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Valentine’s Day 2019: 40 Best Romantic Movies to Stream on Netflix

Rom-coms may be the genre that everyone loves to hate but romance itself, in all its different shades, is often at the heart of cinema’s greatest stories. Love doesn’t always win—although, in Hollywood, it usually does. But if there is time to indulge love’s schmaltzy side, Valentine’s Day is surely it.

Once upon a time, sharing a romantic movie involved leaving the house. Now, thanks to the miracles of the internet, endless cinematic delights are available at home—ready to be watched with a loved one, a new crush or in splendid isolation.

Back in 2016, Netflix released a Valentine’s Day video calling on people to “Binge Watch for Love,” set to a parody of The Proclaimers’ song “500 Miles”: “I would watch 500 hours for you.”

Such lengths may not be necessary but, to mark the occasion this year, Newsweek has ranked the 40 best romantic movies available to stream on Netflix by analyzing data from critical review aggregation websites Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic and IMDb.

01 Maid in Manhattan Columbia Pictures

40. Maid in Manhattan (2002). Rating: PG-13. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 53.25%. IMDb users: 5.2. Metacritic: 45. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.1. Rotten Tomatoes users: 2.9.
Directed by: Wayne Wang. Starring: Jennifer Lopez, Ralph Fiennes, Natasha Richardson.
Plot summary: A Senatorial candidate falls for a hotel maid, thinking she is a socialite, when he sees her trying on a wealthy woman's dress.

02 Valentine's Day New Line Cinema

39. Valentine's Day (2010). Rating: PG-13. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 54.375%. IMDb users: 5.7. Metacritic: 34. Rotten Tomatoes: 3.8. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.2.
Directed by: Garry Marshall. Starring: Julia Roberts, Jamie Foxx, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Biel, Bradley Cooper, Jessica Alba, Ashton Kutcher, Taylor Lautner, Queen Latifah, Kathy Bates.
Plot summary: Intertwining couples and singles in Los Angeles break-up and make-up based on the pressures and expectations of Valentine's Day.

03 Ibiza Netflix

38. Ibiza (2018). Rating: TV-MA. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 55.75%. IMDb users: 5.2. Metacritic: 56. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.6. Rotten Tomatoes users: 2.8.
Directed by: Alex Richanbach. Starring: Gwen Elizabeth Duchon, Gillian Jacobs, Michaela Watkins, Félix Gómez, Richard Madden.
Plot summary: A young American woman and her two best friends seek out a hot DJ in Spain.

04 What to Expect When You're Expecting Lionsgate

37. What to Expect When You're Expecting (2012). Rating: PG-13. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 56%. IMDb users: 5.7. Metacritic: 41. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.2.
Directed by: Kirk Jones. Starring: Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, Elizabeth Banks, Chris Rock, Rodrigo Santoro, Brooklyn Decker, Matthew Morrison, J. Todd Smith.
Plot summary: Follows the lives of five interconnected couples as they experience the thrills and surprises of having a baby and realize that no matter what you plan for, life does not always deliver what is expected.

05 Dear John Screen Gems

36. Dear John (2010). Rating: PG-13. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 56.25%. IMDb users: 6.3. Metacritic: 43. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 2.9.
Directed by: Lasse Hallström. Starring: Channing Tatum, Amanda Seyfried, Richard Jenkins.
Plot summary: A romantic drama about a soldier who falls for a conservative college student while he's home on leave.

06 Leap Year Universal Pictures

35. Leap Year (2010). Rating: PG. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 57.75%. IMDb users: 6.5. Metacritic: 33. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.2. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.2.
Directed by: Anand Tucker. Starring: Amy Adams, Matthew Goode, Adam Scott.
Plot summary: Anna Brady plans to travel to Dublin, Ireland to propose marriage to her boyfriend Jeremy on Leap Day, because, according to Irish tradition, a man who receives a marriage proposal on a leap day must accept it.

