250 Best Romance Movies of All Time

Romance films, often simply referred to as “romantic movies,” are a beloved and timeless genre in cinema that celebrates the complexities of love, human connection, and the emotional journeys of their characters. This genre is celebrated for its ability to evoke a wide range of emotions, from joy and laughter to tears and heartache, making it a universally cherished and enduring genre in the world of film.

One of the defining features of romance films is their focus on the intricacies of human relationships and the exploration of love in its various forms. These movies often revolve around central love stories, where characters embark on emotional journeys filled with passion, vulnerability, and the pursuit of connection. Whether it’s the exhilarating rush of a new romance, the enduring bonds of long-term love, or the bittersweet pain of lost love, romance films delve into the depths of the heart.

Romance films frequently feature relatable and multi-dimensional characters who grapple with the complexities of love and desire. From star-crossed lovers in “Romeo and Juliet” to unconventional couples in “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” these characters resonate with viewers and reflect the diverse experiences of romance. Their journeys of self-discovery, sacrifice, and personal growth make them endearing and relatable figures.

The genre is known for its ability to evoke strong emotions and create a deep emotional connection with viewers. Through compelling storytelling, authentic dialogue, and genuine chemistry between the characters, romance films have the power to transport audiences into the hearts and minds of the protagonists. The rollercoaster of emotions experienced alongside the characters forms a powerful and lasting bond with the audience.

Romance films encompass a wide range of subgenres, each offering a unique take on love and relationships. From classic tales of star-crossed lovers like “Casablanca” to modern romantic comedies like “When Harry Met Sally” and epic period romances like “Pride and Prejudice,” the genre offers something for every taste and preference.

Moreover, romance films often explore universal themes of self-discovery, personal growth, and the transformative power of love. They encourage viewers to reflect on their own relationships and experiences, fostering empathy and understanding. These films frequently convey messages of hope, resilience, and the enduring nature of love, leaving audiences with a sense of warmth and optimism.

The genre has also made significant contributions to the art of cinematography and storytelling. Romance films are celebrated for their visual beauty, with filmmakers using expertly crafted cinematography and settings to enhance the emotional impact of the love story. Iconic scenes of lovers in picturesque landscapes or intimate moments in candlelit settings have become hallmarks of romance cinema.

In conclusion, romance films are a genre that celebrates the beauty and complexity of love, human connection, and the emotional journeys of their characters. They evoke a wide range of emotions and resonate with audiences on a deeply personal level. With their relatable characters, heartfelt storytelling, and messages of hope and transformation, romance films continue to be cherished and celebrated, reminding us of the enduring power of love in our lives.

Here are 200 of the best Romance movies

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) – IMDb Rating: 8.3

Summary: When their relationship turns sour, a couple undergoes a medical procedure to have each other erased from their memories.

Director: Michel Gondry

Lead Characters:

Joel Barish (Jim Carrey)

Clementine Kruczynski (Kate Winslet)

Amélie (2001) – IMDb Rating: 8.3

Summary: Amélie, an innocent and naive girl in Paris, decides to help those around her and along the way, discovers love.

Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet

Lead Characters:

Amélie Poulain (Audrey Tautou)

Nino Quincampoix (Mathieu Kassovitz)

La La Land (2016) – IMDb Rating: 8.0

Summary: While navigating their careers in Los Angeles, a pianist and an actress fall in love while attempting to reconcile their aspirations for the future.

Director: Damien Chazelle

Lead Characters:

Sebastian (Ryan Gosling)

Mia (Emma Stone)

500 Days of Summer (2009) – IMDb Rating: 7.7

Summary: An offbeat romantic comedy about a woman who doesn’t believe true love exists and the young man who falls for her.

Director: Marc Webb

Lead Characters:

Tom Hansen (Joseph Gordon-Levitt)

Summer Finn (Zooey Deschanel)

Before Sunrise (1995) – IMDb Rating: 8.1

Summary: Two strangers meet on a train and form a connection that evolves into a profound romantic journey through Vienna.

Director: Richard Linklater

Lead Characters:

Jesse (Ethan Hawke)

Celine (Julie Delpy)

Before Sunset (2004) – IMDb Rating: 8.0

Summary: Nine years after their initial meeting in Vienna, Jesse and Celine reunite in Paris and spend an afternoon together.

Director: Richard Linklater

Lead Characters:

Jesse (Ethan Hawke)

Celine (Julie Delpy)

Before Midnight (2013) – IMDb Rating: 7.9

Summary: In Greece, Jesse and Celine confront the strains of their relationship as they spend a summer evening together.

Director: Richard Linklater

Lead Characters:

Jesse (Ethan Hawke)

Celine (Julie Delpy)

Notting Hill (1999) – IMDb Rating: 7.1

Summary: The life of a simple bookshop owner changes when he meets the most famous film star in the world.

