Valentine’s Day is nearly here, and that means that most people would usually be getting ready for rom-com marathons. This year, however, is the year of the singleton! Not one romantic comedy is hitting the big screen this February, with Deadpool, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, and How To Be Single taking up the usual hearts-and-flowers spots.
How To Be Single, especially, is an alternative V-Day choice, chronicling the (mis)adventures of single women in the city. However, it’s not the first time that a movie has put romance on the back burner in favor of friendship.
If you aren’t in the mood for sappy love stories this year, you are sure to enjoy any of these 13 Best Valentine’s Day Movies For Single People.
13. Superbad (2007)
A classic comedy for the single teen, Superbad is a fantastic take on the teen movie trope of unpopular high school students who are out to lose their virginity at any cost. The film takes place over the course of a single night, as three friends try and buy booze for the kind of high school party that only ever happens in movies.
They deal with a liquor store robbery, dumb cops, crazy drinking, and general ridiculousness before even getting to see the girls that they have set their sights on. As well as being a generally funny film (and a reminder that no matter how bad your Valentine’s night is, it’s not as bad as these guys’ evening), it’s more about friendship than hook-ups.
12. For A Good Time, Call… (2012)
This silly, sexy film centers on two very different women who end up moving in together when Lauren (Lauren Powell) is dumped by her boyfriend. Her new roommate, Katie (Ari Graynor), is the kind of wacky, outgoing woman that Lauren would never usually befriend… until she discovers that Katie is also a phone sex operator for extra cash.
With Lauren out of a job, the two end up setting up their own sex line, creating ample opportunities for hilarious situations. While the innuendos fly thick and fast, For A Good Time, Call… is so much more than a cheap joke about sex work. It’s about insecurities, unlikely romance, and figuring out how to go after what you really want, no matter what.
11. The Change-Up (2011)
Sometimes, there is nothing like a good old fashioned magical switcheroo to remind you of what you really want. Following a classic comic set up, The Change-Up introduces us to Mitch (Ryan Reynolds) and Dave (Jason Bateman), two guys who are still best friends despite very different lives.
While Dave is successful, married, and a father, Mitch is an aspiring actor with a lot of different women in his life. After a night out where each admits to being jealous of the other, the two wake up in the morning to find that they have swapped bodies. Cue all the usual switch-up shenanigans as both men learn a little about themselves, as well as learning to appreciate their own lives a lot more.
10. The Banger Sisters (2002)
A reminder that there’s no one right way to grow up, and that friends will always be there (whether you want them to be or not), The Banger Sisters is the perfect comedy for both single ladies and married women.
Suzette (Goldie Hawn) and Vinnie (Susan Sarandon) were the best of friends in their crazy groupie days, but when Suzette is fired and decides to look up her old partner in crime, she finds her the picture of suburban housewife perfection. The two fight to reconnect despite a lot of judgment (on both sides), bringing us a fantastic comedy about friendship, family and growing up.
9. The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)
Rom coms aren’t usually the best bet for single-person V-day viewing, but The 40-Year-Old Virgin is in a class of its own. For starters, this is as much a movies about friendship as it is about romance, as Andy (Steve Carell) starts to open up and make friends with his co-workers. It’s also a nice reminder about the horrors of dating, as Andy deals with contradictory advice, a painful chest wax, awkward dates and generally cringeworthy situations all around.
We also get a look at more than just one relationship, as the rest of the gang are all dealing with their own less-than-perfect love lives. Yes, it has the usual sappy ending, but the crude jokes and lovable characters more than balance that out.
8. I Love You, Man (2009)
The ultimate bromance, I Love You, Man is a great reminder that even when you are in a happy relationship, you need great friends. Peter (Paul Rudd) is getting married, but his search for a best man makes him realize that even with a loving fiancée and a great job, he doesn’t have any real friends. His search to find someone to stand up with him leads him to the wacky Rush fan, Sydney (Jason Segel).
The two then embark on the usual rom-com formula of immediate attraction, misunderstandings, and heart-warming chaos before the big day. A perfect reminder that even the best relationship isn’t everything, I Love You, Man is a perfect bromantic comedy for this V-day.
7. Bridesmaids (2011)
It may seem counter-intuitive to watch a movie about a wedding if you are single on Valentine’s Day, but Bridesmaids is actually all about friendship (the groom doesn’t even get any lines). Annie (Kristen Wiig) isn’t in the best place in her life. Single, living with roommates (weird, strangely close sibling roommates), and with a failed business behind her, she’s definitely not feeling the love.
