The Best Romantic Movies To Watch This Valentine's Day

There’s nothing quite like a love story. Finding that special someone is a quintessential part of all of our journeys, as are the trials and tribulations we must go through to be with the one we love. 

The relatable and compelling nature of a good love story is why moviemakers from around the world have relied on this storyline for ages, and will continue to do so far into the future.

If you’re in the mood for some love this Valentine’s Day, here are 40+ of the best romantic movies you can and should watch. Find one that speaks to you, snuggle up on the couch, and enjoy!

The Best Romantic Movies

Below we’re going to introduce you (or remind you of) a little more than 40 romantic movies you can watch this Valentine’s Day. 

But since there are so many to choose from, we’ve broken them up into three categories: general love stories, romantic comedies, and foreign language romantic films. 

This should help make it easier for you to decide which type of love story you want to indulge in with your special someone.

To start, here are some “general romance” movies that are well worth watching this February 14, even if you’ve already seen them.

La La Land


Starring Emma Watson and Ryan Renyolds, this musical-style film is both a lot of fun, hopelessly romantic, and also a bit sad, but in a heartwarming kind of way, if that makes sense. 

It follows the stories of two people living in LA trying to have it all, one as an actress and the other as a musician. They come together and fall in love, and are forced to ask themselves what they really want, and if love needs to be forever for it to matter. 

The winner of several Academy Awards, La La Land will not disappoint if you haven’t seen it. And if you have, a rewatch this Valentine’s Day can’t hurt either.

The Fault in Our Stars 


One of the hardest things to accept about love is that it often doesn’t last. But this doesn’t mean it’s any less valuable. In fact, those fleeting romances can sometimes be the most rewarding. 

This is part of the lesson we learn in The Fault in Our Stars. In truth, this movie is sad. It tells the story of two teenagers, both of whom have been diagnosed with cancer, as they track down an author in Amsterdam they both love. 

When they get there, things don’t quite turn out the way they’d planned. But they learn a valuable lesson about expectations and making the most of life, teaching us viewers some important stuff along the way.



Although the ship sank more than a decade ago, the story of Rose and Jack and their journey on the doomed cruise liner the Titanic is a classic love tale that is worth a rewatch this Valentine’s Day.

Told as a flashback from the elderly Rose, who at the beginning of the movie is in her 90s, this James Cameron epic not only gives you an idea of what it might have been like to sail on the Titanic, but it also is a powerful story about the lengths we will go to for love.

It’s a long one — a little more than three hours — but it’s worth it!



Something we must always remember is that love can be and often is weird. And in case you’ve forgotten this, check out the movie Her starring Joaquim Phoenix. A bit dystopian, the movie centers around a lonely writer who winds up developing feelings for a computer operating system that is designed to meet his every need. 

Yes, it’s weird. We said that already. But Phoenix is fantastic and really brings the story to life. You’ll wind up asking lots of questions along the way, yet you’ll also wind up smiling and laughing a bit at the curious nature of love.

Up in the Air


Based on a novel of the same name, Up in the Air, tells the story of Ryan Bingham, who works for a consulting firm that helps companies fire their workers so that they can downsize/restructure. It’s a somewhat soleless job, but it lets him travel the country, make good money, and live the life he wants to live. It seems like the perfect setup until he meets a woman. 

As you might guess, finding a connection with someone changes his perspective on life. And while this story is a little predictable, there are some elements you might not expect. And George Clooney is his usual self. 

If you want to dive into a slightly unconventional love story, check out this lesser-known classic this Valentine’s Day.

The Shape of Water


Speaking of unconventional, The Shape of Water, a Guillermo del Toro movie starring Sally Hawkins, Octavia Spencer, and Michae Shannon, is an exploration into the limitless nature of love, as well as an homage to how it changes us and what we’ll do to protect it. 

The story centers around the janitorial staff at a government research center that happens upon a top-secret lab where scientists are studying a never-before-seen water creature. 

Dark, beautiful, heartwarming, and sad, this Best Picture winner has a little bit of everything and is a great watch for those looking to share the spirit of love with a special someone.



Animated films made for children don’t always get the respect they deserve, but Up is a completely different case. 

A Pixar original and the film with arguably one of the saddest opening montages of all time, this film is a heartwarming story of how we never stop loving our soulmate, and how opening ourselves up to new forms of love, no matter how unconventional, is always good and extremely healing. 