Director: Roger Michell

Lead Characters:

William Thacker (Hugh Grant)

Anna Scott (Julia Roberts)

When Harry Met Sally… (1989) – IMDb Rating: 7.6

Summary: Harry and Sally have known each other for years, and are very good friends, but they fear sex would ruin the friendship.

Director: Rob Reiner

Lead Characters:

Harry Burns (Billy Crystal)

Sally Albright (Meg Ryan)

Silver Linings Playbook (2012) – IMDb Rating: 7.7

Summary: After a stint in a mental institution, Pat moves back in with his parents and meets Tiffany, a mysterious widow with problems of her own.

Director: David O. Russell

Lead Characters:

Pat Solatano (Bradley Cooper)

Tiffany Maxwell (Jennifer Lawrence)

About Time (2013) – IMDb Rating: 7.8

Summary: At the age of 21, Tim discovers he can travel in time and change what happens and has happened in his own life.

Director: Richard Curtis

Lead Characters:

Tim Lake (Domhnall Gleeson)

Mary (Rachel McAdams)

The Notebook (2004) – IMDb Rating: 7.8

Summary: A poor yet passionate young man falls in love with a rich young woman, giving her a sense of freedom, but they are soon separated because of their social differences.

Director: Nick Cassavetes

Lead Characters:

Noah Calhoun (Ryan Gosling)

Allie Hamilton (Rachel McAdams)

Her (2013) – IMDb Rating: 8.0

Summary: In a future where technology has advanced, a lonely writer develops an unlikely relationship with an operating system designed to meet his every need.

Director: Spike Jonze

Lead Characters:

Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix)

Samantha (voice) (Scarlett Johansson)

Lost in Translation (2003) – IMDb Rating: 7.7

Summary: A faded movie star and a neglected young woman form an unlikely bond after crossing paths in Tokyo.

Director: Sofia Coppola

Lead Characters:

Bob Harris (Bill Murray)

Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson)

Before We Go (2014) – IMDb Rating: 6.8

Summary: Two strangers in New York City form a bond after one of them misses the last train.

Director: Chris Evans

Lead Characters:

Nick Vaughan (Chris Evans)

Brooke Dalton (Alice Eve)

10 Things I Hate About You (1999) – IMDb Rating: 7.3

Summary: A pretty, popular teenager can’t go out on a date until her ill-tempered older sister does.

Director: Gil Junger

Lead Characters:

Kat Stratford (Julia Stiles)

Patrick Verona (Heath Ledger)

Pride and Prejudice (2005) – IMDb Rating: 7.8

Summary: Sparks fly when spirited Elizabeth Bennet meets a single, rich, and proud Mr. Darcy. But Mr. Darcy reluctantly finds himself falling in love with a woman beneath his class.

Director: Joe Wright

Lead Characters:

Elizabeth Bennet (Keira Knightley)

Mr. Darcy (Matthew Macfadyen)

Amour (2012) – IMDb Rating: 7.9

Summary: Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, who is also a musician, lives abroad with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple’s bond of love is severely tested.

Director: Michael Haneke

Lead Characters:

Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant)

Anne (Emmanuelle Riva)

Carol (2015) – IMDb Rating: 7.9

Summary: An aspiring photographer develops an intimate relationship with an older woman in 1950s New York.

Director: Todd Haynes

Lead Characters:

Carol Aird (Cate Blanchett)

Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara)

Blue Valentine (2010) – IMDb Rating: 7.4

Summary: The film explores a married couple’s relationship over several years, depicting their courtship, marriage, and eventual separation.

Director: Derek Cianfrance

Lead Characters:

Dean Pereira (Ryan Gosling)

Cindy Heller (Michelle Williams)

The Princess Bride (1987) – IMDb Rating: 8.1

Summary: While home sick in bed, a young boy’s grandfather reads him the story of a farmboy-turned-pirate who encounters numerous obstacles, enemies, and allies in his quest to be reunited with his true love.

Director: Rob Reiner

Lead Characters:

Westley (Cary Elwes)

Buttercup (Robin Wright)

About a Boy (2002) – IMDb Rating: 7.0

Summary: A cynical, immature young man is taught how to act like a grown-up by a little boy.

Directors: Chris Weitz, Paul Weitz

Lead Characters:

Will Freeman (Hugh Grant)

Marcus Brewer (Nicholas Hoult)

Moonrise Kingdom (2012) – IMDb Rating: 7.8

Summary: A pair of young lovers flee their New England town, causing a local search party to fan out to find them.

Director: Wes Anderson

Lead Characters:

Sam Shakusky (Jared Gilman)

Suzy Bishop (Kara Hayward)

Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008) – IMDb Rating: 7.1

Summary: Devastated Peter takes a Hawaiian vacation to get over his recent break-up, but he ends up staying at the same hotel as his ex-girlfriend, who is accompanied by her new boyfriend.

Director: Nicholas Stoller

Lead Characters:

Peter Bretter (Jason Segel)

Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell)

The Fault in Our Stars (2014) – IMDb Rating: 7.7

Summary: Two teenage cancer patients begin a life-affirming journey to visit a reclusive author in Amsterdam.

