The creator of the romcom, while ambiguous, came be traced back to Nora Ephron’s hit, When Harry met Sally, which balanced enthralling romance with hilarious banter between stars Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal.
The creator of the romcom, while ambiguous, came be traced back to Nora Ephron’s hit, When Harry met Sally, which balanced enthralling romance with hilarious banter between stars Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal.
(Photo credit: Ava Radovic/Canva/Achona online)

The Sophomores flirt with their favorite Romcom for Valentine’s day

Valentine’s day is a romantic day to celebrate love in all forms. Whether or not a special someone is there to spend it with, one thing everyone can count on for the romantic day is a fan- favorite romcom. From the iconic red dress Julia Roberts sports in Pretty Woman, to the notorious scene where Katherine Heigl belts out “Bennie and the jets” in 27 Dresses, the romantic comedy genre enthralls viewers across ages, providing memorable works to watch when in need of romance. It is clear the romcom genre is a crucial part of our popular culture, and it is demonstrated through the sophomore class’ passionate picks. 

(10 things I hate about you stars celebrities including: Julia Stiles, Heath Ledger, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Larisa Oleynik)(Photo credit: IMBd)

1). 10 things I hate about you (Kelsey Killogar)

A ‘90s classic and adaptation of William Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew”, 10 things I Hate About You, follows high school two romance plots as younger sister, Bianca Stratford, is determined to date Cameron James, despite her father’s rule against high school romance. He changes the rules regarding dating, allowing Bianca to date only after her older and very cynical sister, Kat Stratford, gets a boyfriend. Cameron then gets notorious trouble-maker, Patrick Verona, portrayed by the late Heath Ledger, to date Kat through a bet. Across secrets and big gestures of love, both the couples discover love, giving both the Stratford sisters their respective happy ending. Throughout the movie, there are numerous memorable scenes, such as Ledger’s performance, singing “I Love You Baby” or when Julia Stiles recites her tear jerking poem as the closing. All in all, this movie has constantly stayed as one of the most well-liked romcoms across generations, and pays homage to Ledger’s incredible versatility when it comes to roles. 

(Supposably, a sequel is being filmed, following Kwan’s novel, China Rich Girlfriend)
(Photo credit: IMBd)

2). Crazy Rich Asians (Clara Napoles)

Crazy Rich Asians is a recent romcom that brought back the sensation of the popular early 2000s that once dominated the screens. An adaptation of Kevin Kwan’s novel of the same name, follows Chinese-American, Rachel Chu, as she travels to Singapore to attend a multimillion dollar wedding and meet her long-time boyfriend, Nick Young’s family. While on the plane ride there, she discovers just how immensely wealthy Nick’s family is, and must try to win the approval of this dynasty. Despite coming from a vastly different environment, Rachel (hilariously) learns to play their games and find a way to have a harmonious relationship with Nick in conjunction with his overbearing mother. Released in 2017, and having an all-asian cast consisting of Awkwafina, Ken Jeong, and Michelle Yeoh, the movie was a hit in the box office, grossing two hundred and thirty-nine million dollars. 

Sophomore Clara Napoles said,  “The Wedding Scene is so pretty. Honestly, I was blown away when the bride stepped into the water while the singer was in the background. That scene is always one that pulls at my heartstrings.” 

(McConaughey is known for his multitudes of rom coms, including The Wedding Planner, Failure to Launch, and Ghosts of Girlfriends’ Past)
(Photo credit: IMBd)

3). How to lose a guy in 10 days (Estella Alvarez)

Deemed as a romcom classic, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, was released in 2003 and stars Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson in a New York City setting. As Hudson’s character, Andy Anderson, attempts to make it in the journalism world, she pitches a story where she must date a guy and have him break up with her within ten days. Simultaneously, McConaughey’s character, Ben Barry, attempts to close a deal with a jewelry partner, and must assure his romantic competence by betting he can make any woman fall in love with him within ten days. The pair ironically choose each other, and must experiment to complete their bet, but instead fall for each other. This movie truly encapsulates the true essence of a romcom, with the trope of a bet starting the relationship, attractive leads such as McConaughey, and the musical rendition of Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain”, Truly bringing in the majority of romcom connoisseurs. 

