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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Illinois chapter.

Let’s reminisce on the entertainment of the past! All of these movies are older rom-coms (for our generation), but, nonetheless, they are some of the most lasting and unforgettable rom-coms of all time. 

Dirty Dancing
Great American Films Limited Partnership

Pretty Woman (1990)

This movie is one of the best cinematic definitions of “opposites attract”. Against all odds, a wealthy, career-driven businessman falls for a prostitute with a heart of pure gold. Viviane and Edward come from differing backgrounds, yet their love for each other unites them in the end. Viviane finds someone who will love and care for her, and, in turn, Edward finds a woman who adores him for him, not his wealth. 

Clueless (1995)

This is one of the most iconic rom-com films. The narrator, Cher, is a high school student relishing in her father’s wealth and influence. However, when she begins to struggle academically and socially, Cher realizes several important things. One of those is her love for her ex-stepbrother, Josh. Josh was always a thorn in her side (and she to him), yet they both truly cared for one another. While this movie might seem shallow, the deeper meaning stresses the importance of relationships and personal accountability in school, social settings and in life. 

The Wedding Planner (2001)

Spoiler alert: the beautiful wedding planner ends up with the dashing groom. Before Mary meets her clients (the bride and groom), a handsome man swoops in and saves her from being hit by a car due to her heel being stuck. Instantly, there was a strong attraction between Mary and her savior. When Mary meets her clients, she realizes her savior and the man she was so drawn to is the groom of the wedding she was planning. For them both, several factors try to inhibit their attraction from growing. Despite Mary’s arranged marriage and Steve’s chosen marriage, the two characters decide who exactly they want to spend the rest of their lives with. This film stresses following your heart even when you think it may be too late.

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Felicity Warner / HCM

How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (2003)

This movie depicts the trope that “they both got played.” Andie, a journalist for a women’s magazine, is writing an article on how to lose a guy in ten days. As any good journalist would, she experiments with herself on the dos and don’ts of dating. At the same time, Ben, an advertising executive, must make a woman fall in love with him in ten days for a business deal. As Andie shows red flag after red flag expecting Ben to run, he sticks with her. In the midst of her trying to scare him off, her true personality slips through. The more time the two spend together, their attraction grows into love. Even after the two discover they both played each other, Ben catches Andie as she is leaving for the airport. Though this situation might seem unlikely, the message is not: don’t let the love of your life slip from your fingers. 

Though this article only covered four rom-coms, the messages in each are significant. If you are lucky enough to find love, then don’t let them walk out of your life. Follow your heart. It is never too late to spend time with your other half, your soulmate. You don’t always need to follow your head. Sometimes it’s okay to lead with your heart.

Autumn Bunzell

Illinois '27

Hi there! My name is Autumn Rose, and I'm from Utica, Illinois. I live minutes away from Starved Rock State Park. I attended LaSalle-Peru Township High School which consists of only about 1,200 students. Within my family, I'm the youngest in a close-knit household, and I have an older sister who I absolutely adore. As well, I have a golden retriever and a grey tabby cat. Currently, I'm a first-year neuroscience student at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Both the physical and psychological aspects of the human brain fascinate me. In addition, I'm interested in nutrition and how this field can be applied to neuroscience. There is a field labeled nutritional neuroscience that studies how the consumption of food, minerals, and supplements impacts an individual's cognition, mood, and overall brain health. Outside of the classroom, my hobbies vary tremendously. Music wise, I listen to Bryce Vine and Bazzi, but I also love Etta Mae, Arethra Franklin, and Frank Sinatra. As I do my morning routine, I listen to health and wellness podcasts on Spotify. In between classes, I do yoga and Pilates. At night, I love to do some skincare, and then crawl into bed with one of my books. Typically, I partake in crocheting and baking in the colder months. As a side note, my favorite season is fall because of the cool weather and all of the pumpkin/apple candles, foods, coffees, etc.