Some days we just want to curl up on the couch with a big tub of buttery popcorn and indulge in a binge-fest of tender tales and sappy love stories. Can you blame us? With the world in a topsy-turvy state, nothing is as stabilizing or comforting as a romantic movie to make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
Thankfully, Hulu has a goldmine of Cupid-approved masterpieces that explore love in all its perfectly imperfect states. From stories of budding, young love to narratives of unexpected, newfound flames, the streaming platform has a plethora of options and we’ve culled through and picked some of the most magical. Whether you’re up for passion-filled, playful or something in between, this list has the perfect romantic film to satisfy your heart’s desires. If you’re not a Hulu member yet, you can sign up right now for the 7-day free trial.
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Set in Harlem, this spellbinding story of summer love will make viewers long for heart flutters triggered by their first true loves. Directed by Rashaad Ernesto Green, his sophomore effort explores the ups and downs of a blossoming love told through the eyes of a young couple who may or may not be mature enough to handle everything that the overpowering emotion entails.
50 First Dates
The unofficial queen of romantic comedies, Drew Barrymore doesn’t disappoint in this endearing rom-com. Barrymore plays Lucy Whitmore, a bubbly woman who falls for playboy Henry Roth portrayed by funnyman Adam Sandler, but there’s one problem: she suffers from short-term memory loss. In order to woo her, Henry has to prove his love over and over again in this light-hearted love story.
How Stella Got Her Groove Back
This sexy movie centers around a May-December romance between Stella, an overachieving 40-something divorcée and a handsome 20-something whom she meets while vacationing in Jamaica. Starring Angela Bassett and Taye Diggs, the attractive pair turn up the heat in this ‘90s film based on the popular Terry McMillan novel of the same name.
When an unassuming British guy randomly bumps into a gorgeous woman on a London street, his world is turned upside down after he realizes that she’s one of the most esteemed and popular actresses in Hollywood. Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant ooze with onscreen chemistry in this classic boy meets girl romance.
The Sun Is Also a Star
Yara Shahidi shines in this remarkable display of young love that blissfully unfolds in a single day. Co-starring Riverdale actor Charles Melton, the New York City-based tale also touches on the sensitive and heart-wrenching aspects of deportation that are rarely depicted on the big screen.
The Bridges of Madison County
Meryl Streep isn’t heralded as one of the best actors in Hollywood for nothing. The Academy Award winner’s portrayal as a lovelorn farm wife in this slow-burning love story helped secure her spot in cinematic history. Clint Eastwood’s charm and charisma as a National Geographic photographer also captivates viewers as his character grapples with the complexities of falling in love with the right woman at the wrong time.
Water for Elephants
After a veterinary student’s plans are derailed by tragedy, he joins a traveling circus and finds himself smitten by a beautiful circus performer in this Depression-era saga. Starring Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson, this period piece centers around a gentle elephant named Rosie who brings the lead characters together in this entertaining adaptation of Sara Gruen’s best-seller of the same name.
When it comes to crafting sweet and sappy romance flicks, screenwriters often take a page straight from best-selling books, and this energetic adaption is no exception. The conundrum of choosing friendship over true love is one that is amusingly pondered in this romantic comedy starring Kate Hudson and Ginnifer Goodwin.
The challenges of long-distance love are marvelously depicted in this modern-day romance. After a strong attraction brews between Jacob, an American undergraduate and Anna, a British college student who’s studying abroad in Los Angeles, they’re suddenly separated after she overstays her visa. The couple is forced to find out if their deeply emotional and passionate bond can go the distance.
Already Tomorrow in Hong Kong
Art imitating life? Well, that’s the case in this perfectly executed story of finding love thousands of miles away. Real-life couple Jamie Chung and Bryan Greenberg co-star and soar in this splendid tale that’s in large part a love letter to Hong Kong’s dynamisms and mesmerizing wonder and partly a celebration of the beautiful possibilities that new love brings.
No Strings Attached
Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher are old friends turned lovers in this 2011 film. The twist? Neither believe in monogamy and the pair vow to keep their relationship strictly physical. Their steamy, unrestricted bedroom romps are all fine and dandy until both start developing deeper feelings.
Interracial marriages are the norm today, but that was not always the case. It took brave couples like Richard and Mildred Loving to fight against the laws that prohibited Black and white unions. This biographical account of the Lovings’ historical 1967 court proceedings and unyielding love are sure to tug at heartstrings and make viewers feel immense gratitude for their groundbreaking fortitude.
Love After Love
Andie MacDowell is a tour de force as a widow coming to terms with dating after the death of her husband. While she’s falling in love again, her family is simultaneously spiraling as each member struggles with the passing of the patriarch in their own ways.
My Best Friend’s Wedding
This pop culture favorite starring Julia Roberts, Dermot Mulroney, Cameron Diaz, and Rupert Everett is the crème de la crème of romantic comedies. When Julianne “Jules” Potter, a New York City food critic finds out her childhood best friend and secret crush is getting hitched, she does everything in her power to thwart his walk to the altar.
Anne Hathaway embodies British literary legend Jane Austen in a story of forbidden love akin to the icon’s fictitious masterpieces in this engaging biopic. To the dismay of her cash-strapped family, the aspiring novelist rejects a relationship with a wealthy suitor and falls for a man who lacks finances and social status.
If Beale Street Could Talk
Adapted from the best-selling James Baldwin novel of the same title, this 2018 film balances the beauty of budding intimacy with the ugliness of systemic racism. Like the book, the movie is set in New York City during the 1970s and tells the story of a young couple faced with unimaginable circumstances that tests their unwavering love.
Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Set in 18th century France, this film is an exquisite and striking tale of two women whose companionship ravishingly escalates to enviable levels of intimacy. The award-winning movie has subtitles, but viewers will quickly forget they’re reading as they’re swept up in the masterful performances and magnificent cinematography.
The Truth About Cats and Dogs
When sparks fly over the airwaves between a caller and a radio host who offers advice about pets, the insecure protagonist played by Janeane Garofalo goes into full panic mode. What does she do? She enlists her modelesque neighbor portrayed by Uma Thurman to impersonate her when the sexy caller wants to meet in person. Perhaps, this hilariously executed 1996 film set the trend for online catfishing that would surface years later?
Is love truly blind? That cliché statement is put to the test after a successful novelist loses his sight in a car accident and finds himself enamored by a woman he’s never laid eyes on. Featuring Alec Baldwin, Demi Moore, and Dylan McDermott, this romance is jam-packed with drama and megawatt star power.
It would take more than garlic, crucifixes, and evil forces to keep Bella Swan from her vampire beau in this fantasy film adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s novel of the same name. This is the first movie in the blockbuster series that seamlessly blends teen romance and supernatural genres.
Karla Pope is a longtime writer, editor and lifestyle blogger who enjoys exploring New York City with her two young children.
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