Four Romantic Comedies That Will Not Stress Your Emotions

Here are four romantic comedies that will not stress your emotions. Just sit back and be entertained. If you want great stories, great acting and great direction, try other movies.

Failure to Launch – 2 Stars (Average)

In a desperate attempt to push their 35-year-old son Tripp (Matthew McConaughey) out of the nest, a frustrated mother and father (Kathy Bates and Terry Bradshaw) hire a relationship consultant (Sarah Jessica Parker) to woo him into growing up and taking charge of his life.

What happens in Failure to Launch is the consultant manages to fall in “love” with her client who also becomes reluctantly involved. When he learns her “love” is a fraud, he leaves the family home and ends the relationship. Yes, they do get back together.

This movie is rated PG-13 because there is some sexual content, partial nudity and language. It also should be rated F for funny in a couple of places.

The signature comedic scene happens after Paula (the consultant) jumps into bed with Tripp and she must then explain to her roommate Kit (Zooey Deschanel) what happened. Paula has a policy of not sleeping with her clients.

The conversation takes place at a sporting goods counter and involves guns and ammunition and starts to get funny when the salesman suspects Kit, who is buying a shotgun and shells, is thinking of committing suicide. Kit is actually thinking about shooting a bird that is attacking their apartment, disturbing her peace and quiet.

Failure to Launch is worth watching for the last 25 minutes, when we become emotionally involved and the suspense of what is going to happen next captures our attention.

The director of Failure to Launch (Tom Dey) will arrive when he takes the 25 really good minutes of this film and stretches it out for 2 hours in a romantic comedy with the substance of “Sleepless in Seattle” or “When Harry Met Sally.”

Maid in Manhattan – 2 Stars (Average)

Maid in Manhattan is another J-Lo (Jennifer Lopez as Marisa Ventura) romantic comedy with Ralph Fiennes as Christopher Marshall, a senatorial candidate who thinks Marisa is a socialite.

While it does not appear that J-Lo is about to win any acting awards of substance, this may be her best effort. The script to Maid in Manhattan caught the attention of Sandra Bullock and Hilary Swank, both of whom showed an interest in playing J-Lo’s lead character.

Jennifer Lopez does attract a number of special interest groups.

She was nominated for four awards: The Image Awards for Best Actress, the Razzie Awards for Worst Actress, Kids’ Choice Awards for Favorite Actress, and Teen Choice Awards for Best Comedy Actress, Best Liar and Best Liplock. If you think she has an audience among really young girls, you are right.

For Love or Money – 2 Stars (Average)

Michael J. Fox (as Doug Ireland) and Gabrielle Anwar (as Andy Hart) come together in For Love or Money, a cute, light-hearted romantic comedy of no real substance.

Doug, a concierge for a New York hotel, saves all of his money to open his own hotel. His chief financier, Christian Hanover (Anthony Higgins), is Andy’s married boyfriend. Doug, of course, must decide which is more important, love or money.

Yeah, I know, it is hardly an original story line, but nothing seems original these days. You take what you can get, and For Love or Money makes it an easy, if not significant, entertainment piece.

The Wedding Planner – 2 Stars (Average)

The Wedding Planner is another romantic comedy with J-Lo (Jennifer Lopez as Mary Fiore) and Matthew McConaughey (as Steve Edison). Mary is a wedding planner who is planning Steve’s wedding when she falls for Steve, a handsome doctor. Steve is about to stroll down the aisle with his internet tycoon girlfriend.

Do not spend a lot of time trying to figure out what happens next as the movie progresses.

Hey, like I said, these are four very average flicks you watch for entertainment without getting all stressed out.

Copyright © 2006 Ed Bagley

Romantic Comedies for the Sentimental and Humorous

Unlike most movie genres, romantic comedies are one that can be enjoyed by any. You do not need to be afraid since it does not give you the chills horror movies do; you do not need to be bored over lengthy dramas that only has an ending after long; and you definitely do not need to be on your toes all the time like how crime shows does. Romantic comedies are a combination of the good aspects of both romantic movies and comedy movies.

