My wife and I enjoy watching movies together, but sometimes it is hard to find something we both like. In my experience, men and women enjoy stories and art differently. Nevertheless, sometimes the sexes agree—and especially where a genre has something for both, like the American romantic comedy. Over time, my wife and I have found a few of these that we both love and will watch multiple times.
Every one of these romantic comedies has three elements that set it above the rest and help it to connect with men and women.
- Well-written, witty humor
- Bursts of action, with some physical comedy
- Thoughtful interactions between men and women that lead the story toward love
Here are our top five romantic comedies that both men and women enjoy.
My wife and I loved this movie so much that we went back to the movie theater a second time to see it. It has some of the wittiest dialogue I’ve heard recently in film, and the laughs are doled out evenly between its male and female characters. And there is something wonderful and amusing about watching men fight over women.
Best quote: Ryan Gosling’s character Jacob has some of the best lines. In what follows, he is trying to coach Steve Carell’s middle-aged character on how to be a man.
I’m going to help you rediscover your manhood. Do you have any idea where you could have lost it?
I don’t know whether to help you or euthanize you.
Yes it has “princess” in it, but it also has everything you need: sword fighting, wit, love, and a cynical and fast-talking Sicilian! The Princess Bride has survived a quarter century and continues to be loved by many.
Best Quote: (I don’t think there is any man who doesn’t know this line.)
Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.
Set in the late 80s, Say Anything has an excellent soundtrack and is a great cultural bridge to the 90s. Its director, Cameron Crowe, is one of the few male directors who has been able to connect men and women through his movies through Almost Famous, Elizabethtown, We Bought A Zoo, and Jerry Magwire. That is why he chose John Cusack to play Lloyd Dobler, the everyman. Every young man—every young person—will identify with Lloyd. We empathize with Lloyd Dobler. We cheer for him. We know (or can mumble) every word from Peter Gabriel’s song In Your Eyes because of Lloyd. Lloyd pursues the love of his life and inspires us to do the same.
I am looking for a dare to be great situation.
I never thought a Harlequin-like story could be so appealing to men and women, but it sure is. Kathleen Turner’s excellent voice and Michael Douglas’s rough-and-wild personality take us on a great ride through drug-dealing Colombia. It is no wonder that Bob Zemeckis directed this classic.
Best quote: While Jack and Joan are trying to escape they find a crazy drug lord whom they think has a truck.
Joan Wilder: Can we get there in your car?
Juan: Who told you I had a car?
Joan: The men in the village.
Juan: They told you I had a car? They are such comedians. They meant my little mule: Pepe.
Here is another great Steve Carell performance but it is nowhere near complete without Tina Fey as his lovely, witty wife. It is easy for any married couple to relate to this movie and pick up on the wonderful details in the film. Brooke and I watch it each time and still laugh out loud.
If we are going to pay this much for crab it better sing and dance and introduce us to the Little Mermaid!
High Fidelity, Bull Durham, Lost in Translation, 10 Things I Hate About You, Tin Cup, Love Actually, Four Weddings and A Funeral, Elizabethtown, Jerry Magwire, Almost Famous, For Love of The Game, When Harry Met Sally, and pretty much any Judd Apatow film (although women may disagree with that)
What are your favorite romantic comedies that both you and your significant other can enjoy?