In no particular order, read about the best romantic comedies to come out of the 80s and 90s!
- Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
This may be my own biases coming into play, but Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is the epitome of an 80s movie. It is the ultimate comfort movie and by far one of the most easily quotable films I’ve seen.
Arguably much more comedy than romance, the audience can’t help but root for Ferris as he navigates the ultimate school ditch day by faking being sick. From musical numbers to lovable characters, this movie claims one of the top spots on my favorite movie list.
- Sixteen Candles
When it comes to 80s and 90s rom-coms, Molly Ringwald is a household name.
Sixteen Candles perfectly encompasses the frustrations and awkwardness of being 16, along with the confusion and loneliness that can come with teenage years – especially when your family is so caught up in their own lives that they forget your birthday!
On my 16th birthday, I remember watching this movie and then sitting on top of my dining room table eating birthday cake with my boyfriend as an ode to this classic film. This is a quintessential coming-of-age movie and no young woman should miss out.
After all, everyone deserves their Jake Ryan-esque love interest who will celebrate their birthday, even when no one else remembers.
- Pretty in Pink
If you thought there would only be one Molly Ringwald movie on this list, think again.
The iconic actress strikes again with her performance in Pretty in Pink as the underdog love interest who gets mixed in with the cool kids, also known as the “pretentious assh*les.”
Ringwald’s character Andie is caring and genuine, making her easy to love, just like her quirky best friend Duckie, who is (not so) secretly in love with her.
- Sleepless in Seattle
Although this story has a happy ending, as all rom-coms do, Sleepless in Seattle is definitely a tear-jerker for any empath.
Tom Hanks plays a widower with a young son. A whirlwind romance begins between Hanks’ character and a stranger when his son calls a late-night talk show in search of a new wife for his dad.
Don’t let the Seattle name fool you, this sentimental story ends with a romantic scene atop the Empire State Building, leaving you wanting to drop everything to meet a love interest on Valentine’s Day in New York City.
- When Harry Met Sally
When Harry Met Sally is one of the more famous rom-coms that I had heard about growing up, but for one reason or another, I had not ripped off the bandaid to watch it until rather recently.
Homesick and curled up in a blanket sipping on tea last fall, I hunkered down and hit play on this classic. Let me tell you, it was just what the doctor ordered.
A perfect mix of romance and comedy, the witty banter and wholesome dynamic between the two main characters was the epitome of a comfort movie. So next time you’re craving a heartfelt-yet-goofy story, or are feeling a bit under the weather – this rom-com might be the cure!
- Can’t Buy Me Love
You may know him best as “McDreamy” from “Grey’s Anatomy,” but the heartthrob Patrick Dempsey was first put on the map with this role in this movie!
One of my personal most-watched rom coms, thanks to Can’t Buy Me Love, I’ve now added driving away into the sunset sitting on the back of a ride-on lawn mower to my bucket list. Chances are, if you give this movie a watch, then you’ll add it to yours too!
- Pretty Woman
Oddly enough, my first experience watching Pretty Woman was with my grandmother. This may seem unusual considering that, on the surface, it’s a film about a wealthy man hiring a prostitute.
After hearing that description I was initially turned off from the movie, but for those who haven’t already seen it, I beg you to give it a try!
Julia Roberts and Richard Gere make a stunning and highly compatible couple in this movie. Not to mention there are some iconic lines from when Roberts’ character Vivian goes on a shopping spree, which I am sure you’ve heard.
- Never Been Kissed
Calling all Pretty Little Liars fans: this movie starring the beloved Drew Barrymore follows the storyline of the Ezra and Aria of an older generation.
Okay, not really. But Never Been Kissed does involve a romance between a teacher and a copywriter who goes undercover as a student to write an exposé on teenage culture!
This movie consists of a crazy series of events that will take you back to your high school days. Whether those memories are good or bad, this movie is a must-watch.
If you can get over the weirdness of Cher’s main love interest being her ex step-brother (played by Paul Rudd)… then Clueless is the perfect cutesy and ditsy type of movie to throw on the TV with some friends.
The characters of the movie live an incredibly privileged life that they satirically describe as that of any normal teen, but the unrealistic nature of much of the movie makes it a fun and entertaining escape from boredom!
- 10 Things I Hate About You
If there’s anything you should take away from this list, it’s that this movie is a must-watch. If you walked down the street and surveyed teenage to college-aged women, you would find a vast majority of them saying that 10 Things I Hate About You is one of their absolute favorite movies.
Whether it’s the iconic casting combo of young Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles, the juicy and dramatic plot line, or the promotion of being an independent woman that resonates with so many young women, 10 Things I Hate About You never disappoints.
Now, after exploring these 80s and 90s classics, you may actually begin to understand your parents’ movie references.