Of Love and Hatred – Rom Coms Throughout Recent History

10 Things I Hate About You- 9/10

10 Things I Hate About You, directed by Gil Junger, a 90s teen-movie adaptation of Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew” is the perfect Valentine’s day viewing for those looking for a bit of rebellion. The protagonist of the film, Kat (Julia Stiles), is the antithesis of her bubbly, popular sister Bianca  (Larisa Oleynik). When Cameron (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a shy nerdy boy from their school who’s loved Bianca from afar finally works up the nerve to ask her out, she finds out that the sisters’ overprotective father will not allow Bianca to date until Kat does. A desperate Cameron pays Patrick Verona (Heath Ledger), the school’s aggressive Australian transfer student, to date the abrasive Kat. The surprisingly complex and endearing characters are enough to draw the audience into this story, complete with emotional tidbits, such as Kat and Bianca’s trauma relating to their mother’s death, amongst its humorous dialogue. 


Definitely, Maybe- 7/10

Definitely, Maybe, directed by Adam Brooks, is a cute and enjoyable watch, not only about a man and his romantic endeavors, but also his relationship with his young daughter. Amidst his divorce, Will Hayes (Ryan Reynolds)’  daughter asks about how he met her mother, leading to him telling her the story of his adult life and his various partners, whilst changing their names so his daughter, Maya (Abigail Breslin), must guess who is who. Although a questionable idea realistically, in application it is quite sweet and a guessing game for the viewer as well. Single father-daughter relationships are not often depicted on screen, so seeing a strong bond between our main characters while they go through a difficult life experience (divorce) is quite refreshing and heart-warming. 


Mona Lisa Smile8/10

Mona Lisa Smile, directed by Mike Newell, is a feminist, chick-flick with a multitude of romances encapsulated. Set in the 1950s at Wellesley College, an elite all-girls school. Katerine Watson (Julia Roberts), the spunky new Art History teacher shakes up the student body by engaging them in art, instead of just having them memorize a textbook, and by having them question their purpose of going to college (to meet an eligible man). Katherine faces her own romantic trials alongside her students and is thwarted by the conservative alumni and school leadership. The ensemble film features strong performances and characters whom the audience wants to root for, as well as heart-wrenching scenes of the realistic problems of life. 


The Proposal7.5/10

The Proposal, directed by Anne Fletcher, is a great story for any fans of a workplace romance. Our main character, Andrew, is the assistant to the hardworking and focused editor, Margaret. When Margaret is faced with the reality that she may get deported back to Canada and in turn lose her job, she “proposes” to Andrew so that she can get a marriage visa, and stay in the US. However, in a whirlwind of seeing Andrew’s hometown and getting to truly know him (and his grandmother played by Betty White!), they start to fall in love. This comedy-driven film stars Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds, as they perform the perfect, funny, opposites attract couple. 


The Map Of Tiny Perfect Things- 8.5/10

The Map Of Tiny Perfect Things, directed by Ian Samuels, is a beautiful and romantic story of two teens, Margaret (Kathryn Newton) and Mark (Kyle Allen), separately living the same day on an endless loop. However, after many days of the exact same story, they find each other and a relationship begins to develop. Throughout their story together, Margaret and Mark go on many adventures and attempt to find every perfect event that occurs on this one day. As their adventure commences, there are amazing plot twists, and incredible reveals about both characters’ backstories to show the audience why this is happening to them. As the two become closer, they take the audience on a journey to learn more about life, love, and loss. Amazing acting, funny dialogue, and a beautiful message; The Map Of Tiny Perfect Things, is a must-see movie. 


50 First Dates- 8/10

50 First Dates, directed by Peter Segal, follows Henry (Adam Sandler), who starts to fall head over heels for Lucy (Drew Barrymore). There is only one problem, Lucy has short-term memory loss. Because of this, every morning Lucy wakes up thinking it is the same day that she got in a car accident and lost her ability to remember her recent past, and after every 24 hours, she forgets everything that happened on the last day. When Henry meets Lucy, he does not know this yet, but when he figures it out, he goes on 50 first dates with her, in the hopes that she will remember him. Despite the fact that she may not remember him, every date pushes them both deeper and deeper into love, as we all watch with tissues in our hands. Of course, there is a comedy, as there usually is with Adam Sandler’s movies and a heartthrob romance that you cannot peel your eyes away from. 


Mamma Mia!- 10/10

Mamma Mia!, directed by Phyllida Lloyd, follows our protagonist Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) and her hectic wedding to Sky (Dominic Cooper). Through confusion, song, and dance, Sophie attempts to discover who her birth father is out of the several ex-boyfriends of her mother, Donna (Meryl Streep). In order to ensure Sophie has the best wedding she can, Donna is determined to keep her friends and exes at bay. I would rate Mamma Mia! As 10/10, the film was great, kept you interested and the music was great too as it featured ABBA songs that went along with the story.


The Holiday- 7/10

The Holiday, directed by Nancy Meyers, follows the unlucky love lives of  Iris (Kate Winslet) and Amanda (Cameron Diaz) who swap homes in order to take a break from their day-to-day lives. Amanda goes to an English village while Iris goes to California. Both meet the men of their dreams and live happily ever after. I would rate the film overall as 7/10 stars, the movie itself was okay, but I found myself losing interest fairly quickly.


How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days- 8/10

How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, directed by Donald Petrie, follows Andie (Kate Hudson) and her book, How to Make a Guy Leave You in Ten Days. Andie’s editor, Lana (Bebe Neuwirth), enjoys her book and wants to use it to experiment. Lana finds Ben (Matthew McConaughey), a man who believes he can make any woman fall in love with him in ten days. The plans of both Andie and Ben backfire after meeting each other and testing their theories. I would rate this film as an 8/10; The plot was great but much like with The Holiday, at times I found myself losing interest and wanting to fast forward.