For those who haven’t seen it, Up tells the story of an old man, disgruntled after the untimely death of his wife, who meets a young boy from down the street and is encouraged to follow the dreams he never had to live out with his sweetheart. 

It’s everything you’d expect from vintage Pixar, and the final message is worth the initial heartbreak.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button


What if you could age backward? Would you want it? It might seem like a cool idea, to get younger as you get older. But there are all sorts of consequences that you likely wouldn’t expect, which we find out about in theThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button, a David Fincher film starring Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, and Tilda Swinton.

Nominated for several Academy Awards, and the winner of three, this movie tells the story of Benjamin Button (Pitt) who is born as an old man and slowly ages backward. Early in his life, he meets a young girl, Daisy (Blanchette), and falls in love. He then spends most of his life trying to get back to her, hoping to meet up with her at just the right time. 

Not only a beautiful love story, but the film is also an interesting exploration of the nature of time, and just how fleeting it can be. A bit sad but also beautiful, and well worth a watch on Valentine’s Day.

Southside with You


If you’re a fan of celebrity romances, at least ones that appear to work out well and provide an example for a healthy relationship, then consider checking out Southside with You, which tells the story of a young Barack Obama and Michelle Robinson when they first met. 

In addition to being a great love story, this movie is also a nice piece of history, giving some powerful insight into the background of the nation’s first Black president and the woman he frequently refers to as the “love of my life.”

Moonrise Kingdom


Wes Andersen isn’t exactly known for his love stories. Films such as The Royal Tenenbaums and The Grand Budapest Hotel, while entertaining, aren’t exactly romances. But the famed director and storyteller gave it a try with Moonrise Kingdom and hit one out of the park.

Set in the fictional New England town of New Penzance, the story follows two kids, both shunned by their peers and caregiver, as they find comfort in one another and fall in love, in an elementary school kind of way.

Featuring an all-star cast that often shows up in Andersen films (Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Frances McDormand, and, this time, Bruce Willis) it’s fantastical, fun, and full of love. Give it a watch. You won’t be disappointed.



Things aren’t always quite what they seem. This is an apt summary for the plot of Atonement, the 2007 film featuring Keira Knightley, James McAvoy, and Saiorise Nolan, who was nominated for the Oscar for best supporting actress. 

The film starts with Knightley’s character witnessing what she thinks is her sister’s lover committing a crime, though she is mistaken. Yet the severity of her accusation dramatically changes the lives of all involved and completely changes the lives of all involved. 

Set in the 19h century, this movie gives you a snapshot of past times, but it will also keep you at the edge of your seat. 

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind


If you want to dive into a love story that will also make you question the nature of your reality and perhaps even make your head hurt a bit, then Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is the film you’ll want to check out this Valentine’s Day. 

Starring Jim Carey in one of his more serious roles, as well as Kate Winslet, this movie tells the story of a lonely man who finds love and loses it and then hires a service to have his memory of his lost lover erased. Of course, things don’t quite go as planned, and some lessons are learned along the way. 

Funny, a bit dark, and interesting the whole way through, this is a different take on a love story that will help spice things up on Valentine’s Day.



Technically billed as a “coming of age” movie, Moonlight, winner of the 2016 Academy Award for Best Picture, is also a story of how our journey to and from love can go on to define our entire lives. 

Also touching on poignant issues such as abuse, racial inequality, and poverty, Moonlight is a deep, dark movie that is wonderful and also informative; it provides a snapshot into modern American life that is far too real for far too many people. 

Somewhat intense, this movie might not be the best choice for those looking to kick back and relax on Valentine’s Day. But if you want an honest look at life and love, this is definitely a film worth watching.

Romeo + Juliet


Romeo + Juliet? Wasn’t that a Shakespeare play your high school English teacher made you read? It was! But that’s not the one we’re talking about. 

Instead, we’re referring to the 1996 rendition starring Leonardo Dicaprio as Romeo and Claire Danes as Juliet. It’s a modern take on this classic love story, which features two “star-crossed lovers” whose families forbid them from being together. 

If you paid attention in high school, you know how this story goes. But it’s still a lot of fun to see this modern remake, and it will make you think about just how far we as people are willing to go to be with those we love.

