Skip to main content
  1. Life
  2. Society & Culture
  3. Generations

Picking the dozen best romance movies for Valentine’s Day

See also

When’s the last time a movie made you cry? (Admission prices for 3-D blockbusters don’t count)

More Photos

Years ago Hollywood used what were known as melodramas, tearjerkers, or weepies to make their theater turnstiles hum with female patrons, particularly on Valentine’s Day. Their stories relied upon the heroism, sacrifice, and devotion of the lead actors (Always a heterosexual couple in those days) to triumph over misfortune and reunite in time for a heartfelt kiss.

Sometimes they did not, which made their sacrifices and the resultant tragedy seem that much greater. That alternative did not necessarily mean those films were more realistic or truer to life. But if art does imitate life, the depth of a screen couple’s unhappiness was a prime component in the exaltation experienced when their attachment to one another triumphed over adversity—a feeling songwriter Cole Porter referred to as "this thing called love."

Certain narratives and situations tended to be repeated or imitated if the original story or the film adapted from it was successful. Audiences and critics rewarded actors and directors for their work in such films, and expected to see them in similar romantic films. Though they might have been successful in other genres, many of these films are recognized as their finest work.

Film director Sidney Lumet was quoted in an interview with Charlie Rose that “in a well-written drama, the story comes out of the characters. The characters in a well-written melodrama come out of the story." The best romantic films combine both of these elements--the commonplace and the exceptional--to create an unforgettable movie experience.

Here is one baby boomer’s list of a dozen film romances that are almost guaranteed to bring a tear to the eye on Valentine’s Day (All available on video, DVD, or digital streaming).



  • Dead babies found
    Seven dead babies were found in Utah resident Megan Huntsman's old home
    Shocking Discovery
  • Kendall Jenner
    Get the Coachella looks: Kendall Jenner’s nose ring, green hair and edgy nails
    Coachella Look
  • Dog's Easter basket
    How to fill your dog’s Easter basket with the perfect toys
    Easter Basket
  • Rabbit owners
    Bringing home the bunny: Important information for rabbit owners
    7 Photos
  • Haunted island
    The world’s most haunted island may soon be the most haunted luxury resort
    Haunted Resort
  • Sunken ferry
    Search continues for missing passengers after a ferry sinks off the South Korean coast
    Sunken Ferry

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about and apply today!