07 Mamma Mia! Universal Pictures

34. Mamma Mia! (2008). Rating: PG-13. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 58.5%. IMDb users: 6.4. Metacritic: 51. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.1. Rotten Tomatoes users: 2.9.
Directed by: Phyllida Lloyd. Starring: Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan, Amanda Seyfried, Dominic Cooper, Stellan Skarsgård, Colin Firth, Julie Walters, Christine Baranski.
Plot summary: The story of a bride-to-be trying to find her real father told using hit songs by the popular 1970s group ABBA.

08 The Kissing Booth Netflix

33. The Kissing Booth (2018). Rating: TV-14. Category: Teen romance.
Total score: 59.625%. IMDb users: 6.2. Metacritic: 40. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.1. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.5.
Directed by: Vince Marcello. Starring: Joey King, Joel Courtney, Jacob Elordi, Carson White.
Plot summary: A high school student is forced to confront her secret crush at a kissing booth.

09 It Started in Naples Paramount Pictures

32. It Started in Naples (1960). Rating: (n/a). Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 60.375%. IMDb users: 6.3. Metacritic: 44. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.6. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.4.
Directed by: Melville Shavelson. Starring: Clark Gable, Sophia Loren, Vittorio De Sica.
Plot summary: A straitlaced Philadelphia lawyer travels to Naples to settle his late brother's estate. A ten year old boy has been orphaned and placed in care of his Aunt Lucia, a nightclub dancer.

10 Life as We Know it Warner Bros.

31. Life as We Know It (2010). Rating: PG-13. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 61.625%. IMDb users: 6.6. Metacritic: 39. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.6. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.5.
Directed by: Greg Berlanti. Starring: Katherine Heigl, Josh Duhamel, Josh Lucas, Brooke Josephson, Melissa McCarthy.
Plot summary: Two single adults become caregivers to an orphaned girl when their mutual best friends die in an accident.

11 Twilight Summit Distribution

30. Twilight (2008). Rating: PG-13. Category: Teen romance.
Total score: 61.75%. IMDb users: 5.2. Metacritic: 56. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.8.
Directed by: Catherine Hardwicke. Starring: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Billy Burke, Taylor Lautner, Kellan Lutz, Ashley Greene, Anna Kendrick.
Plot summary: Bella Swan moves to Forks and encounters Edward Cullen, a gorgeous boy with a secret.

12 Safe Haven Relativity Media

29. Safe Haven (2013). Rating: PG-13. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 62.125%. IMDb users: 6.7. Metacritic: 34. Rotten Tomatoes: 4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.7.
Directed by: Lasse Hallström. Starring: Julianne Hough, Josh Duhamel, Cobie Smulders.
Plot summary: A young woman with a mysterious past lands in Southport, North Carolina where her bond with a widower forces her to confront the dark secret that haunts her.

13 My Best Friend's Wedding TriStar Pictures

28. My Best Friend's Wedding (1997). Rating: PG-13. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 62.625%. IMDb users: 6.3. Metacritic: 50. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.3.
Directed by: P.J. Hogan. Starring: Julia Roberts, Dermot Mulroney, Cameron Diaz, Rupert Everett.
Plot summary: When a woman's long-time friend reveals he's engaged, she realizes she loves him herself and sets out to get him, with only days before the wedding.

14 This Is 40 Universal Pictures

=26. This Is 40 (2012). Rating: R. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 62.75%. IMDb users: 6.2. Metacritic: 59. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.9. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.3.
Directed by: Judd Apatow. Starring: Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann, Maude Apatow, Iris Apatow, Jason Segel, Megan Fox.
Plot summary: Pete and Debbie are both about to turn 40, their kids hate each other, both of their businesses are failing, they're on the verge of losing their house, and their relationship is threatening to fall apart.

15 One Day Focus Features

=26. One Day (2011). Rating: PG-13. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 62.75%. IMDb users: 7. Metacritic: 48. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.2. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.2.
Directed by: Lone Scherfig. Starring: Anne Hathaway, Jim Sturgess, Patricia Clarkson, Jodie Whittaker.
Plot summary: After spending the night together on the night of their college graduation Dexter and Em are shown each year on the same date to see where they are in their lives. They are sometimes together, sometimes not, on that day.

