The most hated or most beloved day of the year, depending on your relationship status, is almost here. Valentine's Day is that one day when couples celebrate how wonderful it is to be in love with each other, and single people share a collective “better luck next year” mentality.
Whether you’re finishing up a special night on the town or are simply curled up under a blanket home alone, you’ll need something to help you get through the night on TV. Why not turn to one of Netflix’s many romance movies this year? Sure, the popular streaming site has classics like “Annie Hall,” “Ghost,” “Silver Linings Playbook” and “Sleepless In Seattle,” but it’s also got a number of hidden gems as well. Below are just some of the top choices to stream during the long Valentine's Day weekend.
“Romeo + Juliet”
Admittedly this modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic love story is a bit on the nose, but it’s hard to argue against a young Leonardo DiCaprio professing his love in iambic pentameter. The special woman in your life will love the classic romance and the special man in your life will love John Leguizamo dancing and twirling his pistols. Although it takes place in the modern day, The Bard's words remain unchanged.
“Fools Rush In”
Netflix already did us all a favor by reminding us of how great Matthew Perry is by making the entire “Friends” series available to stream at the beginning of January. In this film he co-stars alongside Selma Hayek as a successful architect who goes to Las Vegas and accidentally gets her pregnant. He’s got to make an honest woman out of her in a hurry but learns quickly that her rich cultural heritage might make that more difficult than it sounds.
Starring Julianne Hough and Josh Duhamel, this film is a romantic movie with a dark twist. It opens with Hough’s character having just committed some kind of bloody crime. With a new name and spunky new haircut, she goes on the run to a small town where she meets Duhamel’s character. The two fall in love just in time for her secret to bring their new life together crashing down around them.
“She’s All That”
This classic 90s romantic comedy set the stage for what became one of the bigger clichés in movie history. However, when you’re among the first and you do it well, you get a pass. Starring Freddie Prinze Jr. as the big shot on campus and Rachael Leigh Cook as the unpopular art student, the story shows that love can come from very unexpected places. Prinze’s character makes a bet to turn any random girl into the most popular and attractive girl on campus. It works, with fortunate side effects.
In this strange romantic comedy, Will Smith plays Alex Hitchens (get it?) who has a successful business helping unlucky guys snag the woman of their dreams. Men simply come to him and he coaches them through to the moment of their first kiss. However, he meets his match when Kevin James’ character proves to be a more difficult client than he’s encountered in the past. Add that to Eva Mendes undoing everything he knows about love and you’ve got yourself a hilarious movie.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars in his screenwriting and directing debut about a young single Italian New Yorker who meets the girl of his dreams in the form of Scarlet Johansson. The only problem is that he might not be ready to give up his single lifestyle… particularly his online porn obsession. The two star in this coming of age love story as Gordon-Levitt’s character slowly realizes that love is better than anything that comes from a search engine.
“The Sweetest Thing”
This is the perfect movie if you’re home alone on Valentines Day, which is totally fine by the way. Cameron Diaz is a single woman living in San Francisco playing the dating game. However, when she starts to realize that actually finding someone to spend your life with is more fun than bouncing from relationship to relationship, she decides to chase after a man she met at a club who was at a bachelor party. After tracking him down to a small town just outside the city, she comes to find out the hard way that it was his bachelor party, and his wedding is mere hours away. This hilarious, and often raunchy, movie is the perfect tonic to give hope to the single people of the world.
OK, it might be slightly difficult to convince your significant other to get on board for a musical. However, once you clear that hurdle, “Rent” is a powerful movie for any romance lover. Set in New York’s Alphabet City in the 1990s, a group of close friends must navigate finding love and themselves in the midst of poverty and the AIDS crisis. The best part of the movie will be calling your loved one out for tapping his or her foot during “La Vie Boheme.”
This one should do it for you based on the cast alone. Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson and Ron Livingston star in this comedy about two co-workers at a brewing company who get along really well and are downright perfect for each other… except for the fact that they are each dating someone else. The story unfolds, as a lot of real-life love stories do, throughout a series of drunken nights of flirting and fun. Eventually the group has to either decide to stay with the people they’re with or go bold and take a risk on one another. It’s an office romance that could rival the likes of Jim and Pam on “The Office.”
“Stardust” is the story of a love struck boy played by Charlie Cox who must leave his quiet life and jump the wall to the other part of his world where magic and fantasy exist. Our hero chases a fallen star beyond the wall in the hopes of impressing the vapid object of his affection only to discover that the star is a beautiful woman. The two embark on a daring adventure to find true love and save the kingdom.