17 rom-coms streaming on Netflix you might've missed — and should definitely watch this Presidents' Day weekend
It’s Presidents’ Day weekend, which means many of us get to enjoy a long weekend. Just coming off of Valentine’s Day, we’re still in the romantic spirit. So there is absolutely no better way to spend this long weekend than curled up at home with some awesome romantic comedies on Netflix. Of course, for rom-com enthusiasts, it can sometimes be hard to find a rom-com that you haven’t seen yet. That in mind, here are a few romantic comedies streaming right now on Netflix that you might not have seen, but totally should — and during this extra long weekend.
1The Incredible Jessica James
Starring the delightful Jessica Williams and the charming Chris O’Dowd, this movie is an adorable, modern romantic comedy that is just a delight to watch. The story centers around aspiring playwright Jessica James (Williams), who strikes up a friendship with a man named Boone (O’Dowd). Jessica and Boone are both on the rebound, and end up striking up an adorable relationship. Unlike a lot of rom-coms, this one feels a bit more grounded in reality, highlighting the natural ebbs and flows of a rebound relationship, and highly prioritizing Jessica’s relationship with her best friend, Tasha (Noel Wells). This movie is definitely a modern rom-com classic.
Nothing says romantic comedy like the queen of the genre herself: Jane Austen. Based on Austen’s novel of the same name, this 1996 flick stars actors like Gwyneth Paltrow, Alan Cumming, and Ewan McGregor and is just a delight. It’s a charming story of a young woman in the 19th century who is so concerned with setting her friends up in relationships that she nearly misses out on love herself. If that story sounds a bit familiar, it’s because another cinematic classic, Clueless, is based on Austen’s novel. So take a trip back to 19th century England and enjoy the original story.
3The Last Five Years
No list of romantic comedies is complete without a musical, right? Originally written for the stage, The Last Five Years stars the wonderful Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan, and tells the story of a five-year relationship between Kendrick and Jordan’s characters, Cathy and Jamie. However, what makes the story unique is that the story of their relationship is told from each of their perspectives, in reverse. The relationship from Cathy’s perspective is told from the end to the beginning, and Jamie’s goes from beginning to end. The music is gorgeous, and the story just sucks you in.
4When We First Met
This Netflix original rom-com stars Adam Devine, Alexandra Daddario, and Robbie Amell. In the film, Pally’s character, Noah, is in love with his best friend, who doesn’t return his feelings. When he gets the ability to re-live the night he met her over and over again, he does everything he can to change his past, and win her heart. While the “trapped in the friend zone” narrative is a bit tough to swallow at first, Noah does evolve away from that idea and learns to see outside of his perspective, making it more fun to watch. It’s an edgy rom-com that addresses the idea of forcing romance and looking outside of your own feelings.
We’re all about Lady Bird director Greta Gerwig these days, so Frances Ha should definitely be on your Netflix rom-com watchlist. Frances Ha tells the story of a young woman living in New York and the relationships she has as she works to chase her dream to be a dancer. Even as she sees her dream dwindle, and even as she wants so much more from her life, she still lives each day with joy and chases happiness wherever she can find it. As with anything that has Greta Gerwig, this film is poignant, emotional, and a total joy to watch.
6Seeking a Friend for the End of the World
A bit of an offbeat addition to our list, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is about, well, the end of the world. Starring Steve Carrell and Keira Knightley, the story centers around Dodge (Carrell) as he attempts to use his final days on the planet to reunite with his high school sweetheart after his wife leaves him. Of course, his plans are derailed when his neighbor Penny (Knightley) tags along, but the results are adorable and give a fun twist to both the romantic comedy and end-of-the-world genre.
7Sleeping with Other People
Starring Jason Sudekis and Alison Brie, Sleeping With Other People is the offbeat story Lainey (Brie) and Jake (Sudekis), two relationally challenged people who haven’t had much success with staying in any long-term romantic relationships. When the two reconnect after years apart, the two decide to keep a completely platonic relationship, despite being attracted to one another. If When Harry Met Sally has taught us anything, that’s easier said than done. The results in Sleeping With Other People are fun to watch and make this smart romantic comedy a must-watch.
8A Royal Night Out
If you’re feeling withdrawal from Netflix’s The Crown, this movie is the perfect film to give you your Queen Elizabeth II fix. A Royal Night Out follows pre-coronation Elizabeth and Margaret on V.E. Day. With the entire nation (and world) celebrating the end of the war in Europe, England’s two Royal Daughters were allowed to join in on the celebration. The film highlights the royal antics that the two get into, the adventures, and the budding romances. It’s a fun, royal adventure, and gives us another look into the fascinating life of Queen Elizabeth II.
