The Best Romantic Comedies on Netflix Right Now


The romantic comedy can be such a delightful genre when it’s done well. Yes, we know the rules and how they play out, but there’s something comforting in their familiarity and their good-heartedness. While the movies may be cuter than they are sexy (if you’re looking for those recommendations, I suggest heading over to Best Netflix and Chill), they’re still lovely in their own way.

With that in mind, we’ve compiled the best romantic comedies currently streaming on Netflix. So grab a bowl of ice cream and your favorite blanket and snuggle up with a good romcom.

The American President

Director: Rob Reiner

Writer: Aaron Sorkin

Cast: Michael Douglas, Annette Bening, Michael J. Fox, Richard Dreyfuss, and Martin Sheen

Before Aaron Sorkin made The West Wing, he entered the political realm with the delightful romantic comedy The American President. The 1995 film stars Michael Douglas as the widowed U.S. president who strikes up a relationship with a lobbyist, played by Annette Bening. The film delights in chronicling how standard courtship behavior is complicated when you’re the President of the United States, and Douglas and Bening are tremendously charming. You’ll also see the origins of the material that would become the backbone of The West Wing, as the film delves into the inner-workings of the President and his staff. If you want a reminder of a simpler time, or just a breezy romcom set in the world of U.S. politics, you can’t go wrong with this one. – Adam Chitwood

50 First Dates

Image via Sony Pictures

Director: Peter Segal

Writer: George Wing

Cast: Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore, Rob Schneider, Sean Astin, and Dan Aykroyd

As far as Adam Sandler romcoms go, 50 First Dates is pretty great. Released in 2004, the film takes place in Hawaii and follows a veterinarian (Sandler) who crosses paths with a lovely young woman (Drew Barrymore) and has a pleasant day. But when he goes to follow up and ask her on a date the next day, she doesn’t remember who he is. As it turns out, she suffers from short-term memory loss and her memory resets every day. So he spends the rest of the film winning her over day after day to try and strike up a relationship. It’s honestly extremely sweet, and Barrymore and Sandler have great chemistry. – Adam Chitwood

The Half of It

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Image via Netflix

Writer/Director: Alice Wu

Cast: Leah Lewis, Daniel Diemer, Alexxis Lemire, Collin Chou

Netflix has been knocking it out of the park with their young adult romantic comedies lately and Alice Wu’s The Half Of It is no different. It’s been nearly 15 years since Wu debuted her first feature film and it’s a good thing she made her way back to the industry because The Half Of It is an especially well-layered, charming and deeply touching tale of relationships – and not just the romantic kind. The movie stars Leah Lewis as Ellie Chu. She’s an extremely bright student who opts out of having a social life at school. Instead, she puts her time and energy into making some extra cash by writing her classmates’ papers for them. However, when jock Paul Munsky (Daniel Diemer) asks Ellie to write a love letter for him to give to his crush Aster (Alexxis Lemire) instead, it sparks a love/friendship triangle that teaches all three more about each other and themselves than they ever could have expected. It’s an especially nuanced and sensitive exploration of what it means to find “the one,” that ventures well outside the bounds of the cliche understanding of the concept and into territory that’s far more complex, realistic and inspiring. – Perri Nemiroff

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

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Image via Netflix

Director: Susan Johnson

Writer: Sofia Alvarez

Cast: Lana Condor, Janel Parrish, Anna Cathcart, Noah Centineo, Israel Broussard, and John Corbett 

If you’re looking for a fun, sweet, YA romance to brighten your day, you won’t do much better on Netflix than To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. Based off the novel by Jenny Han, the story follows Lara Jean (Lana Condor), a teenager whose worst nightmares are realized when five letters she wrote to her secret crushes are sent out without her knowledge. When she’s confronted by her old crush Peter (Noah Centineo), she’s afraid it could get in the way of her current crush Josh (Israel Broussard), so Lara Jean and Peter resolve to fake a relationship so they can get with who they really want to be with. Naturally, pretending to be together starts to create real feelings between the two. The film is a joy from start to finish, letting you relive a time when who “liked” you was the most important thing in the world, but without any of the trauma high school entails. – Matt Goldberg