Romantic Comedies

While some of the movies mentioned above might make you laugh from time to time, that’s not exactly their purpose. Instead, if you want to watch a love story and crack up at the same time, then you need a romantic comedy. 

This is one of the most widely used movie formats in all of Hollywood, so there are a lot to choose from. But to save you some time (and also some cheesy scenes), here are some of the best romantic comedies you should think about watching this Valentine’s Day:

Pretty Woman


Starring Richard Geer and Julia Roberts, Pretty Woman is one of the more iconic romantic comedies of all time. It follows the story of high-profile New York businessman Edward Lewis (Geer) as he gets mixed up with a prostitute, Vivian Ward (Roberts). But his motives are not “to have a good time.” Instead, he runs into her and then, out of happenstance, winds up paying her to be his girlfriend. 

As you might expect, this innocent encounter soon turns into something more, and soon Lewis must face up to the feelings he’s developed for Ward. 

It’s fun, goofy, a bit ridiculous, but also awesome, and perhaps just what you need to watch on Valentine’s Day.

When Harry Met Sally


Another one of the more well-known romantic comedies of all time, When Harry Met Sally tells the story of, well, when Harry (Billy Crystal) met Sally (Meg Ryan). 

They start off as friends, and actually have a fairly classic conversation towards the beginning of the movie as to whether men and women can actually “just be friends.” But when their lives keep bringing them back together, they each start to realize that perhaps they are more important to one another than they first believed. 

Featuring classic funnyman Crystal and romantic comedy all-star Ryan, this movie is equal parts funny and equal parts warm and gushy, i.e. it’s perfect for Valentine’s Day.

The Princess Bride


What could be better than a story of a farm boy and pirate chasing down his one true love who’s been captured? Nothing! It’s inconceivable!

Okay, maybe there is something better. But this 1987 Rob Reiner film starring Mandy Patinkin, Carey Elwes, Robin Wright, and Andre the Giant, has a little bit of everything: magic, sword fighting, riddles, humor, and everything in between. 

If you haven’t seen this one yet, you’re missing out and really need to check it out. And since it’s a story of the powerful motivation that love can provide, why not watch it on the day Cupid comes to strike.

Dirty Dancing


One of the “hottest” romantic comedies of all time, Dirty Dancing, starring Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze is a story of young love, and how adults often have misconceived notions of how their children should pursue happiness. 

Set at a summer resort, Grey and Swayze’s characters find love at an after-hours hangout organized by the resorts’ staff, and they connect through their love of dance. Fun, funny, sexy, and everything in between, it’s a great love story to watch on Valentine’s Day.

Silver Linings Playbook


If you want a love story that will make you think, laugh, and feel all warm and fuzzy inside, then Silver Linings Playbook is for you.

Starring Jennifer Lawrence (who won the Oscar for Best Actress), Bradley Cooper, and Robert De Niro, this movie tells the story of two people and their struggle with mental health. 

It’s crazy and a bit chaotic at times. But isn’t that love? And in addition to being an interesting look at those afflicted with conditions such as bipolar disorder, it’s also a lot of fun to watch. Also, if you’re into sports, the Philadelphia Eagles feature heavily in the storyline, meaning there is something for everyone in this film.

You’ve Got Mail


In reality, if you want a good movie to watch on Valentine’s Day, any Nora Ephron rom-com from the 1990s will do (Sleepless in Seattle, When Harry Met Sally, You’ve Got Mail). But if you had to pick one, go with You’ve Got Mail. 

Weirdly relevant in today’s day-and-age of online dating, this classic starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan (the rom-com duo of the 90s), tells the story of two people, who at first seem to be complete opposites) as they get to know each other online and eventually meet in person. 

It’s funny, romantic, a little cheesy, and everything else you would want from a romantic comedy on Valentine’s Day.

10 Things I Hate About You 


Technically based on Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, this 1990s rom-com starring Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles is a classic young-love story. It follows a group of teenagers as they try to thwart their parents’ rules about dating. 

Although the film starts off with some treachery, true feelings prevail. And Ledger singing “Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You,” to Julia Stiles while she’s at soccer practice is one of the cheesiest yet most iconic scenes of all romantic movies.

Oldies but Goodies

One of the best things about love stories is that they are timeless. It’s one of the reasons why Hollywood keeps coming back to this trope over and over again. But what it also means is that old movies with good love stories still hold up to this day. 