16 Love, Rosie The Film Arcade

25. Love, Rosie (2014). Rating: R. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 65.375%. IMDb users: 7.2. Metacritic: 44. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.7. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.6.
Directed by: Christian Ditter. Starring: Lily Collins, Sam Claflin, Christian Cooke, Jaime Winstone, Suki Waterhouse.
Plot summary: Rosie and Alex have been best friends since they were 5, so they couldn't possibly be right for one another...or could they? When it comes to love, life and making the right choices, these two are their own worst enemies.

17 Sliding Doors Miramax

24. Sliding Doors (1998). Rating: PG-13. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 66.25%. IMDb users: 6.8. Metacritic: 59. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.3. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.4.
Directed by: Peter Howitt. Starring: Gwyneth Paltrow, John Hannah, John Lynch, Jeanne Tripplehorn.
Plot summary: A London woman's love life and career both hinge, unknown to her, on whether or not she catches a train. We see it both ways, in parallel.

18 PS I Love You Warner Bros.

23. P.S. I Love You (2007). Rating: PG-13. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 66.375%. IMDb users: 7.1. Metacritic: 39. Rotten Tomatoes: 4.5. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.9.
Directed by: Richard LaGravenese. Starring: Hilary Swank, Gerard Butler, Lisa Kudrow, Gina Gershon, Harry Connick Jr..
Plot summary: A young widow discovers that her late husband has left her 10 messages intended to help ease her pain and start a new life.

19 Bridget Jones's Baby Miramax

=20. Bridget Jones's Baby (2016). Rating: R. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 66.625%. IMDb users: 6.5. Metacritic: 59. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.3. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.6.
Directed by: Sharon Maguire. Starring: Renée Zellweger, Gemma Jones, Jim Broadbent, Colin Firth, Sally Phillips, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Patrick Dempsey.
Plot summary: Bridget's focus on single life and her career is interrupted when she finds herself pregnant, but with one hitch ... she can only be fifty percent sure of the identity of her baby's father.

20 About a Boy Universal Pictures

=20. About a Boy (2002). Rating: PG-13. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 66.625%. IMDb users: 7.1. Metacritic: 75. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.7. Rotten Tomatoes users: 2.8.
Directed by: Chris Weitz, Paul Weitz. Starring: Hugh Grant, Nicholas Hoult, Toni Collette.
Plot summary: A cynical, immature young man is taught how to act like a grown-up by a little boy.

21 Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging Paramount Pictures

=20. Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging (2008). Rating: PG-13. Category: Teen romance.
Total score: 66.625%. IMDb users: 6.3. Metacritic: 57. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.9. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.8.
Directed by: Gurinder Chadha. Starring: Georgia Groome, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Karen Taylor, Alan Davies, Steve Jones.
Plot summary: The story centers on a 14-year-old girl who keeps a diary about the ups and downs of being a teenager, including the things she learns about kissing.

22 Alex Strangelove Netflix

=18. Alex Strangelove (2018). Rating: TV-MA. Category: Teen romance.
Total score: 66.875%. IMDb users: 6.3. Metacritic: 62. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.2. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.7.
Directed by: Craig Johnson. Starring: Daniel Doheny, Madeline Weinstein, Nik Dodani, Antonio Marziale.
Plot summary: Alex, the high school class president, nerd and a straight A student, has been dating Claire a long time. They decide to sleep together but then he meets a gay guy and gets confused.

23 Pretty in Pink Paramount Pictures

=18. Pretty in Pink (1986). Rating: PG-13. Category: Teen romance.
Total score: 66.875%. IMDb users: 6.8. Metacritic: 57. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.5.
Directed by: Howard Deutch. Starring: Molly Ringwald, Jon Cryer, Annie Potts, Harry Dean Stanton, James Sparr, Andrew McCarthy.
Plot summary: A poor girl must choose between the affections of dating her childhood sweetheart or a rich but sensitive playboy.

