105 Best Fresh Romance Movies

One guiding thought in putting together’s Rotten Tomatoes’ 100 best Fresh romance movies was making a list with heavy dramas and darker delights, without making it totally dour. So lighter masterpieces that fit in our best romantic comedies list (see here) tended to stay over there, as we sought out movies with sweep, an amorous kind of spectacle, and, most importantly, at least 20 reviews. So whether your date is hot or Häagen-Dazs, get ready to be couchlocked by love with these 100 best Fresh romance movies!

#105

Jason's Lyric (1994)
58%

#105
Adjusted Score: 58029%
Critics Consensus: Jason's Lyric is a sexually charged film whose violent streak weakens or, depending on your perspective, supports the melodrama.
Synopsis: In a violent, drug-infested neighborhood in Houston, Jason (Allen Payne) dreams of something better. He works as a TV salesman... [More]
Directed By: Doug McHenry

#104

Chocolat (2000)
62%

#104
Adjusted Score: 66017%
Critics Consensus: Chocolat is a charmingly light-hearted fable with a lovely performance by Binoche.
Synopsis: When mysterious Vianne and her child arrive in a tranquil French town in the winter of 1959, no one could... [More]
Directed By: Lasse Hallström

#103

Pretty Woman (1990)
65%

#103
Adjusted Score: 69929%
Critics Consensus: Pretty Woman may be a yuppie fantasy, but the film's slick comedy, soundtrack, and casting can overcome misgivings.
Synopsis: In this modern update on Cinderella, a prostitute and a wealthy businessman fall hard for one another, forming an unlikely... [More]
Directed By: Garry Marshall

#102

Love Actually (2003)
64%

#102
Adjusted Score: 71410%
Critics Consensus: A sugary tale overstuffed with too many stories. Still, the cast charms.
Synopsis: Nine intertwined stories examine the complexities of the one emotion that connects us all: love. Among the characters explored are... [More]
Directed By: Richard Curtis

#101
#101
Adjusted Score: 67238%
Critics Consensus: There's not too much to it besides Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr, but that's still enough to make this An Affair to Remember.
Synopsis: A man and a woman have a romance while on a cruise from Europe to New York. Despite being engaged... [More]
Directed By: Leo McCarey

#100

Dirty Dancing (1987)
69%

#100
Adjusted Score: 74413%
Critics Consensus: Like its winsome characters, Dirty Dancing uses impressive choreography and the power of song to surmount a series of formidable obstacles.
Synopsis: Baby (Jennifer Grey) is one listless summer away from the Peace Corps. Hoping to enjoy her youth while it lasts,... [More]
Directed By: Emile Ardolino

#99

About Time (2013)
70%

#99
Adjusted Score: 75602%
Critics Consensus: Beautifully filmed and unabashedly sincere, About Time finds director Richard Curtis at his most sentimental.
Synopsis: When Tim Lake (Domhnall Gleeson) is 21, his father (Bill Nighy) tells him a secret: The men in their family... [More]
Directed By: Richard Curtis

#98
Adjusted Score: 71960%
Critics Consensus: Julia Stiles and Heath Ledger add strong performances to an unexpectedly clever script, elevating 10 Things (slightly) above typical teen fare.
Synopsis: Kat Stratford (Julia Stiles) is beautiful, smart and quite abrasive to most of her fellow teens, meaning that she doesn't... [More]
Directed By: Gil Junger

#97

You've Got Mail (1998)
69%

#97
Adjusted Score: 73354%
Critics Consensus: Great chemistry between the leads made this a warm and charming delight.
Synopsis: Struggling boutique bookseller Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) hates Joe Fox (Tom Hanks), the owner of a corporate Foxbooks chain store... [More]
Directed By: Nora Ephron

#96
Adjusted Score: 82106%
Critics Consensus: Curious Case of Benjamin Button is an epic fantasy tale with rich storytelling backed by fantastic performances.
Synopsis: Born under unusual circumstances, Benjamin Button (Brad Pitt) springs into being as an elderly man in a New Orleans nursing... [More]
Directed By: David Fincher

#95

Pretty in Pink (1986)
73%

#95
Adjusted Score: 78086%
Critics Consensus: Molly Ringwald gives an outstanding performance in this sweet, intelligent teen comedy that takes an ancient premise and injects it with insight and wit.
Synopsis: Andie (Molly Ringwald) is an outcast at her Chicago high school, hanging out either with her older boss (Annie Potts),... [More]
Directed By: Howard Deutch

#94
Adjusted Score: 75677%
Critics Consensus: Baz Luhrmann's visual aesthetic is as divisive as it is fresh and inventive.
Synopsis: Baz Luhrmann helped adapt this classic Shakespearean romantic tragedy for the screen, updating the setting to a post-modern city named... [More]
Directed By: Baz Luhrmann

#93

Ghost (1990)
75%

#93
Adjusted Score: 80273%
Critics Consensus: Ghost offers viewers a poignant romance while blending elements of comedy, horror, and mystery, all adding up to one of the more enduringly watchable hits of its era.
Synopsis: Sam Wheat (Patrick Swayze) is a banker, Molly Jensen (Demi Moore) is an artist, and the two are madly in... [More]
Directed By: Jerry Zucker