Of course, watching old movies requires a bit of dedication. There are fewer special effects, the dialogue is more important than anything else, and they are usually in black and white. But if you can get used to this, there are some true gems from yesteryear that are well worth watching this Valentine’s Day.

Here are a few worth checking out: 

To Catch a Thief


Starring Grace Kelly and Carey Grant, this 1955 Alfred Hitchcock classic is both a thriller and a love story. In short, a retired jewel thief is forced to prove his innocence, and his journey is, of course, connected to a girl. Enjoy one of the better films from one of Hollywood’s most renowned directors.

Singin’ in the Rain


There once was a time when movies didn’t have sound. And while that sounds strange for us, silent movies were immensely popular. In Singin’ In the Rain, a 1952 movie, two actors who achieved fame in the silent era, are trying to adjust to movies with sound. In the meantime, one of them falls for one of the girls in the chorus, and the rest is history. Filled with music and dancing, this is a true classic from a bygone Hollywood era.



“Of all the gin joints in all the world, she walks into mine,” says Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart), an American expatriate living in Casablanca, Morocco during WWII. 

With this famous line, he is referring to the love of his life, Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman), who is married to another man. During the film, Blaine must make the choice between whether to help Ilsa and her husband or to follow his own selfish desires, a decision we often must face in the game of love. 

Often referred to as one of the best films of all time, this 1942 classic is still as good today as ever. Check it out if you haven’t yet seen it. 

It Happened One Night


Sometimes circumstance is what drives us to love, and that’s exactly what we learn in this 1934 film starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert. 

Stuck on a train from Florida to New York, the movie’s two stars wind up spending a lot of time together and, as you might have guessed, falling for each other. 

Featuring some classic scenes from the early days of Hollywood, and a reminder of what film used to be, It Happened One Night is a heartwarming tale that would be a lot of fun to watch on Valentine’s Day.

Love Stories from Around the World

Another great thing about love stories is that they are universal. Up until now, all the films we’ve discussed have been made in English, either in the U.S. or U.K. But there are lots of other countries in the world, and their moviemakers have done a splendid job over the years telling love stories. 

Here are some of the best foreign-language films to watch this Valentine’s Day:

Il Mare


If you’re looking for a love story that also gets you to question certain aspects of your reality, check out Il Mare, a South Korean film with an Italian title.

The story follows two people across two different timelines who get to know each other, and who also fall in love, at a lakeside house with a mysterious mailbox that allows them to communicate. 

If this sounds familiar, it’s because this movie was adapted into English as The Lake House, though the original is about 1,000 times better.

Portrait of a Lady on Fire


One of the more compelling love stories to be told is that of forbidden love. As we know, there is little that will keep two people truly in love with one another from being together, and the measures they will take to stay connected are often dramatic and inspiring. 

In Portrait of a Lady on Fire, a French movie that won numerous awards around the world, a young, engaged upper-class woman falls in love with the artist who is hired to paint her portrait. Since the artist is also a woman, and this movie takes place in the 19th century, when homosexuality was far more oppressed, you can only imagine the drama. 

In addition to being a well-made movie, Portrait of a Lady on Fire is also a riveting love story that is well worth watching this Valentine’s Day.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon


If you want a movie that tells a love story and that also features some magic and martial arts, then Ang Lee’s classic Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is the perfect film for you this Valentine’s Day. Based on a novel of the same name, the movie follows several different storylines and requires some concentration to follow. But if you can stay focused, you’re in for a treat. The winner of the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film in 2000, and nominated for Best Picture, this movie still holds up and is definitely worth watching. 

Other Foreign Films to Watch

If these foreign language films don’t pique your interest, here are a few more worth watching:

  • If You Are the One (Chinese)
  • Amelie (French)
  • Blue is the Warmest Color (French)
  • Lust, Caution (Mandarin, also by Ang Lee)
  • Life is Beautiful (Italian)
  • Y Tu Mama Tambien (Spanish, México — Alfonso Cuarón's first movie)
  • Omar (Arabic — Palestinian)

Time to Watch Some Movies

This Valentine’s Day, you will of course not have enough time to watch all of these movies. But with so many love stories to choose from, it’s all too easy to pick one that stinks. 

To help you avoid that, and make the most of this special day, we’ve picked through the thousands of films out there and come up with a list that will let you find that perfect movie. Now, grab the popcorn and enjoy!

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