Top 10 Romantic Comedies of the 1990s

Notting HillFebruary is the Love Month, but there’s nothing like a great romantic comedy to lift our spirits all year long.

The 1990s were a great decade for romantic comedies, bringing us beautiful pairings of Andie MacDowell and Bill Murray, Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant, Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise and Renee Zellweger, and plenty more.

Here are my definitive Top 10 Romantic Comedies of the 1990s, offering laughs, a few tears, and always a happy ending. Because we need more happy endings in our lives, right? Remember when that was a thing?

1. NOTTING HILL (1999)

  • Buy on Amazon | Watch on Amazon
  • The Couple: Will Thacker and Anna Scott (Hugh Grant, Julia Roberts)
  • The Story: The life of a simple bookshop owner changes when he meets the most famous celebrity in the world.
  • The Message: Relationships are never simple.
  • Best Quote: “I’m just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her.”
  • MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual content and brief strong language.

While You Were Sleeping2. WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING (1995)

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  • The Couple: Lucy and Jack (Sandra Bullock, Bill Pullman)
  • The Story: Lonely ticket-collecting romantic pretends to be engaged to an unconscious man, but can’t fool his brother.
  • The Message: When you marry someone, you marry their family.
  • Best Quote: “I’ve had a really lousy Christmas. You’ve just managed to kill my New Year’s. If you come back on Easter, you can burn down my apartment.”
  • MPAA Rating: PG for some language.

Jerry Maguire3. JERRY MAGUIRE (1996)

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  • The Couple: Jerry Maguire and Dorothy Boyd (Tom Cruise, Renee Zellweger)
  • The Story: When a sports agent has a moral epiphany and is fired for expressing it, he decides to put his new philosophy to the test as an independent. One athlete and an assistant bug out with him.
  • The Message: Sometimes you just need one person to believe in you, even when everyone else thinks you’re crazy.
  • Best Quote: “You had me at ‘hello.’”
  • MPAA Rating: R for language and sexuality.

French Kiss4. FRENCH KISS (1995)

  • Buy on Amazon
  • The Couple: Kate and Luc (Meg Ryan, Kevin Kline)
  • The Story: A woman flies to France to confront her straying fiancé, but gets into trouble when the charming crook seated next to her uses her for smuggling.
  • The Message: Sometimes the person you’re looking for is sitting right next to you.
  • Best Quote: “Did you know that there are four hundred and fifty-two official government cheeses in this country? Don’t you think that’s incredible? To come up with four hundred and fifty-two ways of classifying what is basically a bacterial process?”
  • MPAA Rating: PG-13 for some sexuality, language and drug references.

You've Got Mail5. YOU’VE GOT MAIL (1998)

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  • The Couple: Joe Fox and Kathleen Kelly (Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan)
  • The Story: Two rival bookstore owners abhor each other, until they realize their true feelings.
  • The Message: Sometimes, now more than ever, the person you pass by on the street might already be the love of your life.
  • Best Quote: “The odd thing about this form of communication is that you’re more likely to talk about nothing than something. But I just want to say that all this nothing has meant more to me than so many somethings.”
  • MPAA Rating: PG for some language.

Four Weddings and a Funeral6. FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL (1994)

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  • The Couple: Charles and Carrie (Hugh Grant, Andie MacDowell)
  • The Story: Over the course of five social occasions, a committed bachelor must consider the notion that he may have discovered love.
  • The Message: It’s all about finding the person you’re meant to be with — even if it takes a while.
  • Best Quote: “There I was, standing there in the church, and for the first time in my whole life I realized I totally and utterly loved one person. And it wasn’t the person next to me in the veil. It’s the person standing opposite me now … in the rain.
  • MPAA Rating: R for language, and for some sexuality.

Green Card7. GREEN CARD (1990)

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  • The Couple: Georges and Bronte (Gerard Depardieu, Andie MacDowell)
  • The Story: A man wanting to stay in the United States enters into a marriage of convenience, but it turns into something more.
  • The Message: The guy you’re initially repulsed by might just be the love of your life. And you realize that just as you’re about to say goodbye forever.
  • Perfect Quote: “We don’t have to like each other. We just have to get married.”
  • MPAA Rating: PG-13

Groundhog Day8. GROUNDHOG DAY (1993)

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  • The Couple: Phil Connors and Rita Hanson (Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell)
  • The Story: He keeps repeating the same day. She has no idea. They’re destined to fall in love.
  • The Message: Sometimes you have to repeat the past in order to find your future.
  • Best Quote: “You like boats, but not the ocean. You go to a lake in the summer with your family up in the mountains. There’s a long wooden dock and a boathouse with boards missing from the roof, and a place you used to crawl underneath to be alone. You’re a sucker for French poetry and rhinestones. You’re very generous. You’re kind to strangers and children, and when you stand in the snow you look like an angel.”
  • MPAA Rating: PG for some thematic elements

Pretty Woman9. PRETTY WOMAN (1990)

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  • The Couple: Edward Lewis and Vivian Ward (Richard Gere, Julia Roberts)
  • The Story: A wealthy businessman falls in love with a beautiful prostitute.
  • The Message: Look beyond the person on the surface, and you just might find the person you’re meant to spend the rest of your life with.
  • Best Quote: “Did I mention, my leg is 44 inches from hip to toe. So basically we are talking about 88 inches of therapy, wrapped around you for the bargain price of three thousand dollars.”
  • MPAA Rating: R for sexuality and some language.

Sleepless in Seattle10. SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE (1993)

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  • The Couple: Sam Baldwin and Annie Reed (Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan)
  • The Story: He’s a widower in Seattle. She’s engaged in Baltimore. They’ve never met, but they’re made for each other.
  • The Message: Never settle. Always take a chance on love.
  • Best Quote: “Destiny is something we’ve invented because we can’t stand the fact that everything that happens is accidental.”
  • MPAA Rating: PG for some language.

Images in this story used with permission of studios and distributors.


One response to “Top 10 Romantic Comedies of the 1990s”

  1. Sheryl Avatar

    These were all so good back when I first saw them…I would like to revisit them again!

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