#92
#92
Adjusted Score: 78610%
Critics Consensus: Sleepless in Seattle is a cute classic with a very light touch and real chemistry between the two leads -- even when spending an entire movie apart.
Synopsis: After the death of his wife, Sam Baldwin (Tom Hanks) moves to Seattle with his son, Jonah (Ross Mallinger). When... [More]
Directed By: Nora Ephron

#91

Moulin Rouge (2001)
76%

#91
Adjusted Score: 84174%
Critics Consensus: A love-it-or-hate-it experience, Moulin Rouge is all style, all giddy, over-the-top spectacle. But it's also daring in its vision and wildly original.
Synopsis: A celebration of love and creative inspiration takes place in the infamous, gaudy and glamorous Parisian nightclub, at the cusp... [More]
Directed By: Baz Luhrmann

#90
Adjusted Score: 80056%
Critics Consensus: Old-fashioned without sacrificing its characters to simplicity, An Officer and a Gentleman successfully walks the fine line between sweeping romance and melodrama.
Synopsis: Zack Mayo (Richard Gere), a new member of the U.S. Navy, has a bad attitude. When he signs up for... [More]
Directed By: Taylor Hackford

#89
#89
Adjusted Score: 83807%
Critics Consensus: A well-crafted and visually arresting drama with a touch of whimsy.
Synopsis: Mathilde (Audrey Tautou) is told that her fiancé (Gaspard Ulliel) has been killed in World War I. She refuses to... [More]
Directed By: Jean-Pierre Jeunet

#88

Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
79%

#88
Adjusted Score: 84775%
Critics Consensus: Odd, touching, and unique, Punch-Drunk Love is also delightfully funny, utilizing Adam Sandler's comic persona to explore the life of a lonely guy who finds love.
Synopsis: Although susceptible to violent outbursts, bathroom supply business owner Barry Egan (Adam Sandler) is a timid and shy man by... [More]
Directed By: Paul Thomas Anderson

#87
#87
Adjusted Score: 85431%
Critics Consensus: Though there was controversy over the choice of casting, Zellweger's Bridget Jones is a sympathetic, likable, funny character, giving this romantic comedy a lot of charm.
Synopsis: At the start of the New Year, 32-year-old Bridget (Renée Zellweger) decides it's time to take control of her life... [More]
Directed By: Sharon Maguire

#86
#86
Adjusted Score: 91412%
Critics Consensus: Part biopic, part love story, The Theory of Everything rises on James Marsh's polished direction and the strength of its two leads.
Synopsis: In the 1960s, Cambridge University student and future physicist Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) falls in love with fellow collegian Jane... [More]
Directed By: James Marsh

#85
#85
Adjusted Score: 86502%
Critics Consensus: Lars and the Real Girl could've so easily been a one-joke movie. But the talented cast, a great script, and direction never condescends to its character or the audience.
Synopsis: Extremely shy Lars (Ryan Gosling) finds it impossible to make friends or socialize. His brother (Paul Schneider) and sister-in-law (Emily... [More]
Directed By: Craig Gillespie

#84

Death Is a Woman (1967)
82%

#84
Adjusted Score: 84414%
Critics Consensus: One of the last times Godard could make film paradoxes with glee, A Woman Is a Woman is a mocking, genuine tribute to musicals.
Synopsis: A British narcotics agent (Mark Burns) links a woman (Patsy Ann Noble) to Mediterranean murder and heroin.... [More]
Directed By: Frederic Goode

#83

Notting Hill (1999)
83%

#83
Adjusted Score: 87163%
Critics Consensus: A rom-com with the right ingredients, Notting Hill proves there's nothing like a love story well told -- especially when Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts are your leads.
Synopsis: William Thacker (Hugh Grant) is a London bookstore owner whose humdrum existence is thrown into romantic turmoil when famous American... [More]
Directed By: Roger Michell

#82

Bright Star (2009)
83%

#82
Adjusted Score: 89499%
Critics Consensus: Jane Campion's direction is as refined as her screenplay, and she gets the most out of her cast -- especially Abbie Cornish -- in this understated period drama.
Synopsis: In 1818, high-spirited young Fanny Brawne (Abbie Cornish) finds herself increasingly intrigued by the handsome but aloof poet John Keats... [More]
Directed By: Jane Campion

#81

Atonement (2007)
83%

#81
Adjusted Score: 92316%
Critics Consensus: Atonement features strong performances, brilliant cinematography, and a unique score. Featuring deft performances from James MacAvoy and Keira Knightley, it's a successful adaptation of Ian McEwan's novel.
Synopsis: This sweeping English drama, based on the book by Ian McEwan, follows the lives of young lovers Cecilia Tallis (Keira... [More]
Directed By: Joe Wright

#80

Doctor Zhivago (1965)
84%

#80
Adjusted Score: 89603%
Critics Consensus: It may not be the best of David Lean's epics, but Dr. Zhivago is still brilliantly photographed and sweepingly romantic.
Synopsis: During the Russian Revolution, Yuri Zhivago (Omar Sharif), is a young doctor who has been raised by his aunt and... [More]
Directed By: David Lean