Romantic movies in general are designed to warm the heart as it touches you with the attraction between two people, or more. There is usually some form of obstacle that occurs between the characters, and the movie would usually show how they overcome the obstacles to show their love for one another. Some of these movies have happy endings, while others may opt for sad endings. Sometimes, it is the bittersweet ones that catch the hearts of many, as it pulls you in emotionally with the characters. Women are usually big fans of these types of movies, as well as anyone who loves sentimental stories.

Comedy, on the other hand, is the type of genre that is made to make you laugh, and for some, keep your mind off stressful matters with a good laugh. Comedic scenes can be created by exaggerating some situation, using languages in a humorous way, the interaction between characters, or simply the character’s actions and personality itself. Comedies can be enjoyed by anyone so long they are in for a good laugh.

When comedy is incorporated into romance, people do not just laugh away or get touched by scenes; they have their time of their lives seeing how romance can spark. The two different movie genres mixed into one movie makes scenes more memorable as two strong emotions of love and humor are stirred among viewers.

Top 10 Romantic Comedies

What are the top 10 romantic comedies of all time? That’s something most romantics would surely love to know so here is list which has been prepared by combining the box office earnings of these films from both domestic and international sources. How many have you seen?

Romantic comedy movies are a sub-group of romantic movies and are notable for being light-hearted and having plots that are often humorous. The path of true love may be thwarted, temporarily, by errors, accidents and coincidences, or by differences in social standing. ‘Notting Hill’ and ‘Pretty Woman’ are examples of romantic comedies.

The romantic comedies are contrasted with romantic drama, a further sub-group of romance films in which the main premise of the movie is concerned with the romantic attraction between the leading characters but not in a funny or humorous way. The attraction often causes them to struggle with significant questions about their lives, such as “should I remain with my current partner?” and “what am I doing with my life?” Dramatic impact is created by the emotional expression of those involved. ‘Titanic’ and ‘The Notebook’ are examples of romantic drama.

The listing below differs slightly from those top domestic earners as some which did well at home performed poorly at theaters in other countries. Others boosted their earnings considerably in the overseas market and greatly improved their ranking.

For instance, Pretty Woman, whilst 4th in domestic earnings, at $178 million, also pulled in a whopping $285 million in the foreign market to grab the top spot overall.

Overseas sales were also extremely important for Notting Hill (with Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts) as it earned ‘only’ $116 on the U.S. domestic market but more than double that ($248 million) internationally to leap up to 7th place.

The Top 10 Romantic Comedies – based on gross earnings (U.S. domestic + international):

1. Pretty Woman (1990) – $463 million
2. Sex And The City (2008) – $415 m
3. What Women Want ((2000) – $374 m
4 There’s Something About Mary ((1998) – $370 m
5. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002) – $369 m
6. Hitch (2005) – $368 m
7. Notting Hill (1999) – $364 m
8. The Proposal (2009) – $315 m
9. Runaway Bride (1999) – $309 m
10. My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997) – $299 m

The queen of romantic comedies is clearly Julia Roberts. She starred in four of the top 10 movies listed above – Pretty Woman (1990), Notting Hill (1999), Runaway Bride (1999) and My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997). The 90s were clearly good for her. Cameron Diaz managed to star in two – There’s Something About Mary (1998) and My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997).

A high production budget is not always a guarantee of success, nor is it a good indicator as Pretty Woman had a budget of only $14 million – Julia Roberts was relatively unknown at the time and her fee for that movie was only $300,000, being mainly known for her role in Steel Magnolias (1989). She was not the first choice for the lead in Pretty Woman, gaining the role only after a number of other, better known, actresses had turned it down as ‘too sexist’ or ‘degrading to women’.

Another movie which far surpassed expectations was My Big, Fat Greek Wedding (2002). It had a budget of only $5 million and earned $241 million at the U.S. box office alone (far surpassing Pretty Woman on $178 million), more than any other romantic comedy. It also earned a respectable $127 million in overseas sales. While not as successful internationally as Pretty Woman (which managed $285 million), it allowed MBFGW to secure the number 5 spot for a modest outlay.

