Raw is simply incredible as Dido Elizabeth Belle Lindsay.
Beauty and the Beast
The live-action remake of 'Beauty and the Beast' smashed at the box office and is on Netflix now. As was the case with the original animated feature, the claim that Belle has Stockholm syndrome tends to be pushed aside when considering the romance at the heart of the fairytale. At least they're the same specie by the end of the film.
'The Notebook' did wonders for the careers of Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams. However it also led to an unnecessary numbers of Nicholas Sparks movie adaptations. The film follows an elderly man reading a love story to a woman in a retirement home about a poor yet passionate young man who falls for a wealthy young woman.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Already a decade old, 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall' still holds up phenomenally. Jason Segel plays Peter, who is left devastated after his girlfriend of five years, Sarah (Kristen Bell), dumps him. He goes to Hawaii to forget Sarah - but low and behold, she's there with her new boyfriend (Russell Brand). It's not all bad news as Peter soon meets beautiful receptionist Rachel (Mila Kunis). Highlights include Jonah Hill's one-liners and the Dracula musical that serves as the finale.
This indie teen comedy starring Mae Whitman ('Arrested Development', 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower') ended up winning the hearts of critics all over. A high school senior instigates a social pecking order revolution after finding out that she has been labeled the DUFF - Designated Ugly Fat Friend - by her prettier, more popular counterparts.
Have tissues at the ready for this one because no matter how many times you've seen it, the waterworks are inevitable. Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort play two teenage cancer patients who fall in love. Based on a bestselling novel, 'The Fault in Our Stars' will make you wanna head to Amsterdam at once.
Set It Up
Every so often, Netflix produces a great original film and 'Set It Up' is one of them. Reuniting 'Everybody Wants Some!!' stars Glen Powell and Zoey Deutsch, the two young actors play the respective PAs of Taye Diggs and Lucy Liu's characters. They hatch up a plan to set their bosses up with one another so they can finally get their own free time. Eating pizza drunk in the middle of the night has never seemed more romantic.
Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging
We've picked a number of cute teen rom coms within our selection of Netflix movies. They don't get much cuter than 'Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging'. Georgia Groome plays a 14 year old who is experiencing things like kissing, love and thongs, all for the first time. Aaron Taylor-Johnson co-stars in one of his first film roles.
Maid in Manhattan
The rom com that everyone has seen more times than they care to admit. Jennifer Lopez plays the eponymous maid who a Senatorial candidate (Joseph Fiennes) falls for after mistaking her for a guest at the hotel where she actually works. Fun fact: 'Maid in Manhattan' is based on a story by John Hughes, who is credited using a pseudonym.
Magnificently directed by Todd Haynes, beautifully filmed by cinematographer Edward Lachman, and tenderly performed by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, 'Carol' relates how a shop clerk slash aspiring photographer develops an intimate relationship with an older, glamourous woman in 1950s New York.
Starring Ali Wong (whose Netflix specials 'Baby Cobra' and 'Hard Knock Wife' should also be checked out on Netflix) and Randall Park (probably best-known for playing Asian Jim on 'The Office'), 'Always Be My Maybe' sees two childhood friends reconnect later in life at which point she is now a celebrity chef and he still works for his dad's plumbing business. The Keanu Reeves cameo alone makes this a must-see.
Nicolas Cage and Cher star in this Oscar-winning romantic comedy about a pair of star-crossed lovers in New York City. Winning Cher an Oscar for her performance and Best Original Screenplay for John Patrick Shanley, 'Moonstruck' presents itself as a romance. However, there really are several small, absolutely hilarious moments throughout. Nicolas Cage and Cher have dynamite chemistry together, and the charm of the movie is infectious.
A Royal Affair
Before 'Ex Machina', 'Testament of Youth' and 'Tomb Raider', Alicia Vikander came to moviegoers' attention in the award-winning historical drama 'A Royal Affair.' She plays a young queen, who is married to an insane king, and falls secretly in love with her physician. Mads Mikkelsen and Mikkel Følsgaard co-star and are also incredible.
If you're looking for a romantic drama, inspiring true story, and a weepy that will tug on your heart strings and tear ducts, look no further than 'Breathe.' The film follows Robin Cavendish (Andrew Garfield) who falls in love with and marries Diana (Claire Foy). Their bliss comes to an abrupt halt when Robin contracts polio, paralysing him from the neck down. The couple are inspired to invent the wheelchair which not only revolutionises Robin's life but those of others who are disabled. 'Breathe' marks the directorial debut of Andy Serkis.
Blue is the Warmest Colour
'Blue Is the Warmest Color' tells the story of a teenager named Adele whose life is totally changed when the blue-haired Emma, played by Lea Seydoux, enters her life. The relationship transforms Adele into a mature, creative and liberated young woman, but as the years go on, cracks begin to show. The French film is renowned for its graphic sex scenes. Its raw depiction of how challenging relationships are and the profound effects of love on a person make it unmissable.