#79

Jerry Maguire (1996)
84%

#79
Adjusted Score: 89236%
Critics Consensus: Anchored by dazzling performances from Tom Cruise, Cuba Gooding Jr., and Renée Zellweger, as well as Cameron Crowe's tender direction, Jerry Maguire meshes romance and sports with panache.
Synopsis: When slick sports agent Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise) has a crisis of conscience, he pens a heartfelt company-wide memo that... [More]
Directed By: Cameron Crowe

#78
#78
Adjusted Score: 85716%
Critics Consensus: Brash and big-hearted, The Lovers on the Bridge can sweep away most viewers with its mad romanticism.
Synopsis: A homeless addict (Denis Lavant) and a young painter (Juliette Binoche) with failing eyesight forge a bond on the streets... [More]
Directed By: Leos Carax

#77

Harold and Maude (1971)
86%

#77
Adjusted Score: 89767%
Critics Consensus: Hal Ashby's comedy is too dark and twisted for some, and occasionally oversteps its bounds, but there's no denying the film's warm humor and big heart.
Synopsis: Cult classic pairs Cort as a dead-pan disillusioned 20-year-old obsessed with suicide and a loveable Gordon as a fun-loving 80-year-old... [More]
Directed By: Hal Ashby

#76
#76
Adjusted Score: 90443%
Critics Consensus: Though it suffers from excessive length and ambition, director Minghella's adaptation of the Michael Ondaatje novel is complex, powerful, and moving.
Synopsis: The sweeping expanses of the Sahara are the setting for a passionate love affair in this adaptation of Michael Ondaatje's... [More]
Directed By: Anthony Minghella

#75
#75
Adjusted Score: 93685%
Critics Consensus: Sure, it's another adaptation of cinema's fave Jane Austen novel, but key performances and a modern filmmaking sensibility make this familiar period piece fresh and enjoyable.
Synopsis: In this adaptation of Jane Austen's beloved novel, Elizabeth Bennet (Keira Knightley) lives with her mother, father and sisters in... [More]
Directed By: Joe Wright

#74
#74
Adjusted Score: 94969%
Critics Consensus: Worth watching for Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton's performances alone, Only Lovers Left Alive finds writer-director Jim Jarmusch adding a typically offbeat entry to the vampire genre.
Synopsis: Artistic, sophisticated and centuries old, two vampire lovers (Tilda Swinton, Tom Hiddleston) ponder their ultimate place in modern society.... [More]
Directed By: Jim Jarmusch

#73

Blue Valentine (2010)
86%

#73
Adjusted Score: 94647%
Critics Consensus: This emotionally gripping examination of a marriage on the rocks isn't always easy to watch, but Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling give performances of unusual depth and power.
Synopsis: Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy (Michelle Williams) live a quiet life in a modest neighborhood. To the casual observer, everything... [More]
Directed By: Derek Cianfrance

#72
#72
Adjusted Score: 97920%
Critics Consensus: A beautiful, epic Western, Brokeback Mountain's love story is imbued with heartbreaking universality thanks to moving performances by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.
Synopsis: In 1963, rodeo cowboy Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal) and ranch hand Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger) are hired by rancher... [More]
Directed By: Ang Lee

#71
#71
Adjusted Score: 94387%
Critics Consensus: It contains some ugly anachronisms, but Blake Edwards is at his funniest in this iconic classic, and Audrey Hepburn absolutely lights up the screen.
Synopsis: Based on Truman Capote's novel, this is the story of a young woman in New York City who meets a... [More]
Directed By: Blake Edwards

#70
#70
Adjusted Score: 90725%
Critics Consensus: Even if all it had to offer were writer-director Wong Kar-wai's thrillingly distinctive visuals, Chungking Express would be well worth watching; happily, its thoughtfully drawn characters and naturalistic performances also pack a potent dramatic wallop.
Synopsis: Every day, Cop 223 (Takeshi Kaneshiro) buys a can of pineapple with an expiration date of May 1, symbolizing the... [More]
Directed By: Kar Wai Wong

#69

Amélie (2001)
89%

#69
Adjusted Score: 95487%
Critics Consensus: The feel-good Amelie is a lively, fanciful charmer, showcasing Audrey Tautou as its delightful heroine.
Synopsis: "Amélie" is a fanciful comedy about a young woman who discretely orchestrates the lives of the people around her, creating... [More]
Directed By: Jean-Pierre Jeunet

#68

Titanic (1997)
87%

#68
Adjusted Score: 102582%
Critics Consensus: A mostly unqualified triumph for James Cameron, who offers a dizzying blend of spectacular visuals and old-fashioned melodrama.
Synopsis: James Cameron's "Titanic" is an epic, action-packed romance set against the ill-fated maiden voyage of the R.M.S. Titanic; the pride... [More]
Directed By: James Cameron

#67
#67
Adjusted Score: 96460%
Critics Consensus: Raw, honest, powerfully acted, and deliciously intense, Blue Is the Warmest Color offers some of modern cinema's most elegantly composed, emotionally absorbing drama.
Synopsis: A French teen (Adèle Exarchopoulos) forms a deep emotional and sexual connection with an older art student (Léa Seydoux) she... [More]
Directed By: Abdellatif Kechiche

