Love is in the Air: 10 Romantic Movies

Natalia Messmer

“I know that love is unconditional. But I also know that it can be unpredictable, unexpected, uncontrollable, unbearable and strangely easy to mistake for loathing…” (Yvaine, Stardust)

Love is an important part of our life. It can turn a common boy into a hero, break one’s heart or give it wings, reach the stars, travel to another world and beyond, do stupid things or noble deeds. Although there are numerous novels, poems, songs, movies and paintings about that wonderful feeling, new aspects of love are constantly found. Here are some romantic films which became classics of our time.


1. Gone with the Wind (1939)

Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh make a perfect couple as Scarlett O’Hara and Rett Butler, coming through all stages of love, from indifference and prejudices to admiration and desire in spectacular scenery of the American South during the Civil War (based on the novel by Margaret Mitchell, 1936).


2. Sense and Sensibility (1995)

Marianne and Elinor Dashwood are charming young women, dreaming of love and happiness in southwest England. Although their wishes and desires are similar, they see the world in different ways: Elinor is practical and serious, while Marianne is emotional and sensitive and can literally die from love. Will the sisters be happy?

3. Shakespeare in Love (1998)

Young William Shakespeare, a play-writer, accidentally finds love when he meets beautiful Viola, who wants to be an actress in one of his plays. What William does not know: the young woman comes from a noble family who has other prospects for her future, rather than those with a penniless poet…



4. Chocolat (2000)

Single mother Vianne Rocher wanders with her daughter from town to town. In a small French village she opens a chocolaterie. Slowly, life of the inhabitants begins to change: reluctantly trying chocolate delights, townspeople start opening themselves to joy, love and compassion.

 5. Meet Joe Black (1998)

An incredibly romantic and thrilling love story of young doctor Susan and a man called Joe Black, who has a terrible secret. Although there is great affection at first sight between two young people, death has never been nearer to one of them…



6. You’ve Got Mail (1998)

Online dating is nothing new nowadays, but just ten years ago it was something really special. You never know who you are chatting with – it can be your strange neighbor who secretly has a crush on you, business competitor or… a true love!

 7. Stardust

How far can one go for love? Tristan Thorne has decided to take a step into another world: keeping his promise to bring a fallen star for love-of-his-life Victoria, he steps right into an adventure that will change his life… completely.

 8. Return to the Blue Lagoon (1991)

Romantic adventure about two young children, growing into adults on a deserted island. The movie reminds one of the Garden of Eden in Paradise Lost, before Adam and Eve’s fall.

9. All Inclusive (2009)

Romantic comedy about three couples, going to an all-inclusive tropical resort to solve their marriage issues.

10. What Happens in Vegas (2008)

When Joy and Jack got married in Las Vegas after knowing each other for a very short time, it looked like a silly joke without consequences. However, as they filed for divorce, the judge sentenced them to six months of living as a couple…





2 responses to “Love is in the Air: 10 Romantic Movies

  1. I have to admit that I have seen less than half of the movies you listed, but still I think I’d want to add one that is very important to me personally, Garden State (Zach Braff, 2004). Maybe because it’s a movie that seems to go pretty deep when it comes to portraying two young people growing to love each other; maybe because it’s not your typical romantic comedy, nor caters to a possible need for a love-conquers-all-super-feel-good-all-is-well happy ending. Those are what I believe to be the strengths of Braff’s take on what it means to be somewhere in your twenties and realising that there is a life you have to face without the help of parents, teachers or doctors; a life where everyone has a mess of their own to deal with; a life you can only hope to face with a couple of real friends (be they as imperfect or dodgy as they may) standing by your side in the pouring rain, shouting down into a possibly infinite abyss.

    Other than a touching and stunningly realistic depiction of anxiety, alienation, love and friendship the movie also offers some of Braff’s staple choice in accoustic-guitar-pop-rock soundtrack (yeah, the thing some people might want to call indie or alternative rock) and humour – quirky and a tad over-the-top surreal-ish, concerning both dialogues as well as elements of visual comedy.

    So, in case you are in for a not exactly typical romantic movie; if you like to think of love as something that develops and grows (instead of something having to necessarily happen “at first sight”); if you want to see Natalie Portman be cute and wonderful and if you neither mind being confronted with a few scenes featuring the use or trading of psychotropic substances, nor feel offended by a german shepherd’s or bulldog’s need for sexual stimulation, then I don’t see why you shouldn’t give Garden State a shot.

  2. Confession: I can’t stand “What Happens in Vegas…”. 😉

    Two great movies that would make my Romantic Movies List: “The Apartment” and “(500) Days of Summer”. The first one, my favourite film of all time, is a classic gem with one of the most beautiful endings in cinema history; the second, a bit like “Garden State” (good call, by the way, friedrichjo), is a refreshingly honest take on how relationships work.

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