Director: Josh Boone

Lead Characters:

Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley)

Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort)

Titanic (1997) – IMDb Rating: 7.8

Summary: A seventeen-year-old aristocrat falls in love with a kind but poor artist aboard the luxurious, ill-fated R.M.S. Titanic.

Director: James Cameron

Lead Characters:

Jack Dawson (Leonardo DiCaprio)

Rose DeWitt Bukater (Kate Winslet)

A Walk to Remember (2002) – IMDb Rating: 7.3

Summary: The story of two North Carolina teens, Landon Carter and Jamie Sullivan, who are thrown together after Landon gets into trouble and is made to do community service.

Director: Adam Shankman

Lead Characters:

Landon Carter (Shane West)

Jamie Sullivan (Mandy Moore)

Casablanca (1942) – IMDb Rating: 8.5

Summary: In Casablanca, Morocco, during World War II, an American expatriate encounters a former lover, with unforeseen complications.

Director: Michael Curtiz

Lead Characters:

Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart)

Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman)

Roman Holiday (1953) – IMDb Rating: 8.0

Summary: A bored and sheltered princess escapes her guardians and falls in love with an American newsman in Rome.

Director: William Wyler

Lead Characters:

Princess Ann (Audrey Hepburn)

Joe Bradley (Gregory Peck)

Moulin Rouge! (2001) – IMDb Rating: 7.6

Summary: A poet falls for a beautiful courtesan who’s also coveted by a jealous duke.

Director: Baz Luhrmann

Lead Characters:

Christian (Ewan McGregor)

Satine (Nicole Kidman)

The Shape of Water (2017) – IMDb Rating: 7.3

Summary: At a top-secret research facility in the 1960s, a lonely janitor forms a unique relationship with an amphibious creature that is being held in captivity.

Director: Guillermo del Toro

Lead Characters:

Elisa Esposito (Sally Hawkins)

The Asset (Doug Jones)

Ghost (1990) – IMDb Rating: 7.0

Summary: After a young man is murdered, his spirit stays behind to warn his lover of impending danger, with the help of a reluctant psychic.

Director: Jerry Zucker

Lead Characters:

Sam Wheat (Patrick Swayze)

Molly Jensen (Demi Moore)

Dirty Dancing (1987) – IMDb Rating: 7.0

Summary: Spending the summer at a Catskills resort with her family, Frances “Baby” Houseman falls in love with the camp’s dance instructor, Johnny Castle.

Director: Emile Ardolino

Lead Characters:

Baby Houseman (Jennifer Grey)

Johnny Castle (Patrick Swayze)

The Age of Adaline (2015) – IMDb Rating: 7.2

Summary: A young woman, born at the turn of the 20th century, is rendered ageless after an accident. After many solitary years, she meets a man who complicates the eternal life she has settled into.

Director: Lee Toland Krieger

Lead Characters:

Adaline Bowman (Blake Lively)

Ellis Jones (Michiel Huisman)

Me Before You (2016) – IMDb Rating: 7.4

Summary: A girl in a small town forms an unlikely bond with a recently paralyzed man she’s taking care of.

Director: Thea Sharrock

Lead Characters:

Lou Clark (Emilia Clarke)

Will Traynor (Sam Claflin)

The Vow (2012) – IMDb Rating: 6.8

Summary: A car accident puts Paige in a coma, and when she wakes up with severe memory loss, her husband Leo works to win her heart again.

Directors: Michael Sucsy

Lead Characters:

Paige Collins (Rachel McAdams)

Leo Collins (Channing Tatum)

13 Going on 30 (2004) – IMDb Rating: 6.2

Summary: A girl makes a wish on her 13th birthday and wakes up the next day as a 30-year-old woman.

Director: Gary Winick

Lead Characters:

Jenna Rink (Jennifer Garner)

Matt Flamhaff (Mark Ruffalo)

Definitely, Maybe (2008) – IMDb Rating: 7.1

Summary: A political consultant tries to explain his impending divorce and past relationships to his 11-year-old daughter.

Director: Adam Brooks

Lead Characters:

Will Hayes (Ryan Reynolds)

Maya Hayes (Abigail Breslin)

The Time Traveler’s Wife (2009) – IMDb Rating: 7.1

Summary: A Chicago librarian has a gene that causes him to involuntarily time travel, creating complications in his marriage.

Director: Robert Schwentke

Lead Characters:

Henry DeTamble (Eric Bana)

Clare Abshire (Rachel McAdams)

Blue Is the Warmest Color (2013) – IMDb Rating: 7.7

Summary: Adèle’s life is changed when she meets Emma, a young woman with blue hair, who will allow her to discover desire and to assert herself as a woman and an adult.

Director: Abdellatif Kechiche

Lead Characters:

Adèle (Adèle Exarchopoulos)

Emma (Léa Seydoux)

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