24 Set It Up Netflix

17. Set It Up (2018). Rating: TV-14. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 68.625%. IMDb users: 6.5. Metacritic: 62. Rotten Tomatoes: 7. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.7.
Directed by: Claire Scanlon. Starring: Zoey Deutch, Glen Powell, Lucy Liu, Tase Diggs, Joan Smalls.
Plot summary: Two corporate executive assistants hatch a plan to match-make their two bosses.

25 Been So Long Netflix

16. Been So Long (2018). Rating: 15. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 68.875%. IMDb users: 5.4. Metacritic: 74. Rotten Tomatoes: 6.9. Rotten Tomatoes users: 4.1.
Directed by: Tinge Krishnan. Starring: Michaela Coel, Arinzé Kene, George McKay, Ronke Adekoluejo.
Plot summary: A dedicated single mother is charmed by a handsome yet troubled stranger on an unusual night on the town.

26 Chocolat Miramax

15. Chocolat (2000). Rating: PG-13. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 69.875%. IMDb users: 7.3. Metacritic: 64. Rotten Tomatoes: 6. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.6.
Directed by: Lasse Hallström. Starring: Juliette Binoche, Judi Dench, Alfred Molina.
Plot summary: A woman and her daughter open a chocolate shop in a small French village that shakes up the rigid morality of the community.

27 Four Weddings and a Funeral Gramercy Pictures

14. Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994). Rating: R. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 70.25%. IMDb users: 7.1. Metacritic: 81. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.6. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.2.
Directed by: Mike Newell. Starring: Hugh Grant, Andie MacDowell, James Fleet, Simon Callow, John Hannah, Kristin Scott Thomas, Rowan Atkinson, Anna Chancellor.
Plot summary: Over the course of five social occasions, a committed bachelor must consider the notion that he may have discovered love.

28 The Notebook New Line Cinema

13. The Notebook (2004). Rating: PG-13. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 70.375%. IMDb users: 7.9. Metacritic: 53. Rotten Tomatoes: 5.7. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.6.
Directed by: Nick Cassavetes. Starring: Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, James Garner, Gene Rowlands.
Plot summary: A poor yet passionate young man falls in love with a rich young woman, giving her a sense of freedom, but they are soon separated because of their social differences.

29 Our Souls at Night Netflix

=11. Our Souls at Night (2017). Rating: TV-14. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 72.5%. IMDb users: 6.9. Metacritic: 69. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.6. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.8.
Directed by: Ritesh Batra. Starring: ane Fonda, Robert Redford, Judy Greer, Matthias Schoenaerts, Bruce Dern.
Plot summary: A widow and widower have lived next to each other for years, and their lives change when she tries to make a connection with her neighbor.

30 As Good as It Gets TriStar Pictures

=11. As Good as It Gets (1997). Rating: PG-13. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 72.5%. IMDb users: 7.7. Metacritic: 67. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.2. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.5.
Directed by: James L. Brooks. Starring: Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt, Greg Kinnear, Cuba Gooding, Jr.
Plot summary: A single mother and waitress, a misanthropic author, and a gay artist form an unlikely friendship after the artist is assaulted in a robbery.

31 When Harry Met Sally Columbia Pictures

10. When Harry Met Sally... (1989). Rating: R. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 74.25%. IMDb users: 7.6. Metacritic: 76. Rotten Tomatoes: 8. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.5.
Directed by: Rob Reiner. Starring: Billy Crystal, Meg Ryan, Carrie Fisher.
Plot summary: Harry and Sally have known each other for years, and are very good friends, but they fear sex would ruin the friendship.

32 Doctor Zhivago Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)

9. Doctor Zhivago (1965). Rating: PG-13. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 77.25%. IMDb users: 8. Metacritic: 69. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.5. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.9.
Directed by: David Lean. Starring: Omar Sharif, Julie Christie, Geraldine Chaplin, Rod Steiger, Alec Guinness, Tom Courtenay.
Plot summary: The life of a Russian physician and poet who, although married to another, falls in love with a political activist's wife and experiences hardship during World War I and then the October Revolution.

