‘Tis the season for snuggling up on the couch, drinking some hot chocolate and enjoying a classic holiday movie with your loved ones. Whether you’re spending a quiet night in together or just need a reprieve from the holiday madness, here’s 10 classic movies that are guaranteed to add a little sparkle and romance to your life this week:
1. Love Actually (2003)
This film celebrates love and has set the gold standard when it comes to romantic holiday-themed comedies. Love Actually follows the lives of eight very different couples and their love lives in various loosely and interrelated tales all set during a frantic month before Christmas in London, England. There are so many “squee!”-worthy moments, that if this movie doesn’t give you a case of the holiday warm and fuzzies, you might want to check your pulse.
2. The Holiday (2006)
Put Cameron Diaz, Jude Law, Kate Winslet and Jack Black together and you get a surprisingly sweet and feel-good romantic comedy. When two women meet on a home exchange website, they decide to swap houses for the holidays. Once removed from their environment they learn a lot about themselves and happen to find love along the way. Hey, if swapping homes meant I’d get some cozy one-on-one action with Jude Law, I’d do it in a second!
3. When Harry Met Sally (1989)
This classic romantic comedy about two friends who fall in love is proof that although you may struggle through the trials and tribulations of love, it’s still possible to have a happy ending…even on New Year’s Eve.
Psst! Tune in to Slice to watch When Harry Met Sally on December 30 at 9pm.
4. While You Were Sleeping (1995)
In this modern-day screwball comedy, Sandra Bullock stars as Lucy, a lovestruck subway ticket collector who saves the life of her crush — her regular customer Peter (Peter Gallagher) — when he is thrown onto the tracks on Christmas Day. When Peter ends up in a coma, Lucy is mistaken for his fiancée and hijinks ensue when she decides to keep up the ruse for better or for worse. In the end, Lucy does find love — just not with the man she expects.
5. I’ll Be Seeing You (1944)
Ginger Rogers plays a convict who has been released from a state penitentiary for Christmas leave in this 1944 film. On a train to visit her family, she meets Sergeant Joseph Cotton, a shell-shocked soldier who has recently been discharged from a military mental hospital. She invites him for dinner and they fall in love despite the secrets they are harbouring. Who knew a movie about mental illness and prison could be so sweetly romantic?
6. Mixed Nuts (1994)
It’s Christmas Eve and the quirky, oddball staff of a suicide-prevention hotline, run by Philip (Steve Martin) and staffed with lovesick Catherine (Rita Wilson), are going berserk. Nothing is going right, until they meet an array of characters, including an “insane Santa” that put everything in perspective. If you’re like me and enjoy your holiday entertainment served up with a side of wacky humour, you’ll love this ’90s romantic comedy.
7. Serendipity (2001)
When two strangers (Kate Beckinsdale and John Cusack) meet in a department store while Christmas shopping, they spend an evening together and fall in love. Without exchanging contact information they decide to rely on fate to decide whether they’ll ever see each other again. Without spoiling the ending, the film demonstrates the true meaning of a Christmas miracle and leaves you feeling like anything is possible when it comes to love.
8. 200 Cigarettes (1991)
This storyline follows a group of 20-somethings as they cope with relationships, loneliness, desire and their individual neuroses on New Year’s Eve. Set in New York City’s Lower East Side in 1981, this indie gem starring Paul Rudd, Christina Ricci, Kate Hudson and Ben Affleck is perfect for the quirky hipster set or anyone who enjoys a feel-good romantic comedy with some sass.
9. Four Christmases (2008)
The holidays wouldn’t be the holidays without some hilarious family dysfunction. Four Christmases captures the insanity that is the holiday season in this wisecracking film about a couple (Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn) who set out to visit all four of their divorced parents on Christmas Day. The end result is a warm and fuzzy comedy that reminds you of the importance of family and love.
10. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
Although not typically considered a romantic movie, there’s something magical about watching old black-and-white movies like this 1946 holiday masterpiece. When down-on-his-luck businessman George Bailey meets an angel, he’s given the opportunity to see what life would be like if he didn’t exist. In the end, George sees how many lives he has touched in this heartwarming celebration of love.
Simone Paget is a freelance writer and the author of Skinny Dip, a cheeky blog about love, sex, relationships and everything in between. When she’s not writing her heart out, she loves wandering around her city, large cup of coffee in hand, in search of the next great story.