Since it is February now, we have officially embarked upon the season of romance. Valentine’s Day and all the related festivities are just around the corner. However, if you are someone who isn’t really feeling the energy, or you don’t particularly get the hype around the festival, we have you covered.
This week we recommend to you some of the best unconventional rom-coms which went against usual and tired tropes of the genre. These films celebrate love in the little things of life, and leave you with a smile on your face.
Filmmaker Richard Curtis is known for having directed and written some of the best British rom-coms including Love Actually, Four Weddings and A Funeral, Bridget Jones' Diary, and Notting Hill among others. However, with About Time, he took a really high-concept story about time travel and incorporated it with the power of love. A father tells his 21 year old son that he comes from a long lineage of time-travellers who can go back but never forward in time. He uses this newfound power to find love. But what the film actually turns out to be is much more profound, much more heartfelt. It is one of those films that you watch and love. And then you wish you had watched it sooner.
Celeste & Jesse Forever
Celeste and Jesse Forever is one of those criminally underrated films which everyone should have been talking about and should have appreciated more. Starring Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg as the eponymous characters, the film is the story of two best friends who are separated but inseparable. The fact that they are so close months after their separation drives their close friends crazy. However, when Jesse meets someone else, Celeste realises she still has feelings for him. Also starring Elijah Wood and featuring tonnes of big cameos, Celeste and Jesse Forever is the film that you tuck in the back of your head because it broke your heart. You never forget this film, though.
Silver Linings Playbook
Unlike the previous film in this list, Silver Linings Playbook got a lot of attention and appreciation. Jennifer Lawrence won her Best Actress Oscar for this film. However, this film usually gets left out of best rom-com lists. Which, in all honestly it is. The 2012 film is a story of two misunderstood, almost osctracised people who find unlikely companionship with each other. It is a little difficult to exactly pin down the texture of the film without giving away too much. It is just a joyous celebration of love that will linger long after it is over.
One of the highly-anticipated Christmas films of 2020 was Happiest Season, starring Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Davis and a star-studded cast including Alison Brie, Dan Levy, Aubrey Plaza among others. When Harper takes Abby to meet her parents, she reveals that she has not yet come out to her parents. Abby and Harper then have to pretend to be platonic friends/roommates to 'ride out' Christmas. However, this has disastrous results. Happiest Season is aptly representative of the LGBTQ+ community and shows the different experiences of the members. It is also extremely funny. Mary Holland, Dan Levy and Aubrey Plaza have become fan-favourites with fans demanding spin-offs for their characters.
Something’s Gotta Give
Nancy Meyers has an ability to churn out beautiful and glamorous stories out of the very mundane. Her films are also extremely funny, which a lot of times gets lost in all the romance. Something's Gotta Give stars Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton, as a rich playboy Harry and his new fling's mother Erica respectively. After Harry has a heart attack they are forced to spend time together, which leads to blossoming feelings. However, they push each other away. The film shines a beautiful light on older couples and is a refreshing break from watching young people's stories. It also normalises finding love at any age.
The Big Sick
Actor and comedian Kumail Nanjiani's real-life story about meeting his wife Emily Gordon deserves to be in our list because how honest, vulnerable and heartbreaking it is. It has romance, it has comedy but the movie is centred around Kumail's bond with Emily's parents after she goes into a coma. This film is as real as it can get, and hence it is important too. Playing oneself might seem easy, but re-living some of the most traumatic events in your life is surely not a cake walk. The Big Sick definitely makes you glad you watched it, no matter what genre you like.