Shelf Help: Rom-Coms

Shelf Help: Live, Love, Laugh For Rom-Coms

Valentines Day is now over. With discounted chocolates, we can all finally breathe a sigh of relief from the endless stream of Valentine’s Day posts. But who says romance has to end there? Too many people celebrate romance on the one designated day only. That’s why we’ve decided to help continue the loving mood with some rom-com suggestions. And for a touch of extra fun, check out our bonus question at the bottom! – Kate MacDonald

Today our Shelfers share: What is your favourite rom-com that makes you laugh and swoon?

Kate & Leopold
I recently watched Kate & Leopold for the first time and felt so foolish for having never seen it because I adored it. For a concept as outlandish as this one – Hugh Jackman plays a 19th-century aristocrat who falls in love with present-day Meg Ryan – I found the entire film incredibly earnest, heartfelt, and incredibly funny. A large part of it is Jackman, who is committed to his fish-out-of-water characterization only for it to beautifully unravel as he becomes intrigued by Ryan’s modernity. Though the ending thoroughly jumps the shark, James Mangold and Steven Rogers’ script makes you want these two crazy kids to fall in love more than anything. Everyone ought to see this forgotten early 2000s gem. – Larry Fried

When Harry Met Sally
While my favourite rom-com is absolutely Miss Congeniality, I must admit I find that film a lot more comedic than romantic. Therefore I gotta go with When Harry Met Sally, because not only does that movie make me laugh out loud, but I *absolutely* swoon over both Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal (I mean, who can’t fall in love with a man singing “The Surrey with the Fringe on Top”?) – Adam Schoales

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Victor/Victoria
When I mention Julie Andrews and musicals, you probably assume I’m talking about The Sound of Music or Mary Poppins. But this under-seen gem is my favourite of her performances. One of the most re-watchable rom-coms of all-time with a perfectly rounded out supporting cast: James Garner, Lesley Anne Warren, and Robert Preston. And it has the additional benefit of being a classic comedy that was ahead of its time (prepare to have weird feelings about Andrews in drag!). – Colin Biggs

Dinner in America
My favourite contemporary rom-com is Dinner in America. It is charming, punk as hell, and never saccharine. Perhaps best of all is when the two lead characters write a song together that is truly excellent. These two might not make a lot of sense from the outside, but together, they help each other make sense. – Deirdre Crimmins

Crazy, Stupid, Love
I recently re-watched Crazy, Stupid, Love and truly could not get over the on-screen chemistry between Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. I’m telling you, there would be no La La Land without it! There’s so much to love about this rom-com, from its references to other classic films to the entire cast’s commitment to the bit. Just perfect. – Julia Lennox 

Crazy Stupid Love

About Time
Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams are perfectly paired in this heartfelt romance that will make even the biggest cynic swoon. With a side of time travel, some genuine laughs, and a super sweet courtship, About Time hits an emotional nerve, not just with its take on romantic love, but familial love as well. – Rachel West 

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The Proposal
My favourite rom-com is The Proposal starring Ryan Reynolds and Sandra Bullock. This movie never fails to make me laugh while also rooting for the couple. Despite being somewhat formulaic and cheesy, the undeniable chemistry between the actors captivates me throughout the entire film. Their innate talent for comedy, combined with the presence of hilarious stars like Betty White, guarantees a good laugh every time I watch it. – KM

Friends with Benefits
I know people hate on J-T nowadays but his chemistry with Mila Kunis is off the charts and the ‘meta-ness’ and more adult nature of the movie makes it more fun to watch than most rom-coms. Special shoutout to the next best rom-com: Music & Lyrics. – Ethan Dayton 

Julie & Julia
Nothing melts my butter quite like Julie & Julia. Meryl Streep whips up a storm as Julia Child and gives one of the best performances of her career as a culinary icon who knows that the true route to the heart is through the belly. Child’s love affair with the kitchen comes alive as Streep chops onions and murders lobsters with the French Chef’s larger-than-life persona while Stanley Tucci is the perfect sous-chef as Child’s husband, Paul, who savours every bite. The film is a perfect pick-me-up that pairs nicely with some bubbly and popcorn with butter. Lots of butter. – Pat Mullen

Julie & Julia

Bonus question! Which actors or actresses would you want to see paired up in a rom-com?

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Rachel Sennott and Molly Gordon – Larry Fried
Rachel Zegler and Gabriel LaBelle – Adam Schoales
Kristin Stewart and Aubrey Plaza – Colin Biggs
Gillian Anderson and Laura Dern – Deirdre Crimmins
Andrew Garfield & Zendaya – Julia Lennox
Colin Farrell and Kate Winslet – Rachel West
Jodie Comer and Sandra Oh – Kate MacDonald
Robert Downey Jr & Rachel McAdams – Ethan Dayton
Paul Mescal and Jeremy Pope (with Meryl as the fun drunk aunt, of course) – Pat Mullen



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