#66
#66
Adjusted Score: 92686%
Critics Consensus: Big heart, big drama, and even bigger colors, All That Heaven Allows is tip top Douglas Sirk.
Synopsis: Predicated on a May-December romance. The difference here is that the woman, attractive widow Cary Scott (Jane Wyman), is considerably... [More]
Directed By: Douglas Sirk

#65
Adjusted Score: 93618%
Critics Consensus: Sentimental, slow, schmaltzy, and very satisfying, The Bridges of Madison County finds Clint Eastwood adapting a bestseller with heft, wit, and grace.
Synopsis: A moving love story about a photographer on assignment to shoot the historic bridges of Madison County. He meets a... [More]
Directed By: Clint Eastwood

#64
#64
Adjusted Score: 94044%
Critics Consensus: The first collaboration between Johnny Depp and Tim Burton, Edward Scissorhands is a magical modern fairy tale with gothic overtones and a sweet center.
Synopsis: A scientist (Vincent Price) builds an animated human being -- the gentle Edward (Johnny Depp). The scientist dies before he... [More]
Directed By: Tim Burton

#63
#63
Adjusted Score: 100207%
Critics Consensus: Gone with the Wind's epic grandeur and romantic allure encapsulate an era of Hollywood filmmaking -- but that can't excuse a blinkered perspective that stands on the wrong side of history.
Synopsis: Presented as originally released in 1939. Includes themes and character depictions which may be offensive and problematic to contemporary audiences.... [More]
Directed By: Victor Fleming

#62
#62
Adjusted Score: 91665%
Critics Consensus: Eric Rohmer's Chloe in the Afternoon doesn't need sparkly cinematic dross to discover unspoken, universal truths about relationships and love through filmmaking.
Synopsis: Eric Rohmer's acclaimed meditation on marital fidelity follows Frederic (Bernard Verley), a successful Parisian lawyer who is happily married to... [More]
Directed By: Eric Rohmer

#61

Now, Voyager (1942)
91%

#61
Adjusted Score: 90593%
Critics Consensus: Now, Voyager is a Hollywood swooner with Bette Davis and Paul Henreid in a melodrama to end all melomers.
Synopsis: Boston heiress Charlotte Vale (Bette Davis) is a neurotic mess, largely because of her domineering mother (Gladys Cooper). But after... [More]
Directed By: Irving Rapper

#60

Brief Encounter (1945)
91%

#60
Adjusted Score: 95958%
Critics Consensus: Brief Encounter adds a small but valuable gem to the Lean filmography, depicting a doomed couple's illicit connection with affecting sensitivity and a pair of powerful performance.
Synopsis: Returning home from a shopping trip to a nearby town, bored suburban housewife Laura Jesson (Celia Johnson) is thrown by... [More]
Directed By: David Lean

#59
#59
Adjusted Score: 96091%
Critics Consensus: Rob Reiner's touching, funny film set a new standard for romantic comedies, and he was ably abetted by the sharp interplay between Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan.
Synopsis: In 1977, college graduates Harry Burns (Billy Crystal) and Sally Albright (Meg Ryan) share a contentious car ride from Chicago... [More]
Directed By: Rob Reiner

#58
#58
Adjusted Score: 95090%
Critics Consensus: This understated romance, featuring good performances by its leads, is both visually beautiful and emotionally moving.
Synopsis: In 1962, journalist Chow Mo-wan (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) and his wife move into a Hong Kong apartment, but Chow's... [More]
Directed By: Kar Wai Wong

#57

La La Land (2016)
91%

#57
Adjusted Score: 121022%
Critics Consensus: La La Land breathes new life into a bygone genre with thrillingly assured direction, powerful performances, and an irresistible excess of heart.
Synopsis: Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone) are drawn together by their common desire to do what they love. But... [More]
Directed By: Damien Chazelle

#56
#56
Adjusted Score: 99518%
Critics Consensus: Endlessly witty, visually rapturous, and sweetly romantic, Shakespeare in Love is a delightful romantic comedy that succeeds on nearly every level.
Synopsis: "Shakespeare in Love" is a romantic comedy for the 1990s set in the 1590s. It imaginatively unfolds the witty, sexy... [More]
Directed By: John Madden

#55
#55
Adjusted Score: 101061%
Critics Consensus: Southside With You looks back on a fateful real-life date with strong performances and engaging dialogue, adding up to a romance that makes for a pretty good date movie in its own right.
Synopsis: Future U.S. President Barack Obama (Parker Sawyers) and lawyer Michelle Robinson (Tika Sumpter) go on a fateful first date in... [More]
Directed By: Richard Tanne

#54
Adjusted Score: 102452%
Critics Consensus: Propelled by Charlie Kaufman's smart, imaginative script and Michel Gondry's equally daring directorial touch, Eternal Sunshine is a twisty yet heartfelt look at relationships and heartache.
Synopsis: After a painful breakup, Clementine (Kate Winslet) undergoes a procedure to erase memories of her former boyfriend Joel (Jim Carrey)... [More]
Directed By: Michel Gondry