Romantic comedies are hugely popular with the cinema going public, as well as home viewers. A list of the top-rated and successful romantic movies can be a very useful guide in viewer selection.

A Guy’s List of the Best Romantic Comedies From the Past Decade

Any time a guy and a girl want to see a movie together, it is most likely rare that the guy will suggest a romantic comedy. I do not mean to stereotype or make a generalization, but the studios that produce romantic comedies will be the first to admit that their target demographic with this genre of films is females. That is not to say that men cannot enjoy these films, however.

The following are my personal favorite romantic comedies of the last decade.

It is hard to find a funnier romantic comedy out there than Knocked Up. This movie stars Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl as well as the rest of the Judd Apatow camp, including the always hilarious Paul Rudd.

If you are looking for something outside the box, yet still enjoyable, you should consider The Science Of Sleep, directed by Michel Gondry. This film is visually trippy and stars the incredibly talented Gael Garcia Bernal.

Another film that I have to mention is the followup to Richard Linklater’s 1995 cult classic, Before Sunrise. This film is appropriately titled Before Sunset and follows a reencounter between Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy 9 years after their romantic meeting in Paris.

While it is not a traditional romantic comedy, Vicky Christina Barcelona is a great watch for date night. This movie has a star studded cast in Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz and Scarlett Johansson.

Another movie that I must mention on any list of guy-friendly romantic comedies would be the independent feature, New York, I Love You. This movie is actually comprised of 10 short films, all by notable directors and each story is unique, yet totally interesting.

As it stands, this is my list. With so many bad romantic comedies being released every year, it will take an awesome film to supplant any of these.

Best Comedy Movies of 2009

Some most-expected drama movies and action movies failed to draw audiences to the theater, but the comedies of 2009 were well able to do good box office business. Perhaps the recession and economic downturn make people seek laughter during these stress-filled times. Though a few of the comedies of 2009 didn’t have that aura which makes them in the list of funniest movies ever, except Hangover, they somehow kept the box office ringing.

Here is my list of the best comedy movies of 2009:

The Hangover:

This movie by Warner Bros Pictures has earned good money, but not, off course like Avatar. Zach Galifianakis, Bradley Cooper, and Ed Helms in ‘The Hangover’ could keep you laughing for along time. The movie received great reviews and appreciation from different corners of the world. It has been a smash hit worldwide. The film could set a new record for an R-rated comedy, crashing the record set by Beverly Hills Cop nearly 25 years ago. A loud funny movie that every bachelor who wishes to go for a wild bachelors party must watch.

Zombieland:

Columbia Pictures released this apocalyptic zombie film which put up stiff competition to ‘The Hangover’. The way Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg fight each other is really hysterical. A smart script, good acting by newcomers like Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin add flavor to the tone of this comedy. It is a kind of perfect escape from reality and you will have fun watching this movie at home with friends.

Fantastic Mr. Fox:

This is a Fox Searchlight release and is directed by Wes Anderson. Although the trailer didn’t raise that much initial interest with the audiences, the movie didn’t disappoint at the theater. There is nothing too freaky in the plot, and the movie comes to life as you watch it. This is an animated film for adults as the humor is a bit too much over the heads of the kid crowd. A witty and highly entertaining movie for the 2009 movie year!

Up:

This is another animated movie from Disney/Pixar. Millions already have fallen in love with the old fellow who flies with balloons and the small obnoxious kid explorer who accompanies the old man on this adventure. The movie is touching and funny, and the animation is gorgeous to look at. It takes you on an emotional journey as well as keeps tickling your funny side to make you stick to the screen.

500 Days of Summer:

Another release from Fox Searchlight. This is a romantic comedy and one of the best intelligent romantic comedies of the 2009 film year! Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a hard working greeting card writer who believes in love at first sight while Zooey Deschanel, a free-spirited woman, doesn’t. Find out what clicks between the two in this comedy.

Some other comedy movies worth watching of 2009 are ‘The Proposal’, ‘The Informant’ and ‘Ghosts of Girlfriends Past.’ All should not disappoint.