(Set it up is not Glen Powell’s only newer romcom, as he just recently starred in Anyone But You, opposite Sydney Sweeney) (Photo credit: IMBd)

4). Set it up (Fiona Kaley)

The only Netflix original on the list, Set it Up, stars Glen Powell (Charlie) and Zoey Deutch (Harper), as they portray overworked assistants, tired of constantly trying to please their demanding bosses. In hopes of lessening their workload, the pair set up each of their respective bosses, Lucy Liu and Taye Diggs, and end up forming a close friendship out of the scheme.  Eventually, Charlie and Harper discover they’re the better match over their conniving bosses. Through this film, viewers get to see the incredible chemistry between Powell and Deutch, in addition to giving Netflix one of their higher rated originals, being released on streaming in 2018. This movie demonstrates the controversy over workplace relationships, and also adds in some laughs from supportive characters, like Charlie’s roommate played by Pete Davidson. 

(Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Garner still are friends today, as Garner just made an appearance for Ruffalo’s showing of his star on the Hollywood walk of fame)
(Photo credit: IMBd)

5). 13 going on 30 (Ainsley Kurrack)

13 going on 30 perfectly synthesizes fantasy, true love, and comedy into the 2004 fan favorite. Starring Jennifer Garner as Jenna Rink and Mark Ruffalo as her childhood best friend, Matt Flamhoff, the movie follows the concept of what would happen in life if things played out differently. Jenna begins the movie as an awkward thirteen year old on her birthday, who strongly wishes to skip to her thirties, as she wants to be “thirty, flirty, and thriving”, magically the wish comes true, and Jenna wakes up in her thirty-year old body. Confused with how her life panned out, Jenna scouts out Matt, to find out they stopped being friends and Jenna is not the person she thought she would be. Over the course of the movie, Jenna works diligently to fix her adult life, and attempts to be with Matt, despite his engagement. In the end, the parallel universe works out, giving the audience Jenna and Matt’s happy ending together. All in all, the movie serves as an iconic “chick flick” for fans, with the inclusion of colorful wardrobes, impressive dance numbers to “Thriller”, and heart wrenching scenes that covers the topic of regret. 

(The movie was so successful that it created My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 in 2016, and My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3 in 2023)(Photo credit: IMBd)

6).My big fat greek wedding (Maddie Fox)

Nia Vardalos writes and stars in 2002 box office success, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, which comedically addresses the controversy of marrying outside one’s ethnicity. Vardalos’ character, Toula Portokalos, overcomes her insecurities and transforms her life by gaining confidence and attending college classes. Shortly after her transformation, Toula meets and quickly falls in love with John Corbett’s character, Ian Miller. Ian seems like the perfect match for Toula, but there is one thing he lacks, Greek nationality. Toula must convince her family to accept Ian for who he is, while simultaneously trying to tame their planning as her family plans for a rather extravagant wedding. The movie features numerous quirky characters and scenes, including Toula’s neurotic father, who can trace everything back to Greece, or Toula’s aunt, who passionately tries to feed Ian meat for the holidays, despite him stating he is a vegetarian. The movie intricately ties the importance of family, heritage, and identity into the overall concept of accepting oneself and finding true love despite barriers. 

Maddie Fox (‘26) quotes, “I love all the wacky characters, especially Toula’s dad who uses windex on everything. The Movie perfectly balances comedy into a compelling story.”

(Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler are long time friends, who also star in both Murder Mystery and Murder Mystery 2 together on Netflix)
(Photo credit: IMBd)

7). Just go with it (Anna Hahn)

Perhaps a film that combines more crude humor into the comedy aspect, Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston star in this 2011 romantic comedy. The movie follows Sandler’s Dr.Danny Macabee, who lies and pretends to be in an unhappy marriage to attract women. When the lie doesn’t pan out with his crush played by Brooklyn Decker, Danny’s assistant, Katherine, must pretend to be his soon-to-be ex-wife and incorporate her kids into the ploy. The fake family then travels on a trip to Hawaii to keep up with the tangle of lies, and Danny realizes he is rather in love with Katherine instead of his new girlfriend. This film uses comedic masters Aniston and Sandler to portray the uplifting chemistry of the pair, and uses supporting actress, Nicole Kidman, to make audiences laugh. All in all, the film depicts a true friends-to-lovers story, also demonstrating the complexity of blended families. 

It seems there has been a vast variety of films, with some including more humor, others incorporating supernatural elements, and some adapting Shakespeare into modern cinema. Through these choices, it is seen the diversity in films romcoms produce, and the different feelings viewers can experience while watching these films. 

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