#53
#53
Adjusted Score: 102813%
Critics Consensus: Silver Linings Playbook walks a tricky thematic tightrope, but David O. Russell's sensitive direction and some sharp work from a talented cast gives it true balance.
Synopsis: After losing his job and wife, and spending time in a mental institution, Pat Solatano (Bradley Cooper) winds up living... [More]
Directed By: David O. Russell

#52

West Side Story (2021)
91%

#52
Adjusted Score: 111913%
Critics Consensus: Steven Spielberg's West Side Story presents a new look at the classic musical that lives up to its beloved forebear -- and in some respects might even surpass it.
Synopsis: Love at first sight strikes when young Tony spots Maria at a high school dance in 1957 New York City.... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#51
#51
Adjusted Score: 128115%
Critics Consensus: The Shape of Water finds Guillermo del Toro at his visually distinctive best -- and matched by an emotionally absorbing story brought to life by a stellar Sally Hawkins performance.
Synopsis: Elisa is a mute, isolated woman who works as a cleaning lady in a hidden, high-security government laboratory in 1962... [More]
Directed By: Guillermo del Toro

#50

Jules and Jim (1962)
94%

#50
Adjusted Score: 97044%
Critics Consensus: Francois Truffaut's arguable masterpiece in a filmography full of masterpieces ready to be argued for, Jules and Jim is an eternal ode to boundless love.
Synopsis: In the carefree days before World War I, introverted Austrian author Jules (Oskar Werner) strikes up a friendship with the... [More]
Directed By: François Truffaut

#49

The Apartment (1960)
94%

#49
Adjusted Score: 105685%
Critics Consensus: Director Billy Wilder's customary cynicism is leavened here by tender humor, romance, and genuine pathos.
Synopsis: Insurance worker C.C. Baxter (Jack Lemmon) lends his Upper West Side apartment to company bosses to use for extramarital affairs.... [More]
Directed By: Billy Wilder

#48

West Side Story (1961)
93%

#48
Adjusted Score: 104248%
Critics Consensus: Buoyed by Robert Wise's dazzling direction, Leonard Bernstein's score, and Stephen Sondheim's lyrics, West Side Story remains perhaps the most iconic of all the Shakespeare adaptations to visit the big screen.
Synopsis: A musical in which a modern day Romeo and Juliet are involved in New York street gangs. On the harsh... [More]

#47

Amour (2012)
93%

#47
Adjusted Score: 101477%
Critics Consensus: With towering performances and an unflinching script from Michael Haneke, Amour represents an honest, heartwrenching depiction of deep love and responsibility.
Synopsis: Retired music teachers Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant) and Anne (Emmanuelle Riva) have spent their lives devoted to their careers and to... [More]
Directed By: Michael Haneke

#46

Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
93%

#46
Adjusted Score: 105008%
Critics Consensus: Warm, whimsical, and poignant, the immaculately framed and beautifully acted Moonrise Kingdom presents writer/director Wes Anderson at his idiosyncratic best.
Synopsis: The year is 1965, and the residents of New Penzance, an island off the coast of New England, inhabit a... [More]
Directed By: Wes Anderson

#45
#45
Adjusted Score: 94647%
Critics Consensus: Earns its 6 hours running time by telling an engrossing story with compelling characters.
Synopsis: Two close-knit brothers, Nicola (Luigi Lo Cascio) and Matteo (Alessio Boni), are buffeted by the social and political upheavals that... [More]
Directed By: Marco Tullio Giordana

#44

Moonstruck (1987)
94%

#44
Adjusted Score: 98976%
Critics Consensus: Led by energetic performances from Nicolas Cage and Cher, Moonstruck is an exuberantly funny tribute to love and one of the decade's most appealing comedies.
Synopsis: No sooner does Italian-American widow Loretta (Cher) accept a marriage proposal from her doltish boyfriend, Johnny (Danny Aiello), than she... [More]
Directed By: Norman Jewison

#43

Howards End (1992)
94%

#43
Adjusted Score: 99519%
Critics Consensus: A superbly-mounted adaptation of E.M. Forster's tale of British class tension, with exceptional performances all round, Howard's End ranks among the best of Merchant-Ivory's work.
Synopsis: Helen Schlegel falls for Paul Wilcox, but is rebuffed. Her sister Margaret becomes friends with his mother, who promises her... [More]
Directed By: James Ivory

#42

Manhattan (1979)
94%

#42
Adjusted Score: 99681%
Critics Consensus: One of Woody Allen's early classics, Manhattan combines modern, bittersweet humor and timeless romanticism with unerring grace.
Synopsis: Director Woody Allen's love letter to New York City stars Allen as frustrated television writer Isaac Davis, a twice-divorced malcontent... [More]
Directed By: Woody Allen

#41
#41
Adjusted Score: 103073%
Critics Consensus: Enchanting, sweepingly romantic, and featuring plenty of wonderful musical numbers, Beauty and the Beast is one of Disney's most elegant animated offerings.
Synopsis: An arrogant young prince (Robby Benson) and his castle's servants fall under the spell of a wicked enchantress, who turns... [More]
Directed By: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise

#40

Away From Her (2006)
94%

#40
Adjusted Score: 100162%
Critics Consensus: An accomplished directorial debut by Sarah Polley, Away From Her is a touching exploration of the effects of Alzheimer's, in which the tender wisdom of Polley's script is beautifully complemented by a wonderful performance from Julie Christie.
Synopsis: Long married, Fiona (Julie Christie) and Grant (Gordon Pinsent) find their mutual devotion tested by her struggle with Alzheimer's disease.... [More]
Directed By: Sarah Polley

#39

Before Sunset (2004)
94%

#39
Adjusted Score: 101094%
Critics Consensus: Filled with engaging dialogue, Before Sunset is a witty, poignant romance, with natural chemistry between Hawke and Delpy.
Synopsis: A sequel to "Before Sunrise," this film starts nine years later as Jesse (Ethan Hawke) travels across Europe giving readings... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#38

Her (2013)
94%

#38
Adjusted Score: 106661%
Critics Consensus: Sweet, soulful, and smart, Spike Jonze's Her uses its just-barely-sci-fi scenario to impart wryly funny wisdom about the state of modern human relationships.
Synopsis: A sensitive and soulful man earns a living by writing personal letters for other people. Left heartbroken after his marriage... [More]
Directed By: Spike Jonze

#37

Carol (2015)
94%

#37
Adjusted Score: 106473%
Critics Consensus: Shaped by Todd Haynes' deft direction and powered by a strong cast led by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, Carol lives up to its groundbreaking source material.
Synopsis: Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara) spots the beautiful, elegant Carol (Cate Blanchett) perusing the doll displays in a 1950s Manhattan department... [More]
Directed By: Todd Haynes

#36
#36
Adjusted Score: 122319%
Critics Consensus: Call Me by Your Name offers a melancholy, powerfully affecting portrait of first love, empathetically acted by Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer.
Synopsis: It's the summer of 1983, and precocious 17-year-old Elio Perlman is spending the days with his family at their 17th-century... [More]
Directed By: Luca Guadagnino

#35

Romeo and Juliet (1968)
95%

#35
Adjusted Score: 97816%
Critics Consensus: The solid leads and arresting visuals make a case for Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet as the definitive cinematic adaptation of the play.
Synopsis: In the Italian city of Verona, the Montague and the Capulet families are perpetually feuding. When Romeo (Leonard Whiting), a... [More]
Directed By: Franco Zeffirelli

#34

My Fair Lady (1964)
94%

#34
Adjusted Score: 96739%
Critics Consensus: George Cukor's elegant, colorful adaptation of the beloved stage play is elevated to new heights thanks to winning performances by Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison.
Synopsis: In this beloved musical, pompous phonetics professor Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison) is so sure of his abilities that he takes... [More]
Directed By: George Cukor

#33

Weekend (2011)
95%

#33
Adjusted Score: 98074%
Critics Consensus: It may be a chamber piece but Weekend's revelations on modern sexuality expand far beyond the modest setting.
Synopsis: A gay man's (Tom Cullen) weekend-long encounter with an artist (Chris New) changes his life in unexpected ways.... [More]
Directed By: Andrew Haigh

#32
#32
Adjusted Score: 103830%
Critics Consensus: Effectively balancing humor and subtle pathos, Sofia Coppola crafts a moving, melancholy story that serves as a showcase for both Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson.
Synopsis: A lonely, aging movie star named Bob Harris (Bill Murray) and a conflicted newlywed, Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson), meet in Tokyo.... [More]
Directed By: Sofia Coppola

#31
#31
Adjusted Score: 96611%
Critics Consensus: Sumptuous design and perfect casting makes Wuthering Heights an exemplar of old Hollywood studio filmmaking, even if to a fault.
Synopsis: In this adaptation of the classic Emily Bronte novel set in 19th-century England, wealthy young Cathy Earnshaw (Merle Oberon) shares... [More]
Directed By: William Wyler

#30

Stolen Kisses (1968)
96%

#30
Adjusted Score: 98550%
Critics Consensus: Stolen Kisses is a fine feature follow-up to The 400 Blows, transforming Antoine Doinel into a sympathetic, silly, and romantic figure that carries to the series' end.
Synopsis: The third in a series of films featuring François Truffaut's alter-ego, Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud), the story resumes with Antoine... [More]
Directed By: François Truffaut

#29

City Lights (1931)
97%

#29
Adjusted Score: 103394%
Critics Consensus: One of the best underdog romance movies ever, with an ending that will light up any heart.
Synopsis: A hapless but resilient tramp (Charlie Chaplin) falls in love with a blind flower girl (Virginia Cherrill) on the tough... [More]
Directed By: Charles Chaplin

#28
#28
Adjusted Score: 105197%
Critics Consensus: With its magical optical effects and enchanting performances, Jean Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast remains the most surreal -- and soulful -- of the fairy tale's film adaptations.
Synopsis: The story of a gentle-hearted beast in love with a simple and beautiful girl. She is drawn to the repellent... [More]
Directed By: Jean Cocteau

#27
#27
Adjusted Score: 100522%
Critics Consensus: Stairway to Heaven is a ravishing, creative, and exciting fantasy.
Synopsis: British Air Force pilot Peter Carter (David Niven) is on his way home to England from a World War II... [More]