When her best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) asks her to be her maid of honor, she’s thrilled… but just can’t seem to get anything right. Between the machinations of the scheming Helen (Rose Byrne) and her own ineptitude, Annie ends up fired as maid of honor and living on her mom’s couch. Bridesmaids is worth watching for the heartwarming friendships and the tongue-in-cheek look at wedding planning, and especially for Megan’s (Melissa McCarthy) tough-love speech that will shake anyone out of a Valentine’s funk.
6. Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008)
A lighter look at the pains of being dumped, Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a laugh-a-minute look at what happens when you end up meeting your ex and her new boyfriend on the same Hawaiian vacation that you took to try and forget about her.
Jason Segel is the star of the show as the heartbroken Peter, who just wanted to get away from his feelings, although Russell Brand gives an incredible performance as, well, Russell Brand (a.k.a. a rock star named “Aldous,” who returned to the big screen in the very funny Get Him to the Greek). It’s raunchy, blunt, and hilarious as these two stand off against each other and Peter tries to heal his heartbreak. Although you might put it on for the funnies, there’s a lot of heart here too, and Peter has a few realizations that will hit home for anyone who has ever been dumped.
5. The Help (2011)
This film may be famous for its depiction of the burgeoning civil rights movement in Mississippi in the early 1960s, but The Help also comes with a powerful message about the necessity (or lack thereof) of finding a husband. Skeeter (Emma Stone) has never dated, never been one of those girls that boys fawned over. Instead, she concerned herself with her friends and her education, and eventually with the injustices of segregation. We see her held up against her friends, all married and having babies, and dealing with the pressure from her mother to find a man.
There is so much to this story, and one of the best elements for single ladies is the reminder that marriage and motherhood isn’t always the best option – even if it feels like you are the only one not quite there yet.
4. Wild (2014)
Definitely one for anyone dealing with the post-breakup blues, Wild isn’t a comedy, but it’s an inspirational story about finding yourself after a relationship ends. When Cheryl Strayed (Reese Witherspoon) admitted that she had been cheating on her partner, she heads out to hike the Pacific Crest Trail – all 1,100 miles of it. Through bad weather, aching feet and some very frightening moments, she reminds herself of just what she is capable of, and who she is capable of being.
The film (and the book that inspired it) are raw and unflinching, and might be a better choice for those who aren’t still in the ice cream and crying phase. For anyone looking for a little reminder of the powers of independence, however, Wild is the perfect choice.
3. The First Wives Club (1996)
This film serves up some valuable lessons on friendship… and a little payback on the one who wronged you for good measure! Elise (Goldie Hawn), Brenda (Bette Midler) and Annie (Diane Keaton) are college friends who have drifted apart, but are brought back together by the tragic suicide of their friend, Cynthia (Stockard Channing). They reunite to discover that they have all been left by their husbands, just like Cynthia, and they decide that it’s time for some payback.
As well as the simple (if slightly vindictive) joy of seeing cheating husbands made to pay for their actions, The First Wives Club takes a solid look at loneliness, friendship, and whether vengeance is really worth it in the end.
2. Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood (2002)
Based on the novel of the same name by Rebecca Wells, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood takes us on a journey through generations of women who take care of each other. Centered on four friends (the Ya-Yas) living in Louisiana around the 40s, the film jumps through their lives as friends and the life of Sidalee, one of the YaYa’s daughters. Whether it’s crazy childhood adventures, teenage rebellions, first loves, marriage, or motherhood, the YaYas are always there for each other.
Through their stories, Sidalee (Sandra Bullock) learns about her own mother (and their prickly relationship), as she considers her own engagement. Romance is a part of life, but it’s very much in the back seat for this film about friends, mothers and daughters.
1. Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion (1997)
This brightly-colored ‘90s comedy is the perfect affirmation of friendship over… well, just about anything else. Romy (Mira Sorvino) and Michele (Lisa Kudrow) have been friends forever, loving their slightly alternative (and far from adult) lives. However, when they get an invitation to their high school reunion, they start to think that their fun and funky lifestyle might not look too good to their more traditionally successful classmates.
This film follows them as they try a little too hard to make their lives “better,” remembering all the hell of high school and how they managed to have fun and be themselves because they had each other. It’s sweet, funny, and involves almost no romantic subplots; just a reminder that “perfect” marriages aren’t always so perfect, and even the most romantic moments can be better with your best friend.
Can you think of any other movies that singletons among us could watch this Valentine’s Day weekend? Let us know in the comments!