33 Howards End Cohen Media Group

8. Howards End (1992). Rating: PG. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 77.375%. IMDb users: 7.5. Metacritic: 89. Rotten Tomatoes: 8.3. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.7.
Directed by: James Ivory. Starring: Anthony Hopkins, Emma Thompson, Vanessa Redgrave, Prunella Scales, Samuel West.
Plot summary: A businessman thwarts his wife's bequest of an estate to another woman.

34 To All the Boys I've Loved Before Netflix

7. To All the Boys I've Loved Before (2018). Rating: TV-14. Category: Teen romance.
Total score: 77.625%. IMDb users: 7.3. Metacritic: 64. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.4. Rotten Tomatoes users: 4.4.
Directed by: Susan Johnson. Starring: Lana Condor, Noah Centineo, Janel Parrish, Anna Cathcart, Andrew Bachelor.
Plot summary: A teenage girl's secret love letters are exposed and wreak havoc on her love life.

35 Pride and Prejudice Universal Pictures

6. Pride & Prejudice (2005). Rating: PG. Category: Classic romantic movies.
Total score: 78.375%. IMDb users: 7.8. Metacritic: 82. Rotten Tomatoes: 7.7. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.9.
Directed by: Joe Wright. Starring: Keira Knightley, Matthew Macfadyen, Brenda Blethyn.
Plot summary: Sparks fly when spirited Elizabeth Bennet meets single, rich, and proud Mr. Darcy. But Mr. Darcy reluctantly finds himself falling in love with a woman beneath his class. Can each overcome their own pride and prejudice?

36 Silver Linings Playbook The Weinstein Company

5. Silver Linings Playbook (2012). Rating: R. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 80%. IMDb users: 7.7. Metacritic: 81. Rotten Tomatoes: 8.2. Rotten Tomatoes users: 4.1.
Directed by: David O. Russell. Starring: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver, Chris Tucker.
Plot summary: After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.

37 God's Own Country Orion Pictures

4. God's Own Country (2017). Rating: (n/a). Category: Love stories.
Total score: 81%. IMDb users: 7.7. Metacritic: 85. Rotten Tomatoes: 8. Rotten Tomatoes users: 4.2.
Directed by: Francis Lee. Starring: Josh O'Connor, Alec Secareanu, Gemma Jones, Ian Hart.
Plot summary: Spring. Yorkshire. Young farmer Johnny Saxby numbs his daily frustrations with binge drinking and casual sex, until the arrival of a Romanian migrant worker for lambing season ignites an intense relationship that sets Johnny on a new path.

38 Blue Is the Warmest Color Sundance Selects

3. Blue Is the Warmest Color (2013). Rating: NC-17. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 81.25%. IMDb users: 7.8. Metacritic: 88. Rotten Tomatoes: 8.2. Rotten Tomatoes users: 4.1.
Directed by: Abdellatif Kechiche. Starring: Léa Seydoux, Adèle Exarchopoulos, Salim Kechiouche.
Plot summary: Adèle's life is changed when she meets Emma, a young woman with blue hair, who will allow her to discover desire and to assert herself as a woman and as an adult. In front of others, Adèle grows, seeks herself, loses herself, and ultimately finds herself through love and loss.

39 Annie Hall United Artists

2. Annie Hall (1977). Rating: PG. Category: Romantic comedies.
Total score: 82%. IMDb users: 8. Metacritic: 92. Rotten Tomatoes: 9. Rotten Tomatoes users: 3.9.
Directed by: Woody Allen. Starring: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Tony Roberts, Carol Kane, Paul Simon, Shelly Duvall, Christopher Walken.
Plot summary: Neurotic New York comedian Alvy Singer falls in love with the ditzy Annie Hall.

40 Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Focus Features

1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004). Rating: R. Category: Love stories.
Total score: 83.625%. IMDb users: 8.3. Metacritic: 89. Rotten Tomatoes: 8.5. Rotten Tomatoes users: 4.1.
Directed by: Michel Gondry. Starring: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Tom Wilkinson, Elijah Wood, Mark Buffalo, Kirsten Dunst.
Plot summary: When their relationship turns sour, a couple undergoes a medical procedure to have each other erased from their memories.

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