#26

Ninotchka (1939)
97%

#26
Adjusted Score: 100135%
Critics Consensus: With Greta Garbo proving her comedy chops in the twilight of her career, Ninotchka is a can't-miss classic.
Synopsis: A no-nonsense diplomat of the Soviet Union, Nina Ivanovna "Ninotchka" Yakushova (Greta Garbo) arrives in Paris to ensure the sale... [More]
Directed By: Ernst Lubitsch

#25

Roman Holiday (1953)
97%

#25
Adjusted Score: 102207%
Critics Consensus: With Audrey Hepburn luminous in her American debut, Roman Holiday is as funny as it is beautiful, and sets the standard for the modern romantic comedy.
Synopsis: Overwhelmed by her suffocating schedule, touring European princess Ann (Audrey Hepburn) takes off for a night while in Rome. When... [More]
Directed By: William Wyler

#24

Spontaneous (2020)
97%

#24
Adjusted Score: 100005%
Critics Consensus: A dark teen comedy with an explosive twist, Spontaneous reaffirms Katherine Langford as a rising star -- and marks debuting director Brian Duffield as a filmmaker to watch.
Synopsis: When students in their high school inexplicably start to explode, seniors Mara and Dylan struggle to survive in a world... [More]
Directed By: Brian Duffield

#23
#23
Adjusted Score: 101157%
Critics Consensus: Sense and Sensibility is an uncommonly deft, very funny Jane Austen adaptation, marked by Emma Thompson's finely tuned performance.
Synopsis: When Elinor Dashwood's (Emma Thompson) father dies, her family's finances are crippled. After the Dashwoods move to a cottage in... [More]
Directed By: Ang Lee

#22

The Half of It (2020)
97%

#22
Adjusted Score: 103736%
Critics Consensus: For viewers in search of an uncommonly smart, tender, and funny coming-of-age story, The Half of It has everything.
Synopsis: A shy, introverted student helps the school jock woo a girl whom, secretly, they both want.... [More]
Directed By: Alice Wu

#21

Once (2006)
97%

#21
Adjusted Score: 102959%
Critics Consensus: A charming, captivating tale of love and music, Once sets the standard for the modern musical. And with Dublin as its backdrop, Once is fun and fresh.
Synopsis: A vacuum repairman (Glen Hansard) moonlights as a street musician and hopes for his big break. One day a Czech... [More]
Directed By: John Carney

#20

Brooklyn (2015)
97%

#20
Adjusted Score: 107686%
Critics Consensus: Brooklyn buttresses outstanding performances from Saoirse Ronan and Emory Cohen with a rich period drama that tugs at the heartstrings as deftly as it satisfies the mind.
Synopsis: Young Irish immigrant Eilis Lace (Saoirse Ronan) navigates her way through 1950s Brooklyn. Lured by the promise of America, Eilis... [More]
Directed By: John Crowley

#19
#19
Adjusted Score: 100561%
Critics Consensus: My Beautiful Laundrette is fast and all over the place because it has so much to say, and show, including a highly watchable fresh-faced Daniel Day-Lewis.
Synopsis: In a seedy corner of London, Omar (Gordon Warnecke), a young Pakistani, is given a run-down laundromat by his uncle... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Frears

#18
#18
Adjusted Score: 101635%
Critics Consensus: Perfectly cast, smartly written, and beautifully filmed, The African Queen remains thrilling, funny, and effortlessly absorbing even after more than half a century's worth of adventure movies borrowing liberally from its creative DNA.
Synopsis: After religious spinster's (Katharine Hepburn) missionary brother is killed in WWI Africa, dissolute steamer captain (Humphrey Bogart) offers her safe... [More]
Directed By: John Huston

#17

Say Anything... (1989)
98%

#17
Adjusted Score: 100406%
Critics Consensus: One of the definitive Generation X movies, Say Anything... is equally funny and heartfelt -- and it established John Cusack as an icon for left-of-center types everywhere.
Synopsis: In a charming, critically acclaimed tale of first love, Lloyd (John Cusack), an eternal optimist, seeks to capture the heart... [More]
Directed By: Cameron Crowe

#16

Wings of Desire (1987)
98%

#16
Adjusted Score: 101988%
Critics Consensus: Beyond ravishing, Wings of Desire is Wim Wenders' is aching and heartbreaking exploration of how love makes us human.
Synopsis: Two angels, Damiel (Bruno Ganz) and Cassiel (Otto Sander), glide through the streets of Berlin, observing the bustling population, providing... [More]
Directed By: Wim Wenders

#15

Sunrise (1927)
98%

#15
Adjusted Score: 103659%
Critics Consensus: Boasting masterful cinematography to match its well-acted, wonderfully romantic storyline, Sunrise is perhaps the final -- and arguably definitive -- statement of the silent era.
Synopsis: Bored with his wife (Janet Gaynor), their baby and the dull routine of farm life, a farmer (George O'Brien) falls... [More]
Directed By: F.W. Murnau

#14
#14
Adjusted Score: 103037%
Critics Consensus: A delightfully postmodern fairy tale, The Princess Bride is a deft, intelligent mix of swashbuckling, romance, and comedy that takes an age-old damsel-in-distress story and makes it fresh.
Synopsis: A fairy tale adventure about a beautiful young woman and her one true love. He must find her after a... [More]
Directed By: Rob Reiner