9Eagle Vs. Shark
Written by Taika Waititi and starring Flight of the Conchords’ Jemaine Clement, Eagle Vs. Shark is an offbeat romantic comedy that centers around the romance of two socially awkward people. The movie shows their unique romance that builds on getting revenge on old school bullies, video games, and burgers, and it’s the perfect addition to any romantic comedy playlist if you’re looking for a film that’s a bit off the well-worn path of “traditional” romantic comedies.
10I Give It a Year
I Give It a Year is the story of a newlywed couple, Nat (Rose Byrne) and Josh (Rafe Spall). While they’re in the midst of newlywed bliss, their friends and family aren’t so convinced that the couple have found eternal love in one another. As the two approach their first anniversary, they’re forced to look at their relationship and decide if they are indeed meant for each other, or if they’ve made a mistake picking one another. It’s an offbeat rom-com with a stellar cast that is a fun addition to any romantic comedy viewing sesh.
11While We’re Young
While We’re Young has an all-star cast with actors like Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, and Adam Driver. It tells the story of a middle-aged couple living comfortably in New York City. Though they seem happy on the outside, their relationship has cooled over the years, and they’ve found a lack of creative spark in their lives. When they meet a younger married couple, the new perspective injects some energy, life, and creativity into their lives, and promises to shake them all out of their ruts. It’s a fun comedy with an all-star cast that diverts from the traditional romantic comedy format, and is a must-watch.
12Bridget Jones’ Baby
Bridget Jones has been in our lives for years, but in the latest addition to the franchise, we see her finally confront what she really wants in life. Bridget Jones’ Baby is, like the other Bridget Jones movies, focuses on Bridget and a love triangle, but adds in the unexpected twist of an unplanned pregnancy. While the baby is unplanned, Bridget is thrilled. All she has to do is figure out which man is the father, her long-time flame Mark Darcy, or the sexy American she met at a festival, Jack. The movie challenges the idea of what a family looks like, and what a person needs to be truly happy. It’s a sweet story, and the perfect conclusion to a franchise of a woman many of us relate all-too-well with.
Begin Again stars Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo, and centers around the story of a young singer-songwriter who moves to New York with her boyfriend, and a disgraced music executive. When Gretta (Knightley) is dumped by the boyfriend she followed to New York, she has to start over and decide if she wants to stay in New York to chase her own dreams of singing and songwriting or return to her home in England. When Dan (Ruffalo) hears Gretta’s music, he helps her produce an album, and the two develop a sweet, relationship as they grow and learn from each other. Even better? The film has a great soundtrack filled with awesome original songs.
14The Way He Looks
The Way He Looks is an adorable romantic comedy about a blind teenager named Leonardo who is searching for independence. When a new student named Gabriel comes into town, it makes Leonardo question his plans and dreams for his life. This is a great romantic comedy that offers some much-needed LGBT representation in the rom-com genre, but is also a genuinely great film about a search for independence and finding meaning in your life.
15Barefoot in the Park
This romantic comedy classic stars the incomparable Robert Redford and Jane Fonda. Redford plays a conservative lawyer who falls for a free-spirited woman played by Jane Fonda. Barefoot in the Park follows their unique relationship. When the two are married, they find they are incredibly compatible sexually but have to struggle much more to connect on a personal level. Their different perspectives and lifestyles paired with their tiny fifth-floor walk-up make for a delightful comedy of errors as two opposites learn to live and love together.
Ryan Reynolds plays a dad in the middle of a divorce. As he tries to explain the life change to his 11-year-old daughter, he tells her the story of how he and his soon to be ex-wife met and fell in love. As he does, he relives his past romances, but doesn’t say which woman ends up being his daughter’s mother. As the story continues, his daughter interjects with which woman she wants to be her mom. However, once the story gets toward the end, she and her father discuss what makes a truly happy ending. It’s a bittersweet love story, but as just about anything starring Ryan Reynolds, it’s just an adorable film.
17Meet the Patels
This movie tells the story of a 30-year-old Indian man who decides to forgo trying to find love, and after a breakup, allows his parents and extended family to find him the perfect match. It’s a cute story of finding love and dealing with growing up with very traditional parents. It’s also an important movie that highlights the struggles of immigrants as they try to maintain and respect their culture after immigrating. It’s a sweet story that is technically a documentary, but it watches just like a rom-com with a deeper message.
Now, what are you waiting for? Head on over to Netflix!