Romantic Comedies That Make Men Laugh

Most of the men I know take their wives or girlfriends to see the newest romantic comedy with less than enthusiastic hearts. I wanted to share this little bit of advise to the men and women out there who love movies, but maybe not the same genre of movie. There are romantic comedies out there that most assuredly amuse both men and women.

The films are written and/or directed by two women; Nora Ephron and Nancy Meyers. If a new comedy has either of these names connected to it, we are off to the theater. As more mature adults (gray-heads), we don’t venture to the theater for many movies these days because we generally leave the theater with a bad case of culture shock.

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and it’s a day when we want to do something particularly romantic for one another. There are a ton of romantic ideas floating out there, but if your life is filled with busyness, just sitting down and watching a movie can be a real treat.

Here is a short list of Nora Ephron films:

Julie & Julia (2009)

Meryl Streep & Amy Adams: the parallel lives of Julie (a New York blogger who cooked every recipe in Julia Child’s cookbook in 2002) and Julia (masterfully played by Meryl Street) whose life in France with husband Paul and the Cordon Blue Cooking School are chronicled. Lots of great laughs.

You’ve Got Mail (1998)

Meg Ryan & Tom Hanks: this is a remake of an old Jimmy Stewart film called, “The Shop Around the Corner” that was released around 1936. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan are emailing one another after meeting in a chat room even though they are both book sellers (Tom Hanks puts Meg out of business) they don’t know the identity of one another for quite some time in this story line. Delightfully funny and romantic.

Sleepless in Seattle (1993)

Meg Ryan & Tom Hanks: Do you believe in destiny? How can two people who live on either side of the country be romantically connected even though they have never met? If you believe it was destiny who shoved you together with your mate, then you’ll love the monumental hurdles these two overcame to get together.

When Harry Met Sally (1989)

Meg Ryan & Billy Crystal: This lovable little romantic film is chuck-full of barbed quips between two people who meet in college and run into one another every five years until they become good friends. Can a man and woman remain good friends after having sex? That is the threaded discussion played out in this film.

Here is a short list of Nancy Meyers films:

It’s Complicated (2009) still in theaters

Meryl Streep & Alec Baldwin: My husband I have been to the theater twice to see this one; it’s absolutely hilarious. Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin have been divorced for 10 years, but get back together at their son’s college graduation. Even though Alec Baldwin is married to a much younger woman, he longs for the family he left behind. However, there is plenty of hilarious conflict to keep any man awake and laughing to the end. Do they stay together? This one is a MUST see!

The Holiday (2006)

Cameron Diaz & Jude Law; Kate Winslet & Jack Black: The trailers for this film didn’t interest us, so we waited for it to come out on DVD before seeing it. Kate Winslet has been dealt a blow by her foolish boyfriend in England as has Cameron Diaz in L.A. Through the magic of the Internet, they swap houses for the Christmas to New Year holiday and find love when they weren’t looking for it. The plot may be simplistic, but the masterful editing keeps your interest to the end. Do they maintain their long-distance relationships after the New Year? Delightful.

Something’s Gotta Give (2003)

Diane Keaton & Jack Nicholson: Jack Nicholson is playing himself in this film (based on everything I’ve read about his reputation). He is a philandering bachelor who is fast-approaching later life. He ends up at Diane Keaton’s beach house because he is dating her daughter (Amanda Peet). He suffers a heart attack while there and Diane Keaton is left in charge of his recovery. They fall in love (much to their surprise), but Jack has some huge commitment issues to overcome before making it all work out. Another belly laugh for all!

What Women Want (2000)

Mel Gibson & Helen Hunt: Mel Gibson is an ad exec who has to market women’s products but is too macho to know how to pull it off. Through a bathroom accident, he is given the ability to hear the thoughts of women. It’s cute and funny. The actors pull it off with comedy that keeps your watching to the end.

So check your DVD collection for these and more by Nora Ephron and Nancy Meyers. These films never grow old because they are extraordinarily written and directed.