The romance genre is a concept that has been making its rounds for decades. Experiments ranging from romantic comedies to love-tinged horrors have provided audiences with different tastes of heartwarming stories that can appeal to a broader collection of filmgoers. Films like The Notebook and the Lala Land have earned their praise in recent years, but the title for the "best" is a restless matter.
There are definitely a lot of titles that come to mind when you hear the term romance film. However, IMDb has its own list. Based on the romance genre of a feature film, the following movies are deemed the highest quality, with judgments based on user rating, number of votes, and the overall numerical score. Here are the best romance movies of all time, according to IMDb.
11 The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)
Your mind probably doesn’t jump straight to this one when you think of romance. The 2008 film starring Brad Pitt is deemed a drama, fantasy, and romantic film. It’s a strange story of a man named Benjamin Button who starts aging backward. Naturally, this creates a problem for Benjamin after he falls for a woman named Daisy. He is perpetually doomed to only decrease in age while she grows older. This film has a 7.8 rating on IMDb.
10 Casablanca (1942)
Casablanca is a classic for not only it’s mastermind-level artistry, but simply for the dramatic love story within it. This story has been used as a basis for romantic films that proceed it, hanging on the coattails of a cynical American expatriate, Rick Blaine, and his former lover Isla learned. There are a few movies since this 1942 romantic war-based film that have been able to live up to its potential. Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman cement their legacy with this film. It has an 8.5 rating on IMDb and a Metascore of 100.
9 Groundhog Day (1993)
Starring Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell, 1993's Groundhog Day is a comedic film whose romantic gestures take a front seat in categorizing the film. Initially, this film only had moderate success, but it subsequently received critical acclaim. The story follows a despondent weatherman named Phil Connors who becomes stuck in a time loop, keeping him stranded on the same day, that, of course, being Groundhog Day. His relationship with Rita grows as Phil learns to change his outlook on life and enjoy the things that really matter. Groundhog Day has an eight-star rating on IMDb.
8 Life Is Beautiful (1997)
This 1997 Italian Drama takes place in 1939 during the Holocaust. When Guido Orefice and his son are sent to a concentration camp, the bond between the two becomes the film's central theme, and it carries the film, helping put a heroic spin on this terrorizing moment in world history. Much like its title, this is a beautifully constructed film that not only establishes the love between Guido and Dora, but the love between a man and his son. It has an 8.6-star rating.
7 Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
Silver Linings Playbook came out in 2012 and unexpectedly took audiences for a ride. With Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence at the helm of the film, would you expect anything less? Pat is a bipolar man who has just been released from a psychiatric hospital after his wife files for divorce. While still determined to win back her affections, he meets Tiffany Maxwell who is strangely just as off-balance as he is. The two make an awful couple, but it’s their eccentric similarities that bind the two together to form a relatively normal, yet endearing love story. This movie has won numerous awards, including eight academy award nominations and nominations for five Oscars.
6 Amélie (2001)
Set in Paris, this film is about Amelia, a naïve girl who just wants to help the world around her. After the tragic death of her mother and the schism from her depressed father, Amelia grows up lonely and a bit odd. One day, she discovers an old metal box that contains the memorabilia of a childhood boy that had previously lived in her apartment. She goes on a mission to find this boy and find her place in the world.
When she does, the boy is now an old man, but he relishes in his old memories and decides to reconcile with his estranged daughter and a grandson. Amelia goes on to complete her mission to help others, forming an extraordinary comedic romance that received rave reviews, including at 8.3-star rating on IMDb.
5 Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
When Slumdog Millionaire came out in 2008, it unprecedently blew audiences out of the water. Now known as a classic and a sleeper hit, the tale follows former Slumdog, Jamall, as he works for his chance to win big on the Indian version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? Forcing him to relive his past, his story explores a harden childhood growing up as a street beggar. The story starts and ends with Jamall and Latika's relationship, which uncharacteristically brings them back together after being estranged for so many years.
4 Good Will Hunting (1997)
Good Will Hunting has become known as one of the best pieces of cinematic allegories in history. Written and starring Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, Will Hunting, a school janitor at M.I.T. seals his destiny after solving a confounding math equation. He finds strength and new opportunities with his intelligence, though he routinely finds ways to downplay these gifts.
This feel-good story has all the makings of a romantic film in more ways than one. Will Hunting’s journey explores his internal struggles with the help of a psychologist, Dr. Sean Maguire (Robin Williams). And, despite the film's lack of association with the romantic genre, it’s multi-layered symbolism definitely touches on the subject. It has been nominated for nine Academy Awards and won for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Original Screenplay.
3 Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind stars Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet. The strange and unlikely romantic duo hit a rough patch, and Joel Parish discovers that his long-time girlfriend, Clementine, has decided to undergo a medical procedure to erase Joel from her memories. After he decides to do the same, it forces him to relive their experiences together, ultimately causing him to change his mind mid-procedure. It's a tantalizing and deeply romantic film that forces audiences to reflect on their own intuitions and think what if?
2 Titanic (1997)
Could you even take this list seriously if Titanic didn't make a debut? The true story of the historic ship's demise is moderately overshadowed by the fictitious love story of Jack and Rose. No two characters have yet to match the level of depth and chemistry that Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio bring to the screen in this heart-stopping tale.
Even their ill-fated destiny does not tarnish their escalating predicament when this aristocrat falls in love with an artist below her hierarchy. The story could not have been told better and it will always take the lead when it comes to romantic films.
1 Forrest Gump (1994)
Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump represents the most innocent and coveted perception of love. The naive man with a startlingly low IQ comes from Alabama and finds himself in the center of the world's most daunting historical significances such as Watergate and the Vietnam War. Despite these terminal oversights, Forrest very rarely shows any kind of penchant for negativity. His lust for his childhood crush, Jenny, never sways even through her own faulty steps in her adulthood. Forrest eventually convinces Jenny that everyone deserves to be loved, ultimately creating a conclusion that is only fitting for a good-natured soul like Forrest.