#13

Before Midnight (2013)
98%

#13
Adjusted Score: 105552%
Critics Consensus: Building on the first two installments in Richard Linklater's well-crafted Before trilogy, Before Midnight offers intelligent, powerfully acted perspectives on love, marriage, and long-term commitment.
Synopsis: On the last night of their idyllic Greek vacation, longtime lovers Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and Celine (Julie Delpy) reminisce about... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#12
Adjusted Score: 120801%
Critics Consensus: A singularly rich period piece, Portrait of a Lady on Fire finds stirring, thought-provoking drama within a powerfully acted romance.
Synopsis: In 1770 the young daughter of a French countess develops a mutual attraction to the female artist commissioned to paint... [More]
Directed By: Céline Sciamma

#11
Adjusted Score: 104027%
Critics Consensus: Jacques Demy elevates the basic drama of everyday life into a soaring opera full of bittersweet passion and playful charm, featuring a timeless performance from Catherine Deneuve.
Synopsis: Geneviève (Catherine Deneuve), a beautiful young Frenchwoman who works at a small-town boutique selling umbrellas, falls for dashing mechanic Guy... [More]
Directed By: Jacques Demy

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 118398%
Critics Consensus: Capturing its stars and director at their finest, It Happened One Night remains unsurpassed by the countless romantic comedies it has inspired.
Synopsis: In Frank Capra's acclaimed romantic comedy, spoiled heiress Ellie Andrews (Claudette Colbert) impetuously marries the scheming King Westley, leading her... [More]
Directed By: Frank Capra

#9

Casablanca (1942)
99%

#9
Adjusted Score: 115167%
Critics Consensus: An undisputed masterpiece and perhaps Hollywood's quintessential statement on love and romance, Casablanca has only improved with age, boasting career-defining performances from Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman.
Synopsis: Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart), who owns a nightclub in Casablanca, discovers his old flame Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) is in town... [More]
Directed By: Michael Curtiz

#8

Gloria (2013)
99%

#8
Adjusted Score: 104183%
Critics Consensus: Marvelously directed by Sebastian Lelio and beautifully led by a powerful performance from Paulina Garcia, Gloria takes an honest, sweetly poignant look at a type of character that's all too often neglected in Hollywood.
Synopsis: An aging divorcee (Paulina García) embarks on an intense affair with a man (Sergio Hernández) she picked up at a... [More]
Directed By: Sebastián Lelio

#7
Adjusted Score: 102359%
Critics Consensus: Golden Age Hollywood romance doesn't get much better than Letter From an Unknown Woman, a powerful tale of doomed love.
Synopsis: In early 20th-century Vienna, Stefan Brand (Louis Jourdan) is about to leave the city because he faces a duel that... [More]
Directed By: Max Opuls

#6

Cyrano de Bergerac (1990)
100%

#6
Adjusted Score: 101392%
Critics Consensus: Love and hope soar in Cyrano De Bergerac, an immensely entertaining romance featuring Gerard Depardieu as his peak.
Synopsis: Soldier and poet Cyrano de Bergerac (Gérard Depardieu) is in love with Roxane (Anne Brochet), but he's too ashamed to... [More]
Directed By: Jean-Paul Rappeneau

#5

A Room With a View (1986)
100%

#5
Adjusted Score: 102804%
Critics Consensus: The hard edges of E.M. Foster novel maybe sanded off, but what we get with A Room with a View is an eminently entertaining comedy with an intellectual approach to love.
Synopsis: In this British drama based on the novel by E.M. Forster, Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham-Carter), a young Englishwoman, is touring... [More]
Directed By: James Ivory

#4
Adjusted Score: 104126%
Critics Consensus: Deftly directed by Ernst Lubitsch from a smart, funny script by Samson Raphaelson, The Shop Around the Corner is a romantic comedy in the finest sense of the term.
Synopsis: Alfred Kralik (James Stewart) and Klara Novak (Margaret Sullavan) are employees at Matuschek and Company, a general store in Budapest.... [More]
Directed By: Ernst Lubitsch

#3

Before Sunrise (1995)
100%

#3
Adjusted Score: 102541%
Critics Consensus: Thought-provoking and beautifully filmed, Before Sunrise is an intelligent, unabashedly romantic look at modern love, led by marvelously natural performances from Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy.
Synopsis: On his way to Vienna, American Jesse (Ethan Hawke) meets Celine (Julie Delpy), a student returning to Paris. After long... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#2
#2
Adjusted Score: 110453%
Critics Consensus: Clever, incisive, and funny, Singin' in the Rain is a masterpiece of the classical Hollywood musical.
Synopsis: A spoof of the turmoil that afflicted the movie industry in the late 1920s when movies went from silent to... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 112405%
Critics Consensus: Offering a wonderfully witty script, spotless direction from George Cukor, and typically excellent lead performances, The Philadelphia Story is an unqualified classic.
Synopsis: This classic romantic comedy focuses on Tracy Lord (Katharine Hepburn), a Philadelphia socialite who has split from her husband, C.K.... [More]
Directed By: George Cukor

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