Let It Snow

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Image via Netflix

Director: Luke Snellin

Writers: Laura Solon, Victoria Strouse, and Kay Cannon

Cast: Isabela Merced, Shameik Moore, Liv Hewson, Odeya Rush, Jacob Batalon, Kiernan Shipka, Joan Cusack

If you’re in the mood for some seasonal romance, Netflix delivered a bit of a Love Actually for the teen set with Let It Snow, a breezy holiday rom-com that finds a series of overlapping love stories on one fateful Christmas-season snow day. It’s a sweet film from top-to-tail, as interested in the dramas of teen friendship and domestic struggles as it the blossoming romances, and it’s filled with delightful performances from a knockout cast of young up-and-comers. A lot of the Netflix Christmas romances follow in the Hallmark channel vein, and absolutely no judgment if that’s your preferred thing, but for those who want an old-fashioned feel-good holiday romance, Let It Snow is just the ticket.– Haleigh Foutch

About Time

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Image via Universal Pictures

Director/Writer: Richard Curtis

Cast: Domhnall Gleeson, Rachel McAdams, Bill Nighy, Lindsay Duncan, Tom Hollander, and Margot Robbie

The 2013 film About Time is not just an absolute gem of a romantic comedy, it’s also one of the best time travel movies ever made. Oh yeah, and it’s a total tearjerker. Written and directed by Love, Actually filmmaker Richard Curtis, the film stars Domhnall Gleeson as a young man who learns at the age of 21, from his father (Bill Nighy), that the men in their family have the ability to time travel. This comes in handy when he misses his chance with a charismatic American girl (Rachel McAdams) and goes back to the night they first met to start their relationship off right. But what begins as a delightful, grounded, and romantic romp soon turns emotional, as About Time slowly reveals itself to be a father-son story at heart. – Adam Chitwood

Alex Strangelove

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Image via Netflix

Director: Craig Johnson

Writer: Craig Johnson

Cast: Daniel Doheny, Madeline Weinstein, Antonio Marziale, Daniel Zolghadri

There’s something really endearing about the fact Alex Strangelove is an R-rated movie that definitely didn’t need to be rated R. This John Hughes-ian story says “fuck” just a few too many times and is incredibly awkward about sex, as is to be expected from any virginity-crazed kids in their last days of high school. And that’s basically this movie’s story, but with a charming twist: Class president Alex Truelove (affable Daniel Doheny, who is somehow not related to Jay Baruchel) has set a date to lose his virginity to his girlfriend Claire (Madeline Weinstein, who adds wonderful, almost tragic layers to a thin role). But things go awry when Alex meets—and then cannot stop thinking about—an out-and-proud gay high school graduate named Elliot. Things come together a little too perfectly in the climax, but in these times we live in, a movie this concerned with accepting the things that make you different deserves nothing less than a happy ending. – Vinnie Mancuso

Mr. Deeds

Director: Steven Brill

Writer: Tim Herlihy

Cast: Adam Sandler, Winona Ryder, Peter Gallagher, Jared Harris, Allen Covert, and John Turturro

While Adam Sandler movies vary on the “romantic” scale, his 2002 film Mr. Deeds fits squarely into the “romantic comedy” formula. A remake of a 1936 Frank Capra movie, Mr. Deeds stars Sandler as a young man running a pizzeria who discovers he’s the heir to a multibillionaire’s fortune. Winona Ryder plays a reporter for a tabloid TV show who’s tasked with getting close to the titular Mr. Deeds and getting close to him for a story. Their relationship quickly turns genuine, however, and she’s stuck between delivering for her employer and being true to her feelings. Pretty charming stuff! – Adam Chitwood

Set It Up

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Image via Netflix

Director: Claire Scanlon

Writer: Katie Silberman

Cast: Zoey Deutch, Glen Powell, Lucy Liu, and Taye Diggs

If you’re looking for a charming romantic comedy, but don’t want to rewatch something from a previous decade for the umpteenth time, you should definitely give Claire Scanlon’s charming Set It Up a look. The plot follows two beleaguered assistants (Zoey Deutch and Glen Powell) who decided to set up their bosses (Lucy Liu and Taye Diggs, respectively) in order to just get some precious free time away from their demanding jobs. However, with all their scheming, they start to fall for each other. You can see the romcom beats coming from a mile away, but they’re done so well and so effectively that you won’t mind. Plus, the film sizzles thanks to the outstanding performances from the dazzling Deutch and Powell, who should be the streaming generation’s Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks. – Matt Goldberg

The Incredible Jessica James

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Image via Sundance

Writer/Director: Jim Strouse

Cast: Jessica Williams, Chris O’Down, Lakeith Stanfield, Noel Wells

Jessica Williams still hasn’t got the breakout she deserves since her tenure on The Daily Show, but the indie romcom The Incredible Jessica James is the first time since then we’ve got to see her step into a lead role and she just lights up the screen. Now, the character of Jessica James may not be quite as incredible as the title leads you to believe — she’s actually pretty selfish and naive — but she’s passionate, raw and ambitious, and Williams makes you love her in spite of her faults. A supporting performance from the constantly charming Chris O’Dowd certainly doesn’t hurt, and the two have electric chemistry as they try to navigate the waters of heartbreak together toward something healthy and new. Sexy, funny and decidedly modern, The Incredible Jessica James is a refreshing spin on the romcom that doesn’t pander to the lowest common denominator. — Haleigh Foutch

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Director: Edgar Wright

Writers: Michael Bacall & Edgar Wright

Cast: Michael Cera, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Alison Pill, Mark Webber, Johnny Simmons, Ellen Wong, Kieran Culkin, Anna Kendrick, Aubrey Plaza, and Jason Schwartzman.

Edgar Wright’s adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s outstanding comic didn’t find much of an audience upon its release, but over the years it has grown into a cult classic. The movie follows Scott Pilgrim (Cera), a sweet if slightly selfish and misguided young man who falls for delivery girl Ramona Flowers (Winstead). He can only continue to date her if he defeats her seven evil exes. Scott’s comfortable with the video game framework, but the film is really about two people discovering they have to get over their own baggage if they’re going to find new love. Wright decorates the whole picture with video game tropes and fun little nods, but never loses sight of the core romantic story. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is funny, effervescent, and only gets better on repeat viewings. – Matt Goldberg

Always Be My Maybe

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Image via Netflix

Director: Nahnatchka Khan

Writers: Ali Wong, Randall Park, and Michael Golamco

Cast: Ali Wong, Randall Park, Michelle Buteau, James Saito, Daniel Dae Kim, Karan Soni, and Keanu Reeves

Netflix brought the romcom back in a big way with 2018’s Set It Up, and the streaming service’s 2019 effort Always Be My Maybe is similarly charming and delightful. Co-written by and starring Randall Park and Ali Wong, the film follows a pair of teenaged best friends who have since drifted apart and are pushed together once more in adulthood, even though their lives have followed very different paths. Park and Wong are dynamite together, and the film takes time to breathe with some well-paced dramatic sequences. It’s also not lacking in scene-stealers, as Michelle Buteau is a hoot and Keanu Reeves once again proves his talent knows no bounds. – Adam Chitwood

Silver Linings Playbook

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Image via The Weinstein Company

Writer/Director: David O. Russell

Cast: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver, Chris Tucker, and Julia Stiles

While Silver Linings Playbook was billed as an “Oscar movie,” scoring eight nominations including Best Picture, at heart it’s really just a solid romantic comedy. Bradley Cooper plays a man suffering from bipolar disorder who moves back in with his parents after being released from a psychiatric hospital. He meets a recently widowed young woman (Jennifer Lawerence) who vows to help him get back with his ex-wife, but wouldn’t you know it, while training for a big dance competition Cooper and Lawrence accidentally fall in love. It’s charming and offbeat, owing to filmmaker David O. Russell’s unique sensibilities, and Cooper and Lawrence have tremendous chemistry. – Adam Chitwood

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